HDMI connection - 44 vs 192 sounds different - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 8 Old 07-02-2018, 11:28 AM - Thread Starter
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HDMI connection - 44 vs 192 sounds different

I noticed that Denon/Marantz receivers sound differently when they play 44/16 songs and the same songs up-scaled to 192/24. 44/16 sounds darker and slower. 192/24 sounds brighter and faster.
This is definitely not an upsampler issue. With my friend we checked the phenomenon in 4 different configurations with a Windows 10 PC, Mac Mini, Denon X3300W and Marantz NR1501, with different cables and in different apartments.

1. configuration:
Audirvana player on a Mac Mini plays 44/16 mp3 file. Marantz NR1501 receiver. The song sounds darker.
2. configuration
Audirvana with enabled upsampling to 192/24. The sound is noticeable brighter and faster.
3. configuration
Spotify on a Intel NUC running Windows 10 plays to Denon X3300W. HDMI Audio device is set to 44/16. The song sounds darker.
4.
Spotify on a Windows 10 plays the same song. HDMI Audio device is set to 192/24 (e.g. Windows upsamples the audio stream). The song sounds noticeable faster and brigher.

The easiest way to check the phenomenon on your system is to change HDMI audio device settings to 192/24. On Windows, this settings is available in Control Panel - Sounds - Device - Advanced - Default Format.

What can be the reason receivers sound differently when being served with an upsampled audio signal?
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post #2 of 8 Old 07-02-2018, 11:32 AM
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because you expect them to.
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post #3 of 8 Old 07-02-2018, 11:43 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ccotenj View Post
because you expect them to.
Recorded both variations with Tascam DR-05. Will post a link in the next post (the forum requires 5+ posts to be able to publish links).
Do you hear any difference?
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post #4 of 8 Old 07-02-2018, 11:44 AM - Thread Starter
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Could it be something to do with the receivers themselves? For instance, my 2008 Integra receiver does not support EQ or the use of certain listening modes on 192 kHz material, but that stuff does work with 96 kHz and below material. If I had any EQ set and was switching back and forth between sampling rates, then it'd be switching on and off the EQ automatically, behind the scenes so to speak.

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post #6 of 8 Old 07-02-2018, 01:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by blue 72 View Post
my 2008 Integra receiver does not support EQ or the use of certain listening modes on 192 kHz material, but that stuff does work with 96 kHz and below material.
While both receivers played in direct mode, they may do something different depending on the sample rate of the input signal. I was surprised to find there is a difference.
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post #7 of 8 Old 07-02-2018, 06:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ivan Nikitin View Post
I noticed that Denon/Marantz receivers sound differently when they play 44/16 songs and the same songs up-scaled to 192/24. 44/16 sounds darker and slower. 192/24 sounds brighter and faster.
This is definitely not an upsampler issue. With my friend we checked the phenomenon in 4 different configurations with a Windows 10 PC, Mac Mini, Denon X3300W and Marantz NR1501, with different cables and in different apartments.

1. configuration:
Audirvana player on a Mac Mini plays 44/16 mp3 file. Marantz NR1501 receiver. The song sounds darker.
2. configuration
Audirvana with enabled upsampling to 192/24. The sound is noticeable brighter and faster.
3. configuration
Spotify on a Intel NUC running Windows 10 plays to Denon X3300W. HDMI Audio device is set to 44/16. The song sounds darker.
4.
Spotify on a Windows 10 plays the same song. HDMI Audio device is set to 192/24 (e.g. Windows upsamples the audio stream). The song sounds noticeable faster and brigher.

The easiest way to check the phenomenon on your system is to change HDMI audio device settings to 192/24. On Windows, this settings is available in Control Panel - Sounds - Device - Advanced - Default Format.

What can be the reason receivers sound differently when being served with an upsampled audio signal?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ivan Nikitin View Post
Recorded both variations with Tascam DR-05. Will post a link in the next post (the forum requires 5+ posts to be able to publish links).
Do you hear any difference?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ivan Nikitin View Post
While both receivers played in direct mode, they may do something different depending on the sample rate of the input signal. I was surprised to find there is a difference.
Multiple gear configurations in different rooms, the corroboration of a friend, a common recorder and playback mode; it doesn't matter... If you have knowledge of which file is playing by any means other than the audio alone, human perceptual bias is in play. Simple as that.

To make any sort of conclusion regarding actual audible differences between the files, the experimental method must eliminate (or at least significantly reduce) human perceptual bias as a possible cause of the percieved differences.

Foobar's ABX Comparator is a great tool for doing exactly that. I highly recommend that you give it go.


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post #8 of 8 Old 07-03-2018, 06:18 AM
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Can I hear a difference? Of course not, the quality of sound is limited by what I’m listening on.

Upsampling probably sounds brighter because the processor is adding in data where none exists, using interpolation algorithms. It’s going to sound different/better because you’re expecting it to, as well.

If you like it, do it. If not, leave the digital music alone, often unmodified is best.

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