Eleanor Rigby length: Revolver vs. Anthology | The songs | Fab forum

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Eleanor Rigby length: Revolver vs. Anthology
13 May 2014
A Beginning
Forum Posts: 1
Member Since:
13 May 2014

Hey y'all. I'm an audio engineer and one of my favorite hobbies is to screw with Beatles tunes in digital editors because Beatles music is so clean and consistently mixed since the 2009 remasters. However, I've noticed something bizarre:

If you place the raw WAVE files for the Revolver 2009 stereo remaster of "Eleanor Rigby" and the Anthology 2 "strings only" versions in the same file, they initially sync up perfectly, as I would expect from Beatles recordings. However, the two tracks quickly fall noticeably out of sync and when looking at the end of the files, the two have a roughly one second difference. This has obvious implications regarding the quality of the tape playback during remastering (i.e. either it was slow for Anthology or fast for 2009 remasters).

Furthermore, when I compared the strings to the original CD stereo master of Revolver (American tracklisting circa 1980s), the same thing happened. I also compared the file lengths of the 2009 remaster and '80s original master (both stereo): 2009 is shorter than '80s master by about .08 seconds, though I assume this was to correct a mastering speed error introduced to the original CD master.

Given that both Revolvers have files with only negligible differences in length, I'm going to assume Anthology was mastered slow. Possible explanations I can think of are:

  • The strings were originally recorded at that speed, but sped up slightly when the Beatles' overdubs were added, possibly to better match pitch
  • There was a mastering error with the original LP, which recorded too fast and the "strings only" is the original recording speed
  • There was simply a speed error when mastering Anthology, though this seems unthinkable with George Martin at the helm of the original equipment

But, I'd rather know than assume, so if anyone can shed some light, I would greatly appreciate it. And sorry that this is so verbose.

EDIT: Just want to clarify that by length, I mean from start of signal to end of signal, with all silence (~60dB and under) removed.

BTW, I searched the forum for this and found nothing. If I'm repeating an already-existing thread, kindly direct me there!

13 May 2014
Somewhere other than where you are.
Apple rooftop
Forum Posts: 2616
Member Since:
1 November 2013

I'm not hugely knowledgable here at all. In fact, I know nothing. I'd just like to welcome you and encourage you to stick around, introduce yourself, and have some discussions!

Oh, have you tried matching the Yellow Submarine Songtrack version? That's probably a different length seeing as it was remixed, but just a suggestion.

(This signature brought to you by Winter. Coming for an abnormally long amount of time.)
16 May 2014
Forum Posts: 3491
Member Since:
31 March 2008

That's really interesting. I have no idea why there might be a difference, but my guess would be Anthology has the strings at their original recording speed.

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