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post #31 of 46 Old 12-27-2013, 06:02 AM
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Originally Posted by kbarnes701 View Post

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Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

 
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Arny, I am bit of a ripping virgin and always just rip to WAV here. Is there any advantage to FLAC versus WAV? Or v-v of course.


FLAC files are average about half the size of .wav files. If space is an issue and your player handles FLAC files, then FLAC is your friend.


I just finished a ripping project for my space-limited 4 GB Sansa Clip+. The ripper was EAC and the format of choice was 320k Lame MP3s.
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BTW, I hope you are having a good Christmas and Boxing Day!  Best wishes from the UK.


Thank you and yes myself, my wife, my daughter and her husband are with my grand children and their parents which is a rare treat due to distance.

Fabulous! Enjoy!

keith, instal fubar2000 and the available abx plug in for it. use headphones while at ypur computer and experiment.

i cannot tell a difference between cd, flac, wave or 320 kbs mp3's. there may be some super rare material out there that can show differences but it is not common and differences are likely very small.

fwiw, i use flacs for home listening because it makes me feel better. portable devices get loaded up with my high bit rate mp3 files. when i rip i use dbpoweramp to create flac files and foobar to make 320 bps mp3 copies of all files. simple and easy.

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post #32 of 46 Old 12-27-2013, 06:47 AM
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Originally Posted by kbarnes701 View Post

Interesting. I just asked Arny the same thing, before I saw your post.  I have a totally open mind and storage space here isn't an issue. But if I can save space with no detriment to the SQ, then I may as well. Hmmmm....

You know how to do the tests. Check it out for yourself.
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post #33 of 46 Old 12-27-2013, 07:21 AM
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The real interesting thing that somewhat might support the claim that there is a difference: high bit-rate MP3 is perceived by a majority as superior to CD sound.
Go figure.

That's one of the things about preference - the preference coin can land on either face, even quite counter intuitively.

Among encoder experts the word is that 320 k MP3s can sound different with rare pathological sources. If you know how a particular coder works, you may have an advantage when it comes to selecting test material that breaks it.

I thought about this for a while and there may be some relevant insights to be considered.

I don't think everybody realizes how endemic compressed audio is. For years just about everybody was pretty happy with AC-3 or DTS encoded DVD videos and frankly AC-3 has about half the space efficiency of MP3. When it comes to network and cable production and distribution, the odds of lossy compression in your signal path is extreme. Then there is broadcast radio which is also heavily infested with lossy-compressed media, and so is HD radio, internet streaming and just about everything else.

The new reference for most people is lossy-compressed media.

I found the book "This Is your Brain On Music" by Levitan to be a very long but interesting read. One take away is that music listening pleasure is based on memory. So what form of music do most people remember? In 2013 I'd put my money on music that is lossy compressed as being what most people use as their mental reference standard. That means right or wrong it is what most people are going to think is the most pleasurable.

Those of us who mostly listen to live music simply march to the beat of a different drummer.
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post #34 of 46 Old 12-27-2013, 07:22 AM
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67jason, your mentioned "no noticeable difference" is not the same as "will sound identical" I am trying to point out. I have done a number of testing comparing high bitrate MP3 and CD and found that it is not possible to make a firm conclusion that they sound identical, in some cases with no noticeable difference, but in many cases were sounding differently. I never mentioned in my messages that I disagree that they sound very similar.

In my original message I wanted to say that all statements such "will sound identical" without describing conditions or existing proof may sound misleading.
If some one is asking for advise what is good format to store/archive CD, it has to be really reliable method and serve with described results "will sound identical", if any exceptions (as you mentioned) could exist, they have to be mentioned. Someone may lose original CD and unfortunately can realize (in some exceptions) that his stored file is not sounding identically, but the original source not available any more to redo the work.


For example if combine two messages:
Quote:
...Hi-res" has no audible improvement over redbook 16/44...
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....high bit rate MP3 will sound identical to the CD....

It is easy to draw a conclusion: high bit rate MP3 will sound identical to Hi-res audio smile.gif
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post #35 of 46 Old 12-27-2013, 07:37 AM
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Originally Posted by bordo32 View Post

67jason, your mentioned "no noticeable difference" is not the same as "will sound identical" I am trying to point out. I have done a number of testing comparing high bitrate MP3 and CD and found that it is not possible to make a firm conclusion that they sound identical, in some cases with no noticeable difference, but in many cases were sounding differently. I never mentioned in my messages that I disagree that they sound very similar.

