High iidclitq - American Radio History

High iidclitq - American Radio History
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High áîidclilq
T H
N
M A G A Z I
E
This Issue. It
is now almost exactly two
years since Arturo Toscanini conducted his
last NBC concert in Carnegie Hall and
announced his retirement. Since then very
little has been heard from him or about
him, though there have been fleeting
TV glimpses of him disembarking from
airplanes, and news photos showing him
relaxing in the Italian sun. And, of course,
recordings made under his baton have continued to issue forth from RCA Victor's
reservoir. Still the question has remained:
how could such a man endure retirement?
What would he do? It is hard enough for
a retiring stockbroker or an insurance
salesman to abandon his old nine -to -five
activity. But Toscanini's entire waking life,
in latter years, was absorbed in music making; he ate, drank, and breathed music.
Apparently the forced cessation was, indeed, a dreadful blow to him. But, even
at eighty- seven, he had the vigor and fortitude to recover from it. This is what makes
Richard Gardner's account of "The Riverdale Project" so marvelously heartening, as
you will agree when you read it. We
and you
are fortunate that the recording
engineer assigned to work with Toscanini,
when he decided he wanted to work again,
was a man as sensitive and literate as
Mr. Gardner. We also acknowledge, gratefully, the cordial co- operation of Mr.
Walter Toscanini, Maestro's son and manager, several of whose photographs adorn
the article.
Next Issue. R. D. Darrell begins in May
a prerecorded tape column, untitled as yet,
which will be a regular feature in the
Records in Review section.
-
-
CHARLES FOWLER,
Publisher
JOHN M. CONLY, Editor
Managing Editor
J. GORDON HOLT, Technical Editor
Roy LINDSTROM, Art Director
Assistant Editors
ROY H. HOOPES, JR.,
MIRIAM D. MANNING; JOAN GRIFFITHS
E
F O R
M U S
1
L
C
I
T
S
E
N
E R S
April 1956
Volume 6 Number 4
Listener's Bookshelf, by R. D. Darrell
4
AUTHORitatively Speaking
15
Noted With Interest
16
Letters
24
Swap -a- Record
46
As The Editors See It
51
The Riverdale Project, by Richard B. Gardner
An account of a man at work in retirement
"Sound, sans Crack or
Flaw..."
-
53
Arturo Toscanini.
by J. M. Kucera
Could Shakespeare have been a
57
fi -man?
Equal Rights for the Percussionist, by Harold Farberman
A
58
protest from the "noisy corner" of the orchestra.
Right in the Middle of Your Pianissimo, by James G. Deane
..
6o
Some overdue remarks about record surfaces.
The Post -Ultimate Amplifier, by Helmholtz A. Watt
62
Did someone say nineteen output tubes?
Music Makers, by Roland Gelait
67
Record Section
71-105
Your
Record
Records in Review; Dialing Your Disks; Building
Library; The Orchestral Music of Brahms, by C. G. Burke.
Tested In the Home
107
Harman Kardon "Counterpoint" FM Tuner, "Trend" ControlUnit- Amplifier, "Recital" and "Festival" Tuner- Control-UnitAmplifiers; Audiogersh Miratwin Cartridges; Miller 595
Tuner; Kelly Ribbon Tweeter; Walco "Balanced Sound" Kit;
Hi -Fi Slumber Switch; Interelectronics "Coronation" 85 Con solette and 400 Amplifier.
New York Editor
Contributing Editors
Professional Directory
125
C. G. BURKE
R. D. DARRELL
JAMES HINTON, JR.
CORA R. HOOPES
Audio Forum
129
Trader's Marketplace
136
Advertising Index
137
ROLAND GELATT,
ROBERT CHARLES MARSH
Manager
BUCK, JR., Circulation
Director
WARREN B. SYER, Business
SEAVER B.
Branch Offices (Advertising only): New York:
Room 600, 6 East 39th Street.
Telephone:
Murray Hill 5-6332. Fred C. Michalove, Eastern
Manager. - Chicago: John R. Rutherford and Associates, 230 East Ohio St., Chicago, Ill. Telephone:
Whitehall 4-6715.- Los Angeles: 1052 West 6th
Street. Telephone: Madison 6 -1371. Edward Brand,
West Coast Manager.
High Fidelity Magazine is published monthly by Audiocom, Inc., at Great Barrington, Mass. Telephone:
Great Barrington 1300. Editorial, publication, and circulation offices at: The Publishing House, Great
Barrington, Mass. Subscriptions: $6.00 per year in the United States and Canada. Single copies: 60 cents
each. Editorial contributions will be welcomed by the editor. Payment for articles accepted will be arranged
prior to publication. Unsolicited manuscripts should be accompanied by return postage. Entered as
second -class matter April 27, 1951 at the post office at Great Barrington, Mass., under the act of March 3,
1879. Additional entry at the post office, Pittsfield, Mass. Member Audit Bureau of Circulation. Printed
in the U. S. A. by the Ben Franklin Press, Pittsfield, Mass. Copyright 1956 by Audiocom, Inc. The cover
design and contents of High Fidelity magazine are fully protected by copyrights and must not be reproduced in any manner.
APRIL 1956
3
www.americanradiohistory.com
For Every
Listener's Bookshelf
LISTENERS
by R. D. Darrell
BOOKSHELF
TI
1ifji
1f:ß1111)
READER
-
FOR the past four years the most
literate and informative writing on
the subject of sound reproduction
has appeared in High Fidelity Magazine. Now, for those of you who
might have missed some of High Fidelity's articles and for those of you
who have requested that they be
preserved in permanent form, High
Fidelity's Managing Editor, Roy H.
Hoopes, Jr., has selected 26 of then.
for inclusion in a HIGH FIDELITY
READER. The introduction was
written by John M. Conly.
ALTHOUGH the READER is not
intended as a "layman's guide" to
high fidelity, it tells you everything
you need to know, and perhaps a
little more, for achieving good
sound reproduction.
INCLUDED in the READER are
articles by:
Roy F. Allison
Richard W. Lawton
Peter Bartók
Theodore Lindenberg
John W. CampbellThomas Lucci
L. F. B. Carini
Joseph Marshall
Abraham Cohen Gilbert Plass
Emory Cook
R. S. Rummell
Eleanor Edwards Paul Sampson
Charles Fowler
David Sarser
Irving M. Fried Glen Southworth
Chuck Gerhardt Fernando Valenti
Gus Jose
Edward T. Wallace
F. A. Kuttner
Harry L. Wynn
ONLY $3.50
I
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
Publishing House
Great Barrington, Mass.
Enclosed please find $
Please send me
copies of
THE HIGH FIDELITY READER
NAME
ADDRESS
L_
4
NO C.O.D.'s please
(PUBLISHED BY HANOVER HOUSE)
_-
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and
LIVE
or at least Read
Learn! I have just enlarged my
vocabulary with a formidable fifty -cent
word, which, although it's been around
since 1836 by testimony of the Shorter
Oxford Dictionary, is brand -new to
me. It's "propaedeutic ": derived from
the Greek for "to teach beforehand ";
hence meaning (as an adjective) "pertaining to preliminary instruction"
or (as a noun) "a subject or study
which forms an introduction to an
art or science, or to more advanced
study generally."
I wish this term didn't sound quite
so grandiloquently academic, for it
fills a real need as a precise label for
what is perhaps the fastest growing
branch of literature
or journalism
of our day: that devoted to unveiling the mysteries of the arts and
sciences with which our lives have
become inextricably involved, but of
whose techniques and terminologies
we too often have little more than
a vague understanding.
Obviously, a large proportion of the
music and audio books discussed in
this column are essentially propaedeutic in nature, although up to now I've
been able to describe them only ap-
-
-
proximately as "primers," "introductory surveys," and the like. My predicament, indeed, has been much the
same as that of the countryman (in
Ray Noble's memorable HMV disk divertissement of the Thirties, In the
Bushes at the Bottom of the Garden)
who responded to the BBC lecturer's
"Ah, Anno Domini creeps on one!"
with "Aye, they're creepin' on me too,
but I never knew the Latin name for
them!"
Well, now I know it
or at least
the word the incredibly foresighted
Greeks had for just such books as
those on "rudiments of musicianship"
discussed last month and a batch of
both musical and audio "introductions" currently at hand. As a matter
of fact, it was in one of the latter,
Robert Stevenson's Music Before the
Classic Era (St. Martin's Press,
-
$4.50) , that I first stared on the term
"propaedeutic" itself. I should hasten
to add, however, that it appears only
in Stevenson's preface; throughout the
I 8 i -page text proper he tries hard,
if not always successfully, to forget
that he is a professor and to remember
that he is writing not for professional
musicians or scholars but for the socalled "general" reader. His intention
is both sensible and pertinent, for
thanks to recordings
there is today,
for the first time, something approaching a mass audience for `old" music;
yet probably no segment of the total
musical repertory is more lacking in
background information intelligible to
that audience. Stevenson may have
little really new to say, but to anyone
who has not delved into the authoritative specialized studies, that little
is a whole lot more (and more reliable) than anything likely to be encountered elsewhere.
His discussion of the still almost
completely mysterious subject of ancient music should be particularly
valuable not only in offsetting the
usual popular misconceptions, but also
in treating with admirable clarity the
peculiar obscurities of medieval and
renaissance music. On a few points
he may disregard the latest revisions
of musicological canons, but on the
other hand he contributes several notably fresh and illuminating insights.
Stevenson's explanation of the seeming "remoteness" of the music by
Palestrina and his contemporaries is
the best I have ever seen, and his explanations for the comparative failure
in effectiveness of most recorded performances of sixteenth -century polyphonic works are extremely provocative
surely suggesting to any alert
audiophile that "stereo" recordings
may well provide the key to restoring
this music's original sonal magic.
-
-
-
Opera Without Nonsense
Straightforward as Professor StevenContinued on page 7
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
BOOKSHELF
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Continued front page 4
ALLIED'S own HIGH FIDELITY
son's valuable little book is, its "general reader" must be something more
than a complete novice, since even
here a considerable degree of previous
musical experience is tacitly assumed.
On this score, Music Before the Classic
Era is only relatively "propaedeutic"
as in comparison, say, with a
"scholarly" study. Writing for the
true general reader, for whom no previous musical grounding can be supposed, is a much trickier business
and seldom is achieved so skillfully
that it can be read with profit both
by the complete novices for whom it
is intended and by those already
equipped with at least a smattering
of knowledge. To one of the few
writers who has succeeded in a work
of pure propaedeutics (Nicolas Slonimsky, author of the Road to Music
cited last month) , I am now delighted
to add another who has solved the
same problem no less effectively in
a somewhat different area and with
somewhat different methods.
This discovery is Lionel Salter in
Going to the Opera ( Philosophical
Library, $2.75), which I suspect was
written purportedly for children, since
it seems to be a companion work to
the same writer's Going to a Concert,
published in 195o by Phoenix House,
London, in a series of "Excursions for
Young People." The American publishers of the present work give no
hint, however, that it should be considered as other than an adult book
and they are quite right; for like
Slonimsky's Road, this Going to the
Opera has nothing of the mawkish
writing -down ordinarily, and justly, associated with "juveniles." It can be
read with both pleasure and profit
by anyone, and ideally it should be
made available in a cheap paperback
edition easily accessible to the large
audience its usefulness and merits
richly deserve.
Some regular readers of this column
well may be startled at such praise
from one who certainly has made
no secret of a violent disdain for
"opera books" in general. I picked
up this i6o -page booklet reluctantly;
noted its rather unattractive British
typography and narrow margins with
a sneer; glanced at its excellently reproduced eighteen photographs with
suddenly aroused interest; and then
began to read the text with mounting
Continued on next page
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APRIL 1956
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Continued from preceding page
incredulity as I discovered it not only
entirely free from the usual buncombe,
but solidly packed with novel and
highly pertinent information. Salter
recounts no opera "stories" and shows
no trace of a stage -door- Johnny attitude toward opera stars. He simply
tells, in lucid non -technical terms,
exactly what happens when an opera
is planned, written, and produced; who
is concerned ( not excluding backstage
sceneshifters and electricians) and just
what their functions are; how operas
of different historical periods and geographical locales differ and why; and
to what extent the experience of opera
via records, films, and television varies
from that gained in actual performances.
Its an amazing little book, both in
what it does and in what it shrewdly
makes no attempt to do. Indeed Salter
is so persuasive that for once in my
life I listened without protest to arguments for performing foreign operas
in English translations
and was
almost, if not quite, convinced.
-
Hi -Fi at the Supermarket
far, unfortunately, no Salter or
Slonimsky has revealed an effective
abecedarian approach to the elements
of audio. But the rush to capitalize
on the extensive public interest in
( and ignorance of ) "high fidelity"
has resulted in a mushrooming literature of which perhaps the most novel
type
and certainly the most widely
circulated
is the lavishly illustrated
paper-bound, combination "catalogue"
and "guide" dispensed by supermarkets and newstands. I think the
first of these were Donald C. Hoefler's
Hi -Fi Manual (Fawcett, 1954, 75¢;
later reissued in a hardcover revised
edition by Arco, $2.00) and the
anonymous Thrilling New Sounds
High Fidelity (Trend, 1954, 75¢).
These must have had some commercial
success at least, for more of the
same general type keep coming: another by Hoefler, Low Cost Hi-Fi
(Fawcett, 75ç; also from Arco in
hardcovers, $2.00) ; another anonymous Trend book, High Fidelity
Home Music Systems (75 ç) ; and
most recently-the Martin Mayer and
John M. Conly Hi -Fi (Maco, 75¢;
also from Random House in hardcovers, $2.95).
Continued on page ro
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HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
ORCHESTRA
HALL
PHILADELPHIA,
FEBRUARY 13,
1956
THE
OCCASION
OF
THE
HIGH
FIDELITY
CONCERT
AND
SOUNDORAMA
An Historic Event In High Fidelity
MADE POSSIBLE BY THE JOINT EFFORTS OF
TH 1,
AMPEX
MAGNETIC RECORDERS
ír
Jensen
IEISHEK
HIGH FIDELITY
LOUDSPEAKER
HIGH QUALITY AMPLIFIERS
TUNERS, AUDIO CONTROLS
SYSTEMS
THE EVENING of February 13, 1956, the audience at the Academy of
Music in Philadelphia witnessed another milestone in the technological
progress of the reproduction of sound. Part of the regular program of the orchestra's
concert that evening was recorded through FISHER Master Audio Controls and
Amplifiers working in conjunction with AMPEX Tape Recorders. The results were
immediately played back for the audience through a group of JENSEN Imperial
loudspeaker systems. The music was recorded in standard monaural, as well as
stereophonic techniques. The results were thrilling. But the great significance of this
event is that the amplification, recording and speaker equipment employed there was
of a type being used today in thousands of American homes. You, too, can duplicate
the quality of this performance in your own home. The participating manufacturers
extend a cordial invitation to you and your family to visit your high fidelity equipment dealer. He will be glad to show you the instruments that made history in
an event that will long live in the
Philadelphia on the night of February 13, 1956
memory of those who were there. Descriptive literature is available from your dealer.
ON
EQUIPMENT AND CONTROL CENTER
-
THE PHILADELPHIA SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
FEBRUARY 13, 1956
HIGH FIDELITY CONCERT
FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE ORCHESTRA'S PENSION FUND
APRIL 1956
9
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Like most high- fidelity aficionados
I'm of two minds about such booklets:
one delights in their energetic carrying of the gospel to the heathen; the
other bitterly resents the inevitable
dilution and commercialization of that
gospel when it is preached in such
( necessarily? )
crude terms. Yet we
always can comfort ourselves with
the thought that these works could
be a great deal worse than they usually
are; that generally they prove to be
better than they look at first glance;
and that at their not infrequent best
they do convey a great deal of useful
information. Most importantly, perhaps, they distribute this information
( and at the same time whet readers'
appetites for more) where it is most
needed- i.e., to a public probably
unreached, or at least unmoved, by
more serious and substantial books and
magazines.
Least tolerable to me of the present
trio is the second Trend entry, largely
devoted to fancy built -in home installations ( already ultra -familiar from
innumerable magazine articles, the
Greene -Radcliffe New High Fidelity
Handbook, etc.) which are just dandy
if one owns a penthouse apartment
and doesn't care what one's system
sounds like as long as it looks expensive. However, there are two chapters
here (on "Outdoor Speaker Systems"
and "Installing Extension Speakers")
which may be reasonably helpful to
some readers.
If you overlook the basic impossibility of ever reproducing first -rate
sound really cheaply, Hoefler's second
entry has many of the same solid
merits as his first, plus even greater
practical usefulness thanks to its special emphasis on making the most of
free broadcasts and low-cost disks, as
well as the sounder "bargains" in
equipment. And for the absolute beginner, one chapter in particular is
well worth the cost of the whole
book: that listing magazines, catalogues, brochures, etc., which are available, free, on request.
My ambivalent attitude towards
these booklets in general is further
complicated when my own friends
and colleagues are involved in them.
Again one mind delights in their
opportunity to speak to a mass
audience on our favorite subject; the
other ( subconsciously at least! ) is
Continued on page 13
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
BOOKSHELF
Continued from page zo
envious and meanly searches for slips,
But in
errors, and compromises
the Mayer & Conly* work my better
self was unusually gratified and my
worse decisively disappointed. The
approach is genuinely elementary; the
writing is not merely straightforward
but intelligent (and, even more exceptionally, not without a humorously
light touch) ; while commercial components are freely cited, they are
viewed reasonably critically, and in
any case are not allowed to distract
one's primary attention from the principles on which their functions are
based; and the "photograms" by Al
Squillace add a distinctive air to the
otherwise more conventional, if excellently chosen, illustrations.
Apart from a careless reference to
"loud and soft voltages" and, to me,
the very dubious recommendation that
the speaker is the last component to
be tackled in any system- improvement
program, I found little with which I
could disagree and much to admire
especially in the logical organization
of the materials and the way in which
the most naïve (yet most natural)
novice's questions are both shrewdly
anticipated and reasonably answered.
The section on changers vs. turntables&-arms is particularly good; that on
shopping tips and buying by mail I
would think extremely helpful for
beginners; the list of one hundred
recommended high -fidelity recordings
is chosen with a keen ear for musical
as well as sonal values; and the glossary of terms is unusual in its freedom
from ambiguities. In short, while most
of these booklets are well worth their
low cost if only for skimming- through
purposes, the Mayer & Conly Hi -Fi
honestly impresses me as a really
essential handbook for the beginner
--and for good measure one which
even the most experienced audiophile
can read, and recommend, with satisfaction.
....
-
*Mayer, I am informed, really wrote the book,
Conly serving as consultant and coach, so to speak.
GRACE NOTES
Fundamentals of Electroacoustics.
I
can't imagine why this first English
translation (by Ehrlich and Pordes)
of a German textbook by F. A. Fischer
(originally published in 195o) was
sent for review here. It's far too adContinued on next page
^-,,,.`,.w
°-
}
1\*1
The Best In Its Class
J
THE
NEW
!
FISHER_
Standard Amplifier
MODEL 20 -A
-
a low -cost unit of conthe amplifier you have asked for
quality. The new FISHER Standard Amplifier meets the
most exacting requirements in its field. As you would expect, traditional FISHER quality, handsome appearance, excellent workmanship
and advanced design are evident throughout this exceptional unit.
ERE iS
esspicuous
Incomparable Features of
THE FISHER
Model 20 -A
Power Output constant within 1 db at 15 watts from 15 to 30,000 cycles.
Less than 0.7/r distortion at 15 watts; less than 0.4% at 10 watts.
Intermodulation distortion less than 1.5% at 10 watts and less than .75%
Uniform response, ± 0.1 db from 20 to 20,000 cycles; within
at 5 watts.
Hum and noise better than 90 db below
1 db from 10 to 100,000 cycles.
Internal impedance is 1 ohm for 16 -ohm operation, giving a
full output!
damping factor of 16. This assures low distortion and superior transient
OUTPUT
12AX7, 2 -EL84, 1 -EZ80.
TUBE COMPLEMENT:
response.
SIZE: 41/4" x 13" x 63/4" high. WEIGHT: 13 lbs.
IMPEDANCES: 4, 8 and 16 ohms.
M
the
West
Higher
Price Slightly
1-
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WRIT
I
FISHER RADIO CORP.
uu n
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$59.50
TODAY FOR COMPLETE SPECIFICATIONS
21-25 44th
111111111111111111111111111111111111111IIIIIII
APRIL 1956
www.americanradiohistory.com
DRIVE
L. I. CITY 1,
N. Y.
IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII11111111111111 llIIII 1111111
BOOKSHELF
Continued from preceding page
Íí(i¡', ,;,,i
1Í:II,I,sIllllllli
I,'1ll,
vanced and mathematical in nature
for all but a possible tiny fraction of
"Bookshelf" readers to utilize, and it's
certainly nothing I am able to discuss,
let alone judge. All I can note is that
it seems accurately described by its
publishers as "written for those who
intend to engage in the solution of
electroacoustical problems in a thorough and exhaustive manner, and its
purpose is to present the necessary
fundamental theory in closed forms."
Further, I can only add that it is
handsomely printed in 198 pages, with
102 illustrations, 5 tables, innumerable
mathematical equations, and a two page
bibliography
( Interscience,
''
ll
i11;'11;1lIIlI,';;; Ilülllilii
I
llillliilll
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Iillll)l1l
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1;1+IIIlllii
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WITH EXCLUSIVE
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AN EXCEPTIONAL,
NEW THIRTY -WATT
AMPLIFIER
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PEAKS
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30 -Watt Amplifier
MODEL 80 -AZ
-
Our great new 30 -watt amplifier with
PowerScope, a Peak Power Indicator calibrated in watts to show
instantly the peak load on your speaker system. The new FISHER
80 -AZ Amplifier is the first with a positive indicator to prevent voice
coil damage. The Model 80 -AZ is magnificent in appearance and quality.
NOTHER FISHER FIRST
Incomparable Features of
-
THE
FISHER
Model 80 -AZ
less than 0.5% distortion at 30 watts; less than 0.05% at 10 watts.
High ou:put
Intermodulation distortion less than 0.5% at 25 watts and
Handles 60 -watt peaks.
0.2% at :0 watts.
Uniform response 10 to 50,000 cycles; within 0.1 db from
20 to 20,000 cycles.
Power output is constant within 1 db at 30 watts, from 15 to
Three
35,000 cycles.
Hum and noise level better than 96 db below full output!
separate feedback loops for lowest distortion and superior transient response.
Unique cathode feedback circuit for triode performance with the efficiency of
tetrodes.
Output transformer has interleaved windings and a grain -oriented steel
core. Three Controls: PowerScope, Z -Matie and Input Level. Handsome, brushed Tube Combrass control panel (with sufficient cable for built -in installations.)
plement: 1- 12ÁT7, 1- 12AU7A,
EL-37, 1- 5V4 -G, 1- PowerScope Indicator,
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2-
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II
IIIItII
IIIIIIItI JIIIIIIIIIIIIItIIIII IIIIIIII IIIIIIIIII IIIIIIII IIIIIIIItIIIIIIIII11IIIII
.
Libretto in Search of
a
Composer.
Another mystery, of very different
sort, is S. A. DeWitt's libretto for
a grand opera, François Villon, for
which the music is yet to be written
maybe. Just possibly there are a
few aspiring opera composers among
my readers, but again I abdicate
responsibility for pronouncing judgment on a form of literature about
which I can't pretend even in my
boldest dreams to having any authority. The best, or worst, I can say is
that this example seems to surpass
even the accepted norm in degree of
confusion, abundance of blood -andthunder, and freedom from any degree
of rationality ( Greenberg, boards,
$2.00).
-
Ballet Carnival. A fat, very -very
British, balletomane's "companion," in
which Margaret Crosland diligently
provides "everything you want to
know about the world of ballet." In
this case, "everything" includes photographs (4o pages); biographical
sketches of some 114 dancers (62
pages ) the "stories" of some 161
ballets ( 308 pages) a vocabulary of
ballet terms (5 pages) ; and an unannotated LP discography, listing British
order numbers only (21 pages) . The
relative space allotments provide a
significant index to the author's, and
presumably most of her readers', primary interests ( Arco, $4.75)
;
;
_
r.>U
Price Slightly Higher West of the Rockies
WRITE TODAY FOR COMPLETE SPECIFICATIONS
L. I. CITY
FISHER RADIO CORP., 21 -25 44th DRIVE
I
;r_-3" --'
I
r'3
)
1
.-.
N. Y
1
LII
)
LLl
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
4
www.americanradiohistory.com
AUTHORitatively Speaking
Richard
B. Gardner, whose Toscaninichronicle, "The Riverdale Project," begins
on page 53, has been pointed, in his life,
at three different careers. As a youth, he
studied the violin for twelve years, but
decided to remain an amateur. An attorney's son, he took a pre -law course at
Cornell, but then lost interest. Instead
of going to law school, he went to work
for a Boston radio station, and studied
electronics by night. He became something
of an expert in electrical transcription;
among the programs he long prepared for
the air was that of the Christian Science
Publications, which went out to nearly a
thousand stations. After World War II,
during which he prepared material for
short wave propagation, he went to work
in New York for NBC. A year later he
transferred to RCA as a recording engineer.
After the arrival of tape, his job became
more and more nearly that of an editor
choosing, cutting, and splicing tape- takes.
Probably he was the first man in the
industry to make a full -time job of this,
and he was the obvious man for RCA
Victor to assign to the task of organizing
the Toscanini treasury of tapes and transcriptions into salable record-content.
-
BOTTOM
J. M. Kucera, who establishes the Bard of
Avon's audiophilia on Page 57, is a San
Francisco record retailer whose avocation
is writing. He puts forth a local critical
pamphlet called Sound Ideas, and has contributed humorous items to The Saturday
Evening Post and Saturday Review. He
thinks Beethoven was the greatest man
who ever lived, and Shakespeare the second
greatest, and wishes the latter had lived
long enough to hear the former's music
on his hi -fi set.
-
James G. Deane, whose writings are familiar to Washington Evening Star readers
well as long -time HIGH FIDELITY
readers, hates only one thing more than
turntable rumble, and that is record surface -noise
meaning not the sometimes
inevitable gentle hiss, but pops, clicks and
bangs. And he does not think these latter
inevitable. He thinks they could be almost,
if not entirely, done away with by adequate factory inspection. Hence the crusade
he calls for on page 6o. It may irk some
record manufacturers, but it gave us a
vengeful satisfaction to print it.
as
-
There is no such person as Helmholtz A.
Watt, as anyone with an historico- scientific background (or a remembrance of Brave
New World) will at once realize. The
man behind the pseudonym is a very well
known audio expert with a sense of humor.
He alone, of all our contributors, remembered that this issue would appear April t.
PRECISION WORKMANSHIP
THROUGHOU
THE
FISHER
Harold Farberman, the Boston Symphony
Orchestra percussionist who speaks up for
his craft on page 58, studied music at the
Juilliard School and continues to do so
at the New England Conservatory. He
has played for the City Center Ballet
Opera, in New York, the Indian Court
Dancers, and José Limon. When he isn't
playing, or conducting percussion groups
in concert, he composes. Coming up soon
is a Farberman symphony for percussion
not
but
and
strings
commissioned
finished. He says it will be a fi- fancier's
delight.
VIEW WITH COVER REMOVED
ALL - TRANSISTOR
Preamplifier - Equalizer
to announce the new FISHER All -Transistor PreamplifierModel TR -I. This little giant is the result of four years of
research and development and represents one of the greatest achievements in
the long line of FISHER FIRSTS. We believe the TR -1 is the first all -transistor
product of any kind in the high fidelity field. Its development was no accident.
but rather the fruit of twenty years of leadership in audio technology. The
TR -I has NO hum. We repeat: ABSOLUTELY NO HUM. Second, it has
NO microphonism. Other unique features of the TR -I are listed below. The
initial demand for this revolutionary device may exceed the available supply.
To avoid disappointment, may we suggest that you place your order now.
ARE PROUD
Wh.Equalizer,
Outstanding Features of
THE FISHER
Model
TR -1
Battery
Can be used with any existing amplifier, audio control, or sound system.
powered. Power consumption only 0.033 watts. Battery will last as long as it would
Can be used as a phonograph or microphone preamplifier.
when lying idle on a shelf!
Built -in switch selects carUniform response, within 2 db, 20 to 20,000 cycles.
tridge impedance. Handles all popular magnetic cartridges including very low-level
Hum level: absolute zero!
type. Does not require transformer with the latter.
Noise level, 65 db below 10 my input for high impedance cartridges. Better than
Incorporates RIAA equalization,
60 db below 2 my for low impedance cartridges.
Three Controls:
Permits output leads up to 200 ft.
now standard on all records.
Power /Volume, Cartridge Impedance Selector, Phono- Microphone Selector Switch.
Uses three transistors. Printed wiring throughout. a Fully shielded chassis with
Attractive control designation plate. stzE: 2" by 4" by 412" deep.
bottom cover.
Price Only $24.95
HEUCUr: 12 ounces.
WRITE TODAY FOR COMPLETE SPECIFICATIONS
FISHER RADIO CORP.
II II fI
21-25 44th
DRIVE
L. I. CITY 1, N. Y.
1111111111111111 11111111111111111 11111111111111111111111111111? IIIIIIIII IIIIIIIIIIIIIIILLlltHhiil 1111
APRIL 1956
www.americanradiohistory.com
Department of Utter Confusion
"-
Breathtaking!
As readers know, one of the free services we offer to readers and advertisers
alike are the Product Information
EDWARD
TATNAL L
CANBY
T'H 1,
ITS HER
ejiade4 ejZiric&o r012640i
SERIES
80 -C
(([STARTLINGLY DIFFERENT," says Edward Tatnall Canby, Audio
Magazine. "Has everything, at a very reasonable price for
top -quality hi -fi equipment. The easiest to read and operate I've ever
seen. The specs on performance are breathtaking and the over -all
quality of its electrical operation is pretty closely comparable to that
of a professional broadcast console control board. This is the current
standard for really hi -fi operation of controls in the home. Hum,
distortion, et al are so low as to be inaudible and mostly unmeasurable in the lab. And all this, mind you, in the middle price range."
Chassis Only, $99.50
Mahogany or Blonde Cabinet,
Remarkable Features of
THE FISHER
$9.95
80 -C
Professional, lever-type equalization for all current recording characteristics.
Seven inputs, including two Phono, Mic and Tape.
Two cathode.
follower outputs.
Complete ,nixing and fading on two, three, four or five
channels.
Bass and Treble Tone Controls of the variable- crossover feed.
back type.
Accurately calibrated Loudness Balance Control.
Self- powered.
Magnetically shielded and potted transformer.
DC on all filaments;
achieves hum level that is inaudible under any conditions.
Inherent hum:
non -measurable. (On Phono, 72 db below output on 10 my input signal:
better than 85 db below 2v output on high -level channels.)
IM and
harmonic distortion: non -measurable.
Frequency response: uniform, 10 to
100,000 cycles.
Separate equalization and amplification directly from tape
playback head.
Four dual -purpose tubes, all shielded and shock- mounted.
Separate, high -gain microphone preamplifier.
Push -Button Channel Selectors with individual indicator lights and simultaneous AC On -Off
switching on two channels (for tuner, TV, etc.)
Master Volume Control
plus 5 independent Level Controls on float panel.
11 Controls plus 5
push -buttons.
Three auxiliary AC receptacles. size: Chassis, 123/4" x 73/4"
x 43/4" high. In cabinet, 13- 11/16" x 8" x 5t/4" high. Shipping weight, 10 pounds.
Prices Slightly Higher West of the Rockies
WRITE TODAY FOR COMPLETE SPECIFICATIONS
FISHER RADIO CORP.
21
-25 44th DRIVE
L. I. CITY 1, N. Y.
16
cards bound into every copy of this
magazine. All you have to do is fill
in the names
of the products about
which you want information and add
your name and address. Drop the card
in the mail, postage free, and we cut
it apart and forward the segments to
the advertisers you have listed. When
we started this service we thought it
would be a nice thing for everyone
involved, but we had no idea that it
would grow into a major operation.
We have to handle nowadays between
8,000 and io,000 of these little coupons every month!
This is a process all by itself
sorting and mailing
and, generally
speaking, everything runs smoothly
enough. But there are times when our
coupon -clipping department really
starts to froth at the mouth. For instance, what would you do with these?
Here is one of our good readers who
sent us an envelope with eight coupons inside. Unfortunately, he forgot
to put his address on the cards, but
we kept the envelope. The stamp is
from the British West Indies and here
is his return address as it appeared
on the back of the envelope:
-
-
1:61
4,Gce r 22
CG"7
//`/
c1
-
We've studied this for some time,
but simply aren't sure enough of
it to fill it in on the cards enclosed in
the envelope. So we have one reader
who is now going to be annoyed with
eight advertisers for not sending the
information requested
or at us for
not forwarding his cards to the advertisers. Maybe we'll be lucky and
the man who filled in those cards will
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
i+
-
recognize his own handwriting and tell
us who he is
in good old block
print.
If that works we might as well try another one. Whose handwriting is this?
PLEASE SEND INFORMATION ABOUT:
Adr:rll:uJlA gktOti.7.KARRa e1).... hp
babel CD AEA E.
TO:
...tvG'
i%a9R6fAIÚ.:.Iifi.PROÑ,.CO
.. off?.o...
s
...WG-sT.13144'
R
N:y
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
We received sixteen inquiries from
this reader but he got mixed up somehow and filled in the complete name
and address of the manufacturer, rather
than his own! All we know is that the
postmark says "New Hyde Park,
New York."
We're holding the coupons which
the above unidentified individuals sent
in and will whisk them off to the advertisers as soon as we get the needed
information.
Service
that's our motto!
-
New Tape
Afton Industries has announced the
availability of Afton Tapes which are
supplied on both Acetate and Mylar
bases in all standard thicknesses. For
more information, write them at 8300
Flex -O -Lite Drive, St. Louis 23, Mo.
Speaking of Tape
.
NEW! and only $9950
TH1,
FISHER
FM TUNER
. .
We see where Harmon Kardon, not
satisfied with providing facilities on
its preamplifier -control units for direct
connection to tape playback heads,
has gone a step further and now provides three positions of tape equalization to compensate for speeds of 15,
7.5 and 3.75 ips. This new feature appears on their Model C -3oo.
The Votes Are In, No.
2
In the November NWI we asked you to
vote for an AM, FM, or AM -FM tuner
kit, and once again, we were gratified at the number of readers who responded. The AM-FM combination kit
brought the largest vote and the price
preferred was somewhere in the $50$75 range, with a few willing to pay
$100. The second choice was for an
FM -only kit and, oddly enough, these
voters, for the most part, prefer one
in the $75 -$100 range, with a few
Continued on next page
MODEL FM -40
-
HERE
-
IT Is, a FISHER FM Tuner
with all that the name implies
for only $99.50. Through the years it has been our policy to bring
equipment of FISHER calibre within the reach of the widest possible
audience. Rarely has that objective been more spectacularly attained.
For the FM -40 represents one of our greatest values in almost two
decades. It is a superb combination of engineering excellence and
dazzling performance at moderate cost. Its specifications, conservatively
outlined below, are your best index to the quality of this instrument.
Important Features of
THE FISHER FM -40
Meter for micro -accurate, center -of- channel tuning.
Sensitivity: 3 microvolts for 20 db of quieting.
Uniform response, ± 1 db, 20 to 20,000 cycles.
Three -gang variable capacitor.
Three IF stages and a cascode RF stage.
Two outputs: Detector /Multiplex (on switch) plus cathode -follower-type
Main Audio, permitting leads up to 200 feet.
Two Controls: AC Power/
Volume, and Station Selector.
Chassis completely shielded and shock mounted; includes bottom plate.
8 tubes: 1- 6BQ7A, 1-6U8, 3-6BH6,
1-6AL5, 1- 12AU7A, 1 -6X4.
Folded dipole antenna supplied.
Heavy
flywheel tuning mechanism.
Beautiful brown-and -gold brushed - brass, front
control panel.
Highly legible, edge- lighted glass dial scale (accurately
calibrated slide -rule type) with logging scale.
Self- powered.
stzE: 12%"
SHIPPING wElcttr: 15 pounds.
wide, 4" high, 8%" deep, including knobs.
Professional FM Tuner
Only
$99.50
MAHOGANY OR BLONDE CABINET: $14.95
Priees Slightly higher West of the Rockies
WRITE TODAY FOR COMPLETE SPECIFICATIONS
FISHER RADIO CORP., 21 -25 44th DRIVE
L. I. CITY
1
N. Y.
I7
APRIL 1956
www.americanradiohistory.com
NOTED WITH INTEREST
Continued from preceding page
5S
FiflNER
T
jj
isii";
holding out for $50. For an AM -only
kit, the few who wanted it specified a
price of $50. Several voters specified
that the tuner wanted was one which
was designed with the "fringe areas"
in mind; others specified such things
as a tuning eye or meter, Armstrong
circuit; variable AFC; cathode follower output. Well, that should give
the kit manufacturers something to
work on.
..+...t
.ns1.,
s
009
00
140
11 120
1181
s
ta
Auto Tape Recorder
AM Quality Leader!
THE
FISHER
AM TUNER
MODEL AM -80
SHORTLY after the appearance of the ramous FISHER FM -80
Tuner, we received many requests for an AM counterpart of
the same blue- ribbon breed. The AM -80 was engineered in response
to those requests and we are proud of it
as its owners will be. In
-
areas beyond the service of FM stations, users of the AM -80 will
discover with delight that it has the pulling power of a professional
communications receiver, bringing enjoyable reception of ordinarily
elusive, distant stations. The AM -80 offers broad -tuning for high
fidelity AM reception, as well as medium and sharp tuning for
suppression of interference where it exists; and it is a perfect companion for the FM -80. The specifications below speak for themselves.
Outstanding Features of
THE FISHER
AM -80
Features a relative- sensitivity tuning meter for micro -accurate station selection Sensitivity: better than one microvolt! Three -gang variable condenser.
Three -position, adjustable hand- width.
One tuned RF and two IF stages.
dh at S Kc. Audio section:
Frequency response (broad position)
Dual
Built -in 10 Kc whistle filter.
uniform response, 20 to 20,000 cycles.
Three high -impedance inputs.
antenna inputs. Loop antenna supplied.
shielded
up
to
200
feet.
Completely
follower
permits
leads
Cathodeoutput
Flywheel tuning.
and shock -mounted construction, including bottom plate.
Beautiful, brushed -brass control
Slide -rule tuning dial with logging scale.
panel.
Four controls: Power; Sensitivity. Function. Tuning, Output Level
Tube Complement: Total of Eight. 3 (,B 15, 1 -6BEfi, 1 -6AL5,
Control.
2 -6C4,
-6X4. SriF: I ?t't' aide. 4" high, ti' deep. including knobs.
Cousino, who have already had experience manufacturing tape cartridges,
have announced a device to fit into
the dashboard of your car so that you
can play back pre-recorded tapes while
driving or make new recordings. They
suggest many serious uses for this device such as dictation, learning from
self- improvement tapes, recording a
vacation diary, entertaining children
on long trips, etc. And, if you're
disinclined to be serious -minded during your daily trek to the office or
from client to client, then you can
have some fun recording, say, a bevy
of screeching starlings flying at low
altitude, car -pool jokes which you can
never remember, that particular aria
which sounds so good in the car or
shower, or the cop bawling you out
for sloppy driving.
Write Cousino, Inc., 2325 Madison
Ave., Toledo 2, Ohio, for full information.
Finishing Kit
Yield House, N. Conway, N. H., has
announced the availability of a kit
which contains everything needed to
primer,
finish unfinished furniture:
sealer, stain, wax, sandpaper, and steel
wool pads (no brushes needed); and
offers a choice of seven colors from
honey -tone pine to mahogany. Cost:
-3
1
i
Price Only $139.50
Mahogany or Blonde Cabinet:
$14.95
/'rice Slightly higher West of the Roebies
WRITE TODAY FOR COMPLETE SPECIFICATIONS
FISHER RADIO CORP.
21-25 44th
DR:VE
1, I. CITY
1, N. Y.
1.65.
Pickup -Arm Handle
reader suggested in "Letters" last
year that someone devise a handle for
pickup arms. This idea was picked
up by a student of industrial design
who has devised such a handle and
would like to offer it to a manufacturer
A
Anyone interested
for production.
write Box PU, High Fidelity Magazine,
Great Barrington, Mass.
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
,
5
www.americanradiohistory.com
Tape Delay Mechanisms, cont'd
Back a few issues ago we mentioned a
tape device for use in conjunction with
public address systems in large auditoriums. By careful positioning of a
series of playback heads the arrival of
sound from the microphone at the extension speakers was delayed an appropriate amount. Thus was avoided
the "double talk" effect which is often associated with large PA systems.
Our NWI item brought an interesting letter from C. J. LeBel (Audio
Instrument Company) in which he described a similar device developed by
his company. Here is what he said:
"...
Our Model 301 Magnetic Tape
Time Delay System uses a tape loop
instead of a drum, but the net result is
the same. We built the prototype of
Model 301 for the United Nations,
and they have used it in the Plenary
(General Assembly) Hall for nearly
three years. The result is startlingly
effective
you can stand right under
the loudspeakers under the rear or side
balconies and not know that they are
operating. The sound seems to originate up front. This is achieved by using
the Fay -Hall (usually called Haas)
effect, which involves having the sound
leave the rear speakers slightly (up to
35 milliseconds) after the sound from
the front reaches the rear. According
to this effect, the first sound which
reaches the ear takes command of the
ear's directional apparatus, even if
weaker in intensity. On your next trip
to New York, if during a General Assembly meeting, stop in there and
listen
AMERICA'S
TOP
FM
TUNER
IN
SENSITIVITY,
APPEARANCE
WORKMANSHIP
AND
150,000 Witnesses
HAVE VERIFIED THE FM -80'S SUPERIORITY!
THE,
lETS H1L,R
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World's Best by LAB Standards
...."
who attended the Audio Fairs in New York, Chicago,
Los Angeles, Washington, Boston and Philadelphia found that
only Fisher Radio Corporation had set up a battery of regular production tuners so that you, the consumer, might operate them as you
saw fit, in an obviously radio -difficult location, and with only the
most elementary of antennas taped to the wall. More than 150,000
people made these tests, and were astonished to find FM stations
coming in perfectly from 'impossible' distances. This Missouri -show -me
style test has settled once and for all the question as to who makes
the best tuners in America. To those who did not attend the Audio
Fairs, we say: Try it before you buy it!
Chassis Only, $139.50
Mahogany or Blonde Cabinet, $1 4,95
THOSE
A Matter of Taste
Not long ago, in this column, we
re-
produced a drawing by an 8- year -old
of his house filled with music, and
commented at the time that one never
knows how high fidelity will affect a
child.
This month, with great pleasure, we
give you a poem written by i 31/2-yearold Barbara Friedberg, of Brooklyn,
obviously a daughter of hi -fi.
My Hi -Fi Dog
Playing on the pianoforte,
I hear my cocker spaniel snort.
He becomes so insolent,
When the music's dissonant.
"I beg your pardon,
This stuff is modern!"
Now I'll play a popular tune,
Maybe that'll make him swoon.
Continued on next page
APRIL 1956
Outstanding Features of
THE FISHER FM -80
TWO meters. One to indicate sensitivity, one to indicate center-of- channel
for micro -accurate tuning.
Armstrong system, with two IF stages, dual
limiters and a cascode RF stage.
Full limiting even on signals as weak
as one microvolt.
Dual antenna inputs: 72 ohms and 300 ohms balanced
(exclusive!)
Sensitivity: 1% microvolts for 20 db of quieting on 72 -ohm
input: 3 microvolts for 20 db of quieting on 300-ohm input.
Chassis
completely shielded and shock -mounted, including tuning condenser, to eliminate microphonics, and noise from otherwise accumulated dust.
Three
controls
Variable AFC /Line- Switch, Sensitivity, and Station Selector
PLUS an exclusive Output Level Control.
Two bridged outputs
low impedance, cathode -follower type, permitting' output leads up to 200 feet.
11 tubes.
Dipole antenna supplied. Beautiful, brushed -brass front panel.
's'EIGHT: 15 pounds. CHASSIS SIZE: 123/4" wide, 4" high,
Self- powered.
S'/s" deep including control knobs.
-
-
Price Slightly Higher West of the Rockies
WRITE TODAY FOR COMPLETE SPECIFICATIONS
FISHER RADIO CORP.
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HOW DIRECT-DRIVE SAVES YOU
TWICE THE COST OF THIS
iXORM MANUAL PLAYER
WITH PREASSEMBLED TONEARM
..
Shortwave Outlook
.
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IN YOUR SYSTEM!
I
Low resonance
aluminum construction
Tracking weight and cartridge
alignment adjustments
Convenient finger lift
EASIER
Knob for
3 -SPEED
"exact pitch"
adjustment
SELECTION
Adjustable base plate
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MORE CONVENIENCE
FEATURES
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condenser.
THOW
NEW HYDE PARK
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NEW YORK
'
Continued from preceding page
development of radio could be told
with postage stamps? No philatelists
we, we still get a kick out of following
the progress of electronics from the
first electrical generator right through
present -day electronics in the booklet
Radio Philatelia, by Herbert Rosen,
published by Audio- Master Corp., 17
E. 45th St., N. Y., N. Y. ($2.00). We
were especially intrigued by a Prague
postmark which depicts on one end
a conductor leading an orchestra and,
on the other side of the round city date mark, a man listening to his radio.
That was a commemorative postmark
issued in 1935.
It seems that all phases of telecommunications have been covered except the phonograph.
Maybe we
should start lobbying for that.
You'd have to spend at least twice as much for a turntable
comparable
in performance to the CB -33P Manual Player. Most quality
units are
complex in design
more costly to make. Just as efficient but far less
costly is the "near- perfection" performance of the DIRECT
-DRIVE
system in the CB -33P. A cast -iron frame encasing the Swiss -precision
motor and a mechanical filter act to reduce rumble. Power is
mitted through machined gears which drive the main shafttranswith
unwavering speed regularity. A flyball governor on this electronically
balanced shaft provides freedom from undesirable wow. In
test
after
test the CB -33P maintains a noise ratio of -48db below program level!
TONEARM PREASSEMBLEDIMMEDIATE INSTALLATION
NOTED WITH INTEREST
WRITE FOR
If you've been delaying buying a shortwave receiver because of poor reception, the time is about ripe for you to
take the plunge. In a release from the
U. S. Information Agency in Washington, we are informed that signal
strength in most areas is "good to excellent," improved over previous years
and standing to get better and better.
In fact, their studies indicate that shortwave transmissions in 1957 -8 will be
the best in years and may be the best
in history. This great improvement is
due to better conditions in the upper
atmosphere, which, in turn, are caused
by an increase in the number of sun
spots
craters caused by explosions
on the sun's surfaces
and their accompanying solar radiation. So, go
ahead and get that shortwave tuner;
those explosions might die down in
a few years.
Demitasse and Mozart
We were pleased as punch recently
when we learned what a New Yorker
planned to do with the eleven copies
of our January Mozart issue which
she ordered: she presented them as
favors to guests at a luncheon. (Incidentally, at this writing, there are
copies of that timeless issue still available.)
"HI -FI AND
YOUR
BUDGET."
22
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
The system shown -like every Altec
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in rigorous studio and theatrical use.
See your Altec Lansing dealer soon for
a demonstration of this or other complete Altec high fidelity systems ranging
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exceptional
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outstanding sensitivity
mahogany or
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powerful enough to drive any size speaker; comfinest record
prises a complete music system
Mareproducer -amplifier -preamplifier available
hogany or blond hardwood cabinet *. .. $237.00
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every Altec home music component you buy will meet or exceed its published
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Lansing component. In addition to quality performance Altec offers beautiful,
smartly designed cabinets that bear the Fine Hardwoods Association Seal.
When you check the specifications on Altec equipment, remember that these
are conservative figures that will be exceeded in actual performance.
...
ALTEC FIDELITY IS HIGHEST FIDELITY
furniture finish cabinets bear
the seal of the Fine Hardwoods Association
*.911 Altec
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9356 Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills, Calif.
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ALTEC
23
APRIL I95ú
www.americanradiohistory.com
SIR:
We read with
Webcor Imperial Diskchanger 1631 -21
The amazing new WEBCOR
MAGIC -N INDt" diskchanger
changes speeds automatically!
Here is the most sensational
new feature in record players
since Webcor first introduced
a low -priced automatic diskchanger.
The MAGIC MIND in the
new Webcor Diskchangers
automatically selects the
proper speed for each record
in an intermixed stack of 45
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records for hours ... without
raising a finger! (Plays 78
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The Imperial Plug -In Fonograt
Finest diskchanger! Plays all speeds, all
size records. Magic Mind Speed Selector.
Weighted turntable with rubber
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Free tracking tone arm. Adjustable
counter -balance for regulating
stylus pressure. GE magnetic car-
tridge with diamond, sapphire
stylii. Ebony and chrome or burgundy and beige finishes. Other
Webcor Diskchangers available with wide
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All music
sounds better on a
-
WEBCOR
Chicago 39, III.
a great deal of dismay
Mr. Burke's article "On Modifying
the Senescence and Mortality of
Disks" in the February issue of HIGH
FIDELITY Magazine. While we feel
that Mr. Burke is certainly entitled
to his own opinion on how records
should be cared for and what products
to use in their care, we think he was
unfair and uninformed in two specific
instances.
I. Mr. Burke says, "most of the
other protective inner envelopes are
nuisances," etc., and that a record
can be removed from a "diaphanous
chemise," referring obviously to a
polyethylene bag, with difficulty, and
that the bag itself "prefers to crumple
and tear rather than be slid back into
the outer jacket." Walco's round -bottomed polyethylene sleeves, which we
call Discovers, have been sold in
record stores for more than a year
now, and there are many millions in
use. We think anyone who has used
them will agree that the problems
Burke lists do not pertain to these
Discovers. They are easy to use, do
not tear, and provide an excellent
method of protecting delicate LP
record
surfaces.
Further,
their
rounded bottom permits easy insertion
into and removal from the outer record jackets.
2. Mr. Burke charges that a number
of liquids and emulsions designed to
neutralize static electricity do the job
but "clog pick -ups with sticky iotas of
their own substance, eventually restricting response." Then as if to
exempt two or three from this horrible category, he says "some fluids
which do not bedeck the stylus with
gum put a visible film upon the disk."
In some way this is supposed to signify dire results, but what exactly
does Mr. Burke imply when he makes
this statement? No doubt there have
been some chemical preparations marketed which would indeed leave a
residue on the records, and it is well
to point this out to future collectors.
Continued on page 27
24
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
LETTERS
CO NER
-Oftr. L:DUDSFECKER SYSTEM
Continued from page 24
However, we think it is extremely
unfair to lump all such preparations
in one category and with one sweeping generalization condemn them all.
Our own product, Stati- Clean, has
been on the market ever since the
inception of the LP record, and more
than a million users can attest to its
efficiency and its unique property of
NOT leaving any sticky or gummy
residues on the record.
As a matter of fact, the editors of
HIGH FIDELITY Magazine saw fit to
refute the same sort of statement that
Mr. Burke made relative to liquid
cleaners by publishing a "Department
of Fuller Explanation" editorial in the
TITH section on page II2 of the
February issue. The editors pointed
out that there is indeed a difference in
liquid cleaners for records and
referred readers to the TITH report
on Stati -Clean in the May 1954 issue,
part of which states: "
. during
this test, which was supposed to represent an accelerated trial of the
spray's long -term effects there seemed
to be no building up of residual deposits on the records
"
Herbert A. Bodkin
Sales Manager, Walco Products Inc.
East Orange, N. J.
.
ultimate in FIL)ELITY
+i music reproduction
ThE
.
....
We do not, of course, attempt to control our contributors' opinions, nor do
we censor them. As it happens, in this
case, Mr. Burke wrote his article last
summer, as part of a forthcoming book,
and it is possible that he never even
had seen a Walco Discover, since these
were not, at that time, commonly used
by record companies as protective inner
envelopes. The plastic inner sleeves that
were most commonly used behaved precisely as Mr. Burke said they did. For
the record, though, the undersigned
editor is a confirmed Discover-user.
Both Mr. Bodkin's un- sticky fluid and
Mr. Burke's anti- static alpha -ray gadget
strike him, however, as symptoms of
effeteness in our civilization. The way
to clean records, sirs, is with a damp
linen handkerchief. J.M.C.
.
Far low o- medium budget sound
systerns the S,ortho-n eomer horn
-with -C iDsch ortho 3 -way drñ.e a ,stern
approachES the KIIpsehorñ sysbenn in
perfor,ear-ce'tivailable ás shówn..iitL
ar wthoutctrJrers,.or 1-1 _udllity s-iool
cr unesse-nl_led kit form
SIR:
-
the feature "Big Band Jazz" had some
puzzling statements by John S. Wilson
concerning the music of Glen Gray
Continued on next page
tCNONTNONN
CORNER HORN
LOUDSPEAKER SYSTEM
-
As a charter subscriber I have enjoyed
your magazine very much since its inception
some articles more than
others, but, by- and-large, the most of
them. However, in your October issue,
K1.1PSCH
-
Both the ltlipsc-lo-n and _Shrthórn
systems are iaErir.-ted nder. personal
cf tre r designer. ='au1 W.
Ki psch. Wri:e fcr the tat.St,IJterafure an
pr ces on Klipsch ouds >ea-ker sys-errs.
K L
I
PS CI4 AND ASSOCIATES
HOPE, AR-CANSAS
www.americanradiohistory.com
TE iEPiaNES;
FRospec: 7-3395
PRospec -4538
FRospec -5575
LETTERS
Continued from preceding page
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PRODUCTS, Ltd.
