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Linux VS Windows

tomas emma irace

Active member
Apr 19, 2020
6
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Amp: Yamaha RX-V595aRDS (previously Philips CW100)
Speakers: Audiowell MP 120
Cables: OFC 2.5mm / argon audio classic mjin1 minijack
Comp: 32-bit 2.2ghz, 150gb hdd, 2gb ram, linux / 64-bit 2.3ghz, 120gb ssd hdd, 4gb ram, win10

Here's a story / essay, which became very long now. Hope you bear with me. I wanted a stereo again, have been using marshall MID ANC for ½ year, the sound quality is real nice, especially in bluetooth mode. But I had stereo munchies, as I haven't had a stereo for an entire year. So I went to 3 second hand stores. The first I bought was the "mini hifi" system ($10), though, I didn't bring the speakers with me from the store. Defines the word "plastic", basically weighs nothing. Next was the speakers, nice danish ones, cost me $40. The sound processed from the $10 stereo was sweet, especially as I could increase or decrease the volume to whatever, and it always sounded good! Real fat bass, to the point of things in my room started vibrating. This made me go "hmm", thinking that the sound wasn't very realistic, but it was good for dancing to! Then a month later I bought a dedicated amp ($50), and was gravely disapointed. Basically no bass at all, but I turned the bass up to full, and it sounded ok. The sound is a bit smoother, that's all. And it only has one good listening level, too low sounds too low, too high just sounds bad - I swear I almost get a headache then. But I can plug a lot into it, when I get the time and money...

Then I finally started using my newly bought win10 laptop ($370), after some bug-cleaning, as it was crashing under just about any circumstance before - if I went away from the comp a few mins it blackscreened! I figured for several months that it was just innert to a shitty new OS, so I did nothing about it, just accepted its crashes all its crashes, only using one program at a time, and only one browser tab. I also had an old laptop, eventhough the new one, was, well, new, it still only had a 120gb hdd, while the old one had a 150gb one. And I like flac, so after a few years of music buying, the hdd fills up. But still, win7 on the old used 70gb of space, after uninstalling everything imaginable. So I figured, why not install a small linux distribution? Found Lubuntu, at only 3gb size. I recently saw a modern day portable media player for $2000, which still only had a 120gb drive built in, so I'm winning ground.

Now to the surprise, the sound quality was much better. I heard it directly, minutes from having booted the OS, from one of the supplied media players. It was very audible. I still get baffled all the time when I think of the sound going through my stereo. I had no problems before switching between different sound systems, but now I just don't want to go back to anything else. It's like several $100's worth of sound quality.

And to the ones saying "this is impossible", imagine gigabytes and gigabytes of code, and the effectiveness, like 3d rendering, in games, for example. There's huge differences there. I had no thoughts of linux improving my stereo, I only wanted the extra storage space. But with this, I'm spellbound.

To objectively measure sound quality - is it even possible? Some like commercial radio poprock, and swear by that. Or christian hiphop? To them it's the best thing in the world, no matter what others say. Some only like live recordings, some will only listen live - the true experience, if anything. I've read several analyzations of differences in sound qualities across many factors, but at the end of the day, it's up to the enduser to decide. As Albert Einstein put it, "Not all that counts can be counted, and not all that can be counted counts". How do you explain analog "warmth" in logical terms? I can in a splitsecond hear when I put on a 96khz 24-bit record. It's much crisper, much alive, more detailed bass, everything. No matter what some people say, they can go back to 128kbps mp3s encoded in 1995, for all I care...

The picture quality is also much better. I sometimes think I'm on my new laptop with its full-HD rez, while the old one is just HD. Images are crisper, and the antialiasing is incredible.

Now to the downsides. It seems they haven't realized people use multitasking, or is it only my 32-bit machine? Downloading an album in flac on bandcamp, while surfing the net, is impossible; a simple webpage takes minutes to load, and this is with a 10mb connection. And both playing music and browsing is unthinkable as well, it just buffers, over and over again, when using Clementine and Firefox together.

But, still, I got what I wanted; a dedicated media player, with twice the storage space, at no cost. And always looking for better sound quality, so linux sound processing was just icing on the cake.

