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Why Mono?
4 August 2016
1.09am
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Mademoiselle Kitty >^..^<
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You mean like 1+, @Ron Nasty? I have, and they're incredible.

 

Edit: you probably don't. Anyway, I'm sure they are! 

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7 August 2016
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Bongo
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Ron Nasty said
You should hear the 2014 analogue mono remasters, @Mademoiselle Kitty >^..^<.

They are a total revelation. They put the 2009 mono and stereo remasters to shame.  

Just wait until they release the AAA Stereo LPs....george-martin

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15 August 2016
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Why mono? Why not?

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"This Beatles talk bores me to death.” —John Lennon 

16 August 2016
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ewe2
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I love the drive of the mono recordings and the clarity of the stereo recordings where possible. I have @Beatlebug 's problem, its very hard as a fan and a musician to not separate the components when listening, and mono helps overcome that at times. It doesn't help when they play pranks like the mix of Maxwell's Silver Hammer , deliberately echoing the early stereo mixes (in my opinion)!

It's generally accepted that a good mono mix almost always leads to a good stereo mix but not vice versa and many engineers prefer to mix mono first before stereo. Apart from that, mono is still in a lot of use, eg small radios, clubs, FM radio defaults to mono in bad conditions. When you mix in mono you're working on the levels and the frequency range of the parts, with stereo you have the extra panning. The trouble with stereo is that it can give you a false sense of these things if you depend on panning too much, and if you convert from stereo back to mono, it will sound worse. So, that's why mono is still very important in recording technology. It's why those mixes are terrific.

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16 August 2016
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@Expert Textpert queried 
Why mono? Why not? 

Don't you mean... 

YNOT?!Image Enlarger
?

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16 August 2016
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No. That is the answer to the question, "Y mono?"

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19 August 2016
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William Shears Campbell
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@Expert Textpert said
No. That is the answer to the question, "Y mono?"  

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19 August 2016
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That's great.

"This Beatles talk bores me to death.” —John Lennon 

23 August 2016
10.34am
Ram4
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Mademoiselle Kitty >^..^< said
You mean like 1+, @Ron Nasty? I have, and they're incredible.

 

Edit: you probably don't. Anyway, I'm sure they are!   

The stereo mixes on the 2015 versions of 1 and 1+ are REMIXED, not just remastered.  This goes against what Apple said their intention was for the 2009 remasters campaign, unless they intended to first cash in on remastering the catalog and then years later finally remix the catalog where things would sound closer to the Yellow Submarine Songtrack (1999), the Anthology DVDs, or last years 1 and 1+ re-issue.  So if that is the plan, they are going to remix every album from the master multis and put them all out again.  They could have also easily given us mono and stereo on the same disc, but they wanted maximum profit.  And I can't blame them - it's easy money and the oldest trick in the book.  Put out the remasters first (not the remixes).  Put the stereo on their own, and a separate box for mono.  Years later they can release everything remixed and cash in again.

As to mono or stereo, I still prefer stereo, though there have been some tracks in mono that I prefer.  I have not heard the new 2014 mono vinyl, but I do not buy vinyl anymore. 

I always preferred Paperback Writer in mono.  The main guitar is far louder (Lennon's downstroked tremeloed chords have always been kind of relegated to the back), the bass is punchier and it just rocks harder.  However, the new remix on the 2015 "1" album brings everything together.  The new remixed stereo version has all the power of the mono version that I loved with the separation and clarity of a stereo version.  There won't always be tracks that can be remixed this way, and the earlier tracks with drums right or left may be tough to fix - but technology is catching up!

23 August 2016
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Ahhh Girl
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^ A nice splash in to the forumpool. Welcome, @Ram4.

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23 August 2016
10.57am
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Bongo said

The Void said

I wish I hadn't found out about this dexterisation whatnot because my curiosity is at some point going to lead me to spend even more time obsessing over tiny details! I imagine it was done because the originals sounded too primitivly recorded compared to what US studios are capable of then? 

Pretty well what Dave Dexter was thinking @ Capitol Records USA.

You can check out Capitol versions on YouTube, but the most striking dexterized songs on the top of my head right now is "She’s A Woman ” & “I Feel Fine ”.  See if you can find them on YouTube.  It’s just so much Treblier & echoey, that it’s noticeable right from the first note. Not all the dexterized versions are as prominent, but noticeable.

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In 1986 I bought Beatles '65.  I had been a fan around 40 years ago, but there were a few albums I had not heard.  Two of the tracks on it of course were the dexterized She's A Woman and I Feel Fine .  I had the dexterized I Feel Fine for years as it was on 1962-1966 so I was used to the reverb and I loved it.  She's A Woman was a track I had never heard.  For some reason, I absolutely couldn't get enough of She's A Woman - the reverbed to death stereo dexterized version.  For months it was my top played Beatles song.  I went to Beatlefest that summer (August 1986) here in Chicago and there I heard the real mix of She's A Woman .  I thought it sucked!  It was so limp and weak with no bite at all.  And I could hear piano clearly.  What was going on?  Well eventually I realized that the US version was the fraud and had been tampered with. 

