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Complete Symphonies (Box) Box set


Price: £23.87 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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£23.87 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details Only 8 left in stock. Sold by Fulfillment Express and Fulfilled by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

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Product details

  • Orchestra: Austro-Hungarian Haydn Orchestra
  • Conductor: Adam Fischer
  • Composer: Joseph Haydn
  • Audio CD (3 July 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 8
  • Format: Box set
  • Label: IMPORT
  • ASIN: B001RCLAFY
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 38,529 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Product Description

CD Description

This Haydn set is something of an experiment, prompted by the anniversary year. Although MP3 has been used primarily for downloading, MP3 files can also be put on CD. Because it is a compressed format you can squeeze much more than 80 minutes playing time onto a CD. The degree of compression can vary from extreme to moderate, which, as you would expect, affects the sound quality of the end result. For this project we chose a compression rate that produces the highest quality allowed within the MP3 rules. To most ears it should be indistinguishable from a normal CD, but the 35 original CDs of the Haydn Symphony project can now be delivered to a consumer on 8 CDs

Review

Twenty years on, these 'modern-historic' recordings have been re-released by Nimbus in a new packaging which suits them perfectly for convenience and price. This is an innovative approach, by way of something of an experiment prompted by the anniversary year. For MP3 CDs they chose a compression rate that produces the highest quality allowed within the MP3 rules. To most ears (including mine) it is indistinguishable from a normal CD. I found that they played easily on DVD players; with our portable Sony, which has excellent sound, all you have to do is pop the disc in the slot and wait for the magic to happen. We sampled the project by listening to Symphonies 17 & 18 (neither of which I knew, I must confess) - delightful ! On my iMac you do the same, then click on the CD icon which appears on the desktop and select the clearly labelled track you want to listen to. I expect a lot of us will also listen to them on our iPods... The discs don't play on standard CD players, but that shouldn't prove a problem. For 2009's purchasers in this fraught, financially stretched Haydn tricentenary year, this is an unmissable bargain which deserves every success in assisting the fortunes of Nimbus/Wyastone, to whom record collectors are also indebted for their rescue of the Lyrita catalogue. Few readers will be able to put hand on heart and claim to really know all the symphonies and his violin concertos. What better way to join the Haydn celebrations at home, and for the price of a concert ticket? The bargain of the Haydn tricentenary year ! --Peter Grahame Woolf. Editor, Musical Pointers

Almost by chance, but also related to the increasing trend for downloaded purchasing of music, a number of us here at MusicWeb International put ourselves through a compression test set by the indefatigable Kirk McElhearn...it was a big surprise to find how difficult it was to pick out even heavily compressed music files on a blind test. In short, with the high-grade 320kps files on this new MP3 edition of the complete Haydn Symphonies, you needn't have any real fear of any trade-off in sound quality. You might be asking yourself why Nimbus doesn't just offer these recordings as online downloads, but such a huge complete set would take days of irritating and no doubt costly toil to save onto your computer, and I think the neat way in which this whole set has been conceived and presented is something of a stroke of genius. The wonderful thing about being able to rummage through the entire canon of Haydn's symphonies is that you can discover how much truly marvellous music you've been missing by neglecting the less well-known works...All of this can now be yours for the price of about one and a half full price discs, so I say, give it a go! --Dominy Clements, musicweb-international.co.uk

