Debate Thread: Scott's Hi-res Audio Test - Page 70 - AVS Forum
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post #2071 of 2920 Old 07-16-2014, 07:22 PM
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Once, years ago, I was walking 8th avenue above 42nd street in New York. A girl approached me and said

"Wanna date?"

"Sure! How much?"

"Fifty Dollars!"

My reply - "Sorry, I don't work for less than a hundred" and kept walking.


------

PS: Do I need these or not...

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post #2072 of 2920 Old 07-16-2014, 08:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Foggy1 View Post
when did shorthairs develop a sense of smell?
LOL...if he quit running for a minute or two I'd ask him. Maybe smell wasn't the intended sense.
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post #2073 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 11:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Chu Gai View Post
Sure, if we averaged out everything, individual successes would be lost, and after so many correct answers, which don't suggest chance, one might well come to the erroneous conclusion that it can't be heard.

Few findings in the realm of science are definitive and we often read that results suggest sayings like further work is necessary. This way we get a more complete understanding. If I've understood some of what Fielder has written, he's a proponent of hi-rez. Contained within that, is that the playback system should be capable of comparable dynamics. In your case, Amir, the headphones you used have a FR of 20-16K I believe with no stated tolerance. Their measurements look something like this,



As to what the HP headphone output is capable of, i dont know. One question that comes to mind is if the reason you're picking up differences in any way due IM considerations and how could we test for that?

Another thought is what would the results be if you were to rig the PC such that you could feed your Stax headphones?

Keying in on snippets is good to nail what may be the problem or most taxing areas. People are generally going to listen to musical pieces in their entirety which makes me wonder how does the ability to discriminate change when one does so?

Another question is can the difference be heard without earphones?

Again, let's keep sight of the forest: extravagant claim after claim, year after year (going on over a decade now), that 'hi rez' sounds obviously and distinctly better than Redbook....and not just over headphones.

So, does it actually require golden ears, and possibly headphones, to hear a difference ? (and we haven't even really tested *preference* )
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post #2074 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 11:46 AM
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If you pay for "better audio quality", it can be provided. How that "better audio quality" is reproduced... "it depends".
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post #2075 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by krabapple View Post
Another question is can the difference be heard without earphones?

Again, let's keep sight of the forest: extravagant claim after claim, year after year (going on over a decade now), that 'hi rez' sounds obviously and distinctly better than Redbook....and not just over headphones.

So, does it actually require golden ears, and possibly headphones, to hear a difference ? (and we haven't even really tested *preference* )
I don't know. From what I'm reading some folks, like Amir, are picking up on reliable differences, notably with Arny's key files, and he's done it with headphones which have a limited upper frequency response as well as the Stax which go well above 35K. That's pretty impressive. What I don't know is whether the PC's output is clean. There are some pretty knowledgeable people who may have the means to test for that.

One thought I have is what happens when you subject the files to the program AudioDiffMaker? What does tha look and sound like? Also, if you took the hi-res file and high passed it then listened to it at the same volumes, could you hear anything?

As it stands, it seems that some folks can hear differences with headphones by keying in on certain segments. I don't know what would happen with speakers. As to preferences, further work I guess.

On a side note, I find the stalking, bullying, efforts at humiliation, and character assassination deplorable.

"I've found that when you want to know the truth about someone that someone is probably the last person you should ask." - Gregory House
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post #2076 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 01:28 PM
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First of all , Arny's file link is buried in this thread and not at all straightforward to find. It's not even labelled in the post containing it. It's not findable by searching 'jangling' or 'keys' for example. So for those who need it:


Arny's Keys Jangling files


Second, if the full-band 2496 is used as the reference, it looks like two variables are changing here : SR and bit depth. The 'limited' files, I am guessing, were downsampled from 2496 to 16bit/X SR, then upconverted again to 2496? Or was there some other workflow? (also, the files really aren't named well...since the full band file is named '2496' -- that is, bit depth followed by SR -- then the others should have been called 1616, 1622, 1632, 1644.)


