Wiener Philharmoniker: Decca – The Orchestral Edition (6LP box set, 180g pressings)

# Composers: Richard Wagner, Gustav Holst, Anton Bruckner, Franz Schubert, Johann Strauss II, Otto Nicolai, Emik Nikolaus Von Reznicek, Richard Heuberger, Ludwig van Beethoven
# Orchestras: Wiener Philharmoniker
# Conductors: Sir Georg Solti, Herbert von Karajan, Willi Boskovsky, Karl Münchinger, Zubin Mehta, George Szell
# Vinyl (2014)
# Number of Discs: 6
# Format: Flac
# DR Analysis: DR 12, DR 14, DR 14, DR 13, DR 13, DR 15
# Label: Decca | 478 7464
# Size: 24-bit/192kHz (12.5GB), 24-bit/96kHz (6.27GB) and 16-bit/44.1kHz (1.63GB)
# Recovery: 5%
# Scan: yes
# Servers: File Factory

Do I even need to say anything about this box set?

It’s the Wiener Philharmoniker. The performances speak for themselves.


From the Decca website:

A document of a label-orchestra relationship, of famous venues and of the art of classical recording. Few labels can claim to be so associated with a city as inextricably as Decca is with Vienna. No history of classical recordings would be complete without a chapter documenting how both Decca and the WP worked to perfect the art of recording in the city’s great concert halls, most notably in the famous Sofiensaal.

Over the course of nearly half a century, this partnership was the catalyst for standard-setting pioneer work in the field of recording techniques on the part of Decca and provides an artistic documentation of numerous recording firsts and musical milestones and rarities.

A document of a tradition. As long-term Decca producer Christopher Raeburn summarizes: There is a definite tradition in Viennese playing and interpretation as exemplified by the Vienna Philharmonic, and the collaboration with DECCA has done much to preserve this quality.

Albums included here:

Solti – Wagner: Overtures
Karajan – Holst: The Planets
Mehta – Brucker: Symphony No.9 in D Minor
Münchinger – Schubert: Rosamunde, D.797 (Incidental music to Helmina von Chézy’s Play)
Boskovsky – Overtures Of Old Vienna
Szell – Beethoven: Egmont – Complete Incidental Music, Op.84

Track Listing:

Side One
Richard Wagner – Overtures (cont.)
01 – Overture (Rienzi)
02 – Overture (Der fliegende Hollander)

Side Two
Richard Wagner – Overtures (conc.)
03 – Overture (Tannhauser)
04 – Bacchanale (Tannhauser / Act 1)

Side Three
Gustav Holst: The Planets (cont.)
01 – Mars, The Bringer Of War
02 – Venus, The Bringer Of Peace
03 – Mercury, The Winged Messenger

Side Four
Gustav Holst: The Planets (conc.)
04 – Jupiter, The Bringer Of Jollity
05 – Saturn, The Bringer Of Old Age
06 – Uranus, The Magician
07 – Neptune, The Mystic

Side Five
Anton Bruckner: Symphony No.9 in D Minor (cont.)
01 – Feierlich. Misterioso
02 – Scherzo (Bewegt lebhaft) – Trio (Schnell) – Scherzo da capo

Side Six
Anton Bruckner: Symphony No.9 in D Minor (conc.)
03 – Adagio (Langsam, feierlich)

Side Seven
Franz Schubert: Rosamunde, D.797 (Incidental music to Helmina von Chézy’s Play) (cont.)
01 – Overture
02 – Entr’acte No.1
03 – Ballet Music No.1 – Andante un poco assai
04 – Entr’acte No.2

Side Eight
Franz Schubert: Rosamunde, D.797 (Incidental music to Helmina von Chézy’s Play) (conc.)
05 – Romance: “Der Vollmond strahlt auf Bergeshoh’n”
06 – Chorus of Spirits: “In der Tiefe wohnt das Licht”
07 – Entr’acte No.3 – Andantino
08 – Shepherd’s Melody
09 – Chorus of Shepherds: “Hier auf den Fluren…”
10 – Chorus of Huntsmen: “Wie lebt sich’s so frohlich im Grunen”
11 – Ballet Music No.2

