Here goes the latest installment in my ongoing observations regarding re-issues of classic material. I picked up the two disc re-issue of Are You Experienced about a year ago, ordered on-line actually. This was presented with all the usual hype: lovingly re-mastered by Jimi's original engineer along with the legendary George Marino, 180 gr HQ vinyl, direct from the original 2-track mixdown, bonus tracks, full color booklet etc., etc. The only thing missing in the description was printed plainly on the small sticker attached to the shrink wrap "digitally re-mastered". I guess "bonus tracks", "full color booklet" and a few other things should have tipped me off before ordering but we all have weak moments when it comes to loved ones and considering who was involved I leaped before I looked.. Anyway I gave it a spin because you never know and digital has grown immensely since the industry finally admitted it wasn't perfect, ever. The record sounds "good", bass lines are very clean and the vinyl is really nice. Sadly there is a distinct digital character at many points especially on cymbals and when Jimi ventures up to the higher registers. These issues are mostly minor and could probably be overlooked except for one small point. George Marino has just done an all-analogue version of the same album. This one is a single disc, no bonus tracks and a lot less money. My point is, had I known the 2 disc was digital I probably would have put my money elsewhere and gone looking for a good copy at a second hand store. Had I known an analogue version was hot on its' heels I would definitly have waited. I know the clues were there for me especially the bonus tracks but why do vendors and critics seem to make a point of avoiding the "D" word when advertising or reviewing these things when the manufacturers are happy to place a sticker on the plastic ending all speculation. I notice someone in the Beatlemania Love-in section of the forums mentioned the masters might be in poor shape and unfit for a re-mix unless done digitally. If that's the case so be it but at least make sure we're getting 192/24 quality throughout right down to the D/A phase. Somehow I suspect this is often not the case and therefore would be much happier if a way was found to ensure people knew what they were buying before money changed hands. The old DDD, ADD, and AAD system worked well for CD and even prompted people to start asking why the fewer D's the better the sound leading to improvemts in all formats. BTW anybody heard the George Marino Analogue job? Does this issue mean George had misgivings about the digital version or are they just milking the cow from all ports?