To note is I searched on "linux" here, and the first post I look at, mentions better sound quality on linux vs pc! Since I'm not interesting in forum necromancy, i'll quote something.

"With power power requirements hence consumption lower electrical noise on Linux is lowered on USB bus 4) Lower power consumption could also lower interference to external components"
- https://forums.whathifi.com/threads/windows-vs-linux.109306/page-4

My sister's boyfriend has a stereo for $50000 last I heard, although that was awhile ago. I listened to it back then, and it was incredible. When I looked up the gear he uses, it's 3 large parts, not including speakers, just for playing CDs. And I didn't get anything of the specifics, but what I did understand then, is that it has a lot to do with electrical clarity, and noise? Ever listened to a live concert, before they started playing? The enhanced noise from the amplificers isn't fun to hear. And eventhough a CD is digital, it gets noise the second you get a little dent in it or some dust. I don't hear this myself from my ripped CDs, but others do. Of course, ripping back in the old days, you could hear a high dusty-like woof sound at places where it was really scratched. So there's more than meets the eye, or ears... It's all about clarity, the clearer the signal all the way through all components, the more true it is to the original.

I've dabbled a lot with HDR in photography, and most people say you only need 20 exposures or so if you're photgraphing something extreme as light coming through inside of churches, or that re-saving JPGs over and over again won't reduce the picture quality much. ********! I once processed 128 exposures into a single image, and after the 8 hours of processing the image quality was just out of this world. Something as simple as a single red colour on a wall of a building, all the time changes to be more true as you increase the dynamic range. Same goes for re-samping. When you work on an image, say it's 4132x2837, and you need to have it on a site in 800x600 pixels, if it was the same for a sound, audiogeeks would just vomit from all the aliasing artifacts. The most interesthing part is, the higher dynamic range you have, the lower filesize you get when saving as a PNG; there's less unpredictable noise, after all.

If you're a musican you know these things, but on HIFI forums they seem to be sadly lacking. Music artists, if anything, put all their knowledge, wisdom, techniques, time and hearing ability into making their next album, instead of bragging about their gear or set in stone wisdom. And the wisdom they have, they keep quiet about.

It's strange how picture quality is going up and up, but the sound a TV outputs is just pathetic. It seems the ones which are against expensive sound equipment, are the same ones collecting and looking at VHS tapes - no-one notices the difference from 0.5k to 8k, or a fatscreen compared to QLED anyway!

Since no-one in their right minds watches VHS anymore, why are we still listening to cd quality? Does anyone think 60fps looks bad? If VHS used the technology and science of the day, isn't it logical to think, that a just as old standard is also outdated?

Another comparison would be burgers. You could buy mincemeat, put in some spices, egg, cookie crumbs, make burgers out of it, and grill it outside by yourself - the equilant of a concert. Then you go to McDonalds, and... what can I say, we all know the difference, right? And the other burger chains are just the same, or marginally better or worse.

Skrev om min stereofilosofi för ett HIFI forum, kommer säkert få 1 kommentar från ett troll bara. Vet inte om Bella bryr sig, men jag höll på några timmar med att skriva det i alla fall... Så här har vi det...

Another one, soap. Some probably swear by their $1 soap they get from their local supermarket. It makes them clean, what else could you want (except the 100 additives)? Same as consumer level stereos and ms windows. Then you have those who use rubbing alcohol all over their body - the equilant of a dead, cold, electronical sound. Then there are the ones who buy those expensive, ecological, hand made, olive or hemp based soaps. It's a high amount of one ingredient, doesn't dry you out your skin and heals wounds and diseases - the equilant of recording in an analog studio. What more could you want?

Most probably swear by what they use, and would never change.

And if it works for them, why complain?

But some of us are seekers...
 

abacus

Well-known member
Sep 24, 2008
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19,070
If you do a bit more research you will find out why Win 10 (At least the earlier versions) sound worse than MAC or Linux OOTB, however it is easily fixed and unless you are using a limited performance software player that does not use the full features, later versions of the OS are fine OOTB.

