Originally Posted by bad1978
I'm a newbie to all this, but I've become really obsessed with high-quality music for the last few months. Be gentle with me, as I may not understand a lot of the really esoteric techno-jargon.
So, I'm working with an LG BP730 Blu-Ray player and Pioneer VSX-1123 receiver.
It seems that no matter what, a ripped file just doesn't have the range as just playing the CD. Even if I play the WAV file straight from the USB port on the Blu-Ray player or the receiver. Apple Lossless files played straight from the receiver sound terrible (so much treble!)
Am I playing a losing game, here? Is it just impossible to accurately recreate CD sound on a computer file?
Two words: sighted evaluation.
You used the word obsession, a word with some standard definitions:
1. Compulsive preoccupation with a fixed idea or an unwanted feeling or emotion, often accompanied by symptoms of anxiety.
2. A compulsive, often unreasonable idea or emotion.
You can't overcome compulsions with sighted evaluations because compulsions bias sighted evaluations.
The standard way to replace compulsions with rational decisions is to avoid bias. The standard way to avoid bias in listening tests is to do level-matched, time-synched, double blind test.
Don't take this personally, because your situation is so common that level-matched, time-synched, double blind tests are the standard means that is used people who develop perceptual coders (MP3, AAC, etc.) and other such software.
"3. Audio quality assessments"
"In order to assess the quality of an audio signal under controlled and repeatable conditions, subjective listening tests using a number of qualified listeners and a selection of
audio sequences are still recognized as being the most reliable way of quality assessment. ITU-R Recommendation BS.1116-1  is used for the evaluation of high-quality
digital audio codecs, exhibiting small impairments of the signal"
You can find out more about EBU recommendation BS 1116-1 here:
"4 Test method
To conduct subjective assessments in the case of systems generating small impairments, it is necessary to select an
appropriate method. The “double-blind triple-stimulus with hidden reference” method has been found to be especially
sensitive, stable and to permit accurate detection of small impairments. Therefore, it should be used for this kind of test"
There is your proof of what I just said abouit DBTs being the standard method for avoiding bias in listening tests.