Using Sennheiser nonsealed 'Skyping' headset headphones, fooABX (no DSP, no replaygain), and sitting near a window (I can hear plenty of street noise while wearing the headphones), in other words, *very* casual conditions, I achieved thse results (using 16 trials per comparison):
16/16 on a 16 bit/16kHz vs 24bit/96kHz test,
14/16 on 16/22 vs 24/96
7/16 on a 16/32 vs 24/96

So, I 'passed' the first two at the p<0.05 significance level. I might well be able to 'pass' the last one using truly sealed phones, a rig that would let me raise the amplitude (it's already maxed out on this computer, and the levels are still low -- I am not 100% sure, btw, whether it's resampling or not), and a quieter listening environment. Certainly by the second or third trial of the second test, I was focusing on just one short passage that was a 'tell'. I expect it will take a 'tell' to pass any of the 'harder' comparisons. It's not like the differences are 'obvious' just from flipping randomly back between A and B. Btw, on online 'hearing tests' using pure tones, I've found my hearing is limited to about 16 kHz at normal playback levels.

If people are passing the test (i.e. getting a score with a p<0.05) all the way up to 16/44 vs 24/96, then one thing to do would be to change just one variable -- like, the SR -- and retest.

If I find time I can run AudioDiffmaker on pairs of files and post results.
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post #2077 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 01:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chu Gai View Post
On a side note, I find the stalking, bullying, efforts at humiliation, and character assassination deplorable.
That pretty well nails my impression, too.

I like Amirm's technical expertise and depth of resources, I like Arny's "Wait a minute there" approach, and I like StereoEditor's magazine.

Go figure...

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post #2078 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 02:41 PM
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"People would know that careful production of 16/44 gives them just as good sound as hires."

"Careful production" in a real recording studio or a professional field recording does not include 16-bit word lengths. 24 bit conversion from the first analog input and significantly higher internal dynamic range for level adjustment/plug-in's, are cheap enough that there is no excuse for degrading a signal in the digital domain on the way to an archived file merely to save storage space/bandwidth.

What is important is:
The Performance. Without this, there is nothing.
The Space. Real is 10^8 better than simulated space. Performers play better in nice spaces.
Recordist: know what to do, with what, and when, or something less. They deserve fans and royalties for jobs well-done.
Transducers: microphones, pickups. Upper-quality limits are bounded here.
Pre-amplifiers: good ones work inaudibly and are compatible with the microphone. Audible models are hated or have a cult following (and pricing!).
This is The Feed, alleged to be "high-resolution". I would call it "the whole cloth" when recorded well onto a multi-track recorder, later to be chopped into a salable garment.

If The Feed is a Mid-Side 2-channel microphone signal (placed perfectly, natch'), it hasn't been stepped-on much, and can be decoded to your taste at home to what I would consider a good documentary reproduction. If the M-S signal is converted to a standard L+R signal, the end user loses a lot of flexibility to make it sound "good" in their various playback situations. I use a set of 4 WECo 111C transformers to do this, but a couple of opamps will do the same thing cheap and small.

I disagree completely that A/D-D/A cycling is inaudible. Perhaps, a single conversion is relatively transparent, but the hundreds of conversions that happen during a multi-track analog-digital hybrid production are noticed and accounted for in the final product. Serious producers do their best to maintain quality to the commercial release by making the best master they can. That's what high-quality low-pass filters are for.

Your ears cannot handle 24 bit dynamic range. The noise floor is air molecules in your head, see OSHA time/level regulations for avoiding hearing damage. DJ's love loud because of their permanent threshold shift. They can't hear quiet any more. Lots of adults have this problem, esp. in hf (above 5KHz). Many adults over 30 have almost no hearing above 12KHz (more than 20dB down from voice frequencies) in addition to threshold shift.
Russian asthmatic girls seem to have extraordinary hf detection ability.

OTOH, commercial releases are subject to many pressures other than sound quality. Fashion is a major contributor to sound degradation. Remember the "volume wars" of 1997-2005, when clipping an already-compressed signal into an A/D converter (then dropping the level 0.1dB and claiming it is merely "louder than your master") was a requirement in rock music?

