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Better mastered music could be on the way!

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MajorFubar's picture
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RE: Better mastered music could be on the way!

Craig M. wrote:
A higher sampling rate ( which I think is what you are getting at?) doesn't capture more 'snapshots' per second (or whatever)
Pretty obviously, yes it does, that's what 'sampling-rate' means. The question is whether all that additional data makes audio within our hearing range sound better. 

EDIT: I see you corrected yourself on the previous page.

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RE: Better mastered music could be on the way!

BenLaw wrote:

Why won't you take Steve's challenge Cno?

I wouldn't know where or how to start (technically)....and life is too short to try and figure it out.

I have the same track at different resolutions and I (and all but one of the people who listened) can hear the difference. 

I don't have an insatiable desire to prove myself right.....I listen for myself and pass on what I hear. I have somehow struggled through life like this.

It's how I buy my equipment or any other kit or piece of music. I tell others to try it for themselves, and there's plenty of people out there saying the opposite, for my view to be taken over that of anyone else.

FWIW All my Hi-Res music came free when I bought my DS, and at it's current price at Linn records, I'm not sure it's worth the premium....unless it's for a very favorite piece of music.

 

Carrying through this logic, does it mean that HD sound from a BR player is no different to its DVD alternative?

When all is said and done, and there are differing viewpoints, I will always make up my own mind...and go with that.

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RE: Better mastered music could be on the way!

I don't buy 'life's too short' - you've quoted from several pretty obscure forums to try and support your view, which at one point or another has taken a fair bit of searching, certainly more than the 20 mins Steve says it will take to do his test. 

 

It's also hard to accept 'I make up my own mind' when there's an apprently simple test which would mean it is your own mind deciding, rather than the unknowns of different masters being used (as per the interesting harbeth quote on the previous page). 

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RE: Better mastered music could be on the way!

BenLaw wrote:

I don't buy 'life's too short' - you've quoted from several pretty obscure forums to try and support your view, which at one point or another has taken a fair bit of searching, certainly more than the 20 mins Steve says it will take to do his test. 

Googling, I can do......a couple of minutes at best.

The only reason I can rip my music, is because a RipNas does it all. I really am pretty hopeless regarding computers.

BenLaw wrote:

It's also hard to accept 'I make up my own mind' when there's an apprently simple test which would mean it is your own mind deciding, rather than the unknowns of different masters being used (as per the interesting harbeth quote on the previous page). 

My simple test is good enough for me.

We are not going to agree on such matters, so it would be much easier just to accept this.

You should also make it clear to the WHF testers, that all their references to 24 bit sounding better, are also misguided.

As yet, I'm waiting for an answer to my BR vs DVD question.

 

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RE: Better mastered music could be on the way!

CnoEvil wrote:

BenLaw wrote:

I don't buy 'life's too short' - you've quoted from several pretty obscure forums to try and support your view, which at one point or another has taken a fair bit of searching, certainly more than the 20 mins Steve says it will take to do his test. 

Googling, I can do......a couple of minutes at best.

The only reason I can rip my music, is because a RipNas does it all. I really am pretty hopeless regarding computers.

 

I'm sure if you put your mind to it you'd be able to do it, but clearly you have no inclination, I would suggest through fear of having to face the truth.

 

Quote:
BenLaw wrote:

It's also hard to accept 'I make up my own mind' when there's an apprently simple test which would mean it is your own mind deciding, rather than the unknowns of different masters being used (as per the interesting harbeth quote on the previous page). 

My simple test is good enough for me.

 

Except it's not a test of any sort unless you know for certain that the same masters are being used and, if they have been, if they've been downsampled properly. Do you know this? If not, do you accept the possibility that this has been clever marketing by the vendor?

 

Quote:
We are not going to agree on such matters, so it would be much easier just to accept this.

 

Actually, I haven't put forward a personal opinion. My sonos doesn't play 24bit tracks and I have no DAC, so I can't carry out the test myself. But my leanings are towards the skeptics, precisely because it would be so bleedin easy for just ONE of the people for whom it is SO easy to tell the difference to take Steve's 20 minute test and pass and ABX test. But no...

 

Quote:
You should also make it clear to the WHF testers, that all their references to 24 bit sounding better, are also misguided.

