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[POLL] Hi-res music

Hi-res music?

  • I do pay for hi-res music files and I can discern an improvement over lower rate files

    Votes: 45 16.6%
  • I don't pay for hi-res music files and I can discern an improvement over lower rate files

    Votes: 20 7.4%
  • I do pay for hi-res music files but I can't discern an improvement over lower rate files

    Votes: 88 32.5%
  • I don't pay for hi-res music files but I can't discern an improvement over lower rate files

    Votes: 105 38.7%
  • Dont think I have ever heard a hi-res music file.

    Votes: 13 4.8%

  • Total voters
    271

danadam

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Your "but"s and "and"s seem mixed up :) i.e. I'd rather say: "don't pay but can discern" and "don't pay and can't discern".
 
OP
Jimbob54

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Amazon HD is really CD quality, not hi res. Their Ultra is hi res. But you pay for Amazon HD, which includes both Amazon's HD and Ultra. So this is one that falls on both sides.

I'll say that I think I can hear the difference between lossy and the CD quality. But I don't think I can tell a difference from CD quality to Hi Res.

I voted for the top one, but not sure if this fits. Also, I have Amazon music for other reasons (i.e.: family members that want to listen on their Echos and don't care about quality), so the add-on for Amazon HD is not much.

That is similar to the Tidal model (the MQA / masters is there as part of the higher tier whether you choose to use them or not)- so I am saying you pay for it (for the purposes of this poll).
 
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Jimbob54

Jimbob54

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Your "but"s and "and"s seem mixed up :) i.e. I'd rather say: "don't pay but can discern" and "don't pay and can't discern".

As long as you understand what the options are getting at ;-)
 

ZolaIII

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I have some real hires music (little of it), didn't pay for it, can distinguish the difference when critically listening (hedaphones, short sessions on above regular volumes) and it's very small and doesn't always sound better. Did a survey or two that's how I got it in a first place.
 

Raindog123

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I do and I can... Whether the latter is really there or is a “larger number must be better” placebo effect, the jury is still out :)
 
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threni

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2. Let us also park the whole MQA debate, its lossiness or not, legitimacy of advertised benefits etc and just go with if you consume MQA that decodes to above 16/44.1 it is "Hi-res" for the purposes of this poll. So Tidal Masters go in the Hi-res category.

This will all go horribly wrong I am sure as we all love criticising polls- but, humour me.


Edit, let's go with the Wikipedia definition for "hi res". So CD is not hi-res for this poll

"High-resolution audio (High-definition audio or HD audio) is a term for audio files with greater than 44.1 kHz sample rate or higher than 16-bit audio bit depth. It commonly refers to 96 or 192 kHz sample rates. However, there also exist 44.1 kHz/24-bit, 48 kHz/24-bit and 88.2 kHz/24-bit recordings that are labeled HD Audio."

More to pick up the "criticising polls and annoy JimBob54" baton and run with it than for any rational reason I'd just like to point out that MQA CDs exist (fully Red Book compliant CDs at that) which play both regular (ish...not sure what "deblurring" is) music as you'd expect on a normal CD when inserted into a normal CD player, but which also supply high resolution audio when you're suitably equipped...
 
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Jimbob54

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More to pick up the "criticising polls and annoy JimBob54" baton and run with it than for any rational reason I'd just like to point out that MQA CDs exist (fully Red Book compliant CDs at that) which play both regular (ish...not sure what "deblurring" is) music as you'd expect on a normal CD when inserted into a normal CD player, but which also supply high resolution audio when you're suitably equipped...
Always one.... I would say, if there is that mqa Cd on the shelf as well as the plain redbook vanilla version, you are paying for that hi res for the purpose of this poll.
 

Carnatux

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I have a sublime subscription to quobuz and mostly use it for the music discounts. I find that some HR files are just mastered better than cd. Vice versa. Just trying to horde as much music as possible lol.
 

Honken

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Someone once said that 95% of a recording's quality is baked in before the music starts playing.
Indeed, that's the reason why I have *some* albums in high resolution, they are vinyl rips that sound better to me than the CD release - even after the ripping process. For example Noctourniquet by the Mars Volta, which had an awful CD release that clips.
I do and I can... Whether the latter is really there or is the added price-tag placebo effect, jury is still out :)
If so, can you really discern the difference?
 

ReaderZ

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"2. Let us also park the whole MQA debate, its lossiness or not, legitimacy of advertised benefits etc and just go with if you consume MQA that decodes to above 16/44.1 it is "Hi-res" for the purposes of this poll. So Tidal Masters go in the Hi-res category. "

The issue here being you can't pay for Tidal high-fi only without paying for the MQA BS. So I had to pick the "I pay for high res but can't tell difference" one to comply with the rule of this poll while it does not reflect my choice on high res at all.
 

Raindog123

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If so, can you really discern the difference?

