Listener opinions for alternative approaches to recording multichannel classical music were investigated, particularly considering alternatives to the traditional approach. Recordings were made with pre-existing microphone arrays but alternative arrangements of musicians. These were used in a listening test to assess different attributes (timbral balance, envelopment, locatedness etc.). From the results it was noted that naïve and trained listeners assessed the recordings in different ways. Through factor analysis, two components were identified to represent these assessments – creativity and conventionality. The naïve listeners indicated that purchasability was closely related to creativity whereas for the trained listeners, conventionality was an indicator of purchasability. A method for predicting purchasability was developed which may aid future work in the area.
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