Remastering

  • 23 November 2021
  • 4 replies
  • 36 views

I see a lot of tracks on Deezer that are “Remastered”.  Who does this remastering?  Presumably a lot of these are vinyl records and the most common problem encountered when digitising vinyl is a loss of some mid & low range frequency & the resulting playback can be a little shrill or tinny.  I have a very good audio sytem, good at reproducing mid/low range frequency, but some of the track remastering is so low quality that it can’t compensate for it.  There are some good, free-to-use audio softwares that can compensate for this.  I use Audacity & it is very good at overcoming reduced mid/low range & when the track is fully remastered using it my audio will then reproduce almost identical sound as the original vinyl.

Will be interested to read comments from other members who have noticed this problem.


4 replies

Userlevel 7
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Hey @Spuckler 

The content of the entire music catalog is supplied by the respective publishers or the music industry. The remastered versions are also delivered from there. Deezer does not change / edit songs.

 dee_dirk,

Thankyou for that fast response & useful to know who does the remastering.  It does sound as though they are just crashing them out, raw digitised.  Shame.

Userlevel 7
Badge +6

Hardly anyone directly remasters from vinyl records in the music industry, the studios doing the remastering use digital master tapes and HDDs if available or the analogue ones. It may happen that if even these are not available anymore due to some storage facility burning down in the past that they use the vinyl albums, but that is not the rule. But then they would use specialised software for that process, not Audacity which I also use for our band demos. :wink:

All streaming sites including Deezer receive the “Remastered” albums from their distributors, also the lossy encoded versions, as far as I know.

Userlevel 1
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“Remastering” often is used as a term to describe what is both a way to milk money out of fans (when bands don’t produce new stuff, “remaster”s are a way to re-publish the same old material over and over again) - and of “remixing” (often done by the original producers to, see above, milk money out of old material).

A “real remaster” (which you really don’t see that often) would try to change the acustic “makeup” of a publication to match with different playback devices, since “mastering” is the process of shaping the mix into something that “sounds good” (or “as intended”) on different devices (from mobile phone speakers through car audio up to high end home theatre setups). Mastering is an art of its own, even a “perfect mix” can be ruined by a bad mastering.

So, “remastering” *should* be something that tries to make (older) music “sound better” on modern devices. Unfortunately, often the material available to do the remaster just does not meet the technical requirements for this, so (some) producers use what uneducated journalists call “AI” (basically, statistics based forumlae) to introduce harmonics, subharmonics and even vocal parts that are lost.

That can, sometimes, lead to:

> … but some of the track remastering is so low quality that it can’t compensate for it …

… because, most of this “AI” nonsense is really just this: nonsense. It’s based on “machine learning”, but since the material used to train the models has been preselected by humans, most of it is extremely biased (this is a common problem with “AI” based “human resources management”, where you just can’t get an “unbiased” set of training material to be “fair”).
And it HAS to be human-preselected, because, after all, what we want to get in the end is “sounds better”, where “better” is a very subjective thing.

 

 

To sum it up: In a perfect world a “remaster” would enhance the audio quality for some devices but MAY introduce problems with others. In the real world, a “remaster” usually is making money.

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