AVS Forum banner

Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 3 of 3 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
339 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Would anyone care to explain what the following formats do, how they work, what have they improved over their original format (ie. DTS ES, or DD EX)


1. PCM

2. DTS 96/24

3. DTS ES

3. Dolby Digital EX (what's up with the EX?)

4. Pro Logic 2 vs DTS NEO


Thanks!

jorge
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,103 Posts
Sure

General overview: DD and DTS are standards that exist to allow for the creation of multi channel sound through the current existing hardware by using lossy compression technology. This means that sonic information is taken out of the original recording to "fit" the audio content into multiple audio channels (speakers).


DD is compressed "more" than DTS, however, DD's compression algorithm is more efficient. This has lead to many arguments over which is better. Personally, I tend to like the DTS mixes but I don't necessarily think DD is worse by any means. I tend to think when studios add the DTS track, the recording engineers may be putting extra "love" into the mix. Either that, or they are mixing it hotter (louder) and I am being fooled by this :).


I am only talking about the most compressed version DTS in the paragraph above as compared to the least compressed version of DD. The least compressed DTS in noticeably better, but is found in very few DVD titles (mostly concert videos) as I guess it takes up too much space or something...



1) PCM has no compression and is the highest quality of sound (on your list). It is potentially much better than DTS or DD, however it only goes out two channels (because it is not compressed). PCM is the standard used for CD's.btw. There is very little content on DVD that has PCM (usually found in some concerts or music videos -- I have not seen it in a movie track).


2) DTS 96/24: I don't know that much about this standard and there are very few DVD's that have this (someone correct me if I am wrong here or anywhere else for that matter :)). Essentially, it is taking a source that is high resolution PCM, and using DTS's algorithm to compress it to a 1.5 megabits per second bitrate. I personally do not see how this would be better than using "regular" full bitrate dts on a 48/24 (DVD) or 44/16 (CD) source as "regular" full bitrate DTS is also 1.5 mbps. Though it is possible that I am wrong, my guess is this is some kind of marketing tool that may sound different than full bitrate dts but not necessarily better. I am sure that if there are any DTS engineers reading this they will be really mad and come up with a million reasons why I am wrong :D.


3) DTS ES and DD EX are for those that have 6.1 speaker systems. I am not sure, but I think both "derive" the rear center and they are not hardcoded in like the other 5.1 channels. Recording engineers may be able to use DTS ES and hardcode the rear center, though I am not sure how many do or if it is even possible to do so in the first place (someone who actually knows, feel free to chime in once again).


It is important to note, that besides, the addition of an additional channel, DTS ES and DD EX are in no way "better" than DTS and DD. As a matter of fact, if you only have 5.1 channels, you can feel free to choose either one of these standards as your processor will just put the rear center info in your rear speakers and you won't be losing any sonic information.


4) Pro Logic 2 and DTS NEO are "matrix" algorithms. This means they take a recording done in 2 channels (or even one channel possibly -- not sure) and direct some of the sound to your other speakers in a multi channel system. They are complex software programs that try to figure out which sounds (crowd applauding for example) belong in the rear or rear center speaker (as is the case for NEO 6). You can use NEO 6 or the new PLIIx on DD or DTS recordings to make your 5.1 sound track into a 6.1 or 7.1 soundtrack. As to which is better (PLII :)), I really cannot say :) as the last time I said it I got into an argument with someone who knows a lot more than I do. I was entering a battle of wits wholly unarmed :). Many will tell you that it will depend on the recording and you will find that on some DVD's you will like PL2 and on others you will like NEO6.


edit-Other matrix algortithms include Logic 7 (Lexicon and a crowd favorite). Meridian Trifield and Circle Surround II (SRS labs).


I believe that using the matrix technologies like PLII or NEO6 decrease the sound quality of the actual recording being matrixed (oh, boy, gonna get flamed for that one :D). However, the "fun" factor often overwhelms this potential loss of quality for me in movies. In music I don't like it but other people swear by it.


Hope this helps.
 
1 - 3 of 3 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top