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Edgar

Outcome of the HD-Audio Challenge II

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1 hour ago, Edgar said:

 

For so many years I shot film, mostly B&W, Panatomic X at ASA 25, developed my own film and printed myself.

 

Several years ago I bought my first digital camera, a Canon T3i. "Only" 18 Mpixels and if I remember correctly "only" 10 bits per color channel. In my very first shooting session with the Canon, my results were so far superior to anything that I ever got with film that I immediately retired all of my film equipment and never looked back.

 

So it has become with digital audio. The equipment and the formats have gotten so good that the quality of the end product is entirely up to the talent of human being turning the knobs.

agree totally. Being that I was a consultant to Foveon, I sold all my Hasselblads, 8x10, 4x5's etc. in 1999, when I opened a digital only studio featuring a $50,000 Foveon Prism camera and Fuji Pictrography Printer ($20,000) while my wife ran the Santa Photo biz at the mall (1997-2004) with Kodak Dye sub printers for output. Film free (two 4-letter words that start with F) since 1999!!

 

Also I quit buying LP's as an early adopter of CD's when there were only Classical Titles available initially................circa 1983 when all you could get was a Sony Player since the inventors of the CD, Philllips did not have theirs out yet!!

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31 minutes ago, Chris A said:

It means that all you can hear in those added 8 bits is (perhaps) different music decays (as I alluded to above)--if the quality of the recording can reveal those differences.  99% of the recordings that I've come across can't do that.

 

Additionally, this throws into some question the notion of "HDCD" recordings--the added bits of effective bit depth are bogus--unless...

 

And let's not forget that some of the modern noise-shaped dithering schemes can push the audio-band noise floor well below what would be expected with naive 16-bit quantization. I think that it has become generally accepted that 24 bit resolution is very useful for recording and mastering because it gives extra headroom and footroom when mixing and mastering, but for the final product 16 bits is plenty.

 

http://audio.rightmark.org/lukin/dither/dither.htm (As you look at the noise spectra, understand that the vertical scale on the right end of the graphs is not dynamic range. It serves only as a reference, and the important point is the comparison between the levels in the top "No noise shaping" graph and in each of the graphs below it. So, for example, at frequencies below 14 kHz, POW-R r1 mode and UV22 both produce noise floors that are about 6 dB lower than with no noise shaping.) (Also I wish that the plots used log frequency scales.)

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Acoustical? or electrical?

Those that I’ve come across wouldn’t know the difference.

The next sentence out of their mouths is about their friend that has a [insert multiplier] 1000W system. Bigger is better, don’t ya know?

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2 hours ago, Edgar said:

 

http://audio.rightmark.org/lukin/dither/dither.htm (As you look at the noise spectra, understand that the vertical scale on the right end of the graphs is not dynamic range. It serves only as a reference, and the important point is the comparison between the levels in the top "No noise shaping" graph and in each of the graphs below it. So, for example, at frequencies below 14 kHz, POW-R r1 mode and UV22 both produce noise floors that are about 6 dB lower than with no noise shaping.) (Also I wish that the plots used log frequency scales.)

This brings up some questions:

 

1) Does anyone remember the SNR of a typical RTR tape or vinyl LP?

2) What does quantization noise sound like?

3) Has anyone here ever heard quantization noise off a CD?

 

Chris

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28 minutes ago, Chris A said:

1) Does anyone remember the SNR of a typical RTR tape or vinyl LP?

 

Really good tape machines are 70+ dB, IIRC. With vinyl it's frequency dependent because of RIAA EQ, but 60-70 dB is possible under ideal conditions.

 

Quote

2) What does quantization noise sound like?

 

Dithered or undithered? Undithered quantization noise sounds a little like the robot sound effects on science fiction movies. Dithered quantization noise sounds like hiss, with no tones.

 

Quote

3) Has anyone here ever heard quantization noise off a CD?

 

Yeah, but I was experimenting with noise-shaping algorithms at the time. On commerical CDs, if I hear the noise floor it's from the analog tape master.

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Having 24 bits is most useful in multitrack studios where mixing a bunch of channels together raises the mixdown track's noise floor. 16 bits is more than sufficient for home use, if the mastering is carefully done.

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I once read a story about how "analog was better than digital" from some guy that was talking about mixing tracks.  I was puzzled by this claim, until I read how many tracks he was mixing: over 100 tracks at once. 😬           I wonder if the concept of "high fidelity" actually means anything after that operation.

