HomePod "Mastered for iTunes": How is Apple Music sounding too good on HomePod.

HQuest

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 10, 2012
61
54
After listening to a ton of Apple Music for the entire week on my HomePod, I returned to my normal life on listening music at other places. Case in point: my car stereo.

I was listening to one of the "Essentials" playlist at home, and since I was in the same mood, I went to my iPhone, selected the same playlist, connected the phone to my car stereo and went my merry way. But I noticed the sound was... different. Different from what I just heard from the HomePod, and different from what I used to remember the songs. It seemed like lead singer's voice was echoing. And the mids were crispier, not in a bad way, just -- again -- different. The only thing clearly different was with all Album names prefixed with "(remastered)", and the notes "This album is Mastered for iTunes" before even proceeding to talk about the band or artist.

So I went back to my old library, selected the same "non mastered" album, and it indeed sounded different - just like I used to hear!

This made me wonder "what about my non-mastered songs on the HomePod"? Guess what, they too sounded different from the "remastered" version: less clear, maybe muddy - as others have reported on their HomePod reviews.

I spoke to a few friends and they too confirmed this feeling. Seems the "Mastered for iTunes" is the missing link on why music on the HomePod is sounding too good to be true.
 

HQuest

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 10, 2012
61
54
Another day, another dozen more CDs on a few different home sound systems against Apple's Mastered for iTunes counterparts. For instance, with my receiver and a Klipsch reference speaker set, listening to the "Mastered for iTunes" albums makes the echo completely perceptible. And the not remastered albums on the HomePod sounds not as bright, clear, crisp, you name it.

So there you have it.

It just sucks to keep two playlists, one for your non-HomePod devices and another for your HomePod. Or change every single EQ and DSP settings to soften the echo applied to the new Mastered for iTunes tracks...
 

HQuest

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 10, 2012
61
54
Where do you find mastered on iTunes playlists on Apple Music?
I just searched for 70/80/90/early 00’s bands/artists “Essentials” playlists. Those are usually using remastered songs.
 

groovyf

macrumors 6502
Dec 15, 2010
388
112
Halifax, UK
Stay away from some of the ZZ Top remastered CDs, that's for sure, some of the tracks are diabolical! (anything on Tres Hombres or Tejas for instance). Look for the "LP Version" of tracks from those...(can be found on Chrome, Smoke and BBQ)
 
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