That the OS kept crashing points to an incompatible software program (So you will need to uninstall it) or a hardware problem. (If this is the case you should take it back to where you bought it from)

Linux is great for music and there are many free programs that are top notch, however there are many software companies that do not support it so you get incompatibilities when transferring between the 2. (WINE only gives you limited compatibility)

Linux is also not good at IOT (Due to its security focussed system) so rules it out for most users.

If you want the best for all types of work you need MAC, Windows & Linux, as all have their upsides and downsides.

You only need 16/44.1 to hear all the sounds available, (Studios mix down to 16/48 and only mix down to 16/44.1 for CDs)) studios use 24/96 for mastering as you will always get losses when doing the various processing of the signal. (The reason 29/96 sounds better than 16/44.1 is that they are mastered differently, however if you down sample them to 16/48 they will sound exactly the same)

Bill
 

tomas emma irace

Active member
Apr 19, 2020
6
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Like I said, CD is an outdated technology. Most people don't notice if they have a VHS resolution on their screens (and don't care), even if they have a 4k tv. I don't mind about "most people" though. That's like saying 64kbps mp4 is the same as flac, since they use the same audio, or that a vinyl recorded to 96/24 sounds analog, or that a live recording is the same as the real thing. It's not. Like saying a fatscreen shows 100% of the RGB spectrum; it's more like 60%. Only now with QLEDs do we get the full spectrum. But hey, maybe most people can only see 60% of the RGB spectrum, if big corporations had lied enough about that in 80s, maybe we would still have VHS. Wouldn't surround be useless, since we have 2 ears, not 6? Why do you have a HD+ screen, isn't VGA enough for your eyes, anything else is overkill?

"studios use 24/96 for mastering"

They did that back in 1999. Now with 64-bit OSs and software, they use up to 64-bit 384khz masters. If you ever listen to a track like that, and compare it to playing off your vinyl, you'll notice they are very much alike.

Another thing to take into account, is that with cd quality, you get very little detail in the bass spectrum. Only 1/176:th of the data is in the 20-250hz region. What most vinyl listeners will profess to, is much "fatter" bass. While anything over 10khz is useless to most people (Hah, there I also go...), cd is just wasting bits.
 

chris661

Well-known member
Oct 30, 2019
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Quite a lot of misinformation above.

- Quite a lot of real studios stick around 44.1kHz/16-bit. Those that go higher might go up to 192kHz/24-bit. I haven't heard of anyone running higher than that, because it simply doesn't make sense to do so - the file sizes get huge, and there's no benefit.
- CDs can accurately describe ANY signal from 0Hz-22kHz, with an effective dynamic range of well over 100dB (once you include some frequency-shaped dither).
- Vinyl has different bass because they split it out, sum to mono and compress it (compression can often sound "fatter") before cutting to disc, to work around the limitations of the medium.

Chris
 

tomas emma irace

Active member
Apr 19, 2020
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sure, and vhs can accurately describe any signal from pitchblack to radiant white in 16.7 million colours with a 180 degree field of vision, just like IMAX! strange how they have 30 bpp screens now, huh?

filesizes for cd quality in wav are already too big for most peoples sdd's and their mobile's sad 100 megabit download limit. what's your point? don't you think a professional studio can't afford 100tb+ storage ?

you need to go over to a friend that has an lp player, bring a vinyl single of 3½ mins in 180 gram 12 inch vinyl and listen. and you and your stuck opinions will be blown away. or compare a 20 inch fatscreen showing a vhs film to streaming at 8k hdr @ 60fps on a qled. it's exactly the same thing.

"and compress it"? haha. now you shown you have no expertise or even general knowledge at all. everyone uses compressors, it's the equilant of hdr photography. there are analogue compressors going around for a hundred thousand bucks. i bet you don't use an amp (exactly the same thing as a compressor) and just plug your player directly into the speakers, and listen at the lucious 1db soundlevels.

the vinyl technique was just about perfected in 1991, but then everyone went over to the pathetic cd "quality". and yes, most old vinyl records (especially 80's synthpop) have terrible sound quality, but that's because they were massproduced and had a low gram weight. some actually only listen to 50's mono records, before they reduced sound quality / gram weight / went stereo.

