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 Post subject: Possible Brahms submission; acceptable sound quality?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 12:45 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2010 2:33 pm
Posts: 20
Hello,

Here is a live recording of me playing the first movement of Brahms's Sonata No. 1 in C major, back in 2006, when I was preparing for my Junior recital.

Now, I just found a program where I was able to separate the audio from the visual, as this was recorded via handycam. So, I'd like to know if this .mp3 is acceptable sound quality to submit pieces, as 1) I don't have a stand alone .mp3 recorder (though am still planning to get one soon, in order to submit recordings and am researching them) and 2) the first recordings that were accepted were done in an actual recording studio, so, that's why the sound quality was good (crisper than this, I'm afraid)
I have some pieces that were recorded like this that I'd like to try to submit, and to add to the library here...

So, again, to Monica and others, I'd like to know if this sound quality works...but again, it's a live recording, so please disregard any background noise, and I know some of the dynamic contrasts aren't as prominent, had it been recorded in a studio...

If this performance isn't accepted as a new submission, I'd like any comments on the performance of the piece or suggestions to improve my playing. It took me quite some time to learn this whole Sonata, and I'm wanting to relearn/record it at some point anyway, it being years later.

Thanks!

Vcp

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"The good man is the only excellent musician, because he gives forth a perfect harmony not with a lyre or other instrument but with the whole of his life." ~Plato


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 Post subject: Re: Possible Brahms submission; acceptable sound quality?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 2:15 am 
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Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2007 10:18 am
Posts: 97
Location: Toronto
Great interpretation! So, really, who cares about the sound! Mind you, I detect a weee bit of compression. Correct me if I'm wrong. Normalize, by all means, of course; but compression (if there is any) can always be dispensed with.

Again, I love this recording.

JG


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 Post subject: Re: Possible Brahms submission; acceptable sound quality?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 2:22 am 
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Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 4:43 pm
Posts: 916
Location: Brazil
hi, Vcp!

I'm not the most expert in sound quality (I would have accepted some recordings which the admins didn't). I **think** the sound is not acceptable for the site because it clips and has some points distorted (the louder parts).

the performance is really nice! I'd say it is in the slow side, but that doesn't matter! it is lively and convincingly played. you project a good variation of moods (I like your "mysterious" mood at 3:03, for example). I'm not also the best person to judge about the slips. most of what I could hear are in the development section (which means the outter sections seem more accurate, with almost no slip at all).

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 Post subject: Re: Possible Brahms submission; acceptable sound quality?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 3:03 am 
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Joined: Wed Jun 14, 2006 12:38 pm
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I do care about sound-quality, and like you already know, the sound here is not very good. It's swimmy, it clips, it's fuzzy. I've regretted putting up similar-sounding recordings in the past so I'm not sure if it should go up or not...

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my videos: http://www.youtube.com/user/monicapiano
my personal website: http://www.monicaalianello.com


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 Post subject: Re: Possible Brahms submission; acceptable sound quality?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 4:04 am 
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Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2010 7:28 am
Posts: 1250
Location: Springfield, Missouri, USA
Quote:
...I'm wanting to relearn/record it at some point anyway, it being years later.

Now that's what I'm looking forward to! I hope you do it because I don't think the quality of this recording is good enough. Just think of all that piano trying to fit in that HandyCam microphone. :shock:

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Eddy M. del Rio, MD
"A smattering will not do. They must know all the keys, major and minor, and they must literally 'know them backwards.'" - Josef Lhevinne


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 Post subject: Re: Possible Brahms submission; acceptable sound quality?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 4:32 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2010 2:33 pm
Posts: 20
Greetings! Thanks to those who commented...I feel a boost of confidence after reading the posts, lol! But I can see that there are differing opinions on this recording...I actually have this on my Youtube channel, and perhaps it should stay with both parts (video and audio) together....

But, I will try this technique of separation in recording with new submissions in my silent home (using the same handycam) and I bet the results will turn out better. (althouigh I can't say for the sharpness of the dynamic contrasts, as a handycam mic isn't as sensitive as a personal mp3 recorder/or even compare to the best form: a live performance!!)

Thank you Felipe, for your comments (and also on the other post about judging, btw, which I may respond to soon... :P ) and yes, I too did notice that it is a bit 'loud' and gets distorted, like when stereo speakers are too loud...

The program I'm using is Nero, the freeware version, and it seems to be the only video editing software that is the least complicated in order to make .mp3s. Again, I wish I had a nice recording studio at my disposal, or decent recording equipment, but alas, I'm still saving up my monies in hopes of getting a nice recorder. Was looking at the Edirol R-09 on Amazon.com, which is 'currently unavailable'..and I think is one of the more expensive models...would love any suggestions as to what anyone else uses that was/is reasonably priced...