 

Huh? By what, writing a letter? Relevance to discussion?

 

Quote:
As yet, I'm waiting for an answer to my BR vs DVD question.

 

I have no idea, I'm sure someone who actually knows something will be able to tell you.

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RE: Better mastered music could be on the way!

CnoEvil wrote:

As yet, I'm waiting for an answer to my BR vs DVD question.

CnoEvil wrote:

Googling, I can do......a couple of minutes at best.

Smile

 

 

I don't really care about DVD vs. BD but I heard something about DTS being compressed vs. Master Something. That actually makes a lot of sense. 2 hours of uncompressed 24bit/96kHz audio (DTS) would take up some 3Gb of data space. and where's the movie going to fit in on the DVD disc then?... puzzled

so the superiority of BD audio over DVD is in that it's not compressed since BD disc can store much more data than DVD so there's no need to squash content onto the medium.

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RE: Better mastered music could be on the way!

CnoEvil wrote:

The more you look into it, the more opinions you get, and someone with a little more technical knowledge can tie you in knots.

Here is another view which is well put (post 4):....at least it ties in with what (I think) I'm hearing

the guy over there only thinks he knows what he's talking about. I was actually using quite similar explanation of "superiority" of hi-res over standard-res before I actually took the effort to read and try to understand the Nyquist theorem. but I can accept the fact that it's not so easy to understand the theory behind quantisation for a commoner so there you have it - loads of pseudo scientific explanations which have nothing to do with reality.

24 bits don't give you more discrete levels of volume within 16 bits. they only give you more volume levels on top of 16 bits.

high sampling rate doesn't give you better "quality" of reproduction of high frequency sounds. it only gives you a possibility to capture and recreate higher frequencies, which in case of 96kHz (or more) is waaaay beyond human hearing capability. no more, no less.

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RE: Better mastered music could be on the way!

CnoEvil wrote:

BenLaw wrote:

Why won't you take Steve's challenge Cno?

I wouldn't know where or how to start (technically)....

 

1. Download and install LAME from here: clicky

 

2. Download and install Foobar from here: clicky

 

3. Download and install the Foobar ABX add on from here: clicky

 

4. Convert a lossless WAV file to an 320kbps MP3 using LAME.

 

5. Compare the WAV and MP3 files using the Foobar ABX blind test. clicky

 

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RE: Better mastered music could be on the way!

Like Craig sensibly did, I'm bowing out, as I can't make my position any clearer than I have already done.

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RE: Better mastered music could be on the way!

No, but you could take Steve's challenge (as could any of the earlier posters for that matter). Seems to me that Steve would be able to help you out if you struggled with any of the stages. 

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RE: Better mastered music could be on the way!

I found out for myself that 320k AAC (VBR) sounds as good, to me, as Apple Lossless for my purposes. My 'raw material' is rips from my own CDs (16bit 44.1khz) and I have no interest in 24/96 files (or higher) because there is so little choice and prices are so high.

What the rest of you get up to is of no matter to me.

However, the tone these debates take is toxic to the forum. The same characters 'parachuted in' every time to lay down the law and set tests (where do we hand in our homework sir?) as if they, personally, represent the only truth possible and should automatically hold some natural authority on the subject.

Of course they don't. 'The truth' in these matters is always what makes the individual happy.

Some people want to pay the premium and use higher resolution files in the same way that some have preferred SACDs to CDs or returned to vinyl LPs (or use valves or prefer active speakers or whatever else is on offer). Good luck and good listening to all of you. Keep buying the gear and keep the industry and the choices going.

I am stubbornly sticking to my autodidactic and selfish ways of using whatever I like in any way I choose that suits me. If your 320k MP3s sound better than my 320k AACs and someone else's 24/96 files sound even better than my Apple Lossless files then well done. You are probably as happy with your setup as I am with mine.

Stuff the homework, the links, the downloads the tests and the overbearing "this is for your own good, now put on these electrodes",  tub-thumping acolytes of 'The One True Way'.

[Question to moderator... why is the word p-e-d-a-g-o-g-i-c-a-l edited by the obscenity software?]

 

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RE: Better mastered music could be on the way!

