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ar surround

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...I really hate audio bullshit and bollocks reviewers who have made a living out of false pretenses on their super hearing with crap like this idiot:

Best CD players 2022: CD players for every budget

lines like.....dynamic expressions, rhythmic ability, expressive punchy dynamics, powerful and articulate lows, clear elegant vocals, layered and articulate soundscape.....waffle waffle, lie...

Since I've been messing around with mixing my own multichannel stuff, I found that all of those embellishments can be achieved by tweeking the volume of various elements a dB here and a dB there. Not to mention a little more or less reverb here and there, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera...
 

par4ken

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I think that the idea that you can't tell the difference between 8-bit and 24-bit audio to be rather preposterous. I think that the point that Chucky is making is greatly overstated. I assume that his main point is that the Surround Masters processing power, bit depth and sample frequency ect. are all far in excess of what is actually required.

From my standpoint there is a huge difference between 24-bit and 16-bit audio. While you can take a high rez file and down convert to 16-bit and possibly not be able to discern the difference between them, that misses the point. Negative effects are cumulative (more than just additive). Only by using as high a resolution as possible for our recording and processing can we guarantee a great result. Years ago I did all my recording and processing in 16-bit. My Creative Sound Blaster Audigy sound card was considered state of the art (for home use anyway), my recordings sounded fine. I then went to the Maya 44, also a 16-bit card so that I could record discrete quad. Latter still the Delta 44. With the (24-bit) Delta card the quality of the recordings noticeably improved. I am now using the Digigram VX882HR and can record at sample rates up to 192000, the results are superb!

The argument that high resolution is not required causes me to drift off to a somewhat similar topic. Amplifier distortion below 1% is said to be inaudible. So then it shouldn't be necessary to design audio equipment with specs below that figure? Those high end op-amps with their distortion figures of 0.00003% must be unnecessary overkill so we should just use the venerable 741?

Likewise while I doubt that any golden eared audiophile could hear the difference between a single low quality electrolytic coupling capacitor and an ultra expensive audio grade film capacitor in the same circuit, that does not mean that there is no difference. When a number of such "bad" capacitors are present in a circuit their negative effects cumulate becoming audible.

As for water divining, I believe that it does work. As a child our original water well was dug in a low spot on the property and it regularly went dry. My father wanted to have another well dug. It was suggested that he have someone dowse it first, which he did. The resulting location was near the top of a hill and it has produced an abundance of cool clear water ever since. Some individuals can even dowse for buried electrical cables. Even Albert Einstein believed that dowsing could work! Curious questions: Does water divining actually work? (N.B. Einstein thought it probably did...) - Country Life
 

chucky3042

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I think that the idea that you can't tell the difference between 8-bit and 24-bit audio to be rather preposterous. I think that the point that Chucky is making is greatly overstated. I assume that his main point is that the Surround Masters processing power, bit depth and sample frequency ect. are all far in excess of what is actually required.

From my standpoint there is a huge difference between 24-bit and 16-bit audio. While you can take a high rez file and down convert to 16-bit and possibly not be able to discern the difference between them, that misses the point. Negative effects are cumulative (more than just additive). Only by using as high a resolution as possible for our recording and processing can we guarantee a great result. Years ago I did all my recording and processing in 16-bit. My Creative Sound Blaster Audigy sound card was considered state of the art (for home use anyway), my recordings sounded fine. I then went to the Maya 44, also a 16-bit card so that I could record discrete quad. Latter still the Delta 44. With the (24-bit) Delta card the quality of the recordings noticeably improved. I am now using the Digigram VX882HR and can record at sample rates up to 192000, the results are superb!

The argument that high resolution is not required causes me to drift off to a somewhat similar topic. Amplifier distortion below 1% is said to be inaudible. So then it shouldn't be necessary to design audio equipment with specs below that figure? Those high end op-amps with their distortion figures of 0.00003% must be unnecessary overkill so we should just use the venerable 741?

Likewise while I doubt that any golden eared audiophile could hear the difference between a single low quality electrolytic coupling capacitor and an ultra expensive audio grade film capacitor in the same circuit, that does not mean that there is no difference. When a number of such "bad" capacitors are present in a circuit their negative effects cumulate becoming audible.