23 Park Place, New York 7, N
Y
WO,th 4-8585
and Glenn Miller. He chose to exclude
their efforts from the list of Jazz of
Distinction, with two minor exceptions. Since Jazz has many, and varied,
definitions, this does not arouse objection until one sees the list of other
offerings such as Harry James's
"Sleepy Lagoon" and Tommy Dorsey's
"Embraceable You," to mention but a
couple; however, this is still in the
realm of opinion. But now, in the
December issue, when he reviews the
third Miller "big" album, he makes
some comments that just must be spotlighted as careless. For example, in the
second paragraph (where an obvious
typographical error exists: the word
"not" was omitted before "noted"*)
he bemoans the lack of solo artists in
Glenn's peacetime band, and points
out the luster of Mel Powell, Ray McKinley, and Peanuts Hucko in the service band. These men were good,
indeed, but has he forgotten that Ray
McKinley was in the civilian band, as
were some other not- to -be- laughed -at
instrument masters such as Bobby
Hackett, Billy May, Ernie Caceres, and
others' He then goes on to deride the
great civilian band as "afflicted" with
"one- dimensional" sound, and as
"stodgy" and "formula- bound." Frankly, one suspects that his yardstick of
great popular music is (apparently)
something heavy with improvisation,
and the superbly- rehearsed band of
194o probably irritated him by playing
a tune in the same fashion more than
once. Surely Jazz is one of America's
great forms of music (whatever its
proper definition may be! ) , but so was
Miller's civilian outfit great, and a
comparison between its recordings and
the military group's reveals a more important difference than "a greater jazz
feeling among the side -men"
namely, the professional polish of the glad raggers vs. the sloppy casualness of
the khaki-dads. Also, his comparison
of the Goodman standard "Mission to
Moscow" with the rough -cut Miller
wartime crew and its rendition is like
comparing a GMC diesel tractor with
a Cadillac Convertible
they are both
excellent in their respective fields. After all, how would the Goodman ver-
-
-
^`Amen
-
Ed.
Continued on page 3o
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
"BUILD-IT-YOURSELF" AND ENJOY
IN KIT FORM
iï
0
Heathkit FM TUNER KIT
Features brand new circuit and physical design. Matches
WA -P2 Preamplifier. Modern tube line -up provides better than 10 uv. sensitivity for 20 db of quieting. Built -in
power supply.
Incorporates automatic gain control -highly stabilized
oscillator -illuminated tuning dial -pre -aligned IF and
ratio transformers and front end tuning unit. Uses MODEL FM -3
Q
/l 50
6BQ7A Cascode RF stage, 6U8 oscillator- mixer, two
6CB6 IF amplifiers, 6ÁL5 ratio detector, 6C4 audio
Shpg. Wt. 7 Lbs.
'
amplifier, and 6X4 rectifier.
Heathkits
r
$2
©
Heathkit 25 -Watt HIGH FIDELITY
©
Heathkit HIGH FIDELITY PREAMPLIFIER KIT
AMPLIFIER KIT
Features a new - design Peerless output transformer and K'I'66 output tubes. Frequency
response within ±1 db from 5 cps to 160 Kc at 1 watt. Harmonic distortion only 1% at
25 watts, 20 -20,000 cps. IM distortion only 1% at 20 watts. 4, 8, or 16 ohms output.
Hum and noise, 99 db below rated output. Uses 2- 12AU7's, 2- KT66's and 5R4GY.
Attractive physical appearance harmonizes with WA -P2 Preamplifier. Kit combinations:
W -5 COMBINATION AMPLIFIER
W -5M AMPLIFIER KIT:
KIT: Consists of W -5M amConsists of main amplifier and
plifier kit plus Heathkit Model
power supply, all on one chas sis. Shpg. Wt. 31 Lbs. Express $5975
WA -P2 Preamplifier kit. Shpg. $7950
only.
wt. 38 Lbs. Express only.
Designed specifically for use with the Williamson Type Amplifiers, the WA -P2 features
5 separate switch -selected input channels, each with its own input control -full record
equalization with turnover and rolloff controls- separate bass and
treble tone controls -and many other desirable features. Frequency MODEL WA -P2
$ 9755
response is within ±1 db from 25 to 30,000 cps. Beautiful satin-gold
P
finish. Power requirements from the Heathkit Williamson Type
Shpg. Wt. 7 Lbs.
Amplifier.
Heathkit Williamson Type HIGH FIDELITY AMPLIFIER KIT
This amplifier employs the famous Acrosound TO -300 "Ultra Linear" output transformer, and has a frequency response within ±1 db from 6 cps to 150 Kc at 1 watt.
Harmonic distortion only 1%, at 21 watts. IM distortion at 20 watts only 1.3 %. Power
output 20 watts. 4. 8, or 16 ohms output. Hum and noise, 88 db below 20 watts. Uses
2- 6SN7's, 2- 5881's and 5V4G. Kit combinations:
W -3 COMBINATION AMPLIFIER
W -3M AMPLIFIER KIT: Consists of
main amplifier and power supKIT: Consists of W -3M amply for separate chassis conplifier kit plus Heathkit Model
struction. Shpg. Wt. 29 lbs. $
WA -P2 Preamplifier kit. Shpg.
$6950
4975
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Wt. 37 lbs. Express only.
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Heathkit Williamson Type HIGH FIDELITY AMPLIFIER KIT
This is the lowest price Williamson type amplifier ever offered in kit form, and yet it
retains all the usual Williamson features. Employs Chicago output transformer. Frequency response, within +1 db from 10 cps to 100 Kc at 1 watt. Harmonic distortion
only 1.5% at 20 watts. IM distortion at rated output 2.7 %. Power output 20 watts.
4, 8, or 16 ohms output. Hum and noise, 95 db below 20 watts, uses 2-6SN7's, 2- 5881's,
and 5V4G. An exceptional dollar value by any standard. Kit combinations:
W -4AM AMPLIFIER KIT: Consists of
W -4A COMBINATION AMPLIFIER
main amplifier and power supKIT: Consists of W -4AM amply for single chassis construeplifier kit plus Heathkit Model
WA -P2 Preamplifier kit. Shpg. $5950
non. Shpg. Wt. 28 lbs. Express $3975
only.
Wt. 35 lbs. Express only.
Heathkit 20 -Watt HIGH FIDELITY AMPLIFIER KIT
The World's
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This model represents the least expensive route to high fidelity performance. Frequency
response is ±1 db from 20- 20,000 cps. Features full 20 watt output using push -pull
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main amplifier on same chassis. Four switch -selected inputs, and MODEL A -9B
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Shpg. Wt. 23 Lbs.
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$355P
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HEATH COMPANY
Heathhit cónstruction manuals are full of big, clear pictorial diagrams that show the
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describes each phase of the construction very carefully, and supplies all the information
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high quality Heathkits and enjoy their wonderful performance.
A
Subsidiary of Daystrom Inc.
BENTON HARBOR 8,
MICHIGAN
29
APRIL 1956
www.americanradiohistory.com
LETTERS
Continued from page 28
sion of "Moonlight Serenade" compare
with Glenn's? I doubt if anyone will
ever top Miller here.
I hate to criticize anyone who can
turn out such a huge amount of verbiage and still find time to listen to the
records as he does (I would imagine
that if you paid him only ten -cents per
hour, that article must have cost ten
thousand dollars! ) , but too much of
that type of reviewing is enough to
jolt my great respect for HIGH FIDELITY, and believe me that December item
was more than just enough. Tell our
friend Mr. Wilson that he can placate
me completely just by telling me where
I can hear a band such as Miller's 194o
outfit today.
Elbert L. Griffin
Anaheim, Calif.
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with new General Electric Clip -In -Tip
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Clip -In -Tip is available on all new G -E
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See the new G -E Cartridges at your hi -fi
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Mr. Wilson replies:
I suspect that any differences there
may be between Mr. Griffin and me
stem from the fact that we are discussing two different things. I get
this clue from Mr. Griffin's reference to my "yardstick of great
popular music." If by "popular
music" he is referring to what is
frequently called "pop" music, as
distinct from jazz, then I agree with
most of what he says. Miller's was
certainly one of the most polished
of all "pop" bands. But it was not,
in my estimate, a jazz band
.
Miller's civilian band was essentially an ensemble and section band
which provided little opportunity
for soloists. The only consistently
featured soloist, as I recall, was Tex
Beneke, an extremely nice guy but
only a workaday saxophonist by
any standard. Bobby Hackett was
in the band, to be sure, but this excellent trumpet man spent almost all
his time buried in the rhythm section playing guitar. I think Mr.
Griffin is mistaken when he says
that Ray McKinley was in the band.
Maurice Purtill was the Miller
drummer from April 1939 until the
band broke up in 1942. At this
time McKinley and Will Bradley
had a band of their own.
It's Mr. Griffin's privilege, of
course, to prefer the "professional
polish" of Miller's civilian band to
the "sloppy casualness" of his Air
Force group. I found that the "professional polish" soon became
...
Continued on page 32
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
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Revolutionary Pot Structure embodying
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The first truly new speaker development
in the past twenty years.
To be released shortly.
The First Motional Feed -Back Tweeter with Amplifier
THE
Beta -iron*
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High Frequency Response passes 70,000 cycle square waves
A
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The original Stan White Electronic Crossover (24 db octave)
Amplifier Firsts
No Current Feed -Back
No Voltage Feed -Back
No Powrtron Feed -Back (sometimes called variable damping).
Now: Massless response due to motional feed -back only.
"So named because "Beta" is a feed -back factor and
"Beta" is an atomic particle which actuates this device.
99.50
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featuring
t
your exclusive Stan
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the above releases are so
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you'll be glad you waited!
See
M U L T I - F L A R E
O F
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curled into cabinets within 1°/0 of a special horn formula
Available in Blonde Korina, Walnut, Mahogany and Ebony Cabinets.
99.50
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The perfect speaker for small rooms and apartments.
M
h e
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Deluxe three way horn system of unusual quality.
The Millennium
The HiFi- 339.50
And Le Sabre -69.50
1000.00. Each one the outstanding speaker in its price class.
The Esquire.
-
...
...
INC.
A
D
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V
Dept.
H
I
S
I
O N
-4, 725
O
S.
F
EDDIE
BRACKEN
ENTERPRISES
LaSalle Street, Chicago
5,
Iltinis
APRIL 1956
3
www.americanradiohistory.com
1
LETTERS
JM ark
Continued from page 3o
bogged in formula, that the looser,
more relaxed (sloppily casual, if
Mr. G. insists) playing of the jazz injected Service band is more consistently interesting.
I don't know about that Mission
to Moscow comparison.
When
Miller undertakes to copy a Goodman original because he has a former Goodman pianist available, it
is more or less as though Mr.
Griffin were to order all the necessary parts for a GMC diesel tractor
and then try to put it together himself when a General Motors engineer happened to be visiting him.
John S. Wilson
of
Du.crimination.. .
SIR:
Capri
Amplifiers
Now, the world- renowned Bell Amplifiers ... in a choice
of models
are available in beautifully styled chassis covers.
This means that you can enjoy the unmatched performance of Bell
in combination with striking self- cabinetry that blends
perfectly with any decor. We urge you
to hear
and to see
the fine line of Bell
Capri amplifiers at your high fidelity dealer's salon.
Your comparison with other, far more costly
2122-CG
equipment is earnestly invited.
10 watt
.
...
...
---
-
The excellent article on Sir Thomas
Beecham [January 19561 brought to
mind the years I spent at school in
England during the Twenties. At that
time he was something of a controversial figure, what with his private life,
his temperament, and his musical initiative and activities.
His critics (and who can say the
English are devoid of a sense of humor)
referred to the London Philharmonic,
which Sir Thomas organized, as the
London Pillharmonic. There was also
a popular parody revived for his discomfiture, to wit:
Hark the herald angels sing,
Beecham's Pills are just the thing.
Peace on earth and mercy mild,
Two for man, and one for child.
Over the years, the criticism has
diminished to a mere trickle while
respect and praise has steadily increased almost to the point of reverence for this once so- called "musical
amateur." He is now one of the five
greatest conductors of our times; some
people even say that he is the greatest.
Albert Sadler
San Diego, Calif.
SIR:
2199 -BG
12 watt
should like to second the motion
(made in "Letters," December 1955 )
that HIGH FIDELITY include a section
regarding readers' requests concerning
Artists and Repertory. HIGH FIDELITY
readers would welcome such a section,
I
jSound'Systems, Inc.
X
/
I 555 -57 Marion Road, Columbus 7, Ohio /
A subsidiary of Thompson
Products, Inc.
believe.
If such a section is under consideration, permit me to suggest the following recordings: (1 ) a recording of AlI
2200 -CG
20 watt
Export Office: 401 Broadway, New York City 13
In Canada:
CharlesW. Pointon, Ltd.,
6
Atcina Ave., Toronto, 10, Ont.
Those who demand the finest in "living reproduction" always choose Bell
Continued on page 36
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
want
magnetic tape?
Extra strength?
High Fidelity?
New "Scotch" Brand High Output Magnetic Tape 120 guarantees greater dynamic range recordings ... with harmonic
distortion reduced to a minimum. 133%
more output permits brilliant sound reproduction. A must for hi fi fans. Also
available with Polyester backing at slight
extra cost.
New "Scotch" Brand Extra Play Magnetic Tape 150 is made to take even hardest wear thanks to its tough, durable
"Mylar"* plastic backing. In addition
to super- strength, new 150 Tape offers
50% more recording time on a standard size reel, and famous "Scotch" Brand
recording quality.
-
*
"Mylar" is a registered DuPont trademark.
35
APRIL X956
www.americanradiohistory.com
LETTERS
Continued from page 32
ceste, with Flagstad; (2) the 1942
performance of La Damnation de
Faust, with Novotna, Jagel, and Pinza;
(3) a complete opera with Flagstad
and Traubel; (4) an Emma Calvé disk.
(5) recordings of Lakmé, Fille du
Regiment, with Pons; (6) a new Fledermaus, with Novotna and Munsel;
(7) a recording of Contes d'Hoffman,
with Munsel and Novotna; and (8)
recordings of Gioconda, Forza del
Destino, Ernani, Tosca, Un Ballo in
Maschera, and Norma, with Milanov.
J. E. Spencer, Jr.
Clarksville, Tex.
marantz
Until such time as we're inundated
with requests, we shall try to print
Artist & Repertory suggestions in
this column, as space permits.
-ree,a/ia
-
Ed.
SIR:
I have a complete set [of HIGH FIDELI
TY] and could loan old issues to people
in the Berkeley area who are inter-
ested...
.
should like to make one suggestion: I have a turntable and find
that LP albums, arranged in "automatic sequence," require duplicate
handling; would it be possible for the
manufacturers to issue them in the
"manual" sequence again? I feel that
LP has made automatic changers obsolete for long pieces. How many of
us can take several hours of uninterrupted music, anyway? . . .
Robert Karplus
57 Overhill Rd
Orinda, Calif.
I
Pride of ownership comes to the possessor of
MARANTZ equipment. He wants ... and gets
... the finest results obtainable today. Careful engineering,- superb fabrication-individual testing
and adjustment -alI are obvious in the superior
performance of the MARANTZ Audio Consolette and the new MARANTZ Power Amplifier.
SIR:
marantz company
44 -15 Vernon Blvd., Long Island City, N.
Audio Consoleite with cabinet. $162
In West and Deep South $170.10
Y.
Power Amplifier. $189
In
West and Deep South $198.45
A few days ago I wrote to both Philip
Miller and George Marek, of RCA, trying to interest them in a lieder project
similar to the 5o Years of Great
Operatic Singing album. I am convinced that the only way reissued lieder
would even reach the break -even point
commercially is if it were done as a
plush package. And it is criminal that
none of Husch, Gerhardt, Ginster.
Janssen, and many others plus most of
the best of Schumann and Lehmann arcnot available (and RCA has deleted
its Lehmann and Schumann LPs to
boot). They have also deleted the
Continued on page 38
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
36
www.americanradiohistory.com
now everyone
can afford Ampex
STEREOPHONIC
Tape Phonograph
_
Cfgtialure
_JOL:7tl.1
AM
the new Ampex Time Pay Plan
7
... is good news for the music - loving family on a budget.
Now you can afford the best home music system. And there's
no need to wait no need to compromise on lesser quality
which may lead to a costly succession of unsatisfying sound
equipment. You can buy your Ampex today, get immediate
listening pleasure, and pay for it conveniently on the new
-
Ampex Time Pay Plan. It's
a simplified financing plan
with personalized terms designed to fit your budget. It can be
easily arranged in just a few minutes by any Ampex Dealer.
Whether you choose the exciting Ampex 612 Stereophonic
System or the 600 portable tape recorder and
620 Amplifier Speaker, you can be sure of this fact:
Ampex tape equipment is a lasting investment.
It's durable, trouble -free. clearly performs with the highest
professional quality. The recognized Ampex reputation
for quality maintains the market value of an Ampex with less
depreciation than any other sound equipment. Therefore
an Ampex is well worth financing and now it's easier than
ever an the new Ampex Time Pay Plan.
-
There's an Ampex dealer near you
PEX
CORPORATI ON
www.americanradiohistory.com
Dealers in principal cities (see your local
Telephone Directory under "Recording Equipment ").
Canadian distribution by Canadian General Electric Company
SIGNATURE OF PERFECTION IN SOUND
934 Charter Street, Redwood City, California
LETTERS
Continued from page 36
great Fischer -Dieskau LHMV -ío46..
Will be greatly appreciative if I can
enlist your readers' help in a worthy
.
cause.
Bob Tharalson
Billings, Mont.
SIR:
In your "Noted With Interest" column
in January you mentioned high -fidelity
systems that die out "exactly i1/2 hours
before you are about to begin a demonstration to a carefully selected group
of friends
" This comment recalls
an incident which occurred last year
while I was living in Tokyo.
The young and remarkably gifted
Swiss conductor, Nicklaus Aeschbacher, who was invited by the Japanese
to guest conduct and instruct the NHK
Symphony
Orchestra
( equivalent:
NBC) for six months ( extended to
one year) , was visiting me at my
home for the first of many pleasant
get -togethers. Mr. Aeschbacher has
never been to the United States and
had not heard hi-fi. I had, of course,
been praising it to the skies and was
eagerly anticipating the opportunity to
demonstrate hi -fi to someone like him
who understood music and could really
appreciate it.
During the afternoon prior to Mr.
Aeschbacher's arrival I received in the
mail a package from Fisher containing
the Z-matic attachment which I had
ordered to install in my earlier model
5o -watt Fisher amplifier. In a flash
of bad judgment I decided to hurriedly
install the Z -matic and make the set
"even better" for the maestro's visit.
Well, you can guess what happened.
The strings were "sandy," as Mr.
Aeschbacher put it ( in a graciously
tactful way ), and things were far
from what they should have been. All
my fault, mind you; I had grounded
the attachment in the wrong place,
shorting out the entire unit and leaving only the handicapped amplifier,
with several missing resistors, to reproduce the glorious sound I had predicted
which it didn't. The happy
ending to the story is that next day
the Z-matic was properly installed, I
issued another invitation to Mr.
Aeschbacher, which he accepted with
his lovely wife, Margaret, and we
...
hardly adequate to reproduce modern
High Fidelity records.
Now you can hear in your own home, the living
presence of the world's finest music faithfully
reproduced by a Gray High Fidelity Record Player.
See your local Gray Dealer for a most convincing
demonstration.
Descriptive literature on request.
GRAY
-
& DEVELOPMENT
CO., INC.
Manchester, Connecticut
Continued on page 42
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
yOuP
,6sf
,óuy
In this receiver system remote control is completely
electronic
there are no ratchet devices. An exclusive
Fleetwood feature you'll like is the definition control which
lets you vary the picture texture ... sharp and clear ... soft and
diffused ... or in- between
any way you prefer it. See your
dealer for a demonstration soon. Fleetwood builds quality
receivers that surpass any TV you've ever seen. The same
company supplies station monitors to the networks. The
Fleetwood you get for home use is engineered to the same
exacting standards as this professional equipment.
...
-
If you appreciate the difference,
you'll enjoy Fleetwood
EE
!
Manufactured by
Export Division: Frazar
&
is
Conrac, Inc., 1956
NEW YORK (continued)
NEW YORK
BUFFALO AUDIO CENTER
161 Genesee Street, Buffalo 3
Phone: MOhawk 1368
367 Mamaroneck Ave., White Plains
808 Mohican Street, Bethlehem
Phone: UNiversity 7 -3909
DANBY RADIO CORP.
19 So. 21st St., Philadelphia 3
Phone: Rlttenhouse 6 -5686
TEN CATE ASSOCIATES
6128 Morton St., Philadelphia
Phone: GErmantown 8 -5448
1.
AUDIO EXCHANGE, INC.
159 -19 Hillside Avenue,
Jamaica 32
Phone: OLympia 8 -0445
HOUSE OF HI -Fl
605 Plandome Rd., Manhasset, L. I.
Phone: MA 7 -1376
ARROW ELECTRONICS, INC.
65 Cortlandt Street, New York 7
Phone: Dlgby 9 -4714
ASCO SOUND CORPORATION
115 West 45th Street, (3rd Floor),
New York 36 Phone: Judson 24750
HARVEY RADIO CO., INC.
103 West 43rd Street
UTAH
AUDIO LABORATORIES, INC
Phone: SPencer 9 -6400
HOUSE OF HI FI
Main Street, Hempstead, L.
Phone: IVanhoe 1 -6890
PENNSYLVANIA
AUDIO EXCHANGE, INC.
WESTLAB ELECTRONICS
2475 Central Avenue, Yonkers
NEWMARK & LEWIS, INC.
43
N
the Canadian name for Fleetwood television
!C.
THE
I
Glendora, California
Hansen Ltd., 301 Clay Street, San Francisco 11, California, U.S.A.
Conrac
THE
TV
woo
cci
A C,
C.
CONR
Department A
Custom
Installed
OHIO
VIRGINIA
AUDIO CONSULTANTS, INC.
76 North Glebe Road, Arlington 3
44
Phone: JAckson 5 -3355
WASHINGTON
AUDIO CRAFT CO.
2915 Prospect Ave., Cleveland 15
Phone: CHerry 1 -5560
PIONEER ELECTRONIC SUPPLY CO.
2115 Prospect Ave., Cleveland 15
Phone: SUperior 1 -9410
RICHARD J. SAUER
SOUTH CAROLINA
HI -FI SOUND & RECORDS
621 -23
Phone:
Harden Street, Columbia
6 -3538
CUSTOM ELECTRONICS, INC.
OLYMPIC ENGINEERING CO.
2008 Westlake Avenue, Seattle
Phone: ELiot 4650
1
UNIVERSITY HI -FI SHOP
4111 University Way, Seattle
Phone: ME 6000
5
WISCONSIN
1000 South Main St., Dayton 9
Phone: ADams 3158
CUSTOM CLASSICS
13421 Euclid Ave., E. Cleveland
Phone: GLenville 1 -0256
DAYNES MUSIC CO.
15 East 1st So., Salt Lake City
Phone: ELgin 9 -7633
TENNESSEE
BLUFF CITY DISTRIBUTING CO.
12
234 East St., Memphis 2
Phone: BRoadway 6 -4501
THE AUDIO SHACK
1208 Milwaukee Ave., Janesville
Phone: PLeasant 4 -7657
THE HI -FI CENTER, INC.
2630 No. Downer Ave., Milwaukee 11
COUNTERPOINT
Phone: WOodruff 4 -3344
20971 Westgage (Westgate Shp. Ctr.)
LYRIC HIGH FIDELITY
TEXAS
Fairview Park 26
1081 Lexington Ave. (at 76 St.)
CANADA
MELODY SHOP
Phone: EDison 1 -6448
New York 21
Pine
466
Street,
Abilene
AVENUE RADIO & TELEVISION, INC.
Phone: LE 5 -5710 & 5711
R. S. T. LABS
Phone: 4 -4848
4114 St. Catherine St., W., Montreal
SUN RADIO & ELECTRONICS CO., INC. 14511 Granger Rd., Maple Heights
Phone: GLenview 4236
TOWN NORTH MUSIC CORP.
Phone:
MOntrose
2 -3213
650 Sixth Avenue, New York 11
5328 W. Lovers Lane at Inwood Rd., PAYETTE RADIO LIMITED
Phone: ORegon 5 -8600
Dallas 9
Phone: ELmhurst 6477 730 St. James Street, W., Montreal 3
SUTTON AUDIO SYSTEMS
Phone: UN 6 -6681
CLIFFORD HERRING SOUND EQUIP. CO
970 First Ave. at 53rd St., N. Y. 22 OKLAHOMA
West Lancaster at Burnet Streets
TOWER PRODUCTIONS LTD.
Phone: PL 3 -7224
Fort Worth 3
Phone: FO 4877 342 Gladstone Avenue, Ottawa 4
CUSTOM -CRAFT ELECTRONICS
TERMINAL RADIO CORP.
Phone: CEntral 6 -7219
TRUETT KIMZEY COMPANY
1314 S. Peoria, Tulsa
85 Cortlandt Street, New York 7
3515 West Vickery, Ft. Worth 7
Phone: LUther 5 -5148
ARACON RADIO CO., LTD.
ALPHA
Phone: WOrth 4 -3311
Phone: FAnnin 6145
29 Adelaide Street West, Toronto
JERRY FINK CO.
Phone: EM 6 -1591
GULF COAST ELECTRONICS
644 Clinton Ave. So., Rochester 20
1110 Winbern Street, Houston 4
Phone: Browning 3503
Phone: JUstin 1551
OREGON
HAWAII
W. G. BROWN SOUND EQUIP. CORP.
L. D. HEATER MUSIC CO.
WRYE CO., LTD,
TELCO LTD.
349 E. Onondaga St., Syracuse 2
1001 S.W. Morrison, Portland 5
2410 W. Alabama, Houston 6
605 -607 South Queen St., Honolulu
Phone: 2 -8979
Phone: CA 8 -8455
Phone: JA 3 -7874
Phone: 85991
1123 6th Avenue, New York 36
Phone: JUdson 2 -1500
1
your Fleetwood®dealer or write: Courue, Inc., Glendora, Cal.
www.americanradiohistory.com
LETTERS
Recommended by LECTRONICS
Continued from page 38
spent a thoroughly pleasant and interesting evening. The most impressive
recording we listened to (played
through twice) was the MercuryDorati Rite of Spring, which, incidentally, gets my vote as probably the
finest orchestra recording ever made.
As a result of this session, Mr.
Aeschbacher decided to include the
Stravinsky piece in his final concert in
Tokyo (February 1956).
Equipment used at that time included Fisher 5o -watt amplifier, Scott
I2 1 -A pre -amp., Fairchild 215 -A
cartridge, Garrard RC-90 ( eminently
satisfactory), and Altec 6o4 -C in folded exponential horn especially made
for it.
Mr. Aeschbacher returns to Europe
in a few weeks and I am sorry to report that he is not going there by
way of the United States. Before long
we will hear a lot of him. A tall,
handsome, unaffected, almost shy man,
Aeschbacher has remarkable musical
gifts and a sure, effective control over
his orchestras and vocalists. I urge
you to keep peeled and cocked (eye
and ear) for Nicklaus Aeschbacher
he' s worth it.
H. C. Coleman
New Haven, Conn.
-AVAILABLE TO YOU BY MAIL:
We are pleased with the number of music lovers throughout the
world who are doing their hi -fi shopping from our advertising
columns
on recommendation of I. M. Fried and the Lectronics
laboratories. Two more outstanding values are offered for your
consideration this month.
...
MARK II DYNAKIT
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The MARK II DYNAKIT -custom assembled and corn -
pletely tested by LECTRONICS laboratory, is delivered
to you with a six months' UNCONDITIONAL GUARANTEE, and will outperform any 50 or 60 watt unit
ONLY
except the incomparable "Custom
55 ".
$99.95
Specifications:
50 W. continuous, at 1% IM (most
measure .2 -.4 at this load). Frequency Response
:1db.-6c. to 60 KC. Full Power -20c. to 20 KC.
-
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.
.
.
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-
THE JANSZEN ELECTROSTATIC -
AR-1 SPEAKER SYSTEM
Since its introduction a
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system has created a sensation. In a limited
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COMPLETE SYSTEM
-
(Size 25" x 2114' x 12"
Units available separately
SIR:
- wt.
- Woofer ($132 -145);
$329.00
70 lbs.)
Tweeter ($161 -184). Details on
request.
Saadptetcag Cuazakteed .
LECTRONICS
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Continually Moving Ahead
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Gentlemen:
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69.75
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First, as a loyal reader of HIGH FIDELITY, I would like to congratulate you
for your fine series of illustrations entitled "Christmas Music -Making in
Pictures" (December 1955 ). It is not
only timely but informative as well.
Second, as a specialist in medieval
musical instruments, I would like to
comment on two of the illustrations.
The instrument in Raphael's "Coronation of the Virgin" is actually not a
medieval vielle, but a Renaissance Lyra
viol. Belonging to the family of "arm
viols," it has rear pegs, a drone string
attached to a lateral peg, edges of the
sides overhanging the ribs, and a
ridge, or purfling, along the top and
bottom all the way around. Raphael's
"Parnassus" in the Vatican depicts a
similar instrument. The musician angel from the Bamberg Cathedral is
blowing a specific type of horn, an
oliphant. As the name implies, it was
ordinarily fashioned out of an ivory
tusk.
Edmund A. Bowles
Summit, N. J.
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
The following are lists of records for trade:
if any records listed here interest you, write
directly to the person offering them and
give him your trade list. The records listed
below are stated to be in good condition;
however, we cannot be held responsible for
any records obtained through this column.
Lists submitted for publication in this
column must be limited to ten records for
trade and ten which are wanted. Composer,
title, performers, recording company, record
number and speed must be supplied by the
trader. Only 331/3 and 78 rpm records will
be listed.
ENGLAND
THE CENTER
SCIENTIFIC
OF
RESEARCH
A. R. Boileau, 1017 Isabella Ave., Coronado 18, Calif., wants to trade, in exchange
for a 12 -inch, classical LP:
Rachmaninoff: Sonata in G minor for
Cello and Piano, Op. 19. Schuster, Pen
-
nario. Capitol P 8248,
r2
-in.
*
*
Michael Foxman, 1463 Vyse Ave., Bronx,
N.Y., is seeking copies of "V" disks (78
rpm) recorded during World War II by
such artists as Tibbett, John Charles Thomas, Rosa Ponselle, etc.; also off -the -air recordings of above artists. Will exchange
interesting vocals on 78 rpm.
*
*
*
*
*
H. Hedley Smith, 137 Union St., Kingston,
Ont., Canada, offers the following LPs to
a fellow Canadian:
Bartók: Improvisations; Out of Doors
Suite. Hambro. Bartók BRS 9002.
Bach: Passacaglia in C minor; Pastorale
in F major. Walcha, organ. Decca DL
9560.
De Falla: Three Cornered Hat. Ansermet, Suisse Romande Orch. London LL
598.
Holst: The Planets. Boult, London Philh.
Westminster WL 5235.
Liszt: Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2; Massenet: Werther (excerpts). Wolff, Paris
Orchestra. London LD 9171, Io -in.
Percussion and Pedal, Vol. 3. Foort at
the Mosque. Cook 1052, so -in.
In exchange, Mr. Smith wants the follow-
Makers of the famous
ing:
Black
Box
Ravel: L'Enfant et les Sortileges. London
LL 1180.
Model HF25.
specification shows,
sound -eproduction.
This
wide-band amplifier, as its
represents an outstanding advance in
new
Specification: Amplifier-output 35W. undistorted, 50W.
peak; I.M. distortion 25W. 0.5 %, 35W. 0.72 %; response sub160,000 c.p.s.; infinite damping factor. Control
Unit -inputs for radio, tape, pick -up (with interchangeable
pick -up compensator plugs), microphone; feedback equalization
networks; bass, treble, filter and volume controls; front panel of
heavy burnished copper.
stantially flat
2-
Price: Amplifier $139.50
;
Control Unit $59.50.
DISTRIBUTED IN THE U.S.A. BY: BRITISH RADIO ELECTRONICS,
1833 JEFFERSON PLACE N.W.,
WASHINGTON 6, D.C.
46
Bach:
Concerti for Three and Four
Harpsichords. Vox PL 867o.
Tchaikovsky: Manfred Symphony. Angel
35167.
Rimsky -Korsakov: Scheherazade. London
LL 1162.
Any Audiophile records.
*
*
*
*
*
John Clark, 229 Hayward St., Yonkers 4,
N. Y., wants a recording of the Beecham
Eroica (Columbia ML 4698) and any
single 78s by Erna Berger. In exchange
he offers:
Beethoven: Symphony No. 3 (Eroica).
Continued on page 48
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
Inside
the
PRESTO
Pirouette
streamlined beauty on the outside, the
Pirouette is a miracle of precision design on
the inside. Embodies the exclusive "flick
shift" speed mechanism, with 3 idler wheels
mounted on a single movable plate. This simplified mechanism insures professional speed
accuracy, trouble -free performance, reduces
rumble and wow to negligible terms.
A
switch to a turntable ...YES!
.. but choose the best .. .
PRESTO PIROUETTE
u
T -18 -H TURNTABLE -The history -making T-18 turntable with hysteresis
motor
a triumph of PRESTO engineering achievement and a magnifi-
...
THE PRESr O
cent hi -fi instrument. $108.
'
-
<
PRESTO
ette
zO
T-18
improves record performance tremendously.
gives your hi -fi system the professional touch.
professionally built to last by world's largest manufacturer
of precision recording equipment.
styled by Bruce Kamp .:. leading industrial designer.
PIROUETTE
T -68 TURNTABLE -The 16"
PRESTO's flick -shift T
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took place. It will occasion no grief hereabouts if he didn't,
for although it is an honor to be consulted and /or cited
by Mr. Adams, the figure itself wasn't terribly impressive. Indeed, it seemed just a little puny for promulgation,
under the circumstances. It was (circa) $35,000,000.
Now this is no negligible sum, to be sure. It would
buy a bottle of beer for every American citizen old enough
to drink one. But it stands up very poorly against the
semi -astronomical figures that the query used to evoke
in days of yore
even from us.
This does not mean that the industry has slumped, for
it certainly has not. It simply reflects one of the pains
of growing up, which afflict industries as well as people.
This one springs from the transition from fantasy to fact.
Nowadays audio equipment companies carefully categorize their sales figures, and even report them, in some
cases, to an industry association. In the early, halcyon
days of high fidelity, no such data were available. When
an authority (like us) was asked the mystic figure, the
ensuing procedure went something like this. After choosing (shrewdly) several leading manufacturers in the field,
you asked their sales managers (I) to estimate what share
of the nationwide business they thought they handled,
and then (2) to extrapolate from that, and from what
they knew of their own sales- statistics, what the national
figure ought to be. The results were extremely plausible
and convincing, since from a half-dozen sales managers
you could get very nearly the same figure. The only trouble
with it was that it was wrong, and in no piddling way.
The average error (from my own investigative efforts)
ran somewhere in the neighborhood of moo per cent.
The only conclusion to be drawn is that sales managers,
unsuspectedly, are horribly overmodest about their own
prowess and achievements. Each always grossly under-
-
-
Pueey, as we are
tnat the reservoir of potential customers
was being used up at an uncomfortably rapid rate, and
this before they themselves (the suppliers) even had come
in sight of the legendary corner beyond which prosperity
lurks.
Under the circumstances, it is something of a relief to
realize that, in fact, the much bruited high fidelity "boom"
never really happened at all. There has been steady growth.
Sundry manufacturers and dealers now can afford Cadillacs. A couple even own airplanes. There are some social
circles or sets, in some cities, where nearly everyone one
meets mentions his music system. But the Great Surge
is yet to come, if it is to come at all.
We think it is to come, for various reasons. After
long depression, war, and turmoil, we are entering an age
of home ownership and of at -home recreation. You
know and I know what an entrancingly satisfactory part
of at -home recreation music can be, when it sounds forth
properly. But of the many, many millions of people now
concerned with fitting their homes for recreation, only a
few thousands are aware even that music can sound forth
properly in a living room.
This doesn't mean that many are not now listening to
something, though as audio it is something we wouldn't
like. The Metropolitan Opera broadcasts still command
an audience of millions
Tebaldi in AM network low -fi.
And there is one two -disk record album in which I have a
special interest that now has sold until one of every thousand Americans owns a copy. It is the Toscanini Beethoven
Ninth Symphony. Nobody buys that as background
"mood" music; it implies a serious intent to listen. Yet
I doubt that half the owners of the album also own sound
systems on which they really can hear it. And they ought
to. They deserve to.
What are we going to do about it?
J. M. C.
APRIL 1956
-
51
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SWAP -A- RECORD
Continued from page 46
Toscanini, NBC Sym. Victor LM 1042.
Franck: Symphony in D minor. Furtwangler. Vox PL 723o.
*
*
*
*
G. E. McGavran, Publisher, Daily Pacific
Builder, 465 loth St., San Francisco 3,
Cal., is seeking a copy of a 78 rpm record
or tape recording of the Abdication Speech
of King Edward VIII. In exchange he'll
purchase and send new records of the
trader's choice.
Walter J. Sandberg, 215 W. Main St.,
Whitehall, Mich., wants to trade the following records:
Beethoven: Symphony No. 3; Von Karajan, Philharmonic Orch. Angel 35000
12-in.
Haydn: Symphonies No. 88 and 93.
Scherchen, Vienna State Opera Orch.
Westminster 5178. 12 -in.
Beethoven: Overtures: Leonore r, 2, 3;
Fidelio. Scherchen, Vienna State Opera
Orch. Westminster 5 177. 12 -in.
Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 5. Music
Appreciation Record 59A. I2 -in., plus
ro -in. Analysis record.
Beethoven: Concerto No. 3.
Masterpiece Society MMS 25.
Musical
Io -in.
Beethoven: Symphony No. 7. MMS 33
I o -in.
Dvof'ák: Symphony No. 5. MMS 36.
I o -in.
Rachmaninoff:
They'll be calling this
"The Standard" in 1966
Thn f- 11111"ttn
Concerto No. 2. Ply-
mouth P 12 -12. I2 -in.
Schumann: Piano Concerto, in A minor.
Richet, orchestra. Remington 199 -65. I2in.
Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 23; Liszt:
Hungarian Fantasia. Kilenvi. P. Walter.
WALTER TOSCANINI
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
52
www.americanradiohistory.com
AT ABOUT 7:45 on Sunday evening, April 4, 1954, a
tired and confused little man stepped from the podium in Carnegie Hall and quickly sought the sanctuary of
his dressing room. There had been a feeling of something
impending during that concert; and shortly after the last
strains of music were swallowed up in applause, the world
was informed that Maestro Arturo Toscanini had retired.
He did not return to acknowledge the plaudits of a grateful
audience. He couldn't. It is not proper to pry into and
make public the intimate details of a man's suffering; it
may be proper to touch upon what can be delicately and
numb and bewildered. The evening had been a fiasco.
A few days later he again listened to Falstaff, this time
alone, and approved it. The gloom of retirement was
beginning to lift. In May he was in such good spirits
that the Artists and Repertoire Department was emboldened
to make a large request. Complete recordings of Verdi's
Aida and Ballo in Maschera under Toscanini's direction
were already on tape, but they were flawed with a few
vocal imperfections. The request was this: would Maestro
step out of retirement long enough to remake the portions that needed improvement while the orchestra and
soloists were still available? Toscanini agreed, and early
in June led two recording sessions in Carnegie Hall that
lasted more than three hours each. Everyone present was
agreed that the conductor had never seemed more robust,
more intensely concentrated, or more firmly in command
of the forces under his baton. But that really was the end.
Shortly thereafter he returned to Italy.
My next contact with Arturo Toscanini was in his home
in Milan three months after his retirement. RCA Victor
had long wanted to make available on disks his 1951 broadcast performance of the Verdi Requiem, and Maestro had
just as consistently refused to approve it. The Requiem
has always been an extremely important work to Maestro,
and it seems that throughout the years a perverse fate has
denied him the satisfaction of a perfect performance. Vocally, for soloists and chorus alike, it is very difficult.
Its dynamics are a nightmare to recording engineers, especially when one is working to the exacting standards
of Arturo Toscanini. The technical problems in the Requi-
intelligently surmised. Maestro could not return to the
stage of Carnegie Hall simply because he had arrived at
the exact moment every adult alive dreads -- the moment
when he must cease doing what he has always done. We
can only imagine the turmoil in Toscanini's mind at this
moment.
A few days after his last concert, I went up to his home
in suburban Riverdale with the tapes of Verdi's Falstaff
under my arm. RCA Victor wanted Maestro's approval
of this important work. Much effort and thought and
devotion had gone into its preparation, and at the appointed time Maestro was ready and willing to listen.
It was hoped that the playing of Falstaff, one of Maestro's
favorite operas, would lift him from the mood of black
despair into which he had fallen after the previous week
end and would help him to forget for a while the serious
illness of his daughter -in -law, Cia, Mrs. Walter Toscanini,
who had suffered a severe heart attack, also on the previous
week end. So that we would not disturb Mrs. Toscanini,
TOSCANINI IN RETIREMENT
by RICHARD
it was decided to hear the playback in the basement billiard
room instead of the large hall where we usually played
our tapes to Maestro.
We had hoped for great things that evening. Distin-
guished guests had been invited. Representatives of Victor's Artists and Repertoire Department were present. But
scarcely had the first fortissimo chord sounded than the
small, well -known, and eloquent signs of discontent began
to appear: slight gestures of the head, and (more significantly) none at all with the hands. We started again
after making changes designed to make the music more
palatable, explaining to Maestro that the acoustics of the
billiard room were not those of the large hall. At about
the same place in the music where we had stopped before,
Maestro hit the table with his fist and exclaimed, "This
is not my Falstaff
And he would hear no more. He
ascended the stairs, a torrent of Italian streaming over
his shoulder, and disappeared into his rooms, leaving us
...."
B.
GARDNER
em were always very much with us, beginning at the time
of its performance and extending to the time we worked
on it in earnest in Italy. RCA Victor wanted this work in
its catalogue so much that it was decided to gamble on
the great odds against its approval to the extent of sending me to Milan. Maestro was so advised, and he cabled
back that he would be happy to welcome me but that this
was not to be construed to mean a change of mind about
the Requiem itself. Accordingly, in July of 1954, I flew to
Italy carrying with me more than ninety pounds of tape
on which were recorded at least four different sound
versions of the broadcast in addition to all of the rehearsal
sessions. The next day I was met at the Rome airport by
Albert Pulley, Recording Administrator, and Richard
Mohr, Red Seal Artists and Repertoire Representative of
the New York Victor Studios, who were already in Italy
for other recording sessions. Together we traveled to Milan.
From the start the Milan episode was to be an up-
-
APRIL 1956
53
www.americanradiohistory.com
-
recorded from the NBC lines as it went on the air
Carnegie Hall exactly, and no tricks. Maestro slowly sank
back into his chair and listened, and he listened to the
end of the reel. He made no comments, but I knew that
his few signs of discontent had to do with the music and
not with the sound. When the first reel had been cornpleted, he observed that although the sound was not perfect, it was not bad. Would he listen to the rest of the
original version tomorrow? He would.
At this point, I must digress from chronology for a
moment and set down a point or two which have materially contributed to the education of this recording engineer, at least insofar as they pertain to facts peculiar to,
and learned from, Arturo Toscanini. I believe this important because my job is to produce sound on records
sound which the buyer of records will accept, and sound
which the artist will approve. In the case of Arturo Toscanini they are not always the same. One important
thing I have learned: while Maestro listens to playbacks
of his music, he is conducting from a podium, surrounded
by his musicians. In the performance, he blends and
balances and colors sound with the utmost care. Perhaps
he knows how this will sound in the fifth or fifteenth or
fiftieth row. I can't say for sure; but I now know that
he will never approve a musical selection unless and until
it sounds very much the way it sounded to him on the
podium. If a recording session has been held in empty
Carnegie Hall and there is a pleasant period of reverberation,
so much the better. If it is an older recording made in
Studio 8H, the sound will be dry, lacking in reverberation,
and clean. This also Maestro will accept, perhaps even
more than some overly enthusiastic high -fidelity listeners
who believe that any recorded sound is good only when it
has the echo of a cathedral. If you will, smear the original
sound with artificial reverberation,
in this quazi- Byzantine billiard room.
boost the highs, make the bass
but don't expect Maestro
boom
to approve this as his work. He
won't. He gives to every instrumentalist and vocalist before him
credit for knowing how to produce
the pure sound peculiar to his instrument; he demands it. Let no
recording engineer, albeit with the
best of intentions, interfere with
original purity in any way.
The above observations about
purity of sound were of great importance during our work on the
Requiem. Yes, we returned to Via
Durini the next day. The improvement in Maestro's appearance was
remarkable. He greeted us warmly,
and we proceeded almost immediately to play the remaining tapes.
He listened intently throughout,
indicating nothing until we had
finished, when he remarked sadly
that he did not see how he could
give an approval. There was too
hill struggle. When we knocked on the door of Via
Durini zo, we were warmly and graciously welcomed by
Maestro's daughter, the Contessa Wally Castelbarco, but
we were immediately advised that my trip to Milan was for
naught. Maestro was ill and had been attended by his
doctor twice the day before. I did not exactly understand
the nature of his illness, nor do I know to this day what
it was. The flood of discouragement that swept over me
those first few moments was alleviated somewhat when the
Contessa assured us that her father wanted to greet us
and that we were invited to dinner that evening. We were
made comfortable in the study, and in a few moments
Maestro entered. I almost wept when I saw him. His face
was ashen, not the almost childlike pink complexion known
so well and admired so much by his friends. He walked
slowly and with much effort, barely lifting his feet from the
floor. He shook hands with each of us and, in a very
tired voice, welcomed us. Here, indeed, was a sick man.
Our conversation concerned nothing of importance until
the Requiem was mentioned. He then showed a bit more
interest. When asked if he would care to hear our latest
"improved" version he agreed, but there was implied in
his manner that it should last only to the extent of his
patience with the music and his physical capacity to listen.
The music began, and there ensued almost immediately
the familiar gestures of discontent. The sound was not
good. It was not clear. Perhaps there was too much
artificial reverberation, I suggested. The expression on his
face was eloquent indication that he did not understand
such things. We tried another version. This was not
satisfactory either. Maestro was a bit excited and more
than a bit disgusted. Fortunately, at times of desperation
there sometimes occurs a moment of inspiration. I pulled
out the original tape of the broadcast, just as it had been
The elaborate control center of the Project
FRED J. SASS
is
-
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
54
www.americanradiohistory.com
happened.
He wanted to know how sound could be
much wrong with it, musically speaking. I told him that
changed, particularly in a reverberation chamber. He
I had with me complete rehearsal tapes and that perhaps a
listened intently as the operation of this device was exsubstitution here and there might save the recording as a
Maestro then repeated in his own
plained to him.
whole. This seemed to interest him somewhat. But he
words and in his own way what he had just learned.
really wanted to go to work only after I had played for
Describing with long sweeping sinewave -like gestures of
him parts of recordings of the Requiem by other artists.
his hand, starting at his mouth and extending off into
I felt that the expressions of amazement, anger, and conspace, he explained how pure sound is propagated. If
tempt which swept over his face while he listened to the
this sound originates in a large auditorium, it will flow
other recordings were indications of a dawning realization
forth and eventually return to the microphone from whatthat he had an obligation to discharge to his old friend
ever reflecting surfaces there are. This is natural reverberaand idol, Verdi. Tomorrow, he promised, we would go
tion as determined by the characteristics of the hall. In
to work. We then relaxed with cocktails and conversation.
a reverberation chamber, which at best is a small room
The number of people in Maestro's study the next
or labyrinth, this cannot happen. Sound emanating from
afternoon had been reduced. There were just three of us:
the speaker in such an enclosure impinges immediately
Maestro; Sandro Cicogna, a young and brilliant electrical
upon the microphone, thereby altering the original sound
engineer, whose help was of inestimable value; and I.
as it is being produced. It does not matter that the reverberaThis was to be the working team. Sandro, for whom
tion chamber may be designed to retain sound within
Maestro had the greatest affection resulting from several
its walls for the same period of time as a large hall; the
years of close friendship, spoke impeccable English. There
original sound has been interfered with at its source.
is no doubt that my objective would have been much
Maestro's arm motions became jerking and irregular as
more difficult to achieve had it not been for his ability to
he described sound so treated. I was convinced that
translate into Italian for Maestro's benefit certain informanever again would I attempt to "improve" the sound of
tion, especially that of a technical nature. Quite frequently
Maestro's music by such means. If the sound origin is
during the days to come we had the pleasure of the presCarnegie Hall, it will sound like Carnegie Hall. If it is
ence of Signorina Anita Colombo, friend and business
the short, dry, clean sound of 8H, that is the way it will
associate of Arturo Toscanini for more than forty years.
be on the record. It will be the way Arturo Toscanini
Her knowledge of Maestro and the music in question,
heard it when he conducted.
together with her natural enthusiasm, was certainly welcome
Maestro at last expressed a reluctant satisfaction with
during the inspiring, but sometimes trying, days to come.
the Requiem. It seemed at the very moment when we
We went to work in earnest. There was not a note
realized there was no more work to be done that the walls
nor a phrase of the broadcast or any of the rehearsals that
fell away from Maestro's study. Rejoicing people flowed
was not scrutinized many, many times. We weighed and
in, people I had never seen before. In the next room,
balanced; we compared and discussed; we argued the
the large white and gold salon, the popping of champagne
relative merits of mechanical versus musical excellence of
each portion of the Requiem. Our
Villa Pauline, west front. Maestro's studio lies behind the bay windows at the right.
work was concentrated, conseFRED
J.
SASS
crated, and often lasted far into the
night. When a score would hurtle
across the room, missing a priceless old Italian painting by inches,
a cold, black fear would well up
inside me. My only defense for
being there at all under the circumstances was the existence of other
recordings of the Requiem by
other artists. Maestro never refused to listen to the other recordings. Perhaps he was seeking
relief too. But after having listened, he was always ready to go
back to work on his own. Progress was slow. We went through
the Requiem phrase by phrase.
And then we did it again. And
again. Rehearsals and broadcast.
Again.
During these many days, Maestro became interested in things
electronic. In all of my previous
dealings with him, this had never
APRIL
i956
55
www.americanradiohistory.com
bottles could be heard. We drank to the completion of
the Requiem, and Maestro insisted on touching the glass
of each of his guests. It almost seemed that he would
dance if given the opportunity. He was well again, and he
was happy. I knew that work was as much Maestro's
life as was his music.
I shall never forget the wonderful days on Via Durini.
Our days were spent in hard and often discouraging work.
But the dinners late in the evening were something else.
Maestro presided at the head of his table as course after
course came and went with impeccable service, all made
completely charming by stimulating and interesting conversation. I was invited to spend a week with the family
at Isolino, their summer island home in Lake Maggiore,
but records had to be pressed, and I returned to New York.
Maestro spent the rest of the summer of 1954 at Isolino,
resting and enjoying the rural life of his beloved Italian
countryside. Upon his return to Milan in the fall, he attended an occasional concert and opera, and his drawing
room became the center of Milan's musical life. His
daughter, the Contessa Castelbarco, and his beautiful and
charming granddaughter, Emanuela, were perfect hostesses.
Solicitous for Maestro's happiness, they strove to provide
in the persons of their guests at Via Durini the stimulation
and interest necessary for the man Arturo Toscanini, who
looked upon himself as one retired.
I cannot speak with authority upon the reasons that
impelled Maestro to return to New York. I can only
surmise, along the lines that, delightful as his life in Milan
might be, he was not doing there anything creative. It
is impossible that Toscanini, who for so many years has
been recognized as the greatest musician on earth, could
sink into a state of lethargy and .allow time to flow past
and beyond him. There are too many contradictions.
Toscanini has lived long enough (when you read this he
will be eighty -nine) to prove that his origin lies in sturdy
stock, and his entire life has been one of artistic creativeness and an almost fanatical drive in the service of music.
So, in the fullness of time, on Monday, the last day of
February 1955, Arturo Toscanini came back to Riverdale,
New York City
".
to work on his recordings," as
the press reported. And this was true. At this particular
moment in his life, the only links which connected him
-
.
.
On the terrace, left to right: the author; Miss Lillian
Moore, a visitor; Miss Eugenia Cale, Walter Toscanini's
secretary; Signorina Anita Colombo, and smiling Maestro.
W.1LTFR TOSCANINI
creatively to his illustrous past were the little magnetized
particles of iron oxide on tape and the microscopic wiggles
on lacquer disks. They were all in New York, and so now
was Toscanini.
Within one week after his return to New York, I was
summoned to Riverdale. Production pressings of the
Verdi Requiem had revealed further flaws, although slavish
attention had been expended upon the execution of
Maestro's exact wishes as determined in Milan. I should
like to express one further opinion about the Requiem
and then not mention it again. I doubt very much that
any number of changes will ever produce a Requiem completely satisfactory to Maestro. Human device will never
render it as Verdi envisioned it and as Arturo Toscanini,
Verdi's friend and greatest interpreter, knows it should be.
As long as Maestro lives, he will wish it could be better.
Over the years there have been many memorable and
historic radio performances by Toscanini and the NBC
Symphony for which there has always been great public
demand. Now that there was no longer the pressing
necessity to keep a tremendous orchestra busy, Maestro
could utilize his newly found free time to review his past
efforts. Accordingly there was begun a close scrutiny of all
his past performances which had not been released to the
public on disks. As we delved deeper into this great mass
of material, we were able to see how much more extensive it was than originally estimated. It soon became
apparent that a more efficient modus operandi was necessary.
In July 1955 there came into being a plan known affectionately by those concerned with it as "The Riverdale
Project." By arrangement between the Toscanini family
and RCA Victor, I was assigned to work in Riverdale on a
full -time basis. This would bring me into frequent contact with Maestro and would save much time in the making of master tapes. On- the-spot decisions could be obtained, thereby saving hours or even days in obtaining required approvals. The entire operation, from a first listening session with Maestro to the actual production of final
tape, was to be done on the premises. The billiard room
of Villa Pauline, Maestro's beautiful Riverdale home, had
long before been converted into an efficient and completely
professional recording and transfer studio. Walter Toscanini, Maestro's son and manager, has spared neither
expense nor effort in the single purpose of preserving every
note of music ever conducted by his father where such
source material can be found. He has availed himself
of the full -time services of a young and conscientious
recording engineer, John Corbett, whose work is well
known in New York recording circles. All rehearsals,
broadcasts, and concert performances are being systematically submitted to tape; the historical value of this library
is evident. Walter Toscanini is diligent in his search for
better and better source material. His search has extended
to wherever such might be found, and I am sure this
work will continue until he is certain that there is not
anywhere better material than that which he has.
Walter Toscanini's program of preserving all of Maestro's
works and the newer RCA "Riverdale Project" coexist
beautifully and are progressing smoothly. Co- operation
has been complete by all in a
Continued on page 119
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
NOW, LOOKING BACK OVER my extensive reading, I can only say how astonished I am to be the
first student of Shakespeare's world to make the discovery
that the Bard of Avon was a hi -fi addict. In fact, I haven't
been quite so surprised by anything since the time an
earlier research project led me to the knowledge that Ludwig van Beethoven means Louis -from -the -Beetpatch.
