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Why 24bit/48kHz/96kHz/, If 16bit/44.1kHz is good enough?
William
post Dec 29 2005, 13:45
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Yes, I have searched the forum.
Yes, maybe I am dumb.

But it seems I cannot find the answer.

Why do we need 24bit/48kHz/96kHz/192kHz if 16bit/44.1kHz is good enough? Are there any situations that 16bit/44.1kHz simply cannot satisfy? In other words, is there any real need for the higher bit depth and sampling rate?

Thanks for answering.

This post has been edited by William: Dec 29 2005, 13:47
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harlekeyn
post Mar 19 2006, 06:58
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16bit means 2^16 = 65536 possible values
for each 1/(44.1*10^3) portion of a second.

24bit would hence be 2^24=16.7 million values.

That is 2^(24-16) = 2^8 = 256 as many.

The misunderstanding people make is that one would
not really be able to hear the difference.
The curve is round enough. We are just humans.

But here is what they forget:

=== An example: ===
When you listen to a live recording,
the band plays at normal volume, with their
peaks till the full range of these (when recorded
in 16bit) 65536 values.

But the band does not always play loudly.
And even while they do, there are also sounds
that are not so loud. The drummer might
hit his ride gently.

Those rides have an interesting colorful sound.
A good drummer would be able to guess the brand
of the rides, with his eyes closed.
And also estimate what type of drum stick is used.

Since these rides are but played softly,
their range lies not in the full 65536 values,
but, say, only from +6% to -6%.

If one would be able to mute all loud instruments
(for this explanatory example), we would only
hear the rides in 3932 'blocks', or approximately 12bit.

If you now would turn up your volume
(of the headphones you use to listen to all this),
you would not hear an elegant ride sound at all.

So, in summery, a 24bit recording sounds nicer
than a 16bit recording because you can hear the
soft and gentle sounds better.

Someone in audience using a teaspoon and cup to
add some unasked percussion.
We can hear the stage has a wooden floor because
the horn player taps his foot.

Tristan

PS. I have not read all posts in this thread,
so forgive me if I am repeating something
already mentioned.

PPS. I am just an amateur too.
I could be mistaken in my details,
but I think the essence is correct.

This post has been edited by harlekeyn: Mar 19 2006, 22:21
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Pio2001
post Mar 19 2006, 22:07
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QUOTE (harlekeyn @ Mar 19 2006, 07:58 AM)
If you now would turn up your volume
*


If you turn up your volume loud enough, you can always hear some noise.
It would be more interesting to use some extremely dynamic samples, and play them in a silent environment at the loudest possible volume for music listening. This would simulate the "worst case" situation.

Studying the advantage of high sample rates is extremely difficult.

First, one needs "super tweeters" in order to play ultrasonic content. Few speakers are capable of playing back sounds above 20 kHz.
Then, in the last version of his paper, David Griesinger reports that intermodulation distortion at high frequencies, that can make a "counter-difference" between 44100 Hz and 96000+ Hz (96 khz sounding worse), occurs mainly in amplifiers, rather than in speakers.
Even with super tweeters, an amplifier may then produce distortion when fed with ultrasonic content.
On the other hand, there are evidences that ultrasonic intermodulation occurs in air : http://www.atcsd.com/hss.html
However, it occurs at high sound pressure. Around 130 dB, for example. Ultrasonic content in musical instrument is below 60 dB. Moreover, in order to produce audible ultrasonic intermodulation, focused sonic beams are used, while a music instrument radiates sonic energy in all directions. It seems that ultrasonic intermodulation in air should be inaudible, but I don't know about studies on this.

Scientific papers featuring blind listening tests about high definition sound are rare.
Two are published on the web :
http://jn.physiology.org/cgi/content/full/83/6/3548
http://www.nhk.or.jp/strl/publica/labnote/lab486.html

The first one shows positive results, but give absolutely no details on how the statistic confidence have been evaluated. The result is even considered as minor, since it was not the goal of the experiment, that focuses on electro-encephalograms.
The second link above is a similar experiment, that failed.

