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mp3 surround sound


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I know mp3's are only stereo, but recently I was listening to some THX trailers and dolby surround tests and they were in surround (sounds distinctly going from side to side and back to front, as well as around).

Do sound cards do some kind of surround decoding to stereo playback? FYI, I have an SB PCI512.

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You were listening to mp3s and you got surround sond?


It must have been an illusion, when I listened to those trailers, I kinda heard the sound going from front to back etc. but I figured it was because of my weird speaker placement.

mp3s are definitely not surrond-capable.

The only possibility is that your soundcard or winamp make use of some kind of DSP, but I've never heard of anything like that for a soundcard, and the DSP for winamp don't give surround sound but supposedly "improved" sound. Yeah right. But that's another story.

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Maybe you can explain to me how MP3's are not compatible with Surround Sound? All MP3 is/does is compress a signal then decompress it. If that signal was a Surround Sound signal before it was compressed, it is still a Surround Sound signal after it is decompressed. And if you ran that decompressed signal through a Surround Sound decoder it would decode the signal. Remember that a Dolby Pro Logic Surround signal is no more than a regular stereo signal. The decoder uses a fixed algorithm to extract the center, and surround channels. It is just and analog process.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Ummm...the question here iz: "Iz MP3's Surround Sound?" and not, "When decompressed." Of course if you decompress an MP3(@ 128kps, can be ripped to CD quality) it wuld support surround, but MP3's are Stereo at its best. Just wanted to clarify.



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Granted, an mp3 can be made surround with prologic processing or a DSP, like any other stereo signal. I've said that was a possibility in my first response, you'll notice. But that doesn't make it a surround signal!!!

A normal stereo CD can be "made" surround if I apply prologic decoding to it, or if I use some kind of DSP on it. Doesn't make the CD surround, does it?

No, you cannot take a surround signal (i.e. dolby digital 5.1 or dts or other) and make it an mp3 while keeping it's surround properties while compressing it. First of all, surround signals are always compressed, to a certain degree. That's partly why you need a special decoder to decode them.

But you don't need a decoder to play mp3s, do you? That's because an mp3 is stereo. All the time. Surround mp3s don't exist. If they did, how easy would it be to rip a movie using mp3 for the audio? Impossible.

Now, I'll be going into an explanation, but I'm not sure of it completely, so if I'm wrong please correct me.

I think mp3 processing/encoding can only be applied to a stereo signal. So how did those dts and dolby digital sounds get encoded into mp3? Simple, they weren't. I could, for example, take the stero out of my dvd player, run it to my computer, record the signal and then compress it into an mp3. The surround was downmixed to stereo byt the DVD player, then compressed to mp3. Hope it's clear.

The above explanation also explains why mp3s CAN'T be decompressed to their original surround format. They weren't in a surround format to start with! And no, you couldn't upmix the stero signal back to AC3 or DTS.

About surround music. Of course it exists. Not only on DVDs which feature shows (like the Eagles, Ricky Martin or Santana) and a dolby digital or DTS soundtrack, but also on CD. How?

Some cds are offered in DTS 5.1 surround. You need a DTS decoder to be able to enjoy those. There are several albums that are out in that format, mostly surround versions of popular albums.

Check out http://store.dtsonline.com/cd-frames.html for more on this.

Hope it clears things up a bit!

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Go Seb, tell 'em!!! j/k

Thanks for the link, I'm looking forward to playing around with the DTS decoding that I will have for my Pros soon. Are any of those CDs noticeable better than the others? My tastes run towards Clapton/Eagles/Allman Bros/Steve Miller Band/Beck/Joe Cocker/Steely Dan and throw in some George Strait for variety. How bout those sampler CDs? $25 is a lot to spend if it sucks.

Also, besides Saving Private Ryan, what's a really good DTS DVD?



Who knows what evil lurks in the darkness of The Kave ?

www.thekave.net Home of The Klipschmonster!

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There's a sampler CD that's $5 and a sampler DVD that's $10 i think. It's somewhere on the dts site.

as for good dts cds and dvds...

i don't know. I know the Eagles DVd is awesome, but apart from that, I'd say any dts soundtrack is worth checking out.

i have not had any experience with dts cds.

if i was to order the sample one, it'd cost me $5 for the CD and $23 for shipping!!

pretty stupid.


i must mention that i downloaded the .wav file that's on the dts site somewhere and burned it on a cd. it's basically the beginning of a song in dts. the effect of dts music is awesome!

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CD audio is 2 channels at 16bit, so it is stereo sound. Surround sound is really hardware or software "enhanced" sound using different timing to imitate surround sound effects. It is meant to "trick" the ears using psycho-acoustic technology. Dolby Digital and DTS both use this. Surround sound can be emulated by hardware or software DSP. Some new sound cards can do this. I bought the new Turtle Beach Santa Cruz with built-in DSP, and it makes a huge different in sound reproduction. Surround sound is definitely in effect.





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