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on 24 April 2004
Richard Goode is best described as 'the pianist's ideal pianist'. Fewpeople on record play with such perfection and complete self-assurance.This set is a magnificent achievement and I would say is one of theessential sets to own. The quality of his playing is also totallyconsistent throughout.
However, do not come to this set for emotional profundity. This is not acrticism per se, but his playing suits the completely self-confidentpianist; it does not move emotionally, and it is not "profound". For that,the best set available is probably by Alfred Brendel; I personally favourhis first set on Philips.
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on 30 March 2013
Owning and having explored many interpretations of the 32 sonatas - Schnabel, Pollini, Serkin, Gould, Kempff - this is the definitive set for me. Technically unsurpassed and consistent throughout, together with pristine sound quality and incredible judgement, this set is a must-have for Beethoven purists and perfectionists.

Goode emphasizes the classical heritage of Beethoven's sonatas but, unlike the claims of some reviewers, I believe that he tackles the more revolutionary and romantic sonatas with an equally appropriate change in mood and temperament. This set, for me, has the definitive Waldstein and the definitive Appassionata but I have greatly enjoyed exploring the lesser-known and slightly less exciting sonatas which, on final analysis, are just as intellectually rewarding as the major ones. The Pastoral is perhaps slightly dissapointing but that may be due to the fact that I have listened to it too many times. I have long overdosed on the Moonlight so I'm only too glad to explore the other sonatas which a box set like this provides in plenty.

Goode also delivers on the supreme test of the final five sonatas which I think are equal to Pollini's classic take, and I almost favour Goode's versions; it is a matter of taste, but certainly Goode's late sonatas do not pale in any way to those of Pollini - and even though early Pollini's Beethoven is hard to fault (I dislike old Pollini's latest Beethoven offerings) Goode is no less of a treat.

To repeat, for me, this set is definitive and together with Gulda's Well-Tempered Clavier for the Old Testament, the New Testament of classical piano has with this cycle received the royal and five-star treatment.
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on 3 June 2007
The range Goode displays over the course of this set is remarkable. Not since the Kempff cycles of the mid-20th century has such a complete cycle of these sonatas been so well played. His powerful interpretations of the early sonatas deserve special mention, however Goode's magnificent articulation remain a staple of his Waldstein and Hammerklavier. But not just his power and stunning articulation single Goode out, his depth of feeling and sensibilities render this set a fantastic purchase!

Although a reviewer has complained of poor sound quality, I have found no such issues, in fact although compact the sound captures every nuance of this famous cycle. Only the Kempff cycle can offer a viable alternative but with the advantage of digital sound, the Goode has to be the first choice.
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on 28 April 2007
The boxy sound is one drawback in this set - it really is unpleasant, and then there's Goode's constant 'vocalise' in the style of Glenn Gould, which is very off-putting. Then there's Goode's half-hearted interpretation of the early sonatas and his incessant 'banging' of loud chords. Horrible. The best performances here are the wonderful op.90 sonata and the 'Hammerklavier' op.106. The first movement of op.106 is a damp squib but the adagio is quite wonderful, as is his control and thrust in the fugal final movement. I've had this set for years and have never managed to get into it at all.
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on 29 January 2002
Richard Goode is a truly remarkable Beethoven interpreter; his playing has brilliance and power without annoying mannerisms. This is a wonderful set.
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on 4 December 2016
Very pleasant to listen to. Very unprovoking, very comfortable.
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on 16 April 2014
This box set of Beethoven complete sonata has over praised by Penguin Guide and Gramophone magazine. I bought this box set when it was released and only listen to few sonata.I was not impressed with the sound or playing.the tone and sound tend to spread too much and worst when listening via headphone.For years I have not listen to the sonata of Beethoven.I bought this box as it was a bargain on Amazon.Since I got this set I have been playing it and amazed at mono sound and the sonata were brilliant and very impressed with Kempff playing.I can read music but this box set open my ears and heart to Beethoven sonata. The sound of mono is more impressive that stereo in this case as it is with Beatles and Dylan mono box set.Highly recommended
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