I've heard about a third one, discussed here : http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index....st&p=307155
However, the role of ultrasonic content in the success of this test is unsure : http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index....st&p=307619

But unscientific blind listening tests have sometimes showed that CD players operating at 44100 Hz 16 bits are not fully transparent :
The 24/96 challenge : http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index....showtopic=17118
Analog copies from two different CD players : http://www.homecinema-fr.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=169329500
Analog copy (44100 Hz 16 bits playback -> 48000 kHz 16 bits recording) vs resampled digital file : http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index....f=21&t=6651

All these tests deal with files undergoing digital filtering near 22 kHz, and 16 bits rounding or dithering.
One can argue that 44100 Hz and 16 bits are enough in order to acheive transparency on a decent hardware, and that the above tests use samples suffering from bad recording or processing. But I listened to the samples of the first comparison in the second link, and could not hear any difference. The guy who got 8/8 have got better ears than me.

So we can wonder if raising the resolution of the digital format could improve the sound quality in these cases. I cannot tests this hypothesis because my listening abilities are not good enough to make the difference between two CD players.

This post has been edited by Pio2001: Aug 8 2010, 20:01
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crimsontide
post Mar 20 2006, 11:03
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Well I agree with what Tristan said – For example on an old Led Zep, or to pick a rarer example Fleetwood Mac – Analogue Mix from 30 years ago, the dynamics were used in a more classical style.

Of course since many people listen in the car these days, or via the radio – most producers compress the music so this hasn’t much bearing on newer recordings.

By a classical style – I mean the overall volume level is in the lower regions of the dynamic range, saving the higher volumes for really powerful moments – Which is one of the benefits you get from Vinyl as well when compared to CD (or so enthusiasts would have you know). This would result in much less accuracy in the reproduction on 16/44 than 24/96 can afford.

So I think as long as the original mixdown is used and recorded direct to 24/96 – you might be able to ABX a quieter moment of a classic Fleetwood Mac record and have reasonable results. It’s a fair comment – scientifically.

HOWEVER

I tried that ABX from above and got only fractionally above complete chance. The results weren’t even worth noting down.
So I humbly concede that in practical applications – in 2006 – The difference between 24/96 and 16/44, is scientifically negligible, even if provable.

I didn’t believe it – I didn’t want to - but I couldn’t tell the difference.

Regards

Jon


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Woodinville
post Mar 20 2006, 21:19
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QUOTE (crimsontide @ Mar 20 2006, 02:03 AM)
I tried that ABX from above and got only fractionally above complete chance. The results weren’t even worth noting down.
So I humbly concede that in practical applications – in 2006 – The difference between 24/96 and 16/44, is scientifically negligible, even if provable.

I didn’t believe it – I didn’t want to - but I couldn’t tell the difference.

Regards

Jon
*


Understood, but consider a couple of things. The atmosphere itself puts something like 6dB SPL white noise at the eardrum.

16 bits up from that is 102dB.

Now, how often do you listen to peaks above 102dB?

Note, we have not even discussed, yet, room noise, hearing loss, etc. So that explains why when it's done right, 16 bits shouldnt' be too problematic. I do expect one might be able to design a signal that, in a quiet area, caused a problem. I wonder, however, if the average good loudspeaker or headphone could actually reproduce it with anything approaching "fidelity".

Now, to 44.1 vs. 96. Something you might try is to create some "dummy" data that might distinguish on very contrived signals. I can't dismiss that outright, but I'd suggest that you try some broadband stimulii created at 96, and then the same downsampled to 44.1. The bit depth doesn't matter for this exercise.

Said stimulii ought to be something with both tonal (i.e. sinusoidal) components and peaky components (for isntance a gaussian pulse centered at 15kHz that's down to -60dB at 30kHz and DC... Or something like that. Perhaps a center frequency for which the aliasing for the 44.1 case would be obnoxious.