In my original message I wanted to say that all statements such "will sound identical" without describing conditions or existing proof may sound misleading.
If some one is asking for advise what is good format to store/archive CD, it has to be really reliable method and serve with described results "will sound identical", if any exceptions (as you mentioned) could exist, they have to be mentioned. Someone may lose original CD and unfortunately can realize (in some exceptions) that his stored file is not sounding identically, but the original source not available any more to redo the work.


For example if combine two messages:
Quote:
...Hi-res" has no audible improvement over redbook 16/44...
Quote:
....high bit rate MP3 will sound identical to the CD....

It is easy to draw a conclusion: high bit rate MP3 will sound identical to Hi-res audio smile.gif

seems like a semantics argument to me. fmw and myself are saying the same thing as far as i am concerned.

hi-res stuff. in order to reliably be able to tell if there is a superior sound, one first needs to know if the redbook master and the hi-res master is the same master. if they are different then one can not say that the hi-res item is superior because it is hi-res, one can easily say that it is superior because it is using a different master.

fwiw, the only hi-res stuff i have is on shiny disks not on a hard drive. i like 'em for the surround aspect rather then being hi-res. i haven't been bothered with other type of hi-res stuff available for downloads.

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post #36 of 46 Old 12-27-2013, 07:48 AM
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The correct way to test is to rip a track to WAV and make another file by converting the WAV to whichever format you want to test. Play everthing on the same computer to make the comparisons. I've don many such comparisons and I cannot tell a high bit rate MP3 from a ripped WAV file or the original CD played on the same drive that was used to make the rip. All kinds of music. Blind ABX testing. But perhaps you can fit one more angel on the head of a pin than I can.
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post #37 of 46 Old 12-27-2013, 08:27 AM
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Originally Posted by FMW View Post

The correct way to test is to rip a track to WAV and make another file by converting the WAV to whichever format you want to test. Play everthing on the same computer to make the comparisons. I've don many such comparisons and I cannot tell a high bit rate MP3 from a ripped WAV file or the original CD played on the same drive that was used to make the rip. All kinds of music. Blind ABX testing. But perhaps you can fit one more angel on the head of a pin than I can.

In some cases an improved technique is to convert the compressed file back to a .wav, and compare the two .wav files. Sometimes there are delay, clicks and pops associated with decoding compressed fles that can unblind the listening test.
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post #38 of 46 Old 12-27-2013, 01:58 PM
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keith, instal fubar2000 and the available abx plug in for it. use headphones while at ypur computer and experiment.

i cannot tell a difference between cd, flac, wave or 320 kbs mp3's. there may be some super rare material out there that can show differences but it is not common and differences are likely very small.

fwiw, i use flacs for home listening because it makes me feel better. portable devices get loaded up with my high bit rate mp3 files. when i rip i use dbpoweramp to create flac files and foobar to make 320 bps mp3 copies of all files. simple and easy.

 

 

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Interesting. I just asked Arny the same thing, before I saw your post.  I have a totally open mind and storage space here isn't an issue. But if I can save space with no detriment to the SQ, then I may as well. Hmmmm....

You know how to do the tests. Check it out for yourself.

 

Thanks guys. Yeah, I am just being lazy I guess - and I so value the opinions of the guys in this thread that I really am prepared to take it on face value.  I will do the tests though... even though I am sure I will hear what you are hearing too. 

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post #39 of 46 Old 12-27-2013, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

In some cases an improved technique is to convert the compressed file back to a .wav, and compare the two .wav files. Sometimes there are delay, clicks and pops associated with decoding compressed fles that can unblind the listening test.

That's interesting. I've never tried it. I suppose every format conversion takes its toll.
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post #40 of 46 Old 12-27-2013, 06:19 PM
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In some cases an improved technique is to convert the compressed file back to a .wav, and compare the two .wav files. Sometimes there are delay, clicks and pops associated with decoding compressed fles that can unblind the listening test.

That's interesting. I've never tried it. I suppose every format conversion takes its toll.

The number of format conversions is the same either way since any format files have to be converted to .wav format to be output by the sound card. You can do it to the files before you play them back, or you can do it dynamically during the playback of the files, but it will be done.
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post #41 of 46 Old 01-05-2014, 12:40 AM
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I used to be of the opinion that WAV and FLAC ,CD or other loseless encodes were the only formats worth listening to . After a long thread here 100 posts at least
I was arguing the point and beating the horse to death and beyond.