The real dynamic range of useful music is not more than 30dB, which can be demonstrated with calibrated levels and any mixer with faders or panpots.

20dB down on one channel of a centered stereo signal is a hard-pan the other way.

A little bit of perceptual panning can be had with sub-3mS delay (useful when you want to leave average levels alone). It's program-dependent.

This is not new knowledge. Bell Labs documented it in the 1930's. BBC researchers probably knew about it earlier than that. It didn't matter when no one had synchronized 2-channel recorders and the money people had other priorities (new weapons for killing Europeans).

In general, more channels is going to result in more possible problems (and billable hours!) in production and playback, but the program trumps the production, so more happens.

Has anyone noticed how little I attribute to playback gear? Real music in person is why recordings are great.

Cheers.

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post #2079 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 02:55 PM
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Ruh Roh Reorge!
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post #2080 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 03:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rufus13 View Post
"
I disagree completely that A/D-D/A cycling is inaudible. Perhaps, a single conversion is relatively transparent, but the hundreds of conversions that happen during a multi-track analog-digital hybrid production are noticed and accounted for in the final product. Serious producers do their best to maintain quality to the commercial release by making the best master they can. That's what high-quality low-pass filters are for.
Not sure why there would be hundreds of *serial* A/D -- D/A -- A/D cycles in a production, unless there are lots of steps where you need to run the signal through analog gear in between digital tweaks, and if you do *that*, why on earth would you attribute accumulated noise/degradation to the *conversion* rather than the analog gear itself?
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post #2081 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 04:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rufus13 View Post

What is important is:
The Performance. Without this, there is nothing.
Nice post, rufus...


I'd take another step backwards and say:

What is most important (to me) is:
The Composition. Without this, there is nothing.

It can be performed by the book or given a loose and stylized interpretation, or even be composed on the fly, but without that, it's not music, just sound.

I'll be back later...


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post #2082 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 04:33 PM
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PS: Do I need these or not...

The flare of horn looks to be for sending out the soundwave. For gathering, it would look more concave like this.

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post #2083 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 05:09 PM
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Get both.

I've had fun with parabolic microphones. Not hi-fi microphoning, but great for recording speech or tweets "over there". Like loudspeakers, bigger is better.
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post #2084 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 05:10 PM
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Where's the +1 or "thumbsup" button?
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post #2085 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 05:37 PM
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Not sure why there would be hundreds of *serial* A/D -- D/A -- A/D cycles in a production, unless there are lots of steps where you need to run the signal through analog gear in between digital tweaks, and if you do *that*, why on earth would you attribute accumulated noise/degradation to the *conversion* rather than the analog gear itself?
If you look at some of the converter stages in some of the most fun older digital effects boxes, they can't help but contribute to "the sound". Analog stages are not always so impressive, either. Studio people do things that are not and can not be "hi-fi" all the time in search of some wanted result inside the time/money available. This is mostly for pop/dance music, but sometimes sneaks over into "more serious" music productions.

continue...drifting...OT:

I like good analog recorders. It's dollars per minute to use them, owned or rented, plus availability of 2" tape. Good digital is not cheap, either. Good help is the most expensive thing of all, and worth it.

There is no free lunch. If the sign says so, it means the drinks are weak or 3x as expensive as they would be.

If we are talking about good value at the bottom end of 2-channel repro, I nominate the Lepai LP-2020A+. I will go out on a limb and declare that it's the best $20 I've ever spent on an amp. Folks need speakers to match them, and I found a pair of used TEAC small panels made under license from NXT that beat all other $5 loudspeakers. Even better than this: the whole thing can be run on 12v dc from a deep cycle battery seemingly forever. Input can be from an ipod/iphone/laptop, component pre-amp whatever. Most-perfect for off-grid dry camping in an rv.
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post #2086 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by RayDunzl View Post
Nice post, rufus...


I'd take another step backwards and say:

What is most important (to me) is:
The Composition. Without this, there is nothing.