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Posts in this topic
- William   Why 24bit/48kHz/96kHz/   Dec 29 2005, 13:45
- - Lyx   QUOTE (William @ Dec 29 2005, 01:45 PM)Why do...   Dec 29 2005, 13:53
|- - krabapple   QUOTE (Lyx @ Dec 29 2005, 07:53 AM)QUOTE (Wil...   Jan 6 2006, 20:04
- - William   I heard someone saying that increasing the samplin...   Dec 29 2005, 14:09
|- - Garf   QUOTE (William @ Dec 29 2005, 03:09 PM)I hear...   Dec 29 2005, 14:13
|- - William   QUOTE (Garf @ Dec 29 2005, 01:13 PM)Normally,...   Dec 29 2005, 14:22
|- - Garf   QUOTE (William @ Dec 29 2005, 03:22 PM)Would ...   Dec 29 2005, 14:45
- - bizangoin   I totally agree with you all. Increasing sample ra...   Dec 29 2005, 14:32
- - William   I am sorry. Thanks.   Dec 29 2005, 14:59
- - singaiya   QUOTE (William @ Dec 29 2005, 04:45 AM)Why do...   Dec 29 2005, 18:44
|- - bug80   QUOTE (singaiya @ Dec 29 2005, 07:44 PM)I hav...   Dec 29 2005, 22:16
- - rosshmusic   I agree that it makes no difference to end users.....   Dec 29 2005, 21:32
|- - Garf   QUOTE (rosshmusic @ Dec 29 2005, 10:32 PM)I a...   Dec 29 2005, 21:46
|- - listen   I had a thread here: http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/...   Dec 29 2005, 22:24
|- - rosshmusic   QUOTE (Garf @ Dec 29 2005, 04:46 PM)QUOTE (ro...   Dec 29 2005, 22:55
||- - Garf   QUOTE (rosshmusic @ Dec 29 2005, 11:55 PM)htt...   Dec 29 2005, 23:58
||- - rosshmusic   QUOTE (Garf @ Dec 29 2005, 06:58 PM)QUOTE (ro...   Dec 30 2005, 02:59
||- - bug80   QUOTE (rosshmusic @ Dec 30 2005, 03:59 AM)whe...   Dec 30 2005, 13:54
|- - krabapple   QUOTE (Garf @ Dec 29 2005, 03:46 PM)QUOTE (ro...   Jan 6 2006, 20:10
- - Tool462   ok, i'm a newb so don't give me some slack...   Dec 29 2005, 22:50
|- - Garf   QUOTE (Tool462 @ Dec 29 2005, 11:50 PM)ok, i...   Dec 30 2005, 00:01
- - Revliskciuq   I have to step out and disagree that there is no a...   Dec 30 2005, 03:11
|- - Garf   QUOTE (Revliskciuq @ Dec 30 2005, 04:11 AM)I ...   Dec 30 2005, 13:59
||- - jmvalin   QUOTE (Garf @ Dec 30 2005, 09:59 PM)Practise ...   Dec 31 2005, 16:22
||- - Garf   QUOTE (jmvalin @ Dec 31 2005, 05:22 PM)Actual...   Dec 31 2005, 16:31
||- - WmAx   QUOTE (jmvalin @ Dec 31 2005, 11:22 AM)but I...   Dec 31 2005, 16:33
||- - Shade[ST]   QUOTE (WmAx @ Dec 31 2005, 09:33 AM)Just to p...   Dec 31 2005, 19:25
||- - WmAx   QUOTE (Shade[ST),Dec 31 2005, 02:25 PM]QUOTE ...   Dec 31 2005, 20:52
||- - enry2k   First: What about ensuring extremely controlled li...   Jan 6 2006, 01:08
||- - Pio2001   QUOTE (William @ Dec 30 2005, 05:03 AM)And wh...   Jan 6 2006, 06:48
||- - krabapple   QUOTE (enry2k @ Jan 5 2006, 07:08 PM)First: W...   Jan 6 2006, 20:27
||- - enry2k   Thank you for quoting the thread, it is really i...   Jan 8 2006, 20:36
|- - crimsontide   QUOTE (Revliskciuq @ Dec 29 2005, 08:11 PM)I ...   Mar 13 2006, 14:36
