• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required as is 20 years of participation in forums (not all true). Come here to have fun, be ready to be teased and not take online life too seriously. We now measure and review equipment for free! Click here for details.

CD vs hi-res

Everett T

Active Member
Forum Donor
Joined
Aug 2, 2020
Messages
160
Likes
100
If you leave the fringe dwellers like earthworks and go to the big end of town whose mics are used in almost every studio worldwide, Neumann, you will see that their mics are specified at 20-20kHz -- even the ones specifically for recording high notes or percussion.

There is nothing there to suggest a benefit from recording above 20 kHz. Yes, instruments produce energy above 20kHz (you can't call it music, because we can't hear it: it is just waste energy). Yes, the paper correctly notes that, "...overtones above 20kHz contribute to the sound quality, or timbre, of sound that we hear or perceive." But the president of earthworks is mistaken if he thinks that a mic that cuts off at 20kHz won't pick up all the audible contribution of those overtones and their interactions. It will. And so will a 44khz sampling rate.

cheers
Is Schoeps a fringe dweller too? No...
 

peniku8

Active Member
Joined
Dec 9, 2020
Messages
128
Likes
221
The best mastering? In my world, the ancient world where you find music lovers, the mastering is the picture that the producer want to give to the public.
There can only be one Master..
And producers deliberately degrades the sound quality between different resolutions is a ruffian: Boycott

The remastering is a betrayal.

I own and work in a recording/mixing/mastering studio and we deliver quite a bunch of different masters, depending on how the tracks will be published.
CD files will generally get a neutral master, but it will be pretty loud.
Vinyl will get a reduced stereo image in the bass region, because that might become an issue (physically, while playing back the record).
Streaming platforms are still a mystery to me. They all have different normalization algorithms, which work differently for each music genre and even song structure (a song with a fade-out will sound slightly differently than one without, for example). We tried around a lot (dozens of different masters for Spotify for example), but due to the normalization they apply, it's generally less of a punishment if you publish a record with higher dynamic range.

To comment on the og topic, I still gotta try that with the new system we now have, but I doubt I will hear a difference.
96db dynamic range and a frequency response to 20khz is plenty in my book.
I have tested myself on 320k mp3 vs hi-res in the past, and couldn't even reliably tell those apart (only 2/3 accuracy in a blind test), but that was with my relatively inexpensive home system back then. I'm interested to see if the outcome changes when I repeat this test on my (soon) new headphone rig (Topping D10->Topping L30->HE400i 2020).
 

Frgirard

Addicted to Fun and Learning
Joined
Apr 2, 2021
Messages
960
Likes
550
I own and work in a recording/mixing/mastering studio and we deliver quite a bunch of different masters, depending on how the tracks will be published.
CD files will generally get a neutral master, but it will be pretty loud.
Vinyl will get a reduced stereo image in the bass region, because that might become an issue (physically, while playing back the record).
Streaming platforms are still a mystery to me. They all have different normalization algorithms, which work differently for each music genre and even song structure (a song with a fade-out will sound slightly differently than one without, for example). We tried around a lot (dozens of different masters for Spotify for example), but due to the normalization they apply, it's generally less of a punishment if you publish a record with higher dynamic range.

To comment on the og topic, I still gotta try that with the new system we now have, but I doubt I will hear a difference.
96db dynamic range and a frequency response to 20khz is plenty in my book.
I have tested myself on 320k mp3 vs hi-res in the past, and couldn't even reliably tell those apart (only 2/3 accuracy in a blind test), but that was with my relatively inexpensive home system back then. I'm interested to see if the outcome changes when I repeat this test on my (soon) new headphone rig (Topping D10->Topping L30->HE400i 2020).

For spotify, the many advices received are: as loud as possible to avoid a degradation by standard normalisation.
 

peniku8

Active Member
Joined
Dec 9, 2020
Messages
128
Likes
221
For spotify, the many advices received are: as loud as possible to avoid a degradation by standard normalisation.
Yea, our main focus was on Spotify and the findings were basically that it doesn't matter, so we just use the regular CD master there nowadays. So much for reading papers about optimizing for certain standards...
 

levimax

Major Contributor
Joined
Dec 28, 2018
Messages
1,085
Likes
1,523
Location
San Diego
I own and work in a recording/mixing/mastering studio and we deliver quite a bunch of different masters, depending on how the tracks will be published.
CD files will generally get a neutral master, but it will be pretty loud.
Vinyl will get a reduced stereo image in the bass region, because that might become an issue (physically, while playing back the record).
Streaming platforms are still a mystery to me. They all have different normalization algorithms, which work differently for each music genre and even song structure (a song with a fade-out will sound slightly differently than one without, for example). We tried around a lot (dozens of different masters for Spotify for example), but due to the normalization they apply, it's generally less of a punishment if you publish a record with higher dynamic range.

