Is ol' Neil right? Is "low-quality streaming hurting our songs and brains"?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by RoscoeElegante, Aug 20, 2019.

  1. jimash

    jimash Friend of Leo's

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    I fixed a set of Epicures. They sound really nice.
    I took them down to sell but I still might not.
     
  2. aerhed

    aerhed Friend of Leo's

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    Dude, you had a lame music room! The easy solution to that was you grabbed your best bong and skated on over to the cool dude's house who had the big McIntosh and the posters and curtains and such. How else you gonna enjoy the latest Spyrogyra master disc?
     
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  3. hemingway

    hemingway Poster Extraordinaire

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    I have a schmancy hi-fi and some sexy headphones. It all sounds great. But I have also enjoyed music through some lousy little beatboxes and radios over the years.

    And I don't think most people have ever heard - or care about - music sounding as it should. They want something to tap their feet and sing along to.

    So it's no different now than it ever was.

    Neil's grasp on reality is long gone.
     
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  4. Ron R

    Ron R Friend of Leo's

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    There's also a downside of streaming in that it makes music even more disposable and only 'in the moment' for the majority of people. Maybe I'm being a curmudgeon too, but devaluing the medium is likely not good for its long-term prospects.
     
  5. Norris Vulcan

    Norris Vulcan Tele-Holic

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    I think new bands starting out now are very glad of the exposure streaming provides, even if they make nothing from it. Quality is moot when you're just trying to get some plays.

    ...Since the advent of portable devices, which sort of coincided with the modern recording studio.
     
  6. burntfrijoles

    burntfrijoles Poster Extraordinaire

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    It doesn’t matter. For most people, putting an album on a turntable or inserting a CD into a player is too much of a bother. I don’t stream but I listen to my own iTunes library in whatever the highest format Apple offers. It’s convenient and sounds fine to me.
    I’m approaching 70 and remember that most of generation spent their first discretionary income on a nice component stereo system. There’s only a small market for that. I gave away all but about 50 of my albums and all but about 100 of my CDs. I don’t know why I’ve bothered to keep those. I’ve posted this before but every year I consider buying a receiver, speakers and a turntable (like the bygone days). I research it a little. Then I look at my Sonos wifi speaker and HomePod wifi speaker and realize that i don’t really listen to them when all i have to do is say “play some Robben Ford”. It would be a waste to buy a stereo system.

    Neil is a great artist but both Santana and him talk some crazy stuff sometimes.
     
  7. Fearnot

    Fearnot Friend of Leo's

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    That always seemed to be the case... the guys with the best sound systems listened to the lamest music.
     
  8. radiocaster

    radiocaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    Not everybody, but some people listen to music on cheap computer speakers or laptop speakers or phone speaker. I use an older cheap boombox connected to the computer, and it does sound better than the cheaper computer speakers.
     
  9. beninma

    beninma Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Things you learn, apparently Neil Young was a genius if he bought 1000 acres in Malibu back in the day.
     
  10. maxvintage

    maxvintage Friend of Leo's

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    There's so much incoherence in that article!

    1. digital capture isn't missing anything, except analog noise. Digital recordings capture much more than analog recordings, because there's a lower noise floor, but they don't include the analog noise and distortion. The history of analog hi fi used to be the history of eliminating noise and distortion. Now that it's gone, people want it back. Meh

    2. Different playback formats. Neil is talking about Mp3. Mp3 uses the phenomenon of "auditory masking" to eliminate what we actually aren't hearing at any given moment. It's a well established fact that in any music we hear some frequencies are "masking" others--the snare hit masks the guitar for a fraction of a second. The bassoon masks the oboe, then the oboe reappears. We hear it as continuous, because the guitar comes back after the snare transients are gone, but in fact you can eliminate huge chunks of audio a nano second at a time and no one can tell. If you do a blind, ABX test of a WAV file and a high quality Mp3, you will be very unlikely to tell the difference. i know, I've tried. Mp3 is optimized for normal human hearing, Neil doesn't have normal hearing. He has f'ed up hearing from standing in front of crazy Horse for decades. So maybe poorly encoded Mp3s sound bad to him.

    3. Listening styles. Yep, people listen differently now, in different contexts and with different kinds of devices. Neil used to be "with it." But then they changed what "it" was. And now everything new is weird and scary.


    Can someone please reconcile the demand for high qaulity audio with the claim that the best way to listen is in a moving car with the top down? Because ol' Neil isn't making much sense.