|- - Cyaneyes   QUOTE (crimsontide @ Mar 13 2006, 08:36 AM)I ...   Mar 13 2006, 15:55
||- - crimsontide   QUOTE (Cyaneyes @ Mar 13 2006, 08:55 AM)QUOTE...   Mar 13 2006, 16:49
|- - Societal Eclipse   QUOTE (crimsontide @ Mar 13 2006, 09:36 AM)An...   Mar 13 2006, 17:40
- - William   OK, so here are some more technical questions I fo...   Dec 30 2005, 04:03
|- - probedb   QUOTE (William @ Dec 30 2005, 04:03 AM)1) The...   Jan 5 2006, 14:28
- - boombaard   so, on a slightly different note, would the 24/96 ...   Dec 30 2005, 14:24
|- - Garf   QUOTE (boombaard @ Dec 30 2005, 03:24 PM)so, ...   Dec 30 2005, 14:25
|- - boombaard   QUOTE (Garf @ Dec 30 2005, 02:25 PM)QUOTE (bo...   Dec 30 2005, 14:37
|- - Garf   QUOTE (boombaard @ Dec 30 2005, 03:37 PM)how ...   Dec 30 2005, 15:13
||- - boombaard   QUOTE (Garf @ Dec 30 2005, 03:13 PM)QUOTE (bo...   Dec 30 2005, 15:46
||- - jussi   well, and what about the HDCD (20bit) technology? ...   Dec 30 2005, 15:52
|||- - Garf   QUOTE (jussi @ Dec 30 2005, 04:52 PM)well, an...   Dec 30 2005, 16:00
||- - Garf   QUOTE (boombaard @ Dec 30 2005, 04:46 PM)QUOT...   Dec 30 2005, 15:56
|- - Crissaegrim   Definitive answer... Artists record at as high as ...   Dec 30 2005, 17:02
|- - bug80   QUOTE (Crissaegrim @ Dec 30 2005, 06:02 PM)De...   Dec 30 2005, 17:09
- - William   Well, it sounds like these 24bits / whatever kHz a...   Dec 30 2005, 15:54
- - Wintershade   Sorry for popping in like that, but here's my ...   Dec 30 2005, 16:04
|- - bug80   QUOTE (Wintershade @ Dec 30 2005, 05:04 PM)So...   Dec 30 2005, 16:25
||- - Wintershade   QUOTE (bug80 @ Dec 30 2005, 05:25 PM)Do you h...   Jan 2 2006, 12:45
|- - krabapple   QUOTE (Wintershade @ Dec 30 2005, 10:04 AM)So...   Jan 6 2006, 20:16
- - Axon   Some DSP algorithms may benefit from a high sampli...   Dec 30 2005, 19:39
- - Lyx   Regarding clipping and samplerate: according to a ...   Dec 30 2005, 19:58
|- - bug80   QUOTE (Lyx @ Dec 30 2005, 08:58 PM)Regarding ...   Dec 31 2005, 12:23
|- - Garf   QUOTE (Lyx @ Dec 30 2005, 08:58 PM)As you kno...   Dec 31 2005, 14:26
- - Raptus   >16bit would be necessary if someone wanted to ...   Dec 30 2005, 20:07
- - NoXFeR   On a sidenote; recorders may want higher frequenci...   Dec 31 2005, 00:05
|- - bug80   QUOTE (NoXFeR @ Dec 31 2005, 01:05 AM)On a si...   Dec 31 2005, 12:16
|- - NoXFeR   QUOTE (bug80 @ Dec 31 2005, 12:16 PM)QUOTE (N...   Dec 31 2005, 15:18
|- - WmAx   QUOTE (NoXFeR @ Dec 31 2005, 10:18 AM)The poi...   Dec 31 2005, 15:29
- - Lyx   One more reason to instead simply use proper level...   Dec 31 2005, 12:33
|- - bug80   QUOTE (Lyx @ Dec 31 2005, 01:33 PM)One more r...   Dec 31 2005, 13:33
|- - Garf   QUOTE (bug80 @ Dec 31 2005, 02:33 PM)QUOTE (L...   Dec 31 2005, 14:20
|- - bug80   QUOTE (Garf @ Dec 31 2005, 03:20 PM)QUOTE (bu...   Dec 31 2005, 14:23
|- - Garf   QUOTE (bug80 @ Dec 31 2005, 03:23 PM)QUOTE (G...   Dec 31 2005, 14:31
