The copy we are selling is similar to the one pictured above.
Side One: Mint Minus Minus*
Side Two: Mint Minus Minus
- A STUNNING copy of this strikingly original work with Nearly Triple Plus (A++ to A+++) sound from the first note to the last - just shy of our Shootout Winner
- It's also fairly quiet at Mint Minus Minus, a grade that even our most well-cared-for vintage classical titles have trouble playing at
- This spectacular recording is big, clear, rich, dynamic, transparent and energetic - HERE is the analog sound we love
- We've auditioned quite a number of recordings of the work, and as far as we are concerned, on the right pressing this is the best sounding version that exists on vinyl - the orchestral power on display is positively PHENOMENAL
- "With the direction of Eugen Jochum and the bonus of the incomparable rich, powerful voice of baritone Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, this 1968 performance is a classic, and very probably the best, recording of the opera."
100% Money Back Guarantee on all Hot Stampers
FREE Domestic Shipping on all LP orders over $150
*NOTE: There is a stitch that plays 16 times lightly about 3/4 of the way into side 1.
These Nearly White Hot Stamper pressings have top-quality sound that's often surprisingly close to our White Hots, but they sell at substantial discounts to our Shootout Winners, making them a relative bargain in the world of Hot Stampers ("relative" meaning relative considering the prices we charge). We feel you get what you pay for here at Better Records, and if ever you don't agree, please feel free to return the record for a full refund, no questions asked.
This vintage Deutsche Grammophon pressing has the kind of Tubey Magical Midrange that modern records can barely BEGIN to reproduce. Folks, that sound is gone and it sure isn't showing signs of coming back. If you love hearing INTO a recording, actually being able to "see" the performers, and feeling as if you are sitting in the studio with the band, this is the record for you. It's what vintage all analog recordings are known for -- this sound.
If you exclusively play modern repressings of vintage recordings, I can say without fear of contradiction that you have never heard this kind of sound on vinyl. Old records have it -- not often, and certainly not always -- but maybe one out of a hundred new records do, and those are some pretty long odds.
What The Best Sides Of Orff's Modern Masterpiece Have To Offer Is Not Hard To Hear
- The biggest, most immediate staging in the largest acoustic space
- The most Tubey Magic, without which you have almost nothing. CDs give you clean and clear. Only the best vintage vinyl pressings offer the kind of Tubey Magic that was on the tapes in 1968
- Tight, note-like, rich, full-bodied bass, with the correct amount of weight down low
- Natural tonality in the midrange -- with all the instruments having the correct timbre
- Transparency and resolution, critical to hearing into the three-dimensional studio space
No doubt there's more but we hope that should do for now. Playing the record is the only way to hear all of the qualities we discuss above, and playing the best pressings against a pile of other copies under rigorously controlled conditions is the only way to find a pressing that sounds as good as this one does.
What to Listen For
Number one: Too many instruments and voices jammed into too little space in the upper midrange. When the tonality is shifted-up, even slightly, or there is too much compression, there will be too many elements vying for space in the upper part of the midrange, causing congestion and a loss of clarity.
With the more solid sounding copies, the lower mids are full and rich. Above them, the next "level up" so to speak, there's plenty of space in which to fit all the instruments and voices comfortably, without piling them on top of one another as so often happens on the records we play. On the better copies the upper midrange space does not get overloaded and overwhelmed with musical information.
Number Two: edgy vocals, which is related to Number One above. Many copies will reveal some edge on the vocals, but the best copies keep the edge well under control or do away with entirely, without sounding compressed, dark, dull or smeary.
(As an aside, those last four adjectives you see above would describe more than 95 percent of the Heavy Vinyl pressings we have had the misfortune to audition over the last twenty years or so. How so-called audiophiles can tolerate the blatantly obvious shortcomings found on these modern records is beyond us? We cannot understand it, and we likely never will.)
The highest quality equipment will play the loudest and most difficult-to-reproduce passages of this amazing recording with virtually no edge, grit or grain, even at very loud levels.
What We're Listening For On Carmina Burana
- Energy for starters. What could be more important than the life of the music?
- The Big Sound comes next -- wall to wall, lots of depth, huge space, three-dimensionality, all that sort of thing.
- Then transient information -- fast, clear, sharp attacks, not the smear and thickness so common to these LPs.
- Powerful bass -- which ties in with good transient information, also the issue of frequency extension further down.
- Next: transparency -- the quality that allows you to hear deep into the soundfield, showing you the space and air around all the instruments.
- Extend the top and bottom and voila, you have The Real Thing -- an honest to goodness Hot Stamper.
A Big Group of Musicians Needs This Kind of Space
One of the qualities that we don't talk about on the site nearly enough is the SIZE of the record's presentation. Some copies of the album just sound small -- they don't extend all the way to the outside edges of the speakers, and they don't seem to take up all the space from the floor to the ceiling. In addition, the sound can often be recessed, with a lack of presence and immediacy in the center.
Other copies -- my notes for these copies often read "BIG and BOLD" -- create a huge soundfield, with the music positively jumping out of the speakers. They're not brighter, they're not more aggressive, they're not hyped-up in any way, they're just bigger and clearer.
And most of the time those very special pressings are just plain more involving. When you hear a copy that does all that -- a copy like this one -- it's an entirely different listening experience.
Mint Minus Minus is about as quiet as any vintage pressing will play, and since only the right vintage pressings have any hope of sounding good on this album, that will most often be the playing condition of the copies we sell. (The copies that are even a bit noisier get listed on the site are seriously reduced prices or traded back in to the local record stores we shop at.)
Those of you looking for quiet vinyl will have to settle for the sound of other pressings and Heavy Vinyl reissues, purchased elsewhere of course as we have no interest in selling records that don't have the vintage analog magic of these wonderful recordings.
If you want to make the trade-off between bad sound and quiet surfaces with whatever Heavy Vinyl pressing might be available, well, that's certainly your prerogative, but we can't imagine losing what's good about this music -- the size, the energy, the presence, the clarity, the weight -- just to hear it with less background noise.
A Must Own Classical Record
This Demo Disc Quality recording should be part of any serious Classical Music Collection. Others that belong in that category can be found here.
Fortuna Imperatrix Mundi
- O Fortuna
- Fortune Plango Vulnera
I Primo Vere
- Veris Leta Facies
- Omnia Sol Temperat
- Ecce Gratum
Uf Dem Anger
- Floret Silva Nobilis
- Chramer, Gip Die Varwe Mir
- Swaz Hie Gat Umbe
- Chume, Chum Geselle Min
- Swaz Hie Gat Umbe
- Were Diu Werlt Alle Min
- Estuans Interius
- Olim Lacus Colueram
- Ego Sum Abbas
- In Taberna Quando Sumus
- Amor Volat Undique
- Dies, Nox Et Omnia
- Stetit Puella
- Circa Mea Pectora
- Si Puer Cum Puellula
- Veni, Veni, Venias
- In Trutina Mentis Dubia
- Tempus Est Iocundum
Blanziflor Et Helena
- Ave Formosissima
Fortuna Imperatrix Mundi
- O Fortuna
If you need to get motivated to get up and move, raise your spirits, or just get your foot to tapping, this is the recording for you. Once you start to listen to this opera you can understand why an excerpt from "Fortuna Imperatrix Mundi" is played at some sporting events to get the team and crowd into the game.
With the direction of Eugen Jochum and the bonus of the incomparable rich, powerful voice of baritone Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, this 1968 performance is a classic, and very probably the best, recording of the opera. The reproduction quality from the original Deutsche Grammophon recording is clear and clean.
- "Tabletop of Chaos," Amazon Reviewer