It can be performed by the book or given a loose and stylized interpretation, or even be composed on the fly, but without that, it's not music, just sound.
Glad you added that - I'd hate to see some of Keith Jarrett's spontaneous improvisations be characterized as "just sound."
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post #2087 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 06:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RayDunzl
The composition. Without this, there is nothing

Actually John Cages most famous composition - 4.33 minutes - is nothing.
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post #2088 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 06:14 PM
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Originally Posted by krabapple View Post
Not sure why there would be hundreds of *serial* A/D -- D/A -- A/D cycles in a production, unless there are lots of steps where you need to run the signal through analog gear in between digital tweaks, and if you do *that*, why on earth would you attribute accumulated noise/degradation to the *conversion* rather than the analog gear itself?
In the world of recording, it's pretty-well understood that the most important conversion is the first one, where a mic pre signal gets turned into a bit stream for a mixer or recorder. When the first bunch of 12 bit or 16 bit recorders became available, manufacturers included instructions to set levels as close to 0dB Full-Scale but not go over (very much very often) or there would be undesirable (horrible) distortion. This was so that they could claim a very high signal to noise ratio, compared to good analog tape recorders like a full-track mono 1/4" AG-440b at 15ip/s (70dB, no nr). Not very many people looked at how that's not comparing apples to apples, since overload on the Ampex was gentle and almost desirable in some kinds of music. But, the new recorders ran on cheap media, like VHS tape (ADAT) or tiny-video-tape (DAT), so mostly forgiven. Cheap and terrible wins! Mass media say: DIGITAL GOOD! DIGITAL NEW PERFECT FOREVER! BUY NOW! As usual, the truth is somewhere else.

But wait, years later there are 24 bit recorders. Even cheaper, hooray! The extra dynamic range (more than 16-19 bits of useful) provides "headroom" not unlike the ignored feature of an analog magnetic recorder, but only if you know about it. Manufacturers still tell users to set levels near zero dB, as if it was 1984. Smart users find where 0dB is and reduce the input by 20dB, making pretty clean recordings of whatever the line gives. You also don't need to use products like APHEX DOMINATOR limiter, unless you like that kind of thing.

Recording studios need lotta lotta inputs, like >100 (sometimes). They have big investment in big analog mixers, big analog recorders, big patch bays, big racks of 19" wide analog and digital effects boxes and don't want to mess with things that work. The routing is complex. Send and return 1-96 and patching mults delivered over trays of Belden mediatwist UTP cable (miles of cable) are reasonably common. Rack effects are designed to be sold to these kind of installs, so they have the right connectors (analog 1/4" TRS and XLR) for i/o, they also have 120V input, power supply for the analog and digital sections. Many lights and knobs/buttons on the front. There is only one that might be the hi-fi mode, "bypass", which is hopefully not a trip through the converters but a switch directly from input to output. You feel my pain yet?
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post #2089 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 06:24 PM
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Let's ask a Composer!

The most important thing in art is The Frame. For painting: literally; for other arts: figuratively --
because, without this humble appliance, you can't know where The Art stops and The Real World begins.

You have to put a 'box' around it because otherwise, what is that **** on the wall? If John Cage, for instance,
says, "I'm putting a contact microphone on my throat, and I'm going to drink carrot juice, and that's my
composition," then his gurgling qualifies as his composition because he put a frame around it and said so.

"Take it or leave it, I now will this to be music." After that it's a matter of taste. Without the frame-as-announced,
it's a guy swallowing carrot juice.

So, if music is the best, what is music?

Anything can be music, but it doesn't become music until someone wills it to be
music, and the audience listening to it decides to perceive it as music.

Most people can't deal with that abstraction -- or don't want to.

They say: "Gimme the tune. Do I like this tune? Does it sound like another tune that I like? The more familiar
it is, the better I like it.

Hear those three notes there? Those are the three notes I can sing along with. I like those notes very, very much.
Give me a beat. Not a fancy one. Give me a GOOD BEAT -- something I can dance to. It has to go boom-bap,
boom-boom-BAP.

