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Pedrith May 15, 2013

Hi.  I noticed that they are coming out with a two disc FF IV remastered version.  Does anybody have more info about this, or what remastered means in relation to the OST?

Do you think they are going to do what Hiroki Kikuta did with the release of the updated Secret of Mana?

Cheers,

David

LiquidAcid May 15, 2013 (edited May 15, 2013)

SQEX

On the Amazon page there is a mention of looping. So probably they apply "remastering" (read: brickwall the hell out of the sound) and increase the amount of looping.

Pedrith May 20, 2013

What the heck does "brickwall the hell out of the sound" mean?  I don't read japanese so I'm assuming more looping refers to how many times the track plays before fading out.

Cheers,

David

GoldfishX May 20, 2013

General loss of dynamics and making the music less enjoyable and more fatiguing to listen to, in exchange for a louder volume.

Most "remastered" albums do this to the originals, I tend to believe this one will do similar. Which is sad, considering all they need to do is reprint the FFIV music with loops and considering how good most SNES soundtracks already sound on CD.

Arcubalis May 21, 2013

LiquidAcid wrote:

So probably they apply "remastering" (read: brickwall the hell out of the sound) and increase the amount of looping.

GoldfishX wrote:

General loss of dynamics and making the music less enjoyable and more fatiguing to listen to, in exchange for a louder volume.

Sounds serious. Let's boycott Square Enix for re-issuing an out-of-print soundtrack with bonuses.

GoldfishX May 21, 2013 (edited May 21, 2013)

Hmm, who's trolling now? Or trying to, anyway? I don't see anything about boycotting Square Enix.

Go back and re-read. If they brickwall it, the release is pointless. If they don't screw up the near-perfect audio from the first release and simply add loops and some extras, I'd probably bite. But brickwalling or even applying unnecessary loudness are serious problems at the moment.

Also, yes, I saw this too...

http://www.destructoid.com/final-fantas … 2586.phtml

LiquidAcid May 21, 2013

Arcubalis wrote:

Sounds serious.

Indeed, it is. If you call yourself "Music Editor", you should understand at least that much.

Arcubalis wrote:

Let's boycott Square Enix for re-issuing an out-of-print soundtrack with bonuses.

Just because SQEX puts some bonuses to it, doesn't make it the "definitive versions to get". There is this bit about sound in soundtrack. Some people seem to forget about this bit. And it's actually important, because some of us are still listening to music, and not just masturbating about having "ultimate form" of soundtrack #57124 sitting on our shelf.

Zane May 21, 2013

As a fan of quality, I'd much rather have the original, authentic, versions of the soundtrack on the old prints than anything "remastered". Taking the original music and manipulating it, or changing it, or cranking up the decibel level to make it sound "better" does not make the old music inferior, or less than "ultimate form", or whatever buzzwords you want to put in your headlines to get more hits. Part of the charm and allure of SNES music is that it sounds like it comes from the SNES; start screwing with instrument levels, or re-sampling, or adjusting for clarity, and you have something different, not something "definitive". Further:

Destructoid Article wrote:

I'm a little bummed they dropped the "Original Sound Version" subtitle

Dude, come on. We all know this album will not have any original sound versions. It will have remastered, and therefore unoriginal, sound versions. If you're bummed about this, you can always listen to the original prints.

What's amazing to me about this thread is how two completely non-confrontational, non-SquareEnix specific comments about brickwalling and the loudness war were made, and were rebutted by this:

Arcubalis wrote:

Let's boycott Square Enix for re-issuing an out-of-print soundtrack with bonuses.

As an "industry insider", it's pretty clear where your interests lie.

Arcubalis May 21, 2013 (edited May 21, 2013)

And you guys are basing this all off of what? You haven't even heard it yet. Sounds like a lot of fuss about nothing until we actually hear it, and even then, was the dynamic range of the FFIV soundtrack really so impressive that this is something to worry about?

And yes, it's frustrating that a re-issue of an out-of-print soundtrack with additional loops (much needed) and unreleased tracks (hopefully not the FFIV Minimum Album stuff) is being written off based on speculation about what it's going to sound like. Sounds like bitching and moaning for the sake of bitching and moaning.

I guess being honestly excited about this makes me an evil "industry insider?" I don't know, I'd rather go through life being an optimistic "insider" than wasting my energy being angry and negative about things that may or may not even be the case.


