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What's YOUR favorite A-B reference CD?

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People often advise A-Bing a mix with a really well-mastered reference CD so you have a standard of comparison. Aside from Donald Fagen's "The Nightfly" (engineered by EQ's very own Roger Nichols), which is pretty much already in the "Reference CD Hall of Fame," which CDs would you choose?


I'll get the ball rolling with one of my faves: Tom Petty's "Damn the Torpedoes." I really admire the way the mix seems to translate to anything capable of playing back audio.

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Family Style by the Vaughan Brothers, produced by Nile Rogers. Incredible sounding drums and bass. Everything sounds gorgeous. The bass guitar and bass drums sound huge and bigger than other CDs, and never overpowers the speakers, even when cranking a PA system. How did Niles do it?
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Kamakiriad - Donald Fagen (This just sounds so nice. I like the tones better than Two Against Nature!)


Gaucho - SD (I love this too Steve!)


Spirit of Eden -Talk Talk (great dynamics and beautiful tones)


Blood Sugar Sex Magic - Chili Peppers (for great live drum tones and that "kick ass" sound)


The Fragile - Nine Inch Nails (smooth and fat, even for digital! Great dynamics and space too.)


Time Out - Dave Brubeck Quartet (if you need that jazz vibe, this is a good place to go, among others)


Secrets of the Beehive - David Sylvian (Just a really nice record to listen to).



[This message has been edited by richt (edited 08-22-2000).]

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And speaking of A-Bing, does anyone out there use programs like Steinberg's FreeFilter to "lift" the spectral response and impose it on the CD you're mastering/recording? Do you think this type of tool is useful, or mostly hype?
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I've played around with the Ionizer Demo and its ability to morph an EQ shape from another recording to what you present it. It was pretty incredible. It gave the same proportion of bass to mid to treble as the host EQ. Only problem was that the bass had to much high end added when I tried it.


It does dynamic compression, expansion, dynamic EQ, multiband features, noise reduction, EQ morphing, etc.. Seems like what people would want. More so than C4's, Bomb Factory, etc. Except it doesn't seem very popular.


I don't have a TDM system, but I'm weighing the Ionizer vs McDSP Compressor Bank vs C4.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I use the ff to soundcheck my home studio and compare my mixes :


The Citizen CD's - Steely Dan

Animals & The Wall - Pink Floyd

The White Album & Abbey Road - The Beatles

The Nightfly & Kamakiriad - Donald Fagen

Load - Metallica

The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion

- The Black Crowes

Exile on Main St. & Sticky Fingers

- The Rolling Stones


so far, so good......

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