Arny and some others here convinced me to try high bit rate mp3 and read up on some theory as turns out I didn't know nearly as much as I thought I did.

After studying and learning some interesting things and listening to the various formats with the A/B test plug in with Foobar 2000 as Arny suggested I now listen to high bit rate mp3 and AAC quite a bit now and it sounds good safe to say these folks enlightened me quit a bit they taught an old dog some new tricks .

I like to use Audacity/Lame quite a bit and get good results converting the files . I also use the Foobar 2000 player
I've used a lot of players professional DAWS and consumer products. Foobar 2000 sounds as good as anything out there IMO.

I just put a new HDD in this 2.5 year old win 7 X 64 computer yesterday the OEM drive developed bad sectors and wasn't fixable . I output with a pro interface so it sounds decent .

No iTunes on this PC anymore it's bloatware IMO anyway . I tried J River 14 last year I think ,nice eye candy is about all I can say about it . I still have it but don't use it in fact I didn't install it on this new drive .

IMO J river or iTunes do not sound any better than foobar 2000 to me ,actually I like Foobar 2000 much better than either one. J river and iTunes both have a following that's fine just not my cup of tea .

I'm listening to some originally Flac and Wav files I have converted with Lame to high bit rate mp3 and AAC. I like them both now that I've learned a bit . I'm listening on some new Sennheiser HD 650's they are pretty decent as phones go IMO and have to say they sound pretty good they will probably be my go to phones for a while. I like them more than my HD 280's and those aren't bad .

I'm Not taking a position as there are folks here much more knowledgeable than I am so the lossey/lossless high res/low res arguments are best left to others although I did the SACD thing for a while a few tears back and finally concluded that at least for me it was a draw .

I do keep WAV and FLAC archives and always rip to lossless but mostly do my personal listening on 256/320 kbs mp3 and AAC now.


If I was starting out I would have Foobar 2000 and Audacity /Lame on my PC.both are free and open source you can chose lossless or lossey whatever you like in either application .

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post #42 of 46 Old 01-05-2014, 03:09 AM
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It is easy to draw a conclusion: high bit rate MP3 will sound identical to Hi-res audio smile.gif

Yes, that's my experience. Sorry it took so long to answer.
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post #43 of 46 Old 01-05-2014, 07:28 AM
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Great, no arguing here, since now you are providing your statement conditions without requiring explanations/proof:
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....that's my experience.
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post #44 of 46 Old 01-05-2014, 09:14 AM
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Want to share my own experience comparing loseless/lossy audio files.
What is strange that so straight forward link - SW audio players, may sound differently. They should do the encoding in the same way and sound the same, but actually some sound differently.
Many listeners prefer uLilith over Foobar, claiming that it does more accurate job playing files.
I tried uLilith player with M2Tech HiFace USB to Coax adapter (with ASIO, WASAPI), using different external DACs. Also tried ReClock, just for curioucity.
As per my experience, it sounds indeed differently, not saying better, something is done in the midrange, even though Japanese developers claiming it does not do any additional processing.
Some people may prefer this.
I like Foobar more, it sounds more close as comparing to OPPO-95.
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post #45 of 46 Old 01-05-2014, 10:37 AM
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As to foobar2000 vs. jriver - I tried jriver last week as a free download with the intention to purchase as a Universal player for all media. I am using foobar now since I put together my media PC with trials of players like dbpoweramp, winamp, monkey, WMP etc. I had trouble with all crashing. Foobar2000 however was the most stable and only crashed when I used some 3rd party plugin in beta.
I was not very impressed with the attempt to use jriver, it would not route to asio outputs of my m-audio souncard - I never had a problem routing anything in foobar, with customized buttons to switch within the display from headphones to speakers etc.- I only was able to use DS which deprived me of the advantages the asio driver of the m-audio card offered.

Foobar2000 offers a range of customization that is not met by any other player I know of - you can keep it as simple as possible or expand it to something that is completely your own, with integration of a host of free or commercial VST plugins, icons to customize display, tagging options, ripping etc. etc. and even developing and using your own scripts.
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post #46 of 46 Old 01-05-2014, 04:16 PM
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Krout wrote;
Foobar2000 offers a range of customization that is not met by any other player I know of - you can keep it as simple as possible or expand it to something that is completely your own, with integration of a host of free or commercial VST plugins, icons to customize display, tagging options, ripping etc. etc. and even developing and using your own scripts.

+1 I'm in agreement there .

Hires Music formats ..............."Why does it sound like a CD ?" ............. "can we make it louder "?
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