As for water divining, I believe that it does work. As a child our original water well was dug in a low spot on the property and it regularly went dry. My father wanted to have another well dug. It was suggested that he have someone dowse it first, which he did. The resulting location was near the top of a hill and it has produced an abundance of cool clear water ever since. Some individuals can even dowse for buried electrical cables. Even Albert Einstein believed that dowsing could work! Curious questions: Does water divining actually work? (N.B. Einstein thought it probably did...) - Country Life
Did you take the 8/16 bit test? Please do and publish the result

Not saying you cannot tell the difference, it's tough. Bitch and LV-B did and clearly could pick it.... But not always. But clearly the survey I published showed no one could pick any differences from 16 to 24 bit.... Even the ones that were totally confident did no better than random chance
 

chucky3042

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Also my point is that the areas reviewers have focused on over the years such as THD, imd, ability to hear 100db of separation are somewhat overstated. Human hearing is poor in those areas, however it's fantastic in things like distance perception, localisation. Also more emphasis need to be put on polar response and impulse decay response in speakers.

It's one of the reasons that stereo sounds way better than mono and surround sounds way better than stereo. In surround it helps the brain localize on each instrument and subtle additional detail.

Anyway, I am off to the hifi shop to get some more crystal, diamond woo interconnects
 

ar surround

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Some individuals can even dowse for buried electrical cables. Even Albert Einstein believed that dowsing could work!

Any wire or metal pipe in the ground can be located with divining rods. For my job as a surveyor while in college, we used L-shaped brass divining rods all the time. It's an easy concept: Hold the rods out in front of you and walk more or less perpendicular to the suspected metal pipe. When the rods cross, mark that spot. Do the same thing approaching the pipe from the other side. Again, mark the spot where the rods cross. The pipe will be exactly between the two marks.

The interaction of the rods, the pipe and the earth's magnetic field causes this effect. Cheap metal detector.
 

DuncanS

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Any wire or metal pipe in the ground can be located with divining rods. For my job as a surveyor while in college, we used L-shaped brass divining rods all the time. It's an easy concept: Hold the rods out in front of you and walk more or less perpendicular to the suspected metal pipe. When the rods cross, mark that spot. Do the same thing approaching the pipe from the other side. Again, mark the spot where the rods cross. The pipe will be exactly between the two marks.

The interaction of the rods, the pipe and the earth's magnetic field causes this effect. Cheap metal detector.
Many moons ago after my PhD I was working for a cable detection company. I didn't believe dowsing would work, so the head of the company said have a go it works for some people. So, using L-shaped wires in low friction bearings, I found the buried pipe which I was told was somewhere over there! We also saw the offset you saw, which we also saw with our detection kit, unless we shielded our magnetic field antennas to stop the Electrical field. I then sat down and calculated the force required to move the rods. If it was due to magnetic fields and induced currents I would have vapourised! I then calculated the electrostatic field required for the same force, and it was enough to move the rods. I can't explain why it only works with a person in the middle, it doesn't work without a human! Have a go folks!
 

par4ken

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Did you take the 8/16 bit test? Please do and publish the result

Not saying you cannot tell the difference, it's tough. Bitch and LV-B did and clearly could pick it.... But not always. But clearly the survey I published showed no one could pick any differences from 16 to 24 bit.... Even the ones that were totally confident did no better than random chance
It seems that the test is designed to prove that you can't tell the difference. How can you tell anything from that distorted noise! I did start the test but felt that this is pointless. Attempting the test I became impatient and started rushing to get it over with, as such I almost knew when I had selected the wrong answer before it displayed. I should have taken more time but I was still scoring a bit better than 50/50. It would make a difference if I was listening to my main system rather than the small Minimus speakers surrounding my computer/workbench. While simply switching back and forth between the two the 16 bit seemed a bit more dynamic, a touch more brightness in the high end. The Neil Young test might be a bit better but still with that type of music (vocal and fuzzy guitar and not his best work) you are still limited by the program material itself!

So a few points.
Program material makes a difference. Obviously garbage in garbage out. A simple recording with no dynamic range should sound the same with fewer bits. The extra bits simply aren't being used.
The CD is capable of far better sound than we have been getting from those brickwalled CDs.
Your audio system; small (crappy) speakers cannot resolve fine detail, under such circumstances low rez will not sound much different than high rez.
Attempting the test via my main system or through my electrostatic headphones should reveal very noticeable differences. Better more dynamic music should be provided for the test as well rather than stacking the deck!
 

chucky3042

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It seems that the test is designed to prove that you can't tell the difference. How can you tell anything from that distorted noise! I did start the test but felt that this is pointless. Attempting the test I became impatient and started rushing to get it over with, as such I almost knew when I had selected the wrong answer before it displayed. I should have taken more time but I was still scoring a bit better than 50/50. It would make a difference if I was listening to my main system rather than the small Minimus speakers surrounding my computer/workbench. While simply switching back and forth between the two the 16 bit seemed a bit more dynamic, a touch more brightness in the high end. The Neil Young test might be a bit better but still with that type of music (vocal and fuzzy guitar and not his best work) you are still limited by the program material itself!

