Originally Posted by Jess Sayin
I prefer recording 1-bit DSD because it provides flexibility for converting cleanly to other resolutions / bit rates. This - and my preference for hi-res audio - are key considerations for me.
The alleged superiority of DSD is an example of an audiophile myth that was fabricated to obtain a technically-impossible commercial advantage.
Science says that the only relevant quality properties of signal are bandwidth and dynamic range. If you increase either you increase information transfer and if you increase neither then you have no effect on information transfer.
Once a signal is put into the digital domain it will not pick up distortion or noise of any kind unless it is intentionally added.
Both DSD and PCM signals with comparable bandwidth and dynamic range convey the same amount of information. Neither signal has an inherent advantage for information transfer as such. However there are significant technical issues with DSD - it is harder to encode and most commonly-used signal processing operations remain technical mysteries. As a consequence, most DSD encoders are at least partially PCM, an embarassing fact that was admitted by Sony at an AES meeting once the inherent problems with encodeing DSD were revealed in another paper presented at that meeting.
Regarding recording - I do not like the prospects of starting off at 16/44.1 then trying to convert up. I already recorded much of my LP collection using Tascam CDRW700 at 16bit/44.1, but as good a job that has done, I'd like to do better. And it won't work for live music recording.
If you have it in your mind that something won't work, it can never work for you.
There is one big simple fact about 16/44 that is easy to demonstrate with a good technical demonstration: Nobody has ever found that interposing a 16/44 segment into a clean real world audio chain, no matter how high the sample rate, no matter how long the data words, no matter high quality the associated analog equipment, has any audible effect.
In reply to Arnold - I was quoting the "mind-blowing" comment by Conjure1 (above) - but that was a reference to converting vinyl to digital, not live recording. I'm looking for good hardware chain to accomplish the fidelity he says he has captured in the conversion of vinyl to digital.
The most audibly significant part of a hardware chain to convert vinyl to digital are the analog components - the turntable, arm, cartridge, RIAA preamp.Analog to digital conversion has become so good, so cost effective that even inexpensive components for doing this part of the conversion are readily available for a reasonable cost.
Frankly, my ears hear the inadequacy of 44.1 redbook, I never liked it, sounds false, unnatural and harsh to me.
What you need is to personally engage in a blind test showing the audible effects of 44/16 encoding on any audio signal that you choose.
Or, you can read about some gentlemen who did the same - professional journal, peer-reviewed, and all that:
"Claims both published and anecdotal are regularly made for audibly superior sound quality
for two-channel audio encoded with longer word lengths and/or at higher sampling rates than
the 16-bit/44.1-kHz CD standard. The authors report on a series of double-blind tests comparing the analog output of high-resolution players playing high-resolution recordings with
the same signal passed through a 16-bit/44.1-kHz “bottleneck.” The tests were conducted for
over a year using different systems and a variety of subjects. The systems included expensive
professional monitors and one high-end system with electrostatic loudspeakers and expensive
components and cables. The subjects included professional recording engineers, students in
a university recording program, and dedicated audiophiles. The test results show that the
CD-quality A/D/A loop was undetectable at normal-to-loud listening levels, by any of the
subjects, on any of the playback systems. The noise of the CD-quality loop was audible only
at very elevated levels.
If there's consensus that 98% can't tell the difference between a good 16-bit/44.1 recording and hi-res DSD, as experiments and a few salesmen I know suggest, there's still that 2% who CAN tell and I'm squarely in that group.
The current box score for that is 0.0 percent.