Going through my records I found an original pressing of Abbey Road that was in pretty clean condition (UK release, Apple Records
SO-383), so I actually did have an original pressing to compare it with. One of these days I'm going to need to spend a day going
through everything and try to put them in alphabetical order or something.
Aside from the older record having the wear and tear pops every now and then, it sounds more or less the same. The mix on some of the songs are noticeably different. Come Together was the only song I listened to as a comparison: re-master has much more attack on the bass guitar, toward the end there's a lot more noticeable very low end, the vocals are more centered whereas the Apple pressing has it more center-left. The slightly over-driven guitar during the verses was much more subtle in the re-master. There was a bit more separation between the organ and guitar in the chorus and especially near the end (when they're more separated between the left (guitar) and right channels (organ)) compared to the Apple pressing. I want to say that after a listen through, the re-master sounds a bit cleaner, but not necessarily because the audio is cleaner, but more-so that the mix separated the individual tracks more. Not necessarily a good or bad thing. Another noticeable thing is how the bass was mixed between the two, though I can't really pin it on any one thing; sometimes, it's really stand-out-ish, sometimes it's a bit muddier, sometimes it's sharper, and sometimes, like in the case with Come Together, the pops and attack are more noticeable. The original Apple pressing seems to have more of the higher end stand out (guitars, high-hat and cymbals).
Filed under: Music