It all began when I stumbled across this line:
Portia: Let music sound while he doth make his
choice;
-Merchant of Venice, III, ii, 43.
Who in the world would have imagined Elizabethan hi -fi
shops so adequately stocked as to permit the browsing
audiophile a decent choice of custom components so many
centuries ago? Please note my use of the word "shops."
At first I thought myself wrong in supposing that London Town boasted more than one hi -fi emporium in those
days, but my discovery of the following lines soon justified the assumption:
Guiderius: The music is round about us.
Belarius: Let us from it.
-
Cymbeline, IV, iv,
1
-2.
You'll agree with me that no finer description of an audio
fair exists in all the realm of letters. Not even the genius
of Shakespeare could have brought off such an apt turn
of phrase in only ten words without actual experience
astounded to learn that three- quarter -inch
plywood has been around for so long!
As a social amenity, high fidelity was as effective an
icebreaker in Shakespeare's day as it is in ours; and we
can feel certain that the Bard experienced as much frustration as we do over certain audiophilic encounters. Attend
this exchange of words between two early -day audiophiles:
I at least am
Belarius: My ingenious instrument!
Hark, Polydore, it sounds!
-Cymbeline, IV, ii, 187 -188
Bianca: Let's hear. O fie! the treble jars.
-Taming of the
Shrew, III, i, 39.
From the foregoing conversation we can infer alternative
facts. Either Belarius' tweeter was out of balance, or else
Bianca suffered from the same malady ascribed to today's
namely, aural
woman by certain writers in hi -fi journals
hypersensitivity to high
frequencies. I for one
tend towards the latter
-
hypothesis; if you'll recall, Belarius was the
character
hypercritical
whose suggestion it was
to quit the audio show,
so it's hardly likely that
he'd put up with strident
highs in his rig at home.
ounb, 5an5 (Crack or j.ftatu.,,"
by J. M. Kucera
of such a function. Thus there were audio shows in Shakespeare's time, and therefore a concomitant legion of components manufacturers. It follows, then, that there were
also partisan adherents to specific brands of components,
and necessarily a multitude of hi -fi dealers to rent those
rooms in whatever London hotel housed the audio fair
from which Belarius wished to escape.
Choosing the right components out of all the various
brands on the market can have been no easier for Shakespeare than we find it today. Just when the seemingly
endless search for the perfect loudspeaker enclosure began,
no man can say, but thanks to Shakespeare I've been able
to date the quest back at least 355 years. Note the lines:
Touchstone:
... Courage!
As horns are odious,
many a man
they are necessary
has good horns, and knows no end
of them.
-As You Like it, III, iii, 51 -54.
....
By now some of my readers are doubtless complaining
that Belarius was actually speaking to someone named
Polydore rather than to a woman named Bianca. To this
objection I simply call attention to the inconsistency of
Shakespeare's spelling throughout his plays. In truth,
Belarius was actually speaking about, not to, Polydore;
and for my part I feel that this is an allusion to Shakespeare's particular choice of LP records. It also establishes in my mind the fact that England began importing
disks from Germany as early as 161o.
Pursuing the subject of recordings, and again following the chronology of the Bard's plays, we can say today
with a measure of certainty that Shakespeare damaged his
first LP sometime before 1596, at which time he had this
to say about the badly -worn needle which caused the ruin:
Salarino:
APRIL 1956
... a very dangerous flat and fatal
.
.
.
Merchant of Venice, III,
i, 4.
Continued on page 128
57
www.americanradiohistory.com
Equal Rights for the Percussionist
by HAROLD FARBERMAN
The author is Boston Symphony Orchestra percussionist. He also has led
percussion groups in concert, sometimes in his own music, for he is a
composer, too. Currently he is at work on the Farberman First Symphony.
THE PERCUSSION SECTION in the contemporary
symphony orchestra is almost terra incognita for anyone
except
if I may use the expression
the natives.
It is saddening enough that most members of an average concert audience do not even know the names of
most of the instruments in the so- called "noisy corner"
of the orchestra.* But it is not, perhaps, surprising. Some
of the instruments are new, and many never make an
appearance in music of the classical period. What is less
understandable and more frustrating to percussionists is
that many modern composers and conductors seem almost as ill- versed as their audiences in the language of
percussion. The orchestra has grown hugely in size and
complexity since the days of Mozart and Beethoven, and
it is perhaps in this section, the percussion, that the greatest
elaboration has taken place, and the orchestra's tonal potential has been most widely expanded. Yet there seems
to be small disposition, among the men who write our
music, to use this new potential. I am being quite serious
when I say I suspect that many do not even know it is
there.
For evidence, look to the books. Leaf through one or
two authoritative volumes on orchestral instrumentation.
Unless your choices have been lucky ones, you will find
that, although they discuss in great detail the instruments
and organization of the string, brass, and wood wind
sections, they dismiss the percussion in a few rear pages,
leaving the distinct impression that percussion is a very
*Boston Symphony Orchestra's percussion section ordinarily includes tympani,
bass drum, cymbals, snare drum, tenor drum, Conga drum, timbals, xylophone,
tam -tam, tambourine, glockenspiel, gong, claves, gourd, triangle and chimes.
Charles Munch brought the author down front for the Bolero.
58
sorry stepchild in the family of the orchestra. It would
seem almost as if there were something faintly disgraceful, or at least undignified, about playing an instrument
by striking it rather than by stroking it or blowing it.
Some percussionists themselves appear to have yielded to
this feeling, that serious music making should be left
to the strings, brass, and wood winds, that their own
province is that of mere noise.
That word noise, and the attitude it engenders, is at
the core of our grievance. Through the last hundred
years of Western music, composers have stuck steadfastly
to one prime formula for the use of percussion. When
noise has been needed, the men with the war clubs at
the back of the stage have been called on to attack. What
makes this even more humiliating to the percussionist is
that, on top of being called on to make noise, not music,
he finds that his parts are incorrectly notated. Indeed,
he often finds them scored for instruments that are obviously not the ones the composer actually had in mind. In other
words, the composer didn't even know the names of the
instruments for which he was writing. This kind of thing
can become traumatic.
I do not wish to give the impression that no composer
ever has written knowingly for percussion. There have
been some (Bartok is a notable example) and there are
some now, who can and do. But in the main composers
still use percussion only as seasoning, rather than as a
major taste -ingredient in the main course, so to speak.
And it does not seem to me that they can do otherwise,
so long as they remain so flagrantly ignorant of percussion
scoring. It is not pardonable. There has been much study,
since the time of Berlioz and Mendelssohn, of proper
and exact notation for strings, brasses, and wood winds.
Technically, the percussion has at least kept pace with
these sections in its technical advancement. Musically, so
far as concerns composers and interpreters, it has hardly
been allowed to advance beyond the stage it had attained
in pre- history, when drums were the main sonic stimulant
to social intercourse (in dances and so forth) and the
leading means of cross -country communication. For some
reason
scientists seem unclear as to what it was percussion dropped out of Western social music during
the Dark Ages, or earlier. It has not, obviously, re- established itself yet. The Asians and Africans have far outpaced us in its use.
Let me cite a few egregious examples of what the percussion player must put up with in his weekly orchestral
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round (and the equivalent would send violin sections out
on strike without a second thought). Anyone who ever
has played in a high school band, or a Boy Scout fife -anddrum corps, will understand what I mean when I say that
the average symphonic composer today does not know
how to score such rudimentary essentials as drags, flams,
four -stroke ruffs, or 5- 6- 7- 8- 9- Io -II- stroke rolls. Indeed,
there seems to be, among serious composers, no commonly accepted system at all of scoring for percussion.
Different composers use different notations for what (they
hope) will be the same result. And rarely does any of them
insert a phrase mark. Why? Who knows? The information
is available, in such works as Morris Goldenberg's Per cussion Book and Saul Goodman's Tympani Method.
Further, as I have indicated, a composer will, all too
frequently, when writing for percussion, score for instruments for which he doesn't really mean to write. He will
confuse, for instance, the military with the tenor drum,
or the snare drum with the piccolo drum. On occasion,
the composer may simply write "drum." Which of fifteen
or sixteen drums does he mean? A French composer, for
another example, will specify a "caisse claire" when he
wants a snare drum, but if a percussionist were to walk
into an American rehearsal with a military drum instead,
most conductors wouldn't know the difference.
Most conductors, unfortunately, seem as ignorant as
most composers concerning correct percussion usage.
Significant exceptions are Charles Munch and Pierre Mon teux. Munch's handling of the percussion section in
Debussy's Iberia shows a sensitivity for percussion sound
that is always personally gratifying. I remember that for a
performance once of Debussy's Jeux, Monteux asked spejazz drum.
cifically for an American dance band drum
heads
across
their
bottom
have
snares
Jazz drums, you see,
The
counterparts.
different from those of their symphony
a
gut
and
the
symphonic
jazz drum uses a James metal snare
fact few conductors know.
snare
Having listed some of the indignities that harass the
percussionist, I should like to present several suggestions
that might constitute the beginning of a positive program
to emancipate him.
First, the percussion section should be valued as highly,
musically, as are the other sections in the orchestra. I
have seen aged string and woodwind players, ready to
retire, kept on in some orchestras in the guise of percussion players. The illuminating irony is that because of
the ineptness of percussion writing by the composers,
some of these new, inexperienced additions to the section
have been able to do a halfway creditable job.
Secondly, it should finally be realized that percussion
instruments can play melodically, and in a way that is
uniquely fresh and exciting.
In the third place, more composers should realize that
many of the individual instruments within the percussion
section are no less capable of being solo instruments than
are the violin, clarinet, trumpet, and so forth.
As a fourth point, I should like to see a merciful end to
pieces for percussion that utilize sirens, whistles, glass
plates, and the like. The inclusion of this kind of device
debases the percussion section and embarrasses its members.
-a
-a
A fifth suggestion is that composers today might try
writing percussion parts not merely subsidiary to what is
happening elsewhere among the protagonists of the orchestra, but also as leading voices, that share melodic and
rhythmic responsibilities with the other sections.
Obviously the percussion section is not capable of producing what (say) the string section can, any more than
can the brass section, for instance, but the point is that
the potential within the percussion section is considerable
and has barely been tried.
There is also the matter of recording. Almost invariably,
the percussion section is poorly reproduced on records.
This owes variously to the way the parts are written, the
way the instruments are placed in the recording studio,
and the way the microphones are placed. Remember that
the percussion section contains more individual instruments of distinctive color than any other section of the
orchestra. It has a range from low E below the bass clef
to high double C above the treble clef. The section can
furthermore be broken into three or four little sections
within itself. I suggest, on the basis of much frustrating
first -hand observation, that the percussion section, at least
in some recording sessions, should have its own set of
microphones. It is true that on rather rare occasions,
when a specific accent or sound is wanted, a separate microphone sometimes is placed alongside one of the percussion instruments, but the provision of separate microphones for the section is not a general recording rule by
any means. In multi -mike sessions, it probably should be.
Many of the pianissimo orchestral passages that contain background percussion writing would be given startling new color if the percussion instruments were to be
heard clearly
as perhaps the composer intended. For
to
these passages
be ideally heard, added microphones
must be set up, especially so that passages involving the
tambourines, the low register of the xylophone, the chimes,
Continued on page 126
the tam -tam, soft cymbal rolls,
-
JACKETS BY RODRIGUES
59
APRIL 1956
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Right
ì.
.
ot
Pr)ic.cimo
by JAMES G. DEANE
DO RECORD -MAKERS ever sample their own finished product?
What may seem a facetious question is quite seriously
intended. Recently I opened a handsome cellophanesealed album, extracted a shiny new disk, placed it with
care on the turntable, set the stylus in position and sat
down to listen. What issued from the speaker enclosure
across the room, along with the expected music, was a
sound which was neither heralded on the label nor prescribed by the score, a sound singularly alien and irritating. It was unnecessary to examine the record to identify
it. The record obviously was scratched.
How common is this experience? I have no way of knowing for sure. But it has occurred to me dishearteningly
often, and I suspect not to me alone.
A scratch on a record is in its own class as a device of
torture. Some insensitive listeners may be able to tolerate
it. For me, nothing can more readily rob music of all
its rapture. A persistent tick or pop, at war with the purposes of both composer and performer, quickly renders the
most inspired creation pointless. Like the repeated rustle
of some heedless person's program at a concert, a scratch
is a destroyer of mood and of meaning;
yet it is a thousand times worse than the
rustling paper, for it must be endured
permanently.
If this sort of desecration occurred
rarely, it could perhaps be excused
or
at least chalked off as one of the inevitabilities of mass manufacture. My
impression, however, is that it is not a
Honi soit qui
rarity. As a record reviewer I listen to
hundreds of newly issued classical records each year. These
arrive "factory fresh," presumably never before played
except possibly (by all the evidence a very slim possibility)
by factory inspectors. Increasingly these days, many arrive like the record mentioned above in packages sealed
against alien hands and dust. Yet an astonishing proportion of these review disks arrive blemished
blemished
seriously enough, moreover, so that if I had bought them
in a shop I would return them with a demand for either a
replacement or a refund. In several years' retrospect it
almost seems as if scratchless disks have been the minority, although I have made no systematic effort to keep
count.
Since reviewers receive records through the mail, it
may be theorized that some of this damage occurs outside
the factory. This means, however, that the packing is
inadequate.
There is at least circumstantial evidence that the problem
-
-
not one restricted to reviewers (who, one would suppose, would be more likely to get favored treatment, if
only for reasons of good public relations, than the reverse). Some record manufacturers in recent months have
begun enclosing each disk in an inner sleeve of paper,
cellophane, or plastic before inserting it in a box or cardboard jacket. More and more records are "factory sealed,"
although some of the seals
the kind that can be peeled
off and stuck back on again with nobody the wiser
seem suspiciously like a sales promotion stratagem. Such
"sealing" hardly offers much protection against either
dust or fingers.
Furthermore, raised centers and edges dubbed "GruveGard" (in the recently abandoned McCormick English
of the Chicago Tribune) have been adopted by the largest
maker of records, among others, expressly to avert abrasive
contacts in the vital areas. It seems probable that eventually all long -playing disks will have this format.
All this is tacit admission, on the record industry's part,
that all has not been well so far as the protection of record
surfaces is concerned. Obviously, the industry is seeking
to do something about it, and there is nothing wrong with
the innovations as far as they go. But
brand -new records inner -wrapped,
"gruve -garded," and sealed in cellophane
are still arriving in my mail
(and I must presume also at shops)
scratched or otherwise blemished.
My experience with marred records
antedates my activity as a professional
record critic. I confess frankly to being
mal y pense
fussy. I have always made it a practice to
deal with shops where a defective record will be replaced,
and many are the times when I have rejected an issue entirely because no acceptable copy of it was in the dealer's
stock. I hope, however, that no one will reject what I am
writing as the raving of an impossible perfectionist and
purist. I claim, actually, to be quite reasonable. But what
is reasonable about a scratched record, and what else
can it be called but an imperfect product?
I have often wondered how some of the illustrious musicians identified with some of the records on my shelves
would react if these records had come into their hands,
instead of mine. For example, I recently played through,
again, a boxed album issued a year or so ago bearing the
name of one of the most celebrated of conductors. It also
bears a rubber -stamped emblem indicating it was examined
by a factory inspector. On one disk there is a two -inch
sequence of grooves in which a steady tick competes with
the music. Another record has a half-inch gouge near the
is
6o
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HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
outside edge which even the most casual glance would
discover. One wonders how such an excavation would
appear under a microscope! In general my luck with
records of this particular conductor has not been good.
In the case of two other albums bearing his name, I was
forced to ask the manufacturer for replacements, but these
also were imperfect. In one of these instances I went through
ten fresh sets at a wholesaler's, but found none of them
scratchless. Only by putting both sets together, can I
manage to achieve a virtually unmarred performance.
Is this sort of thing exceptional? Evidently not, and
apparently it also has no particular relationship to price,
maker, packaging, or country of origin. I have received
marred records from factories both at home and abroad,
and in packages of both the simplest and most de luxe
kinds.
A disk issued as part of a special premium - priced series
touting the quality of its engineering arrived recently with
a jagged canyon an inch long on one side, making it unplayable. The damage could not have occurred after packaging, since the record was triply sheathed in cardboard
and plastic. Again, one of the most elaborate long -playlimited edition commanding
ing issues yet produced
a remarkable succession of
offers
price
an astronomical
of them, it must be adSome
and
pops.
snaps, crackles
to
the eye are almost imthat
defects
from
mitted, come
the ultimate judge.
is
unfortunately
ear
the
but
perceptible,
own have similar
my
disks
besides
the
of
Other copies
accident.
isolated
an
than
is
more
apparently,
flaws; here,
music
orchestral
of
the
album
bound
I have a beautifully
scratched
sides
are
of
eight
two
in
which
of one composer
badly, although not unplayably. A recent multi-record
choral recording, however, arrived with such major gashes
across its grooves that it would have been foolhardy to
trust a diamond point to them, and the album consequently
has never been reviewed. It would be possible to request
a replacement from a dealer or the manufacturer; but
sometimes one concludes that it just wouldn't be worthwhile, since the next set, too, might very well be marred.
I have cited cases in which the advantage has been
all with the manufacturer, for all these issues have been
in boxes, fancy albums,
packaged better than the average
of others, which
hundreds
list
I
could
or sealed cartons.
envelopes.
cardboard
in
ordinary
merely
came packaged
more
include,
to
has
come
packaging
Latterly, standard
which
wrapper,
inner
kind
of
some
and more commonly,
helps somewhat. But the point is that even where the
package has afforded reasonable protection, including protection from dust, scratches and gouges have occurred.
It is the inevitable conclusion that they must have occurred in the factory itself. Or, at any rate, some of them.
- -a
-
And I am certain this is true.
After the long years during which record collectors had
to put up with the hiss of shellac records, I suppose a
manufacturer considers that anyone who complains about
surfaces nowadays is merely carping. Actually, however,
flaws now stand out the more. They also seem to occur
more often, doubtless because plastic is more readily damaged than the harder material of 78 -rpm shellac disks.
Just how readily damage can occur is not, I think,
enough appreciated by the record -makers themselves, or
at least by a good many of the people charged with handling the finished product. Audible injury can result from
almost microscopic abrasions. These may appear negligible
to the eye; but they are far from negligible to the alert
ear, and sometimes the ear need not even be alert.
What causes such abrasions, as well as the more brutal
sort of damage? Since I have not visited a record factory,
I can only resort to surmise, but I think it is clear that
some of the fundamental rules of care that are continuously
being impressed on record purchasers are being violated
in the factory.
One record manufacturer with whom I once corresponded
on this question admitted that there had been difficulty
with careless insertion of records into their jackets. Apparently this company employed packers on a piece-work
basis, with the result, naturally, that the faster disks were
inserted the better the worker was paid. Obviously the
workers were tempted to overenthusiasm, and did not
bother to flex the jackets as they dropped the records in.
Before the packaging operation, there are doubtless
many other opportunities for damage. There are mechanical matters besides scratches about which the makers ought
to be concerning themselves, of course. Bubbles are not
a thing of the past. Numerous review records sent to me
are off- center, with sometimes an adverse effect on pitch.
Warpage is a really serious problem. Recently a new
opera set, in an elaborate sealed package, had one record
so badly misshapen that my pickup would not track on it.
In another operatic set, one of the records arrived with
a small wad of cardboard actually embedded in the plastic
with an acoustical effect that can be imagined. The
most casual kind of inspection should have kept this disk
from being shipped out.
Most warped and off-center records can be played. But
who wants to play a record with scratches? The answer is
obvious.
What needs to be done? If the picture drawn here is
in any way representative, the burden of action is clearly
on the factories. Their fundamental need is a new philosophy of quality -control, based on the premise that the perfection of the finished disk, as delivered to the customer,
is as important as the perfection of initial performance
and recording. And every person involved in the manufacturing process must be impressed with the necessity for
adhering to this principle, for one lapse can make the
whole process pointless.
This solution is easy to prescribe but not so easy to
bring about, however. I doubt if the record companies will
and more pains are
take more pains with their product
unless a better product is demanded.
what is required
This means that both the consumer and the reviewer must
become more vocal. Reviewers rarely trouble to mention
a scratch. This is understandable enough, for with limited
space a reviewer must deal with essentials, and surface
flaws can be chalked off as accidents. No critic wants to
risk damning a product unfairly, especially for a relatively
minor mechanical reason.
This point of view is generous to the manufacturer, but
Continued on page 123
how honest is it, with him or with
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61
APRIL 1956
www.americanradiohistory.com
timat
THE ART of high fidelity design has, always, until the
present, been stymied by the fact that various elements of a high -fidelity system are conceived and produced independently of one another. A good speaker
plus a good amplifier will not make as good a combination as an integral amplifier- speaker combination. I have
spent many arduous years studying the problems of high
quality system design, and have finally arrived at a solution
embodying a unique combination of features which yield
a degree of reproductive perfection beyond anything previously achieved.
It must be admitted that this goal has not been realized
by simple or inexpensive means. However, perfection is
not easily attained, you must realize, and the results of
the amplification system I shall describe justify the time
and money that must go into the design.
Everybody who has analyzed the basic problems of
www.americanradiohistory.com
amplifier design has learned that the major limiting factor
is the output transformer. This item is the link which
connects amplifier and loudspeaker, and has been the
stumbling block in the way to perfect integration of these
Output
two closely -related units in the hi -fi system.
transformers suffer from distortion, phase and frequency
discrimination, unbalance that varies with frequency, core
chatter, resistance loss, resonances caused by a corn bination of capacitive and inductive characteristics, and
similar faults. Is it any wonder, then, that it is horribly
difficult to make a good amplifying system, when we must
include a component with all these inherent deficiencies?
In addition, the cost of a good output transformer is very
high, which means that equipment manufacturers cannot
ordinarily afford to use the finest.
Hence, though money is not a prime consideration in
this project, it was decided to eliminate the output transformer from the Post-Ultimate amplifier. To do this,
though, we must begin by considering the function of
this component.
The output transformer is used to match impedances
between the output tubes and the loudspeaker. It transforms high -voltage, low- current electricity to low- voltage,
high- current, and it also serves to isolate the DC current
at the output tubes from the speaker voice coil. To get
rid of the transformer, then, some other method of connection between the output stage and the loudspeaker
must be utilized. We must find a method of tube operation and speaker connection which will permit connecting
a 16 -ohm speaker system directly to the tubes.
After lengthy research and development, and much consultation with audio authorities both here and in England,*
it was determined that the most feasible procedure was
the "brute force" method. A number of tubes connected
in parallel and operated as cathode -followers could give as
low a source impedance as desired. With tubes of the
5881 type, the cathode follower impedance when triode connected is about Soo ohms. Nineteen of these tubes
in parallel will lower the impedance to 15.8 ohms, an ideal
figure for commercially available speakers. This connection
was tested with admirable results, after a few minor difficulties were cleared up.
One of the major problems, of course, is to supply
heater and plate -supply power to 19 output tubes. Actually, the problem is twice as severe as it looks, since we
find that the number of tubes must be increased to 38
when the circuit is made push -pull, as will be described
later.
A rather ingenious solution to the heater supply problem was found. It was noted that nineteen 6.3 volt tubes
with their heaters connected in series require a 119.7 -volt
3% of the normal house AC
AC supply. This falls within
supply voltage. The other nineteen tubes, on the opposite
side of the push -pull circuit, are similarly connected in
series across the 117 -volt AC line.
An equally simple solution was found to the problem
of supplying plate voltage to the output stage. A voltage tripler supply, using 2- ampere selenium rectifiers operating directly from the 117 -volt line, furnishes 35o volts.
With 3o volts of fixed bias, the 5881s draw 5o milliamperes
each, so the 38 tubes will draw a total of 1.9 amperes,
which is comfortably handled by the supply as long as
sustained full output is not required. For musical program
material, which has only short -duration peaks, the supply is quite adequate. Such a transformerless supply,
incidentally, is not isolated from the line, and thus presents certain complications in normal living room use. If
everyone in the household is well insured, however, there
should be no occasion for concern.
A conventional small transformer -operated power supply (for isolation and hum reduction) takes care of the
power to the early stages and for the fixed bias on the
output tubes.
The most serious problem of all is that when the DC
current from the output tubes is passed through the
speaker voice coil, it places a DC bias on it, forcing the
cone out of the central linear portion of the magnetic gap.
This could be avoided with transformer coupling to isolate the DC. However, since one of the objects of the
design is to get rid of the output transformer, it is important to keep the tube cathodes grounded through the
speaker voice coil winding. Consequently, there can be
no isolation of the DC component if we are to get direct,
undistorted coupling of the AC signal component.
A method has been devised to resolve this difficulty.
This method not only solves the problem, but also has
other advantages so seemingly visionary that the author
has been reluctant previously even to disclose them. However, now that patent protection is being arranged, there
is really no reason why the entire high- fidelity industry
should not benefit.
The fundamental principle of this new design involves
t
*It is essential, in a project like this, to consult authorities in England. Otherwise jealous persons in the United States later will circulate rumors that your
revolutionary development has been in common use in Britain since 1927
(at least). although the taciturn British experimenters never have thought it
worthwhile mentioning.
www.americanradiohistory.com
operation of two loudspeakers which are connected in
push -pull for the AC signal, and push -push (or pull -pull, if
you wish) for the DC component. Thus the cones move
in a balanced, distortion -cancelling relationship for audio
voltages, but are held rigidly fixed for DC current. Obviously, the AC coupling is simple. The speakers are connected out -of- phase, so that the signal from one side (19
tubes) moves one cone forward, while the signal from the
other side moves the other cone backward, and vice -versa.
The novel method of cancelling out the DC movement involves a new principle, however. The speakers are housed
in a common baffle which is completely airtight. Air, or
other suitable gas, is pumped in under pressure with the
pressure calculated to force the cones out and negate the
effects of the DC current through them.
The total effect can be readily visualized. On an AC
cycle, one cone is moving out while the other is moving
in. This is literally perfect push -pull operation. The DC
cannot pull both cones in because of the pressure behind the cones. In one stride we have developed true
push -pull speaker operation with all of its advantages,
and we have eliminated all of the problems of output
transformers.
There are other, less obvious, advantages to the Post Ultimate design. The pressure in the speaker housing
can be adjusted to give optimum damping. The author
uses compressed gas in tanks for easy pressure regulation. The pressure gauge has been calibrated to indicate
damping factor, and is labelled P- Matic. The author has
found it advisable to use scented gas, so that leaks in
the system can be detected immediately.
There are some additional features of this design which
warrant discussion, since they represent slight departures
from conventional practice. First, speaker enclosure must
be completely airtight, of course; and it should also be
extremely rigid. The minimum wood thickness should
be 2 inches. Three thicknesses of Y4-in. plywood, laminated
together with neoprene sheet in between each two layers,
has been found to be non- resonant in the range from 14
cycles upwards. A slight resonance at 13 cycles, which
might tend to accentuate turntable rumble, or seismic
disturbances, can be damped out by keeping three to four
inches of viscous -damping fluid in the bottom of the enclosure. Since the enclosure is airtight, it is also viscous damping- tight, so leakage is no problem. Do
not raise the fluid level too high in the baffle,
though, or there will be excessive speaker dampening, with its attendant effect on listening quality.
The choice of loudspeakers must be made with
care. The best rz -inch drivers obtainable should
be used, and these should be carefully treated to
make them airtight. Six coats of silicone -based
varnish, type No. 45R6, should be applied to the
cone with 96 -hour drying periods between coats.
The rim edges should be carefully puttied after
mounting. Then lead connections should be made,
paying due care to proper phasing.
The stages of the amplifier which precede the
output stage may be fairly conventional, since
they have practically no effect on performance.
In the prototype design, it was decided to use cascode
stages throughout, in order to optimize the performance
and to keep noise more than roo db below average listening levels. These cascodes are connected in cross -coupled
fashion so as to combine phase inversion with high quality
voltage amplification. The output stage, being of low impedance output, should naturally be driven from a low impedance source. Therefore, the driver stage is, in effect,
a cross- coupled, cascode, cathode follower. This unique
combination I have designated the "Cathcrosscode," although there are probably some who will prefer to call
it the "Crosscathcode." Either is correct.
The final design consideration involves the feedback
loop, and here again the principle of integration
combining several functions in one circuit element
plays
an essential role.
It was found in early models of the Post -Ultimate design
that there was some heating of the speaker voice coils
from the repressed DC current. A small industrial refrigeration unit can easily neutralize this, but some of these produce subsonic vibrations, deemed undesirable. After many
experiments, it was found that adequate air -cooling of the
voice coil could be readily accomplished by adding an
AC signal component to keep the voice coils in motion.
This signal should obviously be kept out of the audio
range, so that it will not be heard. This is accomplished
by using a feedback system with controlled high- frequency
oscillation.
Oscillation occurs in a feedback circuit when the phase
shifts 18o degrees before the amplifier gain has decreased
by the amount of the feedback. In this case, the feedback is positive instead of negative, and adds to the signal,
producing regeneration. Since the Post -Ultimate design
has no output transformer, one of the major sources of
phase shift has been eliminated; so it is very difficult to
make the amplifier oscillate. This is remedied by introducing a small output transformer into the feedback loop,
so that it can shift the phase and produce supersonic signals to ventilate the voice coils. Thus the design is an
output -transformerless circuit with a transformer -coupled
--
feedback loop.
It is important to use a very fine -grade transformer in
this application, in order to put the oscillation at a very
high frequency where it will not intermodulate with program material or be audible in any way. No commercially available transformer of really suitable
quality has yet been found for this application,
although it is anticipated that transformer manufacturers will produce them as soon as demand is
sufficiently high. Meanwhile, the author has designed a practical unit using a 1.8 pound hypersil
toroidal core, with five separate winding sections,
each interleaved several times. A simple multi filar arrangement is used with one -half -mil mylar
insulation, oxide coated for inter -layer electrostatic shielding.
For those who wish to roll
their own, a subsequent article* will give full
winding data on this transformer, and kits may
soon be available.
Continued on page 124
*Elsewhere.
64
-
Ed.
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
musc makers
by
EVER SINCE last year's announcement by the Metropolitan Opera that
the Mozart Year would be celebrated
at Broadway and Thirty-ninth Street
with a new production of The Magic
Flute under Bruno Walter's direction,
there have been rumors that Columbia would profit from the occasion and
commit the production to LP. As it
turns out, Columbia is passing the occasion by. I don't know the reasons
why, but anyone who has seen and
heard the Meis new Magic Flute can
understand Columbia's diffidence. It is
not that the Metropolitan has done
Mozart's opera badly. Except for the
drab sets and costuming (to which a
record listener would remain oblivious
anyway ), everything about the production is in good taste. The all -American cast pays careful attention to
note- values and pitch, and the orchestra performs with reasonable opera house precision and sonority. But aside from the charmingly acted, sensitively phrased Papageno of Theodor
Uppman, not one of the singers communicates a sense of rapt devotion to
Mozart's unearthly music. In short,
this Magic Flute is efficient where it
it ought to be transfigured. Even Bruno Walter, whose talent for inspiring
musicians is considerable, seemed on
this occasion to have been operating at
less than his lofty best.
The elements lacking in the Magic
Flute were notably present in Walter's
mid -March performances of the Mozart Requiem with the New York
Philharmonic, and this I attribute to
the circumstance that he was working
with a magnificent quartet of singers
Irmgard Seefried, Jennie Tourel,
Leopold Simoneau, and William War field
all of them individual stylists
as well as accomplished vocalists. Although Columbia already has a Beecham recording of the Requiem in its
"icebox" for future release, this Walter- directed performance cried out to
be rewarded too; and besides, the conductor deserved a consolation prize for
-
ROLAND GELATT
not having been allowed to record The
Magic Flute. So, in two three -hour sessions, Columbia made its second Mozart Year version of K. 626. It sounded splendid in empty Carnegie Hall;
and, so far as I could ascertain from
the playback, the engineers did their
work well. However, Dr. Walter insists on listening to playbacks at such
an ear -strainingly low level that it was
really difficult to judge. He is one of
the few musicians I have encountered
who would sympathize with the habitual complaint of hi -fi wives on the
touchy subject of volume control.
Bruno Walter will be eighty in September. One would never guess it
from his appearance or from the vigorous schedule he has been following
in New York. During a seven -day
period he conducted one opera performance, held three rehearsals for the
Requiem, and conducted three Philharmonic concerts and two recording sessions. At the end he seemed not unduly fatigued.
in a totally unexpected place. Ernest
THE CURRENT VISIT of Salzburg's
Mozarteum Orchestra must be ranked
among the more agreeable phenomena
of the season's festivities. It is typical
of the smallish Austrian ensembles
that have become familiar to us on records these last few years, and hearing
proclaim. His recording of the Goldberg Variations has managed to impress almost everyone who has heard
it; the brilliance, understanding, and
originality of his playing is not to be
denied.
Glenn Gould came to New York in
mid -February for some more recording
sessions and at the very start ran into
piano trouble. None of the instruments proffered by Messrs. Steinway
had what Gould considered the right
sound for late Beethoven (the Opus
109 and III Sonatas being the princiIn the
pal items on the agenda )
course of ten days he tried recording
on four different grands, and at the end
gave it up as a bad deal and put off the
Beethoven sessions for two months.
When I met him at Columbia's Thirtieth Street studio, he was on Piano No.
2 and was complaining not only of it
but also of an ailing wrist for which he
Maerzendorfer conducts Mozart with
knowledge and affection, if not with
overwhelming interpretative insight;
yet somehow the warmth and amiability of the orchestra's music- making
seemed more than sufficient. The Mozarteum ensemble is now on a two month tour of the United States and
especially if
is well worth hearing
the soprano Emmy Loose is soloist,
as she was in New York.
-
NO YOUNG INSTRUMENTALIST
has ever been better publicized than
the twenty-three -year -old Canadian pianist Glenn Gould, thanks to his own
eccentricities and the inspired efforts
of Columbia's advertising and press
departments. The kind of selling campaign Columbia has waged on behalf
of this artist can be exceedingly dangerous, for it is apt to irritate sophisticated listeners to the point where they
can be very hard to please. But it so
happens that Gould seems to be every
bit as remarkable a musician as the ads
.
-
Bruno Walter drills Requiem soloists:
Seefried, Simoueau, Tourel, ll"arfield.
its blend of soft wind tone and relaxed
string articulation in Carnegie Hall
was rather like meeting an old friend
Continued on page 69
67
APRIL 1956
www.americanradiohistory.com
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needed "ultrasonic treatments." Despite the piano and the wrist, he was
playing the first movement of Opus
109 surpassingly well. Unfortunately,
he was also indulging in all sorts of
tongue clicks and other extraneous
noises which could be heard over the
microphone, and on the tape, only too
well. Columbia's Howard Scott remonstrated, not realizing then that the
whole session would come to nought
anyway. At the end of each take he
would remind Gould to be more quiet.
"I know I should," the pianist replied,
all contrition, "but it's hard. Even
harder than in Bach. This is really
very romantic music, you know." Back
he would go, and for the first few bars
would be as quiet as a mouse; but then
inevitably he would get carried away
by the lyricism and thrust of the music,
forget his good intentions, and start to
ruin an otherwise beautiful take. "I
couldn't put up with you," Howard
Scott told him with a stoical smile, "if
you weren't such a darn good musician."
Actually, Glenn Gould is not only
a fine pianist but a very likable young
man. The eccentricities seem not at all
artificial and effect -getting but part
of his own intense and unorthodox nature. At the Toronto Conservatory,
where he was a student in his early
teens, Gould worked as much on the
organ as on the piano, and this he feels
was an important and salutary influence on his musicianship. He still
thinks of a bass line in terms of foot
pedals, which he says gives him an
automatic appreciation of harmonic
structure that purely piano-trained instrumentalists seldom have. His work
on the organ also taught him not to
pound the keys but to produce accents
instead by subtle alterations of tempo.
Gould's favorite composers are Bach,
Richard Strauss, and Schoenberg
a strangely assorted crew. Although he
did not mention him as such, another
favorite composer is undoubtedly
Glenn Gould. He has been writing
music for years. At first he espoused
a rigorous twelve -tone style, but these
early works he now disowns. His latest piece is a string quartet in one
movement that lasts twenty-seven minaccording to Gould's
utes and is
richly Richard
own description
Straussian in its harmonic idiom. It
will be performed this summer in
Stratford, Ontario (he is musical director of the Stratford Festival, incidentally), and next winter in New
York, if all goes well.
AS PREDICTED HERE last February, the long- standing association of
HMV in England and Victor in the
United States will come to an end
upon the termination of the companies' present contract on April 30, 1957.
This step seemed inevitable ever since
HMV's parent company, Electric and
Musical Industries Ltd., bought control
of Capitol Records; for with that acquisition EMI became an important
competitor of RCA Victor's in this
country and not just a helpful ally
across the ocean. What made it seem
even more inevitable was the Radio
Corporation's current program aimed
at introducing the RCA trademark
throughout the world. "Music is a calling card," say Victor's George Marek,
"for the whole RCA family, and it is
vital for us to establish the RCA label
on phonograph records." In England,
of course, Victor recordings have always appeared on the HMV label, with
nary a mention of RCA.
Although exchange of new recordings will stop a year from now ( perhaps sooner ) , the Victor catalogue will
continue to list HMV material until
April 1958, and vice versa. Thereafter, with certain exceptions, all recordings made by HMV ( new and old)
will be deleted from the RCA Victor
line and all recordings made by Victor
will be deleted from the HMV line.
The exceptions will apply to large albums in which HMV and Victor material is intermingled. For example,
the HMV recordings of Tamagno,
Patti, and company will remain in
Victor's Fifty Years of Great Operatic
Singing so as not to disrupt the contents of a carefully compiled collec-
-
- -
Glenn Gould: too many tongue-clicks.
-
tion. Marek characterizes the parting
and well
as one of "sweet sorrow"
it should be after a marriage lasting
fifty -five years.
Simultaneously with its announcement of the HMV rupture, RCA Victor made it known that it had entered
into an association with the Decca
Record Company Ltd. whereby English
Decca will press and distribute RCA
Victor recordings in England, Germany, and Switzerland utilizing the
RCA label. In Germany and Switzerland the agreement goes into effect immediately; in England not until May 1,
1957. This new alliance between RCA
Victor and English Decca will not, it
is claimed, affect the status of London
Records in the United States. English
Decca will continue to use the London
label and the London Records sales organization in this country for the distribution of its own recordings. In
addition, however, English Decca will
also make, in consultation with Victor
executives, a certain number of European recordings every year for issue
here on the RCA Victor label. These
recordings will probably not use established Decca- London artists. On the
other hand, there will be some reciprocal loaning of artists for certain large
projects. For instance, Victor may in
the future be able to add Renata Tebaldi to an opera cast, and reciprocally
Decca- London may be able to borrow
Jussi Bjoerling for one of its operas.
Victor may also decide to use some of
Decca- London's exclusive orchestras
( say, the Vienna Philharmonic ) for
the European recordings that English
Decca will make for the RCA Victor
label.
The big unanswered question concerns the ultimate disposition of HMV
recordings in the United States. EMI
already has two flourishing companies
here, Capitol and Angel, each of which
would very much like to be awarded
the HMV catalogue. Which one of
the two will get it has not yet been
divulged, if indeed it has been decided. But there seems reason to believe
that Angel will be given the Red Label portion of the HMV list and Capitol the remainder. In any case, a new
label will have to be made for HMV in -USA disks, inasmuch as Victor still
controls the rights on this continent
both to the portrait of Nipper and to
the phrase "His Master's Voice."
Whatever new trademark is devised,
it will certainly seem strange to find
such artists as Schnabel and Flagstad
on any label other than Victor.
69
APRIL 1956
www.americanradiohistory.com
at the sign of the "Angel"
PIANO
-
OPERA
GIESEKING
VERDI OPERA CHORUSES (LA SCALA)
RAVEL: COMPLETE PIANO SOLO WORKS
Another historic Gieseking piano series.
Three 12" records (5 sides) Angel Album 3541 (35272.3-4)
Illustrated booklet, printed in France, containing essay
on Ravel by Gieseking, reminiscences of the composer
and notes on the tnusic, photographs, drawings, etc.
35272: Le Tombeau de Couperin, Sonatine in F sharp
minor, Valses Nobles et Sentimentales. 35273: Gaspard
de la Nuit, Prelude, Pavane pour une Infante Défunte,
Menuet sur le Nom de Haydn, A la manière de Borodine,
.4 la manière de Chabrier, Menuet antique, Jeux d'eau.
35271 (one -side record) Miroirs.
:
MOZART PIANO SOLO SERIES: ALBUM 9
9th of 11 records, devoted to Mozart's music for piano
solo, previously available only in gala Limited Edition.
Sonata No. 12 in F, K.332 ; 8 Variations in A, K.460;
Sonata No. 15 in C, K.545; 12 Variations in E flat, K.354;
Fantasy in C minor, K.396.
One 12" record
Angel 35076
Note for Mozart Year: Also available individually are
the first 8 records of the series: Angel 35068, 69, 70, 71,
72, 73, 74, 75.
Ask your dealer for complete contents.
-
VIOLIN
OISTRAKH
6th GREAT DAVID OISTRAKH ANGEL RECORDING
Prokofiev Violin Sonata No. 2 in D major, Opus 94a
Karen (nephew of Aram) Khatchaturian Violin Sonata
in G minor with Vladimir Yampolsky, pianist.
One 12" record (recorded in London)
Angel 35306
Other Angel -Oistrakh records: Beethoven Concerto
(35162), Bruch G minor and Prokofiev D major Concerti (35243), César Franck and Szymanowski Sonatas
(35163), Lalo Symphonie Espagnole (35205), Khatcha.
turian Concerto (35244).
ORCHESTRAL
BEETHOVEN
SYMPHONIES (KARAJAN - PHILHARMONIA)
Symphony No. 8 in F major (recorded in London)
9
Symphony No. 9 in D minor, with Final Chorus on
Schiller's Ode to Joy (recorded in Vienna)
Soloists: Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, Marga Höffgen,
Ernst Häfliger, Otto Edehnann.
Chorus of the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde.
Two 12" records
Angel Album 3544 B (35301 -2)
Previously released: Beethoven Symphonies with the
Philharmonia under Herbert von Karajan:
No. 1; Egmont, Leonore No. 3 Overtures
(35097)
No. 2; Coriolanus Overture
(35196)
No. 3 (Eroica)
(35000)
No. 4; aria, Ah Perfido (Schwarzkopf)
(35203)
No. 5; aria, Abscheulicher! (Schwarzkopf)
(35231)
No. 6 (Pastoral) (35080)
No. 7
(35005)
TWO HAYDN SYMPHONIES (MARKEVITCH)
Symphony No. 101 (The Clock), Symphony
Famous choruses (10) from Verdi's Nabucco, I Lombardi,
Emani, La Traviata, Il Trovatore, Otello, Aida.
Conductor: Tullio Serafin. La Scala Orch. and Chorus.
One 12" record
Angel 35265
Illustrated booklet with texts and translations
CHAMBER MUSIC
VEGH QUARTET PLAYS BARTOK QUARTETS
1st of 3 records devoted to the 6
One 12" record
1
and 2
Bartok string quartets.
Angel 35240
(Booklet with notes and musical illustrations)
ARMENIAN STATE STRING QUARTET
Borodin, Quartet No. 2; Shostakovitch, Quartet No. 1
One 12" record (recorded in London)
Angel 35239
Previously released: 1st recording of Tchaikovsky String
Quartet No. 2 in F major (35238)
ON THE
"LIGHT" BLUE LABEL
MUSIC OF BULGARIA
Ensemble of the Bulgarian Republic, Phillipe Koutev
conductor: recorded in Paris.
Wild, exciting, languorous, Oriental -sounding music.
Shouts, stamping, music of mountain flutes, drums, bagpipes and primitive stringed instruments, solo singers and
chorus in folk songs and dances.
One 12" record
Angel Blue Label 65026
ANGEL RECORDS FOR EASTER
BACH
B
MINOR MASS
Soloists: Schwarzkopf, Höffgen, Gedda, Rehfuss.
Cond.: Karajan. Orchestra, Chorus of Gesellschaft
der Musikfreunde, Vienna.
Angel Album 3500 C
HANDEL MESSIAH
Soloists, Huddersfield Choral Society,
Liverpool Philharmonic. Cond.: Sir Malcolm Sargent.
Angel Album 3510 C
GREGORIAN CHANT
Easter Liturgy and Christmas Cycle. Sung by La Schola
des Pères du Saint-Esprit du Grand Scholasticat de
Chevilly, France.
Angel 35116
ST. PAUL'S CATHEDRAL CHOIR
Easter Music, Motets, Madrigals, Anthems, Christmas
Carols. Recorded in London by "The Singing Boys of
Paul's."
Angel Album 3516 B
CAVALLERIA RUSTICANA (Mascagni)
Easter morning in a Sicilian village. Starring Callas,
Di Stefano and Panerai ; Serafin conducting. La Scala
Opera. D. H. Lawrence translation of original Verga
story incl. with libretto. Angel Album 3509.3 sides /L
SONGS OF CORSICA sung by Martha Angelici
Haunting, beautiful songs of Napoleon's "Island of
Fire and Granite" incl. delightful children's Easter
Song.
Angel Blue Label 65017
AND FOR THE CHILDREN
No. 102
Conductor: Igor Markevitch
Orchestre National de la Radiodiffusion Française
One 12" record
Angel
The Obcrnkirchen Children's Choir.
The Happy Wanderer
Angel Blue Label 64008
The Little White Hen
Angel Blue Label 64012
35312.
VIVALDI: THE FOUR SEASONS (GIULINI)
Conductor: Carlo Maria Giulini
Philharmonia String Orchestra
One 12" record
ANGEL RECORDS, ELECTRIC
a
70
Angel 35216
&
el Veemird5
MUSICAL INDUSTRIES (U.S.) LIMITED, 38 WEST 48 ST., NEW YORK CITY
& Musical Industries Ltd., Hayes, Middlesex, England
subsidiary of Electric
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
1
..D!L11 .i
Records in Rev ic
Reviewed
by
PAUL AFFELDER
ALFRED FRANKENSTEIN
ROBERT KOTLOWIT7_
NATHAN BRODER
ROLAND GELATT
HOWARD LAFAY
Classical Music, listed by composer
71
Advertising Index
Recitals and Miscellany
Music Between
72
86
90
.
CLASSICAL
C. G. BURKE
JOHN
F.
PHILIP L. MILLER
JOHN
S. WILSON
ALBINONI
Concerti a cinque, Op. 9
Ferraresi, violin; Michele Visai,
Fiorentino Milanesi, oboes; Italian Baroque
Ensemble, Vittorio Negri Bryks, cond.
Vox DL 193. Three 12 -in. $54.94.
Cesare
Tomaso Albinoni, a contemporary of Vivaldi and Torelli, was until a few years ago
mostly a name in the musical dictionaries.
Now, thanks to a few scholars and some
enterprising record companies, he is being
rescued from that dusty state. And high
time, too. For aside from his historical
importance (he played a considerable part
in the development of the concerto for a
solo instrument with orchestra), he has
much to offer in the way of pleasure to the
open- minded music -lover. Of the twelve
concertos that make up his Opus 9, four are
for a solo violin, four for a solo oboe, and
four for two oboes. The orchestra consists
of strings and continuo.
Each concerto comprises three movements, in the pattern fast -slow -fast. The
fast movements have a charming, lighthearted grace. Like Vivaldi, Albinoni writes
lively, clear -cut themes. He has an apparently inexhaustible supply of these, and
works them out interestingly. While he is not
as venturesome harmonically as Vivaldi, he
is capable of skillful counterpoint when he
feels like it.
No wonder Bach thought
highly enough of this composer to transcribe some of his pieces.
Ferraresi plays his sometimes elaborate
and bravura passages with fine style and
tone, and the two oboists are also satisfactory. Vox has done up this limited edition in its usual handsome fashion, including informative notes by Remo Giazotto,
author of a 360 -page monograph on Al-
APRIL 1956
INDCOX
-ilia.
Dialing Your Disks
Spoken Word
The Best of Jazz
Brahms Orchestral Discography, Part I
binoni. The only criticism I have of the
recording is that the harpsichord is inaudible
on Sides t and 6.
N. B.
ARNE
1
RAY ERICSON
JAMES HINTON, JR.
Cornus
Margaret Ritchie, Elsie Morison, sopranos;
William Herbert, tenor; The St. Anthony
Singers; Ensemble Orchestral de L'OiseauLyre, Anthony Lewis, cond.
OISEAU -LYRE OL 50070/71.
Two ii -in.
$9.96.
Thomas Augustine Arne, a younger contemporary of Handel, is perhaps best known
in this country as the composer of Rule,
Brittania. Except for a few settings of
Shakespeare's songs, he was not much better
known in England until recent years. (In
1922, just before a revival of his music to
Cornus was to take place, a firm of photographers in Bond Street sent an invitation to
Dr. Arne to sit for them!) This music for
an adaptation of Milton's masque was extremely popular after its first performance in
1738, and it is easy to see why. It is simple
and melodious, mostly jolly and yet not
lacking in elevation and solemnity when
the situation calls for those qualities. The
music consists of songs, recitatives, ballads,
dances, and a few short choruses. All three
soloists turn in highly polished performances, with fine legato phrasing, clean trills,
and no sense of strain despite the high tessitura sometimes involved. The whole thing
is kept nicely animated by Professor Lewis,
one of those rare conductors who can combine scrupulous scholarship with vital
music -making.
N. B.
BACH
Mass in B minor
Lisa Schwarzweller (s); Lore Fischer (a);
Helmut Kretschmar (t); Bruno Müller
(bs); Choir of the Dreikönigskirche (Frankfurt) and Collegium Musicum Orchestra,
Kurt Thomas, cond.
OISEAU -LYRE OL
90
92
94
97
50094/6.
Three
12 -in.
$14.94.
A special effort seems to have been
made
here to achieve a just balance between
chorus and orchestra, between vocal soloists
and obbligato instruments, and in most
cases it has been successful. In the big
movements that employ most of the performers, the orchestra is not just a blur in
the background: one can hear the various
counter -melodies and accompanying figures.
Only the trumpets, very well played, are occasionally too loud; they sometimes dominate the ensemble even when they have only
subordinate material to play. Within the
chorus itself the balance is not quite as
good. The men are frequently not strong
enough; and the tenors, particularly, are
sometimes barely audible.
Thomas, an experienced and capable
conductor, favors slowish tempos and a
somewhat reserved approach. The soloists
are all good. Schwarzweller sings accurately
and flexibly with a lovely, if smallish, tone.
The Laudamus to is allotted here to Fischer,
who has a pleasant voice but does not always articulate the ornaments clearly. Her
Qui sedes and Agnus Dei are more successful.
Kretschmar does the Benedictus and his share
of the Domine Deus nicely; and Müller is his
usual competent self. What one misses in
the work of these artists, and indeed in the
performance as a whole, is that special incandescence, that eloquence, which one
finds in much of the Karajan (Angel) and
Scherchen (Westminster) recordings. N. B.
BEETHOVEN
Concerto for Violin
and Orchestra, in D,
Op. 6r
Wolfgang Schneiderhan, violin; Berlin
Philharmonic Orchestra, Paul van Kempen,
cond.
DECCA DL 9784.
12 -in.
$3.98.
Differs from all other recorded versions by
an imperturbable reliance on massive majesty
71
-.i
from end to end. This is effected by a very
slow and continuously regular pace in the
external movements, by the use of a huge
force of strings with the bass prominent, by
a rejection of lively excursion, and by a
very commendable symmetry in the construction of large crescendos. It is a performance predominantly orchestral, with the
proficient soloist forced into some squareness of phrasing and a few inequalities of
projection by the deliberate rate of progress.
Impressive heavy sound, concert hall variety,
with a rolling reverberation but good bite
notwithstanding. The disk is worth praise
for the earnestness with which it pursues
an unbeaten track. Music- lovers who like
the Beethoven Violin Concerto slow will
find none slower.
C. G. B.
BARTOK
Music for Strings, Percussion, and Celesta
Philharmonic Promenade
Adrian Boult, cond.
Orchestra, Sir
WESTMINSTER W -LAS 7021.
12 -in.
$7.50.
One of the major features of this work is
its exploitation of spatial effects. The instruments are disposed on the stage according to a special plan described in the score,
and their placement is important to the final
result. Halsey Stevens, in his book on Bartók, therefore says the piece defies ordinary
disk recording. In his notes issued with
this disk, James Lyons says Westminster is
As
glad to take up Stevens' challenge.
referee, the writer of this review must declare Stevens the winner. There is not the
slightest trace of the dimensional effect
Bartók intended, but the performance is
very good and so is the recording, though
it seems rather less worthy of being sold at
a premium price than other issues in the
same series.
A. F.
BEETHOVEN
Sonatas for Piano: No. 23, in F minor
( "Appassionata "), Op. S7; No. 32, in C
minor, Op.
III
high prowess. Two months ago the Boston
Symphony Orchestra braved the same test
with a superb Unfinished backed by a Fifth
less than Olympian. Here the high scoring
is made by a resolute and mighty Fifth,
with the slowest Unfinished yet threatening
never to finish at all. It is unlikely that
Schubertians will accept a first movement
in which the restraint is almost tangibly
felt, or fail to be disturbed by the presentation of two slow movements in a row , despite the beauty of the one designated slow
by the composer and despite many orchestral
felicities.
Whereas the Fifth in a noble performance
offers only one major vulnerability, in the
slightly pressed tempo of its finale. In
music as sensitive to changes of time as
Beethoven's symphonies, a quickened pate
like this is not taken without careful thought:
it replaces the grandeur of triumph by exultation in victory. If the diminishment be
correct, this version is equal to any, with the
demanding, storming force of its first movement, the lovely variations of its second in
undulant weft, and the metrical earthquake
of the trio in the scherzo pronounced with
incontrovertible decision. The orchestra
under this master is one of the country's
best and has some of the curt dramatic delivery of the regretted NBC Symphony
Orchestra. The record is the first of the
group for Epic
short skip from Columand sounds big and brave and true
bia
after the ears have taken a minute to habituate themselves to a hall -tone inclined to
dryness.
C. G. B.
-
-a
BOCCHERINI
Symphonies: in
(
C, Op. 16,
No.
3;
in B Jlat
"F,nrèbre ")
Vienna Orchestral Society, F. Charles Adler,
cond.
UNICORN 1017. 12 -in. $3.98.
