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John Williams & the Vienna Philharmonic: January 18/19 2020 w/ CD & Blu-ray coming August 14 2020


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Some fact snippets I gathered from people who talked to people (in the orchestra etc.):   - The Philharmoniker were big fans of Williams as a conductor and specifically pointed out his sensi

In this topic, there has already been some speculation about WP seating on JW concerts and we had a good chat of our own with @Marian Schedenig so I decided to ask my friend who plays double bass in t

Just now, Holko said:

I've heard plenty of music digitally that has the exact same sound quality and warmth I remember grandma's LPs having.

 

So have I. That's why I said "upgrade, if need be". Most things are just fine on CD.

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2 hours ago, blondheim said:

I shouldn't have said it is a fact since I can't properly explain why. Something about the space around the sound being captured on vinyl in a way that CDs cut it off, and that sound being integral to the full experience. I can hear an obvious difference. I have the same recordings in vinyl rip and CD-quality lossless and on blind spot tests, I have always been able to determine which is which. Not sections with obvious popping. I think the fact that vinyl is etched-in gives it a visceral texture it wouldn't have otherwise. I always buy CD first because vinyl can be made wrong and can be an expensive purchase to take that chance on. When I have the CD, I am more inclined to upgrade, if need be.

 

I don't think anyone can really hear the difference between 16 and 24 bit audio.

 

And let me defend mono here: a lot of amazing classical recordings came out in mono, once upon a time. There was a label (I have raved about it before) that hung microphones over the audience on laundry lines and moved them during the recording sessions to isolate and round out different pockets of sound. It is really incredible, and due to the denseness of the mono trying to sound stereo, it has a quality basically nothing else has.

 

 

Irrespective of these technical considerations on different media, I have just realised that the only track containing Anne-Sophie's Strad (Daryl's Dance) seems louder than the orchestral tracks. Was this oversteered and why?

 

I found Across the Stars was mostly oversteered.

5 hours ago, handz said:

What day is the cover photo from? 

19. January 2020. The blue-tie day.

 The inner cover is from the first concert with silver tie.

 

There are at least two silver-tie sections on the Bluray: "Guten Tag" and introduction to Tintin.

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10 hours ago, Biodome said:

 

Can you actually hear any difference in the quality of the sound, compared to the usual CD format? I've heard about the UHQCD technology before, but I've never bought any of these, unsure if they were worth the price or not.

 

I am not sure. I have some HD files with MQA and a system that will unfold them, but I think this will be my first CD in that format. If played on small headphones, I doubt there is a difference (maybe in spatial separation?). But on an open air large speaker set up, it might be audible. I order the disc as much for the audio possibilities as just owning the disc in my collection.

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So far, Close Encounters, ET, War Horse and basically all of the slower pieces just take my breath away. Also I urge everybody to check out Rebellion is Reborn on this one.

 

......but still there are also some glaring performance issues. Shark Cage Fugue sounds like a good right-read session at moments. SW main titles is also problematic (although amazing in sound).

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On 8/13/2020 at 12:01 PM, rough cut said:

That’s really cool.

 

But how many people have atmos at home?

 

I don't know, but I am one of the lucky people to have it embedded in my home theater system. I have never been more excited to get the Blu-Ray and CD set. I cannot wait!

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10 hours ago, rough cut said:

That’s really cool.

 

But how many people have atmos at home?

 

We just remodeled and we added ceiling speakers so as to have height speakers for Atmos playback! Will report what I think of the mix whenever my disc arrives.

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On 8/12/2020 at 11:24 PM, blondheim said:

Is it sad that I am even excited to investigate this apparent mistake?

That is what keeps music alive!! The sheer diverdity of composition, performance and perception.

 

There will never be an ultimate version of ET's Adventures, but this new versiion is close to perfection and has a new colour shade and a golden shine to it.

 

By saying this, I am not downgrading the Boston Pops version on Sony which has its independent qualities.

 

And I could still die for the Bostonian Flight to Neverland!

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I don’t mind technical advancements, and a properly set up Atmos system (with good source) should sound better than a 5.1. The obvious benefit would be for home cinema, but for concert movies, think of it as reverb, perhaps?

