The No. 1 Beatles Hits in 5.1 Surround
According to various press reports, The Beatles’ best-selling #1 compilation will be reissued and expanded in November as CD+Blu-ray and CD+DVD sets featuring remixed stereo and surround sound and for the first time fully restored full length videos for each of the 27 number one singles.
I have the original red and yellow CD. As a major Beatles fan, I was thrilled to be able to hear all of their No. 1 hits as a continuous flow of music. And now I’ll be able to ask one of my family members to get this set (with the Blu-ray) for me during the holidays.
The Beatles and their organization (Capitol Records etc.) created original promotional films on 35 mm film during the band’s history. And it’s these original negatives that are being painstakingly, digital restored in the Ultra High-Definition video format. Image experts have spent many hours carefully cleaning, color correcting, and processing the frames one by one.
There will be two unique editions of the 27 No. 1 hits and their accompanying videos. The standard two disc versions will be a compact disc with a Blue-ray or DVD-Video disc. Sir Paul recorded an audio commentary for three of the films and Ringo is featured in the introductions for another four of them. These can also be acquired without the CDs.
There is a third option called 1+, which includes another disc (Blu-ray or DVD) with 23 additional videos including Rain, Strawberry Fields Forever, A Day In The Life, Hey Bulldog, Don’t Let Me Down, Free As A Bird and Real Love, along with many alternate promos of classic tracks including Paperback Writer, Day Tripper and Hello Goodbye.
But it’s the music and audio that is the most exciting feature of these new releases. Once again Giles Martin with Sam Okell have worked extensively at Abbey Road Studios to prepare completely new stereo mixes of the entire tracks AND 5.1 surround version as well. They went back to the original analog multi track tapes (when available) according to online sources. Jeff Lynne and engineer Steve Jay have remixed Free As A Bird and Real Love.
These collections don’t qualify as high-resolution music…they came from analog tapes and the music is formatted at CD spec. They say the 5.1 mixes are going to be Dolby Digital on the DVD (a lossy format) and DTS HD on the Blu-rays. It should be very interesting to hear all of these tracks presented in 5.1 surround.
I know one of the things I want for Christmas.
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17 thoughts on “The No. 1 Beatles Hits in 5.1 Surround”
Speaking of Jeff Lynne I’ve been anxiously hoping for an ELO tour since he said that with the use of modern synthesizers it would be easy to do without a full harmonic orchestra. Fingers crossed.
That would be fun!
ELO’s – Alone In The Universe is set for release on 11-13-2015
Hoping for good things.
Jeff Lynne’s new Blu-Ray sounds just terrible. Only in stereo and the top end is chopped off and there is muddy bass. A huge opportunity missed.
I’m sorry to hear that…I’m a fan.
So now how many different releases of those same songs will you have in your collection? 🙂
Too many…but it’s the Beatles!
So, I have bought first CDs for this Beatles.
And I bought re-mastered ones in that small apple USB.
Now, I guess I will buy this re-re-mastered ones with Blu-ray this time.
….I guess record industry’s old tactic is working on me.
I too am looking forward to this if just for the 5.1 regardless of whether it is high-resolution or not. The +1 BD package is the way to go. The book that comes with that is very detailed as well.
One thing I’ve learned over the years: ardent Beatles fans are one group I can truly trust, as far as their musical taste. You are one of those, Sir Mark!
Is the Beatles Love DVD- audio also from analog tape and thus not high resolution?
Yes, the first high-resolution audio recordings were done in the mid 1990s…long after the Beatles were done.
I wouldn’t call the original analog tapes a “lossy” format. Even high-resolution digital isn’t perfect. Yes, you invariably lose something in the transfer to digital, but not enough to negate the inherent benefits to an analog recording.
The things I’m concerned about are: that the vinyl is probably being sourced from the digital track (so analog>digital>analog, which is needless) and that the Blu Ray audio mixes will not be lossless. DTS HD can be lossless, so fingers crossed they’re actually using digital multriacks. But when would these have been sourced? The Love multichannnel sounds BEAUTIFUL, but I don’t believe they recorded every track. Did they go back to the analog masters for this? Would guess no, hope yes!
We’ll have to wait and see.
Unfortunately this is a missed opportunity from a 5.1 perspective. Really no discreteness to speak of. Stereo sound quality is pretty good but the 5.1 is just “big stereo”. I guess other than “Love” we will never see Beatle albums re-imaged into proper 5.1
So you’ve heard the 5.1 mixes? I’m sure I’ll be disappointed…