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Remaining Considerations on DSD

TimF

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In the sci-fi book Solaris by Stanislaw Lem there is on earth an entire field of study and analysis equivalent to an entire field of science that has developed over years and years and that has a considerable archive of research and theorizing about the (possible) sentience of the surface 'ocean' on a faraway planet. Lem was making fun of the human fields of psychology/psychotherapy. I can imagine something like the Smithsonian institution being established to hold the archive of the field of digital encoding of which the DSD/PCM quagmire occupies the three basement levels stocked to the gills. We get caught up in thought labyrinths just as we can get caught up in institution labyrinths. ...caught up to our gills in a discussion and analysis about a object of concern that has the least actual consequence to us. What a safe place to conduct a war and to occupy the mind. Indeed.
 

Head_Unit

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sentience of the surface 'ocean' on a faraway planet.
Stories like that are so interesting. When people ask me about alien life, I tell them that due to the insanely and literally mind-boggling number of stars, even if an insanely tiny % harbor life, there must be life elsewhere. No question about it. The big BUT is that they will probably be too far away to ever communicate with, and may exist in our past or future. And also that (like the Horta in Star Trek or the sentient ocean) they may be too different for us to recognize. Then I point out we can't even communicate with other intelligent life right here on Earth-whales and elephants and dolphins and such. After I further point out it would take the fastest man-made object ever built something like 10k* years to get to the nearest star, everyone is deflated and the conversation moves on...
*sorry I'm too lazy right now to look up the exact calculation
 

Head_Unit

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Another hypothesis here. The more realistic the recorded sound is, the more uncomfortable we feel the discrepancy with the real sound. It's just like how we feel uncomfortable when we see realistic wax figures or realistic CG.
That is a really interesting hypothesis! Like how hyper-photorealistic painting can be bothersome, and yet billions love Impressionist art...which really seems to represent what was viewed (well Van Gogh in particular) even while not looking like the actual scene. In this long thread did anyone yet note that the reason some prefer DSD is embedded subliminal control messages in the ultrasonic noise? For instance "Buy Sony Stock"; "Akio Morita For Prime Minister"; "PCM sucks!"
 

Blumlein 88

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That is a really interesting hypothesis! Like how hyper-photorealistic painting can be bothersome, and yet billions love Impressionist art...which really seems to represent what was viewed (well Van Gogh in particular) even while not looking like the actual scene. In this long thread did anyone yet note that the reason some prefer DSD is embedded subliminal control messages in the ultrasonic noise? For instance "Buy Sony Stock"; "Akio Morita For Prime Minister"; "PCM sucks!"
Yeah, everybody knows about the subliminal message.

OTOH, no I don't believe we've reached enough realism to be in the uncanny valley. Partly because 99% of recordings are a thing unto themselves intentionally divorced from documentary realism.
 
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TimF

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Stories like that are so interesting. When people ask me about alien life, I tell them that due to the insanely and literally mind-boggling number of stars, even if an insanely tiny % harbor life, there must be life elsewhere. No question about it. The big BUT is that they will probably be too far away to ever communicate with, and may exist in our past or future. And also that (like the Horta in Star Trek or the sentient ocean) they may be too different for us to recognize. Then I point out we can't even communicate with other intelligent life right here on Earth-whales and elephants and dolphins and such. After I further point out it would take the fastest man-made object ever built something like 10k* years to get to the nearest star, everyone is deflated and the conversation moves on...
*sorry I'm too lazy right now to look up the exact calculation.
Life may arise here and there throughout the universe in settings that allow it. The required conditions are very rare, and so it will occur sporadically and rarely; and those conditions will last only so long and it will fade out. A planet may hold life for 100,000 years or 100 million years but it eventually fails as conditions change in that solar system. The problem in interacting in any way with life outside our system is that the statistical odds of them and us (our time of life on earth and their time of life on their planet) occurring in anywhere roughly the same time is statistically near impossible. And then, of course, the problem with the the time it takes for signals to cross vast stretches of space, presuming that they are alive when we received their message, or will be alive when they receive our message, and vice versa. I don't think contact will ever be possible simply because of cross contamination. The era of man on earth may seem to us long but we have been modern man only about 10,000 to 40,000 years, and we may survive as such a for a while, maybe a few hundred thousand years more. In "our" time it just isn't likely that simultaneously life will be going strong somewhere else. Oh sure, life will likely arise other places. But the time scales are so vast for the hit and miss development of life here and there that being able to share anywhere near a similar time frame of existence is most unlikely. The statistical problem isn't distance so much as events spread out in cosmic time.
 
