SACD fans?

JohnVF

Administrator
Staff member
I finally worked it out with CDJapan, their shipping calculator is showing the order total including the price of the discs, not just a shipping charge. So the $100 or so I was mistaking for the shipping charge is the estimated order total.

That said, shipping is still sky high with the lack of flights and COVID issues causing fewer employees to be more adequately spaced, apparently everything about it is more expensive right now for CDJapan, so it's not just the shipping that has been increased, but the handling as well.

They've also had on and off access to my favored method, which is EMS. Right now it's off again, so my only real choice at a similar cost to EMS was DHL. $25 to NY for the two Santana 7" mini LP sleeve SACDs culled from the quad tapes, plus two Blu-spec CD2 titles riding along (not pictured).

I went for it, not so much out of curiosity about the sound, I already have various good sounding versions of these albums including the MoFi SACDs, but more so for the limited collectible release aspect, and a slight bit of curiosity about those "BSCD2" discs too:

View attachment 33588
My digital buying now couldn't be more different than it was fifteen years ago. I used to just buy buy buy. Mostly used CDs. I lived down the street from a great record store and three times I week I'd be in there just buying things to try out. Now that I can try out by streaming, a lot of things that I would've purchased back then, doesn't get purchased. Instead I'm trying to think of what I want in a really special release, a collectible recording, or simply the best mastering. So I bought Forever Changes on SACD, seen above, even though I have it on vinyl and some sort of double-CD release. It's one of my favorite albums. I'm also buying some DCC and MOFI gold discs, because sometimes they show up as 'the ones to get' for their mastering. The Doors first album was the last physical digital disc I bought, for that reason: the Hoffman mastered DCC disc.

This way of buying isn't new to a lot of audiophiles but its kind of a new thing to me. I was in a "buy everything I want to hear more stuff!" mood for almost 20 years, now I don't really want to hear more, I just want something special.
 
Totally agree here - don't think I have bought more than a few LPs or SACD's since I signed up for Qobuz. It's made me a lot more selective in what I choose to purchase. There is only so much physical space to store media and I've long since run out.
 

Thermionics

Post Whore In Training
They sell CDs in the clearance shelves for usually two dollars. When they have tent sales the same clearance CDs are 0.50. They don't really distinguish between CDs and DVD As and SACDs. Blu Rays do end up in the Blu Ray section. Stuff ends up in clearance by not getting sold. Little if anything to do with what it is. They do have LPs there but I only look from a distance. I am not interested in buying any new LPs.

In the past year or two I have bought a wonderful quantity of Telarcs, Naxos, DGG, and other very interesting discs often for 1 or 2 dollars. I predict that eventually CDs will have the same kind of resurgence that vinyl is having now. I can see how server based audio has gotten popular.
Will have to go to Half-Price Books sometime. I've never mucked about with SACD, so will want to dip the proverbial toe in the waters before I invest any serious money in media...
 

MikeyFresh

Moderator
Staff member
I'm curious if anyone here has ever ordered from Stereo Sound Store in Japan?

Their site has no English translator, so you need to use the Chrome browser and translate on your end, however they do indicate they ship internationally.

Many of the titles are offered on a "reservation" or preorder basis much like a series of SACDs offered exclusively by Tower Records in Japan, however Tower will not ship internationally so the best you can do there is wait for resellers to crop up on eBay, or occasionally they even end up on Acoustic Sounds and Elusive Disc, albeit at $59 a pop.

These Stereo Sound Store exclusive SACD titles are about $46 each, and I see they also sell certain DSD256 titles on Blu-ray Disc-ROM and USB thumb drive at 11.2MHz, between $133 and $174.

dsdusb_sso.jpg

Some of the product descriptions don't say much about source tape provenance, while others do explicitly state that a 1st generation copy of the original master tape was used, and that was transferred to 11.2MHz DSD to create the digital master, while certain others fully admit the DSD was upsampled from 24/96 PCM.

Interesting stuff, but as with just about everything I want from Japan, high price of admission.
 