The gentle work in C major, scored for four
flutes, four horns. and strings, is a honeypot
Julius Katchen, piano.
LONDON
LL
1233. I2 -in.
$3.98.
Both are remarkably good, Op. 111 so
beautiful that it will not be subjected here
to the usual commendatory adjectives. In
the Appassionata, music more tolerant of
pianistics, Mr. K.
dazzler when he
wishes
wishes to underplay a little in
the two fast movements, and makes taut
drama by snubbing the riotous possibilities.
A sense of breathlessness is induced by the
very tidiness of a diminuendo, and tension
is obtained by a restraint always hinting of
power to come. A fine record on all points
the
except what may be a minor one
intrusion, into the utmost delicacies of the
variations in Op. 111, of a faint, whispered,
barely audible tinkle of treble seeped from
the adjoining grooves. Were the recording
less precise this would not be noticed.
C. G. B.
-
-a
-
BEETHOVEN
Symphony No. 5, in C minor, Op. 67
¡'Schubert: Symphony No. 8, in B minor
("Unfinished")
Cleveland Orchestra, George Szell, cond.
EPIC LC 3195. 12 -in. $3.98.
An aggregate of more than fifty LP editions
of this universal pair has been issued. New
ones must face grim inspection and reveal
72
ADVERTISING INDEX
Angel Records
Capitol Records
Chambers Radio Corp.
Columbia Records
Decca Records, Inc.
Epic Records
Ficker Recording Service
Leslie Creations
Lippincott, J. B., Co. ._.
London International, Inc.
London Records
McGraw -Hill Book Co.
Mercury Records Corp.
Music Box
Nuclear Products Co.
Origan, Inc.
Phonotapes, Inc.
RCA Camden Records
Record Market
Record Review Index
Robins Industries Corp.
Schwann, W.
Sonotape Corp.
Vanguard Recording Corp.
Vox Productions, Inc.
Walco (Electrovox Co., Inc.)
Westminster Recording Co.
70
73
105
87
75,96
77
104
Io5
74
102
89
79
91
105
103
105
.
of pleasant savor, but Mr. Adler, a most
circumspect leader of this kind of music,
has withheld the spices that only a conductor
can inject. He seems to be a man of taste
who prefers error by reticence to the blunder by fervor: his delicate slow movements
have both line and feeling, but he does not
whip up a froth, no doubt fearing scum.
The sweet, loving lament of the Funeral
Symphony offers a better display of lead:rship, perhaps because the title and thc subtitled movements suggest the conference of
an interpretational liberty not inherent in
the bald tempo indications of the other
symphony. At any rate, the elegiac wellborn death is supple and responsive in this
playing, the central movements particularly.
This is music that penetrates deeper at
the second hearing: a certain conventionalism is backed by a sturdy fiber not at once
apparent. Satisfactory sound, without distinction or large blemish, but which requires careful adjustment to sweeten its
treble.
C. G. B.
BRAHMS
Hungarian Dances
Vienna Staatsoper Orchestra, Mario Rossi,
cond.
VANGUARD 473.
12 -in.
$4.98.
Brahms assembled some of them, and composed some of them, twenty -one dances in
all, published for piano four -hands and the
most popular transcribed for anything available. Brahms orchestrated Nos. 1, 3, and
lo; Dvorak gave homage to his patron by
setting the last five, and others are known
best in orchestrations by Hallen and Par low. Vanguard retained Mr. Robert Scholium for the orchestration of Nos. 4, 8, and 9.
The only other record containing the
twenty -one is not satisfactory.
Sixteen
dances are encompassed in the aggregate of
a dozen records devoted each to an arbitrary selection. The best of these, and the
best of any orchestral record of a substandal sample of the Dances, is an old Columbia
holding eight conducted by Fritz Reiner.
This is an enlightenment of the possibilities
of virtuosity in this music.
Failing a
Reiner edition of them all, we can be happy
with the spirited results of the Rossi leadership and the serious, balanced, deep -hued
Vanguard recording. The insistence on the
name Reiner here is perhaps unfair to the
really considerable qualities of the record
under immediate scrutiny, not least because the Reiner disk was made after what
must have been arduous preparation, by
an orchestra at the time his to command
alone; but we all want revelation, and mere
excellence is not that. A critic
who does
not buy the records he hears
ought to
feel shame in recommending the purchase
of the Vanguard and the Reiner -Columbia,
for both completion and revelation; but
critics dare not feel shame.
C. G. B.
--
It)t
83
105
Ion
105
103
104
93
95
94
81
BRAHMS
Liebeslieder Walzer, Op. 52
Neue Liebeslieder Walzer, Op. 65
Elisabeth Roon (s); Maria Nussbaumer (c);
Murray Dickie (t); Norman Foster (bs);
Akademie Kammerchor; Joseph and Grete
Dichler, piano duet; Ferdinand Grossmann,
cond.
VOX PL 946o.
12 -in.
$4.98.
Continued on page 74
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
Enter
the
dark
and
secret
world
of
t
the
Spanish
Juitar
There are many ways to play a guitar. With a
pick, it's the Jazz Guitar. Play it with a steel
bar, you've got a Hawaiian Guitar. Use ten
fingers -and study thirty years -and you may
be able to play the classic Spanish Guitar.
It sounds lonely, intimate, unlike any music
you've ever heard. It opens a private door to
the dark, rich, brooding world of brilliant
'tar Mausic
of Ltin
Spanish composers Sor, Tarrega and Torroba.
But it's a seldom opened door. Critics recognize less than a handful of men as masters
of this astonishingly difficult instrument. One
of them is the gentleman pictured above, the
great Brazilian guitarist, Laurindo Almeida.
Everywhere he's played -in South America,
Europe and in this country -he's led his
audience into the strange and secret world
depicted by the Spanish Guitar.
You'll enter this world soon after you touch
needle to either of Mr. Almeida's two new
Capitol Recordings-"Guitar Music of Spain"
or "Guitar Music of Latin America." Collections of the finest pieces ever written for the
Spanish Guitar, they're recorded by Capitol in
flawless "Full Dimensional Sound."
You'll play them many, many times.
erica
taurindo Almeida
Incomparable High Fidelity in
Full Dimensional Sound
P-p21
APRIL 1956
73
Here's the book you've
been asking
for
...
Brahms's delightful sets of Love Song Waltzes
rank among his gayest, most frankly romantic compositions. Alas, the artists who perform them on this record do not sound as if
they are very gay or romantically inclined.
Their performance is little more than a perfunctory run- through of the music. Furthermore, there is no explanation for using a
small chorus to reinforce the solo quartet in
certain of the waltzes, though it doesn't
seem to hurt the tonal balance. Reproduction is clear but sometimes too resonant.
P. A.
BRAHMS
Sonatas for Viola and Piano: No. 1, in F
minor, Op. 120, No. r; No. 2, in E-flat,
Op. 120, No. 2
Paul Doktor, viola;
piano.
WESTMINSTER 18114.
$3.98).
the High Fidelity
RECORD ANNUAL
1955
edited by Roland Gelata
Don't fail to get the first volume
(containing High Fidelity record reviews from July 1954 through July
1955) in what is planned as a permanent and continuing series
the only
one which will keep you up -to -date
with the thousands of long -playing
-
records released every year.
These are the reviews that one
reader called "marvels of literacy"
delightfully readable as well as fair and
accurate audio and musical criticism.
Edited by Roland Gelatt, the reviews have been entirely rearranged
and organized for easy reference. In
permanent form they will be a treasured addition to your library as well as an
invaluable shopping guide.
-
Composers (from Albeniz to Zeller)
are arranged alphabetically; performers are indexed.
More information about more rec
ords for less money than in any other
record review collection
only $4.95.
-
Publishei by J. B. Lippincott.
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ANNUAL-
1955.
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NAME
ADDRESS
74
$4.95
enclosed
Nadia
12 -in.
Reisenberg,
$4.98 (or
It has taken until now for an LP recording
of the two Brahms Clarinet Sonatas to come
out in the alternate versions for viola,
though both were available in several editions on 78 -rpm disks. The present record
was worth waiting for. Doktor and Reisenberg are an expertly matched sonata team.
Both play with lyricism and extreme sensitivity to the subtle demands of the corn poser's phrase lines; and though neither
artist has a big tone, the relatively intimate
microphone placement allows them to come
through clearly, smoothly, and in fine balance. It seems unlikely that a more desirable
performance of these two sonatas, in the
viola version, will soon be forthcoming.
For those who may prefer the edition for
clarinet, there is a superb recording by Kell
and Rosen, recently issued by Decca. P. A.
BRITTEN
Seven Sonnets of Michelangelo
The Holy Sonnets ofJohn Donne
Alexander Young, tenor; Gordon Watson,
piano.
WESTMINSTER 18077.
12 -in.
$4.98 (or
$3.98).
Britten's lovely settings of the Michelangelo
sonnets were recently recorded quite definitively for London by Peter Pears and the
composer himself. Here the cycle is almost
as well performed by Alexander Young
and Gordon Watson, but the set is flawed
by a mistake in the pressing. No. 6 is
missing; No. 7 turns up on Band 6 instead,
and the narrow Band 7 is merely an echo of
the last phrase of No. 7.
The Donne sequence is new to records
and is very commendably performed by
Mr. Young and Mr. Watson, though some
of the phrases put a strain on the tenor.
The cycle dates from 1947, seven years
later than the Michelangelo cycle.
The
prickly language and metaphysical ideas of
Donne's poetry seem unlikely material for
musical setting, but Britten is as ingenious
as ever in creating apt musical figures for
the words and sentiments, and he develops
these figures in marvelously subtle ways as
the poetic ideas develop or alter. Only
Nos. 6, 7, and 9, of exceptional beauty,
are likely to have immediate appeal on initial hearing, but the listener will find the
other songs just as rewarding on further acquaintance. Texts and a translation of the
Michelangelo cycle are printed. Highly
recommended, even with a song missing.
R. E.
BUSONI
Arlecchino
Kurt Gester (narrator), Arlecchino; Elaine
Malbin (ms), Colombina; Murray Dickie
(t), Leandro; Ian Wallace (b), Ser Matteo;
Geraint Evans (b), Abbate Cospicuo; Fritz
011endorff (bs), Doctor Bombasto. Glyndebourne Festival Orchestra, John Pritchard.
cond.
RCA VICTOR LM 1944. 12 -in. $3.98.
completely enchanting "theatrical capriccio in one act" which reveals aspects of its
composer's personality not to be found in
his instrumental works. The opera, written
in 1917 to a libretto by Busoni himself, is a
commedia dell'arte piece with typical cornmedia dell'arte characters involved in a typical situation. The cynical Harlequin, the
trusting husband, the pert wife, the sentimental lover, the boozing doctor and abbé
have been stock personages for centuries,
but Busoni gives them unique power and
life through the brilliance of his music
and the wit of his German verse.
Stylistically the score is not easy to pin
down. In its mosaiclike handling of short,
effervescent motifs it reminds one a little
of Verdi's Falstaff, though its atmosphere is
totally different. It is full of parodies on
Italian opera in its sillier phases, and it has
a flourish or two to remind one of Rosen kavalier.
(This may arise from nothing
more than 011endorff's Ochsian interpretation of the role of Dr. Bombasto.) One of
the most remarkable features of the score
is that the central role, Harlequin, is spoken
throughout. This places Harlequin in an
eerily different dramatic dimension from all
the others, silhouettes him against the music
in a most extraordinary way, and provides
certain rhythmic and coloristic effects of a
most unusual kind. Conceivably, Alban
Berg went back to Arlecchino for the spoken
passages in his Wozzeck.
The performance is in the great Glyndebourne tradition, which is to say that it is
worked out to perfection in the smallest
detail and comes through in the liveliest
and subtlest style. The recording is magnificent, and a complete libretto in German and
English is provided.
A. F.
A
CHOU
And the Fallen Petals
tGuarnieri: Suite IV Centenario
tRosenberg: Louisville Concerto
Louisville Orchestra, Robert Whitney, cond.
LOUISVILLE
ORCHESTRA COMMISSIONS LOU
56 -1. 12 -in. Available on subscription only.
The composition by Chou Wen -Chung, a
young Chinese now living in this country,
is certainly the most unusual of the many
commissioned works recorded by the Louisville Orchestra, and it may be the best of
them as well. Its prologue and epilogue
exhibit an unparalleled gift for the handling
of Chinese thematic materials in terms of
the Western orchestra. Its much longer
middle section is in a style Chou calls
"melodic brushwork." This is actually not
melodic at all; it involves extremely pungent,
dramatic, shattering exploitation of timbres
and rhythms in an atonal, dissonant, athematic manner quite like that of Edgard
Varèse, with whom
if I am not mistaken
Chou has studied. As in the case of
Schoenberg, an approach to music that
-
-
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
seemed violently extreme and intensely personal turns out to have unexpectedly seminal possibilities.
The piece by Camargo Guarnieri is a
pleasant affair in Brazilian folk style; it
derives its title from the fact that it is dedicated to the 400th anniversary of the city
of Sao Paulo, where the composer lives. The
concerto by the Swedish composer Hilding
Rosenberg is a lushly romantic thing which
I barely managed to listen to once -and at
A. F.
that because I was paid to do so.
DEBUSSY
Sonata for Violin and Piano
tFauré: Sonata for Violin and Piano,
No. z, in A major
Jan Tomasow, violin; Franz Holetschek,
GOT
SP firha -FCver?
these new DECCA ALBUMS
will pull you through!
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these rousing new Decca albums will bring
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piano.
VANGUARD VRS 464.
12 -in.
$4.98.
Undistinguished interpretations of both
works, with the Fauré somewhat the better
of the two. Mr. Tomasow's proclamatory
style overpowers Debussy's rarefied sonata,
and the four -square playing of Mr. HoletR. G.
schek does not help.
FAURE
Sonata for Violin and Piano, No. r, in
A major
See Debussy: Sonata for
Violin and Piano.
-
GEISER
Symphony in D minor
-See
Sweet Adelines: Girls'
Official Recordings; 1955
Home On The Range:
Bing Crosby; 'I'm An
Old Cowhand,' 'There's
Medalist Winners;
A
Barbershop Quartets;
`A
Good Man Is Hard To
Find,' etc.
(DL 8234, ED 2325 -6-7)
Gold Mine In The
Sky,' `Mexicali Rose,'etc.
(DL 8210, ED -566 )
Oboussier:
Antigone.
:...............
GLAZUNOV
.,,,_....
Concerto for Violin and Orchestra, in A
minor, Op.
See Sibelius: Concerto
for Violin and Orchestra.
82-
GRIEG
Concerto for Piano and Orchestra, in A
minor, Op. i 6
tRachmaninoff: Rhapsody on a Theme of
Paganini
Abbey Simon, piano; Hague Philharmonic,
Orchestra, Willem van Otterloo, cond.
EPIC LC 3182. 12 -in. $3.98.
Abbey Simon is a high- caliber young American pianist, here saddled with two works
already superlatively recorded several times.
His performances hold interest primarily
for the intelligent way in which he varies
his treatment of the two scores. His Grieg
Concerto is all -out romanticism
warm,
large in scale, yet never extravagant. The
big conception sometimes leads him into
punching, sometimes into too fast a tempo,
as in the third movement. I am sure he hits
all the notes accurately, but some of them
just do not sound at his tempo. On the
other hand, the Rachmaninoff Rhapsody
is treated with the discretion and delicacy
it deserves. The playing and the mood are
mercurial, exquisitely shaded for an unusually appealing, non -splashy performance.
The recording is close-to and provides
transparent textures and good balance between ensemble and soloist. The Hague
Philharmonic plays rather drily and stiffly
under Willem van Otterloo's routine conducting.
R. E.
-
GUARNIERI
Suite IV Centenario
the Fallen Petals.
APRIL 1956
-
See Chou:
Ani/
Rendezvous In Tahiti: Sentimental Souvenirs:
Eddie Lund & His Tahi- The Four Aces, featurtians; `Ia Neke,' 'Mama ing Al Alberts; `Mister
Iti E Papa E,' 'Pia Hi- Sandman, "Dream,' `Tell
Me Why,' etc. (DL 8227,
nano,' etc.
ED 2004, 2170, 2323 )
(DL 8189, ED -763 )
THE
LADY
SINGS
,q
BILIiE
HOLIDAY
"Lady" Sings: Billy
Holiday; `Easy Living,'
`What Is This Thing
Called Love ?', `Them
There Eyes,' etc.
(DL 8215, ED -775,
ED 2031)
The Court Jester: Danny
Kaye sings selections
from the Paramount picture; `Life Could Not
Better Be,' etc.
(DL 8212, ED-776)
"DL" indicates 33% Long Play Recordings
"ED" indicates 45 Extended Play Records
DECCA® RECORDS
a New World of Sound
"You Can Hear The Difference!"
HINDEMITH
This is almost too good to be natural. Although it points up the occasionally unusual and original scoring that Liszt employed, it also dries out music that should
be cumulative in its aural effect. Moreover,
Sir Adrian Boult's conducting, always sober
and musicianly, seems rather too precise
and proper for music associated with gypsies
and death revels. But Edith Farnadi's Liszt
is ever worthy of attention, and the intimacy
of the recording is flattering to her sensitive,
individual style.
R. E.
Kleine Kammermusik, Op. 24, No. 2
Sonata for Oboe and Piano
French Wind Quintet; Pierre Pierlot, oboe;
Anne d'Arco, piano.
LONDON DL 53007.
$2.98.
Io -in.
The vivacious, iconoclastic, Eulenspiegelish
Hindemith of 1922 speaks in the famous
Kleine Kammermusik, which is probably the
most frequently performed woodwind quintet of modern times. The oboe sonata of
1939 dates from a more academic and didactic period, when, among many other
things, Hindemith embarked on a program
of writing at least one sonata for every
instrument in the orchestra. Those for
flute, clarinet, bassoon, trumpet, and trombone have already been recorded. The oboe
sonata is a pleasant addition to the series,
but it is not as important as those for the
Perclarinet or the brass instruments.
formances and recordings are of excellent
A. F.
quality.
MASSENET
Scènes pittoresques; Scènes alsaciennes
Orchestre de la Société des Concerts du
Conservatoire de Paris, Albert Wolff, cond.
LONDON
phony No. 3)
12 -in.
$3.98.
Wilma Lipp (s), Laura; Esther Rethy (s),
Bronislava; Rosette Anday (ms) , Palmatica;
Rudolf Christ ( t) , Symon; Kurt Preger
The Honegger of the 192os was a potentially great composer, and one of his principal avenues of expression was the short
tone poem. It is surprising how many of
these works of Honegger are in the current
record catalogues (Pacific 231, Rugby, Pas-
(t) , Colonel 011endorf; August Jaresch
(t), Henrici, Onuphrie; Richard Sallaba (t),
Richtofen, Rej; Erich Kaufmann (t),
Schweinitz; Franz Bierbach (b), Wangenheim; Eberhard Waechter (b) , Jan; Karl
Doench ( bs) , Enterich. Chorus and Orchestra of the Vienna Volksoper, Anton
Paulik, cond.
VANGUARD VRS 474/5. Two 12 -in. $9.96.
torale d'été, Mouvement symphonique No. 3),
and the list is now further enriched with
the Chant de joie, which fulfils its title to
perfection. Horace victorieux and Le Chant de
Nigamon remain to be done. The Honegger
of the 194os who wrote the Symphonie
liturgique was a very different person. He
was a past master of his craft, and his symphonies are always very tuneful, wonderfully
orchestrated, and extremely rich in harmonic
tissue, but they are the work of a man who
has written far too much movie music;
they have everything a symphony ought to
have except urgency and depth. Denzler's
interpretations are excellent, and so is the
A. F.
recording.
KODALY
Dances from
Galánta;
$3.98.
Der Bettelstudent
Denzler, cond.
1294.
12 -in.
MILLOECKER
Paris Conservatory Orchestra, Robert F.
LL
1298.
Once again the venerable Albert Wolff has
been able to put new life, vigor, and artistic
refinement into a team of overworked war
horses. The crisp orchestral playing is well
reproduced, save for the cello solo in the
third movement of Scènes alsaciennes, which
is a little weak in relation to the rest of the
P. A.
ensemble.
HONEGGER
Chant de joie; Symphonie liturgique (Sym-
LONDON
LL
Fashions in popular musical theater are
changeable, but there may still be older
people around who can remember the
days when the name of Karl Millöcker was
quite as much to be reckoned with on
Broadway as are the names of Rodgers and
Hammerstein and Cole Porter now. In
New York around the turn of the century,
adapted Austrian -German operetta was the
rage and "Millöcker" was even more surely
a stamp of quality and success than
"Strauss" or " Suppé." In fact, looking
Dances from
WESTMINSTER W -LAB 7020.
12
-in.
.
$7.50.
Rodzinski treats Kodály's sensitive orchestration with special care and respect and
seems to take particular delight in the old
Hungarian tunes which that orchestration
embodies. The recording is the last word.
A. F.
A lovely piece of work all 'round.
Mozarteans four: New Music Quartet.
LISZT
Hungarian Fantasia for Piano and Orchestra; Totentanz
Edith Farnadi, piano; Philharmonic Promenade Orchestra, Sir Adrian Boult, cond.
WESTMINSTER W -LAB 7018.
I2 -in.
$7.50.
This recording has such remarkable clarity
and definition as to make these large -ensemble pieces sound like chamber music.
76
MOZART
Quartets: No.
2, in D, K. 155; No. 3, in G,
K. 156; No. 5, in C, K. 157; No. 5, in F,
K. 158
New Music Quartet.
COLUMBIA ML 5003. 12 -in. $3.98.
Thanks to LP, No. 2 has had a currency on
records it never had in concert, and thanks
to Mozart's two -hundredth year all these
early quartets are being restored to repertory.
There are now four versions of K. 155 and
three of each of the others, and it is impossible to compare conclusively the various
records, with three or four works apiece, not
usually the identical three or four. In the
present case the New Music Quartet as
exhibited in the sonics have a pleasanter
tonal glow than their rivals. They are
habitually brisk, and the least aimless of all
string quartets now recording. There is a
feeling of no nonsense here, where it is entirely successful, without any apparent neglect of the deeper values
and there are
a number
in this mature and captivating
music by a great composer aged sixteen.
down the list of New York successes, one
might come to have a vague impression
that Millöcker was living somewhere on
the south slope of Murray Hill, working
like a beaver to keep the theaters supplied
with such shows as Poor Jonathan and The
Beggar Student. As a matter of fact, though,
they were imported from the homeland of
operetta, where the composer died in r899
-
-
C. G. B.
MOZART
Quartets: No. 20, in D, K. 499; No. 21,
in D, K. 575; No. 22, in B-flat, K. 589;
No. 23, in F, K. 590
Budapest Quartet.
COLUMBIA SL 228.
Marosszék
Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra of London, Artur Rodzinski, cond.
after a relatively short life but a hugely
productive career. And now, when The
Beggar Student has been forgotten on
Broadway in favor of The Pajama Game,
the LP revival of interest in operetta has
brought a recording of it from Vienna,
where it has deeper roots as a Volksoper
staple.
Not really especially like Strauss in
flavor, it has a score in the Singspiel -Lortzing -Suppé line of descent to give rhythm
and excellent tunes to a marvelously entangled Ruritania -type story of scrambled
identities and true love between the poor
but charming and the lovely and noble.
The performance is sung with splendid
style by a Volksoper-Staatsoper cast; it takes
in only the musical numbers and has
bounce and spirit and, often, real lyric
beauty under Anton Paulik. Text and
notes and synopsis are provided. J. H., JR.
Two
12 -in.
$7.96.
These are Mozart's last four quartets, and
with them the Budapest complete the recording of the giant backbone of the quartet
repertory. Already in the Columbia catalogue are the seventeen quartets of Beethoven, the six of Haydn's Op. 76, Schubert's
last three, the six that Mozart dedicated to
Haydn, and the three by Brahms. These
were all issued in sets of two or more records
and have all been reviewed here. The latest
increment presents a unanimity of superiority over the united competition unprecedented in the experience of the reviewer.
Furthermore, it is the first collection of four
major works of any kind, by one group of
musicians, so to excel in that experience.
Whether the reassumption by Alexander
Schneider of the second violin has been of
first instrumentality in effecting this distinction, one would prudently hesitate to say.
Continued on page 78
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
GEORGE SZELL conducts
THE CLEVELAND ORCHESTRA... now
exclusively on EPIC RECORDS!
The Cleveland Orchestra
has come into being and developed into
one of the finest orchestras in the world.
For the past 10 years this development has
been under the baton of the celebrated
George Szell who conducts these first Radial Sound recordings for Epic.
In just
38 years
BEETHOVEN: Symphony No. 5 in C Minor; scisuBERT: Symphony No. 8 in B Minor ("Unfinished ").
Hear both these popular symphonies recorded in
Epic's unique Radial Sound. LC 3195
HAYDN: Symphony No. 88 in G Major ("Paris ");
Symphony No. 104 in D Major ("London"). Precision playing by the fabulous Cleveland strings,
enhanced by Radial Sound. LC 3196
Each 12 " long playing record in deluxe album with illustrated brochure $3.98
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flPRIL 1956
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This musician has had a vast experience in
recording, and the Haydn quartets played
by the organization bearing his name, recorded by the Haydn Society with Columbia's facilities, were usually more vital in
sonics than the contemporaneous Budapest
disks. The two newest records are a sonic
leap upward, not only well above the previous Budapest standard but level with the best
chamber -music sound; and in addition the
tone provided by the players themselves is
definitely mellower and consistently more
attractive than any of the other records of
this group. Perhaps the improvements are
mainly the result of changes in the acoustical environment.
No room here to point out all the beauties
of the playing. Needless to say the Budapest forte of supplying delicacy without
concessions of force or meaning, and the
Budapest inclusion of every aside, every
item of punctuation, in natural proportion,
are in full evidence, while in the intra -adjustments of strength and balance there
seems to be no distention anywhere.
There is humor in the finales, and these
players sport with it and make it indelible,
not by emphasis, but by clarity (No. 21'5
to be particularly noted). The slow movements are invariably profoundly expressed
in Budapest interpretations, no exception
here; and to curtail what begins to degenerate into a panegyric, here is an admission
that No. 23 seems unlikely ever to be played
with more understanding and poise. C.G.B.
MOZART
Songs
Ridente la calma, K. 152; Oiseaux, si tous les
ans, K. 3o7; Dans un bois solitaire, K. 398;
Die kleine Spinnerin, K. 531; Als Luise die
Briefe ihres ungetreuen Liebhabers verbrannte,
K. 52o; Abendempfindung, K. 532; Des
Kinderspiel, K. 598; Die Alte, K. 517; Das
Traumbild, K. 53o; Das Veilchen, K. 476;
Der Zauberer, K. 472; Im Frühlingsanfange,
K. 597; Das Lied der Trennung, K. 519; Die
Zufriedenheit, K. 349; An Chloe, K. 524;
Sehnsucht nach dem Frühlinge, K. 596.
Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, soprano; Walter
Gieseking, piano.
ANGEL 35270. 12 -in. $4.98 (or $3.48).
In my student days we were taught that the
art song was born of a marriage of Goethe's
poetry and Mozart's music in the famous
little song Das Veilchen, but that since this
was the only setting Mozart made of Germany's greatest poet, he failed to produce
another lied of comparable importance.
Henry T. Finck, in his Songs and Song- lVriterr
(190o), could say: "In looking through the
collection I found only five that I would
care to hear again: the cradle song Schlaft
mein Prinzchen, Sei du mein Trost, Das Lied
der Trennung, Das Veilchen, and Ich würd' auf
meinem Pfad; and of these only Das Veilchen
ranks with the songs that live apart from the
fame of their makers." (Obviously the noted
critic had not discovered that the cradle
song, charming as it is, is spurious).
William Mann, who provides the introductory notes for this recital, reminds us
that "it is always time to reassess inherited
The Latest Magic Flute Is First In More Ways Than One
IN A SENSE this is
the first complete recording of The Magic Flute,
since it is the first to include the spoken dialogue. Some non Germans may not consider this addition an advantage, but actually
it makes the difference between a genuine opera performance and
a concert version. Without it the numbers follow abruptly one
upon another, and we never get a chance to catch our breath.
For myself, I am glad to listen to the original German dialogue
again, for perhaps the time has come for a reconsideration of its
merits. Schikaneder's libretto has had more than its share of critical
abuse, though on the other hand its champions included no less a
personage than Goethe. Beethoven, it will be recalled, pronounced
Die Zauberflöte the greatest of Mozart's operas, largely because of
the libretto; his strait -laced moral standards would not allow him
to enjoy operas on such subjects as Don Juan and Figaro. I think
many commentators have condemned Schikaneder's libretto because of frustration in their efforts to root out its hidden significance.
The one thing plain is its approval of the tenets of Freemasonry,
the ideals of the brotherhood of man. We know that the text is
full of topical references whose meaning died with the first audiences.
performance. Fricsay's love for the score is everywhere apparent.
and the lightness of his touch is rivaled on records only in the
old Beecham version. Some of his tempos are on the fast side
"Bei Männern," for example, and "Ach, ich fühl's," though I am by
no means opposed to performing these passages this way.
Maria Stader sings the music of Pamina with calm security, yet
she is not cold. She achieves real pathos, especially in "Ach, ich
fuhl's," simply by her limpid, silvery tone, her unfailing musicianship, her eloquent phrasing. This is an old- fashioned ideal in singing, perhaps, but a good one. Irmgard Seefried, in the Columbia
set, sings more inwardly, but no more movingly; Hilde Gueden, in
the London recording, sounds shrill and not very comfortable.
Ernst Häfliger's voice is strong and manly, not so heavy as Roswänge in the Victor, less fussy than Dermota on Columbia, more
genuinely German than Simoneau on London. Rita Streich, who
made such an impression in the Strauss Ariadne, is possibly the most
proficient coloratura singer practicing today, certainly the most
accomplished of our rival Queens. Wilma Lipp, in the Columbia
and London sets, is more dramatic, but her runs are less impressively accurate.
The surprise of the set is Dietrich Fischer -Dieskau, whose Papa geno gives the lie to those who have asserted (sometimes in print)
that he has no humor in him. He belongs to the Rehkemper school.
lightening his voice and giving the text its full due. Less pungent
(less rich- toned) then Gerhard Hüsch, he is more imaginative; after
him Erich Kunz (Columbia) seems inordinately heavy, Walter
Berry (London) a little dull. Josef Greindl, like most Sarastros, is
disappointing, simply because he cannot match in his singing the
sheer sublimity of his music. The three Ladies are good, but would
be better were the voice of the first of them more concentrated:
the Spirits merit no such criticism.
All in all, this seems to me the best Magic Flute in the catalogue,
and an outstandingly good one by any standard. The reproduction
is clear and bright throughout, though something goes amiss at
the end of the first allegro in the Overture.
-
PHILIP L. MILLER
Fricsay and soloists: among other assets, the spoken dialogue.
-
Some of the less obscure problems have been unraveled
for
instance, the identification of the Queen of the Night with the
Empress Maria Theresa. But so far did Mozart rise above all this
that such analysis is of little value. Stripped of subtle meanings,
the play may be taken as pure fantasy. In any case it is splendid
theater; and listening to this new recording, I feel that its very
naiveté adds poignancy to the music. It seems to me that of all
Mozart's operas this comes most directly from his heart. It may
not be his greatest musical drama, but it certainly is the one that
strikes nearest the tear ducts.
The first allegro tells us that this will be a bright and exuberant
MOZART: Die Zauberflöte
Maria Stader (s), Pamina; Rita Streich (s), Queen of the Night,
Marianne Schech (s), First Lady; Liselotte Losch (s), Second Lady:
Margarete Klose (c), Third Lady; Margot Guilleaume (s), First
Spirit; Maria Reith (s), Second Spirit; Diana Eustrati (ms), Third
Spirit; Lisa Otto (s), An Old Woman (later Papagena); Ernst Häfliger
(t), Tamino; Martin Vantin (t), Monostatos; Dietrich Fischer Dieskau (b), Papageno; Josef Greindl (bs), Sarastro; Kim Borg
(bs), Speaker; and others; various actors for the spoken dialogue;
RIAS Chamber Choir and Berlin Motet Choir; RIAS Symphony
Orchestra, Ferenc Fricsay, cond.
DECCA DX 134. Three 12 -in. $13.98.
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
78
www.americanradiohistory.com
values," and he hails the opportunity offered
by this collection of sixteen of Mozart's
forty -one lieder. This reappraisal will be
by no means agonizing
even though this
particular recital is not quite the revelation
that Mann's notes might lead you to believe
it to be. Granted that Schwarzkopf and
Gieseking have given us the most generous
helping of the songs on records, they are
not the first in the field. Not counting the
occasional single songs, we have had a set
of five by Erna Berger (RCA Victor LM 133),
four by Suzanne Danco (London LS 699),
six by Genevieve Warner (Columbia ML
4365), and four by Earl Rogers (Allegro
-
AL
13).
To undervalue Mozart's songs because
they are not by Schubert is like taking Schubert himself to task for lacking the uncanny
psychological insight of Hugo Wolf. True,
a goodly number of these miniatures are
strophic in form and occupy only single
pages in the printed collection; but Schubert himself wrote many such songs
indeed they are as typical of one side of him
as Erlkönig is of the other. Surely, the man
who could give us the superb AbendempJindung, the touching Das Lied der Trennung, the charming An Chloe, and the little
szena drammatica in which Luisa destroys her
love letters, was by no means a one -song
composer. Not only in their inimitable
Mozartean melodies, but in their pianistic
details, these songs are full of felicities.
It was a safe assumption that Elisabeth
Schwarzkopf would sing her program in
caressing tones and with ever dependable
musicianship. If one must point to a shortcoming in her, it would be her very predictableness. She never surprises us with a flash
of humor as Elisabeth Schumann used to do,
nor does she thrill us with unexpected turns
of phrases. While Danco and Berger let
their voices soar in their Mozart recitals,
Schwarzkopf takes very seriously the word
"intimate" so often used to describe the
art of lieder singing. Only occasionally
does she alter her tone for dramatic effect
most notably in Die Alte, which Mozart
has directed to be sung through the nose.
As for Gieseking, he has not been content
to provide a background, but collaborates
in a manner worthy of his reputation.
-
-
P. L. M.
MOZART
Le Nozze
di Figaro (excerpts)
Vocal soloists; Hamburg Philharmonia Or-
chestra, Hans Jurgen -Walther, cond.
ALLEGRO- ROYALE 1636. i2 -in. $1.89.
Poison ivy for Mozart on his two -hundredth
birthday. Singers and orchestra, separated
by an ocean, travel parallel but not congruent
lines. The results are occasionally appalling.
Some of the singing, notably that of Miss
Barbara Troxell, is excellent; but the disk
has expert qualifications for limbo which
such talent only serves to confuse. It ought
to be left to realize its destiny.
C. G. B.
MUSSORGSKY
Pictures at an Exhibition (orch. Ravel)
Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra of London, Artur Rodzinski, cond.
WESTMINSTER W -LAB 7019.
12
-in. $7.50.
An extremely efficient performance, mag-
nificently recorded.
APRIL L956
James Lyons' notes
make flattering references to the present reviewer's research on this work; but, rather
maddeningly, they say nothing about their
purpose and point. The whole idea was to
discover the pictures that hung in the exhibition and bring them to the attention of
people who know and like Mussorgsky's
music. They can be found in the Musical
Quarterly for July 1939.
A. F.
Here's your guide to:
MORE LISTENING
'..
-
here's a wealth of practical, useful information on how to select the type of records
you like best, and how to obtain greater
enjoyment from them. Seventeen musical
specialists help enrich your understanding
and deepen your appreciation of music by
explaining the different types of music and
recommending the best recordings in each
category.
Antigone
tGeiser: Symphony in D minor
Elsa Cavelti, contralto; Orchestre de la
Suisse Romande, Ernest Ansermet, cond.
LONDON LL 1265. 12 -in. $3.98.
Robert Oboussier's Antigone is a symphonic
song cycle in three movements employing
some of the more oracular portions of the
play by Sophocles as translated into German.
It has a lush, post -Wagnerian ring not unlike that of the early Schoenberg. There
may be more to it, but the singer's mournful,
wobbly wail does not encourage closer
acquaintance. Walter Geiser, we are told
in the notes, is a "devotee of the New
Classicism." This translated means that he
has no marked style of his own but uses a
tuneful, clear, largely diatonic idiom. He
makes the heroic gesture, the meek gesture,
and the joyful gesture quite plausibly. The
recordings are nothing extra special. A. F.
JUST
Your
Record
Edited by
Roy H.
Hoopes, Jr.
Concerto
Nowadays when you walk into a music
store and are confronted by a bewildering
array of different versions of the same
title, you need skilled advice to select the
one you'll enjoy most. In this book, ex-
PROKOFIEV
perts in each kind of music not only advise
you on your best recording buys, but they
also show you how to plan and sensibly
build a well -rounded record collection,
custom -tailored to your
individual taste.
These 17
help
Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra of London, Artur Rodzinski, cond.
I2 -in.
$7.50.
Whether you prefer
chamber music, jazz,
symphonies, opera or
ballet music, you are
It is unfortunate that this disk appeared
just too late to be included in the Prokofiev
discography published in these pages last
Rodzinski's performance of the
Classical Symphony is especially good, and
the recording is one of the subtlest, particularly from the dynamic point of view, that
I have ever heard; its contrasts of loud and
soft are so skillfully managed as to produce
almost a stereophonic effect. But the orchestra comes to grief where so many do
in the performance of this work: the first
violins simply do not play in tune, and the
exceptionally high fidelity of the recording
brings out that fact mercilessly. The recording of the suite from The Love for Three
Oranges is magnificent, but the performance
is not outstanding.
A. F.
2,
inant feature of this recording. Mr. Frugoni
plays the concerto with enormous technical
brilliance and a rather hard, feverish style,
while Mr. Byrns is sometimes hard put to
Paul Affelder
Roy Allison
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RACHMANINOFF
Orazio Frugoni, piano; Pro Musica Orchestra (Vienna), Harold Byrns, cond.
Vox PL 965o. 12 -in. $4.98.
experts
you build a well -bal-
given a handy list of Nathan Broder
G. Burke
finest selections avail- C.
John Conly
able, together with de- Raymond Ericson
Gelatt
tailed comments and Roland
Fred Grunfeld
analyses of each choice.
James Hinton, Jr.
Each selection is made Roy H. Hoopes, Jr.
F. Indcoa
on the basis of hi -fi John
Kotlowitz
quality of recording, Robert
Rosalyn Krokover
musical
prequality of
Howard Lafay
Lieson Miller
sentation and appro- Phillip
Harold C. Schonberg
priateness in the over- John S. Wilson
all record library.
A few of the categories covered are pre -Bach, Piano Music,
Choral Music, Haydn, Mozart, Concertos,
Beethoven, Broadway Musicals, Schubert,
and many more. You even
Folk Music
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month.
Concerto for Piano and Orchestra, No.
nr C minor
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini
Library
$3.95
Symphony No. r, in D ( "Classical "), Op. 25
The Love for Three Oranges: Orchestral
Suite, Op. 33a
WESTMINSTER W -LAB 7017.
OUT!
Building
PAGANINI
Concerto for Violin and Orchestra, No. r,
in D, Op. 6 -See Sibelius:
..
Whether you're a musical connoisseur, hi -fi
expert or just plain enjoy good music
OBOUSSIER
for Violin and Orchestra.
ENJOYMENT
-
HIGH FIDELITY Magazine
The Publishing House, Gt. Barrington, Mass.
Please send me a copy of BUILDING YOUR
RECORD LIBRARY.
$3.95 enclosed.
NAME
ADDRESS
79
I
mirable, and the first scene between him
and Rigoletto, sung in an eerie sotto voce,
is the best I have ever heard. Serafin must
also be given credit here, for he makes his
characters really sound as though they were
conspiring in the shadows. A lovely voiced
newcomer is Adriana Lazzarini as Maddalena. This unknown singer commands attention in a role that can be made quite
commonplace. In Plinio Clabassi we have,
at last, a Monterone worthy of his dramatic
position in the opera; he is very effective.
Other roles are carefully outlined to bring
drama and cohesion to the whole.
While there are excellent elements in the
RCA Victor, London, and Cetra sets, they
appear a little pale beside this recording,
which has managed to return Rigoletto to
us as the great dramatic experience it should
MAX DE SCHAUENSEE
be.
VERDI
La Traviata
Anna Rozsa (s), Violetta; Alessandro
Ziliani (t), Alfredo; Luigi Borgonovo (b),
Germont; Olga de Franco (s), Flora,
Annina; Giordano Callegari (t), Gastone;
Antonio Gelli (bs), Doctor Grenvil, the
Marquis; Arnoldo Lenzi (bs), Baron Duphol.
Chorus and Orchestra of La Scala (Milan),
Carlo Sabajno, cond.
Two 1z -in.
RCA CAMDEN CAL 287/88.
$3.96.
With this reissue of the HMV -Victor early
electrical complete Traviata, Camden is be-
ginning a program of digging into its operatic files of the past. This is good news for
those whose pocketbooks are slender and
for others who harbor sentiment for already
historical recordings. The present set was
issued in Milan (where it was made) on
March 15, 1931. Therefore. it is natural to
assume that it was recorded sometime during 193o.
This twenty- six -year -old performance by
the forces of La Scala is a pretty good one.
Camden has done wonders with the sound.
Once the ear becomes adjusted, you will
find the recording quite acceptable. Anna
Rozsa, a soprano who recorded little else,
is a clear -voiced and at times exciting
Violetta. Finesse, however, is not one of
her strong points. Luigi Borgonovo has
just the right vocal color for Germont and
sings beautifully, far better than many of
the hi -fi Germonts of today's sets. Alessandro Ziliani performs with ease as Alfredo,
but he is totally undistinguished. He made
better records later. The supporting cast
is adequate under Carlo Sabajno, Italian
HMV's house- conductor from the early
years of the century, who always keeps
things moving
sometimes too briskly.
Excellent surfaces; a fine buy for so modest
a price.
Let us hope that Camden will now release the thrilling Carmen Melis -Granforte
Tosca; the Pertile-Giannini Aida; the yet -tobe- surpassed Don Pasquale with Schipa and
grand old Ernesto Badini; and the Faust,
which contains the unrivaled Mephisto of
-
Marcel Journet. Opera enthusiasts would
welcome the reappearance of these sets.
MAX DE SCHAUENSEE
VERDI
Otello (excerpts)
Mariquita Moll (s), Desdemona; Albert da
Costa (t), Otello; Frank Valentino (b), Iago.
Orchestra, Hans Juergens Walther, cond.
ALLEGRO -ROYALE 1629.
12 -in.
$1.89.
The performance bits to be heard here do
the opera scanty justice, and sometimes falsify it; the recording is likely to please
no one who has heard even average -good
modern disks; but any Otello at all for less
than two dollars may be worth the price.
By far the best artist of the three is Frank
Valentino, whose voice is narrow, tight, and
unbrilliant, but who guides what voice he
has with sound dramatic intelligence. As
Desdemona, Mariquita Moll sings capably,
if generally without more than tentative
insight. The best voice, as a voice, is that
of Albert da Costa, a young American who
is being groomed by the Metropolitan for
including drastic weight -regreat things
duction and a full -dress opportunity to
prove himself in the heroic repertoire. At
this point, however, the sound is less that
of a Heldentenor than of what might be
called a big lyric tenor were there more
freedom and at least a little caress to the
tone. His interpretation is that of a learner.
The voices are decently reproduced, but
-
The Living Glory of Enrico Caruso's Voice
THE ENVELOPING SPLENDOR of
Enrico Caruso's voice, as it came from
the stage, was an indescribable sensation.
I can hear the impact of those tones, so
vibrant with emotion, as though it were
yesterday. I first heard Caruso in La Bohème
at Philadelphia, on December 23, 19,3.
The capacity audience was in a holiday
mood, responding to the glory of "Che
gelida manina" with its soaring high Bnatural, and I recall vividly that during the
intermission the great tenor, radiating geniality, stepped to the footlights and called
out "Merree Creesmas!" It was on that
same night that Caruso sang the bass aria
"Vecchia zimarra" for his ailing colleague
De Segurola.
I met Caruso backstage during a 1917
performance of Pagliacci. He had sung the
,, Vesti la giubba" with such heart -rending
emotion, with such a surge of glorious tone,
that John McCormack, sitting in the row
behind me, got up and cheered. In the
scuffle with Beppe, just before the arioso,
Caruso had suffered a scratch near his eye.
He was feeling very sorry for himself when
I was introduced to him, though he tried
to smile kindly through near -tears. The
baritone, Pasquale Amato, was doing his
best to reassure him. Very brave and self reliant when it came to life's great crises,
Caruso was also a childlike victim of any
small contretemps.
Caruso always made me feel sorry for the
colleagues who appeared with him on the
stage. It was like seeing a heroic statue
placed among statues of merely ordinary
There was an extra dimension, a
size.
84
access to high D); tenors who boasted
long- drawn -out pianissimi, which the peerless Enrico did not possess. Then what
was it that made Caruso, as far as we know,
the greatest tenor of all time?
Quality. The voice was simply ravishing
in its beauty of sound; no other could
match it. It had a golden ring in heroic
passages; it had a velvety enchantment in
its softer utterances. Beyond the beauty,
the passionate temperament so filled with
the drama of humanity, the heart which
seemed to understand the dreams and aspirations of all men, was a charm which captithe sun dancing on the
vated the listener
Mediterranean was in Caruso's voice.
The present generation is apt to look
bored when an earlier era of singers is discussed. However, there is one exception to
this, and that exception is Enrico Caruso.
Caruso seems to live on in an enduring
after -death existence; his fabulous voice
and art still hold a place in contemporary
conversation.
Fully conscious of this fact, RCA Victor
is now issuing forty -six selections by the
brightest star of its considerable history.
This arresting white album, stamped with a
colored reproduction of the divo in his
celebrated role of Canio, is designed as a
souvenir for those who cannot forget
Caruso, and as an introduction for those
who had the supreme misfortune never to
have heard him in life. George R. Marek, a
man who responds emotionally to the CarusoPuccini era, was in back of this project,
and Francis Robinson supplied nostalgic
notes and photographs to accompany six
-
BETTMANN ARCHIVE
Caruso in 1917, pictured with C. G.
Child, Victor Recording Director.
"something" others didn't have about
Caruso's voice. It belonged in another class;
and yet he was surrounded by such supreme
singers as Destinn, Homer, Matzenauer,
stars of the first
Amato, and Mardones
magnitude.
not many
There have been tenors
with bigger voices (Tamagno, I am told,
was one of these); tenors with higher voices
-
-
-
(Bonci, Lazaro, and Lauri -Volpi had easy
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
there are difficulties, pitch -wise and otherwise, with the Hamburg- dubbed orchestra.
J. H., Jr.
WEILL
Berlin Theater Songs
Die Dreigroschenoper: Moritat; Barbara -Song;
SeeräuberJenny. Aufstieg and Fall der Stadt
Mahagonny: Havanna- Lied; Alabama -Song;
Wie man sich bettet. Happy End: Bilbao -Song;
Surabaya Johnny; Matrosen- Tango.
Das
Berliner Requiem: Vom ertrunkenen Mädchen.
Der Silbersee: Lied der Fennimore; Cäsars Tod.
Lotte Lenya, soprano.
Bean, cond.
COLUMBIA ML 5056.
Orchestra, Roger
12 -in.
$5.98.
For a very special complex of reasons, this
collection, taped in Germany last summer,
holds status as what might be called a
certified -in- advance classic of recorded musical theater. It is timely, to be sure, since the
reputations of the late Kurt Weill and of
Lotte Lenya, his wife and most telling interpreter, have never been higher on this
side of the Atlantic. It is of historic importance, on several counts. But the really
defining thing about it is the fact that it
makes accessible some of the most alive,
most immediate theater to be experienced
simply through listening to records.
As to what part of the total effect is creditable to the music as music, what to the
words, what to the singer, it is impossible
to say; all are inseparably bound up together, and there is no chance of applying
LP sides upon which engineers and tech-
nicians lavished hours of work. Obviously,
such a project is a labor of love.
After duly acknowledging a lofty ideal,
one finds that the inevitable coming to
grips with an appraisal of the general impression made by these records has its
difficult moments.
The initial disappointment lies in the
realization that there is a serious loss of
power and impact in several of these transferences to tape and thence to LP. Despite
claims for the benefits derived from "new
electronic facilities," some of the records
sound as though technicians had been too
smart for their own good. This album is
far from a convincing proof that drastic
elimination of all surface noise, insistence
on the use of an "echo chamber," and the
yet experimental manipulation of knobs and
controls is the most effective way to reproduce originals of the acoustical era.
Obviously, the laudable desire is to bring
the voice forward and to give the record a
more realistic sound from today's standpoint.
This has been accomplished; but in doing
so, there are several instances where quality
has suffered. There is some blasting on
open notes, occasional fuzziness, loss of
sheer impact in climaxes. During certain
records, the engineers sound as though they
had cut down on the "juice" at the approach
of an engulfing Caruso climax.
Another cause for regret is the grouping
of selections according to the composer or
type of music. Any sequence of dates is
ignored. Thus, the dark Caruso tone of
1918 and 1920 is sometimes followed by
the lyric tenor of earlier years. Claims are
made that by thus assembling the Verdis,
the Puccinis, the French arias, the songs,
better listening is ensured. I doubt this.
conventional work -over -performance criteria. After all, Weill is supposed to have
said, "My melodies always come to my
inner ear in Lenya's voice." What surer
authority
and, considering the quality of
the music Weill was capable of writing, what
greater creative share
could a performer
-
-
bear?
Miss Lenya is so closely identified with
this music that her way of singing it is, for
all reasonable purposes, the music itself.
It is perhaps just as well that she never took
vocal lessons; she might have lost the extremely individual quality of her light, thin,
indescribably haunting voice, and without
gaining anything very consequential to
make up the difference. As for her lack of
any musical training at all, there is small
evidence that she needed any. Her sense
of rhythm and phrase is micrometer precise
and delicate in adjustments to textual and
musical nuances. And, with all this, her
diction is flawless
the marvelously clear,
plastic sort of projection that never leaves
so much as a half -syllable in doubt. The
voice itself has grown a couple of shades
darker, a degree less childlike in clarity
than it is in the great old original -cast
Dreigroschenoper excerpts, but that is all the
change worked by time. Whether she is a
great artist or a great natural genius, or
both, the singing is great, and that is what
matters.
Of the Dreigroschen numbers, "SeerauberJenny" is the most familiar of all Lenya
properties, and if her singing of it here misses
-
An uninterrupted string of Puccini arias or
Italian love songs can prove wearisome.
After all, it is the singer, his development
and changing characteristics over a span of
eighteen years, that interests in such a collection; not the composer or the genre of
music.
I regret that the 1908 Rigoletto Quartet
with Sembrich and Scotti (an excellent record) was bypassed in favor of the 1917
version.
The earlier one is historically
valuable because it preserves the principal
associates of Caruso in his North American
debut; the youthful Caruso teamed with the
retiring Sembrich, who had sung with such
tenors as Masini, Stagno, Campanini, and
Gayarré has its provocative angle. Likewise I would have preferred the 1912 Lucia
Sextet with Tetrazzini, for Caruso was here
in more brilliant voice than in the 1917
recording with Galli- Curci. Besides, the
1917 versions have already been transferred
to earlier LP disks.
Among the most successful transfers in
this album are the two brief arias from
Rigoletto (1908). Both are splendid. So is
the duet "Ai nostri monti'' from Trovatore,
with Louise Homer. These will give you
an accurate idea of the tenor's singing, five
seasons after his New York debut. He was
then at his very peak. Outstanding are
Caruso's slightly earlier Martha and Africana
arias. Incidentally, the Martha is not the 1917
version, as listed in the album's table of
contents, but the far finer 1906 disk. It is
a pleasure indeed that the superb trio from
I Lombardi with Alda and Journet (one of
the great Caruso recordings) and the Good Night Quartet from Martha, in which Caruso's voice is utterly enchanting, have been
revived. They are among the most successful
transfers. Handel's Largo is another cause
APRIL X956
the false- naïve, insouciant flipness that made
the oldest version so chilling, it has everything else. The "Barbara- Song" is very fine,
and the "Moritat" is too, though it is hard to
banish the thought that this ought really be
reserved for the weediest discoverable male
voice, one thing Miss Lenya's voice is not.
All three Mahagonny bits, not otherwise to be
heard on records here, are absolutely first class Weill- Brecht
the finely satirical
bonga -bonga accompanied "Havanna- Lied,"
introduced by what is surely the most remarkable bordello conversation on records;
the "Alabama- Song," with its text in Brecht's
record -derived tissue of American popular song clichés and its music to match; and
"Wie man sich bettet," a savagely protesting
song and one of Weill's greatest. Those
from Happy End keep almost to the same
high level of transmutation from ordinary
materials. My own favorite would have to
be the "Bilboa- Song" (" . Joe, macht die
Musik von damals each ... "), but only at the
expense of arousing partisans of "Surabaya
Johnny."
In "Vom ertrunkener Mädchen," a more
sober and disquietingly beautiful tone is
struck; this is not show music, even superficially, but a long -lined, hopeless dirge,
superbly shaped by any standards. The excerpts from Der Silbersee are also earnest and
concentrated in both text and music. The
"Lied der Fennimore," about the horrors of
being passed about as a poor relation, is
desolating in Miss Lenya's singing of it;
and as for "Cäsars Tod," anyone who wants
-
.
.
-a
for rejoicing
splendid example of the
mature Caruso, whose voice sounds as
though it were actually in the room.
Among the selections that have not
responded any too well to these latest techniques are the Traviata Brindisi with Alma
Gluck; the great Otello scene with Titta
Ruffo, which here lacks clarity and impact;
the Lucia Sextet (muddy); Irving Berlin's
Over There (a nostalgic momento); the aria
from Macbeth; Sei morta nella vita mia;
Vaghissima Sembianza; and Rossini's Crucifixus (Caruso's last record).
Of historic interest are two of Caruso's
5902 Milan recordings Luna Fedel and the aria
"Amor ti vieta" from Fedora, which Caruso
created for Giordano in 1898. Also present
is one of the tenor's first New York records
for Victor
"Una furtiva lagrima." All
these early mementos are acceptably reproduced. Very much on the credit side is the
fact that every number in this album has
been recorded squarely on pitch, and that
includes the two half- tone-down transpositions the tenor made in Rodolfo's Narrative from Bohème and "Di quella pira"
from Trovatore. Of the present forty -six
selections, twenty -three are transferred to
modern speed for the first time.