If it doesn't, I will hate it very, very much. Also, I want it right away -- and then, write me some more songs like
that -- over and over and over again, because I'm really into music."

-The Real Frank Zappa Book

I'll be back later...


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post #2090 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 07:37 PM
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Um, OK.


Sooooo........... HDMI jitter, likely to be an audible problem for home audio consumers or not?
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post #2091 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 08:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chu Gai View Post
On a side note, I find the stalking, bullying, efforts at humiliation, and character assassination deplorable.

I appreciate the technical discussions in this thread. At its heart, the topic of this thread the attainment of high accuracy in audio reproduction. Unfortunately, there are far too many instances where the fidelity of the topic is badly impaired by a lot of "emotional noise" in the discussion.


I have not posted in this thread before and I very likely will not again but I wanted to inject something that I hope will help increase the civility of the discussions.


It is easy to see which posters have taken sides. Apparently, they will not accept anything said by someone on other side without replying with some unkind remark. It seems as if the people on these sides could not amiably discuss how to make root beer floats. Do I add the ice cream to the root beer or pour the root beer over the ice cream? Whichever is preferred by one, it will be attacked by another and the dispute will go on for post after post.


I agree with Chu Gai it is deplorable. Perhaps we all could learn to read the posts without looking at who wrote them and then respond objectively to what is said rather than to who said it?
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post #2092 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 08:18 PM
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Um, OK.


Sooooo........... HDMI jitter, likely to be an audible problem for home audio consumers or not?

That answer will take another 70 pages. Be patient


- Rich
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post #2093 of 2920 Old 07-17-2014, 10:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rufus13 View Post
Recording studios need lotta lotta inputs, like >100 (sometimes). They have big investment in big analog mixers, big analog recorders, big patch bays, big racks of 19" wide analog and digital effects boxes and don't want to mess with things that work.
That doesn't exist for the most part nowadays, particularly with modern films and music being mixed "in the box" in Pro Tools. I have sat through mixing sessions on major Hollywood films where they were going beyond 600, 700, even 800 tracks, all digital, all the time, slaving multiple Pro Tools HD systems together. They left analog consoles and patch bays behind 15 years ago.

All motion picture sound is still being done at 48kHz / 24-bit, and the general belief is they need the wide dynamic range just to help avoid distortion and give them more adjustment range during processing later on. The only time they need a higher sampling frequency is on the rare cases where they're dealing with sound effects that have to be speed-changed later on -- like taking a giant thump and slowing it down by half to create the walking sounds of Godzilla or the Transformers.

But for the final mix, 48kHz seems to be enough. I would question as to whether there's much beyond about 18kHz anyway, even in harmonic content and noise. It gets pretty thin up there, even with wide-range orchestral content.

The AES has done some extensive tests with high-res files, and I think the gist of it is that the results are mixed, especially with analog material recorded prior to (say) 1980. I tend to doubt there's much 25kHz-30kHz content in a 1975 master tape.

I still like the idea of high-res downloads, if only because it's a chance for musicians to make more money, for audiophiles to buy non-compressed content, and for record labels to make more money. I don't see a down side. I'm far more concerned about our current inability to get lossless files from Apple, Amazon, and the major download companies. I know there are niche companies offering HD downloads, and I know Neil Young's Pono is "right around the corner," but it'd be nice to have 3,000,000 potential high-res lossless albums available for only a slight premium over the usual 256kbps files.
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post #2094 of 2920 Old 07-18-2014, 12:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Marc Wielage View Post
That doesn't exist for the most part nowadays, particularly with modern films and music being mixed "in the box" in Pro Tools. <snip>They left analog consoles and patch bays behind 15 years ago.
I'll have to remind my people using tape and big consoles that they are so much not with the fashions made in the big money centers.

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All motion picture sound is still being done at 48kHz / 24-bit, and the general belief is they need the wide dynamic range just to help avoid distortion and give them more adjustment range during processing later on. <snip> I would question as to whether there's much beyond about 18kHz anyway, even in harmonic content and noise. It gets pretty thin up there, even with wide-range orchestral content.
+1. 48KHz sample allowing 24KHz audio is good enough for the real world. 96KHz program rarely has audio content above 24KHz, so why bother except for effects?
One application I found for 96KHz sampling was to speed the transcription of voice minutes of important meetings. 8x tape speed gave real-time playback at 8KHz sample rate and better-than-telephone audio quality.