- - kwwong   The main reason why sampling rates > 44.1Khz is...   Dec 31 2005, 14:30
|- - Garf   QUOTE (kwwong @ Dec 31 2005, 03:30 PM)The mai...   Dec 31 2005, 14:41
||- - kwwong   QUOTE (Garf @ Dec 31 2005, 07:41 AM)QUOTE (kw...   Jan 1 2006, 04:30
||- - kwwong   QUOTE (kwwong @ Dec 31 2005, 09:30 PM)QUOTE (...   Jan 1 2006, 04:39
|- - WmAx   QUOTE (kwwong @ Dec 31 2005, 09:30 AM)As for ...   Dec 31 2005, 15:39
- - Garf   Another thing to consider is that with proper dith...   Dec 31 2005, 14:51
|- - marcan   QUOTE (Garf @ Dec 31 2005, 05:51 AM)Another t...   Jan 5 2006, 15:57
|- - enry2k   QUOTE (marcan @ Jan 5 2006, 06:57 AM)QUOTE (G...   Jan 8 2006, 21:28
|- - Garf   QUOTE (marcan @ Jan 5 2006, 04:57 PM)QUOTE (G...   Jan 10 2006, 12:33
- - Garf   I think what he's trying to say is this: If y...   Dec 31 2005, 15:31
- - Lyx   I think he means playing 192khz sample at 44khz WI...   Dec 31 2005, 15:31
- - ivalladt   QUOTE (Garf @ Dec 29 2005, 03:13 PM)The quest...   Dec 31 2005, 19:13
- - dekkersj   QUOTE (Garf @ Dec 31 2005, 02:51 PM)Another t...   Jan 2 2006, 15:41
- - Qjimbo   Ok, back to the original question of the thread. T...   Jan 9 2006, 00:20
|- - Lyx   QUOTE (Qjimbo @ Jan 9 2006, 12:20 AM)Firstly ...   Jan 9 2006, 16:17
|- - marcan   QUOTE (Lyx @ Jan 9 2006, 07:17 AM)QUOTE (Qjim...   Jan 9 2006, 17:59
|- - Woodinville   QUOTE (Lyx @ Jan 9 2006, 07:17 AM)This thread...   Jan 10 2006, 00:38
|- - Garf   QUOTE (Woodinville @ Jan 10 2006, 01:38 AM)We...   Jan 10 2006, 12:42
|- - Woodinville   QUOTE (Garf @ Jan 10 2006, 03:42 AM)QUOTE (Wo...   Jan 10 2006, 23:41
- - CSMR   Somehow this question brings out all the know-alls...   Jan 9 2006, 01:52
- - AndyH-ha   The Sampling Theorem says that signals containing ...   Jan 9 2006, 08:28
|- - bug80   QUOTE (AndyH-ha @ Jan 9 2006, 09:28 AM)T...   Jan 9 2006, 10:19
|- - Woodinville   QUOTE (AndyH-ha @ Jan 8 2006, 11:28 PM)T...   Jan 10 2006, 00:41
- - AndyH-ha   My immediately available source is Principles of D...   Jan 9 2006, 18:02
|- - SebastianG   QUOTE (AndyH-ha @ Jan 9 2006, 06:02 PM)o...   Jan 9 2006, 18:30
- - stephanV   @crimsontide: You can never prove a negative. The...   Mar 13 2006, 17:49
|- - crimsontide   QUOTE (stephanV @ Mar 13 2006, 10:49 AM)@crim...   Mar 13 2006, 18:32
- - harlekeyn   16bit means 2^16 = 65536 possible values for each ...   Mar 19 2006, 06:58
|- - Pio2001   QUOTE (harlekeyn @ Mar 19 2006, 07:58 AM)If y...   Mar 19 2006, 22:07
|- - crimsontide   Well I agree with what Tristan said – For example ...   Mar 20 2006, 11:03
|- - Woodinville   QUOTE (crimsontide @ Mar 20 2006, 02:03 AM)I ...   Mar 20 2006, 21:19
- - harlekeyn   WHEN COMPARING digital audio to digital photograph...   Apr 4 2006, 16:48
- - benski   With somewhat expensive studio equipment (RME Hamm...   Apr 4 2006, 16:56
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