Totally agree here - don't think I have bought more than a few LPs or SACD's since I signed up for Qobuz. It's made me a lot more selective in what I choose to purchase.
My reasoning is that Qobuz is $12.50/month (paid yearly). When I was out buying one or two CDs per week from the mid 80s onward, I was bound to buy at least a couple of duds per month--$30 plus tax, out the door, for one track I liked or an album that I never could connect with. Hell, that even happened with many LPs over the years also. As a result, I now have boxes of "rejects" that I've never gotten rid of. Hundreds of dollars I'll never see again.

In that regard, streaming has saved me money. And the argument by some out there who "hate" streaming, saying they will never pay $15/month for it ("too expensive" 🙄), just falls completely flat in that light.

But then again, now that I think of it, that's a wash. Now I'll read about a new recording, find a recommendation online (reviews, in forums, etc.), have something pop up on one of my Pandora stations, then head over to Qobuz to listen. And cha-ching, more money out the door. And if I'm checking out one album by the artist, chances are I'll dip into other albums in his/her/their catalog. But at least now, after I've played it a few times to know if I'll like it, it will not have been a waste of money.
 

JohnVF

Administrator
Staff member
My reasoning is that Qobuz is $12.50/month (paid yearly). When I was out buying one or two CDs per week from the mid 80s onward, I was bound to buy at least a couple of duds per month--$30 plus tax, out the door, for one track I liked or an album that I never could connect with. Hell, that even happened with many LPs over the years also. As a result, I now have boxes of "rejects" that I've never gotten rid of. Hundreds of dollars I'll never see again.

In that regard, streaming has saved me money. And the argument by some out there who "hate" streaming, saying they will never pay $15/month for it ("too expensive" 🙄), just falls completely flat in that light.

But then again, now that I think of it, that's a wash. Now I'll read about a new recording, find a recommendation online (reviews, in forums, etc.), have something pop up on one of my Pandora stations, then head over to Qobuz to listen. And cha-ching, more money out the door. And if I'm checking out one album by the artist, chances are I'll dip into other albums in his/her/their catalog. But at least now, after I've played it a few times to know if I'll like it, it will not have been a waste of money.
I’d guess I’m in over ten grand in discs I maybe listened to all the way through once or twice. Putting them on a server where I could access individual tracks more easily helped recoup some of that, but I too find streaming a far cheaper proposition.

I’m more picky about which SACDs I buy. They’re albums I know I like
 

JohnVF

Administrator
Staff member
The Church Starfish (1988)
SACD coming May 31st from Intervention Records

View attachment 34079
  • Artist approved expanded edition, 18 tracks total, 8 B-side bonus tracks not on the original release, mastered Direct-to-DSD from the original analog master tapes assembled by Ryan K. Smith at Sterling Sound, Nashville.
I was about to preorder this on vinyl but I’ll get the SACD instead!
I saw them a few years ago, they’re still a good live band.
 

MikeyFresh

Moderator
Staff member
I was about to preorder this on vinyl but I’ll get the SACD instead!
I saw them a few years ago, they’re still a good live band.
Well the vinyl is a 100% analog mastered 2-LP set with the same bonus tracks, so that could very well end up being the definitive edition, albeit wait 'till sometime this summer and pony up an additional $10, then hope for a quiet flat pressing.
 

JohnVF

Administrator
Staff member
Well the vinyl is a 100% analog mastered 2-LP set with the same bonus tracks, so that could very well end up being the definitive edition, albeit wait 'till sometime this summer and pony up an additional $10, then hope for a quiet flat pressing.
The recording quality they captured on this recording is really good. I have a 12” 45rpm single of Destination that really shows the potential. Maybe I’ll get both? I love this album, it was a bit of a gateway drug for me when I was 18. A friend loaned me his CD to dub when I moved to a new city and fell into a new crowd. I had really been into an Ohio-brand of classic rock and this album really opened my ears.
 

JohnVF

Administrator
Staff member
I always like seeing production notes and tape details. This from the Elusive Disc page on the preorder for Starfish. I also like that...Tones on Tail is also on this tape? Daniel Ash playing with The Church would be fantastic.