If studios used the whole available dynamic range of a 24 bit system and attempted to put the noise floor even with the breathing and rustle of a really superb audience, they would have to install jet-engine powered horns to hit 170dB at the seat. I think modern movies are too loud.
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post #2095 of 2920 Old 07-18-2014, 04:01 AM
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I'll have to remind my people using tape and big consoles that they are so much not with the fashions made in the big money centers.
What city are you in? This is not happening in LA, not anymore. They do occasionally bounce rhythm sections to analogue tape, but for the most part, it's all Pro Tools now from what I see. (And to some extent, Nuendo and some of the little semi-pro software out there.)

I personally think great music can be made in analogue or in digital, but a lot of the results lie with the people making the final decision, plus the signal chain used in the recording. In truth, the microphones and the preamps make up a huge part of the final sound quality, along with the room itself and the processing used. I don't think analogue or digital matter that much anymore, as long as it's done at a high enough level, with experienced people using good taste.

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If studios used the whole available dynamic range of a 24 bit system and attempted to put the noise floor even with the breathing and rustle of a really superb audience, they would have to install jet-engine powered horns to hit 170dB at the seat. I think modern movies are too loud.
I think a lot about overall loudness depends on the settings and acoustics in the specific playback room. Most films today are mixed for a program level of 85dB, with Dolby Level 7 on the output from the projection room, and a lot of films I hear at the local theaters are actually OK. There are the occasional films that blast me out of my seat, and I always take along a pair of foam earplugs just to knock that extra 6-7dB down.

I'm well aware of the pros and cons of digital systems, and I've been recording with digital since about 1984 (on a Sony PCM F-1), and using Pro Tools since about 1996. With the ITU R128 loudness standards -- also used in America as part of the ATSC standards -- they can tame the dynamic range pretty well. 95% of most of the American network TV shows I hear sound fine, and I think maybe 75% of the Blu-ray mixes sound fine. But once in awhile, you hear one where you go, "whoa... what the hell did these idiots do now?"

Interestingly, some of the worst sonic experiences I've had in theaters have been in Imax rooms. I clocked Man of Steel as hitting about 108dB peaks during a screening at Universal in June of 2013, and that's way, way, way too loud for humans. Some of the people around me were literally plugging their ears. Many pro mixers in LA have complained about how too many theaters tend to goose the levels a little bit, on the assumption that audiences will complain more if it's a little too soft than if it's a little too loud. Me, I say play it exactly where it was intended. The standards exist; all they have to do is observe them.
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post #2096 of 2920 Old 07-18-2014, 05:10 AM
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Not sure why there would be hundreds of *serial* A/D -- D/A -- A/D cycles in a production, unless there are lots of steps where you need to run the signal through analog gear in between digital tweaks, and if you do *that*, why on earth would you attribute accumulated noise/degradation to the *conversion* rather than the analog gear itself?
Indeed. Given the low cost, high performance, and ubiquity of digital processing and recording, there's no necessary reason for repeated trips through the analog domain in these days. People can do it if they want to, but they don't have to.

I've experimented with the audibility of round-tripping audio through the analog domain. With really high quality converters (those in a LynxTWO for example) something like 20+ round trips are possible without any reliably audible effects.

People who want to investigate this for themselves can download relevant test files from http://ethanwiner.com/aes/ under the heading "SoundBlaster Generations". An hour spent with those files and FOOBAR2000 + the ABX plug in will dispell any misapprehensions. This is especially true given that the audio interface that Ethan used performed at a far lower level then a benchmark pro audio interface such as the LynxTWO.
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post #2097 of 2920 Old 07-18-2014, 05:23 AM
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Actually John Cages most famous composition - 4.33 minutes - is nothing.
Is it available in hi-rez?
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post #2098 of 2920 Old 07-18-2014, 07:22 AM
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Is it available in hi-rez?