Had to look-up the definition (in Google search):
Discern: perceive or recognize

....had to look-up that one too:
Perceive: become aware or conscious of (something); come to realize or understand.

...decided to stop there. :) So yes, I think I can subscribe to the "perceive" (even if not "recognize") portion of the "discern" definition.
 

Robin L

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I've got Amazon HD, but didn't really think of it as High-Rez. I've still got SACDs & DVD-A in storage. I don't really notice differences in resolution though it's easy to spot differences in mixing and mastering.
 

Nango

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Miss the option: I upsample every Flac automatically by software up to 176.2/192 kHz ...... and do/don't hear the improvement.
 

Honken

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Had to look-up the definition (in Google search):
Discern: perceive or recognize

....had to look-up that one too:
Perceive: become aware or conscious of (something); come to realize or understand.

...decided to stop there. :) So yes, I think I can subscribe to the "perceive" (even if not "recognize") portion of the "discern" definition.
Sorry for my archaic language (Is it? I'm not a native speaker), but it is used in the the poll.

What I meant was - if you are unsure if it is placebo or not, have you tried to abx downsampled, high res audio to its original? If not, how did you establish that you hear a difference to begin with?

I'm not trying to be facetious here, I'm merely curious about your reasoning.
 
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Atanasi

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it is converted to analog, at which time it becomes null/null or /∞, depending on how you want to define a comparison of analog to digital.
The corresponding bit depth and sample rate of analog signal are based on the bandwidth and SNR. For example, if the bandwidth is 50 kHz and SNR 120 dB, the analog signal corresponds to 100 kHz sample rate and about 20 bits of depth.
 

Bullwinkle J Moose

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Redbook 16/44.1 is lossless when compared to 24/96 if the 24/96 file began life as a 16/44.1 file

It is no longer "Lossless" when converting from 16/44 to 96 or 192
It is also no longer "Lossless" when converting from 192 to 44.1

Padding a 16 bit file to 24 or 32 bits will give you higher resolution when using a digital volume control as you no longer drop bits at lower levels

If you really want High Resolution/Lossless playback, you should remain in the studio and play back on the same equipment used to record the tracks and play @ the same settings used to record them using the exact same clock to prevent timing errors

In general, converting a file from 44 to 96 will not sound as good as converting a file from 44 to 88, or from 88 to 44 as long as it always remained an exact multiple of 44

If you do not hear a difference when converting, then it likely underwent a previous conversion to a non-exact multiple
 

mansr

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In general, converting a file from 44 to 96 will not sound as good as converting a file from 44 to 88, or from 88 to 44 as long as it always remained an exact multiple of 44
That is simply not true. Non-integer ratio resampling is a little more complicated, but the result is no less accurate than with an integer ratio. If you believe otherwise, you'd better steer clear of any ESS based devices.
 

Raindog123

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What I meant was - if you are unsure if it is placebo or not, have you tried to abx downsampled, high res audio to its original? If not, how did you establish that you hear a difference to begin with?

No, I have not tried it (ABX'ing or down-sampling). To answer your question - of being unsure - this is simply a thing that (a) does not bother me and (b) is low on my TODO list. I guess I am a not very devoted audiophile, after all. :) Would there be three Qobuz tiers: 320 MP3, 16/44 CD, and 24/96/192 HiRes - all priced differently - then I would probably try to figure out whether I should pay the CD vs HiRes difference. But as these last two are combined in Qobuz, I am content: Occasionally play with trying one version or the other, but as everyone seems to agree, the difference is more in the source masters...

I'm not trying to be facetious here, I'm merely curious about your reasoning

None taken. (And I googled "discern" to verify my own understanding of the word.) As for "my reasoning" - I was not trying to reason at all, was merely trying to most accurately answer @Jimbob54's (and your) questions. Not sure whether succeeded. :)
 
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devopsprodude

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For the sake of this poll, let us define a few things:

1. "paying for" - if you subscribe to Tidal, Amazon HD, Qobuz lets assume one way or another you are "paying" for hi res files. Even if, like Tidal, the MQA bit comes as part of the lossless tier.

2. Let us also park the whole MQA debate, its lossiness or not, legitimacy of advertised benefits etc and just go with if you consume MQA that decodes to above 16/44.1 it is "Hi-res" for the purposes of this poll. So Tidal Masters go in the Hi-res category.

This will all go horribly wrong I am sure as we all love criticising polls- but, humour me.


Edit, let's go with the Wikipedia definition for "hi res". So CD is not hi-res for this poll

"High-resolution audio (High-definition audio or HD audio) is a term for audio files with greater than 44.1 kHz sample rate or higher than 16-bit audio bit depth. It commonly refers to 96 or 192 kHz sample rates. However, there also exist 44.1 kHz/24-bit, 48 kHz/24-bit and 88.2 kHz/24-bit recordings that are labeled HD Audio."
I took this to mean hi-res vs the highest audio quality that Spotify provides. I can't hear a difference between the two.
 
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