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Head_Unit

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Since converters are all multibit, converting to 1 bit is an unnecessary degradation.
Huh? Many D/A, and the A/D, were/are single bit. My understanding of DSD was it was decided to take the 2.8 MHz stream off the A/D Sony was using and just archive it. Or maybe that's a mythology. Certainly the graphic they used to represent DSD (1-bit at the A/D carried through to the D/A) was pretty much lying bulls!t since anything edited in any way was not left "pure" like that, plus most titles were re-scraped off ancient analog tape and therefore limited in performance in the first place!
 

Head_Unit

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Since converters are all multibit, converting to 1 bit is an unnecessary degradation.
Oh wait, maybe by "multibit" you don't mean like 16 or 20 or 24? You mean because by now most converters are actually hybrid, with a few bits "hiding" insde?
 

dadregga

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You don't buy formats, you buy masterings. Recognize this, and seek out the masterings you like. Ignore formats, unless you're just fond of them as tchotchkes/aesthetic objects, in which case go with God.

To me, that statement more or less describes why all the "vinyl vs CD"/"CD vs SACD"/"44.1/16 vs 192/24"/"DSD vs PCM" arguments/threads are invariably a waste of time.
 

mocenigo

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Ok. Right. But an audiophile ins't going to buy a Bluray. I mean, if you go to s store and ask for music, they show you CDs and SACDs, not Blurays.

Yeah, but audiophiles do not care about sound quality. They care about perceived sound quality.
 

mocenigo

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https://help.nativedsd.com/en/articles/3072297-dsd-512-but-how-is-it-created-and-why

They offer DSD512, but cannot record in DSD512. So they "re-modulate" to the higher DSD rate from the original recording stream. :facepalm:

And many/most of the sources have been processed as DXD, but they find the purest way to playback DSD material is as re-modulated results of things that have been DXD (PCM) at some point. :facepalm::facepalm:

Well, no surprise. Now I will show you something truly horrible. It is not the first case I found, but the first I decided to keep as an example.

Attached you can see the spectrum of a 24-192 file, which is of course sold at a higher price than the rebook, 24-48, 24-96 variants.

What you see is two images of the actual audio content, clearly restricted to 24Khz Nyquist, one quite strong "appended" to the 48Khz rate and one, very dim, above it. This means that the audio was actually recorded at 48Khz and the upsampling was done in a very crude way (hint: it is actually a "sample and hold" upsampling - copy each sample four times).
 

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mocenigo

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Maybe they consider good what sounds good to them, not what measures good. It can happen to everyone...

Which is fine, but they claim that their consensus is proof of actual absolute sound quality.
 

dadregga

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One thing I like about 2L - they release Bluray+CD+SACD combos with stereo, multichannel, etc - and then on the data portion of the Bluray they just drop the raw, un-fiddled-with DXD files that everything else was downsampled and mastered from.

I can't tell any difference because I have human ears, but I appreciate that from a "listen this is the least-meddled-with digital version we can give you on a physical disc, godspeed" angle.
 

dshreter

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I remember becoming interested in hifi and I remember how impressive that the Sony SCD-1 seemed at the time. I don’t even own a single CD or SACD, but I would still like to have an SCD-1 in my life.

Products like that are exciting and I suspect made an impression on a lot of the people still buying SACDs today. There’s an understandable nostalgia for an era when the great products looked and felt great.

Now, technical supremacy can be found with a chain consisting of a raspberry pi, apple dongle, and a humble class D amp. Which is also great progress that high quality sound can be found for so little - just different.
 
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Daverich4

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Maybe they consider good what sounds good to them, not what measures good. It can happen to everyone...
I’m not quite sure how to interpret this. I might purchase something based on how it measures but whether it sounds good to me is more important than any measurement. If it didn’t sound good how would I enjoy listening to the music it reproduced?
 

xaviescacs

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I’m not quite sure how to interpret this. I might purchase something based on how it measures but whether it sounds good to me is more important than any measurement. If it didn’t sound good how would I enjoy listening to the music it reproduced?
I prefer to choose something that measures good and get used to it, as a way of educating my ear. That something sounds good to me doesn't mean anything, and besides, my taste can change at any moment. I prefer to be sure that what I'm listening is more or less reliable, even though at first glance I don't like it. In the end, it's a matter of expectations.
 

Daverich4

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I prefer to choose something that measures good and get used to it, as a way of educating my ear. That something sounds good to me doesn't mean anything, and besides, my taste can change at any moment. I prefer to be sure that what I'm listening is more or less reliable, even though at first glance I don't like it. In the end, it's a matter of expectations.
That actually was the impression I got from your post. I think you and I are after different things when listening to music on our systems.
 
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