So a few points.
Program material makes a difference. Obviously garbage in garbage out. A simple recording with no dynamic range should sound the same with fewer bits. The extra bits simply aren't being used.
The CD is capable of far better sound than we have been getting from those brickwalled CDs.
Your audio system; small (crappy) speakers cannot resolve fine detail, under such circumstances low rez will not sound much different than high rez.
Attempting the test via my main system or through my electrostatic headphones should reveal very noticeable differences. Better more dynamic music should be provided for the test as well rather than stacking the deck!
Actually, I completely agree as it was shit loud music with no breaks. There is also a Neil Young piece to try (but I did no better). I am personally sure if I tried it on a simple piece of music with a good dynamic range on electrostatics with surround on that I would get a positive result (closer to Bitches who was doing it that way).

Point is however is that 8 bit will fool most people and in practice I think 12 bits will be undetectable

Hey I also have Stax headphone, but I was too lazy to set it up
 

chucky3042

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You talkin' 'bout Shaft?
1665459744002.png
 

DuncanS

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barfle

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I have a fair amount of 24/96 recordings in my collection, and, of course, they are clean and clear. but I have a fair amount of MP3s in my collection, and most of them sound just fine, too.

IMNSHO, a moderate amount of overkill is present in most of our setups. I had twp 20A circuits run to my room before I started building it. I build all my analog audio and video cables out id S-video cable with gold-plated connectors. No, I can’t hear an improvement, but I also have confidence that corrosion won’t start making noise in the foreseeable future.

That being stated, there comes a point when such overkill goes from an affectation to just being nuts. I have a few heavy-duty power cables going to my powered speakers, but I found them on surplus and IIRC, they cost $1 each for a pack of ten. I could easily spend $1,000 on a power cable (well, not exactly easily - I have finite funding), but I know it won’t make a difference ANYONE can hear.

If I were a recording engineer, I would probably use 24/96 as my baseline, because the dynamic range allows for considerable manipulation in the mix. But as far as distribution is concerned, red book CDs work perfectly well for stereo.

Oh, and many of us quadheads already accept the limitations that come with trying to put 10 pounds of stuff in a 5 pound bag. A record groove needs a lot of manipulation to hold four channels of audio, particularly given the size of vinyl molecules.

Chucky, thanks for the excellent technical article. I hope those who need it most didn’t go the TL:DR route.
 

par4ken

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It occurs to me that proponents of double blind testing usually have an agenda, which is to prove that there is no difference between A and B. Such testing while not completely invalid can still be unreliable as it relies on our "Sonic Memory".

I would propose a different test, run A and B simultaneously through separate speakers. In this case the 8-bit file through one speaker the high rez file through the other. The subject would just have to pick which speaker sounds best. As it is felt that there is no audible differance between 16-bit and 24-bit why not compare 24-bit directly to 8-bit. To create a test signal it would most likely be necessary to up sample the 8-bit file so that it can be combined with and played simultaneously with the higher resolution version. The up sampling would not alter the sound of the 8-bit sample.

Also choosing decent music that has at least some dynamic range would also be important, perhaps classical.
 

atrocity

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I would propose a different test, run A and B simultaneously through separate speakers. In this case the 8-bit file through one speaker the high rez file through the other.
Another thought: Take a good-sounding file, cut it into pieces of random lengths, downrez some of those pieces but not others, splice them all back together in the proper order, play back the joined file and try to hear where the resolution changes.

As you say, the downrezzed pieces would have to be uprezzed again, but presumably that wouldn't be an issue. The source file would also have to be normalized such that the fewer-bits version wouldn't clip. Should actually be pretty easy to do with a bit of commandline work using SoX (which has a reputation for excellent resampling).

Or maybe SoX wouldn't be the proper tool for the initial cutting since it might be important to make the cuts only on zero crossings (I don't think SoX can be configured to do that), but it would be the right tool for the resampling and re-joining.
 

ar surround

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I have a fair amount of 24/96 recordings in my collection, and, of course, they are clean and clear. but I have a fair amount of MP3s in my collection, and most of them sound just fine, too.
I have some iTunes downloads (AAC) that I prefer to the CD versions. These particular iTunes songs simply sound cleaner.
 
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