Drawbacks notwithstanding, here is the
living glory of Caruso's voice to charm the
ear, once more, of those who heard him,
and to make it possible for a younger generation to sample the voice and art of one of
the operatic giants of all time.
:
-
MAX DE SCHAUENSEB
ENRICO CARUSO: An Anthology of His
Art on Records
Enrico Caruso, tenor.
RCA VICTOR LM 6127. Three
12 -in.
$19.98.
85
www.americanradiohistory.com
RECORDS
to know just why Weill had to leave Hitler's
Germany can find out here.
All told, this is a really great theater recording, one that ought not to be missed.
Elaborately and tastefully gotten out, with
Saul Bolasni's fine Lenya portrait on the
jacket, it is accompanied by six pages of
notes and photographs. Full texts in both
German and English (good English, what's
more) are bound in. Very highly recomJ. H., Jr.
mended.
RECITALS AND
MISCELLANY
BORIS CHRISTOFF
Russian Songs
Shrove Tuesday. Potorjinski (arr.):
of the Lumberjacks; The Bandore.
Labinski -Tchernoyarov (arr.): Down Piterskaya Street. Alexandrov (arr.): Going Down
The Lonely
the Volga. Potorjinski (arr.):
Autumn Night. Znamenny Chant: Psalm
137 -By the Waters of Babylon. Strokine:
Prayer of St. Simeon. Tchesnokov: Lord
Potorjinski
Have Mercy on Our People.
The Song of the Twelve Robbers.
(arr.):
Gretchaninov: Litany.
Boris Christoff, bass; The Potorjinski Choir.
RCA VICTOR LM 1945. 12 -in. $3.98.
Serov:
Song
-
Caralleria Rusticana: Ah, it Signore ri manda
Emmy Destinn (s), Dinh Gilly (b).
Dinorah:
Meyerbeer:
Ombra leggiera
Maria Galvany (s).
FS 889.
to-in. $3.50 (By
mail from Voicewriter Division, Thomas A.
Edison, Inc., West Orange, N. J.).
EDISON ORIGINALS
This limited -issue LP transcription of previously unreleased hill -and -dale vocal records
cut in 1910-1911 was gotten out in commemoration of the seventy -eighth anniversary of Thomas A. Edison's original patent
on the phonograph; and also, to be realistic
about it, as a promotional gimmick to get
some attention for the Edison (Modern
Edison, that is) Voicewriter, which takes
dictation through a microphone. On its
merits, it is a fascinating recording to have
around, one that no enthusiast of good
singing is likely to want to ignore. But it
is even more fascinating, and tantalizing,
in its implications of what might have been.
In fact, this little disk can be regarded as a
kind of memorial to the loss of treasures
that were never very firmly grasped.
A practical man and a hard -working one,
Edison tended, first and last, to think of
his phonograph not as a medium for bringing art and entertainment into the home,
but as a dictation machine for offices, "the
Of the several bassos active today whose
work shows a deep and devoted study of
the art and methods of the late Feodor
Chaliapin, Boris Christoff is the one most
nearly approaching the model. His voice
has an uncanny likeness at times to that of
his great prototype, though it is not so big
a voice, nor is his style quite so broad in
its outlines. Actually this is another way
of saying that his art is less bold and improvisatory. One never knew what Chaliapin was going to do, and the many records
he made over a period of years demonstrate
how much he could vary his delivery of the
same music on different occasions.
Christoff has chosen his program almost
entirely from the Chaliapin repertory.
Though his choral arrangements are new,
they are very much in the old tradition.
Some of the titles may not be recognized
at once, but there are only three of them
that I do not know from Chaliapin records.
Shrove Tuesday used to be known as Merry
Butterweek: it is a scene from Serov's opera
The Power of Evil (or The Hostile Power).
Song of the Lumberjack is otherwise Dubinushka; The Lonely Autumn Night used to be
called simply Night: The Prayer of St. Simeon
(actually the None Dimittis) has been variously labeled We Will Now Depart and
You Are Now Free. Naturally all these songs
and pieces of church music benefit greatly
from the modern reproduction; and Chris toff's singing, while derivative, is individual
P. L. M.
too.
EDISON ORIGINALS
Opera Excerpts (19 t o- t 91 t )
Carmen
Aida: Ritorna vincitor
Verdi:
Melis (s). Puccini: Tosca: Vissi d'arte
Marie Rappold (s). Meyerbeer: Les HugueLucette Korsoff (s).
0 lieto suol
nots:
Verdi: La Forza del Destino: Pace, pace
Mascagni:
Celestina Boninsegna (s).
-
-
BETTMANN ARCHIVE
Emmy Destinn
ideal amanuensis," as his happy phrase put
it. And he thought this way so persistently
and for so long that in the end he had his
way. Not until 1906 did he decide that the
Edison phonograph could be trusted to reproduce "the voices of great artists
with all their characteristic sweetness, power,
and purity of tone." By then it was a bit
late in the day, for wax cylinders were already becoming less and less popular in
the face of competition from the handier
flat shellac- surfaced disks; and, besides,
most people who were interested primarily
in good music were already equipped with
disk -type machines. They had had precious
little encouragement from Edison. At last,
in 1913, he put his own hill -and -dale disk
machine on the market; and until 1925,
things looked up a bit. Then came such
.
.
.
developments as radio and the microphone,
and in 1929 the Edison company went out
of the record business altogether to concentrate on the inventor's old preoccupation
dictating machines.
At that time, the company's backlog of
unissued recordings went into storage.
Among them were some early, experimental
twelve -inch disks made during the build -up
-
period before the shift from cylinders.
These are the lot from which Roland Gelatt
has selected the six to be heard in this anniversary issue, which is the first music on a
record to be issued by the Edison company
in twenty -six years.
Since things have worked out fairly well
for music on records generally, there would
be little reason to mourn the metamorphosis
of phonograph- into -Voicewriter save for
one thing: as a recorder of fine singing,
Edison's hill -and -dale equipment did a
notably better job than did lateral -cut machines of the same period. And, whatever
would have been the outcome of hill -anddale vs. lateral -cut techniques by now, it is
hard to listen to acoustical reproduction as
good as that accomplished in these 19101911 examples without reflecting wistfully
on what Edison might have preserved on
wax if he had stirred himself to work on the
phonograph concentratedly in 1878 instead
of taking his time.
These transfers from hill -and -dale are
certainly more convincing representations
of human voices than any (well, save possibly very exceptional individual cases)
lateral -cut acousticals of the same period.
They have more of what is called, for lack
of a more precise term, presence. It is not
that the voices as voices sound better; it
is that in listening to them one gets a sense
of being surer what they were actually like,
because the data are more complete. There
is a superior sense of vocal dimensions,
vocal colors, more immediacy of impact,
Given a chance, the
more perspective.
mind's ear can adjust to almost any recording deficiencies and pick up what there is
to be heard, but with these, more than with
most acousticals, it is possible to listen
directly, without much filtering and correcting at all. They are really quite a remarkable
lot, and the transference to LP is smooth, if
sometimes questionable as to solution of the
eternal revolutions -pitch problem that has
to be dealt with in all such projects.
The performances selected for inclusion
give no cause for complaint except that there
aren't more of them. All are good, by the
high standards applicable to singing in
1910 -I I, and some are exceptionally fine.
The most impressive, if not the most spectacular, is Emmy Destinn's singing in the
the whole
Mascagni duet. This is superb
emotional burden poured out without reserve, with the greatest intensity, yet everything kept within the frame of singing that
is classically pure and unmarred by anti vocal driving of tones out of focus for the
sake of effect. If everyone sang Santuzza
this way (Ebe Stignani still does), no one
would have cause to blame verismo for the
uneven techniques of most singers now.
Maria
Then there are two coloratura arias
Galvany's fleet, fresh, beautifully poised
" Ombra leggiera," and Lucette Korsoff's
brilliantly virtuosic "0 lieto suol," which can
be commended to the attention of anyone
who wonders why Les Huguenots is not
given nowadays. Miss Korsoff's passage work is wonderfully free and supple, but
even so she sounds small -scale and pallid
when her performance is set beside that
enormously exciting Melba fragment captured on a cylinder during a Metropolitan
performance in 1901 and preserved now on
the IRCC label.
-
-
Continued on page 88
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
86
www.americanradiohistory.com
The young pianist EUGENE ISTOMIN approaches the
CHOPIN NOCTURNES with the saine "astonishing
maturity" that so impressed critics when he appeared last
November with the Philharmonic -Symphony Orchestra of
New York. His complete grasp of the intimate poetry in
these pieces makes this ONE OF THE MOST TREASURED
PIANO RECORDINGS EVER ISSUED!
CH
FIN
ë
ITT E
3
J I-IléT E
on two 12" High Fidelity
Chopin: Complete Noctuni
Records- available separately or in deluxe set.
-
LP
X11,
5051 (Nos. 1 -10) x'1.98
(Nos. 11 -19) .s:í.98
SL -22() S7.98
NH. 505.3
Eugene Istonain records exclusively for
COLUMBIA
Prices suggested list.
RECORDS
Ca,
APRIL 1956
"coiurdi:i
L,
,., T. ni
87
www.americanradiohistory.com
A singer who had a limited career here
but a great career at La Scala, Carmen Melis
sings a thoroughly good "Ritorna vincitor,"
but not one essentially better than others
of the first caliber. Celestina Boninsegna,
whose stage career was not notable but
whose recordings have nourished a cult of
worshippers, gives her full power in "Pace,
pace," with results that are anyhow emphatic. And Marie Rappold, who offered
herself as "the original" in Edison Tone Test Recitals, and who was the first wholly
American -trained member of the Metropolitan, sings a smooth, controlled "Vissi
d'arte."
The sound is as has been described; the
surfaces are good.
Good historical -biographical notes by Mr. Gelatt come in a
booklet. All told, a very interesting and
worthwhile record and strongly recommended. Perhaps the Edison people will
sell enough Voicewriters to encourage them
to make more such releases or re- releases.
J. H., Jr.
RUGGERO GERLIN
Keyboard Music of Bach and His Sons
J.
S. Bach:
Fantasia -Rondo in C minor,
BWV Anh. 86; Aria variata alla maniera
italiana, BWV 989. C. P. E. Bach: Rondo
in G; Sonata in E minor; W. F. Bach:
Fugue in D minor; Fugue in E-fiat; Polonaise in F.
Ruggero Gerlin, harpsichord and piano.
OISEAU -LYRE OL 50097.
r2 -in. $4.98.
Emory Cook might have chosen a better
title for this record; maybe something
like "The Compleat In Sanitie." The
blasé "Compleat In Fidelytie" does nothing
to describe this enchanting program of
auditory torments.
If this doesn't get an award for the
nuttiest record of the Aspirin Age, I'll be
surprised and also a little disappointed. The
jacket illustration itself starts things rolling
with a delightful nightmare of high fidelity symbols and fetishes which include
a decadent -looking gentleman dipping a
loudspeaker attached to the end of a fishing pole into a bubbling brook, and a
peanut- vender's cart which looks as if
it might be equipped to press Microfusion
disks. The Geflockadyne amplifier and a
rum- toting Great Dane listening to his
master's acoustically- reproduced voice complete this scene of sylvan charm.
The back of the jacket, though, is the
key to the whole mystery, listing the twelve
recorded items in a matter -of -fact manner
which leads one to immediate incredulity.
After all, who ever heard of recording a
high -fidelity baby's yowling and a barrage
of Mexican firecrackers and pewter church bells, and sandwiching a band of scratchy
acoustic cylinder record sounds in between
them?
These might be credible in view of the
two earlier, very-hi -fi bands of jet planes
and railway trains, but the Technical
Section is the most fantastic thing I've
ever heard on records, and I still can't
believe it. The idea of offering the worst distorted organ sound ever put on disks,
for instance, is either genius or madness,
but I am not positive which.
The sound, where it is supposed to be
clean, is remarkably so. The recordings
of trains and jet planes are a mean test
for any but the best pickups, and the
other live sounds are so realistic that it
is disconcertingly easy to forget you're
listening to a record. First -class demonstration material for a top -quality hi -fi
system, but hard on the also -rans. The
manufacturer offers to anyone whose pickup can ride the whole thing without dis-
sentative piece or two by Johann Christian,
this little survey would have been even
more interesting.
The compositions by
Johann Sebastian are played crisply on a
harpsichord and the others performed sensitively on a piano. First -rate recording. N. B.
The
Fantasia -Rondo attributed here to
is listed in the Schmieder
catalogue among the works of doubtful
authenticity. To these ears it has a solid
Johann- Sebastian like character, but there
are some traits in it that make one wonder
whether it is not an early work by a gifted
younger contemporary of his. Of the two
pieces by Carl Philipp Emanuel, the rondo
seems to me the more interesting. It is
imaginative, rather sprawling, but with expressive harmonies and a gently melancholy
Johann Sebastian
Emory, Cut It Out!
ITHINK that, under the circumstances,
air despite the major key. Wilhelm Friedemann's Fugue in D minor, with its sinuously
coiling subject, is a little gem, and his
other two pieces are hardly less attractive.
If room could have been found for a repre-
torting or skipping grooves "a large and
gaudy certificate" deeming him a member
in good standing. No one who attempts
to play the "Wide -Range Distortion" band
on this disk is likely to qualify.
One whole side of the Compleat In
Fidelytie is devoted to recordings of wind:
warm wind, cold wind, high wind, low
wind, and zephyric moans that left me
shivering under a blanket beside the
radiator.
But the real gems of this disk are the
worst recordings. From an ancient cylinder
phonograph comes a horribly sub -fi rendition of Sousa's Thunderer March and
a cynically profane little ditty called He
Goes to Church on Sunday. Both are
bristling with groove distortion, wow,
flutter, and irregular discontinuities, although the lyrics on the latter number
are appallingly intelligible.
The
Wide -Range Distortion
band
(Technical Section) is of interest only
to those who don't know what distortion
sounds like. This "recording" of the
Morelia Organ, in Mexico, is absolutely
staggering in its unrestrained sonic filthiness; a truly incredible monstrosity of
screaming, plunging distortion that is
guaranteed to turn conscientious hi -fi perfectionists into blubbering, cringing idiots.
And as if it weren't enough to be subjected
to two minutes of 35o per cent harmonic
distortion from a church organ, its last
dying echo is followed by a very clean
reproduction of a high -fidelity fly, which
seems intent on buzzing its languid way
into the diaphragm of the recording microphone.
Anyone who buys this record is out
of his mind, but I feel sorry for anyone
who isn't crazy enough to go out and
buy it. The hour spent listening to it is
good for the soul
my reaction as the
last gust of wind blew through my pulsating woofer was "There, but for the
Grace of God, goes fi!"
J. GORDON HOLT
-
THE COMPLEAT IN FIDELYTIE
Cook Labourtries
Zounds of Ye Tymes
Longue Plae 1044 12 -in. $4.98.
88
GIANNI POGGI
Italian Songs
Torna a Surriento; Capelli bianchi; Mare chiare; Malia di Napoli; 0 sole mio; Maria,
Mari!; Ricordi di quel di musica; Non t'odio,
No!; Addio, sogni di gloria; Dicitencello vuie;
Non ti scordar di me; Mattinata Siciliana;
Domani turnarra; Voce e notte.
LONDON
LL
942.
12 -in.
$3.98.
Poggi, of course, is one of the mainstays
of London's Italian opera wing, but this
sally into lighter if just as difficult music is
not too fortunate. The voice sounds throttled much of the time, and the expressivity
the material demands is hardly ever in evidence. It's a disappointment, even though
Mr. Poggi's tenor is a big one, and frequently of brilliant tone, especially in the higher
register.
R. K.
RICHARD TUCKER
Opera Arias
Verdi: Un Ballo in Maschera: Di tu se fedele.
Puccini: Manon Lescaut: Donna non vidi mai.
Verdi:
Ingemisco.
Requiem:
Giordano:
Andrea Chénier: Un dì all' azzuro spazio.
Mascagni: Iris: Apri la tua finestra. Massenet:
Manon: Ah, fuyez, douce image. Verdi:
Luisa Miller: Quando le sere al placido. Il
Trovatore: Ah! si, ben mio.
Richard Tucker, tenor; Columbia Symphony
Orchestra, Fausto Cleva, cond.
COLUMBIA ML 5062. 12 -in. $3.98.
At the time of his debut in 5944, Richard
Tucker's voice was noted as exceptional, free
and open in delivery, perhaps a little small
in size for his role of Enzo in Gioconda.
Today it is ample enough for the parts he
sings, sufficiently big, indeed, for heavier
ones. But his singing remains lyrical, and
his temperament suits him for the less
heavily dramatic roles. He is in excellent
voice throughout this program, and the
arias he has chosen show him at his best.
The Improviso from Andrea Chénier, with
preceding recitative, is strong if not so
impassioned as most tenors make it; even
Di quella pira (sung in B rather than C) is
not hurled out in the manner of Caruso or
Tamagno (this stretto follows the aria Ah!
si, ben mio and makes a triumphal finish for
the recital). Quando le sere al placido, one
of Verdi's loveliest melodies, is done with
recitative; in the opening part of this scene
we have the most dramatic singing of the
program.
The recording has a great deal of presence
too much, indeed, for the good of the
balance. The orchestra is quite definitely
in the background.
P. L. M.
-
Continued on page 90
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
"Only LONDON could do justice to this work"
DONIZETTI
LA FAVORITA
Leonore ..GIULIETTA SIMIONATO
Fernando.... ..... GIANNI POGGI
Alfonso
ETTORE BASTIANINI
Baldassare
Don Gasparo
Inez
...
JEROME HINES
PIERO DI PALMA
BICE MAGNANI
Chorus and Orchestra of Maggio Musicale Fiorentino
(Choius Master: Andrea Morosini) Conductor: ALBERTO EREDE
1LL.4-.t.9
(:1
-1'" Records)
$11.9
Italiaa- English Libretto
rarely heard in the world's opera houses because it demands exceptional vocalists;
mezzo soprano with a high C, a tenor with o D flot, o bass with a low E and o baritone capable
of that much abused style known as bel- canto. We modestly like to think that only London ffrr with its
tremendous reservoir of fine singers could possibly hope to do this opera justice via recording. At
any rote, it would be exceedingly difficult to uncover a cast better suited to the material
than the one utilized here.
This opera is
a
"Destined to be
a
best seller"
RENATA TEBALDI
OPERATIC RECITAL-NO. 2
(Puccini)
LA BOHEME -Mi chiamano Mimi
(Puccini)
LA BOHEME -Addio di Mimi
MADAMA BUTTERFLY -Tu tu piccolo Iddio (Puccini)
(Verdi)
Patria mia
AIDA
(Puccini)
MANON LESCAUT -L'ora o tirsi
MANON LESCAUT -Solo, perdutta,
-0
abbandonata
LA TRAVIATA -Ah! fors e lui
LA TRAVIATA- Sempre libera
LA TRAVIATA -Addio del passato
OTELLO -Salce, salce
(Puccini)
(Verdi)
(Verdi)
(Verdi)
(Verdi)
(Verdi)
OTELLO-Ave Maria
with Orchestra and Chorus of Accademia di Santa Cecilia, Rome
Conductors: Alberto Erede & Francesco Molinari -Pradelli
$3.98
LL -1255
89
APRIL 1956
www.americanradiohistory.com
Dialing Your Disks
All LP disks are recorded with treble boost
and bass cut, the amount of which often
varies from one manufacturer to another.
To play a disk, the bass below a certain
turnover frequency must be boosted, and
the treble must be rolled off a certain number of decibels at Io,000 cycles. Recommended control settings to accomplish this
are listed for each manufacturer. Equalizer
control panel markings correspond to the
RECORD LABEL
Allied
Amer. Rec. Soc.
Angel
Arizona
tAtlantic
16
12
13.7
13.7
13.7
12
500R
500R
13.7
13.7
Bethlehem
Blue Note Jazz
Boston
*Caedmon
Canyon
Capitol
Capitol -Cetra
Cetra -Soria
Classic Editions
Colosseum
*Columbia
Concert Hall
*Contemporary
500R
500R
500C
500R
500R
500R
500R
500C
500R
500R
500R
500R
13.7
13.7
tCook (SOOT)
500
500
EMS
Epic
Esoteric
Folkways
*Good -Time Jazz
Haydn Society
HMV
Kapp
500E
500R
500R
13.7
13.7
13.7
13.7
13.7
13.7
13.7
10.5
13.7
16
13.7
13.7
16
16
500R
13.7
16
13.7
16
McIntosh
*Mercury
MGM
Montilla
New Jazz
Nocturne
Oceanic
*L'Oiseau -Lyre
*Overtone
Oxford
Pacific Jazz
Philharmonia
tPolymuaic
Prestige
RCA Victor
Remington
Riverside
Romany
Savoy
Tempo
Transradio
Urania
500R
500R
500
500R
500R
500R
500R
13.7
13.7
13.7
13.7
13.7
13.7
500C
16
500R
500E
500C
500R
13.7
13.7
400
500
12
16
50011
13.7
13.7
16
13.7
13.7
13.7
50011
500R
500
500R
500R
500R
500
500C
500R
400, 12
No. 1001 -1022: 630, 16
To No. C6160: 400, 12
To 1955: 400, 12.7
To 1955: 400, 12.7
To January 1954: 500, 16
To 1955: 500C, 16.
To 1954: 500C, 16.
No. 3501, 2501, 2502, 2505, 2507, 2001,
2002: 400, 12. No. 2504: 600, 16
To November 1955: 500. 16
No. 2 -15, 18 -20, 24 -26: 630, 16. No. 17,
22:400, 12. No. 16. 21, 23, 24: 500R, 13.7
No. ES 500, 517, EST 5, 6: 400, 12
To 1955: 500C, 16
No. 1, 5 -8: 500, 16. No. 3, 9 -19: 400, 12
No. 100 -103, 1000 -1001: 800, 16
To No. 846: 500C, 10.5
13.7
500R
13.7
Vox
500R
500R
500R
13.7
13.7
13.7
Gateway to the West; Main Street; A la claire
fsntalne; Pow Wong Prairie Sunset; Alcorn
Highway; Ottawa Heights; Lake cf the Woods.
lionterin grandeur; Canadian Caravan.
Robert Farnon and his Orchestra.
LONDON
LL
1267.
12 -in.
1
-3, 5, XPI -10: 400, 12
To 1954: 500C, 10.5
No. 1 -3: 500, 16
No.
1
-13: 400, 12
GRUSSE AUS DER HEIMAT
Glaube mir, In mir klingt ein Lied; So ein Tag
wunderschön wie heute; Nach der Heimat
möcht ich wieder; Leg deine Hand in meine
Hemd; Vor meinem Vaterhaus; Ich bin so
gern zu Hause; Vergissmeinnicht; Heimweh
nach St. Pauli; Uber's Jahr, wenn die Kornblumen blühen; Ich bin heute ja so verliebt;
Nimms uns mit, Kapitän, at die Reise.
f
Willy Langel, Erich Kassen, Nana Gualdi,
Carl Bay.
CADENCE CLP
ioo6.
12
-in.
$3.98.
A nostalgic
peek, larded with Teutonic
sentiment, at some of Germany's popular
and tearful tunes of this century. The performances, handled by a quartet of capable
soloists, are very properly in the spirit of
the whole enterprise, which is heavily
gemütlich indeed.
R. K.
ROY HAMILTON
Without a Song; Cuban Love Song; Trees; A
Little Voice; Misty Valley; Take Me with
You,. Since I Fell for You; All This Is Mine:
If You Are But a Dream; My Own Beloved;
If Each One Would Teach One; Because.
12 -in.
$3.98.
Mr. Hamilton has one of the biggest popular
baritones to be heard today, and he puts it
in his open, belting way
to good use
on a good dozen tunes that can stand the
treatment.
He is much more effective,
however, on some of our more cherished
popular songs than on the few "inspirational" ones he has also included in his
program.
R. K.
-
HE
To September 1952: 500 or 800, 12
To 1955:
400, 12
No. 7059, 224, 7066, 7063, 7065, 603,
7069: 400, 12. Others: 500C, 16
No. 411 -442, 6000 -6018, 7001 -7011, 80018004: 600, 16
500, 16 unless otherwise specified.
To October 1955: 600C, 16; or if AES specified: 400, 12
*Currently re- recording old masters for RIAA curve.
tBinaural records produced on this :abet have no treble boost on the inside band, which should be
played without any rolloff.
He (McGuire Sisters); In God We Trust
(Johnny Desmond); The Bible Tells Me So
(Don Cornell); I See God (Lawrence Welk);
The Lord Is a Busy Man (Steve Lawrence);
Lovely Lady Dressed in Blue (Ames Bros.);
One God (Dorothy Collins); If You Believe
(McGuire Sisters ); Jacob's Ladder (The Four
Girls); The Ten Commandments (Alan Dale);
These Things Are Known (Only to God)
(Buddy Greco); The Lord's Prayer (Johnny
Desmond).
CORAL CRL 57033.
12 -in.
$3.98.
Out of the religious revival that is skimming
swiftly across the surface of American life
today comes, finally,
90
$3.98.
Here is an album that is labeled precisely;
Canadian Impressions is just that. Simple
and melodic, it unpretentiously describes
in musical terms (and old- fashioned ones,
too) famous sights of the composer's homeland. The sketches are all harmless and on
their own terms do exactly what they set
out to do.
R. K.
-
No. LP
16
16
13.7
CANADIAN IMPRESSIONS
EPIC LN 3179.
To October 1954: 400, 12
16
Vanguard
Walden
*Westminster
To 1955:
12 -15
500C
500R
500
No. 501 -529: 500, 16
No. 901 -905, 308, 310, 311: 500R, 13.7
No. 906 -920, 301 -304, 309: 630, 16
16
13.7
13.7
13.7
13.7
13.7
Kendall
*London, Lon. Int.
Lyrichord
To 1955: 400, 12.7
16
500R
500R
500R
500R
50011
OLD
Record No. or Date: Turnover, Rolloff
Rolloff
500
Elektra
-
NEW
Turnover
500
400
500R
500R
500R
Audiophile
Bach Guild
*Bartok
Coral
Decca
-
following values in the table below. ROLL OFF
io.5: LON, FFRR. 12: AES, RCA,
Old RCA. 13.7: RIAA, RCA, New RCA,
New AES, NARTB, ORTHOphonic. 16:
NAB, LP, COL, COL LP, ORTHOcoustic.
TURNOVER
400: AES, RCA. 5ooC:
LP, COL, COL LP, Mod NAB, LON,
FFRR. 5ooR: RIAA, ORTHOphonic,
NARTB, New AES. 500: NAB: 63o:
BRS. Soo: Old RCA.
THE MUSIC BETWEEN
a
record album called
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
It's probably what we've all been waiting
for; the songs are all declarative, even elemental, in a certain sense of the word. As
for the performers, they manage a degree
of conviction and sincerity and volume that
could conceivably blast you straight into
eternity, where you will have some fairly
hair- raising stories to tell about the new
religious America's popular conception of
R. K.
He.
The Kaye voice, with its hard and nasal
quality, is anything but seductive; and when
with the aid of
as it is here
enlarged
echo chambers, it becomes quite tiring.
Some engineering shenanigans permit Kaye
to indulge in the longest and wierdest laugh
on record, if that means anything. Decca's
sound is clean and well forward, but takes
on an uncomfortable screeching quality
when the female choristers are at work.
J. F. I.
HERE COME THE GIRLS
YURI KAZAKOV
Yuri Kazakov Plays the Bayaat
He.
My Heart Belongs to Daddy (Mary Martin);
One Night of Lore (Grace Moore); I Get a
Kick Out of You (Ethel Merman); Lonely to
Look At (Irene Dunn); Something I Dreamed
Last Night (Ella Logan); Where Are You
(Gertrude Niesen); Wake Up and Lote
(Alice Faye) Tonight We Love (Jane Froman 1:
I Cover the Waterfront (Connie Boswell
Sand in My Shoes (Helen Morgan); Once in .r
While (Martha Raye); Dream Shadows (Behr
-
-
ANGEL 65020.
12 -in.
$3.98.
This is a remarkable record by one of Russia's
leading button -key accordion players. Kazakov plays the bayan with a virtuosity and a
command of tonal coloring that could well
be the despair of some of our heroes of
-
more conventionally accepted instruments.
from one who is a
It is beautiful playing
musician first and only second a bayanvirtuoso. Listen to it if you want to hear
for the first time what the accordion can
R. K.
really sound like.
ANDRE KOSTELANETZ
You and the Night and the Music
My Funny Valentine; Thou Swell; Nocturne:
My Romance; Serenade; Entrance of the Little
Fauns,, Dancing on the Ceiling; To a Wild
Rare: I Could Write a Book; Poème: Blues in
the Night: You and the Night and the Music.
COLUMBIA CL 772.
12
-in. $3.98.
hodgepodge of recordings by Kostelanetz
and his orchestra gathered together under a
A
;
Daniels).
EPIC LN 3188.
12
-in. $3.98.
Epic Records has had the happy idea of
gathering onto a single LP some of the
more noteworthy early recording efforts of
celebrated musical comedy scars. Of special
interest are Helen Morgan, plaintively winding her way through a rather silly song called
Sand in My Shoes; Grace Moore, opening up
wonderful, warm memories with One Night
of Love; and Ethel Merman singing I Get a
Kick Out of You with superlative style. There
are one or two items of considerably lesser
interest, but in general it's an album at
once evocative and filled with enormous
R. K.
pleasure.
APRIL RELEASES
BARTOK Second Suite, Op. 4. Minneapolis Symphony, Doratl
MG50098
conducting.
ANTON KARAS
Viennese Bonbons
Anton Karas, zither, accompanied by accordions.
PERIOD
SOL
BRAHMS Tragic and Academic Festival Overtures; Symphony No 3
in f Major. Minneapolis Symphony, Dorati conducting. MG50072
1016. co -in. $3.98.
suggests, Anton Karas' latest
program consists of Viennese puffs, in waltz
time, march time, and several other tempos.
Karas, of course, is a well -known and skillful
zitherist; if his intrument's peculiar, whiny
tonal quality happens to suit your mood,
this record is exactly what you're looking
As the title
for.
BLOCH Violin Sonata No. 1; Violin Sonata No.
2
tique"). Rafael Druian, violin; John Simms, piano.
R. K
(
"Poeme Mys
MG50095
DANNY KAYE
The Court ,Jester
Life Could Not Better Be; Outfo.v the Fox; AI t
Heart Knows a Lovely Song; I'll Take l 'oa
Dreaming: I Lire to Love; Willow, Willou.
Wales: Pass the Basket; The Maladjustea
Jester; Where Walks My True Love.
Danny Kaye, with chorus and orchestra
conducted by Vic Schoen.
DECCA DL 8212.
12 -in.
812 Festival Overture;
Capriccio Italien. Minneapolis Symphony,
Dorati conducting.
TCHAIKOVSKY
1
Violin
violinist;
IVES Violin Sonata No. 1; PORTER
Sonata No. 2. Rafael
John Simms, pianist.
Druian,
MG50096
MGS0054
53.98.
Danny Kaye is rolling his tongue
around the involved lyrics of Sylvia Fine's
patter songs, all goes well in this selection
of numbers from the comedian's latest film
venture. Although they are not in the same
class as the fabulous "Tchaikovsky" number
from Lady in the Dark or the complicated
"Melody in Four F" from Let's Face It, they
are always smart, amusing, and well suited
to Kaye's talent for racing through complicated rhymes at breakneck speed. But when
the comedian turns ballad singer, the results
are neither as successful nor as pleasing.
As long as
RECENT RELEASES
SCHUMANN Symphony No. 2 in C Major.
Detroit Symphony, Paray conducting.
Violin Sonatas Nos. 2, 3 and 4. Rafael
Druian, violinist; John Simms, pianist.
IVES
MG50102
MG50097
HIGH FIDELITY
CLASSICS
MERCURY RECORD CORP.
CHICAGO
1,
ILL.
LIVING PRESENCE
APRIL 1956
9,
www.americanradiohistory.com
MOM
title that has little or nothing to do with
most of what it is supposed to describe.
However, its top -flight Kostelanetz, even
though most of the compositions will raise
familiar and lush echoes of previous recordings by this particular master in your mind.
R. K.
BEATRICE LILLIE
An Evening with Beatrice Lillie
Softly to Me; What Good Am I Without You;
I Thought of You Last Night; That Ole Devil
Called Love; Remind Me.
DECCA DL 8214.
12 -in.
Another civilized entry by Miss Southern
into her special vocal field, in which she is
one of the most well- mannered and un-
Beatrice Lillie; with Eadie and Rack accompanying at the pianos.
LL
1373.
r2 -in.
$3.98.
can raise only a very muffled cheer for this
new Beatrice Lillie recording, which seems
to me to suffer from a superfluity of indifferent material. Easily the most sparkling
performance is the comedienne's deadly
parody on the drawing -room ballad about
fairies that cavort at the bottom of the garden.
Her cutting dissection of the art of the folk
singer and the barbed humor of some
bibulous chatter to Maud are also well worth
having. The Novello song and the Coward
numbers, however, seem tired; and Paint
turns out to be more pointless than pointed.
Even the old Rodgers and Hart stand -by
Rhythm loses half its charm by being over elaborated. Eadie and Rack at the pianos
offer fine support, Miss Lillie is in good
voice, and London has provided excellent
sound. I wish I could have been more enJ. F. I.
thusiastic.
I
CADENCE CLP 1005.
12
-in. $3.98.
Billy Maxted is a well -known purveyor of
Dixieland music, but there are only a few
suggestions of that joyous stuff on this
record. Maxted plays a series of medleys
here, some of contemporary unknowns, the
rest of well -known turn -of- the -century melodies. It's trick material, played on a piano
rigged out variously with tacks and pawn
tickets, and what rhythmic help is needed is
forthcoming from the very professional Don
R. K.
Lamond and Eddie Safranski.
NOCOLA PAONE
Tony, the Ice Man; Whatta You Gonna Do,
Eh ?; Yappatty Yap; The Subway Song; Pretty
Lady; Mr. Police, That Is My Girl; The Coffee
Pot; I Love to Ballare with You.
CADENCE CLP 3001. Io -in. $2.98.
If dialect songs and spiel are what delight
you most, then Nocola Paone is very probably the man for you. His material is all
Italian, or American -Italian, and most of
its fun derives from mispronunciations and
awkward locutions. As I said, if dialect
R. K.
songs, etc
JERI SOUTHERN
You Better Go Nowt
You Better Go Now; Give Me Time; Something
I Dreamed Last Night; The Man That Got
Away; When I Fall in Love; Just Got to Have
Him Around; Dancing on the Ceiling; Speak
92
Sean O'Casey
affected practitioners. These are cool, cool
performances, in a literal sense, and very
sure every note of the way.
R. K.
LOU STEIN
From Broadway to Paris
Manhattan; Forty- Second Street; A Pretty Girl
Is Like a Melody; 'S Wonderful; Give My
Regards to Broadway; Top Hat, White Tie, and
BILLY MAXTED
Hi -Fi Keyboards
O'CASEY
Juno and the Paycock
Siobhán McKenna, Cyril Cusack, Maire
Kean, Seamus Kavanagh, and others.
Spoken introduction by Sean O'Casey.
ANGEL 354oß. Two 12 -in. $9.98.
Overture; Rhythm; Nanette; Folk Song Cycle;
Zither Song; Spinning Song; The Irish Song;
Weary of It All; Piccolo Marina; There Are
Times; Paint; Maud; There Are Fairies at
the Bottom of Our Garden; The Party's Over
Now.
LONDON
THE SPOKEN WORD
$3.98.
Tails; I Got Rhythm; Lullaby of Broadway; La
Vie en rose; La Mer (Beyond the Sea); Autumn
Leaves; C'est si bon; The Last Time I Saw Paris;
Crazy Rhythm; April in Paris; I Love Paris.
Lou Stein, piano.
EPIC LN 3186. 12 -in. $3.98.
Lou Stein joins a fast -growing company of
accomplished cocktail -lounge pianists with
this pleasant salute to Paris and Broadway.
There's not much to distinguish Mr. Stein
from George Feyer and a half-dozen others;
but what he does, he does with style and
no pretensions.
R. K.
CATERINA VALENTE
The Hi-Fi Nightingale
The Breeze and I; If Hearts Could Talk;
Temptation; This Ecstasy; Jalousie; Fiesta
Cubana; Malagueña; The Way You Love Me;
My Lonely Lover; Begin the Beguine; Siboney;
This Must Be Wrong.
DECCA DL 8203.
12 -in.
$3.98.
Caterina Valente enjoys considerable fame
and success on the Continent as a singer of
Latin melodies. She is also noted in America
through her popular recording of Malagueña,
which was one of the big hits of last year.
This album offers her in Latin melodies that
closely resemble Malagueña
combination, presumably, that cannot fail. Fail
or not, she sings throatily and well here,
even though at moments she is almost
swallowed into silence by the accompaniments of several gigantic orchestras. R. K.
-a
This recording of Sean O'Casey's classic
play about the troubles of a slum family
in Dublin at the time of the war for Irish
independence was made in Ireland last June.
It is a far from excellent reading of the play.
From one point of view, it may seem shrewd
to have picked Miss McKenna for Juno just
before she became a Broadway star in The
But she belongs to the
Chalk Garden.
wrong age -group and the wrong social
class: she is too young and too refined for
the part. Being highly intelligent she makes
matters worse by overdoing the attempt to
play both age and a proletarian crudity.
Consequently, what should be only the
customary roughness of a class comes
through sometimes as the ill -humor of an
individual, and it is hard for Miss McKenna
to make us believe that the same person
does the railing at the beginning and the
mourning at the end. Rather, we hear the
different voices of a skillful, miscast
actress.
I must add that there is something odd
about the vocal quality of this lovely and
accomplished actress, anyway; for in The
Chalk Garden, as in Juno, her voice will
suddenly get loud and then get soft again
for no apparent reason
as if a child had
turned up the volume and then hastily
turned it down again. At the end of Juno,
where Sara Allgood used to touch us as
deeply as we have ever been touched in any
modern play, Miss McKenna's voice is
wobbling so badly that, if we are at all
conscious of technique, we forget the play
and start thinking about vocal chords,
larynxes, and diaphragms.
It cannot be said that the rest of the cast
are uniformly better. Seamus Kavanagh
is an actor by no means worthy to step into
the shoes of Barry Fitzgerald and Arthur
Sinclair: his readings are correct enough,
but there is a lack not only of comic genius
but often even of comic quality. That fine
actor Cyril Cusack plays Joxer well, but on
my machine was often quite hard to understand, and my machine isn't all that bad.
As Mr. Cusack isn't the only actor on this
recording whom I found hard to follow, I
should say that I have never had any difficulty following O'Casey performances on
the Abbey stage, nor had I any difficulty
listening to another recording of Juno in
the studios of Radio Eireann. I am therefore
driven to the conclusion that these actors
really ar. gabbling, as actors are prone to do
when they play into a recording machine.
(If any reader of HIGH FIDELITY finds he
can hear every word of Maire Kean as Mrs.
Madigan, let him send in a letter saying so.)
For my money, the prize performance is
that of Miss May Craig as the neighbor
woman Mrs. Tancred who just stops by to
pour the vials of her grief over the Boyle
-
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
-
household and the whole wide world.
One reason, doubtless, is that Miss Craig
has been playing the part on stage for
decades. Another is just that she must always have been good. It's the best sort of
simple, heartfelt, lyrical.
Abbey acting
One more complaint. Plays are being
even more drastically and disastrously cut
for the disk than for the stage. A horrifying
example of What Not To Do is provided
by the excision from this recording of the
justly famous last scene of the play. Juno
is a "tragi- comedy" and O'Casey's most
audacious act was to refuse the obvious lure
of ending on Juno's final prayer and to
bring back the two comic good- for -nothings, Boyle and Joxer Daly, dead drunk and
repeating that the world's in a "state o'
chassis." To cut this last episode is to make
O'Casey go back on his own audacity.
I've stressed the bad side, because I don't
want the younger generation to think that
this is all that Juno and the Paycock, as performed, can mean and be. On the good
side, let me stress how important it is to
have O'Casey available in what is at least
correctly spoken form. If you've been reading O'Casey for some years without hearing
him, as many Americans have, you'll realize
when you play these records that you've
been missing what I am tempted to call
everything; for, if in general the style is
the man, this particular Dublin style is
Sean O'Casey, and if you don't hear it right
you don't understand it right. In my article
on Richard III (HIGH FIDELITY, March
1956) I gave some opinions as to what
purposes recorded drama cannot serve; I
am here suggesting what might be one of
its legitimate, and indeed invaluable, uses.
As for O'Casey's introductory speech, I
wish it consisted of something more inspiring than stage directions, but as a
permanent reminder of another great voice
of another great Irish writer, as rich in individual character as it is in local color, the
recording takes its place with the already
famous one of Joyce, Yeats, and Shaw.
-
ERIC BENTLEY
JOHN DONNE
WORDSWORTH
AND
WILLIAM
Selections from the poems of Donne and
Wordsworth, read by Christopher Hassall.
WESTMINSTER 18140. r2 -in. $4.98 (or
(3.98).
One's first response to this record, even
before listening to it, is that generally
aroused by the shock of incongruity. One
finds oneself indulging in wild speculawill some record company some
tion
day release a disk containing Highlights
from Werther on one side and Bach's
Goldberg Variations on the other? Such
a strange coupling is this record; and the
listener interested in hearing the versified
rendering of "emotion recollected in tranquillity" is also given the tortured ratiocination of a highly complex and intellectualized poet. Not that one is obliged to
listen to both sides; but if one doesn't intend to, why buy the record? The fact is,
that devotees of Donne are apt not to enjoy
Wordsworth and that lovers of the Romantic poets are equally apt to look with
loathing on the metaphysical school. Still,
the patient public probably should be
grateful for any effort to restore poetry
-
APRIL 1956
For even these virtues are not always
virtues.
So far as I am concerned, Mr. Hassall's
well-modulated tones and the even, measured tenor of his speech are simply unsuited to the poems of Donne. This
conclusion is particularly unfortunate in
that perhaps no poetry is more conversational and dramatic in quality, rather
than reflective and lyrical, than that of this
seventeenth -century saint and sinner
and no poetry cries more urgently to be
read aloud. Mr. Hassall seems sometimes
not to recognize that the vocatives are not
classical invocations but simple direct
address; that the imperative form of the
verb is not traditional "poetic" entreaty
but blunt command; that many of these
poems, written as dramatic monologue or
dialogue, must be read in the exclamatory
to its proper place as the speech of men
speaking to men, if not in "noble num-
bers" at least in language of heightened
intensity.
At least, the listener should be grateful
for a record which, in the first place,
presents a selection from both these poets
of the best -known and best-loved works
chosen with discrimination and tact; and
which presents also a reader of poetry
whose voice is intrinsically pleasing and
who can read verse in such a way that
the language is recognizable as English
and who abjures the declamatory manner
the stage and the rostrum seem so often
to bring out. One could certainly wholeheartedly recommend Mr. Hassall's reading
to teachers and students of "speech"
if only on the score of the purity of his
enunciation and the timbre of his voice.
-
-
VANGUARD
recordings for the connoisseur
AN OPEN
INVITATION
TO
IOU
Spring is Here in HiFi!
are in lose
at Vanguard
R"
Nhe
THE
know thatAlfred
With
1
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The Springtime of English Song
sings balcap will cap-
hauntingvoice
too.
'just
ture oourheart
music
It, try it-II
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this "coltreasure If not, we
you should
ranged'for
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your dealer
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THE THREE
RAVENS
lads
purrefund the
have
without question.
to credit
l
chase P
Songs of Folk and Minstrelsy,
out of Elizabethan England
ALFRED DELLER, counter -tenor
Desmond Duprè, lute and guitar
"A voice miraculously used with an impeccable sense of
technique and style." R. H. Hagan, San Francisco Chronicle
1
J/
Blossomtime in Vienna
Prescription
for Spring Fever
A HI-FI FROLIC
ORIE T
EXPRESS
WITH STRAUSS
Ten Polkas, a Galop, a March and the Beautiful Blue
Danube Waltz.
Vienna State Opera Orchestra
1 -12" VRS -476
Musical Journey
Through Europe.
Continental songs inimitably
A
15
-12" VRS -479
ANTON PAULIK, conductor
"Brilliantly buoyant performances in the traditional
Viennese manner. Sound of extreme purity and fidelity."
High Fidelity, on Paulik's Strauss Polkas. (VRS -438).
styled by
MANE
By Popular Request!
with the Boheme Bar Trio
" Liane is just about the most enchanting warbler this reviewer has
heard in a long time." The Billboard
1 -10"
VRS -7036
ANOTHER VANGUARD
HI -FI DEMONSTRATION DISC
Liane
Two complete
VANGUARD THEATRE SHOWCASE MEN
Spring Productions
A
NET AT Tile APOLLO
An on- the -spot live recording at Harlem's
famed Apollo Theatre. The entire Variety
Show, Amateur Night, the Apollo Band, and
featuring comedians George Kirby and Jackie
Mabley.
BOW TO
1
IC
-12" VRS -9006
AWEDLOCE
A Primer for Young Lovers and Old Wolves.
Written by Ira Wallach, gaily acted and narrated by Kaye Ballard, Stanley Prager, Johnny
Haymer, with incidental music.
1 -12" VRS -9005
Send for catalog to
V4N6UARD
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Eine kleine Nachtmusik, Serenade, K.525
G Minor, K. 550
Reproduced with dazzling fidelity, designed
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HI -FI FANS and CRITICS AGREE:
tone; that their frequent abrupt beginnings
and run -on lines demand the tone and
the rhythm of argument
and impassioned argument. The reading of The
Canonization comes closest to conveying
the peculiar tension of the sublime and
the ridiculous, the solemn and the
satiric, the cerebral and the passionate
which is characteristic of most of Donne's
poetry. The interpretation of The Funeral,
on the other hand, seems a rather somber
reading of a poem which some critics at
least consider to share, with many of
Donne's sophisticated justifications of seduction, the quality of jeux d'esprit. On
the whole the reading of the divine poems
comes off better. But even here one
wonders if Mr. Hassall is really suggesting
their similarity in language and method
to the secular poems. One supposes that
the narrator, himself a poet, recognizes in
that anguished plea for divine forgiveness
of sin, A Hymn to God the Father, the
thrice- repeated pun; but friends of mine
who listened to the reading were certainly
not made aware of it by the spoken word.
Perhaps no great matter, except that Donne
without some obeisance to his conceits, to
"the most heterogeneous ideas yoked by
violence together" is Donne undone.
With the poems of Wordsworth Mr.
Hassall seems more at home. He doesn't
quite achieve the sprightly dance of The
Daffodils or perhaps even "the gladness
of May "; but in the "season of calm
weather" he is at his best. There is
genuine eloquence in his reading of the
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AT LEADING RECORD SHOPS
THE BEST OF JAZZ
by John S. Wilson
BOB
ALEXANDER
QUINTET; AL
KLINK QUINTET
Progressive Jazz
Mambo; Rush Your; A Waltz; Chloe; Mi.0
Print: Surrey with the Fringe on Top.
Bob Alexander, trombone; Peanuts Hucko,
tenor saxophone; Bernie Leighton, piano;
Bob Carter, bass; Joe Morello, drums.
Carioca; Everything Happens to Me: She Didn't
Say; Strike Up the Band; The Nearness of You;
Spectacular.
Klink, tenor saxophone; Dick Hyman,
piano; Mundell Lowe, guitar; Trigger Alpert, bass; Eddie Shaughnessy, drums.
12 -in.
41 min.
GRAND AWARD 33 -325.
53.78.
Al
Alexander's group covers one side of this
disk, Klink's the other, and each side is
notable primarily for the work of a saxophonist. On Alexander's side, it is Peanuts
Hucko, the quondam Goodman -styled
clarinetist who has recently switched to
tenor saxophone and the modern manner.
In the process, he has brought with him that
rugged swinging sense that buoyed up his
clarinet playing. He plays with fascinating
fire with Alexander's group, particularly on
Chloe and Surrey, with the Fringe on Top,
and even at his most fiery his tone is clean
and his phrasing beautifully articulated.
Klink, the saxophonist on the other side,
has spent most of his career buried either
in Glenn Miller's band or in studio work.
He has been known in the past as an exceptionally polished section man and on
this disk he shows that he is also a graceful
And forceful soloist with a tone of amazing
purity for a jazz saxophonist. Both bands
are swingingly modern rather than progressive, as that term is generally applied
to jazz groups.
FIREHOUSE FIVE PLUS TWO
The Firehouse Five Story
sonnets; and the expression of a somewhat
formal and public emotion is made with
an admirably restrained and quiet dignity.
Milton, thou shouldst be living at this
hour and The World is too much with
us are made to seem, even to listeners
who find the didactic uncongenial and
the hortatory unsympathetic, much better
poems qua poems than they had seemed
before. The Intimations of Immortality
ode, spoiled for many readers by classroom
exercises of a moralistic cast, takes on a
new freshness in Mr. Hassall's reading;
and whatever one's own "recollections from
early childhood," after all, there often
are "thoughts that do lie too deep for
and to hear this meditation given
tears"
voice without a note of the maudlin or
saccharine is in itself a salutary experience.
This record is not accompanied by texts,
in an age much more visual- than
which
should
perhaps
be
auditory -minded
mandatory. And the notes on the jacket
ought to be ignored.
-
-
JOAN GRIFFITHS
Vol. 1: Firehouse Stomp; Everybody Loves ,11y
Baby; Pagan Love Song; San; Fireman's
Lament; Blues My Naughty Sweetie; Yes Sir,
That's My Baby; Red Hot River Valley; Riverside Bluer, Brass Bell; World is Waiting fathe Sunrise: Tiger Rag.
GOOD TIME JAZZ L 12010. 12 -in. 34 min.
$4.85.
Vol. 2: Frenzkie and Johnny; Sweet Georgia
Brown; Sobbin' Blues; Just a Stomp at Twilight:
Down Where the Sun Goes Down; St. Louis
Blues; 12th Street Rag; Copenhagen; Wabash
Blues; Firechief Rag; Lonesome Mama Bluer;
Who Walks In When I Walk Out.
GOOD TIME JAZZ L 12011. 12 -in. 37 min.
$4.85.
Vol. 3:
Chinatown, My Chinatown; South:
Lonesome Railroad Blues; Show Me the Way
to the Fire; Lorin' Sam; When You Wore a
Tulip; Five Foot Two; San Antonio Rose;
Southern Comfort; I've Been Floating Down the
Old Green River; Mississippi Rag; Rennin'
Wild.
GOOD TIME JAZZ
$4.85.
L
12012.
12
-in.
35 min.
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
Unlike any other jazz band that you are
liable to hear on records, the Firehouse Five
plays only when it feels like it. This unusually permissive attitude is made possible
because all but
in fact, mandatory
two of the Firemen are regularly employed
at Walt Disney's studios and their musical
activities are their recreation. This is reflected in their playing. It is carefree, whimsical; and it is, as the label they record for
so succinctly states, "good time jazz." The
basic sphere of these Firemen is the traditional jazz repertoire. But it is not enough
for them simply to get together and give
this repertoire a vigorous workout. It is
their pleasure to decorate their work with
appropriate stratagems. Just a Stomp at
Twilight, for instance, is exactly the tune
you would expect it to be, stomped up
heartily and preceded and followed by a
Who
briefly devout camp -meetin' organ.
Walks in When I Walk Out includes a
"marching men" sound effect borrowed
from the Disney studio. Their fire siren
takes a break on Tiger Rag and adds to the
panic on Runnin' Wild. They have evolved
a devastating take -off on the Rhythm Boys
for Sweet Georgia Brown and greet the tango
section of St. Louis Blues with a piercing
police whistle and joyous cries of "La
BARNEY KESSEL, Vol.
To Swing or Not to Swing
I've Got; Scuttlebutt; Two for the Blues; Perdido;
Jumpin' Jack; Lucke Duck; Little Pony.
EPIC LN 3187.
12 -in.
35 min.
3
Contemporary Blues; Wail Street; Happy Feeling.
$3.95.
Harry Edison, trumpet; Bill Perkins, tenor
saxophone; Jimmy Rowles, piano; Barney
Kessel, Al Hendrickson, guitars; Red
Mitchell, bass; Shelly Manne, drums.
Hefti's new band has gone back to one of
the fundamentals of the successful big jazz
bands of years past: an irresistibly toe tapping beat. The rhythmic pulse on these
performances is smooth, uncluttered, and
moving. Over this, Hefti has laid out a
variety of pleasant lines which his band
attacks with obvious relish. The ensemble
work has neatness and sparkle; the soloists
make their points aptly and move on. The
sum is a form of big band jazz that is soundly
rooted in the early Basie theory and expressed in terms that take advantage of the
newer jazz ideas without making a fetish
of them. This is one of the most encouraging big band disks released in a long time.
Louisiana; Indiana; 12th Street Rag; Moten
Suing.
Georgie Auld in place of Perkins; Iry
Cottler in place of Manne.
Midnight Sun; Don't Blame Me; Embraceable
You; Begin the Blues.
Kessel; Hendrickson; Rowles;
Cottler.
CONTEMPORARY
C
3513.
Mitchell;
12 -in.
40 min.
$4.85.
`PERMISSION
GRANTED'
Rhumba!"
Between such fits of fancy, they play a
sturdy and respectable brand of jazz which
is always enthusiastic even though it may
occasionally wobble with a little uncertainty. These three disks cover the group's
career from 1949 to 1954. There are no
great thoughts behind this music. It's just
an enviable condition for anything.
happy
-
LIONEL HAMPTON AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Apollo Hall Concert .1954
How High the Moon; Star Dust; Lover Man;
Midnight Sun; Love Is Here to Stay; The Nearness of You; Vibe Boogie; Flying Home.
EPIC LN 3190.
12 -in.
39 min.
$3.95.
