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Inside High-res Music: Live from Minster from The Lake Poets

amirm

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#1
Another video uploaded from my personal channel to ASR one in the series to analyze how well the capabilities of high-resolution audio format is used by content producers:
 

Ismapics

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#2
So do we really need sampling rates higher than Gracenote 44.1K / 48K? I can't hear past 15.5K on a good day. So do we really need anything past. If you are 16 years old maybe. Lossless CD Rip is ok with me.

As for the industry, remember they want to sell you the same music as many times as possible. There are records - any classic record from the late 60's or 70's, Fleetwood Mac, Stones, Beatles, Boston, The Who - that have been sold, in Vinyl LP, Masters Vinyl LP, 8 track, Cassette, CD, MP3 Download, Flac and now again in Vinyl. Same music. So no wonder they want you to subscribe to a Hi-Res Service at the tune of $155 and more per year. Swap a CD maybe cheaper.

Cheers!
 
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#3
I know the focus is on high-res, but I love seeing audio files taken apart for all their flaws. What about low frequency and subsonic noise that often lurks in tracks? Mastering of classical tracks often show very different approaches to this, with some stripping all the subsonic stuff out, and other leaving it (and a lot of low-frequency hum and noises) in.
 

dtaylo1066

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#4
Hi-Rez at this point seems to be more of a promise and illusion than a reality. Content is limited and costs more. I would say that the 24/96 music files I have listened to tend to sound very good, but I think (despite what Amir is showing with this example) that in those tunes I have listened to, more care has been put into their recording process than is typical. I have only listened to 24/96 in a limited way with more boutique kind of musicians, and not mainstream albums. Now, to be clear, many redbook files sound wonderful as well, but I find many to sound like compressed crap.

I believe that in a world where young listeners seem just fine listening to streaming, compressed music, that anything but redbook is going to survive. For those of us who aspire to a high level of musical reproduction had better hope recordings, despite technical advancement, don't get worse due to being engineered for ears that are content with MP3 or other compression.
 

Blumlein 88

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#5
Was watching with closed captioning for silence, and sometimes it came up as 96 kilowatt sampling rates. That is what is missing, high kilowatt ADC's. :)

One reason to maybe use 88 or 96 khz is to move filter effects on FR up to where it doesn't matter, and to allow noise shaping to really extend the dynamic range possible. Yet even here we aren't really pushed to cover the dynamic range available as microphones and venues limit us.
 

AndreaT

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#6
Wonderful explanations of lemon gimmicks. No buying of any “high-res” files when native recording rates are not specified. The presence of ultrasonic pure tones does pollute the source signal and through sub-harmonics downgrade the musical recording quality and presents a more distorted signal to your speakers and possibly to your ears. (if distortion means adding something not in the source, i.e. piano, violins, voice). In these circumstances paying more (and using way more space on your HD) gets you worse Music. I wonder if it is enough to spark interest for the bureaucrats of the FTC, as you pay for what you do not get as a customer, so you are duped. It is indeed a Wild West out there and your science, art and conclusions are very useful. Thank you Amir.
 

phoenixsong

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#8
I wonder if this is why "untrained" listeners (listeners who are not trained to recognise the characteristics of high-res audio) choose high quality MP3 files over high-res ones by preference in some blind test results. For myself compressed files tend to sound more focused while high-res ones can sound too airy; CDs seem to hit a sweet spot
 
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#9
Sony and Phillips really did get it right in 1980. More bandwidth and dynamic range than we ever needed. An amazing technology for music lovers, and a constant annoyance for people trying to get more money from old recordings.
Hopefully in the early 2000 we got access to more bits and higher sample rate.
More granularity is a must when you record, edit. process.
HR audio make a difference when it's record natively with the proper equipment.
From there...why not buying HR music in their original format ?
 

Ralph_Cramden

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#10
More granularity is a must when you record, edit. process.
...but of course, you don't get "more granularity" from 24 bits vs 16, or from 192K vs 44.1K during recording. You get a lower noise floor, and a higher (pointless?) frequency capture...
 
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#11
Higher frequency capture is not pointless...that allow easier filtering...ever heard of ringing due to brickwall filtering ?
24 bits allow better processing...and it's now a standard in the industry to transport digital signal.

From there the recording industry need more resolution to capture the sound of acoustic instrument and room tone.
More granularity is mandatory to edit-process...
 

PierreV

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#13
So, two analyses so far and in one case a nasty peak around 45kHz, in the other at 46.5 kHz or so... curious to see if this shows up in other pieces.

As much as I tried, I couldn't find a benefit to Hi-Res streaming and canceled my subscriptions a couple of years ago. 44.1 definitely good enough for me. The few Hi-Res downloads I tried back in 2011-2013 were obvious resampled cons.

A sad state of affairs, or rather a happy one if one considers we've had the practical/realistic best sound from digital files since the very early 1980ies
 

Tks

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#18
With mostly garbage showing above 22k, for those with EQ, does it make sense to add a -15db or so high shelf to reduce/eliminate it from your amp/speaker/headphone?
Eh depends, since -15dB I imagine wouldn't be enough to quell the audible distortion in the audible band that can occur from tweeter IMD. But it all depends on if the system itself can act on those higher frequencies, and how it's actually imparting effects. So the real answer is, it will be highly dependent per system.

I wish more of these EQ programs would stop messing around with these weak shelfs (give me something like 96dB/octave control). If I high pass at 40Hz, I ideally would hope everything under 30 is kept to less than 60dB for example. And not simply -10dB or -15dB at like 25Hz (while 30Hz is barely impacted, even though my high pass started at 40Hz).
 

Francis Vaughan

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#20
There is a fallacy in the idea:
If the recording process uses a high rez format that there is information captured that is useful in the consumer product.
The reason to use a deeper fit depth and faster sample rate is to avoid numerical nasties in the processing steps causing problems. It isn’t viable to edit and process the signal in 16 bits. You get truncation and round off errors everywhere. These cascade and you may end up with a result with much less than 16 bits of valid information and lots of distortion creating artefacts. This is true even if your ADCs are all 16 bit.
Same is true about sample rate. You can’t change the pitch or otherwise resample unless there is wiggle room in the sample rate. Also you want some room to avoid the effects of various convolutions ringing. More taps at higher sample rates for you FIR and IIR filters and so on.
The core fallacy is that the recording process ever had real human perceivable information in the higher resolution format over that that could be held in a 16/44.1 format. In the end, do the microphones, preamps, venue and instruments all exceed these bounds. The answer is that they don’t.
Properly produced and mastered audio derived from the internal high res format can and does capture everything it is possible to hear in a 16/44.1 format.
Lack of cleanliness in the production chain of the various high res formats for consumers seems to be actually delivering a result where proper care has not been taken and where, if anything, second order issues in the chain may actually result in a worse outcome. Certainly it is never any better.
 
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