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'Perfecting Sound Forever': A History Of Audio

In his book, Perfecting Sound Forever, Greg Milner explores the evolution of sound. His history covers the analog days of Thomas Edison through the present day of digital recordings, and the quest for sonic perfection.

Technological advances have complicated the debate about the value of the most accurate reproduction of a sound, versus the most enhanced. Whereas Edison set out to perfectly capture a live performance, today's sound engineers have the ability to create recordings from musicians who aren't in the same room — or aren't even alive at the same time.

Milner takes the reader through major breakthroughs and massive failures in recording history. He also digs into specific recordings from Lead Belly, the Beatles, Mission of Burma, Steve Albini and Massive Attack.

Tell us: How far do you go for great sound? Which do you prioritize, the sound of the recording or its portability?

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