    Rich guy, famous, nobody ever says "no," he starts to think his crabby personal opinions are holy writ.
     
  11. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Ad Free Member

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    With all due respect, you only have to slap in an old cassette tape for a listen to realize what is missing in today's digital world. NY has been harping on this for a very long time and I give him credit for trying, but the majority of people don't really care and would rather have a cheap convenient listening experience. We here on TDPRI are probably about the only exception and do care, but consider how much the typical bar patron cares about what kind of pick-up that you are using.
     
  12. P Thought

    P Thought Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    I don't think I hear well enough any more to care too much about this, but Neil Young's always OK with me. The one time I saw him in concert was a transcendent experience. He's right about one thing: front-loaded loans should be illegal.
     
  13. bumnote

    bumnote Tele-Meister

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    Another aspect that he and probably some of us are forgetting is what sounds good at what age to your ears.
    Back in medieval times when I made mix tapes for the car, I'd ride the record level as I made it to compress the sound as much as possible...everything seemed louder and it was all at one volume. Today my ears would be screaming about the lack of depth...not to mention I liked high end far more than I do now. I used to love the Bowie mix of Iggy Pop's "Raw Power"...today I realize its a crime that that album is an absolute mess of high end with no lows.
    Something that's originally mixed well streamed on the highest quality on Spotify still sounds light years better to my ears than FM radio. Maybe not audiophile quadraphonic Dolby Sound Sound 25.1 with Smell-o-vision good...but it doesn't sound like garbage.
     
  14. Dave W

    Dave W Friend of Leo's

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    I don't have to think twice about it. If Neil says so, I'll automatically disagree.

    What I've always wondered is what dirt Neil has on Crosby, Stills and Nash that they would ever agree to let him join them. Compromising photos of a threesome?
     
  15. dickey

    dickey Tele-Afflicted

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    All I know is this...the more sophisticated recording & music technology becomes, the crappier the music that is recorded gets.
    Shame. Would loved to have heard The Beatles on today's sound equipment.
     
  16. Musekatcher

    Musekatcher Tele-Afflicted

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    I think sound quality has suffered. While today's equipment has more frequency range than the past, I think dynamics aren't there, rise times, phase and IMD issues, etc., make it more fatiguing. I recently pulled my old class A hi-fi equipment out and my old bookshelf speakers to hear what I thought was good quality 30 years ago. No comparison. About the only thing to say about todays equipment, is that its loud, and cheap.
     
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  17. Keefsdad

    Keefsdad Tele-Holic

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    I think he's righ in the sense that when i grew up in the 60's and 70's, people had stereos that sounded way better than MP3's or Spotify, and people growing up now do not experience that, for the most part. i'm not totally against digital, I have tons of Cd's.
     
  18. LutherBurger

    LutherBurger Friend of Leo's

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    Wow, flutter, hiss, and severely limited dynamic range?
     
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  19. Lawdawg

    Lawdawg Tele-Holic

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    What's missing from digital compared to cassette? Is it the lousy noise floor, limited frequency response, reduced dynamic range, maybe the tape degradation? Cassettes were the low bitrate MP3 of their day and I don't miss them one little bit.

    To each their own of course, but people have always favored the convenience of being able to incorporate music into their day to day lives over the purest fidelity whether via car radio, a portable transistor, walkman, mp3 player, or smart phone. Twas always the case and I'm not sure why that's looked down upon by Neil Young.
     
  20. teleman1

    teleman1 Tele-Holic

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    This is such an easy obvious choice of the matter. Digital sucks compared to analog. It exhausts your mind listening to it. Especially low quality recorded mp3 stuff. I find it hard to believe some of you are musicians. Neil is 100% right on and no one you know or respect as an artist would disagree. Not even Ted Nugent. If you do not buy what I say, you will have to be qualified. And that qualifying would be hearing a wonderfully recorded album like say Abbey Road on Vinyl On a decent Stereo. Game over, you have no argument. And if the folks listening have no turntable, if they are serious they have a an Analog Digital converter they spent a ton on to come close to the analog a turntable is putting out under optimal conditions. Understand the premise, DIGITAL SUCK next to analog. Put that next to don't stare at the Sun in your book of logic. Dave Growl made a freaking movie about it;take the needle out of your arms. You've have been HAD with this as well as most everything else these days. Digital was made for one reason, to bring Howard Stern to all of us. Unfortunelatley, his show is the only thing that sounds good on Series;all else sound compressed like a pancake.
     
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