Audio quality

Comments on Audio quality

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#16 - Quote - Permalink
Posted Oct 05, 2011 - 6:08 PM:

Paul wrote:
On the audio quality topic: if anyone can definitely tell me that they have a better quality MP3 of an episode than the one I have posted on the site, let me know and I'll replace it.

Greetings Paul,

The CDs I purchased from First Generation Radio Archives were audio CDs. I have ripped these onto my computer in FLAC (lossless) format, but they can be converted into mp3. Some are definitely better than what is here, some are slightly better, and some are just different - neither better nor worse. I'd be happy to convert them to mp3 at whatever bitrate you want and post them on my website for you to download (easiest way for you to get them, I suppose). Keep in mind, that this is merely my opinion. Different people have different opinions about what is "better" and what is not. You won't hurt my feelings if, after listening to these shows, you decide they are all junk. wink

flac Definitely Better
Ep 1 - Nothing Behind the Door
Ep 6 - I Remember Tomorrow
Ep 7 - Inquest
Ep 8 - Bring Me to Life
Ep 64 - The Third Man's Story
Ep 82 - Portrait of a Character
Ep 85 - Northern Lights
Ep 105 - Pavane
Ep 106 - Quiet, Please!

Slightly Better - flac slightly better than yours, but mp3 (32 kbps) from OTRR slightly better than the flac.
ep 65 - Symphony in D Minor

Toss Up - flac slightly worse than yours, but mp3 from OTRR slightly better (32kbps)
ep 35 - The Pathetic Fallacy

flac slightly worse - higher gain with a voice buzz
ep 37 - Whence Came You?


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#17 - Quote - Permalink
Posted May 22, 2012 - 5:35 PM:

I just stumbled on to the site when doing some research for a discography I'm putting together of old time radio released on lp records in the 70s and 80s. Goldin's Radiola records, as you're probably aware, released "Thing on Fourable Board" with an episode of "Escape" on one of their early lps.

I maintain a blog, btw, of old time radio, doing digital dubs from my transcription collection, .

I've tried listening to some of the "Quiet Please" episodes floating around and, indeed, the quality can be pretty bad. The problem I hear with most is that they sound like mutli-generational tape dubs of discs that weren't in good shape in the first place.

I'm curious what happened to the original discs that survive of the series.

Currently, some restoration work could be done on the shows that could improve the sound, but only if the original discs could go through a redub.

For transcriptions in my collection, it's helpful if you can capture the sound in stereo at a high bitrate. With a stereo signal, both sides of the groove wall can be processed to eliminate pops and ticks. The higher bit rate allows the software to be more "fine grained" in sorting out the noise from the program material.

Working with digital files in mp3 format, especially if they're from tape or have already been mucked with, won't really improve the sound.

The problem with "Quiet Please" is that it's a copyright "orphan", so there's no one with a commercial interest in preserving the show. In addition, if you redubbed the original discs and did minimal noise reduction on them, it would run about $50 to $100 per disc at a professional facility with the right equipment and expertise.

If the original discs could be located for a redub job, someone might work through a non-profit archives to get grant funding to get the job done.

This really should be a priority. They're likely recorded on 16" lacquers and many of the instantaneous discs from the otr era are deteriorating. Even if they suffered from damage inflicted from handling through the years, they're likely starting to dry up and crack, depending on how they've been stored through the years.
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#18 - Quote - Permalink
Posted May 24, 2012 - 11:09 PM:

The surviving discs that were in Ernest Chappell's possession are at the Paley Center in New York. Here's an excerpt of a circa 2009 post in the OTR Digest (I didn't correct the typos) from Don Aston of a collectors' group called the West Coast Syndicate:

... We formed in 1972 and were instrumental in putting much of the OTR available today into circulation.

I found the Quiet Please episodes at the University of Florida. A work Study student dubbed the discs. The University would not allow any outside people to touch them. The Work Study Student did not clean or even bother to wipe off the discs,. He just put them on a turntable and dropped the needle. That is the reason so much noise is on many of the early surving episodes.

Mrs. Chappell was going to let us, Randy [Eidemiller] and Me, copy the discs, but negotiations dragged on and on. Then the discs would up in the OTR Museum in New York City. They do not cooperate with anyone as far as I know. ...

I love "rand’s esoteric otr" and am glad to see you back in action.
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