Can you hear the difference between 4.33 in low-rez or high-rez? anyway, you can download MP3 320 kbps/ M4A 320 kbps here (check out the preview ), and that is all i could find.
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post #2099 of 2920 Old 07-18-2014, 07:53 AM - Thread Starter
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I've experimented with the audibility of round-tripping audio through the analog domain. With really high quality converters (those in a LynxTWO for example) something like 20+ round trips are possible without any reliably audible effects.

People who want to investigate this for themselves can download relevant test files from http://ethanwiner.com/aes/ under the heading "SoundBlaster Generations". An hour spent with those files and FOOBAR2000 + the ABX plug in will dispell any misapprehensions. This is especially true given that the audio interface that Ethan used performed at a far lower level then a benchmark pro audio interface such as the LynxTWO.
OK guys. You must be playing with me. You really can't tell the difference here? Here are my quick results. I skipped down to 5th generation (five times going from analog to digital and back):
=========
foo_abx 1.3.4 report
foobar2000 v1.3.2
2014/07/18 06:34:21

File A: C:\Users\Amir\Music\Ethan Soundblaster\sb20x_original.wav
File B: C:\Users\Amir\Music\Ethan Soundblaster\sb20x_pass5.wav


06:34:21 : Test started.
06:35:00 : 01/01 50.0%
06:35:10 : 01/02 75.0%
06:35:21 : 01/03 87.5%
06:35:46 : 02/04 68.8%
06:35:58 : 03/05 50.0%
06:36:19 : 03/06 65.6% <----- Difference found
06:36:28 : 04/07 50.0%
06:36:40 : 05/08 36.3%
06:36:51 : 06/09 25.4%
06:37:02 : 07/10 17.2%
06:37:11 : 08/11 11.3%
06:37:25 : 09/12 7.3%
06:37:36 : 10/13 4.6%
06:37:47 : 11/14 2.9%
06:37:58 : 12/15 1.8%
06:38:10 : 13/16 1.1%
06:38:24 : 14/17 0.6%
06:38:34 : 15/18 0.4%
06:38:50 : 16/19 0.2%
06:38:58 : 17/20 0.1%
06:39:12 : 18/21 0.1%
06:39:21 : 19/22 0.0%
06:39:38 : Test finished.

----------
Total: 19/22 (0.0%)


Above I am showing my search for critical section. So when I tested the single generational loss (i.e. "most difficult") I knew what to listen for:

foo_abx 1.3.4 report
foobar2000 v1.3.2
2014/07/18 06:40:07

File A: C:\Users\Amir\Music\Ethan Soundblaster\sb20x_original.wav
File B: C:\Users\Amir\Music\Ethan Soundblaster\sb20x_pass1.wav


06:40:07 : Test started.
06:41:03 : 01/01 50.0%
06:41:16 : 02/02 25.0%
06:41:24 : 03/03 12.5%
06:41:33 : 04/04 6.3%
06:41:53 : 05/05 3.1%
06:42:02 : 06/06 1.6%
06:42:22 : 07/07 0.8%
06:42:34 : 08/08 0.4%
06:42:43 : 09/09 0.2%
06:42:56 : 10/10 0.1%
06:43:08 : 11/11 0.0%
06:43:16 : Test finished.

----------
Total: 11/11 (0.0%)


So I started at 6:34 AM and finished at 6:43 AM for a total of 9 minutes. What I am supposed to do for the rest of the hour Arny?

By the way, I am traveling and the headphone I have is my Shure IEM. So now we have results across three different headphones.

Arny do you honestly not hear the difference???

By the way the techno clip Ethan picked is not ideally suited for this type of testing yet the audible difference is there.
Charles R, stereoeditor and isa like this.

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Founder, Madrona Digital
"Insist on Quality Engineering"
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post #2100 of 2920 Old 07-18-2014, 09:17 AM
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That answer will take another 70 pages.
You mean "none answer" will. Because that's what happened.
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