Although attributed to Hampton and his
orchestra, this disk is almost unrecognizable
as a blood brother to the series of dismally
tasteless recordings made by Hampton's
Actually
and fortunately
the
band.
band sits idly by throughout almost the
entire performance while Hampton plays
one fascinating solo after another. It is only
on the final track of the second side, on
which Vibe Boogie leads into Flying Home,
that the full band bestirs itself and takes up
its musical blunt instruments. For these
final grooves, this disk is just as dreadful
as any of the other similar things Hampton
and his band have emitted. But through
most of it Hampton himself is a delight,
weaving together a series of provocative
ideas with that wonderfully stirring beat that
pulses through all his playing. Occasionally
he misguidedly allows his otherwise silent
sidemen to intrude with a tedious bit of
clowning (the intrusion on Star Dust is
brutal) but this is a small price to pay for
hearing as much undiluted Hampton as this
-
-
Now...for the first time in history...
the U.S. Military Academy, West Point, has permitted
the recording of
THE CADET CHAPEL ORC-A
WEST POINT
T
LARGEST CHURCH ORGAN IN THE
WESTERN HEMISPHERE
A
rare opportunity for high fidelity fans to hear and to have the
most inspiring music ever recorded. Performed by CLAIRE COCI,
organist of the New York Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra.
EACH. TOCCATA
PRELUDE
& FUGUE, D MINOR
& FUGUE, A MINOR
PASSACAGLIA & FUGUE, C MINOR
"COME, SAVIOR OF THE GENTILES"
Handsomely bound in a De Luxe Album. Program booklet by the
noted musical authority, R. D. Darrell.
DL 210
FOR THIS UNPRECEDENTED EVENT, EACH RECORD IS PRESSED
FROM Master Stompers
TO
ACHIEVE THE FINEST SOUND
REPRODUCTION.
disk affords.
NEAL IIEFTI AND HIS ORCHESTRA
Hefti Hot 'n Hearty
G H
F I D E L I T Y
W. 55TH ST..
NEW YORK 18. N. Y.
H
Buttercup; You Do Something to Me; Plymouth
Rock; Chug -a -lug; Ready Rudy; Er'rything
.
I
236
APRIL 1956
95
www.americanradiohistory.com
The question in the title, if it is a question,
is answered definitely in the affirmative.
Kessel has always been a pre -eminently
swinging guitarist and he is in fine form
throughout this disk, both on his four relatively meditative solo numbers and as a
driving element with the larger groups.
This disk differs from Kessel's first two sets
for Contemporary in the addition of trumpet
and saxophone. Harry Edison's trumpet
work has that punching zest which made
him one of the stars of the original Basie
band, while George Auld and Bill Perkins,
sharing the saxophone chair, both play
with a lightness and phrasing that are
strongly reminiscent of Lester Young in
his days with that same Basie band. In
fact, the septet numbers are often very close
to the Basie spirit, for
in addition to
Edison and the Young -like tenors
Jimmie
- -
Rowles frequently turns to Basie piano
figures. There is a happy feeling (to borrow
one of the titles) about the entire disk, a
feeling that is established and maintained
by the crisp, flowing manner in which all
the numbers are played.
GERRY MULLIGAN QUARTET
Paris Concert
Come Out Wherever You Are; Five Brothers;
Laura; Love Me or Leave Me; Utter Chaos;
Bernie's Tune; Walkin' Shoes; Moonlight in
Vermont; The Lady Is a Tramp.
Gerry Mulligan, baritone saxophone; Bob
Brookmeyer, valve trombone; Red Mitchell,
bass; Frank Isola, drums.
PACIFIC JAZZ PJ 1210. 12 -in. 38 min. $3.98.
The concert in question was held two years
Aak, de 6',atEueaw7urn_
MOZART:
The
Magic
Flute
Decca takes great pride in presenting what we feel to be the
most exciting Magic Flute ever
recorded! Capturing all the
beauty and magic of Mozart's
superb score, Ferenc Fricsay
directs the RIAS Symphony
Orchestra, the RIAS Chamber
Choir, the Berlin Motet Choir
and an all -star cast in perhaps
the most brilliant recording of
his career. Some of the superlative artists included in this
'dream' cast are: Maria Stader
(Pamina), Rita Streich (The
Queen of the Night), Lisa Otto
(Papagena), Ernst Häfliger (Tamino ), Dietrich Fischer -Dieskau ( Papageno), Josef Greindl
(Sarastro) .
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RECORDS
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TURK MURPHY
New Orleans Jazz Festival
Storyville Blues; Just a Closer Walk with Thee;
Memphis Blues; Big Butter and Egg Man;
Floatin' Down to Cotton Town; Canal Street
Blues; Papa Dip; Mecca Flat Blues; Pineapple
Rag; High Society.
Doc Evans, cornet; Turk Murphy, trombone;
Bob Carter, clarinet; Pete Clute, piano; Dick
Lammi, banjo; Thad Wilkerson, drums.
Santo Pecora, trombone, added on Big
Butter and Egg Man and Mecca Flat Blues.
COLUMBIA CL 793. 12 -in. 37 min. $3.98.
The Murphy group on this disk is almost
completely changed from those heard on
his previous recordings. The only holdover
is banjoist Dick Lammi. The big difference
is the presence of Doc Evans, a well- seasoned
and seemingly unquenchable cornetist who
brings to Murphy's band the spark of bright,
clean life that it so often needs. Another
veteran, trombonist Santo Pecora, makes
two brief appearances providing a change
of pace from Murphy's somewhat tedious
trombone style. Pete Clute proves to be an
able ragtiming replacement for Wally Rose,
while Bob Carter shows promise as a clarinetist in the Johnny Dodds vein. It may
be the influence of Evans or the fact that
these are "on location" performances, but
Murphy has rarely led a group on records
that sounds as unfettered and spirited as
this one.
DICK WELLSTOOD
Old Fashioned Love; Mule Walk; Closed Mouth
Blues; The Shout; Toddlin' Home; Alligator
Crawl; Oh, Baby, Watcha Doing to Me; Liza.
Dick Wellstood, piano; Tommy Benford,
drums.
RIVERSIDE RLP 2506. Io -in. 21 min. $3.98.
ILLUSTRATED ANNOTATED LIBRETTO...
bretto will add to your enjoyment of this definitive
recording. Three 12" Long Play Records contain the
entire opera. Recorded in impeccable high fidelity by
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(DX -134; $13.98 °)
-
ago when Mulligan took his revamped
quartet to Europe
Chet Baker out, Bob
Brookmeyer in. The presence of Brookmeyer, a trombonist of subtlety and imagination with an exemplary feeling for jazz,
changed what had been an interesting quartet
into one of the finest of all small jazz groups.
These performances are among the most
completely realized of Mulligan's quartet
recordings. They have style and vitality;
they purr, they bite, and they swing from
the heels. Even Laura, taken at a slow
ballad pace, is prodded so by Mulligan,
urged by Brookmeyer, and pushed along
by Mitchell and Isola that it never drags its
heels. The recording is well above most
concert standards.
Exc. Tax
Dick Wellstood is a young pianist who is
carrying on the James P. Johnson -Fats
Waller piano manner in admirable fashion.
His playing has a looseness and ease not
often found in the work of youngsters who
have immersed themselves in the older jazz
forms. This is largely a matter of genuine
feeling for the music rather than simple
respect or admiration for it. Wellstood appears to have this feeling in plenty as he
shows in his varied playing of Waller's
Alligator Crawl, Johnson's Mule Walk, and
Art Tatum's rousing The Shout. This is
first -rate, unself- conscious use of an essential piano style.
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
HIGH FIDELITY DISCOGRAPHY
BRAHMS
No. 24
The Orchestral Music on Microgroove
by C. G. BURKE
Part
I: Overtures; Symphonies; Serenades.
BRAHMS composed in many forms, but not many works
in any one form, songs and dances excepted. The orchestra
is prescribed in twenty-one compositions, and two- thirds of
these are very much alive in most repertories. Of the rest,
only two have been neglected by the record makers, explorers
who since LP have investigated most of the obscure corners
of music. To compensate the absence of an Ave Maria and
the Song of Triumph, both for chorus and orchestra, there
are recordings of the three ballads, Nanie, Song of the Parcae,
and the Schicksalslied, besides both Serenades and the cantata
Rinaldo, none of which is a succes fou in public performance.
The baker's dozen of other works are standard fare in the
concert hall and abundant on records.
By the pressure of his time and associations Brahms was
a romanticist. His pristine temperament decidedly was not
romantic, and he never acquired those flamboyant vagaries
of mien and demeanor through which the romanticist by
bent and conviction
Schumann, Musset, Heine, Berlioz,
proLiszt, Bryon, Wagner, Shelley, Hoffmann, Novalis
claimed an effort to create a freedom. The wonderful formula
of diatonic classical clarity consummated and exhausted by
Beethoven and Schubert had become a sacred lar dear to
Germania when Brahms started writing in the 1850s, all
composers worshipping it hard in public until they had
gathered enough repute to ignore it. The constrictions of
the Congress of Vienna had made romanticism absolutely
indispensable as a glorious lie to cover the drab machinations
of existence in a horrible epoch. The magnificently ordered
formalism of the preceding period was spiritually odious to
the artistic leaders who for three decades after the Congress
found nothing so hateful as the ordered reaction it had
imposed to repress great aspirations. Wagner was the most
glorious of the musical liars. He fled out of his time to an
irrelevant never -never of strange braveries and preposterous
but not ignoble standards of barbarian chivalry. He made
the remote, the impossible and the unattainable unforgettable,
so that his contemporaries could forget the imminent, the
ordained and the unavoidable.
Although against his grain, but with the grain of the
times, Brahms too might have essayed this had he been
permitted. But while still young he was counterpoised to
Wagner by an influential part of the musical public who
were born when classicism was still vital and representative.
Deploring the changing art of the incipient age of Smoke,
they sought to anchor Brahms to the grandeur of the past
and were in not inconsiderable measure successful. The
composer devoted himself to those forms in which the last
to be at home had been Schubert. He gave his great skill
to the sonata frame, which commenced a new and artificial
life under the stimulus of his prestige and success.
A talent like Brahms's, steered in three directions at once,
encouraged by a cult and strengthened by a consciousness of
virtue, arduously exploited and constantly re- examined, could
-
-
-
not fail to make a unique music. The apologetic and diligent
pulled in this
north -German burgher hugely endowed
direction by the rhapsody of romanticism, pushed in that
direction by a swelling German nationalism which needed a
second Beethoven more orderly than the first, and glued to
proved his
the earth between by an instinct for comfort
amazing neutrality by remaining in measure faithful to all
three influences. The formidable arrivistes of the sudden
Prussian imperialism, needing a propaganda more benign
than the adventures of Holstein, Sadowa, and Sedan and
shuddering at the transcendental disreputability of the Wagner
genius, insisted until the end that Brahms was Beethoven
redivivus, Beethoven having been dead long enough for a
canonization of his rebellions.
Brahms, trying to oblige, distended his talent in applying
it to a kind of music which he could not fundamentally and
independently have felt, at first, was right for him to make.
He had available resources of harmony and orchestration
unknown to the true classicists, and his age permitted a
freedom of shape and modulation which the free part of him
liked to adopt and the part of him fettered to a cause often
felt constrained to reject.
The Brahms symphony, modeled on the Beethoven, is
special and apart. It is a grand musical contrivance constructed
from the heart and the lexicon. It is tougher than the
Beethoven in the sense that it is harder to deface in the
playing. Its lines are not inseparable from its form, and
when the form is stretched or swollen or compressed we
do not hear sense or propriety breached we hear romanticism dominant, and if the players have calculated well we
hear or think we hear improvement. In music which can
be bent and whipped without a wound the conductor can
exercise a dictator's pleasure without wounding himself.
He is shaping something forever indefinite, which may
be speeded or retarded, fattened or attenuated, to produce
passing effects often striking, which do not damage the
whole. The conductor self- intoxicated is of course not long
tolerable anywhere, but the conductor with a large capacity
for exhilaration may profess it publicly in Brahms without
outraging good taste unless he tries to.
A good performance may be at strong variance with
another good performance. That is inherent when form
is not significant. The classic composers of the classic period
are definite even when they say nothing, and we all feel
that their music can be played in one ideally perfect way,
every other way being wrong. The great unabashed and
unadulterated romantics like Wagner and Berlioz, putting
positive emotions in tones, stipulate a positive clarification
from the conductor, and the most successful clarifiers generally
are in accord with one another. The good Brahms conductor
recognizes that, with all their affirmations, the works of
Brahms affirm nothing distinctly identifiable and offer
opportunity for deviation from the literal indications of
APRIL 1956
-
:
97
www.americanradiohistory.com
their scores, a freedom inviting intelligent novelty without
much risk of derision. The standards of performance are
subjective with the hearers and unfixed with them, even
with hearers of large experience. One prefers the last
exciting performance, until one hears the next one, whose
excitement may be opposite.
These considerations have soothed dogmatism in this discography. His own experience has taught the discographer
that predilections for certain performances of this music are
momentary in a manner damaging to strong judgment, for
in a number of instances a predilection has vanished and
then reappeared. In some cases interpretations of contrary
concepts seem equally presentable. Therefore the printed
ordination of the records below reflects a wide tolerance for
imaginative and healthy idioscyncrasy of interpretation as
such, and a severer examination of the relative merits of
the various versions in terms of plain musicianship and sonics.
A note on Brahms's orchestration may not be superfluous.
With Schumann, he has been considered the muddiest, the
most turgid, of scorers among the composers who wrote good
music, and this opinion is not the libel of a cabal. It is,
however, a statement of evaluation with which many musicians do not concur. Indeed the very "turgidity" charms some
conductors, who point out that no one else ever compounded
OVERTURES
ACADEMIC FESTIVAL OVERTURE, OP. 8o
(15 Editions)
This was Brahm's thesis in return for the
doctorate in philosophy conferred by the
University of Breslau in 1879. It is a
clever potpourri on students' tunes, cooked
by a man who was not clever. He was
artful, and the diplomatic ambiguity of
this overture, which may with equal correctness be considered a learned prank or
a good- humored dedication, pleased the
academic audience who first heard it and
has remained in the symphonic repertory
ever since. It is that ambiguity which
makes the score hard to disserve, and
conductors apportion ceremony and circumspect fun without danger of incurring
serious rebuke. The colors do not flash,
although the orchestra is large, and an
able man can inject a variety of nuance
by shifting relative emphases.
The recording conductors differ in detail
of execution, but not very much; and are
in unusual accord on essence. Orchestral
quality and sonics offer a far wider disparity. There is a qualitative gap between
the most substantial sound (Westminster)
aìd the sound next most effective (London) that in terms of reproduction makes
the first the obligatory preference. All the
others are plainly inferior to these two,
and no others reveal a superior command
of skill in the orchestra. The Van Beinum
direction is admirably supple and the
most successful in indicating coloration,
while the hearty force of Sir Adrian Boult's
direction is given added value by the
solidity of the reproduction.
After these two, the newest Walter
edition -much gayer than his old Vienna
Philharmonic performance transferred to
Camden
holds a place much higher
than the remaining versions, although its
sound does not challenge that of the two
similar instrumentation. He was an individual colorist,
these insist, novel in the smokiness of his palette, and unfortunately judged in contrast with the greatest masters of
the eighteenth century, whose smaller and more primitive
orchestra had habituated listeners to easier combinations.
Brahms, a careful scholar of instrumentation, tried to avoid
a mere imitation of his predecessors like Beethoven and
Haydn, and simultaneously to eschew a splendor of scoring
for its own sake like that of Berlioz and Wagner, incompatible with the soberer temperament. He had to hew his
own route in his own fashion. So they say, providing
material for musical discussion.
If we avoid the fighting words, like "muddy," "turgid,"
"distended," etc., we must nevertheless recognize that the
orchestra in Brahms is seldom luminous with daylight or
any other continuous brightness. He chose to compromise the
colors of his instruments by combinations in which gleam
is absorbed by body, light softened by a dark environment.
The brazenness of his brass is modified by union with clarinets
and the lower strings; the plangency of plucked violins is
subdued by a brunette background; he hesitates to loosen
his trumpets without the company of less vivid chaperones;
and his woodwind combinations are often of a curiously
oblique subtlety. It is not an instrumentation that cuts, but
somehow it does impress itself into our memory, and it
is certainly Brahms's own.
a
heavy reproduction is hostile to the playing. The Collingwood record is respectable.
The orchestra in the Gui interpretation
is poorly proportioned or poorly distributed. Sir John Barbirolli, essaying contrast, has permitted too much solemnity.
The sound of several others is notably
artificial or severely deficient in clarity. Etc.
-"Philharmonic Promenade" Orchestra,
Sir Adrian Boult, cond. WESTMINSTER
4401. Four 12 -in. $22.50.
-Same performance.
WESTMINSTER
18035. I2 -in. 54.98 (or 53.98) (with
Rhapsody, Tragic Overture, Haydn Va7i-
ations)..
-Concertgebouw Orchestra, Eduard van
Beinum, cond. LONDON LL 735. 12 -in.
53.98 (with Tragic Overture, Haydn Variations)
-Same performance. LONDON LD 9038.
Io -in. $2.98 (with Tragic Overture).
-New York Philharmonic- Symphony Orchestra, Bruno Walter, cond. COLUMBIA
SL 200. Four 12 -in. $29.90.
.
The rest in comparison are disappointing. Sir Malcolm Sargent has given a
pleasant lilt to his performance, but the
Sir
Malcolm Sargent, cond. COLUMBIA RL
3060. r2 -in. $1.98 (with Tragic Overture
and Wagner: Three Overtures)
-London Symphony Orchestra, Lawrence
Collingwood, cond. M -G -M E 3102. 12 -in.
83.98 (with Tragic Overture; Schumann:
Overture, Scherzo, and Finale).
-Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Paul
van Kempen, cond. DECCA DL 4048.
IO -in.
$2.98 (with Tragic Overture).
-Bamberg Symphony Orchestra, Heinrich
Hollreiser, cond. Vox PL 935o. 12 -in.
$4.98 (with music by Wagner, Sibelius,
.
L_iszt).
-Boston
Symphony Orchestra,
Serge
Koussevitzky, cond. RCA VICTOR LRM
702I. Io -in. $2.98 (with overtures by
Beethoven and Mozart).
-Orchestra of the May Festival (Florence), Vittorio Gui, cond. AUDIOSPHERE
501. 12 -in. $5.95 (with Schubert: Unfinished Symphony; Schumann: Manfred
Overture)
-Utrecht Symphony Orchestra, Paul Hupperts, cond. MUSICAL MASTERPIECE SOCIETY 15.
IO -in. $1.98
(with Haydn
Variations)
-New York Philharmonic- Symphony Orchestra, Sir John Barbirolli, cond. COLUMBIA ML 2075. Io -in. $2.98 (with Smetana: Moldau).
-Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, Bruno
Walter, cond. RCA CAMDEN 242. r 2 -in.
$1.98 (with Tchaikovsky: Serenade for
Strings, and Offenbach: Orpheus in Hell
Overture)
.
.
.
OP. 8r
(ir Editions)
The title of this well -knit narrative piece
( the verbal narrative concealed) has caused
a natural perplexity. The overture is not
"tragic" in the most usual German or
English acceptation of meaning: it is more
spirited than sad, and in sum is cheerful.
But all biography is tragedy to the penetrating eye and expressive mind. It is also
comedy. It is the narrator's privilege to
illumine either face. Death of a Salesman
TRAGIC OVERTURE,
-
leaders.
-Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra,
-Same performance
( but
sound somewhat duller). COLUMBIA AL I. Io -in.
$2.98 ( with Hungarian Dances r, 3, I o,
r7).
98
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
is tragedy made from low- comedy elements,
The Devil's Disciple is comedy made from
tragic elements, and A Streetcar Named
Desire emanates a profound universalism
of tragedy from characters and situations
at basis stridently comic. Brahms's cheerful
overture, built of odds and ends of musical
leftovers, is restlessly depressing in the
memory it leaves.
If one wishes to hear it at its best, the
record of Sir Adrian Boult has incontestable leadership in most of the features
wherein records are estimated. The performance is exceptionally vivid in establishing sharp shapes of mood, and yet it
proceeds at a serenely steady pace within
each chapter. The tautness of construction
is emphasized by the delineated purity of
orchestral sound so impressive in all these
Boult records. The best of the others is
notably a less complete realization than
this version.
Beecham: more relaxed, with darker
sound, smooth but less striking. Convincing
and commendable, but overshadowed.
Walter: the greatest variety of expression;
it slaps and sprawls with the confidence
of skill. It is an arousing display, but
strains the texture. First -class dramatic
reproduction with wide dynamics and assertive timbres. Lehmann: straight performance a little stiff, which imparts belief
and is supplemented by well -nourished
sonics slightly harsh.
Van Beinum: a deft orchestra mechanism, but little color. Kletzki: good humored and indefinite interpretation in
a pleasant registration with an overstuffed
bass but pretty good definition. Mengel berg: vital performance in unruly sound.
Collingwood: casual performance in fair
sound. Reiger: miserable sound.
-"Philharmonic Promenade" Orchestra.
Sir Adrian Boult, cond. WESTMINSTER
18035. 12 -in. $4.98 (or $3.98) (with
Academic Festival Overture; Alto Rhapsody: Haydn Variations).
-Same performance in WESTMINSTER
4401. Four Iz -in. $22.50 ( "Sir Adrian
Boult Conducts Brahms").
-Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Sir
Thomas Beecham, cond. COLUMBIA ML
5029. 12 -in. $3.98 (in Sir Thomas, an
orchestral miscellany).
-New York Philharmonic- Symphony Orchestra, Bruno Walter, cond. COLUMBIA
SL 200. Four 12 -in. $29.90 ( "Orchestral
Music of Brahms").
-Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Fritz
Lehmann, cond. DECCA DL 4048. to -in.
S2.98 ( with Academic Festival Overture)
-Concertgebouw Orchestra, Eduard van
Beinum, cond. LONDON LL 735. 12 -19.
53.98 (with Academic Festival Overture;
Haydn Variations).
-Same performance on LONDON LD 9038.
to -in. $2.98 (with Academic Festival
Overture) .
-Philharmonic Orchestra, Paul Kletzki,
cond. COLUMBIA RL 3060. 12 -in. $1.98
( with Academic Festival
Overture; Wagner: Three Overtures).
-Concertgebouw Orchestra, Willem Men gelberg, cond. CAPITOL P 8078. 12 -in.
$3.98 (with works by Beethoven and
Schubert)
-London Symphony Orchestra, Lawrence
Collingwood, cond. M -G -M 3102. 12 -in.
53.98 (with Academic Festival Overture;
Schumann: Overture, Scherzo, and Finale,
Op. 52).
.
.
-Munich Philharmonic Orchestra,
Fritz
Reiger, cond. MERCURY 15038. lo -in.
$2.98 (with Beethoven: Leonora Overture,
No. 2)
.
SYMPHONIES
Everyone knows them and no one knows
just how they should be played. The
aggregate of some sixty editions for the
tour cannot be so delinquent as not to
include one version of each to give at
least a moderate pleasure to even the
most precious taste. Nearly every admissible style is represented on records, besides a few inadmissible.
Selection is complicated for collectors
by the existence of five complete editions
five sets of records containing the four
symphonies led by one conductor and
sponsored by one company. Columbia has
three of these, including one, Bruno Walter's, containing other orchestral music of
Brahms and available only as a unit.
Westminster's edition with Sir Adrian
Boult as conductor is similar in plan, however vast the difference in style of musical
conveyance. The Toscanini records, now
separately offered, originally comprised a
limited edition. The Weingartner and
Ormandy disks were recorded over a leisurely span of years.
All these have points to be commended,
and the three most recent
Boult, Walter,
and Toscanini
have received consistently
excellent registration, Sir Adrian the most
consistently consistent; not the most dramatic, but the most mellowly glowing.
His edition was the only one to be planned
and executed as an entity, and benefits
from the various homogeneities conferred
by that condition. In the pure light of
this edition's sound the orchestral playing
is peculiarly benign, and the hand of
familiar love is on the direction.
At the other pole are the gypsy ardors
of Dr. Walter and the effulgence of (most
of) the reproduction accorded to the New
York Philharmonic, whose skill in following the conductor's personal and perilous
route wins particular admiration.
The disciplined distinction, the exactitude of clarity, and the aerated architecture
of the Toscanini direction of an orchestra
of etchers make an undistended Brahms of
great appeal to this writer but distasteful
to many serious Brahmsians. Other conductors employ a somewhat similar style
in one or another of the symphonies, but
the Toscanini touch refreshes all four.
The persistent characteristic of the Ormandy records, produced over an extended
period, is the always recognizable marrow
of the orchestra for thirty years the most
distinctive in the world.
Weingartner died too soon to receive
what we would consent now to call good
recording. Students, historians, and others
with special interest in special records will
examine the poised direction of his Brahms
with admiration and regret. Weingartner
could imply vastness without being loud,
and had a wonderful talent for maintaining
a natural grace free of daintiness.
But
today's collectors require a quality of sound
not dreamed of in the remote age when
his records were made.
No complete edition yet recorded of
a standard series, like the Brahms symphonies, has been able to dominate all
-
-
-
APRIL 1956
the individual competitors for preference.
Three such editions here have credentials
far superior to most. In two- the Walter
and the Boult
the components cannot be
obtained separately. If one wishes the
Toscanini Second and Third
and it is
hard not so to wish
one does not now
have to buy two extra disks to have
them, as one must to have the Walter First
and Fourth. The Boult case has its special
problem for collectors, in that there is
something symphonic, correlated, and inseparable in his presentations, which are
bound into one by the constant action of
a sort of transfigured rectitude, nothing
being novel or extreme, but nearly everything being realized with a confident regularity of routine flowing with meaning.
Insatiate Brahmsians who would like the
four symphonies and the Tragic Overture
in a row will find a continuity of gravely
lofty style in Sir Adrian's procession more
appropriate than any other style to such
an enormity of appetite.
The Walter edition is called "Orchestral
Music of Brahms," four records in automatic sequence enclosed in a heavy album
with notes and photographs. Besides the
four symphonies, the album contains the
two overtures, the Variations on a Theme
by Haydn, and four Hungarian Dances.
The Fourth Symphony, the Academic Festival Overture, and the Hungarian Dances
can be obtained in the same performances
on other Columbia records.
The Boult edition, four records in a
substantial album with notes and photographs, includes the same music except for
the substitution of the Alto Rhapsody for
the Hungarian Dances. The sequence of
sides is for operation without a changer,
each symphony occupying a disk whose reverse is filled by one of the shorter works
appended to the symphony's finale. These
shorter works also occupy both sides of a
record extracted from the complete edition,
but none of the symphonies is available as
yet in dissociation from the album.
-
- -
SYMPHONY NO. 1, IN C MINOR, OP. 68
(22 Editions)
No need, and no space, for a synopsis of
its features. Brahms agonized over it for
nearly fifteen years, and its stolid ecstasies
eighty years after his release from the travail of delivery are more esteemed than
they have ever been. It is an old coat
that will not wear out in spite of all the
efforts of conductors to stretch or shrink it
to their personal dimensions. The spate of
recorded editions guarantees variety, and
the first four listed below, considered the
outstanding records, are each an imposing
example of a different manner. Substantial
cause can be found for giving first preference to any of these, and the writer
urges that the indicated sequence be accepted rather as a strong recommendation
of four rather than as a relegation of three.
It must also be said that the Von Karajan
and Cantelli versions immediately following are of a general excellence very little
inferior. The six editions are clearly the
cream to be separated.
No doubt the passionate individualism
of the Walter projection will excite dissent
from its high estimate here. Nevertheless
this hot romanticism does not rely on
eccentricities for its hypodermic of excitement, unless the rare pace of the trio in
99
www.americanradiohistory.com
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RECORD REVIEWS
for
1954
available
NOW
A complete index, alphabetical
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record reviews contained in
HIGH FIDELITY Magazine
during 1954. Discographies inA "must" reference.
cluded.
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1954 Index
O
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the poco allegretto be accounted an eccentricity. Except in the andante, a luxuriant
bath in deeply flowing lava, the orchestra
is driven hard, with small deviations from
literalism and marked urgency in the
interjections of sudden force; and never
on a disk has this orchestra responded to
difficult commands with a readier unanimity of skill. Nor have its Apps been more
securely caught by the engineers, its
timbres more decisively enunciated, the
gloss of its violins more tenderly preserved.
The cumulative effect is one of striding
splendor.
The Boult version, abounding in less
conspicuous felicities, stalwart and symmetrical, ought to delight everyone repelled by Dr. Walter's ebullience. Orderliness does not preclude a fine metrical
snap in the first movement or a sweet
relaxation in the third. The pure, resilient
reproduction permits the orchestra an ingratiation of tonal appeal beyond the
evidence of the other records. The proportioned clarity of subsidiary details is a
credit equally to Sir Adrian and the Westminster engineers. No surprises in this
version unless so much excellence be
it takes the Symphony along the most
direct of roads, but loses none of its
equipment in the journey.
Vastly hearty in direction and carried
by the fattest sound, the Van Beinum
record billows purposeful strength in a
broad straight path to leave the most
telling proclamation of the major lines,
the expected shape, of the Symphony. The
assured finesse of the orchestra is directed
more at the creation of smooth blocks than
at elaboration of episode. The sweeping
reproduction, huge in volume, gives good
articulation to the strings and allows memorable vibrant color to the winds. Metallic
shimmer may be expected from the violins
if reproducers are not equipped with resourceful controls.
Forceful and curt, with sharp, dramatic
sforzati and the cleanest stroke, the Toscanini disk presents the Symphony younger
and fresher than usual. The beautiful cantabile of the violins makes the andante
something of special value, and the coda
of the finale blazes in a glory of regimented flames. Distinctive and bright
sonics best at good volume, a little coarse
in the first movement, imposing in all the
wind instruments throughout.
Both leading the Philharmonia Orchestra, but to very different results, Messrs.
Von Karajan and Cantelli make beautiful
performances, the first from a dark, the
second from a light, palette of orchestral
colors. The first proceeds with stately foot
steadily towards a finality of majesty not
completely realized by a generally accurate
and spreading sound a trifle lacking in
force. The Cantelli tread is also measured,
but an orchestral fabric brightened by
in
bringing out the higher instruments
interesting combination with strong drums
makes an airier progress. Spacious,
realistic, pleasing sound.
Below these, greater or more faults of
one kind or another are increasingly noticeable. In cavalier summation regrettably
unfair in its brevity to a lot of good
musicianship, here are some features:
Wallenstein, bold and decided performance
in pretty good sound with neat strings, fair
discrimination, and indifferent articulation.
-
-
-
Keilberth, rich finale, nice nuance in broad
mass, swollen andante, rather sticky allegretto, big sound with easy string -tone,
and contrapuntally transparent. There is
a point of bad splicing, quickly forgotten.
The same tape was used less effectively for
an old Capitol now withdrawn. Scherchen,
straight, carefully drawn interpretation of
obvious merit, but violins shrill in reproduction. Leinsdorf, very honorable in
tempos and stresses, orchestra graciously
pliant, satisfactory sonics at high volume.
Ormandy, plodding interludes, grand coda,
meritorious sound here and there coarse.
Kubelik, rather smug first movement,
very gracious allegretto, brave finale, violin
trouble on the first side, much better reproduction on the reverse. Rodzinski, alert
and imaginative, with bright and difficult
sound obtuse in the bass. Van Otterloo,
risky, highly calculated interpretation overdrawn in contrasts, intimate and delightful
allegretto, heavy sound excellent at its
best, but with different volume and characteristic for the two sides. Brown, consistently neither stiff nor fluent but in
spasms both, strong sound of orchestra in
dubious balance. Page binaural, most
effective of all in restating the orchestra,
but the orchestra states less a logically -dicrated flow of music than a few changes
of posture. Weingartner, the resilient
strength and natural grace are compromised too severely by the aged sound.
The remainder will rest more peacefully
without comment.
-New York Philharmonic- Symphony Orchestra, Bruno Walter, cond. COLUMBIA
$29.90 ( "Orchestral
SL 200. Four z2 -in.
Music of Brahms") .
-"Philharmonic Promenade" Orchestra,
Sir Adrian Boult, cond. WESTMINSTER
4401. Four z2 -in. $22.50. ( "Sir Adrian
Boult Conducts Brahms ") .
-Concertgebouw Orchestra, Eduard van
Beinum, cond. LONDON LL 49o. 12 -in.
$3.98.
-NBC Orchestra, Arturo Toscanini, cond.
RCA VICTOR LM 1702. 12 -in. $3.98.
-Philharmonia Orchestra, Herbert von
Karajan, cond. ANGEL 35001. 12 -in. $4.98
(or $3.48).
-Philharmonia Orchestra, Guido Cantelli,
cond. RCA VICTOR LHMV 1054. z 2 -in.
$4.98.
-Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra,
Alfred Wallenstein, cond. DECCA DL 9603.
12 -in. $3.98.
-Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Joseph
LGX
Keilberth,
cond.
TELEFUNKEN
66003. 12 -in. $4.98.
-(Same performance on an old disk withdrawn by Capitol was sonically less effective.)
-Orchestra of the Vienna Staatsoper, Herman Scherchen, cond. WESTMINSTER
5189. 12 -In. $2.99.
-Robin Hood Dell Orchestra of Philadelphia, Erich Leinsdorf, cond. RCA
VICTOR LBC 1004. 12 -in. $2.98.
-Philadelphia Orchestra, Eugene Ormandy, cond. COLUMBIA ML 4477. 12 -in.
$3.98.
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
100
www.americanradiohistory.com
-Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Rafael
Kubelik, cond. MERCURY 50007. r2-in.
$3.98.
-New York Philharmonic- Symphony Orchestra, Artur Rodzinski, cond. COLUMBIA
RL 3117. I2 -in. $1.98.
-(Identical product formerly on retired
COLUMBIA ML 4016.)
-Hague Philharmonic Orchestra, Willem
van Otterloo, cond. EPIC LC 3155. 12 -in.
$3.98.
Vienna Orchestra, H. Arthur Brown,
cond. REMINGTON 199-5. 12 -in. $1.98.
-"New Orchestral Society of Boston,"
Willis Page, cond. COOK (binaural)
ro6o. Two 12 -in. $8.95.
-London Symphony Orchestra, Felix
Weingartner, cond. COLUMBIA ML 4510.
12 -in. $3.98.
-Hollywood Bowl Symphony Orchestra,
-A
Leopold Stokowski, cond. RCA VICTOR
LM 1070. 12 -in. $3.98.
-"New Orchestral Society of Boston,"
Willis Page, cond. COOK (standard)
ro6o. r2 -in. $4.98.
-Philadelphia Orchestra, Leopold Stokowski, cond. RCA CAMDEN CAL 105. 12 -in.
$1.98.
SYMPHONY NO. 2, IN D, OP. 73
(r6
Editions)
The Second and Third Symphonies are
ambiguously built. Are they heavy frames
with an abundance of frivolous excursions,
or are they light architecture precarious
with weighted ornaments? A good preponderance of opinion favors the Second
in carefree guise, but there are dissenters,
including some among the conductors, the
majority of whom are in fact inclined to
take the conflicts as they come, without
attempting to change the balance in favor
of a dogmatic plan. No one will agree
on an inherence of meaning, and the
result is a multiple divergence of direction
in the recorded editions.
Some thirty hours of listening instilled
the conviction, however, that the Symphony sounds best when given all the
buoyancy possible, by lightening the harmonies, giving voice to the high instruments, keeping the allegro phrases short,
and flicking the accent. In general this is
what we hear in the Toscanini version,
plus silky violins, limpid lyricism in the
slow movement, full chords like whiplashes, and an unhesitant advance which
belittles a presumption that there could
be another way. Since the sound given
to this importance is thorough, nowhere
frayed, and remarkable for its vivid evidence of the presence of all instruments,
the record is recommended above all others.
In preparing this survey, the discographer was helped immeasurably by the
occasional sudden apparition of the involuntary or
incredulous grin.
In
obedience to this signal an immediate and
automatic demotion was effected. Thus
Dr. Walter's headlong rush to nowhere,
in the finale
after a good deal of disheartening
thrashing -about
earlier
evoked the grin, and down went his record.
The grin was wrier at the portentous
futility of Furtwängler treading water, and
hilarious at the flustered hurry of Sir John
Barbirolli. (Weingartner plays as fast in
a performance alive with light and grace).
The grin extorted by the Schuricht record
was thoughtful, for that version in its way
-
-
Is able and honorable. But the full harmonies, the enormous sound, a romantic
looseness, and the Vienna Philharmonic
echo make it awfully serious.
The Boult disk is much closer in merit
to the Toscanini than any of the rest to
the Boult. Performance and sonics are of
exquisite delineation, and episodic refinements recur with a frequency causing one
to inquire how long Sir Adrian has had
this gift of delicacy. His strength has long
been known and is plentifully apparent
here, but this discrimination of tone, this
superfine calculation of the dynamic gradient, have not previously been notable
in our phonographic experience of him,
which indeed left an impression of bluffness. Genial and manly his Brahms certainly is, as it was, but the polish of
sophistication re- enforces its command of
its hearers.
It is difficult to hear in the remaining versions merits comparable to those
of the Toscanini and Boult editions. Here
briefly are some notes on the better ones:
The last two movements of the Monteux
flourish a puckish animation after a duller
start, leaving a gay impression. Competent
sound although pretty old. The Weingartner performance is dulcet, mobile, sensitive, and smiling. With new sound it
could not be resisted, but what it has
suffices to convey the line and some of the
texture of an endearing interpretation.
The mass is in fact rather compelling, but
details are blunt and the climaxes incomplete. From Dr. Rodzinski we hear
one of those finely- adjusted essays for
which he ought to be more renowned,
stating an energetic and sparkling re -creation, recorded close -to sound both impressive and distorted, the latter in overbold passages.
Mengelberg. The old disk has been
retired, but it is far from the poorest of
this lot, with a decided beat emphasizing
a bright vitality and brass timbre of high
appeal in sonics otherwise showing wear.
Van Beinum. Big and square. Clear,
hard sound of good definition will need
careful reduction of its treble. Ormandy.
Beautiful episodes amidst a delivery sounding at once offhand and pretentious. Jochum. Sensitively wrought but disturbed
by high instruments shrill, and low instruments murky. Wolf. Comfortable performance except for a few bad moments
with winds. Overbright treble, and echo
oppresses details.
-NBC Orchestra, Arturo Toscanini, cond.
RCA VICTOR LM 1731. 12 -in. $3.98.
-"Philharmonic Promenade"
Orchestra,
a
^
PHONOTAPES SONORE
Recorded
tapes at their best!
"STUNNING SOUND!"
RAVEL:
Bolero; Alborada del Gracioso; Pavane;
La Valse; Rapsodie Espagnole
Paris Radio Symphony Orchestra,
René Leibowitz, conductor
PM 107
dual- $8.95;
71
33/4
dual -$6.95
"Almost a complete hour of Ravel on one
reel . .
enhanced by virtue of its stunning sound. Surely the Bolero is prime
demonstration footage for anyone mulling
tape purchase
."
THE BILLBOARD
.
..
MOZART:
Piano Concerto No. 20 in D minor, K. 466
Sondra Bianca, piano;
Pro Musica Symphony Orchestra of Hamburg,
Hans Jurgen- Walther, conductor
PM 5003
71/2
"Listening to
dual -$6.95; 33/4 dual -$4.95
group of recent Phonotapes releases, one was struck by their
a
...
general superiority
Tonally speaking,
a tape of Mozart's Piano Concerto in D
minor, played by Sondra Bianca, is really
excellent. The piano tone is firm and
clear, the balance with orchestra is good,
and the sound of the orchestra has been
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THE NEW YORK TIMES
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Sir Adrian Boult, cond. WESTMINSTER
4401. Four 12 -in. $22.50 ( "Sir Adrian
Boult Conducts Brahms").
-San Francisco Symphony Orchestra,
Pierre Monteux, cond. RCA VICTOR LM
r173. 12 -in. $3.98.
-London Symphony Orchestra, Felix
Weingartner, cond. COLUMBIA ML 4511.
12 -in. $3.98.
-New York Philharmonic- Symphony Orchestra, Artur Rodzinski, cond. COLUMBIA
ML 4068. 12 -in. $3.98.
-Concertgebouw Orchestra, Willem Men gelberg, cond. CAPITOL P 807o. 12 -in.
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-New
York Philharmonic- Symphony Orchestra, Bruno Walter, cond. COLUMBIA
SL 200. Four 12 -in. $29.90 ( "Orchestral
Music of Brahms ") .
-Philadelphia Orchestra, Eugene Ormandy, cond. COLUMBIA ML 4827. 12 -in.
$ 3.98.
-Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Eugen
Jochum, cond. DECCA DL 9556. r2 -in.
$3.98.
-Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, Carl
Schuricht, cond. LONDON LL 867. 12 -in.
$3.98.
-"Austrian" Symphony Orchestra, Hans
Wolf, cond. REMINGTON 199-19. r2 -in.
$1.95-Orchestra of the May Festival, Florence,
Vittorio Gui, cond. TEMPO 2074. 12 -in.
$ 5.07.
-"Claridge" Symphony Orchestra. CAMDEN CAL 236. 12 -in. $1.98.
-London Philharmonic Orchestra, Wilhelm Furtwängler, cond. LONDON LLP 28.
12 -in. $3.98.
-New York Philharmonic- Symphony Orchestra, Sir John Barbirolli, cond. COLUMBIA RL 3044. 12 -in. $1.98.
"Rescued
From
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-N.
Y. Herald Tribune
Two HANDEL
Masterpieces
tiOSAKMF.
Alfred Deller
with Soloists,
Chorus and
Orch. cond. by
Anthony Lewis.
(free libretto)
3.12"
OL 50091/3-514
94
"'Sosarme' should cause
a good deal
of excitement
L'Oiseau -Lyre has assembled o brilliant cast." -N. Y. TIMES
...
"It is for and away the best complete
recording of a Handel opera."
-SATURDAY REVIEW
"A warm, fresh and flaming score ..
intense and vibrant music."
.
-N.
Y. HERALD TRIBUNE
SEMELE
- (complete)
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and Orch.
cond. by Anthony Lewis.
(free libretto)
3 -12"
01.50098/100-$14.94
" ' Semele' constantly fountains musical inspiration ...sung with power and
vocal beauty."
-SATURDAY REVIEW
"The work abounds in subtly beauti-
ful things, and also in very positive and
striking numbers." -THE GRAMOPHONE
"A brilliant cast
...
each sings
the
famous arias with clarity and grace."
-N.
Y. TIMES
EDITIONS DE
L'OISEAU-LYRE
LONDON
INTERNATIONAL, INC.
539 W. 25th St. New York
1,
N. Y.
(14
Editions)
The very elastic personality of the
Third Symphony is illuminated by the
characterizing adjectives it has harvested.
Two are enough, "heroic" and "confessional." It is hard to earn both descriptions
by the same performance, but in the different performances recorded each can
be applied to several examples. Long sections of the first three movements are
scored to permit a style of enlarged chamber music, and these sections are often so
played.
Contrarily some conductors
Koussevitzky and George Szell, for instance
maintain a big symphonic surge wherever that is possible. Both ways are effective, and a good pronouncement of one
seems as righteous as a good showing in
the other.
In consequence of such considerations,
three editions of different aspect have obtained an equal preference. Naturally the
orchestral refinement worked by Sir Adrian
Boult and described under the preceding
symphonies is of apposite value here;
not that one is to imagine that this conductor is deficient in aggressiveness. His is
an even -paced strongly accented performance of transparent instrumental clarity,
which illumines the chamber-music semblances without their being underlined
in pale ink. The performance is inseparable from the delicate poise of the
sonics, suggesting that conductor and engineers had reconnoitered thoroughly before opening fire.
The finesse in the Szell performance
is in the establishment and maintenance
of a powerful symphonic whole. The
chamber music here is confined to the third
movement, where it is inherent. Elsewhere
all is solid muscle under admirable control,
registered to rare effect in that the great
SYMPHONY NO. 3, IN F, OP. 90
- (complete)
-
-
rushes of sound are clean down low and
bright above. Heavy bass like this is
seldom so well articulated. It is impossible
to say which of three is the best version,
but this is the most arresting.
Another bright and dynamic but not
perfervid interpretation gives a Toscanini
record high place for the third time.
-
the bright verThe glints are familiar
tical adjustment, the violins somehow terrorized into sounding like one mercurial
in
instrument, the chordal unification
an interpretation remarkable for its affirmation without any demur of the dual implications of the big -little score. As a
result there are quick dramatic transferences from the painting of miniatures
to the firing of broadsides, an alternation
of extremes warranted to maintain interest.
The performance has encountered wide
opposition from those who cherish a
hypothesis on the meaning of this Symphony, and this is part of a fairly common
opinion that the conductor perverts
Brahms. The feeling here is that the
Toscanini treatment, in all the Brahms he
has undertaken, is fresh and enlightening;
and of course anything intelligent is "controversial." The singular cohesion and life
of the orchestra will not be disputed, nor
the admirable reproduction.
The soft hand of Karl Böhm contrives
a moving lyricism in the andante and is
not tolerant to the extent of weakening;
the finale. The other movements are blunt
in accent and wear full harmonic dress
emphasized by meaty registration.
One must hear the Barbirolli version
through before one can admire its patient
planning
three degrees of prayer answered by a gush of rejoicing. In mellowly
assimilable sound this is laudable but a
little trying until the final breeze blows
away the incense of the third movement,
which seems interminable. This and the
Ackermann record are the bargains, the
latter having a special appeal in the bold
statement of the wind instruments, with
rich horn -timbre and good throat in the
woods. The performance is direct and
circumspect without much shading, but
in no other disk does the brass in the
finale emerge as it should.
The others are less than wonderful, a
number suffering from ailing sound and
several from overstriving interpretations.
The Weingartner, Stock, Abendroth, and
Gui performances are in unequal degree
commendable and their sonics are inadequate. Mr. Ormandy, heated in the first
movement, is not dull, and fusses with his
beautiful strings athletically in the andante
and finale. With the help of first -class
reproduction Dr. Walter muses attractively
during the first two movements and erases
a good impression by a finale of apoplectic
excitation rather embarrassing to hear. If
the late Serge Koussevitzky had stopped
after the clean eloquence of his delivery
of the first movement
but the rest is
maudlin or florid or clamorous. The
Stokowski record, originally inscribed
nearly thirty years ago, is tubby in the
bass and glassy in the treble, without much
discernible quality between.
-"Philharmonic Promenade" Orchestra,
Sir Adrian Boult, cond. WESTMINSTER
440E. Four 12 -in. $22.50 ( "Sir Adrian
Boult Conducts Brahms").
-Concertgebouw Orchestra, George Szell,
cond. LONDON LL 487. I2 -in. $3.98.
-NBC Orchestra, Arturo Toscanini, cond.
RCA VICTOR LM 1836. 12 -in. $3.98.
-Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, Karl
Böhm, cond. LONDON LL 857. 12 -in.
$3.98-Hallé Orchestra (Manchester), Sir John
Barbirolli, cond. RCA VICTOR LBC 5042.
12 -in. $2.98.
-
-
-
!
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-Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra, Otto
AckerMASTERPIECE.
MUSICAL
cond.
SOCIETY 28. lo -in. $1.98.
-New York Philharmonic- Symphony Orchestra, Bruno Walter, cond. COLUMBIA
SL 200.
Four 12 -in. $29.90 ( "Orchestral
Music of Brahms ").
-London Philharmonic Orchestra, Felix
Weingartner, cond. COLUMBIA, ML 4512.
12 -in. $3.98.
-Philadelphia Orchestra. Eugene Ormandy, cond. COLUMBIA ML 4088. 12 -in.
53.98.
-Boston Symphony Orchestra. Serge
Koussevitzky, cond. RCA VICTOR LM
1025. 12 -in. $3.98.
-Orchestra of Radio Leipzig, Hermann
Abendroth, cond. URANIA 7 -5. r2 -in.
$ 3.98.
-Orchestra of the May Festival (Florence) , Vittorio Gui, cond. TEMPO 2040.
I2 -in. $5.07.
-Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Frederick
Stock, cond. COLUMBIA RL 3013. $1.98.
-Philadelphia Orchestra, Leopold Stokowski, cond. RCA CAMDEN CAL 164. 12-in.
$ 1.98.
mann,
No. 4, IN E MINOR, OP. 98
114 Editions)
Invariably those who study Brahms thoroughly conclude that the Fourth is the
SYMPHONY
greatest of his symphonies. The presence
of a true scherzo in place of the wispy
allegretto grazioso interludes in the preceding symphonies has some natural influence on this conclusion, to which also
a pungency of thematic material snugly
elaborated contributes considerably. Conductors, by prudent instinct, draw in their
USE
RID YO'
of
RECORDS
projections of wayward temperament when
essaying the score; and the good ones try
not to moderate but to fulfill this peculiarly
passionate declaration of austerity. In the
recorded editions some conceits can be
heard, some extravagances, and of course
some ingrown mannerisms, but few inordinate, none repellent.
The records may be divided without
strain into three groups of which the
lowest contains only four examples, all
suffering from grief -giving sound. The
highest contains four disks of three performances. These are estimated to hold the
greatest appeal in union of performance
and sonics. The intermediate group of six
are a praiseworthy array less remarkable
than the highest.
No lenity was exercised to reach such
a large proportion of acceptable versions.
The results were dictated by the evidence
of the records, and congratulations are the
lot of the manufacturers. However, frankness insists on the admission that notes
taken in relation to this Symphony show
that no fewer than four versions have
had a temporary absolute verdict of leadership. These are the Walter, Toscanini,
Boult, and Paray records. The notes also
show that each of the first three has been
able to reoccupy the position of first esteem
after having been ejected. It is still that
way. Each can prevail over the others.
according to which special feature has for
the moment the ascendant appeal. The
latest order is Walter, Boult, Toscanini.
While each is true to the general manner thoroughly demonstrated in the first
three symphonies, there are some deviations
from what could with reason be expected.
,
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The Walter fervor is not in short supply,
nor the range of expression and force,
but they are not in surfeit and they are
in place. The phrase is held long and the
harmony is deep. The registration, catching a vast expanse of emotional sound
without disorder, is the most arresting
although not necessarily the best
of all,
in its bulk and the nicety of its definition
of color within the bulk.
Sir Adrian, whose tread leans to deliberation in most places, speeds the andante,
after a first movement of graduated growth
culminating in a stunning coda, forward
with regard to the warning moderato affixed by the composer, yet without reduction of the mystery usually obtained by
more leisurely strokes. As usual, his interpretation gains by a purity of (smaller)
sound not equaled in another version,
and as usual the steady forcefulness of his
work is embellished by the evidence of
details slurred by the other orchestras or
the other engineers.
The adjectives used to describe Mr.
Toscanini's Brahms must serve again:
luminous, exact, cohesive, incisive. It is
important to note that other adjectives
associated with the conductor
"imperious," "hard," "precipitate"
are alien
to his direction of Brahms, where in fact
his lyric line is as sinuous as any man's
although slenderer than most. Rather upsetting to preconceptions is the rousing
good-humor in the rustic sport of the
scherzo. The vivid exposition of the
final passacaglia and the lightning flashes
of the coda are more easily imagined.
Reproduction, fresh and living, will be
most imposing with fairly high volume.
The Paray production is continuously
burly and disdainful of finesse in its
pile- driving strokes. It is a salute to
power that seldom in this close recording
falls to a true piano,
which seems to
be because the conductor has willed it so.
The confident tramp, impatient of the
gentleness of the andante and the whimsical alleviations of the scherzo, manages
to keep a rough vigor dominant everywhere and not preposterous, leading to a
culmination of tiered brasses in the finale
sounded with a sensational and shattering
accuracy. It is unblushing blatancy in art,
but so is Tamburlaine the Great, still
alive in spite of epithets. Both, however, are weak in that subsequent performances vitiate the effect of the first.
The record is overloaded with treble, which
most good apparatus can subdue without
Conn.
--
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.1110100',,....
difficulty.
the finest in
pre -recorded
tapes.
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CORPORATION
Madison Ave.
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185
The individuality of the interpretation
led by Victor de Sabata is equally apparent,
altogether opposite, and probably much
more durable. The first movement is exposed with a sensitive, poetic craft reticent of force and insinuating with grace,
the latter property endowing the andante,
diminished in breadth, with an easy
fluency enhanced by strings beautifully
singing. The scherzo too is given out
with a supple suavity not customary. The
finale is nervous, unsettled, a battle hard
to assess. The rather old sound has some
obscurities, but sweet violins and glowing
brass are a redemption of more significance
than the elision of some woodwind
timbres.
The Krips and Bernstein editions are
excellent products, the former exhibiting
the best Krips, which is lyrical, and an-
104
other Krips, masculine and aspiring, of
less common occurrence. For all its age the
sonics are hearty and define the instruments
well. There is some intermittent hum.
The record is less dramatic than the
Bernstein, which in addition has a
smoother registration of strings, but it has
a superior clarification of subsidiary elements and a smoother response from the
orchestra.
A virile and nervous performance comes
from Boston in a recording of good values
especially in the characterization of the
choirs. It is a pity that an unlikely over prominence of the woodwinds was permitted to disarrange the deep gloss of the
orchestra. This kind of fault is much
more serious when applied to an organization like the Boston Symphony than
to a lesser band, which it might in fact
improve, if the winds were good and
the rest less good.
The Philadelphia version, on one of
those early LPs that surprise by their
show of merit in the midst of more
recent glories, wins attention by the richly
sensuous enticements of a great virtuoso
orchestra. The string playing is so exuberantly voluptuous that it distracts the mind
from more serious things, as if an odalisque
generously bare were descanting on the
state of the Union. Not only the strings
the woods are commensurate, and one
will hear the celebrated flutist fashioning
a sound as plump and succulent as a
sausage. A vigorous performance withal,
if loose; and if the conductor seems a
little intoxicated with the united gorgeousness of his minions, that is proof of no
more than humanity.
-New York Philharmonic- Symphony Orchestra, Bruno Walter, cond. COLUMBIA
SL 200. Four 12 -in. $29.90 ( "Orchestral
Music of Brahms ").
-Same performance on COLUMBIA ML
4472. 12 -in. $3.98.
-
-"Philharmonic
Promenade" Orchestra,
Adrian Boult, cond. WESTMINSTER
4401. Four 12 -in. $22.50 ( "Sir Adrian
Boult Conducts Brahms ").
-NBC Orchestra, Arturo Toscanini,
Sir
cond. RCA VICTOR LM 1713. 12 -in.
$3.98.
-Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Paul Paray,
cond. MERCURY 50057. 12 -in. $3.98.
-Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Victor
de Sabata, cond. DECCA DL 9516. 12 -in.
$ 3.98.
-London Symphony Orchestra, Josef
Krips, cond. LONDON LL 208 12 -in.
$3.98.
-Stadium Concerts Orchestra (New
York), Leonard Bernstein, cond. DECCA
DL 9717. 12 -in. $3.98.