Side Nine
Overtures of Old Vienna (cont.)
01 – Overture (J. Strauss II: Die Fledermaus)
02 – Overture (Nicolai: The Merry Wives of Windsor)

Side Ten
Overtures of Old Vienna (conc.)
03 – Overture (Von Reznicek: Donna Diana)
04 – Overture (J. Strauss II: Prinz Methusalem)
05 – Overture (Heuberger: Der Opernball)

Side Eleven
Ludwig van Beethoven – Beethoven: Egmont – Complete Incidental Music, Op.84 (cont.)
01 – Overture
02 – Lied: “Die Trommel geruhret”
03 – Zwischenakt: Andante
04 – Zwischenakt: Larghetto

Side Twelve
Ludwig van Beethoven – Beethoven: Egmont – Complete Incidental Music, Op.84 (conc.)
05 – Lied: “Freudvoll und leidvoll”
06 – Zwischenakt: Allegro – Marcia
07 – Zwischenakt: Poco sostenuto e risoluto
08 – Clarchens Tod
09 – Melodram: Suber Schlaf du kommst wie ein
10 – Siegessymphonie: Allegro con brio

Mastered at Optimal from the original analogue source
Limited, numbered six LP set – only 2000 sets

Additional info can be found here.

Ripping Info:

All vinyl is cleaned on a VPI 16.5

Technics SL1200-MK5 (modified)
– Rega RB300 arm with RB700 wiring
– Michell Tecnoweight
– SoundSupports armboard
– Trans-Fi Audio ResoMat
Audio Technica AT33PTG/II
AVID Pellar preamp
RME Hammerfall 9632 ADC

Processing: Sound Forge 10, ClickRepair (manual mode only), iZotope RX3

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Thank you!


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30 thoughts on “Wiener Philharmoniker: Decca – The Orchestral Edition (6LP box set, 180g pressings)

  1. Thank you Steve. I know it was painful for you to rip this box and you are no very satisfied on the results. But … I am. So you should be happy because there will be many people like me. The unique Vienna Philharmonic sound is the subject of this invaluable box. I might say it is only “für Genießer” or “pour le connaisseur”

    • I wouldn’t say it was “painful”, but it was a lot more work than it should’ve been. I just got spoiled by the beautiful pressings in the DG box.

      All things considered, I’m still happy with the results here. Enjoy!

  2. I was particularly impressed with the Boskovsky Overtures disc. Sweet string, pungent brass…Thanks so much for making this available.

  3. You bring joy to any sensible being with your contributions. Only words can state the immense gratitude that I, and my future generations will have when listening to this records.
    I hope you can feel the stretch of hands I send from a room with high volume music in Ecuador.

  4. I’ve just downloaded the incomparable VPO, and the opening Overture to Rienzi is fabulous with Solti! This and his final conclusion to Die Meistersinger are Wagner’s best concert extractions. Love this!


  5. A million thanks for sharing these priceless recordings with us and in such unbelievable quality. I’m speechless.

    • Thanks, Dimitris. Glad you’re enjoying the rips!

      I have to admit, I was initially disappointed in the pressing quality on the vinyl in this box. The perfect pressings in the DG Originals box had me spoiled.

      Ectudor later told me that “the Wiener Philharmonik sound” was the main attraction here, and that my perceived technical shortcomings in the vinyl would become less important.

      Once I did the cleanup and processing on the rips, and listened to the performances under a new light, then “I got it” Made me want to hear more. My eyes and ears are officially open.

      If anyone has suggestions on any “must have” WP releases, please let me know.

  6. As usual, thank you.

    I sometime imagine somebody (you) in complete solitude, surrounded by Hi-tech, listening to Great Music. And willing to sharing it.

    And I receive your gift, and I listen the same Great Music. And, then, perhaps, the same pleasure and the same smile is shared…somewhere…

  7. Steve, thanks for this marvelous set in resplendent sound. There are so many tasty delights from Karajan’s Holst to Boskovsky’s fine renditions of classic Viennese overtures. Also notable is Münchinger’s stylish and heartwarming Schubert.

  8. I have just listened to the Tannhauser excerpts; even with a (little) surface noise these are stunning recordings. I have the Solti Tannhauser CDs and the sound quality of these rips is quite something; far better than the CD release.

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