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I’d guess I’m in over ten grand in discs I maybe listened to all the way through once or twice. Putting them on a server where I could access individual tracks more easily helped recoup some of that, but I too find streaming a far cheaper proposition.
I'm thinking more in terms of deciding what I purchase--streaming helps me weed out those albums I don't like enough to purchase. If I'd had streaming over the past 30 years to weed out the trash, I could probably pay for a lifetime subscription several times over.

If it's a regular listen, or a new artist release I've already decided on, I'm heading straight to the Qobuz store and purchasing it. Streaming could go away tomorrow and I'd have nothing, but the music I own will stay with me until I'm pushing up daisies.

Absolutely--putting everything on a server is the way to go. Access is so much easier, and sometimes I find one of the clunkers in my collection referred to or recommended due to another recording and I may give it another listen. In other words, those forgotten CDs may still get an occasional play (or cherry picked for the one or two tracks) if they're on a server. If not, it's not worth my effort to get out of my seat to find it and play it.

The ripping can be the hurdle. But with my setup, I can install any number of optical drives in my computer and use batch CD ripping so I can swap discs in and out 1-2-3. I can go through 40-50 an hour, maybe more if I pushed myself and it was my sole activity. (I can do it while working, for instance.)
 

JohnVF

Administrator
Staff member
I'm thinking more in terms of deciding what I purchase--streaming helps me weed out those albums I don't like enough to purchase. If I'd had streaming over the past 30 years to weed out the trash, I could probably pay for a lifetime subscription several times over.

If it's a regular listen, or a new artist release I've already decided on, I'm heading straight to the Qobuz store and purchasing it. Streaming could go away tomorrow and I'd have nothing, but the music I own will stay with me until I'm pushing up daisies.

Absolutely--putting everything on a server is the way to go. Access is so much easier, and sometimes I find one of the clunkers in my collection referred to or recommended due to another recording and I may give it another listen. In other words, those forgotten CDs may still get an occasional play (or cherry picked for the one or two tracks) if they're on a server. If not, it's not worth my effort to get out of my seat to find it and play it.

The ripping can be the hurdle. But with my setup, I can install any number of optical drives in my computer and use batch CD ripping so I can swap discs in and out 1-2-3. I can go through 40-50 an hour, maybe more if I pushed myself and it was my sole activity. (I can do it while working, for instance.)
That was my main use of Napster when it was a thing. An album would come out, I'd download some tracks from Napster to get a sort of gauge of whether it was worth buying an album, then go buy it. My record store at the time also had a policy where you could listen to any disc before buying. That only lasted a couple of years... Napster went away and that world got more shady, and I moved and no longer had a sample-everything record store. So my hit to miss ratio on new discs went horribly awry.

Streaming fixed all that. If I really like something on streaming, I buy it on vinyl or SACD now.
 

MikeyFresh

Moderator
Staff member
In for Girlfriend and 100% Fun, so I guess I know what to do, huh?
Since the March release of Altered Beast I'd been looking around for another disc or two to buy along with it to spread the shipping cost across more than one album.

Last weekend I found a suitable candidate, and today Elusive Disc shipped my order:

StillCrazy.jpg
 

adaug

Awaiting Updated Member Status.
At their warehouse here in Chicago they have a large back room that's a record store along with some demo and B-stock/closeout gear. It's not really advertised that I can tell but it's definitely still there as I went back before the pandemic hit. They had a lot of used records but also a lot of MFSL stuff. I bought a few SACDs and albums, I think they were there and discounted because the jackets weren't perfect..some of them were also closeouts. They used to have a big sale once a year, a kind of open house with a ton of b-stock, open box, whatever gear and that's how I found out about it.
unfortunately not yet re-opened after its pandemic closure. should be a lot of stuff in there when it does re-open.
 

JohnVF

Administrator
Staff member
Thank you! I just took advantage of that and bought a few discs. I hope it gets here faster than the book I ordered from London in October (still waiting.... on a slow boat ....). :)
These discs showed up a bit ago, months after I bought them. I’d completely forgotten about them so it was a nice surprise. And the sound great.
 

JohnVF

Administrator
Staff member
unfortunately not yet re-opened after its pandemic closure. should be a lot of stuff in there when it does re-open.
Last I checked with them in the summer you could schedule a looky loo but maybe that’s been backed off of. Can I show them my half-vaccinated card?
 
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