 

I don't have a lot of use for multi-tracked recording techniques, just in case you might have wondered. I understand limited use of these techniques, but nothing like what we see today from popular music recordings.

 

Chris

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I have some multitrack downloads I use to practice mixing. The highest I have tried are a little over 30 tracks. It gets difficult. Lots of fun, though. On one, I pulled out about six tracks, as I thought they just muddied it up.

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So I received Dr. Waldreps book and Blu Ray. It's a hefty hunk. Since I was really into audio when I was younger and then fell away from all the technical details through the years as life happened, I am hoping this book will help catch me up. The Blu Ray with different format outputs of the same recordings should prove interesting also. I'll see what these old ears can hear.

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I look forward to hearing what you think about the book and Blue-Ray once you've been through it all. I almost ordered the book and disk, but it's a bit expensive to get it to South Africa and our terrible exchange rate just kills it entirely for me... 😞

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19 minutes ago, inMotionGraphics said:

I look forward to hearing what you think about the book and Blue-Ray once you've been through it all. I almost ordered the book and disk, but it's a bit expensive to get it to South Africa and our terrible exchange rate just kills it entirely for me... 😞

You can buy a PDF and download the audio files.

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32 minutes ago, codewritinfool said:

You can buy a PDF and download the audio files.

 

I did consider that, but I know myself, I'll never get around to reading a PDF, as I have so many e-Books on my computer that I've never opened... 🙂

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1 hour ago, inMotionGraphics said:

 

I did consider that, but I know myself, I'll never get around to reading a PDF, as I have so many e-Books on my computer that I've never opened... 🙂

Well, if it helps at all, the book is fantastic.  If shipping is a problem, you have a solution.  

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On 7/6/2020 at 4:08 PM, Edgar said:

 

For so many years I shot film, mostly B&W, Panatomic X at ASA 25, developed my own film and printed myself.

That was one of my favorite films for shooting 35mm where lighting was adequate.  Then I got a 6x6 camera and found I could get similar resolution with higher speed film (of course it is hard to shoot action with a Yashica Mat).  Then again, I shot sports, mainly football, for three local newspapers when I was in HS.  With the reproduction quality of a newspaper, I could shoot Tri-X and push to ASA 1600 with great results.  Kind of analogous to crappy sound reproduction gear not benefiting from Hi-Res audio.

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On 7/6/2020 at 2:22 PM, Chris A said:

However, if you look at the difference in adding bits to the music decays using much less than 96 dB of actual dynamic range playback levels in-room (in effect--inserting more bits per dB quanta of reproduced loudness), then you might recognize the effect of adding bit depth in the recordings, something that I've detected myself, but the recordings have got to be absolutely outstanding.

 

That's in fact what I hear--a more "solid" decay of transients on the best recordings--going from 16 bits to 24 bits--but it's difficult to say when you've got it and when you don't (i.e., being able to detect added bit depth in A-B fashion).

I've been comparing tracks in 16/44.1 vs 24/96, and in the majority of tracks I could hear no difference. But in the few tracks where perceived a difference, I would describe it similar to how Chris A described it; they sounded more "breathy", or like the decay of sounds was lasting longer. I was wondering if it was remastering I was hearing and not the change in resolution. 

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On 7/16/2020 at 4:20 AM, codewritinfool said:

Well, if it helps at all, the book is fantastic.  If shipping is a problem, you have a solution.  

 

Just thought I'd let you guys know that I finally decided to bite the bullet and ordered the Music and Audio book and Blue-Ray Disk, taking advantage of his 50% off promotion he is currently running... 😉

 

I can't wait to get my hands on it and dive in... thanks for the push! 🙂

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3 hours ago, inMotionGraphics said:

 

Just thought I'd let you guys know that I finally decided to bite the bullet and ordered the Music and Audio book and Blue-Ray Disk, taking advantage of his 50% off promotion he is currently running... 😉

 

I can't wait to get my hands on it and dive in... thanks for the push! 🙂

Great, I would love to hear your thoughts about the book.

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On 7/17/2020 at 12:01 AM, MechEngVic said:

I've been comparing tracks in 16/44.1 vs 24/96, and in the majority of tracks I could hear no difference. But in the few tracks where perceived a difference, I would describe it similar to how Chris A described it; they sounded more "breathy", or like the decay of sounds was lasting longer. I was wondering if it was remastering I was hearing and not the change in resolution. 

Just curious, are you comparing tracks that are 24/96 from their creation? No upconverting? Mr Waldrep is very adamant about a files "provenance" and that one needs to be very careful what they are listening to.

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