corrections: (ok, i've calmed down now. i mistook resampling rates of the dac with flacs)

foobar2000 supports 25-bit 655.35 khz (it's only a 32-bit program though)

nad m51 resamples 192khz 24-bit to 35-bit/844 kHz

"Hi-Res Audio support (Android 4.4+, >= 24-bit, up to 768 kHz):"

playerpro says it supports 32 bit / 192kHz. it's only for smartphones, but had some real nice dithering modes, which sucked battery time like mad. it's also the best media player i've ever used. it crashed after a few mins though on high rez flacs, so i gave up on it, which i realize now had to do with me using level 8 compression. i thought it supported 64-bit, but that was only w64, for files above 4gb in size...

if you want to remix the track, or use your own eq or compression or voice isolation or whatever filters, the higher the original quality, the better. it's a big hassle to remix mp3's, or even cd quality flacs. today's daws computes filters at 64-bit. as a comparison, the outdated but still incredible hyperfast french hdr program (can't remember the name now) used 96-bit operations.

what about resampling then? is it for real? is there any difference at all? why do we need dacs at all?

and yes, most people dither their music to cd quality only, eventhough their original files can go way up. i barely see any 24bit versions on bandcamp. the problem is hearing all those details, if you don't have enough sound quality in your system, you'll probably add details which you don't want.

there's a reason people buy vinyl though, because they can effectively not be pirated. and digital vs analog quality isn't really possible to compare. it's 2 separate worlds. like recording off a telephone, in your ears it sounds ok, but when that analog signal is digitally converted, the sound quality is so bad it's barely discernable. i actually enjoy listening to my mom's grainy homemade cassettes from the 80's, it's grain all over the place, but i still find the original warm signal is there.

"- CDs can accurately describe ANY signal from 0Hz-22kHz, with an effective dynamic range of well over 100dB (once you include some frequency-shaped dither). "

does that mean you need to master the album while listening at 100db (who can handle that?) to make it perfect? i heard it was only 85db?

what i can easily hear on vinyl and 24-bit 192khz flacs (from my own ableton output) is that the sound is much smoother. like you can literally "hear" the gaps in the bitrate on cds. i tried looking at a fatscreen the other day, it was driving my crazy, the low framerate was just unwatchable. but still, back in the days, no-one complained about it. because we were used to it then. same with cd quality. some high quality captured 60fps videos look unreal to me, like it's fake, plastic, robotic (no lipsynch? my eyes and ears aren't synched?!). just like i thought hdr was back in the days. so some people might like that cold dead spikey sound of cds. what do i know. or i just have a shitty stereo.
 
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chris661

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Oct 30, 2019
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Okay, lets do this.

sure, and vhs can accurately describe any signal from pitchblack to radiant white in 16.7 million colours with a 180 degree field of vision, just like IMAX! strange how they have 30 bpp screens now, huh?
Straw man.

filesizes for cd quality in wav are already too big for most peoples sdd's and their mobile's sad 100 megabit download limit. what's your point? don't you think a professional studio can't afford 100tb+ storage ?
Even the high-end studios can't afford to dedicate 100tb of storage to a single project.
I'm not sure which century you're in with regards to download limits, but the norm at the moment is many gigabytes.

you need to go over to a friend that has an lp player, bring a vinyl single of 3½ mins in 180 gram 12 inch vinyl and listen. and you and your stuck opinions will be blown away. or compare a 20 inch fatscreen showing a vhs film to streaming at 8k hdr @ 60fps on a qled. it's exactly the same thing.
If you'd bothered to check, I do actually have a fairly respectable turntable - it's in my signature. A friend helped me set it up, using one of those vinyl test discs which play sine tones L/R/both, and we managed to get it so that there was no audible tracking distortion across the entire record - the friend couldn't believe we'd managed it, as his more-expensive turntable only just managed it.

"and compress it"? haha. now you shown you have no expertise or even general knowledge at all. everyone uses compressors, it's the equilant of hdr photography. there are analogue compressors going around for a hundred thousand bucks. i bet you don't use an amp (exactly the same thing as a compressor) and just plug your player directly into the speakers, and listen at the lucious 1db soundlevels.
Yes, even I use compressors. I do happen to be a professional sound engineer.
My point, which you have missed and/or avoided entirely, is that the finished mix is subject to additional compression which wouldn't be present in the CD release.