-Boston Symphony Orchestra, Charles
Munch, cond. RCA VICTOR LM 1086.
12 -in. $i.98.
-Philadelphia Orchestra, Eugene Ormandy, cond. COLUMBIA ML 4017. 12 -in.
$ 3.98.
-London Symphony Orchestra, Felix
Weingartner, cond. COLUMBIA ML 4513.
12 -in. $3.98.
-"Austrian" Symphony Orchestra, Kurt
Wöss, cond. REMINGTON 199 -42. 12 -in.
$1.95.
-Orchestra of Radio Berlin, Arthur
Rother, cond. URANIA RS 7 -14. 12 -in.
$3.98.
-BBC Orchestra, Bruno Walter, cond.
RCA CAMDEN CAL 246. 12 -in. $1.98.
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(
Editions)
Was originally a nonet, and its chamber
music character is easily apparent in the
expansion to orchestral scoring. Modeled
on the serenades of the classical composers
of the century preceding its own, it parades
six movements contrasting in speed, meter,
so great was
and temper, including
Brahms's respect for traditional classicism
a minuet and trio. Neat tunes, studied
with amusing coloration
i nstrumentation
from the woodwinds, and varied harmony
usually a little less lightsome than the
air or rhythm it decorates, give a curiously
spongy, a uniquely diverting incongruity
something like fashionable
of charm
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The records do not permit quick categorical classification. The mellowest performance and the one likely to appeal most
is the Heger, in delapidated old sonics.
Fluent and deft, at ease, the Swoboda interpretation would be better served by a
registration less raw; for although this
sound does not hurt, it nowhere sings,
and an adaptation to artificiality of tone
is required of the listener. Decca has presented to Mr. Scherman a competent sound
of decent if not remarkable values, in fair
compensation to the conductor most in
need of it, but confusing to the collector
who would prefer a less symphonic, more
genial and undulant style of play.
-Concert Hall Symphony Orchestra,
Henry Swoboda, cond. CONCERT HALL
1087. 12 -in. $4.98.
-Little Orchestra Society, New York,
Thomas Scherman, cond. DECCA DL 9651.
12 -in. $3.98.
-Bamberg Symphony Orchestra, Robert
Heger, cond. MERCURY 10076. 12 -in.
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damage, while in transit.
*
Every record is carefully packed, to
reach you in absolutely perfect
condition.
*
Every order over $6.00 is mailed
POSTAGE FREE anywhere in
the U. S. A. On orders of less than
$6.00, please add 400 to cover mailing charges.
*
Our service is fast, prompt and
courteous.
*
All records are sold
*
We can supply you with any LP,
on any label, IF it is currently
(
Edition)
The same lexicon of description fits the
two Serenades. The second is jointed a
little more delicately, and must not be
played big. The big orchestral treatment
of the Concertgebouw would be alien to
a score warning of its preoccupation with
small, dim nuances by vacant staves in
the violin's location. The visiting Italian
conductor (or the recording engineers)
relapses into comfortable bigness briefly
at two points, and then recalls himself to
the soft business of restraining his experts
within
particularly those playing reeds
dispassionate bounds. To this writer, the
Second Serenade is even more agreeable
than the First, and the one record of the
Second, in its sophisticated playing and
modern sound, is worth the three of the
First with their virtues added and their
sins condoned. But if the volume is not
-
GIBSON GIRL TAPE SPLICERS
No. 2, IN A,
EVERY WEEK
at the manufacturer's suggested list price only.
available.
*
THE MUSIC BOX is devoted to
mail orders exclusively. The general public do not have any access
to our stock, which is handled only
by two people.
*
When ordering, simply list the
records needed, plus your check or
money order to cover their cost. To
avoid delay, list substitutes, since
we will never make substitutions,
without your written permission.
no C. O. D.'s.
Sorry
:..
I'
tok
MAIN
Brahms Orchestral Discography will
be concluded in a future issue.
STREET
GREAT BARRINGTON, MASS.
105
APRIL 1956
www.americanradiohistory.com
NEW
series 20
CONCERTONE
CUSTOM
TAPE
RECORDER
Now an improved model of the famous
Concertone tape recorder...personal choice
of leading audio manufacturers
. and the
first choice of audiophiles too.
.
only tape recorder with all these features
3 HEADS
--for instantaneous
monitoring from the tape
while recording. Space for 2
extra heads allows modifications to sound on sound,
stereo recording, echo effects and delayed broadcast
playback while simultaneously recording new signal.
ALL REEL SIZES UP TO 101/2
INCHES --only popular priced
truly high fidelity recorder
with this feature. No adaptnecessary. Record and
playback up to
hours of
uninterrupted music... complete programs at 7.5 ips.
ers
i!
TEST FADER -compare
original sound with recorded
sound while making record
ing.'Set record level separately from playback level
41
A -8
using
2
different control
knobs. Permits accurate
comparison.
CUEING AND EDITING - sim-
plest, fastest, most accurate
means of locating tape at
exact desired spot, splicing
in desired sections, cutting
out undesirable sound.
SIGNAL LEVEL METER
-
eliminates guesswork in reby accurately
measuring input signal and
output signal. Reduces distortion due to over- modulation. Measures bias level to
cording
insure proper operation.
plus these new features
Complete restyling of all models accentuating functional beauty
&fattce_te
Audio Division of American Electronics, Inc.
655 West Washington Blvd., Los Angeles 15, Calif.
For industrial requirements consult Recordata Division
4 -A
New speed change switch
guides
New tape damper assembly with
New tape guide bracket
Tape transport pre-drilled
for stereo and sync pulse adaptations.
NOW- choice of 9 all -new models: Full or Half- Track, Stereo, sound -on
sound or playback only. All models available for custom installation, in
handsome hardwood cabinets or in newly styled carrying cases. Matching
cabinets and carrying cases also available for the new Concertone
amplifier- speaker playback system. All playback equipment has been
especially designed to be used with Concertone recorders for a true high
fidelity complete tape home music system. See your Concertone distributor
for a demonstration of the new models.
[o6
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
TESTW
I W 1PHE 140M E
Equipment reports appearing in this section are prepared by members of HIGH FIDELITY'S staff, on the basis of actual use in
conjunction with a home music system, and the resulting subjective evaluations of equipment are expressed as the opinions of the
reviewer only. Reports are usually restricted to items of general interest, and no attempt is made to report on items that are obviously
not designed primarily for high fidelity applications. Each report is sent to the manufacturer before publication; he is free to correct
the specifications paragraph, to add a comment at the end of the report, or to request that it be deferred (pending changes in
his product) or not be published. He may not, however, change the report. Failure of a new product to appear in TITH may mean
either that it has not been submitted for review, or that it was submitted and was found to be unsatisfactory. These reports
may not be quoted or reproduced, in part or in whole, for any purpose whatsoever, without written permission from the publisher.
Harman - Kardon Equipment: Counterpoint FM
Tuner, Trend Control Unit -Amplifier, Recital and
Festival Tuner- ControlUnit -Amplifiers
SPECIFICATIONS (furnished by
A -400 COUNTERPOINT TUNER
manufacturer):
compact FM
tuner, with Armstrong circuit, dual limiters, and
Foster -Seeley discriminator AFC control. Sensitivity: 2 microvolts for 20 db quieting. Selectivity:
200 kc bandwidth. Drift:
2.5 kc with AFC full
on;
20 kc with AFC off. Antenna input: 300 ohms.
Distortion:
less than 1.0 % harmonic. Response:
0.5 db, 20 to 20.000 cycles. Controls: AFC and
AC power; tuning; output level. Output: 3 volts for
100 % modulation, from cathode follower. Tubes:
-a
6U8, 12AT7, 4 -6AU6, 6AL5, 12AU7. Dimensions:
11 1/8 in. wide by 4 high by 73,6 deep, over -all.
Price: $89.95. C -300 TREND AMPLIFIER
complete
preamplifier -equalizer, control unit, and power amplifier combined on one chassis. Inputs: total of
four; three high -level high -impedance, marked
Tuner, Aux 1, and Aux 2; one low -level high -impedance marked Mag phono. Controls: Loudness
Contour; Loudness; Bass (
18 db, 50 cycles);
Treble
18 db, 10,000 cycles); Equalizer -Selector
-a
(t
(LP, RIAA, EUR, TUNER, AUX 1, AUX 2,
Tape equalization: 15, 7.5, 3.75 ips), Rumble filter
switch; Phono level switch; Level -set controls for
Tuner, Aux 1, and Aux 2; Variable speaker damping. Outputs: two, one at high impedance to tape
recorder; one at 4, 8. or 16 ohms to speaker. Power
output: 30 watts at 0.5 % IM. Frequency response:
r 1.0 db, 20 to 40,000 cycles at 30 watts output.
Damping factor: variable from 0.1 to 20. Three convenience AC outlets, two switched, one unswitched. Tubes:
12AT7, 12AU7, 2- 5Y3GT, 2 -5881.
Dimensions: 12% in. wide by 4high by 10 3/8 deep,
over -all. Price: $119.95; $129.95 with copper cage.
D -200
RECITAL TUNER -AMPLIFIER
combined
FM -AM tuner, preamplifier- equalizer -control unit,
and power amplifier. Tuner Sensitivity: FM 3
microvolts for 20 db quieting, AM 20 microvolts.
3-
-
-a
The Counterpoint FM -only tuner.
Selectivity: FM 200 kc bandwidth, AM 8 kc bandwidth. FM drift:
5 kc maximum.
FM antenna
input: 300 ohms. Loopstick AM antenna. Distortion: less than 1.0 % harmonic on FM, less than
1.0 % harmonic on AM at levels up to 80 % modulation. Frequency response: FM
0.5 db, 20 to
20,000 cycles; AM
3 db, 20 to 5,000 cycles.
Audio section
Inputs: Two, one at low -level high impedance for magnetic Phono, one at high -level
high-impedance for Auxiliary. Controls: Tuning
and AFC defeat; Equalizer -Selector (AM, FM,
- t
t
16 db. 10,000
AUX, LP, RIAA, EUR); Treble (
16 db, 50 cycles); Loudness and
cycles); Bass
AC power; Loudness Contour. Outputs: one at
high -level high -impedance to tape recorder, one at
8 or 16 ohms to speaker. Power output: 12 watts
0.5 db, 40 to
at 1.0 % IM. Frequency response:
0.5 db, 10 to
15,000 cycles at 12 watts output;
12AT7, 6BE6,
40,000 cycles at 1 watt. Tubes:
6L6GB,
6BA6, 2-66AU6, 6AL5, 12AU7, 12AX7,
5Y3GT. Dimensions: 11 5/16 in. wide by 5 7/16
D
-1100
FES11
7/16
deep.
Price:
$149.95.
high by
TIVAL TUNER -AMPLIFIER
combined FM -AM
unit,
and
equalizer
-control
tuner, preamplifierSensitivity: FM 2 micropower amplifier. Tuner
AM
5
microvolts.
Selecdb
quieting,
volts for 20
tivity: FM 200 kc bandwidth, AM 8 kc bandwidth.
FM drift:
5 kc, maximum. FM antenna input:
300 ohms. Loopstick AM antenna. Distortion: Less
than 1.0 % harmonic on FM. AM less than 1.0 %
harmonic for signals below 80 % modulation. Fre0.5 db, 20 to 20,000 cycles;
quency response: FM
AM
3 db, 20 to 5,000 cycles. Audio section
Inputs: three, one at low -level high -impedance for
magnetic Phono, two at high -level high -impedance
for Auxiliary and tape recorder Monitor output.
(t
t
3- 2-
quite a number of fairly weak stations
coming in with almost equal intensity all
along the dial. It takes a good tuner to
separate some of the stations as well as the
Counterpoint does. The automatic frequen-
-a
-
t
-
Tuning and AFC defeat; Equalizer and
Selector (AM, FM, AUX, LP, RIAA, EUR);
16 db,
Treble
16 db, 10,000 cycles); Bass
50 cycles); Loudness and AC power; Loudness
Contour. Outputs: one at high -level high- impedance
to tape recorder; one at 8 or 16 ohms to speaker.
Power output: 30 watts at 0.5 % IM. Damping factor:
0.1 db, 20 to 40,000
20. Frequency response:
1.0 db, 20 to 40,000 cycles
cycles at 15 watts;
at 30 watts. Tubes: 6U8, 2- 12AT7, 6BE6, 26BA6, 2 -6AU6, 6AL5, 3-12AU7, 2 -5881, 6X4,
5U4GB. Dimensions: 13 5/8 in. wide by 7 high by
12A deep, over -all. Price: $199.95. MANUFACTURER:
Harman- Kardon, Inc., 520 Main Street, Westbury, L. I., N. Y.
Controls:
(t
(t
t
One of the objections sometimes voiced by
music -lovers is that high -fidelity equipment
seems to cost more than it is worth. Admittedly, there is a broad field of components,
well above the middle -of- the -road, where
considerable increases in cost are reflected
by diminishing improvements, and where
it is possible to spend $200 for an improvement that, to many ears, is almost undetectable.
But in the medium -to- respectable price
range, an additional few dollars spent on a
piece of equipment is likely to bring a very
audible improvement in sound.
The Counterpoint FM tuner, for instance,
Yet its peris priced well below Id loo.
formance is in many respects comparable to
tuners listed above the century mark. The
sensitivity of the unit I tested was very
good, particularly toward the lower end of
the FM band, and in direct comparison with
some more expensive tuners, the Harman Kardon Counterpoint came surprisingly
close to matching them.
Selectivity, the ability to separate closely packed stations on the dial, was excellent
on the Counterpoint. Remember also that
my receiving location here in Great Barrington is definitely a fringe area for FM, with
The Trend control- unit -amplifier.
control on this tuner is really potent!
With the AFC control in its full -on position,
a strong station could be held locked in
for almost 3/4 of an inch along the dial,
completely blanking out weaker ones on
both sides of it. On the other hand, with
the AFC turned down a little, it could easily
hold onto a weaker station next to a strong
one.
The tuning meter, which is a center -ofstation indicator, was very sensitive, requiring only a small amount of detuning
for a marked deflection of the needle.
Sound quality was also quite good.
Limiting is equally good.
The Counterpoint tuner is housed on a
smartly styled brushed- copper chassis, and
is available with an optional matching cover,
for exposed installation of the unit on a
bookshelf or table. Other optional accessories include a brass cover and fittings, in
place of the standard copper ones, and a
vertically- calibrated tuning dial so the unit
may be installed with the knobs arranged
vertically.
The Trend amplifier is a single- chassis
preamp -control -unit- power -amplifier combination with the same brushed copper
finish and slick styling as the tuner. It is
equally compact, considering what is packed
into the case, and is versatile enough to
cy
Continued on page
Iii
I07
APRIL 1956
www.americanradiohistory.com
I
Widow
until we discovered
was a Hi
Fi
CLEAN, BRILLIANT
H. H. SCOTT SOUND
as low as
X9995
"THE 99"
$99.95* Buys the
(MODEL 99 -B)
H. H. Scott
COMPLETE CONTROL & POWER CENTER
22 Watt Power Amplifier- Preamp
TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS
2 magnetic inputs so you can plug in both
changer and turntable with a switch In front
you can easily select between the two.
5 position record compensator that includes special NARTB tape curve to let
you play direct from tape heads without
external pre -amp. Separate in -out switches
for scratch and rumble so even old 78
Loudness control for
records sound good.
2
perfect sound at any volume setting.
tape outputs, one for actually recording,
the other for monitoring direct from tape.
Level control to match your phono carSeparate
tridge perfectly to the amplifier.
-
H. H.
Scott, Inc., Dept.
H4 385
Putnam Ave., Cambridge, Mass. Export Dept.: Telesco International Corp. 270 Park Ave., N. Y. 17
www.americanradiohistory.com
bass and treble tone controls to let you adjust perfectly for room acoustics and differences between pickups and speakers.
Output connections for any speaker between
3 and 24 ohms. Many other features you'd
expect only from much more expensive
-
equipment, including self -balancing output
circuit and clean symmetrical clipping.
30 kc.
Frequency Response: Flat 2Ocps
Harmonic distortion less than O.8%, first order difference -tone intermodulation distortion less than 0.3 %. Hum Level: 80 db
Dimensions in case:
below full output.
15í/a x 4 +/ x 12%.
59.95*
Handsome accessory case
*Slightly higher west of Rockies
TESTED IN THE HOME
Continued from page 107
suit all but the most dedicated knob twisters.
Three record -equalization positions are
included on the selector switch, to match
most available 78 -rpm records (Eur) and
LPs (RIAA and LP). At the other extreme
of the selector switch's rotation, there are
three tape- equalization positions to allow
a tape deck to be plugged directly into the
Trend's Tape input, for precise equalization
of all brands of pre- recorded tape. Also on
the front panel is a rumble filter switch
which in one position provides bass cut
below 5o cycles. This neatly removes every
trace of low- frequency interference, along
with some of the deep bass in the music.
A three -position phono level switch is
located at the rear of the chassis, to allow
The Recital complete tuner-amplifier.
the phono input level to be set for optimum
operation of the loudness control. Pickup
termination is fixed at 47,000 ohms. Replacing the input resistor with the correct
value for any cartridge is a simple matter,
though, and is recommended for best results.
A rather unusual feature of the Trend
amplifier is the way its Loudness control
operates. With the Contour control in its
extreme counter- clockwise position, the
Loudness control functions like a regular
volume control, introducing no tonal compensation. But as the Contour control is
advanced, the Loudness begins to introduce
bass compensation as it is turned down.
For a given rotation of the Loudness
control, the amount of bass boost depends
upon the Contour setting; yet even with the
Contour knob set for full loudness compensation, the full -volume position of the Loudness control introduces practically no boost.
The net result is identical to that where a
standard loudness control is used in conjunction with a front -panel level control .
it gives optimum operation of the loudness
function, almost regardless of the volume
of the input source. However, since the
Trend already has individual level -set controls for each input, I am a little dubious of
the necessity for the additional front -panel
loudness compensation adjustment.
The rest of the amplifier circuitry is fairly
straightforward, with tone controls that
affect the balance of the sound rather than
.
spectrum. The loudness control should be
turned down when switching inputs, to
prevent switching pops.
The Recital and Festival units include an
AM -FM tuner, preamp, control unit, and
power amplifier on a single chassis. Both of
these are, in fact, about as complete as
having controls that
anyone could wish
fulfill the functions of most of these found
on the big separate- chassis assembled systems, but without any of the duplication of
functions that is often characteristic of them.
The tuner section of the Recital does not
have quite the FM sensitivity of the Counterpoint, but both the AM and FM sensitivity are more than adequate for all but bad
fringe areas. On the other hand, the Festival
has a really hot tuner section, with FM which
closely approaches the performance of the
Counterpoint, and really remarkable sensitivity and selectivity on AM.
Sound from the AM section in both units
is quite good, albeit somewhat restricted
at the high end, and the narrow bandwidth
eliminates any tendency toward to- kilocycle
interstation whistles. FM sound from both
is quite as good as that from the Counterpoint.
The amplifier sections of the Recital and
Festival units are similar in many respects
to the Trend, with most of the differences
being in flexibility of the control circuits.
Both have the three -position equalizer positions on the function selector switch, and
the tone controls on both are the same variable- balance type as are on the Trend.
The AFC controls on these, though, have
been incorporated into the tuning knob.
By depressing the tuning knob, the AFC
can be temporarily cut out while the tuner
is being accurately set to the center of a
station, and the AFC will hold it there
after the knob is released. AFC is, advisedly,
less effective on these units than on the
Counterpoint. Full- powered AFC would
pull the tuning away from a desired weak
station to an adjacent strong one.
Another feature that will be of interest
to owners of three -headed tape recorders
which permit monitoring from the tape, is
the Monitoring facility on the Festival. A
switch on the rear of the chassis allows the
input to the control section to be isolated
...
.
its range, and an ultra- linear -type power
amplifier.
Sound -wise, the Trend is crisp and clear,
with a healthy low end that lends a very
impressive quality to reproduced sound. The
controls are positive- acting, with plenty of
boost or cut available at both ends of the
The Festival has a 3o -watt output rating.
from the preceding stages, and fed to an
external input receptacle. This allows a
signal from the tuner or phono to be run
from the Tape Output jack into the recorder, while the output from the recorder's
own amplifying section is feeding into the
monitor jack, back into the isolated control
section. What is heard through the rest of
the system then is the sound coming from
the recorder, rather than that coming directly
from the earlier stages.
The over -all sound of the Festival is understandably better than that from the Recital, probably because of its higher power
reserve. Both have much the same crisp
sound that was noted from the Trend
amplifier, although it was found initially
that a certain dullness in the sound from
the Recital was due to the treble control
knob being incorrectly positioned. It was
indicating flat response for a position that
was cutting highs, but since the knobs are
fastened onto fluted shafts, it was a simple
matter to rotate it to its correct position
about 3o degrees to the right and re- orient
G. H.
the knob.
-J.
Audiogersh Miratwin
Cartridges
(furnished by manufacturer): a
variable returnover cartridge consisting of two for
use with
luctance units mounted back -to -back Frequency
recordings.
microgroove
or
standard
microon
2 db, 30 to 17,500 cycles
response:
4 db, 30 to 22,000 cycles on standard
grooves;
records. Output: 45 millivolts from standard recSPECIFICATIONS
t
ords; 55 millivolts from microgroove records.
Stylus force: 6 to 8 grams. Recommended load:
100,000 ohms. Will operate properly with between
or
22,000 and 100,000 ohms load. Styli: diamonds
Price:
sapphires, individually replaceable by user.standard
$22.50 with two sapphires; $45.00 with
DISTRIBUTOR:
sapphire and microgroove diamond.
Audiogersh Corporation, 23 Park Place, New York
7, N. Y.
Phono pickups have been getting lighter and
lighter during the past few years, and with
at least three current types designed to
operate at less than 4 grams, I was at first
tempted to view the Miratwin's 6 -to -8 -gram
rating with some distaste.
But as is often the case, there is more to
this pickup than meets the eye. Users of
some of the modern light- weight pickups
have complained of higher- than -average
distortion from them, so I was curious to
see whether this pickup was good enough
to justify using it despite its rather high
stylus force. It is!
This is one of the sweetest- sounding
cartridges I've heard for some time. Used
in a good pickup arm, it tracks admirably
at 6 grams on both standard and microgroove records. The high end is very
smooth, reducing the annoyance value of
clicks and pops on disks, and imparting a
velvety sheen to massed string tone.
Its measured frequency response meets
specifications as far as I could determine,
and both the standard and microgroove
cartridges are visibly (on the oscilloscope)
and audibly clean over the entire measured
range. There is no tendency for either
cartridge to break up or introduce distortion in the high- frequency range, as do
many pickups which are equally wide -range.
On very high -volume passages below
about 5o cycles, the Miratwin's comparatively low compliance shows up as some
detectable stress. This is nothing to worry
a music -lover, but the cartridge may have a
little difficulty tracking thunder storms,
railway locomotives, and earthquakes.
Flipping the Miratwin over for 78 -rpm
records verifies the measured smoothness
of it. Surface noise from shellac records is
Continued on next page
III
APRIL 1956
www.americanradiohistory.com
TESTED IN THE HOME
Continued from page
zie
through the ribbon, and the current field,
interacting with the permanent magnetic
field, creates a force that acts uniformly over
the entire ribbon surface.
Therefore it
moves as a unit at any applied frequency.
Because the ribbon is as large as it is, the
permanent- magnet gap is larger than it
would be in a conventional tweeter; to obtain an intense field, then, the magnet must
be large. This one weighs about 8 lbs.
And because the ribbon is the radiating surface, in which capacity it must be considered
ing woofer can make as loud a din as you'd
want to listen to for long, it isn't nearly as
electrically robust as some tweeters.
A
strong overload pulse through a high -power
amplifier might put it out of business rather
quickly. Be careful here! It must be used
with a sharp -cutoff crossover network operating no lower than 3,000 cps, and this may
raise some problems in finding a suitable
woofer; not many will go that high with
quality approaching that of the tweeter.
Perhaps a three -way system would do it.
The physical construction has a few shortcomings, although not serious ones. Exposed to view and the atmosphere are the
ribbon and magnetic gap; a screen dust cover of some sort would be desirable.
The sheet -metal supporting frame and the
horn bell itself have a tendency to ring when
struck or excited by vibration at certain frequencies. This can be eliminated by clamping or mounting them firmly, so as to damp
out the resonance.
Against these application restrictions must
be weighed its performance, which is truly
superb over its operating range, and its
price
which is remarkably low for a
unit of such quality. Without the network
it costs $69.95. By choosing carefully the
other components, a speaker system with
the Kelly tweeter at the top can be assembled
for $200 to $250 that would be as good
from 4o cps upward, in my opinion, as
present techniques can devise for home
listening.
One word of warning! The magnet on
this unit is very powerful and will damage
a watch (as well as attract pliers, nuts, bolts,
paper clips, etc.) even through the cardboard box in which the RLS /r is shipped.
The carton should be labelled "Remove
watch before touching."
R. A.
-
A
thin ribbon drives the Kelly tweeter.
rather small, physically, it must be supplied
with a horn to increase its radiation efficiency.
The horn is of catenoidal shape, and has a
cutoff frequency of about r,000 cps.
This is a high- frequency reproducer that
(judging by ear) has a smoothness of response, up to well beyond the hearing range,
that is about the equal of any I've ever
heard. Such smoothness must be heard to
be appreciated; it defies description. Aside
from the increased naturalness to be obtained with good program material, a most
interesting and welcome bonus is the reduction in record surface noise obtained
with a really smooth tweeter.
As with all good things, though, there
are some limitations. First, the efficiency
of the RLS /r is approximately that of many
high -quality speakers intended for direct
radiation, and slightly less than some of
them. For that reason the crossover network
has a level control on the low- frequency
channel, so that you can adjust the woofer
level downward. But the tweeter is more
efficient than some very good woofers
if you want to use one of them, you must
use a different network, add a level control
to the tweeter channel, or use a two -channel
amplifier system. We think there ought to
be a built -in tweeter level control too. If
you want to use the Kelly tweeter with a
highly -efficient front -loaded horn woofer,
on the other hand, the efficiencies are too
far apart to match with a woofer level control; here a two- channel amplifier system,
with crossover filters before the amplifiers,
is a must.
Again, although the RLS/r with a match-
-
-
A diagram of the
recommended enclosure permitting matching the
sensitivity of the Kelly tweeter to that of most
woofers is provided with the tweeter. We would
point out. additionally, that the dividing network
supplied has a potentiometer to introduce attenuation in the low frequencies, making possible accurate matching to other higher -efficiency woofers.
In cases where the woofer has lower efficiency
than the tweeter, a 16 -ohm T -pad control may be
inserted between the network and the tweeter.
In our literature, we specifically warn against
the application of any signal below 3,000 cycles.
We intend to introduce in the near future a 12inch speaker which will more than adequately
handle the mid -range, so that the problems pointed
out in this respect will be eliminated.
MANUFACTURER'S COMMENT:
on a preset mark (at the 3 -gram point).
This works, and is a fine idea: the scale we
received for test was twice as stiff as the
scale indicated. In other words, the 3 -gram
mark really meant 6 grams; the 2 gram
mark meant 4 grams. The penny test (as
The Walco pressure gauge and level.
well as a more accurate one) proved this.
The penny had to be pushed almost corn -
pletely off the upper strip, but the gauge
could be fairly easily adjusted by bending
the fold of the spring strip.
The idea is good, and certainly checking
stylus weight is important, so we'd say this
is a worthwhile addition to your kit, provided you check it (with a new penny)
and adjust it before using.
One other point: you'll have a bit of
trouble with magnetic cartridges whose
magnets are oriented to attract the gauge.
It snapped up against my pickup cartridge
with considerable vigor and it was then difficult to slide the cartridge to determine its
weight. However, this phenomenon will not
affect readings or their accuracy.
C. F.
-
The Walco stylus
pressure gauge is the only one which can be adMANUFACTURER'S COMMENT:
justed for accuracy by the user. Its one -piece design eliminates error caused by pivot or joint friction. Its compact length and shallow height permit
placing directly on the turntable with the phono
arm in the same relative position as when playing
a record, to eliminate any inaccuracy which might
occur with a pickup arm whose pressure varies as
its vertical angle changes.
Hi -Fi Slumber Switch
outlet attachment which permits the shut -off switch in a record changer to control the rest of the amplifying equipment also.
Includes a two -way outlet box, switch to select
conventional operation or remote switching from
changer, and 3 -ft. interconnecting cable.
Price:
$7.95. MANUFACTURER: The Hi -Fi Center, Inc..
2630 N. Downer Ave., Milwaukee 11, Wis.
DESCRIPTION: an AC
Walco 'Balanced Sound"
Kit
This kit includes a small spirit level 3 in.
long and a tricky device for determining
stylus pressure. The spirit level works fine,
and is a useful adjunct to the hi -fi tool kit.
A level turntable is one of the prerequisites
for minimum record wear and distortion.
Another prerequisite is, of course, correct stylus pressure. The Walco device is
a folded strip of steel about an inch wide
and 4 in. long. The upper piece hangs free
at one end, and is marked with a scale, in
grams. It takes only a small amount of
weight near the free end to depress the
upper strip until it parallels a fold in the
lower strip. As is apparent, it takes increasingly greater weight to depress the strip as
the weight is moved toward the hinged end.
A neat idea is the method of checking the
accuracy of the gauge: you put a new penny
I14
How many times have we wished we could
put a stack of records on the changer, turn
the system down to a soothing whisper, and
go to sleep lulled by the strains of Berlioz'
Te Deum or the Trout Quintet? Sounds like
a wonderful idea, but few of us would like
the idea of leaving our high -fidelity systems
turned on all night, and if we have to get
up to turn it off after the last record it loses
its effectiveness as a bedtime sedative.
The Slumber Switch is the answer, and
it's one of those things that prompt us to
say "Why didn't I think of that ?"
All it is is a two -way AC outlet box
with two sets of wires coming out of it,
one terminated by a switch, and the other
by three bared wires. The Slumber Switch
isn't automatic itself; it depends upon the
Continued on page
z
16
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
No. 2 in a series on the contributions of Master Craftsmen to the history of music.
ANTOINE JOSEPH SAX: MASTER CRAFTSMAN
This master craftsman achieved early fame in
Belgium as a maker of superlative musical
instruments, but his contribution to musical
history did not stop there. In 1842, while working
on an improved version of a bass clarinet.
Sax made a startling discovery about wind
instruments. He found that the timbre of the
sound is not dependent on the material of the
walls of the tube, as his contemporaries thought,
but is a result of the proportions given to a
column of air vibrating in a sonorous tube.
In 1845, utilizing this discovery, he patented
his saxhorn and in 1846 he registered the
world's first saxophone.
You will find the same mixture of fine craftsmanship and scientific experimentation today
in the sound laboratories of Radio Craftsmen.
Since the first days of high fidelity, the name
of Radio Craftsmen has been synonymous with
"the sound of quality:' At the same time Radio
Craftsmen has introduced many firsts in high
fidelity. The new Craftsmen Model CT -3 tuner
with micro -accurate tuning meter, cascaded
double limiters, wide band IF's and other
features, is a typical example of Craftsmen
leadership and scrupulous attention to quality
details. The CT -3 has been hailed by critical
audio -philes as a worthy addition to the famous
Craftsmen line of high fidelity equipment.
Ask for a demonstration of Craftsmen high
fidelity components at your dealer now.
Or write for free, illustrated catalog.
RADIO
craftsmen
INC., a subsidiary of Precision Radiation Instruments
4223-F West Jefferson Boulevard, Los Angeles 16, California
APRIL 1956
115
TESTED IN THE HOME
Continued from page I14
shut -off switch on a record changer to do
all the work. This device simply allows you
to connect an amplifier to a record changer's
switch, so that when the changer shuts off,
so does everything else.
The three wires coming from the AC outlet box connect to the switch on the changer,
with the red and black leads going to the
switch connections (polarity doesn't matter),
and the green lead going to the unswitched
side of the turntable's AC line. Then the
amplifier and other accessories plug into
the outlet box, and it's ready to go.
The slide switch at the end of the second
lead selects the modus operandi. One position permits the system to be used as before,
independent of the changer switch, and permits warming up the rest of the equipment
before starting the changer. The other position ties the amplifying equipment to the
changer switch, for automatic shut -off.
To say that it works beautifully is hardly
necessary; there's so little to it. But watch
out for the terminals on the slide switch;
they're carrying r to volts. The safest thing
would be to mount the switch on a panel as
intended, if for no other reason than to
keep inquisitive pets and children away from
the contacts.
As far as I can see, for the $7.95 that it
costs, there is no reason why every owner of
a changer that shuts itself off shouldn't
have one. The convenience is more than
worth the price.
J. G. H.
-
Interelectronics Coronation 85 Consolette and
Coronation 400 Amplifier
SPECIFICATIONS (furnished by manufacturer): a
40 -watt power amplifier and separate preamplifier control unit.
MODEL 85 CONSOLETTE
Inputs:
-
two low -level for magnetic phonos, three high -level
for Tuner, Tape and TV. Controls: selector (Phono
1, Phono 2, Tuner, TV and Tape); volume and AC
power; bass
20 db, 20 cycles); treble
20 db,
20,000 cycles); bass turnover (800, 400, 500, 500LP);
treble rolloff
-12, -13.7, -16 db); loudness control; level sets for AM -FM and phono inputs.
Outputs: two, to main amplifier and tape recorder.
Frequency response: 5 to 200,000 cycles. Distortion:
virtually non -measurable; exceeds FCC FM broad-
(t
casting requirements. Power source: external amplifier or power supply. Tubes: 2 -729, 12AY7,
12AX7. Dimensions: 14 in. wide by 4 high by 3%
deep, over-all. Price: $79.50. Cabinet: mahogany
$9.95, blonde $10.95.
Separate power supply:
-
$9.95.
MODEL 400 POWER AMPLIFIER
Input:
one high -level high -impedance. Outputs: 8 and 16
ohms to speaker; preamplifier power; electrostatic
tweeter power. Control: variable speaker damping.
Power rating: 40 watts. Frequency response: 5 to
200,000 cycles. Power response: 18 to 35,000 cycles
at 40 watts. Distortion: virtually unmeasurable at
low levels; below .05 % harmonic and .25 % inter -
confidence inspired by the looks of this
equipment is not misplaced.
The Coronation Consolette, an elaborate
preamplifier-control-equalizer, is one of the
relatively few such units having two separate magnetic phono input channels, so
you can use a changer as well as a turntable. It also has three high -level inputs
labeled AM -FM, TAPE, and TV. There
is an input level control on the AM -FM
channel and another that is effective on
both phono channels. The phono preamplifier section uses feedback equalization
( feedback is used in all stages of the unit,
for that matter, including tone controls).
There is plenty of preamp gain, and the
noise level is extremely low. Individual
four-position turnover and rolloff controls
are furnished; positions are well selected
and accurate. The equalization knobs are
small, unfortunately, and fairly difficult to
turn
at least when the unit is new.
Combined with the volume control is the
AC on -off switch. Below and to the left
is a loudness contour control, which determines the amount of loudness compensation applied to, the volume control. At
very high volume-control settings the contour control has no effect; at low volume
settings the contour control, which is con-
I16
-
-
tinuous in action, provides progressively
more bass boost as it is rotated clockwise.
In other words, it determines the maximum compensation and the slope of the
compensation curve at any given low setting of the volume control. This works
out very well in operation. The contour
control does not effect the high frequencies, as some do, and it causes no apparent change in average level as it is operated. Maximum compensation at 5o cycles
is about 13 db.
Bass and treble tone controls were, I
found, truly flat in their center positions,
and had average ranges of action. They
were definitely not average in performance,
though
have seldom if ever worked
with tone controls that were smoother and
more distortion-free. It was a pleasure
to use them. Further, the unit passes
square waves unusually well, indicating excellent transient and frequency response
and very low phase shift.
The Consolette has, in addition to the
main output, a TAPE OUT jack that is
connected ahead of the loudness and tone
controls, so that you can record a flat constant-level signal while monitoring over
the main system. There is also an outlet
that furnishes power for a Weathers pick-
-I
modulation at 30 watts. Sensitivity: 1 volt input
for 40 watts output. Hum and noise: 96 db or more
below 40 watts. Tubes: 2 -KT -66 or 2 -1614, 6SL7GT, 6SN7GTB, 5V4G. Dimensions: 4% in. wide
by 15 long by 6% high. MANUFACTURER: Interelectronics Corporation, 2432 Grand Concourse, New
York 58, N. Y.
The Interelectronics line of amplifying
equipment has had a most impressive appearance ever since its introduction years
ago, with specifications to match. There
has always been an air of elegant competence in the neat layout, chromed chassis, and high -quality components used in
construction. And the prices have certainly
been attractive. We are glad now to be
able to say without reservation that the
power supply can be obtained at extra
cost. Its performance, whether used with
its complementary amplifier or another of
high quality, is splendid. I have only one
adverse comment
there was a loud plop
in the speaker when the selector switch
was turned from a high-level channel to a
phono position. This may have been a
peculiarity of the unit I had for testing,
of course; in any case, it is good practice
with all control units to turn down the
volume when operating the selector switch.
Beautifully put together and a most
capable performer, too, is the Coronation
400 amplifier. It is rated at 4o watts, and
The Interelectronics model 85 consolette.
up although, surprisingly, there is no constant- amplitude phono input as would be
required for a Weathers. The unit does
not have a built -in main power supply. It
is intended to receive power from the
Coronation amplifier, but a separate small
The Coronation 400 power amplifier.
our test amplifier handled this power level
with ease. This works out to about $2.74
per watt, which is quite a buy. Stability
at both ends of the audio range is, so far
as I could determine, just about perfect.
With this high power and stability, and
very low distortion, the 400 takes a place
among the best of modern amplifiers.
There are 8 and 16 -ohm speaker taps
available, and a continuously -adjustable
speaker damping control is furnished. There
are also two switched AC power outlets,
an octal socket that supplies operating
voltages for a preamp- control unit, and
first time I've seen this
an output for a
high- impedance electrostatic speaker. Forward thinking, that!
In conclusion: both the amplifier and
the control unit are first-rank in construction, appearance, and listening qualities.
Each has some combinations of features
found in no other competing units. The
prices are better than right. Servicing
should be easy w hen required, and
packaging is excellent.
R.A.
-
-
-
MANUFACTURER'S COMMENT:
The equalization
knobs and switches on the Interelectronics Consolette conform to professional requirements for exact
"torque" or resistance to turning for the knob
sizes used. Individual preferences for torque requirements vary, and the detent action on the Con solette can be quickly and easily adjusted for
greater ease in operation whenever required.
An auxiliary power outlet is provided on the Con solette for powering motion picture photocells and
capacitor microphones, in addition to the Weathers
FM cartridge and other devices. This insures the
greatest flexibility in use, for since two high gain
phono inputs are provided, the inexpensive Weathers
capacitor jack supplied by Weathers may be used
in either or both inputs when the Weathers FM
cartridge is used. This feature also permits using
both inputs for cartridges other than the Weathers.
The selector switch "clicks" are due to the excellent rise time characteristics of both the Con solette and Amplifier units, which can pass even
microsecond switch transients. Turning the volume down before operating the selector will make
the "clicks" inaudible.
A feature worth mentioning is the Interelectronics
loudspeaker damping control on the Coronation
400 amplifier. This control, unlike many others,
operates over the entire frequency range, and per mita adjustment to the. exact point of "critical
damping" where best performance of any loud-
speaker occurs.
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
R l VERDALE
PROJECT
Continued from page S 6
position to offer it. Perhaps the
greatest co- operation in The Riverdale Project" has come from Maestro
himself. He is always willing and
even anxious to listen to anything
that requires his decision, whether
it be an entire symphony or just a
few questionable bars.
A listening
session with Maestro is always entered
into with apprehension. Toscanini is a
humble man in his daily life, but he
will roar when subjected to musical
slovenliness. Our listening sessions
are usually composed of a small group:
Maestro, Signorina Colombo, John
Corbett, and I. Maestro sits in his
large, high- backed chair, and the rest
of us cluster closely around him with
our scores. The music emanates from
a huge speaker in a corner of the room,
and it is capable of reproducing the
full volume levels required.
The first few bars are always the
most important; it is during those
moments that we forget to breathe.
We have learned to recognize the almost imperceptible, but immediate,
signs of Maestro's pleasure or displeasure. A slight, very slow sidewise motion of the head: No! If
the music is allowed to continue, there
may be an eruption. No motion at all:
no decision as yet. If the right hand
moves ever so little, but in rhythm:
probably yes. This hopeful sign becomes stronger if all goes well. The
other hand begins to move. Then
both arms. Soon, with the great
characteristic sweeps of his arms, Arturo Toscanini is once again conducting his orchestra, bringing sections in
on cue, sometimes singing with them,
sometimes exhorting them to greater
effort. At times like this, his great
power and personality become almost
hypnotic, and I am aware that I am
closer to a more perfect and complete
understanding of the music than ever
before. It is often like hearing a piece
of music for the first time.
Once in a while a note of pathos
will creep into our listening sessions.
Maestro will slowly stop his conducting motions and his head will settle
forward. It seems that he is gazing
off into space. We know this apparent
abstraction is not caused by displeasure
with the music, but rather by memories
conjured up by what he hears. At
BROCINER
PRINTED
CIRCUIT AUDIO AMPLIFIERS
receive
approbation
of Experts!
Mork 10 Integrated Amplifier and
Control Center
..575.00 net.
HIGH FIDELITY Magazine says: "This little amplifier
is
really good!"
... the Mark 10 is
definitely better than most of its similarly priced competitors, and is capable of competing with some that are much more expensive.."
.
THE
NATION
B. H.
Noggin): "Astonished me."
AUDIO Magazine: "... the Brociner Mark 10 ... is designed on gocd engineering principles and does not rely on 'gimmicks' for its performance."
Mark 30A Power Amplifier
598.25
net
HIGH FIDELITY Magazine:
.. gives every
indicaton of being a
few steps closer to
perfection"
"Definitely a unit to be used with top quality associated components, since
well in that category itself."
HIGH FIDELITY Magazine:
.. distortion
it
is
Mork 30C Audio Control Center
$88.50
has been reduced
net
almost to the vanishing point ...
Strictly a top -quality control unit
worthy of the very finest associated equipment, and well suited
to the needs of the high fidelity
perfectionist."
BROCINER "top quality" equipment is available at better high fidelity distributors. Prices slightly higher west of Rockies. Literature on request.
Wei
BROCINER
ELECTRONICS
CORPORATION
Dept. HF4
344 E. 32nd St.
New York 16, N. Y.
Continued on next page
119
APRIL 1956
www.americanradiohistory.com
build
your own
RIVERDALE PROJECT
Continued from preceding page
FORESTER
3 -way
Low Distortion
SPEAKER
SYSTEM
for as little as $129.00
... with
I M distortion below that of systems costing more than $350.00. Intermodulation distortion
or "blurring" of the most -listened -to middle and
high frequencies is prevented by complete electrical and acoustical isolation of each speaker.
This results in less than 0.5% IM distortion to
provide exceptionally clean middle tones and
clear highs with no harshness.
The Forester system
contains
3
low
distortion speakers.
(A) a 12" woofer,
30 -300 cps, with a 1
Ib. magnet; (B) an
8" mid -range unit,
300 -5000 cps. with
a 14.6 oz. magnet
and (C) a 5" tweeter,
5000-18,000 cps
with
a 2.15 oz. magnet and lightweight,
spiderless cone.
These three speakFront View
ers are controlled by
a 6- element, 300:5000 cps, 12 db /octave crossover network. The entire cabinet measures 32'
high, 25" wide, 141/2" deep.
COMPLETE SYSTEMS
Spkrs., network, cabinet drawings... S 79.50
Spkrs., network, cabinet kit
S129.00
SF1 /SFP Spkrs., network and assembled %"
unfinished plywood cabinet
$154.00
SF1C
Spkrs., network, in finished bleached
mahogany cabinet (illustrated)
5189.00
SF1
SF1 /SFK
MODERNIZATION SYSTEMS
For use with your present 12" speaker, instead
of the Sherwood Woofer.
SF2
Same as SF1, less 12" woofer
SF2 /SFK Same as SF1/SFK, less 12" woofer
SF2 SF P Same as SF1/SFP, less 12" woofer
CROSSOVER NETWORKS
S
49.50
S
99.00
5124.00
(16 ohms)
For your own speaker system.
S F
235
S
22
5
X55
300 /5000 cps, 12 db /octave
200 cps, 12 db /octave
S
S
19.50
26.00
500 /5000 cps, 12 db /octave
5
16.50
S X6
600 cps, 12 db /octave
$
16.90
S
X8
800 cps, 12 db /octave
S
15.50
S
X36
3500 cps, 12 db /octave
Si
6.50
the Forester Speaker System at your
hi -fi dealer or write for free descriptive
See
catalog. Construction manual also available at 50P.
Other Sherwood products include:
Low Distortion Amplifiers from $99.50
and FM -AM Tuners from $139.50
S/7/'fY000
IIICTRONIC IABORATaRIIS, INC.
Dept. 4H
2802 W. Cullom Ave.
Chicago 18, Illinois
times like this we can only be very
quiet and wait for him to return to us.
During playbacks Maestro hears
only music, and never the many distracting noises always present in a
public performance. There can be a
thousand coughs and sneezes from the
audience. There can be chair squeaks.
the sound of turning pages and
dropped mutes from the orchestra.
These do not bother him. I remember
one time when we were considering a
particularly delicate and low level
composition. It was recorded at a regular
recording session, with no audience
and no noise. After hearing it through,
Maestro wanted to hear a particular
broadcast version of the same work,
and he remembered the exact date.
When this was played to him, he said
that this was a better performance
than the recording session. I felt at
this point that he should be made
aware of the noise problem. He agreed
to listen again, but this time he would
listen only to those things which were
disturbing to me. Having decided
upon the musical excellence of the
composition, I am sure he did not hear
a note of the music. He heard only
those sounds which were extraneous
and objectionable, and he indicated
his awareness by a glance at me and
a motion of his hand each time something of this sort was audible. Sure
that he now understood my point of
view, I awaited his verdict. He agreed
that the broadcast was very noisy and
that the recording session was quiet
but the broadcast was musically better.
The record to be released will be the
broadcast performance.
Approvals are given by a single
Rejections are usually
word, Bene.
accompanied by an explanation. Toscanini has always been his own severest
critic. He consistently blames himself
for bad performances, sometimes remarking that they sound like another
conductor. Once in a while, a recording will be acceptable if one small part
of it can be corrected. Can a wrong
note be changed, or a certain passage
be made cleaner? Sometimes this can
be done if it has been played properly
in a rehearsal.
On two occasions
when such corrections were successfully made, he has paid me the supreme compliment of saying that I
could do what Toscanini could not do.
Of all the Red Seal artists whose recorded tapes I have worked on, and
-
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With Fairchild 826 matching transformer, this
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MAIL ORDERS: 37 W. 65th St., New York 23, N.
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48 W. 48th St., 212 Fulton St..
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HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
there have been many, Toscanini's
performances have required the least
splicing and editing. They are usually
either wholly good, or they are wholly
bad, but to him, the ability to correct a
note or a phrase by a simple insert of
the kind known even to amateur tape
enthusiasts is a miracle, and his gratitude is sincere.
The conclusion of the musical portion of every listening session consists of Maestro's talking about events
relating to the music just heard. Sometimes he tells us about the first time
this particular composition was performed, often by himself. Sometimes
he recalls amusing incidents about certain artists of whom he is reminded by
the music. These reminiscences could
constitute a library. Always, he begs
my pardon for causing me so much
work. I have left him many times at
the conclusion of our work with tears
in my eyes and a feeling of great gratitude for the privilege it has been to
work with him.
Maestro's daily living habits are
simple. He will often amuse himself
by playing the piano in his study and
singing excerpts of operas, some of
which have been obsolete for fifty
years. His singing voice could not be
considered beautiful, but there is real
music in it. On warm, sunny afternoons he will occasionally go for a
ride in his limousine, insisting on
sitting in the front seat beside Dominick, his chauffeur. The two of them
will have a great time chatting away
like a couple of old cronies. Maestro
likes to walk in the open air, and he will
often leave the car on some back road
in nearby Westchester, walk a half
mile or so, and return.
And there are the wonderful evening
musicales which are held at irregular
intervals in Villa Pauline. Various of
the members of the NBC Symphony
have formed small string groups, giving freely and willingly of their time
and talents so that their beloved
Maestro may enjoy the sound of live
music in his own home. Such evenings
are memorable occasions. A few of
Maestro's close friends are invited,
and it is quite easy to conjure up the
vision of an eighteenth- century drawing room. Mozart and Beethoven
seem to be the favorites for the Riverdale musicales. After the musical portion of the evening, a delicious and
elaborate Italian dinner is served. Then
comes conversation and recorded music
lasting far into the night, with Maestro
Continued on page 123
APRIL 1956
MUSIC LISTENER'S
BOOKSHOP
TIME -SAVING SERVICE TO OUR READERS. WE ATTEMPT
TO SEND YOU THE BOOKS YOU ORDER BY RETURN MAIL.
Just send the coupon with your remittance.
A
Binders are now in stock for Volumes 5a,
and 5b.
BEST SELLERS
The New HIGH FIDELITY HANDBOOK:
Irving Greene and James Radcliffe.
250 illustrations, diagrams and plans.
A complete practical guide for the
purchase, assembly, installation, maintenance, and enjoyment of high fidelity
music systems.
No. 200
$4.95
edited by
Roy H. Hoopes, Jr. Introduction by
John M. Conly. An anthology of outstanding articles originally appearing
in HIGH FIDELITY Magazine covering various aspects of the high fidelity
phenomenon. Among the contributors
are Charles Fowler, Roy Allison,
Fernando Valenti, Peter Bartok, Emory
Cook, and David Sarser.
THE HIGH FIDELITY READER:
$3.50
No. 155
-A
first
volume of record reviews -classical music and the spoken word -from HIGH
FIDELITY Magazine. Edited by Roland Gelatt.
HIGH FIDELITY RECORD ANNUAL
$4.95
No. 201
Binders
Binder 6A now available
-
We have on hand a limited supply of
Binder Number 3
which holds six copies
of HIGH FIDELITY. Special clearance
price
$2.00.
-
LIFE AND WORKS OF WOLFGANG
AMADEUS MOZART IN PICTURES. Printed
in Switzerland. A beautiful addition to
THE
the music -lover's library. 225 pages of
pictorial history with explanatory text.
$12.00
Number 207
RECORD INDEX - 1954:
Complete alphabet-
ical listings by composer or collection -title
of all the classical and semi -classical, jazz
and spoken word record reviews contained
in HIGH FIDELITY Magazine in 1954.
Discographies included.
RECORD
GUIDE,
$7.50
No. 206
BINDERS
FOR
HIGH
FIDELITY
Magazine:
Red Leatherette, gold stamped on front
and backbone. Each binder holds 6 issues.
50c each.
(Revised Edition);
Edward Tatnall Canby. 302 pages, illustrated. This popular guide to high
fidelity has been completely revised. Home
Music Systems explains the operation of a
radio -phonograph, where to buy the
separate parts, and how to house them.
One chapter is devoted to suggested combinations of equipment.
HOME MUSIC SYSTEMS
$3.95
No. 151
Edward SackvilleWest and Desmond Shawe -Taylor.
Enlarged and completely revised edition.
Both a catalogue and critical review of
long -play records available in England,
listing the British record number. Full of
details of many special recordings not included in the ordinary published lists.
THE
$2.75 each
$2.75
Roland
THE FABULOUS PHONOGRAPH:
Gelatt. A history of the phonograph tracing its progress from Thomas Edison's
curious tin -foil apparatus to the astounding high fidelity sound systems of today.
As one of this country's outstanding music critics, Roland Gelatt has a keen ap
preciation of the phonograph's importance.
As a sensitive social historian, he has a
discerning eye for the flavorful fact, or
the pungent quotation that sets a scene
and illuminates an era.
$4.95
No. 154
Book Department
HIGH FIDELITY Magazine
Great Barrington, Mass.
for which please send me, postpaid, the books indicated by
the circled numbers below. (No C.O.D.'s or charge orders, please.)
Foreign orders sent at buyer's risk. Add 55c for postage on foreign orders.
I enclose $
151
Binders:
154
155
3, Sa, 5b, 6a.
200
201
206
207
Record Index 1954
NAME
ADDRESS
CITY
ZONE
STATE
1
2I
mina!
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1956 AUDIO GUIDE
-
shipping charges collect.
Prices are net
deposit, balance
Send full remittance or 25%
orders under $5.00, send full
On
COD. Please
charges. Any
remittance with estimated shipping
overpayment will be refunded.
protected against
GUARANTEE: You are fully
arrives in damaged
any financial loss if any part
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HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
RIVERDALE PROJECT
Continued from page 121
JANSZIEN
very much at the center of affairs. He
fairly sparkles at such times, and I
know they are a tonic to him.
Arturo Toscanini's musical life has
real
high fidelity
music
made easyYou no longer need to under-
stand the complications of high
fidelity sound systems to have
the very finest music in your
home. MusiCraft experts will
recommend the best combination of components in your price
range and demonstrate them in
an atmosphere like that of your
own living room.
We will handle all or any part
of a high fidelity installation ...
from supplying a single component to designing special cabinet
work or built-in construction
detail. We are also prepared to
work with your architect or interior decorator.
48 East
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11
Oak
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COMPONENTS AND COMPLETE INSTALLATIONS
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APRIL 1956
been composed of two parts: opera
and symphony. There is a third broad
phase which he has barely touched
upon: chamber music. Thus far, he
has refused all suggestions that he
interest himself creatively in this field,
but there are many of us who are
hoping against hope that one day
Maestro will pick up his baton and
again give to the world of his genius.
Chamber music he loves. It could be
recorded in his home, and at his convenience. Maestro occasionally complains about failing vision, but when
there is a musical droblem to be
settled he will reach for a score and
settle it. Certainly, his brain and his
hearing are those of a young man.
And that about brings us up to the
present moment in the two years of
Arturo Toscanini's retirement. He is
in New York. He is well. He is
working.
RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE
Continued from page CI
the public? Not completely, I am
afraid.
Obviously, until manufacturers feel some pressure in the form
of frank criticism, they are not likely
to take the matter very seriously.
Even more important is the attitude
of the consumer. I do not know at the
moment what that is, on the whole.
