Well, a new post just brought this to my attention. Here's the same perfect example of dynamic compression that you pointed out as being "atrocious".
Do you still find a reason for dynamic compression so that you can enjoy it in the Jeep? Point being is that it ruins albums that should sound spectacular.
21 on vinyl:
21 on CD:
You can debate the merits of vinyl for as long as you like, but these days the best reason for it is that the master tapes for the vinyl are often less compressed DESPITE CD's having better dynamic range.
When I go to a public performance I'm not listening in a car, or using an iPod. What gives?
The logic is simple, most recordings are mastered to sound decent (notice I didn't say great) on mass produced reproduction equipment ,not "audiophile" type gear. They have to please the masses not the few. That's my story and I'm stickin' to it !!!!
Please allow me to clarify a bit, Serendipity. The "convenience" crowd is what I call the generation of folks growing up that want things to be "convenient" with regards to their music. These are not the type of people that have 3,000 LP's, not the type of people that care to take the time to clean, maintain, store or even get up off their couch to flip an LP over or even get up to swap out a CD. No, the convenience crowd wants their entire music library in the palm of their hand or stored within their hard drive for instant access and they have no interest whatsoever in getting up off the couch to change an album or a song.
The recording industry [in general, there are exceptions] is catering to this convenience crowd. They are recording the music to sound good on these "convenience" devices and not a high fidelity playback system. The problem is that when this is done, the music is ruined....unless one listens to it on a convenience format/playback system. As for why public performances have increasing levels of compression mixed in with improper SPL levels? The only reason I can think of is simply stupidity or a complete lack of interest in achieving good sound. Back when David Grohl and I were in High school and I was running the sound board, we had zero compression and the SPL levels were set to where his music [along with others] sounded the best. Not the loudest. Perhaps that was why one particular concert had to be stopped mid performance by the Fire Marshall. We had way too many people out of their seats, dancing in the isles. That's the power of good sound.
What I meant to say is that live sound is not the same as listening on an iPod or in the car, it's supposed to sound good. Why most recent live performances I've heard (including magic shows, Las Vegas shows, circuses) over-use dynamic range compression is beyond me. For example, I like the Cirque du Soleil - they are an amazing circus, but their recent shows have been way too loud with extreme amounts of compression. They could have backed down the volume 45% and it would have sounded better.