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96kHz 24bit flac distorted, Codec or hardware issue?
audioaficionado
post Jul 26 2009, 03:01
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I downloaded a 96kHz/24bit flac album and it plays distorted through Winamp and foobar2000

I have a (onboard sound) ADI 1988B - 8-channel HD audio codec, Supreme FX audio card on an Asus Commando under Server 2008 (Vista x64 BlackHawk driver) playing SPDIF to a Yamaha RX-V450 receiver.

96kHz/24bit .wav files play just fine.

I went in the driver configuration and player output configs to select 24bit and 96kHz settings.

Didn't seem to help.

What will fix this?


Won't play:

From:
http://www.cardas.com/music/dobler/

Duration : 6:31.408 (37575168 samples)
Sample Rate : 96000 Hz
Channels : 2
Bits Per Sample : 24
Bitrate : 3786 kbps
Codec : FLAC
Encoding : lossless
Tool : reference libFLAC 1.2.1 20070917

foobar2000 .flac -> .wav conversion

Duration : 6:31.408 (37575168 samples)
Sample Rate : 96000 Hz
Channels : 2
Bits Per Sample : 24
Bitrate : 4608 kbps
Codec : PCM
Encoding : lossless

Will play:

Nine Inch Nails - The Slip - Wave 96-24 High Res album:

Duration : 3:58.681 (22913373 samples)
Sample Rate : 96000 Hz
Channels : 2
Bits Per Sample : 24
Bitrate : 4608 kbps
Codec : PCM
Encoding : lossless

This post has been edited by audioaficionado: Jul 26 2009, 03:29
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uart
post Jul 26 2009, 04:06
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It seems like it might just be a bad file. Where did you get it from?

[edit]. Whoops ignore that, I just noticed that you already posted that info.

This post has been edited by uart: Jul 26 2009, 04:19
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audioaficionado
post Jul 26 2009, 04:18
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QUOTE (uart @ Jul 25 2009, 20:06) *
It seems like it might just be a bad file. Where did you get it from?
See my link

I also did a .wav -> .flac conversion that played fine.

Nine Inch Nails - The Slip - Wave 96-24 High Res album:

Duration : 3:58.681 (22913373 samples)
Sample Rate : 96000 Hz
Channels : 2
Bits Per Sample : 24
Bitrate : 1928 kbps
Codec : FLAC
Encoding : lossless
Tool : reference libFLAC 1.2.1 20070917

So maybe there is something wrong with those files.

Could someone else test http://www.cardas.com/music/dobler/ and see if they can get the .flac to work?

This post has been edited by audioaficionado: Jul 26 2009, 04:23
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uart
post Jul 26 2009, 04:59
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QUOTE (audioaficionado @ Jul 25 2009, 20:18) *
QUOTE (uart @ Jul 25 2009, 20:06) *
It seems like it might just be a bad file. Where did you get it from?
See my link

I also did a .wav -> .flac conversion that played fine.

Nine Inch Nails - The Slip - Wave 96-24 High Res album:

Duration : 3:58.681 (22913373 samples)
Sample Rate : 96000 Hz
Channels : 2
Bits Per Sample : 24
Bitrate : 1928 kbps
Codec : FLAC
Encoding : lossless
Tool : reference libFLAC 1.2.1 20070917

So maybe there is something wrong with those files.

Could someone else test http://www.cardas.com/music/dobler/ and see if they can get the .flac to work?


Yeah I'm just downlading a track now, but it might take a while on my slowish connection..

Anyway, while I'm waiting can you describe what the distortion sounds like.

This post has been edited by uart: Jul 26 2009, 05:12
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audioaficionado
post Jul 26 2009, 05:10
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QUOTE (uart @ Jul 25 2009, 20:59) *
Yeah I'm just downlading a track now, but it might take a while on my slowish connection..

Anyway, while I'm waiting can you describe wat the distortion sounds like.

Thanx

It sounds like the worst case distortion you can imagine.

Tons of harmonic distortion and grating noise. Like very bad signal clipping.

I'm heading off to my graveyard shift and I'll check back tomorrow morning.
Thanx again. smile.gif

This post has been edited by audioaficionado: Jul 26 2009, 05:11
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uart
post Jul 26 2009, 05:22
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Ok I just d/l'ed "Smoove_Funk_Thang" from that site and yeah it's pretty bad. I can hear the music but it's absolutely swamped with static and noise. Of course I don't know what it's supposed to sound like because I've never heard any other "version", but I'd be surprised if it was really the artists intention to have all that noise distortion present.