To comment on the og topic, I still gotta try that with the new system we now have, but I doubt I will hear a difference.
96db dynamic range and a frequency response to 20khz is plenty in my book.
I have tested myself on 320k mp3 vs hi-res in the past, and couldn't even reliably tell those apart (only 2/3 accuracy in a blind test), but that was with my relatively inexpensive home system back then. I'm interested to see if the outcome changes when I repeat this test on my (soon) new headphone rig (Topping D10->Topping L30->HE400i 2020).
Sounds like the vinyl mastering would be the preferred one for Hi-Fi listening.
 

Robin L

Major Contributor
Joined
Sep 2, 2019
Messages
3,320
Likes
4,427
Location
1 mile east of Sleater Kinney Rd
Is it Little Walter on harp? The sound gives me goosebumps.
Maybe. There's not much information on John Brim. One of the YouTube videos of this song has a picture of Elmore James. I haven't seen discographic info on Ice Cream Man, first heard the song on a four CD set of highlights from Chess. Ice Cream Man was recorded in the fifties, but wasn't released until 1969. Another source claims first release was 1974. Safe to say, the track is mighty obscure. I suspect a 96kbps mp3 of this song wouldn't sound any different from Redbook, and a hi-bit transfer would be completely pointless.
 

levimax

Major Contributor
Joined
Dec 28, 2018
Messages
1,085
Likes
1,523
Location
San Diego

It is so depressing reading this, sound quality reduced to the lowest common denominator i.e. "My music needs to be as loud or louder than every one else". Recorded music is the only technology I can think of where no beneficial quality increase for the consumer has been made in the last 60 years. I have recordings from the early 1960 that sound better than most current recordings. Think about how far picture quality of televisions has improved during this time.
 

rdenney

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Dec 30, 2020
Messages
1,145
Likes
1,781
Summary:

If I'm recording music and may want to manipulate that recording with software-based processing, then I want 24/96. That gives me room to manipulate without "posterization."

For playback, 16/44 provides everything I can hear.

Everything else is theory, schmeary.

Rick "the Loudness War is being waged at all resolutions" Denney
 

Frgirard

Addicted to Fun and Learning
Joined
Apr 2, 2021
Messages
960
Likes
550
Summary:

If I'm recording music and may want to manipulate that recording with software-based processing, then I want 24/96. That gives me room to manipulate without "posterization."

For playback, 16/44 provides everything I can hear.

Everything else is theory, schmeary.

Rick "the Loudness War is being waged at all resolutions" Denney
The 24/96 Rick "enter by the windows when the door is close" Deny. Sorry.
Fabfilter have the honesty to say: the sample rate doesn't matter.

The major thread on the subject GoldenEar against GoldenMathematics

https://gearspace.com/board/music-computers/992969-88-2-96khz-vs-44-1-48khz-thread-end-them-all.html
 
Last edited:

cany89

Active Member
Joined
Dec 22, 2020
Messages
238
Likes
115
It is so depressing reading this, sound quality reduced to the lowest common denominator i.e. "My music needs to be as loud or louder than every one else". Recorded music is the only technology I can think of where no beneficial quality increase for the consumer has been made in the last 60 years. I have recordings from the early 1960 that sound better than most current recordings. Think about how far picture quality of televisions has improved during this time.

It even went worse since digital recording started to be the go-to method. (Just wild guessing but maybe around the late 90s, early 00s) (talking about majority/pop albums, not a few selected albums with masterclass engineering)

Compare early 00s nu-metal/alt-rock sound with 92 Soundgarden - Superunknown. Cheap records that sound thin and muddy vs killer wall of sound, drums, and vocals, etc. (Not gonna get into the best mastered albums of all times nerd talks, although I'm willing to for sure lol)
 

levimax

Major Contributor
Joined
Dec 28, 2018
Messages
1,085
Likes
1,523
Location
San Diego
It even went worse since digital recording started to be the go-to method. (Just wild guessing but maybe around the late 90s, early 00s) (talking about majority/pop albums, not a few selected albums with masterclass engineering)

Compare early 00s nu-metal/alt-rock sound with 92 Soundgarden - Superunknown. Cheap records that sound thin and muddy vs killer wall of sound, drums, and vocals, etc. (Not gonna get into the best mastered albums of all times nerd talks, although I'm willing to for sure lol)

A lot of popular music recorded in the early 1990's was very dynamic and sounded excellent.... even "grunge" bands like Nirvana, Meat Puppets, and the like. I actually learned about the "Loudness Wars" from Nirvana Nevermind. I had the original CD and when it came out on "Hi-Res" I bought it but didn't like the sound. I started researching and learned about compression and the loudness wars. In this case the original CD has a DR of 12 and the "Hi-Res" remaster a DR of 6 which ruined the sound quality for me. I notice Qobuz is streaming the compressed Hi-res version which means most will never even hear what the album originally sounded like which is a shame.
 
Top Bottom