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Songs Sound Engineers Use to Tune a Stereo

What's blasting from your car speakers, and more important, how does it sound? For sound-system engineers at the audio-equipment manufacturer Bose, a playlist is more than tracks that slap. To test stereos, they need songs representing a variety of sounds and recording techniques to make sure new systems can re-create a song with the depth of the original recording.

To have a common reference point, Bose engineers all over the globe share a master playlist. Mark Armitage, head of the acoustical-engineering team at Bose says, "Every system engineer knows these tracks inside and out. It makes for a universal language we can use when testing and tuning." He named a few selections from the test list:

Bruno Mars, "24K Magic" – It features a lot of instruments from the high tweeter notes all the way down.

Tom Petty, "Learning to Fly (Live)” - The crowd starts singing along, Petty's voice drops out, and you get a real sense of how big that auditorium is.

Dave Brubeck Quartet, "Take Five" - Listen for the cymbals from the intro, which are hard to reproduce.

Straight No Chaser, "Homeward Bound" All a cappella. The vocals span all the way across the stage and you can independently hear each person singing.

Possible Preaching Angle:

We also use music to tunes our minds and souls. The world has its music, which attunes them to worldly thoughts, desires, and actions. But believers also have music which tunes our hearts to God by giving us the vocabulary to express praise and worship to God, unifying us as we gather for worship, and adjusting our hearts so that our faith is expressed to God in worship.


Benjamin Hunting, “Top of the Charts: The Songs the Sound Engineers Use to Tune Your Stereo,” Car and Driver (10/23/21)

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