So yeah I'd say they are corrupt flacs. Maybe someone else here can listen and offer more insight.

This post has been edited by uart: Jul 26 2009, 05:26
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andy o
post Jul 26 2009, 14:43
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I downloaded Smoove Funk Thing too. What player did you use, uart? With foobar, that is most definitely NOT what it should sound like:

The oscilloscope is even set at 50% zoom, mind you:




The flacs play well with madflac decoder in MPC-HC though.

This post has been edited by andy o: Jul 26 2009, 14:44
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audioaficionado
post Jul 26 2009, 16:18
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Hmmm...

Those FLACs play fine in VLC player too. What's going on here?

Apparently the codecs for VLC work for those files but the codecs in foobar and winamp don't.

If I can isolate the .dll in VLC, maybe it can work in foobar.

How about this... DirectShow decoder filter for FLAC is in both Madflac decoder and VLC media player. I don't think foobar or winamp have DirectShow filtering for .flac files. So the site encoded them with DirectShow filtering in addition to libFLAC 1.2.1 20070917. That's my guess.

Who knows the real answer?

This post has been edited by audioaficionado: Jul 26 2009, 16:38
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Case
post Jul 26 2009, 17:23
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From the description it sounds like they were saved with old version of Reaper. See this.
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uart
post Jul 26 2009, 17:26
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Yeah I tried to play it in foobar2000 and it was definitely broken, like I said before loads of static noise and distortion.

This post has been edited by uart: Jul 26 2009, 17:26
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Case
post Jul 26 2009, 17:32
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Now that my download finished it is clear that it is exactly the same issue as in the thread I linked. I decoded with flac.exe the first file and re-encoded it with default settings. File size was 36 % smaller since it no longer contained garbage.
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uart
post Jul 26 2009, 17:59
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QUOTE (Case @ Jul 26 2009, 09:32) *
Now that my download finished it is clear that it is exactly the same issue as in the thread I linked. I decoded with flac.exe the first file and re-encoded it with default settings. File size was 36 % smaller since it no longer contained garbage.


Yes I just confirmed this also.

So to summarize, it seems the problem is caused by passing 32bit data to the encoder that has been incorrectly sign extended from 24bits to 32bits, effectively giving garbage in the 8 most significant bits. From what I gather from the other thread either the encoder or the decoder can be made to guard against this error but at a speed penalty and Peter has decided not to do this in foorbar.

This post has been edited by uart: Jul 26 2009, 18:00
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audioaficionado
post Jul 26 2009, 18:01
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OK I read those links but I'm still lost. The files still don't play in the latest versions of foobar or winamp. Will play in VLC player.

How would I implement the fix so they play in foobar/winamp?
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uart
post Jul 26 2009, 18:23
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QUOTE (audioaficionado @ Jul 26 2009, 10:01) *
OK I read those links but I'm still lost. The files still don't play in the latest versions of foobar or winamp. Will play in VLC player.

How would I implement the fix so they play in foobar/winamp?


I just used the latest flac command line version decode them to wav and then re-encode to flac. This worked perfectly for me, it also reduced the file size from about 83MB to about 54MB due to the removal of the garbage.
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audioaficionado
post Jul 27 2009, 01:05
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I have FLAC 1.2.1.exe in foobar2000 and I converted it to .wav and back to .flac. It still seems distorted.

Is there a better way to invoke the flac CL process?
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CoyoteSmith
post Jul 27 2009, 02:49
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the first batch of WAV / FLAC files for this album contained 3 or 4 tracks which had errors (sourced from 16bit masters), i remember someone from the NIN crew posting on the thread here on HA. it was fixed a few days later. possibly related?

This post has been edited by CoyoteSmith: Jul 27 2009, 02:50
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uart
post Jul 27 2009, 03:22
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QUOTE (CoyoteSmith @ Jul 26 2009, 18:49) *
the first batch of WAV / FLAC files for this album contained 3 or 4 tracks which had errors (sourced from 16bit masters), i remember someone from the NIN crew posting on the thread here on HA. it was fixed a few days later. possibly related?