 

I do, however, think that Atmos has very limited actual benefit in consumers’ home due to the laborsome set up you have to do (freakin’ speakers in the ceiling, man) to get it right!

 

It’s complicated enough to set up a proper 5.1 and I doubt that most consumers - assuming they even have a system - even get speaker placement right for “just” that.

 

That said, I’m glad to see that JW’s concert is at the forefront of technological achievement.

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Anyone in USA getting the Ltd Collectors Edition Vinyl yet? I just want to know if besides shipping you have to pay any duties or additional fee (US only) 

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1 hour ago, bruce marshall said:

Atmos is for theaters.

People who install it in Home systems are  just showing off.

😆

 

I think that there can be actual benefits to gain if you have the time and money to invest in Atmos, but for most of us I'm guessing the effort it would take going from a good 5.1 system to Atmos is not worth the difference in improvement for most of us - but that would be highly individual.

 

That said, I'd rather hear about people investing in a Atmos (or even a good 5.1 system for that matter!) and good speakers and getting their setup right, rather than spending their money on Hi-res audio files where the actual benefit is extremely minimal no matter what system your're using, that benefit is more theoretical than practical.

 

But I guess, all that is niche. Even "regular" lossless sound, not to mention having 5+ speakers. Most listen to music through a lossy streaming services, and how many know that DVD audio is lossy? There are still far too many out there who are still buying DVDs who probably don't have HD equipment at home... For example, there was a minor burst of outrage on the forum when the concert wasn't released on DVD, and everybody here probably has a bigger interest in movies and music than most , so just imagine the status of the general public.

 

june-13-2020.jpg

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5 hours ago, BB-8 said:

That is what keeps music alive!! The sheer diverdity of composition, performance and perception.


Nah, some of it is just a bit unprofessional for an orchestra of this level. Well, it can happen of course, but it shouldn’t make its way to an album.

 

Since they did a repair session after the concert, I think it’s weird they couldn’t fix the Main Titles. Surely they can play a march in 4/4 together right? 
 

Listening to it again, it MIGHT also just be the engineer fucking up a crossfade. I don’t know.

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10 minutes ago, Jurassic Shark said:

What timestamp are you referring to?


About 0:19 to 0:24.

 

Anyway, before I get attacked for complaining about it, most of the pieces on the album are just the golden standard from now on :-)

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Link corrected.

 

The WPO is just not quite a first-rate orchestra.*

 

*When it comes to film music. :) They have a lot of catching up to do!

 

Anybody else thinks the trumpet in the Raiders march sounds too polite?

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Well, considering it’s not standard repertoire for them, they did a marvelous job. But pieces like the Shark Cage Fugue probably needed some more time before CD recording.

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I've just had a thought while watching some of the video...... now as a disclaimer, obviously I adore John, why else would i be here?! :D and I really do respect the orchestra as being one of the best in the world, and I was at the concerts in person and honestly couldn't have hoped for a better experience...... so, with that said....

 

Does anyone here who might be more familiar with the orchestra than I am, (Marian?... I'm thinking maybe you) do we know how much of the Wiener Philharmoniker "A-Team" we have here? I'm thinking about orchestras here in the UK who regularly have players dep their places out to stand in players. I'm assuming it works the same way the world over?

 

I'll never forget the disappointment I felt after attending a Beethoven performance from the Hallé here in Manchester, and talking to one of the woodwind players in the pub afterwards. My friend mentioned that I was coming to the Williams night they were having the following week, and before the sentence was even finished, she rolled her eyes and said "hmmmm, all a bit 'pops' for me, I think I'll be depping that one out." I think my reply was just "wow. well, I couldn't possibly disagree with you more if I tried." I wanted to make some quip about being careful heading back to the busy bar, your musical blinkers might cause problems. But I left it :D 

 

Anyway. I've seen the Hallé on nights where they're obviously the top players, and I've seen nights where they were lacking in certain areas. Sometimes it's down to conductor, but I guess sometimes it's down to the experience of the players too. The majority of this concert recording is absolutely perfect. But, as is the nature of live music.. there are a few little flubs here and there. And yes, we can't forget that Johnny is getting on a bit, and I wouldn't be surprised if by the time the Shark Cage Fugue came round he was waiting for his second wind. None of this takes away from my huge enjoyment of the album. It's a snapshot of a wonderful historic moment in time, and this is how it happened. 

