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Proper Definition of High-Resolution Music

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#1
Today's criterion that defines high resolution music is based on frequency range, bit depth and lossless format. However, these standards don't care about how the album was recorded, mixed and mastered. The problem is that we don't have objective and clear criteria to evaluate the acoustical quality of album. The attempt to deal with problems that create 'circle of confusion' should be proceeded on recordings as well as loudspeakers. In order to reflect consumer's position, someone who cares about sound quality but don't have any connection with industry have to suggest the standard. In this context, audiophile community seems to be the best place to discuss about it.

What is the essential element that a high-resolution music should have?
Is it possible to quantify the definition of high-resolution music?
 

watchnerd

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#2
Today's criterion that defines high resolution music is based on frequency range, bit depth and lossless format. However, these standards don't care about how the album was recorded, mixed and mastered. The problem is that we don't have objective and clear criteria to evaluate the acoustical quality of album. The attempt to deal with problems that create 'circle of confusion' should be proceeded on recordings as well as loudspeakers. In order to reflect consumer's position, someone who cares about sound quality but don't have any connection with industry have to suggest the standard. In this context, audiophile community seems to be the best place to discuss about it.

What is the essential element that a high-resolution music should have?
Is it possible to quantify the definition of high-resolution music?
Are you asking for a definition that accounts for the practice of upsampling standard lossless to high resolution?

If so, that already exists.

Or are you asking for something related to a "good recording"?

If so, that has nothing to do with high resolution audio, as there are great recordings from the 1960s that predate digital entirely.
 

Blumlein 88

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#3
I suppose the list of things in your link makes some sense. It is obvious they are saying for high resolution you need 88.2 or 96 khz sample rates which give you response to 40 khz. If you do that with material that didn't use 40 khz microphones or play back with speakers/phones that have 40 khz response then you'll not be getting the extended response. It isn't really crazy either as often in audio (and elsewhere) you have a margin of safety to ensure performance to the required level.

Some would argue, and could do so successfully, that in audio things are precise enough we don't need a 2x margin of safety.

The definition in your link precludes very nearly all recorded music. Old tape based recordings using microphones with 20 khz response or less. That sort of thing. Even modern all digital recordings are done in a way that not even 1% meet that criteria.

OTOH, suppose I meet all the criteria and record a Sex Pistols tribute band at high resolution? Did I gain anything useful? Is that a 'high resolution' recording? It is yes. Is it really a fantastic more live sounding result or one with really highly resolved sound? Probably not.

It has been said before, if 48/24 was 95% as good as 96/24, would it make a big difference in your enjoyment if an excellent performance was excellently recorded in one vs the other? I'd say the subjective difference to you would be marginal. And we know 48/24 is not 5% short. It might be 1% less good. Even that 1% is iffy to back up with data.

On the 24 bit end of things. Was any compression (I mean even a little bit of tasteful compression) used? Kiss your 24 bit-ness goodbye. For one thing to have an entire chain of recording gear with 120 db of dynamic range is difficult and rarely managed. So 20 bits is about it.

Heck I wished better recordings were done with 44.1 khz and 16 bits. It would be a big improvement over the norm.

The truth is high resolution is a huge gilding of the lily.
 

watchnerd

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On the 24 bit end of things. Was any compression (I mean even a little bit of tasteful compression) used? Kiss your 24 bit-ness goodbye. For one thing to have an entire chain of recording gear with 120 db of dynamic range is difficult and rarely managed. So 20 bits is about it.

Heck I wished better recordings were done with 44.1 khz and 16 bits. It would be a big improvement over the norm.

The truth is high resolution is a huge gilding of the lily.
Which is why I find the whole exercise high rez one of technological masturbation that tells me virtually nothing about the quality of the recording / mastering.
 
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#5
Which is why I find the whole exercise high rez one of technological masturbation that tells me virtually nothing about the quality of the recording / mastering.
This is what I am talking about. Then, how can we evaluate the quality of recording / mastering?
 

Wombat

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#6

Wombat

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There are various definitions of the word 'quality'.

I like the ISO 9000 definition that in simple terms states the realised product must meet specification.

Other definitions tend to be somewhat nebulous and subject to individual opinions, thus hard to universally pin down and be assessed against.
 

watchnerd

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There are various definitions of the word 'quality'.

I like the ISO 9000 definition that in simple terms states the realised product must meet specification.

Other definitions tend to be somewhat nebulous and subject to individual opinions, thus hard to universally pin down and be assessed against.
Applying ISO 9000 to recorded music would seem to be incredibly difficult.

What is the specification for recorded music?
 

Wombat

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#11
As a(past) ISO 9000-series Lead Auditor for 10 years I am knowledgeable and experienced in quality system assessment. I'd say discerning rather than passionate, in my case. ;)
 

Wombat

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#12
Applying ISO 9000 to recorded music would seem to be incredibly difficult.

What is the specification for recorded music?

The specification can be what you desire. You just need to have a repeatable, customer accepted, assessment method for the product to verify that the specification is met.
 

Blumlein 88

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The specification can be what you desire. You just need to have a repeatable, customer accepted, assessment method for the product to verify that the specification is met.
Specification for High resolution audio:
It should create orgasmic delight in listeners.

Okay, spec chosen. Job done. ISO9000 certification upcoming no doubt.
 

Wombat

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Specification for High resolution audio:
It should create orgasmic delight in listeners.

Okay, spec chosen. Job done. ISO9000 certification upcoming no doubt.
Your requirement could probably be measured. It would be interesting seeing you on a medical test rig experiencing the seminal ejaculation and brainwave chaos. :p

In a past time it might be noted if you had a cigarette, after.;)
 

Krunok

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#15
Specification for High resolution audio:
It should create orgasmic delight in listeners.

Okay, spec chosen. Job done. ISO9000 certification upcoming no doubt.
I like the definition.

Is multibit HiRes supposed to give you multi-orgasmic delights?
 
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Soniclife

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For one thing to have an entire chain of recording gear with 120 db of dynamic range is difficult and rarely managed.
Is there any evidence that anyone wants that much range in their music, I mean really wants after hearing it not think they want it.
 
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#17
This reminds me of the original DIN 45500 standard for "high fidelity", which some critics said was set so low that it was meaningless, and which was misapplied countless times by commercial audio companies.
 

Wombat

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#18
Well, with IS09000 you can set your own performance requirement. You just have to demonstrably achieve it.
 

watchnerd

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#19
Your requirement could probably be measured. It would be interesting seeing you on a medical test rig experiencing the seminal ejaculation and brainwave chaos. :p

In a past time it might be noted if you had a cigarette, after.;)
How does one separate the recording quality pleasure from genre-specific pleasure?

Justin Bieber is not going to give me an orgasm no matter how well he's recorded.
 

Blumlein 88

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How does one separate the recording quality pleasure from genre-specific pleasure?

Justin Bieber is not going to give me an orgasm no matter how well he's recorded.
Oh the scary part is with a good enough recording Bieber would do the trick.
 

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