No it's not the NIN files that he's having problems with it's the other artist he listed (apparently called "dobler effect")
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uart
post Jul 27 2009, 03:32
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QUOTE (audioaficionado @ Jul 26 2009, 17:05) *
I have FLAC 1.2.1.exe in foobar2000 and I converted it to .wav and back to .flac. It still seems distorted.

Is there a better way to invoke the flac CL process?


I'm not 100% sure so this could be wrong. But I think foobar has flac decoding built-in and that the flac CL version(1.2.1 or whatever) that you have to specify in the foobar converter is only for encoding. Now since the problem is with the decoding you're stuck as far as foobar goes (though someone smarter than me might come up with a solution).

Anyway I just bit the bullet and did it straight from a command prompt.

>flac -d Smoove_Funk_Thang_FLAC_96KHz_24bit.flac
>ren Smoove_Funk_Thang_FLAC_96KHz_24bit.flac tmp.flac
>flac Smoove_Funk_Thang_FLAC_96KHz_24bit.flac

After this you end up with three files. The original corrupt flac renamed to tmp.flac, the new fixed flac which now has the same name as the original and finally the wave file. If all went well then just delete tmp.flac and the wav files and you're done.

If I was doing more than one though then I'd either write a batch file or find some other front-end to do it.

This post has been edited by uart: Jul 27 2009, 03:38
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.halverhahn
post Jul 27 2009, 13:53
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Off topic: All files are bandlimited to 22kHz except A_Brother's_Love_(inst)_FLAC_96KHz_24bit.flac is limited to 24kHz. blink.gif What's the point of using 96kHz samplingrate? Is this a mastering error?


This post has been edited by .halverhahn: Jul 27 2009, 13:58


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audioaficionado
post Jul 27 2009, 22:28
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QUOTE (uart @ Jul 26 2009, 19:32) *
Anyway I just bit the bullet and did it straight from a command prompt.

>flac -d Smoove_Funk_Thang_FLAC_96KHz_24bit.flac
>ren Smoove_Funk_Thang_FLAC_96KHz_24bit.flac tmp.flac
>flac Smoove_Funk_Thang_FLAC_96KHz_24bit.flac

After this you end up with three files. The original corrupt flac renamed to tmp.flac, the new fixed flac which now has the same name as the original and finally the wave file. If all went well then just delete tmp.flac and the wav files and you're done.

If I was doing more than one though then I'd either write a batch file or find some other front-end to do it.
What would be a good front end that could use the latest .flac.exe for conversion purposes? Batch files (although doable) aren't my cup of tea.
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.halverhahn
post Jul 28 2009, 10:52
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Just use the FLAC installer, it will also install a frontend.

1. Convert all FLACs to WAV and move them to a new folder (if you are brave tick "Delete input files" in frontend, and skip no.4)
2. Convert all WAVs to FLAC (tick "Delete input files" in frontend)
3. Check the new FLACs
4. Delete the downloaded FLACs

enjoy your new FLACs.

This post has been edited by .halverhahn: Jul 28 2009, 10:54


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uart
post Jul 28 2009, 13:32
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QUOTE (.halverhahn @ Jul 27 2009, 05:53) *
Off topic: All files are bandlimited to 22kHz except A_Brother's_Love_(inst)_FLAC_96KHz_24bit.flac is limited to 24kHz. blink.gif What's the point of using 96kHz samplingrate? Is this a mastering error?


Yeah good point, I was thinking the same thing. I guess this is just something that we'll have to get used to for now and in the future and that is the abuse of hi-res formats. Given that the flac files were corrupt in the first place it isn't too hard to imagine that those responsible don't know much about digital music anyway.

I've found that any time users have the option of overkill hi-res formats they'll use them inappropriately. For example I know plenty of people who've bought hi resolution scanners (capable of scanning 1800 dpi for photographic negatives or slides for example) and suddenly they've filled up their hard drives 500MB+ bitmap files, usually of junk where the original is so mediocre that they could have easily stored it in a 0.1MB- jpg. People so often just don't know any better.

BTW. I just tried resampling that Smoove_Funk_Thang file to 48khz – 24bits (absolutely nothing in the spectrum was lost) and re-coding to TAK. The original download was about 85MB and the new TAK file is about 31MB. That's quite of waste of bandwidth right there.

This post has been edited by uart: Jul 28 2009, 13:35
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