 

Having seen a few New Year concerts with the Vienna Phil, and watching some clips of them with Andris Nelsons, I'm noticing some familiar faces but also seeing plenty that aren't there in the Williams footage. Members come and go, I understand that, but I have no idea how regular change over is. So I suppose my question is.... with the orchestra not being well known at all for their "pops" performances, do you think the line up we have at these concerts is made up of the regular players, or more "understudys" who might have been more excited about the prospect of a Williams concert? Was our dear John snubbed by any of the orchestra regulars do we think?

Just a thought! Wondering if anyone else has a take on it. 

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3 hours ago, rough cut said:

 

   5 hours ago,  bruce marshall said: 

Atmos is for theaters.

People who install it in Home systems are  just showing off.

😆

 

I think that there can be actual benefits to gain if you have the time and money to invest in Atmos, but for most of us I'm guessing the effort it would take going from a good 5.1 system to Atmos is not worth the difference in improvement for most of us - but that would be highly individual.

 

That said, I'd rather hear about people investing in a Atmos (or even a good 5.1 system for that matter!) and good speakers and getting their setup right, rather than spending their money on Hi-res audio files where the actual benefit is extremely minimal no matter what system your're using, that benefit is more theoretical than practical.

 

But I guess, all that is niche. Even "regular" lossless sound, not to mention having 5+ speakers. Most listen to music through a lossy streaming services, and how many know that DVD audio is lossy? There are still far too many out there who are still buying DVDs who probably don't have HD equipment at home... For example, there was a minor burst of outrage on the forum when the concert wasn't released on DVD, and everybody here probably has a bigger interest in movies and music than most , so just imagine the status of the general public.

 

 

 

My motivation to have them installed was much more of experimentation and seeing if I would enjoy having Atmos for watching 4K Atmos movies. We were already repainting the room and adding the wires for 5.1 which the previous owners had not had in the space. I doubt I would have just put up the speakers without all the other work already being done; it was a minor add in with our work being done. (There are set ups where you can have surround speakers that have up firing drivers to create an illusion of height speakers. Heck even some sound bars feature that so people can add Atmos without the extra wiring. That feels like showing off since it's not truly Atmos and going to very dependent on the reflections from the ceiling.)

 

For movies that are properly mixed, Atmos is quite nice in blending in the surrounds to be less directionally obvious and more atmospheric a sound field. So, for that, I like them a lot. For music listening, even for 5.1 SACDs, I don't have them on since the source material was not mixed that way. (My Denon will process sound into them if asked, but I do not think the result is any good.) With music in general, most 5.1 SACDs are good when they use the surrounds for minimal for acoustics of the hall. When they do too much there, the experience is defeated and I just switch to stereo. As someone pointed out earlier in the thread, a good mono recording and mix can be great. I completely agree.

 

So, it's really a matter of flexibility in having the extra speakers. And with the JW in Vienna Blu-ray on its way where they have done an Atmos mix, I am excited to experience the music this way to see what the mixing team has done. Believe me, if I think it sounds lousy, I will just watch the video in 5.1 or stereo. Atmos streams can be decoded into various configurations so the mix should be whatever they decided in mastering. We'll see. I'm glad to have something new to experiment with which was probably why I set the whole system up anyway.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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From now on, I'm going to avoid this thread as much as possible, so I'm as fresh as possible when I get the set.

 

As I said over on FSM, it will be a dual experience for me. On the one hand, immense frustration that I had to sell my ticket due to other obligations and the envy I feel towards those who were able to attend, and on the other hand delight in seeing Williams conduct a great concert, in sparkling sound and video. But I want to go in as unprepared as possible, to get the full impact.

 

Haven't ordered it yet, though. Hopefully, it won't sell out.

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