Download of the Week: Blue Coast Records

Blue Coast Records is offering a free group of performances recorded at the 2012 California Audio Show. To access the downloads you must register with Blue Coast Records. The recordings were made live direct to 2 channel using the Sonoma System at 2.8 MHz.

Blue Coast is offering the 13 files in three formats: 44KHz WAV, 96KHz WAV, or 2.8MHz DSF. The performances are folk style and very enjoyable. As usual, Blue Coast does a great job when it comes to recording quality.

Get your free downloads here.

cookiemarenco's picture

Thank you, Steven, we appreciate your sending people to our site!

More DSD downloads can be found at

I recorded most of the piece on their or have checked out the source recordings.  Some were recorded to analog tape and mixed down to DSD, which we feel is the optimum method to record.  We also feel that recording to DSD and mixing through an analog console back to DSD is fine.

What we don't do is sell any downloads as DSD files that were recorded originally to PCM at any bit rate.  We'd prefer to release high rez PCM files in that case (and there are some of those at Downloads NOW!.

If anyone has any questions, please contact us at


Cookie Marenco

founder and producer, Blue Coast Records

labjr's picture

"We also feel that recording to DSD and mixing through an analog console back to DSD is fine."

This doesn't add an unacceptable level of noise?

Has anyone started recording with DSD128 or even DSD256 where the noise would be farther out. Or is analog just the easiest way to do it?

cookiemarenco's picture

I've owned a commercial recording studio for more than 25 years and recorded more than 400 albums for labels prior to starting my own label.  After numerous tests and retests (blindfold) we have decided that analog tape more accurately describes the true sound.  DSD 128 came very close but not as good as analog.  We often choose DSD 128 as our source because the cost of tape is $400 a reel, which can be prohibitive.  Noise is not an issue when recorded properly.  The recording made for the DSD downloads at CAS were recorded directly to DSD.

We use the Sonoma System and Meitner ADDAs for our DSD multi-track recordings. It does not record at 256, but we hope that is a future possibility.  The Korg unit which records at 256 is not adequate for what we need in a professional environment. And the ADDAs are not as good with no option to change them.

PCM on protools, 192 using Meitner ADDA was far from adequate for our purposes and does not come close to the DSD or analog recordings. 

Of course, you're going to have a lot of professional opinions on this.  As far as "noise", the worst noise floor (in my opinion) comes from PCM digital recording which is covered by 'dithering' -- a built in noise floor to disguise artifacts.  There are other methods used to cover the noise in cheaper PCM gear as well.  192 is not always a great sound, especially in cheaper gear.  

In a professional recording situation, a good engineer can control the noise floor of analog with good recording techniques and proper gain structure (level to tape).  Noise floor from the room through the mic and electronics will present more issues than the format recorded on.

I always suggest doing a listening test for yourself to be the judge... or participating in a group that has the ability to compare results.  One person's 'great' is another person's 'sucks'.  :)


Cookie Marenco




  Adequate ADDA for DSD 256 in a professional environment for recording don't yet exist, and recording is too limited for what our purposes are.