IPB

Welcome Guest ( Log In | Register )

 
Reply to this topicStart new topic
I (think I) can discern highres—is it quality or just less distortion?, TOS #8: no double-blind evidence / TOS #5: split from thread 91302
zvan92
post Apr 2 2012, 19:02
Post #1





Group: Members
Posts: 1
Joined: 2-April 12
Member No.: 98325



Please excuse me in advance for my limited knowledge on digital audio... huh.gif

I've been reading all over the place about higher sampling rates create zero difference in the playback 'quality', however I can hear a very clear difference between CD-audio 16/44.1 and DVD-audio 24/48... I've also noted that I can hear a very clear difference between 24/48 and 24/96 using the same albums. A strategy I use to gauge the difference is to pick out an instrument located in the higher ranges-mostly cymbals or auxiliary percussion like shakers-that are typically dull, or possibly not audible for most people, in a low-quality digital audio file. I then change my Windows audio settings to play different qualities of digital audio at their respective playback settings (for example, PCM WAV CD rips @ 16/44.100 and digitally downloaded PCM WAV "HD" tracks @ 24/96.000) and listen through foobar2000.

During testing I often find that in audio with higher sample rates (48&96 specifically), these instruments don't cut out as soon as their lower-quality counterparts, and the overall sound captured is heard clearly with much less fatigue even without the use of an amplifier. Ride cymbals, for example, have more of a "boom" to them (as if I they have more presence across different frequencies) and reverb doesn't decay as quickly in 24/96 as it does in 24/48 using a 24/96 audio file. The number one difference I can hear between 48&96 is that the highs sound... well, higher. I don't want to focus so much on the difference between 16 bit and 24 bit though, because I imagine that the average person can hear the difference between those.

So, I've come to the conclusion that I'm definitely hearing the difference between and not simply imagining it (as most 'experts' claim). However, what I'm wondering is:

1. Are these higher sample rates actually bringing out otherwise hidden 'quality' in digital audio sources?
2. Or am I just hearing a type of loss/distortion (or some other playback effect) between audio of different sampling rates?
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
db1989
post Apr 2 2012, 19:13
Post #2





Group: Super Moderator
Posts: 5275
Joined: 23-June 06
Member No.: 32180





QUOTE (zvan92 @ Apr 2 2012, 19:02) *
So, I've come to the conclusion that I'm definitely hearing the difference between and not simply imagining it (as most 'experts' claim).
Have you come to this conclusion through double-blind testing, as mandated by #8 of Hydrogenaudio’s terms of service? If not, those whom you derisively scare-quote may as well be right. In any case, to make a claim about quality here, you must provide objective evidence.

QUOTE
I don't want to focus so much on the difference between 16 bit and 24 bit though, because I imagine that the average person can hear the difference between those.
I imagine not.
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
rick.hughes
post Apr 2 2012, 19:17
Post #3





Group: Members
Posts: 115
Joined: 16-February 07
Member No.: 40679



QUOTE (zvan92 @ Apr 2 2012, 14:02) *
Please excuse me in advance for my limited knowledge on digital audio... huh.gif

Did you even bother to read any of the thread you replied to?
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Wombat
post Apr 2 2012, 20:41
Post #4





Group: Members
Posts: 977
Joined: 7-October 01
Member No.: 235



QUOTE (zvan92 @ Apr 2 2012, 19:02) *
Please excuse me in advance for my limited knowledge on digital audio... huh.gif
...I then change my Windows audio settings to play different qualities of digital audio at their respective playback settings (for example, PCM WAV CD rips @ 16/44.100 and digitally downloaded PCM WAV "HD" tracks @ 24/96.000) and listen through foobar2000....

So you hear a difference between a CD-rip and some HiRes download of the same material but most likely completely different treated, transferred or even mastered?
This is as pointless as subjectivity can get even if you excuse first.
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
mjb2006
post Apr 3 2012, 05:42
Post #5





Group: Members
Posts: 755
Joined: 12-May 06
From: Colorado, USA
Member No.: 30694



@zvan92: I will rephrase what others are saying but will try to be more helpful instead of immediately irritated; after all, you did claim ignorance from the start. You probably should've started a new thread, but now it's up to the admins if they want to split this.

The main problem is that you seem to be operating from the assumption that the audio you're comparing comes from the same source, with the only difference being in the final digital delivery format. That's an incorrect assumption, and renders your observations moot. The answer to the 1st question is "no". You may certainly enjoy and prefer the HD versions, but you falsely attribute sonic characteristics to the HD-ness, when in fact you're listening to two differently-processed versions of the music that would sound just as different even if they were both in the same format.

What you need to compare is an HD file and a CD-quality file converted/downsampled from that same HD file. These are very hard to find in practice—most editions of a given recording have been remastered, because the people selling the music want you to hear very obvious differences, hopefully ones you perceive to be improvements. So for each edition, an engineer has tweaked it by applying noise reduction and adjusting volume, EQ, dynamic range, stereo depth, start and end points, fade-outs, etc., according to the tastes of the day, the capabilities of the ultimate format (CD, vinyl record, whatever) and the whims of the producer, artist, label, and the engineer. I believe we ascertained here that the recent Beatles remasters were an exception, so you might try those, although there was some question about the audibility of dither, IIRC.

But even if you are comparing apples to apples in a proper ABX test with matched volumes, digital audio playback is still tricky; the audio can get mangled during playback depending on various factors (e.g. Windows Vista and Windows 7 have a known issue with resampling), so one clip or the other might be adulterated in some way. Thus the answer to the 2nd question is "maybe".

http://www.soundkeeperrecordings.com/format.htm may be of some interest to you.

This post has been edited by mjb2006: Apr 3 2012, 05:46
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Andreasvb
post Apr 3 2012, 11:23
Post #6





Group: Members
Posts: 1337
Joined: 6-March 04
From: Sweden
Member No.: 12509



http://www.head-fi.org/t/415361/24bit-vs-1...e-myth-exploded

QUOTE
If we were to use the full dynamic range of 24bit and a listener had the equipment to reproduce it all, there is a fair chance, depending on age and general health, that the listener would die instantly.

QUOTE
If you play a 24bit recording and then the same recording in 16bit and notice a difference, it is either because something has been 'done' to the 16bit recording, some inappropriate processing used or you are hearing a difference because you expect a difference.


--------------------
Windows 8.1u1 Pro x64 Media Center // foobar2000 1.3.3
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post

Reply to this topicStart new topic
1 User(s) are reading this topic (1 Guests and 0 Anonymous Users)
0 Members:

 



RSS Lo-Fi Version Time is now: 23rd July 2014 - 04:28