Mono Box Set Original recording remastered, Limited Edition, Box set
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Limited digitally remastered thirteen CD box set that contains the 10 albums originally released by The Beatles in mono (1963's Please Please Me up through 1968's The White Album) plus two further discs of mono singles masters. As an added bonus, the mono Help! and Rubber Soul discs also include the original 1965 stereo mixes, which have not been previously released on CD. These albums will be packaged in mini-vinyl CD replicas of the original sleeves with all original inserts and label designs retained. At the beginning of the '60s, stereophonic recordings were just coming into their own but many households didn't own stereophonic record players. In most cases, an album would originally be mixed in mono for mass consumption and then separately mixed in stereo for those with modern equipment. As the '60s wore on, mono mixes became secondary over stereo and then were eventually abandoned altogether. The Beatles' first 10 albums were mixed twice: once in mono and then in stereo. The mono mixes were sometimes strikingly different to the stereo mixes, which has ensured their collectability over the years. This box contains all the officially released Beatles mono mixes in one limited edition box set. Capitol.
From the Artist
Re-mastering the Beatles catalogue
The re-mastering process commenced with an extensive period conducting tests before finally copying the analogue master tapes into the digital medium. When this was completed, the transfer was achieved using a Pro Tools workstation operating at 24 bit 192 kHz resolution via a Prism A-D converter. Transferring was a lengthy procedure done a track at a time. Although EMI tape does not suffer the oxide loss associated with some later analogue tapes, there was nevertheless a slight build up of dust, which was removed from the tape machine heads between each title.
From the onset, considerable thought was given to what audio restorative processes were going to be allowed. It was agreed that electrical clicks, microphone vocal pops, excessive sibilance and bad edits should be improved where possible, so long as it didn't impact on the original integrity of the songs.
In addition, de-noising technology, which is often associated with re-mastering, was to be used, but subtly and sparingly. Eventually, less than five of the 525 minutes of Beatles music was subjected to this process. Finally, as is common with today's music, overall limiting - to increase the volume level of the CD - has been used, but on the stereo versions only. However, it was unanimously agreed that because of the importance of The Beatles' music, limiting would be used moderately, so as to retain the original dynamics of the recordings.
When all of the albums had been transferred, each song was then listened to several times to locate any of the agreed imperfections. These were then addressed by Guy Massey, working with Audio Restoration engineer Simon Gibson.
Mastering could now take place, once the earliest vinyl pressings, along with the existing CDs, were loaded into Pro Tools, thus allowing comparisons to be made with the original master tapes during the equalization process. When an album had been completed, it was auditioned the next day in studio three - a room familiar to the engineers, as all of the recent Beatles mixing projects had taken place in there - and any further alteration of EQ could be addressed back in the mastering room. Following the initial satisfaction of Guy and Steve, Allan Rouse and Mike Heatley then checked each new re-master in yet another location and offered any further suggestions. This continued until all 13 albums were completed to the team's satisfaction.
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Top Customer Reviews
The Beatles in Mono is, as far as I know, a complete collection of every mono mix they'd ever done. The Beatles were hands-on with their mono mixes, where George Martin and his staff tended to helm the stereo mixes. This is, therefore, the mixes that the Beatles intended you to hear back in the 60's. Playing them remastered on a modern stereo today makes them sound that much more fierce and aggresive, noticeably different from their stereo counterparts. In addition many of the actual mixes are drastically different. "Helter Skelter" is the one in particular that jumped out at me. It sounds like a completely different version of the song. Really refreshing after only having the stereo version for 20+ years!
There are some Beatles albums not included in this set, but that's OK. Let It Be, Abbey Road, and Yellow Submarine were not mixed in true mono. Those mono mixes were just "fold downs" of the stereo mixes. I guess if you were dying to hear them, you can make your own from The Beatles in Stereo set. What is included here is a new compilation called the Mono Masters (a companion piece to the Past Masters) which includes all the non-album mono mixes, and some previouly unreleased ones like "Across The Universe".
This box set is for anyone who calls themselves a true Beatles fan, anyone who wants to own the versions that the Beatles themselves mixed, or any completist.
Is it worth the price?Read more ›
Some of the stereo mixes found on Past Masters 1 and 2 and the second half of the Magical Mystery Tour album were drawn from US or even German and Australian (!) releases, although EMI in Britain presumably did the mixing. In the case of "The Inner Light," no stereo version was available until Past Masters; "You Know My Name" only ever appeared in mono. It has long been known that many of the stereo releases of the earliest Beatle recordings were mock stereo, and they sounded "flippin' lousy" (as Pete Townshend once said). So, sonically, the mono recordings here reflect what The Beatles actually wanted their records to sound like--something that became increasingly important to them as they took more care in the studio.
Second--when you start getting past 1966, the mono mixes become much more interesting, because they are quite different from their stereo counterparts. "Sgt. Pepper" and the "White Album" are essentially completely different albums from the stereo versions. If you want to discover what The Beatles are really about, you need to hear both the mono and stereo versions.
With all that in mind, should you get this set? Most definitely.Read more ›
For example Taxman . On the stereo mix, you hear the bass, drums, gtr all at the left, the ring and the solo gtr at the right and the lead vocal in the center. Kind of odd mix.. On the mono you hear the whole band straight in the center that sounds more rock and united..
Some mono mixes are very different from the stereo mixes. She's Leaving home is not in the same key, the numbers with reverse guitars are also different..If you,re a BIG fan of the Beatles this is a must. If you just like the Beatles the stereo mixes are not that bad..
Most recent customer reviews
I was one of the infidels who didn't really believe all the hype about the "masterful remastering". I thought it was just the corporate worms in Apple trying to chivvy us into... Read morePublished 20 months ago by William McQueen
....if I had a million stars to give for this box I certainly would. To get all the MONO stuff in one elegant package like this is a dream come true. Well done Apple, well done. Read morePublished on Sept. 29 2013 by Bootsy Bass
I purchased this for my mother as a Christmas gift and she was NOT disappointed. We opted to go with the mono versions because this is how she remembered the Beatles growing up. Read morePublished on Jan. 27 2013 by Adam
Received the box set for Xmas 2 years ago. Really impressed with the remastering. As other people have stated, you really have to be a beatle nut to call this a must have. Read morePublished on Nov. 17 2012 by chuck
Sorry I took so long to write ,the Beatles box set was in perfect condition and came way faster than I expected.Thanks again,I will spread the word.The sound quality is stunning. Read morePublished on April 26 2011 by big c
I'll be brief here, mainly because this is The Beatles and this music is so ingrained into everybody's minds now. Read morePublished on March 24 2011 by LeBrain
while it is fascinating to pore through these mono mixes and thrill to the sounds pouring out of the speaker(s), I have concluded for myself that the separation and clarity is... Read morePublished on Jan. 20 2011
I will not address the music because it is self evident. Having heard Rubber Soul in 'stereo' (too much left-right), I knew Mono was the way to go. Read morePublished on May 12 2010 by Robert C. Jones