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Through the decade following 1953, RCA Victor made a wondrous and substantial body of recordings which have come to be identified with their early stereo release label, Living Stereo. At the beginning of the widespread adoption of stereo audio in the home, Living Stereo offered a widely available range of quality music and performances in high quality sound.
An impressive amount of these records offer music, performances and audio quality which are still top choices and in many cases, still definitive! In its recording philosophies, Living Stereo influenced many of the recordings made since. They were significant in terms of music and sound quality and represent an important part of audiophile history.
On October 6, 1953, RCA held experimental stereophonic sessions in New York's Manhattan Center with Leopold Stokowski conducting a group of New York musicians in performances of Enesco's Roumanian Rhapsody No. 1 and the waltz from Tchaikovsky's opera Eugene Onegin. There were additional stereo tests in December, again in the Manhattan Center, this time with Pierre Monteux conducting members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.
In February 1954, RCA made its first commercial stereophonic recordings, taping the Boston Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Charles Munch, in a performance of The Damnation of Faust by Hector Berlioz. This began a practice of simultaneously recording orchestras with both stereophonic and monaural equipment. Other early stereo recordings were made by Toscanini and Guido Cantelli respectively, with the NBC Symphony Orchestra; the Boston Pops Orchestra under Arthur Fiedler; and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under Fritz Reiner.
Initially, RCA used RT-21 quarter-inch tape recorders (which ran at 30 inches per second), wired to mono mixers, with Neumann U-47 cardioid and M-49/50 omnidirectional microphones. Then they switched to an Ampex 300-3 one-half inch machine, running at 15 inches per second (which was later increased to 30 inches per second). These recordings were initially issued in 1955 on special stereophonic reel-to-reel tapes and then, beginning in 1958, on vinyl LPs with the logo ‘Living Stereo’.
I could get schmaltzy again, but sixty great albums for less than a hundred bucks? You could do a lot worse! Thanks, RCA and SONY!Published 1 month ago by Susanni
Slightly disappointing. Not as good as Mercury Living Presence. Many of the CDs have only 35 minutes playing time. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Questor
Nice & easy, very fast delivery, good price. Very recommended. AAAAA++++++++Published 6 months ago by Hananel Alon
An interesting box set of recordings from a different era. Some of them are a very fine but others miss the mark. Read morePublished 6 months ago by MR LINKS