Steve,

Thanks for the links, I'll download them and let you know what I find.

This is what the people here have to say about 24Bit:

"Traditionally when mastering for final production on CD, the 24/96 master will be “normalized” to 0dB as part of the mastering process. Normalizing the recording effectively introduces digital amplification to ensure the maximum dynamic range offered by the CDs 16bits is utilised. This normalisation is critical for a 16bit recording as any “headroom” in the recording will have a significant impact on the dynamic range. For example -6dB of headroom in a recording would only utilize 15 of the 16bits available.

Unfortunately the normalization process introduces quantization errors in the recording - i.e. some bits of the recording may be unintentionally rounded up or down as part of this process. However the balance between quantization noise and loss of dynamic range is an accepted part of the 16bit mastering process.

At 24bit resolution, the issues surrounding dynamic range are not applicable as a 24bit recording provides an additional 48dB of dynamic range over a 16bit recording.

With Kate’s high resolution downloads we have chosen to leave these recordings at the level they were mixed on the studio tape. We have deliberately chosen not to “normalize” these recordings to avoid introducing any quantization noise as described above. As a result, you may notice that the 24/96 files sound quieter when replayed on 16bit devices such as MP3 players or portable CD players"

 

Even if the above is an exaggeration, and CD is the paramount of digital reproduction, i.e Its impossible to be improved upon, it seems we would all be better off sound back 60 years are using reel to reel tapes!

Regardless of format, if you want better sounding albums, say so here

 

 

 

 

 

 

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RE: Better mastered music could be on the way!

chebby wrote:

I found out for myself that 320k AAC (VBR) sounds as good, to me, as Apple Lossless for my purposes. My 'raw material' is rips from my own CDs (16bit 44.1khz) and I have no interest in 24/96 files (or higher) because there is so little choice and prices are so high.

What the rest of you get up to is of no matter to me.

However, the tone these debates take is toxic to the forum. The same characters 'parachuted in' every time to lay down the law and set tests (where do we hand in our homework sir?) as if they, personally, represent the only truth possible and should automatically hold some natural authority on the subject.

Of course they don't. 'The truth' in these matters is always what makes the individual happy.

Some people want to pay the premium and use higher resolution files in the same way that some have preferred SACDs to CDs or returned to vinyl LPs (or use valves or prefer active speakers or whatever else is on offer). Good luck and good listening to all of you. Keep buying the gear and keep the industry and the choices going.

I am stubbornly sticking to my autodidactic and selfish ways of using whatever I like in any way I choose that suits me. If your 320k MP3s sound better than my 320k AACs and someone else's 24/96 files sound even better than my Apple Lossless files then well done. You are as happy with your setup as I am with mine.

Stuff the homework, the links, the downloads the tests and the overbearing "this is for your own good, now put on these electrodes",  tub-thumping acolytes of 'The One True Way'.

 

I sincerely hope that I haven't come accross as being rude in this thread, that was not my intension at all. I am merely trying to help anyone who wants to to do a proper blind ABX comparison. Smile

It's fine for people to claim that they can hear a difference between lossless audio and properly compressed MP3/AAC files. But if people aren't willing to use good scientific method to come to their conclusion then their claims are unreliable and their credibility is questionable.

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RE: Better mastered music could be on the way!

This thread will only leave divided opinion with each poster thinking their view is correct. What I think we all can agree on is the loudness part of modern recordings which will hopefully be rectified in the not to distant future.

Was going to say I down loaded Bob Marley in 24bit from Linn and just did a comparison with the ripped CD version. The ones in the know – it’s recommended guy’s. The ones needing their ears syringed get it done or go change your equipment because your missing something good from the world of music. There you go that should keep the thread going for a few more pages.

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RE: Better mastered music could be on the way!

sometimesuk wrote:

Steve,

Thanks for the links, I'll download them and let you know what I find.

Glad to be of help. Smile

 

 

sometimesuk wrote:

Regardless of format, if you want better sounding albums, say so here

I would like to sign up to your 'Stop the loudness wars' petition but I have concerns about having to give too many personal details to sign it. I'm all for promoting well mastered music with good dynamic range and I have already signed up to the 'Turn me up' campaign at http://turnmeup.org/

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