One might assume that if there were
any great clamor on the part of the
public the manufacturers would have
heard it, and that in the absence of any
clamor either the problem must not
be great or the public must not much
care. A record dealer of my acquaintance said he did not feel that the problem of damage was particularly worrisome, in terms of the percentage of
records he had to return to factories
for replacement. (He indicated it was
about one per cent.) But I am not
sure anyone really knows how the
record -buying public feels. I suspect
there are a great many blemished records sold whose purchasers never
bother to return them to the dealer
because the blemishes seem rather
slight or because the purchaser's own
Continued on next page
"possibly the
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High
Fidelity,
Nov. '55
LISTEN!
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no
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No coloration
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on this amazing speaker.
JANSZEN Laboratory Inc.
Dept. H -4, 69 Harvey
SI.,
Cambridge, Mass.
J A N S ZE N
I23
RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE
Continued from preceding page
-
I
How good
will your
new tape
I
k
\
N
1
recorder be?
One of the answers lies in the quality
of the magnetic recording head
basic and important part of all
recorders. The better the head, the
better the performance you can
expect. A Shure magnetic recording
head insures a unit constructed to
close tolerances
precision specifications
optimum performance
of your recorder.
-a
...
...
An outstanding example is the
"Micro- Gap," a new, high quality
magnetic recording head specifically
designed for use in professional studio
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It provides excellent response over
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long operating life at maximum
efficiency. For home recordings of
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...
data recording equipment, the
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The "Micro -Gap" is the latest of the
Shure family of fine -quality magnetic recording heads. When a tape
recorder manufacturer announces a
model equipped with any of them,
you can be assured of the high quality of the tape recorder
for the
choice of a Shure head is proof that
the manufacturer is giving you the
...
very best.
Pioneers in Magnetic Recording
Since 1939
SHURE BROTHERS, Inc.
225 West Huron Street, Chicago 10, Illinois
1
24
-
is low.
sensitivity
or gumption
There are plenty of Caspar Milquetoasts, I suspect, who would hesitate
to complain no matter how deeply
grieved. I hate doing so myself.
There is also the problem of record
dealers who still adhere to the old time practice of discouraging exchanges
or refunds, in which circumstances the
unless he wants
consumer is helpless
to take his trade elsewhere. And the
public, it is certain, is becoming steadily fussier. A record collector with
high -quality reproducing apparatus
wants high -quality records. The margin for error and carelessness is bound,
therefore, to become steadily smaller,
and lapses tolerated until now will
draw more fire. The time when something has to be done about them may
not be too far off.
Of course it may be that by then
the mass production of prerecorded
magnetic tape will have made the
whole matter academic. Meanwhile,
however, it seems to me that the exacting record buyer is entitled to more
consideration than he has been accorded. And that he should make
himself heard if he doesn't get it.
J"GOLDEN SERIES"
HIGH FIDELITY
Custom
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Cite
MODEL HF255
eft t'Qite AM -FM
TUNER
Provides exceptional AM -FM reception, true high fidelity realism with
"space- saver" convenience and beauty
at remarkably low cost. FM response,
± 0.5 db, 20 to 20,000 cycles; AM, ± 4
db, 20 to 5,000 cycles. Sensitivity FM5 microvolts for 20 db of quieting:
:
AM -20 microvolts for volt output.
includes AFC, drift -compensated
circuits, FM di -pole antenna, AM
1
ferrite loop, etc. Only 31/2" high. Ideal
for use with amplifier below.
POST -ULTIMATE
AMPLIFIER
Continued from page 64
MODEL 1512
As yet there has been no opportunity
to make complete, detailed measurements of performance, other than those
of listening tests. The output capabilities of the tubes are about to watts
each, giving a hypothesized output of
up to 38o watts continuous rating, or
760 watts peak. Since the author disapproves of excesses in audio gadget eering (remember, the music is the
main thing!), he did not project performance- factors beyond these points.
A 76o -watt peak should satisfy the
most avid music -lover.
It is calculated that the distortion
content of the amplifier will be unmeasurable up to overload. Frequency
response should be audibly good down
to the lowest limits of human hearing.
At the high end, the response rises
from zo kc up to about 21.5 megacycles, due to the high- frequency oscillation. This has been established by
observation of interference with the IF
channels of television sets.
It is in listening tests though, where
Continued on page 126
12 -WATT
HIGH FIDELITY AMPLIFIER
True hi -fi performance at moderate
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± 0.5 db, 20 to 20,000 cps. Features 5
inputs; separate bass, treble controls;
equalization for EUR, ffrr, RIAA,
Quiet variable damping control, choice
of volume control or loudness control.
In compact cabinet, only 31/2" high.
;
BEAUTIFUL "SPACE SAVER" DESIGN
RAULAND matching Hi -Fi
units are decorator -styled in
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panels in soft brushed brass. Designed to fit anywhere -no cabinets required. (Extension shafts
available for behind -panel
ñ
T1i¡
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mount.)
Hear these RAULAND units at your
Hi -Fi dealer, or write for details
RAULAND -BORG CORPORATION
3515 W. Addison St., Dept.
F,
Chicago 18, III.
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
PROFESSIONAL
CALIFORNIA
DI RECTORY
NEW YORK
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OH10
AIREX
RADIO
CORP.
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Phone: RYan 1-8171
536
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Includes a full line of hi -fi equipment. Send us your requirements.
Fair Oaks, Pasadena 1, Calif.
CINCINNATI AND TITI'
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IN
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COMPETENT ENGINEERING
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GRanite 8-2834
the finest in Hi -Fi
BOHN MUSIC SYSTEMS CO.
7 -8569
550 Fifth Ave., N. Y. 36
CRAIG AUDIO LAB
HIGH FIDELITY COMPONENTS
thoroughly bench tests all units
before selling. Lowest net prices.
We pay shipping within U.S.A.
SOUND
CORPORATION
12
W.
Olympic Blvd.
L.A. 15, Calif.
RI
70271
FOR RCA HI- FIDELITY
Sets
Components
Color TV
Radio Victrolas Tape Recorders
Records Cabinets Kits
Compare all leading makes
Terms
Trade -Ins.
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Rochester 7, N. Y.
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PL
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DELAWARE VALLEY HDQTRS.
In
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PITTSBURGH and the
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WOLK'S HIGH FIDELITY CENTER
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306 Diamond Street
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1
-0220
CANADA
Since 1944
LITHE
CANADA'S FIRST
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Minn
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UT TAUS
A.
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For the first time the complete
story of the phonograph its invention and development. As one of
this country's outstanding music
critics, the author has a keen appreciation of the phonograph's
aesthetic role
and as a historian
he traces the phonograph's development from Thomas Edison's
curious tin -foil apparatus to the
astounding high fidelity sound
systems of today,
Roland Gelatt, New York editor
of HIGH FIDELITY Magazine, put
years of research into the making
of this sensitive authoritative book.
Published by J. B. Lippincott
Send $4.98 for your copy TODAY.
-
CONSTRUCTION Of EINER
CONTEMPORARY AMERICAN
PHONOGRAPH"
by Roland Gelait
.y
7460 MELROSE AVENUE
Los
TELEVISION CENTRE
FABULOUS
Co.
aDCATIO
-E- Ea
EVERYTHING IN HIGH FIDELITY
3
ALLIED HIGH FIDELITY STUDIOS
100 N. Western Ave., Chicago 80, III.
HAymarket
1
-6800
2025 W. 95th St., Chicago 43, III.
BEverly 8-1067
602 Davis St., Evanston, Ill.
DAvis 8 -8822 SHeldrake 3-6233
HIGH FIDELITY Magazine
The Publishing House,
Great Barrington, Mass.
Please send me, by return mail, a copy of
"The Fabulous Phonograph." $4.95 enclosed
sorry, no C.O.D.'S.
NAME
ADDRESS
--
-
Stromberg -Carlson "Custom 400"
Brociner Freei- Eisemann
Bogen
Fisher Radio
Concertone Tape Recorder
All Makes of High Fidelity Records
e[IQHn &surd aosd Viáious I.I,I.
390 EGLLNTON WEST
TORONTO, ONT.
Phone HUdson 9-2117
IN CANADA-
-
-
There's one place where you can find
and
hear
all your high -fidelity equipment needs.
We carry a complete stock ... come in, or write
in, for a chat, a look, and a listen.
LECTRO'UO10E
SOUND SYSTEMS
141
Dundas St.; West, TORONTO
GREAT BRITAIN
I!I[ITISH HI -FI
The widest selection of all top makes of
British High Fidelity reproducing equipment available. We ship to any part of the
world. Send for Special Export Catalogue.
cogai ssz a
ELECTRICAL CO. LTD.
ADDISCOMBE ROAD,
CROYDON, SURREY, ENGLAND
352 -364 LOWER
APRIL 1956
125
www.americanradiohistory.com
POST -ULTIMATE
AMPLIFIER
\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\
Continued from page 124
the
Post -Ultimate amplifier really
Direct comparison with the
loudest known sounds
rivet guns
and pneumatic drills
reveals that
the system is every bit as loud as the
original and every bit as offensive a
true test of what we almost dare to
call ultra -fidelity. This is true presence
the ability to re- create not only the
original sound, but also the original
feeling and impression. I am convinced
that a new era in sound reproduction
has been opened by this design, and
that all present equipment will ultimately be discarded in favor of the
Why is one diamond needle
shines.
better than another?
All diamond needles are not really alike. The difference is in the polishing. For even the slightest
microscopic burr can feather -cut the delicate record
-
grooves.
That is why every Duotone diamond tip has been
polished 15,000 times -never less -to absolute concentricity by Duotone's radius control method. It
will protect your records longer.
Look for the Duotone polisher's picture and certifitation in every Duotone Diamond Needle package. It is your assurance of a diamond needle that
will protect your records. The Duotone Company,
Keyport, N. J., Manufacturer. In Can., Chas. W.
Pointon, Toronto. Exp. Div., Ad Auriema, New York.
P -U.
EQUAL RIGHTS
Continued from page 59
r
O\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\
Frame after one in the Museum of Modern Art
+;u
Pi
MUSCLES DON'T MAKE MUSIC
Great music, superbly rendered, draws life
and warm beauty from the teamwork
of the true artist's heart and
hands. Precise coordination
not
of mind and body
is the secret of
muscular power
artistic accomplishment.
-
-
Newcomb compact amplifiers and tuners give you
that all- important elec-
tronic teamwork- designedin. They have no over po
no
red,
"inflated"
parts
trick gadgets "hung
Great performance is faithfully recreated in
On or sales -talk purposes.
F
the full brilliance of original rendition by eleccircuit through cabitronic teamwork in high fidelityknd sy,
Newcomb hi -fi system
components are tailored to true balance, to inter-relationship
and interaction as precise and coordinated as the fingers and
feelings of the musical artist. Only through such thorough
integration can you be assured the utmost in listening pleasure.
for the best in home hi-fi, look to Newcomb
-
Ask your dealer to demonstrate
the new Compact Series of
amplifiers and tuners
NEWCOMB
1937
of Quality
she Sound
Since
NEWCOMB, Dept. W-4
6824 Lexington Ave., Hollywood 38, Calif.
Enclosed is 25c for booklet "Hi-Pi Is
for Everybody."
Send name nearest Newcomb dealer
and details on Newcomb Compact.
name
.
_
address
city
--
state .........__....
soft tympani and snare drum work, can
come alive. Microphones serving the
strings or brass are of little assistance
to the percussion section in cases like
these.
Another point of interest to engineers is that during the recording,
the bass drum should never be anywhere near the tympani if they have
passages to play in unison. The bass
drum negates the tympani, overshadowing its sound and pitch. Why it
should, I do not know, but it does.
Two key aspects of the percussionists' problem remain to be discussed. One is the importance to the
classical percussion section and to the
composer (if he will allow) of the
contributions to the art of percussion
that have been made by the jazz drummer. A large part of what new and
uniquely idiomatic writing for percussion has been done in this half century is owed to influences on composers from the jazz world. I cite, for
diverse examples, Milhaud's Creation of
the World; Bartok's Concerto for Orchestra and Sonata for Two Pianos and
Percussion, and Leonard Bernstein's
Age of Anxiety. This impact of jazz
percussion on the classical composer
was particularly noticeable in the
19205 and has become evident again
within the past decade.
The jazz drummer has introduced
new techniques. He has demanded
and received better instruments. He
has developed a new and revolutionary
rhythmic style, what jazzmen call
"swinging." The classical drummer
could profit from attention to the
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
126
www.americanradiohistory.com
A
NE
NECORO
THE
The Citation, finest portable tape recorder in the
moderate -price field,
is as modern and handsome in design as it is
rich and clear in faithful
reproduction.
More important, the
Citation makes it possible
for you to afford professional levels of full
frequency and undistorted
with features
fidelity
usually found only in tape
recorders for professional
-
use.
Before you decide, see the
Citation. To be convinced,
hear the Citation.
Write for full information, or ask
your Magnecord dealer for a
demonstration. He's listed in the
classified telephone directory
under "Recorders."
¡llagnecord,inc.
1101 S. KILBOURN AVE.
CHICAGO 24, ILLINOIS
APRIL 1:956
-
rhythm and phrasing of the better jazz
Don Lamond, Louis Bell drummers
son, Art Blakey, Max Roach, Shelly
Manne, and Kenny Clark.
The jazz and /or dance drummer is,
I should make clear, not what I have
in mind as the optimum future classical
percussionist. Yet a useful present step
for the modern composer and classical
percussionist would be to absorb some
of the essence of jazz drumming, because the jazz drummer plays within
his organization and is at the pulsating
heart of it. Most "serious" composers,
on the other hand, seem to write percussion parts as an afterthought and,
therefore, they generally write for percussion outside the inner fabric of the
music.
The core of the general failure of
American composers thus far to write
creatively for percussion lies in their
inability to write with pulsation, not
only for percussion but in their writing
for the whole orchestra. The rhythms
(and the harmonic and melodic material
they accompany) that have come out of
America in jazz and in many of the
folk musical idioms are missing in
most American classical writing. The
reason is that most American cornposers are influenced by and try to
emulate their European elders (who
are, in many cases, their teachers,
since nearly all the prominent American composers have studied in Europe).
Gershwin, who has been very much
underrated, did have the ability to
convey this American rhythmic feeling.
He was able to infuse his music with a
feeling akin to that which exists when
a good musician improvises in a jazz
vein. And Gershwin will be influential
in the years to come. Indeed, he is
now. Porgy and Bess has caused excitement all over the world because it is
so American in its music, so underivative of European models.
But most other American composers
have a basically European conception
of American music, it seems to me.
The source material the American composer should most intensively investigate and experience now is American
jazz. The work of the best of the jazzmen, to judge from its percussion content, has much of value for the
serious composer in search of new
modes of expression. In a score he
cannot, of course, simulate an improvised Louis Armstrong or Charlie
Parker solo, but he can incorporate
into his writing a degree of the feeling
of improvised jazz, and to some exContinued on next page
1
PRESS
T1
COMMENT
"Aikí71 tic
"The AR -1W woofer gives the cleanest
bass response I ever have heard."
(Edward Tatnall Canby)
AUDIO
"
.. the highs impressed me immediately
as very lovely, smooth, unprepossessing, mu-
sical (for music) and unusually natural. No
super -hi -fi screech and scratch ... As to the
lows ... I was no end impressed, from the
first time I ran my finger over a pickup stylus
and got that hearty, wall -shaking thump that
betokens real bottom bass to the time when
I had played records and tapes on the speaker
for some months on end."
THr
/!1/!011
(B. H. Haggin)
.. achieves the seemingly impossible;
a
real and clearly defined bass in a cabinet only
14 by 113/8 by 25 inches in size."
RADIO
-
(J. M. Krech)
the full range of bass,
even the pedal iones of the organ, cleanly
and spectacularly ... shook the concrete reenforced floors of the Hotel New Yorker..."
1E1.1:I:WININII:S
'
... reproduced
The SaturdgReuiete
(R. S. Lanier)
into the low, low bass with
exemplary smoothness and low distortion. It
is startling to hear the fundamentals of low
organ notes come out, pure and undefiled,
from a box that is two feet long and about
a foot high."
... goes down
High 3ideliig
"... a woofer that
(Roy Allison)
works exceptionally
well because of its small size, not ih spite
of it
I have heard clean extended bass
like this only from enclosures that were at
least six or seven times its size."
...
THE AUDIO LEAGUE REPORT
(Oct., 'S5) Pleasantville, N. Y.
"Speaker systems that will develop much
less than 30% distortion at 30 cycles are
few and far between. Our standard reference
speaker system,* the best we've ever seen,
has about 5% distortion at 30 cycles."
The AR -I
The AR -1 speaker system, in mahogany
or birch, is $185. Suggested driving power,
at least 30 watts. Literature on request from
Dept. H.
ACOUSTIC RESEARCH, INC.
23 Mt. Auburn St., Cambridge 38, Mass.
I 27
EQUAL RIGHTS
Continued from preceding page
rurtappg
e¢iiIlar;Enn
With no need for occult advice on selecting a pickup, her former clients
now consult The Audio League Report. This authoritative publication rates
the ESL Professional and Concert Series cartridges as "by far the finest
tent he can incorporate the way the
jazzman phrases and the way he selects
his notes.
The American composer, if he wants
to catch his rhythm for himself, must
naturally first go to the pulsating
source, learn more about percussion,
particularly the varied art of the jazz
drummers. When he is able to capture
the "swing" of American jazz in his
writing for the whole orchestra
including percussion
then the legendary and much joked -about "American
Symphony" may finally come to life.
-
-
phonograph reproducing instruments.''*
You're missing plenty until you switch to the sensational new ESL,
the world's most advanced cartridge. Your dealer has it now.
L
F O R
I
S T E N
I
N G
AT ITS
BEST
Electro -Sonic Laboratories, Inc.
35 -54 Thirty -sixth Street
Concert Series $35.95
Soloist Series from $14.95
*Authorized quotation N. zt. Please consult Vol. t, Nos. 6-7
N. Y., for the complete technical and subjective report.
41o4m -4 -Top
&
to
Professional Series arm and cartridge $106.50
(A1arch -April
&
Puklucts Ca.
1600 West 25th St.
Long Island City 6, N.Y.
Nov. 1955) of The Audio League Report, Pleasantville,
FOR
Cleveland 13, Ohio
HIGH - FIDELITY
Racon Electric Company, Inc.
1261 BroadwayNew York 1, New York
SKEPTICS!
Gentlemen:
This is a report on a number of tests we have run on the Racon 15 -HTX, 15' tri -axial
Loudspeaker and here is what we found:
We started off playing records that went down to 16 cps and went up to 20,000 cps,
using a Rondine B -12 -H turntable, an Electrosonic professional cartridge and the
Interelectronic Model Coronation 400 40 watt amplifier. This amplifier is the one
I spoke to you about. It has a frequency response range from 16- 35,000 CPS.
We found that the speaker responded very nicely. So then we took a Cook
Frequency record to find out if we had any peaks and found that we didn't
have any. We were overjoyed.
Write for Free
We then used an Audio Oscillator and it turned out to be very
Literature
better than any speaker we've tried. This included a 15
good
, with a cross -over network and tweeter and
inch
-
*
a
The final test we made was with a vacuum voltmeter and an Oscilloscope.
We found that the Racon 15 -HTX speaker will
respond without any distortion from 18 to
22,000 cps, which in my estimation indicates
you can't purchase a better speaker on
the market today.
You have my permission to use any
DATA: 15HTX
part of this letter in any of your
POWER: 25 Walls
advertisements.
IMP: 8 ohms
Yours truly,
RES. FRED: 24 cps.
Chester Drozdz
FLUX: 14,500 gauss
FORM -A -TOP
RESPONSE: 20-20,000 cps.
PRODUCTS
CROSSOVER: 2000 and 5000 cps.
fii;
CO.
WEIGHT:
23 lbs
PRICE: $109.50 audiophile nel
ACOUSTICAL
EXCELLENCE
*Speakers ranging in price
from $144 to $245.
SOUND
Continuedfrom page S7
This quotation is of additional value
to the scholar in that it urges immediate
revision of present -day estimates of
the approximate date of the advent of
the Japanese -made pocket microscope
and, for that matter, of its inventor.
As for hi -fi addicts themselves,
Shakespeare unquestionably knew
many. But his opinion of one specific
type
the dyed -in- the -wool sound hound, the lover of sonus gratia Boni
or sound for sound's sake
stands
out above all. Shakespeare says of him:
-
-
-
Lucentio: Preposterous ass, that
never read so far to
know the cause why
music was ordain'd!
-Taming of the Shrew, III, i, 9 -Io.
We need not worry that Shakespeare
was overly upset by members of this
class, since we can easily credit him
with intelligence enough to have
avoided them. But one form of propinquity which he necessarily suffered
commands our sympathy. I allude
now, of course, to his mate Anne
Hathaway, who like many a modern
hi -fi wife was either actually opposed
to her husband's hobby or at best indifferent to it.
Gentlemen, there can be no doubt
whatsoever regarding the posterity
Shakespeare had in mind when he
dipped his pen to write the following:
Cloten:
I
have assail'd her with mu-
sics, but she vouchsafes no
able.
notice.
-Cymbeline, II, iii, 44-45.
1261 Broadway, New York 1, N. Y.
EXPORT
401
128
-
JOSEPH PLASENCIA, INC.
N. Y., N. Y.
Broadway,
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
Sm:
About a week ago I made the mistake
of buying a pickup which is advertised as being able to track LPs at 3
grams needle pressure. Since I installed it I have not been able to play
a single LP record side all the way
through without the sound getting distorted. Sometimes it even skips
grooves when the music isn't very
small water -color paint brush dipped
The accumulation of
in alcohol.
material that gathers on the stylus
is likely to be fairly tough in con ristancy, so brushing with a dry stylus
brush is usually not enough to remove
it, and the pickup's light weight is
insufficient to push the stylus through
the wad of wax into the groove.
tried making the pickup heavier,
but then the stylus flops over to one
side and it sounds terrible all the time.
I've had it back to the dealer three
times and he tries it out on their
records and it works fine. It only does
it on my own records. The third time,
I took some of my own records to
the dealer and he tried them with
my pickup and sure enough they distorted after a few minutes of playing.
He told me my records were dirty and
should be washed, but I have treated
them all with anti -static fluid and wipe
them with a damp cloth before each
play. I can't see any dust on them.
What's the matter? Does this happen to everyone who buys a lightweight pickup or should I have a personal persecution complex?
William Bristow
Cahuenga Blvd.
Los Angeles, Calif.
An excess of dust is the most common
source of this trouble with lightweight pickups. But since you have
ruled out this possibility, it is probable
that excessive use of an inferior brand
of anti -static compound has filled the
grooves with a greasy residue which
collects on the stylus and lifts it out
after a few minutes of playing.
The best solution to this is to wipe
each of your LP records, while it
revolves on the turntable, with a wad
of clean surgical cotton soaked in pure
grain alcohol, and then wipe each surface immediately afterwards with a dry
wad of cotton. This should remove
most of the contamination from the
surface of the disks, but it should not,
under any circumstances, be applied
to shellac records.
Then, each time the pickup becomes
contaminated, clean the stylus with a
n
_
tn o
lD
N
SIR:
have been told that some power
amplifiers become unstable at the
high- frequency end when capacitance
is bridged across the output leads, and
was advised by a friend of mine to
use as little cable as possible between
my amplifier and speaker. This was
to keep down the capacitance effects
between the two wires in the cable.
But since my system is in the dining
room and I like to listen in the living
room, I had to use more than twenty
feet of cable, and was told that was
too much.
I noticed, though, that TV twin lead cable is advertised as being low capacitance, so I used that and it seems
to be working very well. My friend
tested my system with square waves
and he said the TV lead -in cable was
not causing instability.
TV cable is also easy to run from
one room to the other because it lies
flat under the carpet and doesn't show
through as a ridge.
Orlando M. Sakerr
W. 32nd St.
Brooklyn, N. Y.
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rSIR:
A few
months back a reader complained of a tone arm which tilted
the cartridge sideways, and a few suggestions were given on the subject
of leveling turntables and tone arms.
I
have been bothered with that
problem also, and I believe I know
what is the trouble. On some tone
arms you will find a height adjustment.
In an effort to put the tone arm as
low as possible and thus keep the
cartridge as level as possible along its
axis, another error is often made
Continued on next page
tir
n
W
dn3Ñ
`°
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-+
uidu.
P
o,
I 29
APRIL X956
www.americanradiohistory.com
AUDIO FORUM
Continued from preceding page
which is not mentioned in the manufacturer's literature
for my arm
at least. The angle of deviation from
level (of the head) describes an arc
as the head is raised and lowered, and
the tone arm must be adjusted so that
the middle of the arc (level position)
is effective at record height. If the
arm is set too high, the cartridge will
tilt to the outside, while if it is set
too low, the reverse applies.
A question: how might I go about
fusing my loudspeaker system? I don't
like the idea of hooking a 20 -watt
amplifier to a To -watt speaker, and
would feel better about it if I had
the speaker protected from damage.
John D. Roberts
Route 2
Jacksonville, Ala.
-not
t
All in one great new
handbook... everything
you should know before buying, installing
or even listening to
a hi -fi set
NO This up -to- the -minute guide
is
packed with just the information you
want: experts' pick of components the
best buys at every price
practical advice on installation, maintenance and repair tape, TV tuners binaural sound
the first listing of the 100 finest hi-fi
recordings. Everything helpfully illustrated with photographs. Ask for HI -FI
by Martin Mayer, $2.95 at all bookstores.
Published by RANDOM HOUSE.
-
-
-
-
-
WVi
,
V
LQW l/Vl
FREE!
S
dt
4
NEWARK'S 1956 CATALOG
and see the newest developments in
tuners, amplifiers, tape recorders,
record changers and speakers. 260
pages of everything you need in High
Fidelity, Radio, TV and Electronics.
I1WARI
ip
223 W. Madison, Chicago 6, III.
WEST COAST BRANCH
4736 W. Century Blvd., Inglewood, Calif.
It is one thing to hear a few
bars of a sonata
whets the
appetite of the connoisseur and
gives him a foretaste of future
enjoyment. But to hear half of a
complete symphony is more than
disappointing.
Yet, you can play a recording from
end to end and you can't hear ALL the
music unless your hi -fi equipment
includes a KELLY Ribbon "tweeter' ''.
Then, you can be sure that you've heard
EVERYTHING that's on the reco-d
so,
for music's sake, add a KELLY
.
made
-it
.
R
Where I is the fuse rating in amperes, P is r1/2 the rated power of the
speaker in watts, and R is its rated
impedance in ohms.
For a single -unit speaker, the fuse
should be of the value calculated, or
the next largest size, in a standard speed type.
For multiple systems, use the following fusing arrangement:
the
woofer fuse should be as calculated,
in a standard high -speed type, but the
tweeter fuse should be a slow -blow
type, with its value calculated from
the above formula using as the power
rating a figure % that of the rated
power of the entire speaker system.
If there is a mid -range speaker, its
fuse should be calculated using a
power value equal to 2/ the power
rating of the system, and should also
be a slow -blow type.
The fuses should be inserted in
series with one of the leads which
goes to each individual driver unit,
locating them thus between the
divider network output and each
speaker being driven by it.
SIR:
I have a
..
.
in
England!
SPECIFICATIONS
Frequency response
-3000-20,0000 cps
Horn loading
1000 cps cutoff
Dimensions-81/2" x
51/2" x 41/2"
Force mass ratio
:'"'
-
-
4 x 107 dynes /gm.
Audiopf ile
$8995
va
complete with
crossover network
Write for complete information
KELLY..9 UHF
reproducer.
AT LEADING HI -FI MUSIC CENTERS
ERCONA CORPORATION
(Electronic Division)
-
ELECTRIC COMPANY
Dept. H-4
part...what?
net
Thanks for taking the trouble to send
us your answer to this problem of the
tilting arm.
To calculate the required current
rating for a speaker-protection fuse,
use the formula:
I-
Q
High Fidelity
part
question concerning a preamplifier with input level -set controls.
551 Fifth Ave., Dept.
H
-4
New York, N. Y.
New ENGINEERING DESIGN!
New LUXURY STYLING!
New MUSICAL ENJOYMENT!
MIRAPHON
X11/11-110A
Manual Record Player
TRANSCRIPTION- QUALITY FEATURES
Rubber Constant -speed 4 -pole motor
molted, balanced turntable
Special Spring
mounts
Plug -in head
3 -speed drive
Ball- bearing -mounted tone arm PLUS
ALL THE PERFORMANCE- PROVED BASIC RECORD PLAYING FEATURES OF THE WORLD RENOWNED MIRACORD XA -100.
At High Fidelity Dealers Everywhere
$37.50
Shipped completely assembled with all plugs
and leads attached, ready for operation.
with GE RPX -050A Cartridge
$44.50
AUDIOGERSH CORPORATION
N. Y.
WOrth 4-8585
Canada: Atlas Rodio Corp., Ltd. Taranto, Canada
23 Park Place, New York 7,
In
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
TELEFUNKEN ELITE
/FM/ PORTABLE Hl-F/
SYSTEM
FM, Standard and Short Wove broad-
plug -in for phono, tape recorder and additional external speaker.
casts
Should the 2 or 3 o'clock control
setting be used, with additional attenuation by the input level control?
Or should the volume control be run
at the 8 or 9 o'clock setting, with the
input level control on the back turned
full up?
I feel that use of minimum amplification in the preamp helps to cut
down possible distortion of all kinds.
Is this correct? The preamp in question is the Heathkit WA -P2.
Are there any readers in the Stampede City area who would like to discuss hi -fi? Call 5 -5676 from 8 a.m. to
4 p.m. The name rhymes with Buick.
Heino Luik
1o16 Third St. NE
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
.
s TELEFUNKEN
HIGH FIDELITY
SYSTEMS
Imported by
AMERICAN
Dept. 35
ELITE.
7
INC.
Park Avenue
N. Y.
16, N. Y.
Write for details
NOW ULTIMATE
PERFECTION
IN TONE ARM PERFORMANCE
Ortho-sonic v/4
TRACKS COURSE OF ORIGINAL RECORDING STYLUS
VITAL ENGINEERING
PRINCIPLE SOLVED
!
Tryelìinu Error Eliminated
FLAWLESS REPRODUCTION ATTAINED.
Stylus moves in straight line from
edge to center as originally recorded.
INSPIRED DESIGN: Increases record
life
. fits smallest cabinet . . .
plays all size records ... no scratching possible
all popular cartridges fit.
NEVER BEFORE in the history of Hi -Fi
development has the introduction of
a single component created such
wide interest, laboratory and editorial endorsement.
Get ORTHO -SONIC V/4 with its 10
incomparable features. ONLY $44.50.
.
AT BETTER HI -FI
.
.
DEALERS EVERYWHERE
Write For Illustrated Literature
ORTHO -SONIC INSTRUMENTS, Inc.
66C Mechanic Street, New Rochelle, N. Y.
APRIL 1956
Your first guess was correct. The
volume control in most control
units (including the Heathkit WAP2 ) has at least one stage of tube
amplification preceding it in the circuit, so turning the volume control
down will, of course, have no effect
on the signal level that is being fed
into the preceding stage.
Consequently, if the input signal ti,
that preceding stage is very high, evert
though you use the volume control to
turn the sound down to where it is
bearable in the room, you will still be
feeding too high an input level into
the stage before the volume control.
You can't overload the volume control,
but you can overload the first stage
of the control unit by feeding too
much volume to it, even when the
volume you hear is very low.
It is partly for this reason that input level-set controls are included in
most control units. These permit the
level coming into the first stage to
be cut down to where it is well below
the overload point. Then the volume
control may be turned up further to
offset the loss in volume that takes
place in the level -set controls.
Some control units use, in place of
a volume control, a loudness control
which boosts bass and treble in increasing amounts as it is turned down.
It is a fact that as the volume of
sound in a room is lowered, the ear's
sensitivity to high and low frequencies
is reduced, and loudness controls are
designed to overcome this effect. ..
But the amount of boosting that
takes place in the loudness control
depends simply upon how far down
it is turned, not upon the actual volume in the room. So a separate input
Continued on next page
Keep Your
!Records Young!
No more brushing, spraying
or wiping records
Use the new
DIS-
CHARGER,
Now t00% better
than ever!
Imitated but not duplicated.
This tiny plastic device contains
a radioactive material which constantly ionizes the air in its vicinity,
drawing off the static electricity
generated by your records.
Static electricity causes records to
attract and hold dust. Use of the
Disc- Charger* eliminates the static
electricity and allows the stylus to pick
up the dust and clean the record in a
few plays. Records now no longer attract dust and stay clean and noise free.
gram
clips to any pickup arm.
See your local distributor,
or shipped postpaid, only . .
Each
$4850
MERCURY SCIENTIFIC
PRODUCTS CORP.
1725 W. 7th ST.
LOS ANGELES 17, CALIF.
*Pat. App. For
Brings Out The Best
In Your Hi Fi Set!
MRA7WH
Csrfridqe
NEWEST ADVANCE
IN MAGNETIC
CARTRIDGE DESIGN AND PERFORMANCE
Miratwin Variable Reluctance Magnetic Cartridge features unusual wide -range response
and sensitivity .
Faithfully and minutely
brings out the rich, full tones of today's
recordings!
LOADED WITH HI FI FEATURES
-
AT YOUR DEALER NOW
MST-2A
MIRATWIN Turnover
Cartridge with two Sapphire Styli
MST -20
.
.
.
!
$ ZZ 50
MIRATWIN Turnover
with Diamond Stylus
Cartridge
for Microgroove and
Stylus for Standard
Sapphire
$45.00
AUDIOGERSH CORPORATION
23 Park Place, New York 7, N. Y.
WOrth 4-8585
In Canada: Atlas Radio Corp.. Ltd. Toronto, Canada
13r
TESTED IN THE HOME BY HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
AUDIO FORUM
Rated BETTER Because...
Continued from preceding page
"Such performance is excellent; exceeded only
a very few units, all of which are much higher in price."
"The c .ntilever-stylus- armature construction is inherently capabb
of mo-e rough treatment than most moving-coil mechanisms."
"Will fit just about any American-made arm."
"Listening quality is very good, smooth and free of strain
even on heavily recorded passages."
by
"In terms of what
level control is a necessity with a
loudness control, so that it can be
operated in that part of its rotational
range where it introduces just the
correct amount of boost for a given
reproduced volume. Were the level set control lacking, the loudness control would have to be used turned
very far down, introducing far too
much boost at full room volume levels.
you receive per dollar spent,
the `500' is a noteworthy bargain."
$9.90
including 2
synthetic sapphire styli
(diamond styli extra)
Only
IIIIIIIIIIII;
SIR:
have a Scott Radio Laboratories
800B radio in which the tuner is not
I
LL
"500" MAGNETIC TURNOVER
CARTRIDGE
At leading hi -fi distributors; write for descriptive literature to:
RECOTON CORPORATION, 52 -35 Barnett Ave., Long Island City 4, N. Y.
..
Manufacturers of World- Famous Phonograph Styli.
working satisfactorily. It drifts and
is not as sensitive as it used to be,
even though I have had a new antenna
put up and the tubes checked.
Could one of the new tuners be
made to work into the Scott 800B system by plugging it in?
F. R. Paris
Star Route
Bodines, Pa.
Your poor FM reception is probably due
iris- alignment of the tuner section in
your Scott 800B receiver.
You should have a qualified radio serviceman go over your equipment with test
instruments, and then when its performance
has been brought up to its original level,
try it for a few weeks to see whether it is
sensitive enough to suit your requirements.
If it still does not bring in enough stations,
you could greatly increase its sensitivity by
the addition of an FM booster, which you
can purchase from any parts supply house.
The cable plugs into your radio
chassis are probably not the same as
the standard ones used in high -fidelity
to
equipment, so adding an external
tuner would involve some wiring
)nodi fications.
WHAT'S IN AN ENCLOSURE?
In the case of the Tannov G.R.F. Speaker
over 3o years' experience as pioneers of high
quality reproduction That's why this
unique horn type cabinet used with the
" Fifteen" Dual Concentric gives results
which have caused a sensation on both
sides of the Atlantic.
Designed as a complete system using the
exclusive Tannoy expanding source principle,
the G.R.F. once again shows that experience
and unremitting care, backed by the
latest production methods, have produced
a loudspeaker setting a standard
by which others are judged.
!
DIMENSIONS: Maximum front to rear 29
38
TANNOY (AMERICA) LTD
Pearl Street, New lurk {, X. Y., U.S.A.
TANNOY (CANADA) LTD
36 Wellington
I
32
Street East, Toronto 7, Ontario, Canada.
Maximum width 38"
\
Overall height 44'
TANNOY'
SIR:
When I am playing a record, it seems
as if the output from the mid -range
speaker drops, and I get a sputtering
sound from it. When this happens,
it seems as if the tweeter and woofer
outputs are increased. However, this
condition is intermittent. When it is
working all right, the output from all
three sounds equal; otherwise the midrange seems low, and the other two
accentuated.
I do not believe it is the cartridge,
for I have tried different ones and the
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
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speaker performance. BUILT -IN POWER for
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intermittent sputtering still occurs.
Also, I do not believe it is the amplifier,
for when I pull the cable from the
control unit input receptacle and turn
the volume all the way up, the outputs are all equal from the speakers.
I have even tried swapping the midrange driver with a couple of cone type
speakers, and it still happens.
Also, when using a GE cartridge, I
get a kind of high singing noise in the
speakers, but when I ground the turntable to a water pipe, the noise stops.
I am sure all this stems from the AC
lines and improper grounding. I also
get clicks and pops in the speaker when
I turn the turntable on and it shuts off.
I know an RC network across the
switch terminals would clear this up,
but I do not know the values.
I have a steady -state test record
which I use to test the response of this
system, and it indicates that the sputtering starts around 2,000 cycles and
goes down to around Soo cycles, but
only when I advance the volume control to a certain setting. Below this
setting the sound is quite clear and
pure.
$7950
Incomparable companion to the "CORONATION 400 ". EXCLUSIVE NEGATIVE FEEDBACK
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.sofa at your local dialer!
Write Dept. Il for literature
INTERELECTRONICS
2432 Grand Concourse
New York 58, New York
4w
HI-FI LITERATURE
HI -FI LOUDSPEAKERS and ENCLOSURES
bs Abraham It. Cohen
Itere is a long- needed, long- awaited hook. The
classic in the field of hi-fi literature!
The subject is covered so completely, that
every question any hi -fi enthusiast may ask
about high fidelity loudspeakers and enclosures
is answered in its information packed pages. The
book is .vnprenely aulhoritatire and brilliantly
written! The author is a recognized authority
a musician and an engineer who has been intimately connected with the field of loudspeaker
and rnelosure design.
The author's richly imaginative writing skill
and technical background has resulted in a hook
that is not only informative -- but is one which
is readily understandable and very interesting
as well. Hundreds of vivid and imaginative
illustrations bring each important point in
view to you resulting in maximum comprehension of t he subject.
The last chapter in the book is devoted to
blueprints showing how to build 18 loudspeaker
enclosures.
This is a MEIST book for every hi -fi enthusiast
. It will increase your pleasure in hi-fi
rvgxoduetion and enable you to select speakers
intelligently. We'll guarantee that you'll lore
it or your money back!
('at. Nn. 176. 36S pages, 5% -in. x 8h -in.
Hundreds of
Leather Finish MARCO Cover
only $4.60
illustrations
-
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Robert Hodges
5
Coronation 85
CONSOLETTE PREAMPLIFIER EQUALIZER
ift
fa.4
THE CLfiSS/C IN
North Harding Ave.
Chicago 25, Ill.
4554
HIGH FIDELITY SIMPLIFIED
bs
Your trouble it almost certainly in the
speaker system. Something is apparently
making the mid-range speaker cut in and
out, and the trouble it likely to he located
between the divider network and the midrange speaker unit.
Check for dry- soldered joints, or partially shorted leads. If thir doesn't show
up anything, remove the divider netu'ork
from the system and connect only the
If the
woofer to the amplifier output.
trouble does not recur, the guider network
is probably defective.
High -pitched hum from the GE pickup
is due to lack of grounding of the turntable or arm, and has nothing to do with
the mid -range speaker's difficulties.
A 0.05 Mfd, (oo volt capacitor across
the turntable's AC switch connections
should minimize .ru'itching clicks from it.
Harold
is
-
.
HOW TO SERVICE TAPE RECORDERS
by C. A.
'fells you what you
%
Sqq -in..
No. 16i
illus.
......Only
...
I derive many hours of unalloyed pleasure from reading your
very literate publication, I must say
that one aspect of it galls me.
Why, may I ask, do you persist in
putting record reviews on the page
backing the "Dialing Your Disks"
Continued on next page
APRIL 1956
52.90
GUIDE TO AUDIO REPRODUCTION
bs David Fidelman
comprehensive discussion of all of t he facets of
audio reproduction. Explains sound, hearing,
circuitry of pre -amps, amplifiers, cross -over
net works, testing of sound reproducing systems,
etc. For t he hi -fi fan wit h some technical background. A very helpful book.
A
148.
5411
pages.
Soft rosir, illustrated
While
Tuthill
need to know about the
tape recorder and its operation. Explains the
types of circuits, drive mechanisms, troubleshooting and repair. Soft Cover, 160 pp., fey,
('al. No.
SIR:
v oiler
the overall hi -fi guide for the hi -Ii fan.
More tban 50.11110 copies have been sold. Disrusws in understandable language what the hifi fan wants to know about sound, tuners,
changers, amplifiers. pickups, tape recorders,
and
speakers, etc. Its the perfect primer
NO OTHER
guide as to what to buy . .
1300K LIKE IT!
Cat. No. 142. 224 pages, 53' -in. x
Soft Cover, illus
$2.50
This
.t/ -in
x
only $3.50
RI DER books are available al electronic
parts distributors and in technical book
stores. If unavailable there order directly from
JOHN F. RIDER PUBLISHER, INC.
480 Canal St., New York 13, N.Y.
In Canada: Charles W. Pointon, Ltd.
6 Alcina Ave., Toronto, Ontario
133
www.americanradiohistory.com
AUDIO FORUM
A SOUND
INVESTMENT...
FOR
USE A
Continued from preceding page
QUALITY CRAFTED
DIAMOND STYLUS
only
Our skilled diamond craftsmen convert your present
needle to a genuine, unconditionally guaranteed diamond needle! Send or bring
your replaceable needle,
check or money order for
$ro. Specify either 33 Of 78
rpm. If desired, new shaft
supplied, $2.75 additional.
table? This is the section of your publication that I most often find myself
referring to, and I am piqued at the
fact that I cannot tear it out and tack
it on the wall without mutilating the
Recordings section, to which I also
refer from time to time.
What is the possibility of my buying some recent back copies of HIGH
FIDELITY, for the purpose of obtaining
some pages of "Dialing Your Disks"
that I can use to paper my study?
H. W. Crowder
Haverford Ave.
Bryn Mawr, Pa.
Back copies of most issues of HIGH
FIDELITY are available upon order,
at a cost of 5o cents per issue up to
and including the August 1955 one,
and 6o cents each for subsequent
issues.
DIAMOND STYLUS CO.
DEPT. HF1
31
WEST 47 STREET
N. Y. 36, N. Y.
However, if you can afford to wait
a few weeks, separate "Dialing Your
Disks" cards will be available for a
nominal, trifling sum, without record
reviews on the reverse side.
BRAINARD TUNER -AMPLIFIER
Every feature the experts specify, plus the exclusive Brainard Acoustic Balance Control. For
complete specifications write to Engineering
Department for Catalog
H -2.
ELECTRONICS
ralnar
8586 Santa Monica Blvd. /Los Angeles 46, California
SIR:
I have a
MIRACORD
XA-100
with PUSHBUTTON CONTROL
and the`'MAGIC WAND'SPINDLE
TWO in ONE!
(1) Pushbutton Autonatic Changer
(2) Pushbutton Manual Player
Nothing compares with MIRACORD
the
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See what you've been missing
Hear the
MIRACORD at your Dealer now!
.
-
$67.50
Shipped completely assembled with all plugs
and leads attached, ready for operation.
with
GE
RPX.050A Cartridge
$74.50
AUDIOGERSH CORPORATION
23 Park Place, New York 7, N. Y.
In Corroda: Arlos Radio Corp., Lid.
WOrth 4-8585
Toronto, Canada
problem which seems to
have no answer, so I'm asking your
assistance in solving it.
About eight months ago I traded in
my 12 -inch coaxial speaker for one of
better quality. Since then I have had
five replacement speakers. It seems
that, after a little use, the tweeter stops
working altogether. After the first two
speakers went bad I thought it might
possibly be due to a defect in their
manufacture, but after the third, fourth,
and fifth went out on me, I began to
doubt that.
The power rating of the speaker is
20 watts continuous, and 3o watts on
peaks. Across the room from it, I am
using an 8 -inch loudspeaker capable
of 5 watts output. This one has never
given me any trouble. Since both
speakers are hooked up at once, I have
cut the impedance in half. The 12 -inch
speaker has an impedance of 8 ohms,
and the 8 -inch speaker is rated at 15
ohms. They are connected to the 4
and 8 ohm amplifier taps, respectively,
to correct any mismatch. Neither one
of the speakers seems to be overloading at any time. I am not using any
appreciable bass or treble boost, since
the phono equalizer seems to give me
adequately flat response. The ampli-
RACK
55
SENSATIONAL NEW
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FOR HIGH FIDELITY MUSIC SYSTEMS
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For turntables or record changers.
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Unlimited arrangements, additions.
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(UNFINISHED) STANDARD MODEL $39.50
See Your Dealer or Write for Free Color l.iterot,rry
DEALER INQUIRIES INVITED
E. and R. SCHELLER
1630 West Granville Ave.
CHICAGO 26, ILLINOIS
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
www.americanradiohistory.com
_
fier has an output rating of 20 watts.
Do YOU Like
To Waste Money?
AFFORD
Can
To Throw Money
1"
Away? ?
If not, there are some things you
should know before buying any
high fidelity equipment, regardless
of where you plan to purchase.
After three years in the audio field,
during which time we have become
one of the largest distributors in
the nation, High -Fidelity House
has published Bulletin G.
This bulletin contains some startling information, much of which
has never before been put into
print. It can help you to prevent
costly mistakes, and you will find it
most fascinating reading. We suggest you write for your copy at
once. Bulletin G is absolutely free.
HIGH -FIDELITY HOUSE
Dept. H604
536 South Fair Oaks, Pasadena, California
STEREOPHONIC
BROADCASTING
EACH SUNDAY 2:05 P.M.
PjuCkwPlTtf\
RB
1330 AM
102.5 FM
Boston's
Concert Music Station
A Good
Music Broadcasters Affiliate
I don't know where I could look to
find the trouble. Any ideas?
Alan M. Funk
1475 Gaston Street
Wantagh, N. Y.
Your repeated tweeter failure seems to
indicate that your amplifier is oscillating
furiously somewhere up in the ultrasonic
range. To check this, connect an AC voltmeter across the speaker terminals with
the amplifier turned on, its volume control
at its normal setting, and the speaker connected. If it is oscillating, you will get a
voltage indication even when no sound is
audible from the speaker.
Your speaker may be rated at 20 watts
continuous, but this is not true of the
So your amplifier could easily
tweeter.
burn out one tweeter after another if it
were oscillating and producing 20 watts
of RF energy.
If you don't happen to have any test
equipment handy, you'd better get the
amplifier to a good audio service agency
before you go through a few more tweeters.
9
When
it
sounds like this
... instead of
IT'S TIME
this,.
FOR
The ULTIMATE in Loudspeakers and Systems
SIR:
Send for Free brochure
recently purchased a turnover cartridge with sapphire standard and
diamond microgroove styli. I mounted
it in my pickup arm, got ready to
try it, and then noticed that the instructions failed to mention which
was the diamond stylus. The stylus
lever is marked with a red dot on
one side and a white dot on the
other side. Which is which?
The dealer from whom I bought
the thing doesn't know. Do you?
K. R. Gillmore
2256 North Bolton Ave.
Indianapolis 18, Ind.
I
We don't believe that there is, as yet,
any "standard" color code for phono
styli, but in your case we can suggest
what a likely answer might be.
A red dot is usually associated with
microgroove styli, and while this is
normally used to identify only a microgroove sapphire, we would guess that
in this case it is referring to the microgroove diamond section of your cartridge. The white dot, then, is probably
identifying
the
standard
sapphire
stylus.
Just to be safe, though, there is a
way you can check to see which is
which. First, counterbalance your arm
so that it exerts as close to zero presContinued on next page
UNIVERSITY
giving complexe details to D -sk AB.
PLAIN!. N. Y.
LOUDSPEAKERS. INC., WHITE
LIVI NGSTON
HI -FI RECORDED TAPES
fait N,,,, 130 l'urrha >t l of
SAVINGS UP TO $75
1
hrmigli the
TAPE CLUB PLAN
The famous Livingston Master Tape
Treasury comprises the finest recordings
of over a dozen different, well-known
labels, many of them also available in
stereophonic form. From classical to jazz,
your kind of music, superbly performed,
magnificently recorded, is now available
TAPE!
on this incomparable medium
-
A LIVINGSTON CLUB MEMBERSHIP
obligates you to nothing, but you receive
a book of 25 coupons, each worth a 25%
discount on LIVINGSTON tapes at any
member -dealer or direct from Livingston!
You also receive a year's subscription (or
renewal) to "Tape Recording Magazine."
Yet your membership fee is only
six dollars!
Write for the complete catalog, or better
yet, join at your dealer's or send in your
membership and start your library,
NOW!
Livingston Tape Club, Dept.
Livingston, New Jersey
Enclosed is my check
HF
or money order for
six dollars to cover my membership in
the Livingston Tape Club. Send magazine, catalog, and coupon book to
(Name)
(Address)
._
._
-...
135
APRIL 1956
www.americanradiohistory.com
AUDIO FORUM
gat/ 6--m
m ef___,
BEST BUY IN HI -FI
55 -C
"FLAT
six"
AMPLIFIER
Grommes high -fidelity amplifier. Output: 12 watts. IM distortion less than
1%. Response ± 0.5 DB, 15 to 30,000
CPS. Built-in pre -amplifier with separate
roll -off and turnover controls. Loudness
control. Calibrated bass and treble controls. Feedback throughout; 4 loops
used. $79.50 net.
Continued from preceding page
sure as possible. Then add one 5 -cent
piece to the head, to give about 5
grams of stylus pressure. Using your
thumbnail, lift the cartridge up to
where it is level with the turntable,
and draw the stylus across the surface
of your thumbnail, using first one
stylus and then the other. The microgroove stylus can be identified by the
fact that it will score the surface of
your thumbnail.
If you're still not certain about
which is which, try playing a few
bands ( about thirty seconds worth)
of a new but not -too -treasured LP
record, at the arm's recommended
normal tracking force. If the stylus
used for this test is the wrong one,
it will leave a narrow band on the
record inhere the lustre of reflected
light has definitely changed.
After these tests, the stylus pressure
should be returned to that value which
is recommended for the cartridge.
MANY SURPRISES
HIGHEST FI
LOWEST PRICES
W.n-Íorze
AA
Selected by all Hi -Fi authorities as
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changer. Patented intermix -plays
10 in any size between 6" and 12"
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Truly the greatest Hi -Fi value ever!
$59.50
Net $3.50 add'I.)
Audiophile Net
(45 rpm spindle
-
TRADER'S MARKETPLACE
TAPE RECORDERS, TAPE. Unusual value. Free
log. Dressner, 69 -02K 174 St., Flushing 65, N. Y. Cata-
QUAD -11 amplifier and preamplifier $200, Wharfdale
W12CS $38, Wharfdale HS /CR3 crossover
$25,
Presto T -18 $45, Gray 108C $30, Fairchild
220A,
40 hours use, $30, Fisher FM -80 $110; average
six
months light use. W. Little, 4439 Old York Rd., Baltimore 12, Maryland.
DC' scientists have brought you new magic
B &O A+ professional anti -static
cartridges for ABSOLUTE FIDELITY.
-the
THE BEST in
unusual, hard -to -find records, by
order only. Selective list free. Helmer, Box mail
193,
Oneida, New York.
GRT-i
Hi -Fi IS OUR BUSINESS
FM -AM TUNER
Grommes matching high fidelity FMAM tuner. Compact, yet full size performance. 2 My sensitivity. Tuning eye.
Full AFC. Cathode follower output.
$129.50 net.
FREE!
-
N. Y. 19.
6 ELEMENT BROAD BAND FM antennas.
aluminum, $10.95
Lunenburg, Mass.
ppd.
Wholesale
All seamless
Supply Co.,
HI -FI SPEAKERS REPAIRED. Amprite Speaker Service
70 Vesey St., N. Y. C. 7. BA 7-2580.
NEW 1956 CATALOG
i"of
TIMPANI PROFESSIONAL RECORDING TAPE.
Until
now sold only to stations. Now released to all recordists. Better signal ratio and response or money
bock. Special trial: Four 1200 ft. reels, $10.00. Bob
Freund, 56 -G Bennett Avenue, New York 33, N. Y.
Dir
GROMMES PRECISION
ELECionTRONICS
9101 -1-IF King Ave., Franklin Park, Ill.
I
Name
I
Address
I
City
I
136
Authorized Distributors
Shipments Prepaid.
Any Diamond stylus $12.75, 1
year guarantee. Special LP Deal. Opposite Carnegie
Hall.
AUDIO UNLIMITED, INC., 169 W. 57th St.,
Zone
State
The new, almost tiny, ELEKTRA Speaker System with a
price as small as its size has a sound that cannot be
matched even by larger speaker systems selling for
many times its low price, $39.50, in hand rubbed
walnut or blonde finishes. Also unfinished for $34.50.
ELEKTRA, Dept. H, 361 Bleecker Street, New York City,
has
full details. Write Now!
(Pat. Pending).
Now you can enjoy
static -free, dustfree, noise -free reproduction, longer
lasting records and prolonged stylus
life with a brilliance never before
dreamed
of!
Audiophile Net:
Dual Sapphire
Single Sapphire
Single Diamond
Micro Diamond St.
$ 9.78
$ 9.30
FREE!
1$21.78
$21.30
1956
;P-tone Catalog. The above are only samples of
the many terrific values in the new
1956 Fen -Tone Hi -Fi catalog including mikes, tape decks, cartridges,
record changers, silent listening
devices, etc.
FENTON COMPANY
15 Moore Street, New York 4, N. Y.
Sold through better
Audio Distributors.
See. yours today!
West of Rookies,
prices slightly higher.
HIGH FIDELITY MAGAZINE
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