2 channel Hi Rez listening - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 01-04-2007, 09:04 PM - Thread Starter
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I have a Denon 2910 and an Onkyo 603 set up that I listen to my Sacds and DVD-Audios on in surround. But I would like to know the best way to listen to 2 channel music with my current set up. I recently bought Neil Young's On the Beach dvd audio but it is in advanced resolution stereo only (176khz/24 bit). Would it be recommended to listen to this thru the 6 cable analog or do I have to listen to it thru a digital out to get the Hi Rez?

And on a related topic. How many of you listen to 2 channel discs with pro logic II or Neo6 to get surround? I listened to the Stones Let it Bleed sacd with pro logic and I have to admit it sounded pretty darn good.
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post #2 of 13 Old 01-04-2007, 10:04 PM
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buc18,

If you have option to select the two-channel hirez version, or disable channels other than front left/right in the player menu, I'd go that route first. If you're lucky to have a receiver that can decode multichannel digital, try similar adjustments on the receiver side and see what sounds better.

I don't have a newer receiver with Neo6. However, my prepro has a trifield and ambisonic mode which will "surroundify" two-channel input. It does sound good.

However... I think properly setup two-channel hifi is simplest, and best in most cases

- Steve O.
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post #3 of 13 Old 01-05-2007, 08:40 AM
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You don't need to do anything for the Neil Young DVD-A. Your player will only play the channels that are active. Leave the connections in place and do everything as you would normally do. DVD-A always defaults to MCH, but if no MCH mix exists, it will go to the one that is there.
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post #4 of 13 Old 01-05-2007, 09:32 AM
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(My habit of downloading user's manuals may be helpful in giving more specific answers for your components)

First, you don't want to try to send hirez audio tracks, even two-channel, over the optical digital or coax digital (SPDIF) outputs. Either you will get no sound, or, for a copy-protected disk, the sound will be there but the 176 kHz 24-bit tracks will be down-rez'd to 44.1 kHz 16-bit, in other words "mere CD quality". (See table, "Sound output from ... digital audio output", on p. 13 of the Denon 2910 manual.)

The simplest way to listen to the two-channel DVD-A (or "advanced resolution stereo") recording is the same way you already listen to multi-channel recordings, via the 5.1 analog connection from player to receiver. Then you will get sound out of the left and right main speakers, and also redirected bass (below 80 Hz) out of the subwoofer, assuming bass management is set up in the player. Just think of it as a 5.1-channel recording with silence on most channels

But with a two-channel high-rez recording, you also have the option of doing all the audio processing in the receiver, rather than the player. I suggest that the best way to do this is: first, connect a pair of RCA cables from the two-channel analog outputs on the player (next to the 5.1-channel outputs) to any unused two-channel analog inputs on the receiver (on your model: Video 1, Video 2, Video 3, CD, or Tape, they're all the same). Second, set the receiver to play from the inputs you just connected. Third, turn off bass management and other processing (such as speaker delay and level settings) in the Denon 2910; I think this is most simply done by selecting Source Direct in the Audio Setup menu (remember to turn Source Direct off again when you next listen to a multi-channel recording). Now you are ready to use the bass management and other options of the receiver.

With the above steps, you also have the option of using Dolby ProLogic II(x) or DTS Neo 6 to create simulated surround sound from any two-channel recording. (I think this is a matter of personal taste, choice may vary with recording or mood, i.e., is today a Prologic II, Neo 6, or two-channel stereo day )

"Purists" might point out that the "audio processing in the receiver" option involves an extra A-to-D and then D-to-A conversion (because the audio signal is sent as analog to the receiver and then internally transformed back to digital to do the processing). I'd suggest that the A-to-D and D-to-A chips (on pretty much all modern receivers) are sufficiently good that the extra conversion step does not harm the sound quality; you can judge what sounds best on your system.
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post #5 of 13 Old 01-05-2007, 09:46 AM
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BTW, I see that Ovation gave a simpler answer (that matches the part of my answer starting with "The simplest way to listen ...").

You can also try my "option of doing all the audio processing in the receiver" if you enjoy comparing the effect of different audio processing options.
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post #6 of 13 Old 01-05-2007, 09:53 AM
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I have several Neil Young high resolution stereo discs including "On the Beach". If the disc has 24-Bit/96kHz LPCM, you can most likely use the digital output from your player. I have "Prairie Wind", "Greatest Hits" and the recent live DVD-V which all include the 24/96 LPCM stereo. I don't recall if "On the Beach" or his other stereo DVD-A discs include the high resolution LPCM. To play the stereo DVD-A or SACD, as indicated you need only do the same as you do with multichannel DVD-A or SACD, select the analog 6-channel input on your amplifier.

Chris
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post #7 of 13 Old 01-05-2007, 10:11 AM
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I myself would stay away from letting the receiver take the analog in, convert it to digital to do bass management and other processing, and then convert back to analog. I would suggest that the ADC/DAC are NOT as good as what the studio used, although I've heard some pretty bad studio stuff too. But I'm a purist, and I'm currently looking to eliminate a single particular resistor in the signal path.

I would also just play the 2 channel without the sub, but my main speakers go pretty low.
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post #8 of 13 Old 01-05-2007, 10:14 AM
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Also, you're defeating the advantages of SACD/DSD when you apply any digital signal processing effects, such as ProLogic II, to the signal. That automatically converts DSD (Direct Stream Digital, the hallmark of SACD) back to PCM.
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post #9 of 13 Old 01-05-2007, 04:20 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for all of the replies. I have been listening to 2 channel just as I do multi-channel: thru the 5.1 analog connection so I guess I have been doing it correctly. For the last year or so the majority of my in-home listening has been from sacd and dvd audio discs which are in surround. But recently I have been buying up some of the high rez stereo releases (such as the Stones ABKCO discs and the aforementioned Neil Young discs) because I am afraid that someday in the not too distant future these will become very scarce as has the surround discs have become. I am just looking for the best way to enjoy listening to stereo releases and get the most out of their resolutions.
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post #10 of 13 Old 01-05-2007, 06:02 PM
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If your speakers are set to SMALL in the player, but you'd like to listen to the hirez stuff "un-bass-managed" through just your front 2 speakers with no sub, you can go into the 2910's setup menu and set it up for "2-channel" as opposed to "multichannel" listening (it will save all your multichannel settings for when you switch it back to "multichannel"). Then, when you listen to the hirez stereo track of an SACD or DVD-A via your analog connections, you'll get it "un-bass-managed" through your 2 front "large" speakers.

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post #11 of 13 Old 01-07-2007, 06:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Gerhard View Post

I have several Neil Young high resolution stereo discs including "On the Beach". If the disc has 24-Bit/96kHz LPCM, you can most likely use the digital output from your player.

Just to clarify - I think you are saying that some music DVDs, that are not DVD-Audio, include 24-bit/96kHz tracks that may be output over an SPDIF (optical or coax digital) interface. On the other hand, true DVD-Audio disks (by definition of the format) must include a copy protection feature that forces "reduction to 16-bit/48kHz" for anything sent over SPDIF. Got it right?
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post #12 of 13 Old 01-07-2007, 08:15 PM
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You got it.
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post #13 of 13 Old 01-07-2007, 08:56 PM
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Some discs that are DVD-A include a 96/24 DAD or DTS track that CAN be passed over SPDIF to a receiver/pre/pro for decoding. Donald Fagan's "Morph the Cat" is an example. So are the Neil Young discs. I have a few others like that, too.

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