Edit:

Zane wrote:

What's amazing to me about this thread is how two completely non-confrontational, non-SquareEnix specific comments about brickwalling and the loudness war

These were made in response to somebody looking for more information about the album, and the responses are, I believe, unnecessarily negative given what we know, and would probably taint my view of the product if I didn't already know I want this album.

If this were just a chat about the album, then whatever (everyone's entitled to their opinion), but when somebody is looking for information, I don't see the point in painting a negative picture when we really have no idea what it's going to look like.

Arcubalis May 21, 2013

Zane wrote:

As an "industry insider", it's pretty clear where your interests lie.

It was supposed to be clear that my interests lie in increased access to a soundtrack that belongs in everyone's collection. I guess it wasn't all that clear, so I've spelled it out for you.

Zane May 21, 2013

Great spin there. The phrases "probably", "assuming" and "I tend to believe" don't seem to be queues that we're "bitching and moaning for the sake of bitching and moaning". It sounds like conversation and speculation between fans to me.

Arcubalis wrote:

If this were just a chat about the album, then whatever (everyone's entitled to their opinion)

That's basically what this thread was. The album may not even be touched sonically, who knows? Nowhere did anyone confirm it was going to be brickwalled; it was just speculation and discussion, as "remastering" tends to mean brickwalling, not just in VGM albums but all across the board.

Arcubalis wrote:

was the dynamic range of the FFIV soundtrack really so impressive that this is something to worry about?

Actually, yes, it is. The nuances of an album like that can easily be lost or distorted (even extremely mildly) from an improper "remaster". Someone like GX is much more well-versed in this, but there's often loss of detail in exchange for loudness and decibel level in situations like this.

Arcubalis wrote:

the responses are, I believe, unnecessarily negative

Arcubalis wrote:

I don't see the point in painting a negative picture

Arcubalis wrote:

Sounds serious. Let's boycott Square Enix for re-issuing an out-of-print soundtrack with bonuses.

Point taken.

LiquidAcid May 21, 2013

Actually his comment about DR shows that he doesn't understand what he's talking about. If the DR is low to begin with, it's even more important to not further compress it. You can always DRC / limit the signal if you want to, the reverse process is not possible if the damage is already done.

GoldfishX May 21, 2013

Yeah, Liquid's the expert on the subject. I just tend to go by a combination of Wavgain measurements, foobar DR measurements and my own hearing. To my ears, FFIV's original release is one of the best sounding albums I own and the same goes for the majority of 16 bit Square releases. There is nothing on those albums that needs any type of altering, remastering, retouching, normalizing, whatever. What we can definitely use are loops, but what is the point if they somehow botch the music part?

Arcubalis/Jayson, look man, I told you years ago you sound like a walking PR machine. You still sound like one and you are confusing valid concerns and discussion about an upcoming release with excessive negativity and trolling. I really want to be happy to have VGM coverage on a mainstream site, but that just kills your credibility to me.

Yes, my initial post in the Jeremy Soule thread was a legitimate troll. I also loathe the man's music (not to mention that general direction for VGM and his own outlook on the industry) and I feel like I'm entitled to take a dig at the man every once in a awhile. You know this, we've gone back and forth on it in the past. No need to "return" and act surprised.

This is an entirely different story. FFIV is one of my favorite soundtracks. Remasters though, 99% of the time, are garbage. I cannot think of one that actually improved the original material. The FFIV soundtrack does not need any type of remastering and the last thing VGM needs is for publishers to start going back and remastering their back catalogues with louder volumes so the iPod generation doesn't have to spin the wheel a few times to increase their volume going through their craptastic $3 earbuds.

The poster did not know what brickwalling meant, so Liquid and I clarified it for him. If you want to talk negativity, how about randomly popping into a thread, grabbing two random quotes from us and plopping down, "Sounds serious. Let's boycott Square Enix for re-issuing an out-of-print soundtrack with bonuses" in a sarcastic, passive-aggressive tone? I mean, I see your Destructoid post and your enthusiasm for the release, but I'm not seeing it in your post here. Congratulations on accomplishing nothing.

You're not dealing with casual newbs here like you probably are on Destructoid. You're dealing with knowledgeable longtime hobbyists here and not everything is all smiley faces and strawberries. I agree, everyone should own FFIV's soundtrack and not having looped tracks on the current release sucks. But there is a very real chance they're going to botch this (especially if they are emphasizing the remastering) and there is no way I'd ever recommend a flawed product.