Well, as far as I can say there are two US Capitol tracks that I will always listen to over the UK versions.  One is the stereo mix of I'm Looking Through You with the false start (that always feels missed when listening to the UK version) and the other is the US stereo mix of She's A Woman .  The mono mix of She's A Woman is similar, but with even more reverb.

Bongo mentioned this on page 1 - I noticed a while ago on the 2014 Capitol US Albums box that the stereo mix of She's A Woman and I Feel Fine on Beatles '65 are incorrect - they are the UK versions.  The mono mixes are correct - reverb city.  But on my Capitol Years Volume 1 box, they are definitely correct all the way.

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23 August 2016
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Welcome, Ram4. I'm enjoying your contributions so far. Nice to see that you enjoy some of the US versions. I prefer the US Rubber Soul to the UK version.

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23 August 2016
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Hi, thanks for the welcome!  Yeah, I always felt the US Rubber Soul was the one album that worked.  By taking away Drive My Car , Nowhere Man , If I Needed Someone and What Goes On and substituting I've Just Seen A Face and It's Only Love , the US version has a much more acoustic feel which was nice if you wanted the laid back feel.  The UK version is still stellar although What Goes On is probably the weak track (though I do love it) and doesn't quite fit.  Funny thing is it was the US version that Brian Wilson loved that motivated him to try and do something better - which became Pet Sounds.

25 December 2019
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Mono through headphones, to me, sounds like air sucked out of a hole and is an instant headache.

"Wide" stereo, on the other hand, reveals so many more details (which is what REALLY makes a recording come "alive") and is not a bothersome effect at all through a vintage (analog) system with large 3-way speakers.

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25 December 2019
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BeatOfTheBrass said
Mono through headphones, to me, sounds like air sucked out of a hole and is an instant headache.

"Wide" stereo, on the other hand, reveals so many more details (which is what REALLY makes a recording come "alive") and is not a bothersome effect at all through a vintage (analog) system with large 3-way speakers.

  

Finally, someone said it. Couldn't agree more, wide stereo (provided it's not done badly) is really awesome 

Oh, by the way, this post was made by The Hole Got Fixed!

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25 December 2019
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Dark Overlord
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But that's the problem, The Beatles stereo mixes were (for the most part) poorly done. On their first 2 albums, they stereo mix is essentially the multitracks with the instruments panned to the hard left and the vocals to the hard right. Starting with I Want To Hold Your Hand , they were able to record to 4 tracks making for good stereo mixes when the 4 tracks were used properly but then comes Rubber Soul and they decide to revert to putting the instruments on the hard left and vocals on the hard right. Starting with Revolver , they alternated between centered and panned vocals depending on the song up until 1968 when they finally got an 8 track machine at Abbey Road and they could record each instrument individually.

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25 December 2019
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This might be a bit off topic, but it does answer the question.

So recently I came up with the perfect advertisement for when and if they put the Beatles Mono box up on the steaming platforms.  It even works for advertising the box itself, but that's 10 years old so the former is more applicable.

So Person 1 is listening to music with only one ear bud in.  Person 2 comes up to P1 and asks what he is listening to.  P1 responds to P2 saying he's listening to the Beatles.  P2 questions him, saying, "doesn't the Beatles music sound weird with only one earbud in?". P1 then responds saying, "No it sounds fine because I'm listening to the Beatles in MONO!". Then the ad goes on to talk about the Beatles in Mono being put on the streaming platform and whatnot.

So I guess with the Mono recordings you can listen with only 1 earbud without missing some of the music.

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Dark Overlord said
But that's the problem, The Beatles stereo mixes were (for the most part) poorly done. On their first 2 albums, they stereo mix is essentially the multitracks with the instruments panned to the hard left and the vocals to the hard right. Starting with I Want To Hold Your Hand , they were able to record to 4 tracks making for good stereo mixes when the 4 tracks were used properly but then comes Rubber Soul and they decide to revert to putting the instruments on the hard left and vocals on the hard right. Starting with Revolver , they alternated between centered and panned vocals depending on the song up until 1968 when they finally got an 8 track machine at Abbey Road and they could record each instrument individually.

  

As long as your sitting in the "sweet spot" (perfectly between both speakers), then it doesn't matter as it sounds great whether it's panned hard, not panned hard or even mono.

 

Stereo still rules!

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20 January 2020
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I respect the mono format in terms of The Beatles (especially for the early albums) but I’m a stereo man all the way. Just a better listening experience. 

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