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By MR ALLAN SCRIVEN on 29 May 2009
Format: Audio CD
I've already got the complete symphonies performed by Dorati with the Philhamonica Hungarica and had lots of pleasure from that set. Also have Trevor Pinnock's set of the "sturm und drang" symphonies plus other symphonies under bruggen, davis and others. String quartets complete by Angeles, others with Quatour Mosaiques and Salomon Quartet. The piano trios from Beaux Arts........... I could go and do go on and on about this composer. Yes, I love Haydn's music but despite all the duplications I have I still found this new very compact set of compact discs a revelation. Although they may be on modern instruments, the performance practice is clearly very HIP (historically informed practice to the less than fanactical). The sound quality including the acoustics of the venue is superior to the Dorati set and there is a certain lightness (in the best sense of the term) and vivacity to most of the performances. I've been playing this while I work and it improves every moment. What are you waiting for? BUY BUY BUY, BUY IT NOW!!!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By km.ord on 18 Mar. 2011
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I truly love this complete collection of Haydn's symphonies, performed by the Austro Hungarian Haydn Orchestra. Initially, I purchased the mp3 edition - then took the plunge and bought the original box set of 33 CD's. Having been able to listen to both side by side, I can confirm (to my ears anyway) that there is no difference whatsoever between the sound quality of the CD's and the mp3 discs, which is a steal, at the price of only two mid priced discs. The mp3 edition is an absolute treasure trove. There have been criticisms regarding the recording quality of the London symphonies, which were the first to be recorded in 1987-88...together with one more symphony, No. 45 'Farewell', which was recorded during those sessions. It's true to say, that these symphonies sound just a tad more recessed than the rest of the series. The minuets are a little on the slow side when compared to Harnoncourt's more radical approach with the Concertgebouw...but the performances of the London symphonies by Adam Fischer, generally, can hold their own against most of the competition out there. Slightly boomy and recessed they may be, but rhythms are still sharply articulated, and the string tone is sweet and incisive.

After the 80's recordings, the remaining 92 symphonies are recorded between 1990 and 2001. Even though there is more than a ten year span between these recordings, they sound amazingly consistent throughout. All of the movements within each symphony are beautifully judged; generally on the swift side, with a rugged, rhythmic attack - yet with a gorgeous, sweet string tone. The speeds are on par with period performances, but sometimes they are faster. Fischer's Paris symphonies for example, propel onward, with cracking intensity, beating Franz Bruggen in both tempo, power and passion.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By WherePathsMeet on 5 Dec. 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
8 normal CD's of Haydn symphonies at £20 or under would be bargain enough. Here, the MP3 format allows 33 CD's worth of music to be fitted on to 8 discs, still at around £20! All 104 numbered symphonies, plus A and B, plus a handful of other works provide a feast of Haydn's music. 37 hours of the joyous legacy of a genius at work. So far I have reached number 75 in consecutive listening. There is not a poor movement, let alone a weak work here. The performances and recordings are clear and sprightly, and nothing is lost through the MP3 "compression" if that is the right word. I like modern instrument performances anyway, so these are almost ideal for my taste, I'm sure. Not a hint of disappointment anywhere yet on this wonderful musical journey through a life of achievement in the gradual development and unfolding of the symphony as an art form. Absolutely delighted with the purchase and the opportunity to explore these fine works that were composed in such profusion. Just now a glorious slow introduction to no 76 is playing which I have never heard before but is just proving to me the immensity of the musical achievement of the composer. Yes, the pieces all bear the stamp of Haydn, but never to the extent of becoming boring or predictable. There is an integrity of musical expression in the music itself and realised in these performances, which I cannot put into words, but which shines through to uplift the spirits without fail each time one of these discs is played for a while. No hesitation in recommending, 5 stars all the way - deserves 6 or 7 for the outstanding value!

Just a note - the MP3 formatting means the discs won't play on my music centre CD player, but work fine via the laptop, and sound great via the cheap headphones I use.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By M. Wills on 21 Mar. 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is an absolute gift, and I don't even particularly like Haydn! Purists will debate the relative merits of these recordings (although some rate them very highly), but as an introduction to the symphonies, I don't see how you can possibly go wrong here. At 320kbps, the sound quality is extremely good (faultless to all but the most discerning ears and certainly to mine). Plays on most DVD players, and provided it's equipped with a decent audio DAC, you'll soon forget you're not listening to a CD. Drag and drop to iTunes. Wonderfully compact, magnificently cheap, and comes with considerable pride of ownership. I wish there were equivalent packages for Mozart, Beethoven, et al. The only surprise is that this isn't permanently out of stock.
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