Pedrith May 21, 2013

Hi.  Thanks for the clarification about brick walling and the article on loudness wars.  I've actually noticed some of this in the remasterings of some of my classical music when compared with earlier albums, but didn't know what to put it down as.  Since I don't own the album and there seems to be a lot of speculation I've taken the chance and ordered the album.  I think it will be worth it for the extra loops alone (especially for my favourite song: Into the Darkness).

I hope that we can continue the discussion in this thread as new information is released.

Again, thank you for all the help.

Sincerely,

David

Razakin May 22, 2013

Has Square Enix botched any of their earlier re-releases which seem to have been remastered a bit, like Vagrant Story or Valkyrie Profile (can't remember if that one was actually remastered or not). Same with other VGM-albums, has there been any botchings on remastering parts?

Zane May 22, 2013

Razakin wrote:

Has Square Enix botched any of their earlier re-releases which seem to have been remastered a bit, like Vagrant Story or Valkyrie Profile (can't remember if that one was actually remastered or not). Same with other VGM-albums, has there been any botchings on remastering parts?

There were threads about the Vagrant Story and VP a while ago; one person's detail on the VS reprint get detailed here. Stephen said "I can't hear a discernable difference in the music. The music seems clearer and louder in the new one, but the instruments haven't changed." about the VP reprint.

GoldfishX May 22, 2013

A lot of people did not like the VS remaster, but I'm not familiar with the score. And I have the original VP, so I never bothered with the reissue. The Rockman E-can pales in comparison to the 3 CD boxset that was released earlier, I can tell you that. The arranged tracks got absolutely murdered.

Remasters are quite rare in VGM, but are common in mainstream music and usually they just amount to increasing the loudness (although in some cases, entire parts are redone). The Iron Maiden and Megadeth reissues on the market now are considered to be terrible compared to the originals, unfortunately they are the main releases for those groups at the moment.

LiquidAcid May 22, 2013 (edited May 22, 2013)

Another example of bad "remastering", although in the domain of anime soundtrack, is the US branch of Geneon Entertainment, which usually doesn't just re-issue the albums for the US market, but also feels like they have to change the sound. See discussion on VGMdb for reference. IIRC someone also posted waveform images there, illustrated compression and clipping.

Razakin May 22, 2013

GoldfishX wrote:

A lot of people did not like the VS remaster, but I'm not familiar with the score. And I have the original VP, so I never bothered with the reissue. The Rockman E-can pales in comparison to the 3 CD boxset that was released earlier, I can tell you that. The arranged tracks got absolutely murdered.

Damn, seems that I need to get some lossless copies of both original and E-can versions of those arranged tracks to see if I need to even buy the can in some distant future. But then, when I own already majority of the can's music, buying it would be probably be useless.

GoldfishX wrote:

Remasters are quite rare in VGM, but are common in mainstream music and usually they just amount to increasing the loudness (although in some cases, entire parts are redone). The Iron Maiden and Megadeth reissues on the market now are considered to be terrible compared to the originals, unfortunately they are the main releases for those groups at the moment.

Yeah, on metal side they've seemed to f--- things up, but for instance Queen's remastering has apparently been pretty good. Perhaps bit louder than old ones, but clearer also in my ears. I kinda wish Metallica would remaster their Death Magnetic to quieter a bit :P

LiquidAcid wrote:

Another example of bad "remastering", although in the domain of anime soundtrack, is the US branch of Geneon Entertainment, which usually doesn't just re-issue the albums for the US market, but also feels like they have to change the sound. See discussion on VGMdb for reference. IIRC someone also posted waveform images there, illustrated compression and clipping.

Well, that should be "was the US branch", as Geneon US has been dead for some time. And I wonder how much of that was US side f---ing things up or japanese side dictating things.

But baack to topic, I do hope that the sound quality will be stellar and not Death Magnetic-bad. Really can't wait for this and V / VI versions.

Pedrith May 27, 2013

I was wondering if the remastered soundtrack is going to be from the FF IV complete collections for psp, or if it will be just the snes score?

Any thoughts on this, or news to prove or disprove this idea?

Cheers,

David

Ramza May 31, 2013

My suspicion is that the remaster would cover only the Super Famicom version, so any additional music written for PSP version (including After Years) are unlikely to be on this disc.

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