To JG-thank you very much for your kind words!! I think I may be able to fiddle around with the compression rate...that may make a difference..may try to do research on audio files..terms like 'bit rate' and such escape me at the moment.

Again, I'm very appreciative of the replies...! I have the 2nd and 3rd movements as well from the same recital if anyone cares to hear them...but to Monica, I'm sorry there is so much fuzz and such (but what is meant by 'clips'??)

Vcp

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"The good man is the only excellent musician, because he gives forth a perfect harmony not with a lyre or other instrument but with the whole of his life." ~Plato


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 Post subject: Re: Possible Brahms submission; acceptable sound quality?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 5:06 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2010 2:33 pm
Posts: 20
Vcpianoman wrote:
The program I'm using is Nero, the freeware version,


Correction: the program I'm using is VideoPad, freeware, not Nero...!!

Anyway, here is a recording I made recently, at home, with the handycam, and trying this same separation technique. I know that Gillock isn't considered a classical composer, or is even right for the site to be posted as a submission (as he's probably classified as a teaching/pedagogy one) but I'm just using this piece as an example: is the sound quality just as bad as the Brahms? At least this piece is somewhat softer and less dense, so maybe it'll come off better. (and again, there isn't an audience).

Here is "Polynesian Nocturne" by William Gillock...

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"The good man is the only excellent musician, because he gives forth a perfect harmony not with a lyre or other instrument but with the whole of his life." ~Plato


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 Post subject: Re: Possible Brahms submission; acceptable sound quality?
PostPosted: Sat Feb 12, 2011 6:53 am 
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Joined: Mon Dec 27, 2010 1:11 am
Posts: 243
Location: Adelaide, Australia
From the way the noise level varies, and from the lack of dynamic contrasts, I'd guess that your handycam is automatically adjusting the recording level as it records. That is, when you play quietly it turns the level up, and when you play louder it turns the level down. Possibly this is a "feature" than you can disable. For me the recording quality of the Gillock is about the same as Brahms.

If I were to comment on the recording, I'd be mentioning things such as dynamic contrasts, shaping of phrases, voicing of chords--but it would be very unfair to criticise such things considering the recording quality--probably your performance was better than it sounds on this recording. I agree that ideally it would go a little faster. But it's a huge movement, and getting through the whole thing is already an impressive achievement.

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 Post subject: Re: Possible Brahms submission; acceptable sound quality?
PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 10:57 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 12, 2006 11:45 am
Posts: 9534
Location: Netherlands
Impressive and authoritative Brahms playing here, notwithstanding a few flubbed passages. But the fine nuances are hard to gauge with such a bad sound quality. Maybe time for you to incest in a decent mp3 recorder !
Nice piece by Gillock BTW. Maybe not great music, but charming. It seems to fit the handycam sound better than the Brahms (I guess it was a bit closer to you). In fact I think this sound is quite acceptable.

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Nothing is always absolutely so -- Sturgeon's law
Chris Breemer


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 Post subject: Re: Possible Brahms submission; acceptable sound quality?
PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 3:37 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2010 7:28 am
Posts: 1250
Location: Springfield, Missouri, USA
techneut wrote:
Maybe time for you to incest ...
(Emphasis added)
Hmm. Way too much information here! :lol: Gotcha.

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Eddy M. del Rio, MD
"A smattering will not do. They must know all the keys, major and minor, and they must literally 'know them backwards.'" - Josef Lhevinne


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 Post subject: Re: Possible Brahms submission; acceptable sound quality?
PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 5:49 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 12, 2006 11:45 am
Posts: 9534
Location: Netherlands
Ahaaaa *LOL*
That's the kind of thing I like teasing others with :D

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Nothing is always absolutely so -- Sturgeon's law
Chris Breemer


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 Post subject: Re: Possible Brahms submission; acceptable sound quality?
PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 6:50 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2010 7:28 am
Posts: 1250
Location: Springfield, Missouri, USA
techneut wrote:
Ahaaaa *LOL*
That's the kind of thing I like teasing others with :D

Precisely why I'm teasing you!

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Eddy M. del Rio, MD
"A smattering will not do. They must know all the keys, major and minor, and they must literally 'know them backwards.'" - Josef Lhevinne


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 Post subject: Re: Possible Brahms submission; acceptable sound quality?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 04, 2011 5:35 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2007 8:56 pm
Posts: 552
This was very beautiful. It really moved me.

Raymond


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