So, I'm sitting here working on my day job stuff and listening to a recording of Mahler 7 on the new iPod (thanks Santa! Mrs. Claus got me the big one, so most of my stuff is on here as 16 bit / 44.1) I'm finding the sound of the recording quite lovely, but clearly the engineers broke several cardinal rules of classical recording. 1 - I'm clearly hearing limiting on the peaks. Not just timpani or cymbals, but brassy sections. 2 - Spot mics...like crazy. When a horn has a solo, he/she skates right up to the front of the orchestra - same for the trumpets, bones and all others.... There are very LARGE sections of the recording where the whole image of the orchestra shifts dramatically...violins come front and center and then back out to the left. It's a rather famous orchestra, famous recording company, I didn't check the jacket to see who the engineer is....I'm quite disappointed. It's a shame - the orchestra sounds quite nice when you can tell that it's just the main array working. All that and it's a nearly flawless live performance. PS - I won't disclose the who's and the what's...don't ask.