I have plenty of amplifiers, thank you very much. Current favourite is a Powersoft T604, because it has 2048 taps available for custom FIR processing, which is handy - the last time I played with it, I had a system that was flat in both phase and frequency response from 100Hz up to 20kHz. That was the most accurate sound I've ever heard. In theory, it would've put out a very good square wave, but I was too busy enjoying the music to test.

I'd also like to point out that if your amplifier is acting like a compressor, it is faulty and should be replaced. An amplifier should increase voltage linearly, and supply current as needed. Compressors alter signal levels by reducing those levels once they exceed a threshold. Entirely different. To be honest, your suggestion that they're exactly the same makes me wonder how much you actually know about this stuff.

the vinyl technique was just about perfected in 1991, but then everyone went over to the pathetic cd "quality". and yes, most old vinyl records (especially 80's synthpop) have terrible sound quality, but that's because they were massproduced and had a low gram weight. some actually only listen to 50's mono records, before they reduced sound quality / gram weight / went stereo.

corrections: (ok, i've calmed down now. i mistook resampling rates of the dac with flacs)

foobar2000 supports 25-bit 655.35 khz (it's only a 32-bit program though)

nad m51 resamples 192khz 24-bit to 35-bit/844 kHz

"Hi-Res Audio support (Android 4.4+, >= 24-bit, up to 768 kHz):"

playerpro says it supports 32 bit / 192kHz. it's only for smartphones, but had some real nice dithering modes, which sucked battery time like mad. it's also the best media player i've ever used. it crashed after a few mins though on high rez flacs, so i gave up on it, which i realize now had to do with me using level 8 compression. i thought it supported 64-bit, but that was only w64, for files above 4gb in size...
Appeals to authority. These guys are caught up in a numbers game.

if you want to remix the track, or use your own eq or compression or voice isolation or whatever filters, the higher the original quality, the better. it's a big hassle to remix mp3's, or even cd quality flacs. today's daws computes filters at 64-bit. as a comparison, the outdated but still incredible hyperfast french hdr program (can't remember the name now) used 96-bit operations.
DAWs might use higher bit depths internally for their processing. My digital mixing desk, for example, runs at 32 bit float.
A larger bit depth means you can accurately sample a wider dynamic range, which is useful in that particular application - it means you don't have to run everything at/close to the red (as you did in the tape days).

That doesn't mean, for one second, that those bitrates are useful to listeners at home.

what about resampling then? is it for real? is there any difference at all? why do we need dacs at all?
What about resampling? It probably is real, but that doesn't mean it's beneficial.
We need DACs to convert 1s and 0s to analogue waveforms that our amplifiers can amplify.

and yes, most people dither their music to cd quality only, eventhough their original files can go way up. i barely see any 24bit versions on bandcamp. the problem is hearing all those details, if you don't have enough sound quality in your system, you'll probably add details which you don't want.
That's not dithering, that's data compression. NB - different from what audio compressors do.

there's a reason people buy vinyl though, because they can effectively not be pirated. and digital vs analog quality isn't really possible to compare. it's 2 separate worlds.
People buy vinyl for the nostalgia, the physicality of the medium, and the ceremony of putting a record on to play. Some people mention sound quality. I don't think anybody mentioned piracy in the thread about the resurgence of vinyl around here.

like recording off a telephone, in your ears it sounds ok, but when that analog signal is digitally converted, the sound quality is so bad it's barely discernable. i actually enjoy listening to my mom's grainy homemade cassettes from the 80's, it's grain all over the place, but i still find the original warm signal is there.
I'd suggest you revisit your recording process for phone calls. The ones I've heard (never bothered doing it myself) were perfectly intelligible given the bandwidth limitations.

"- CDs can accurately describe ANY signal from 0Hz-22kHz, with an effective dynamic range of well over 100dB (once you include some frequency-shaped dither). "

does that mean you need to master the album while listening at 100db (who can handle that?) to make it perfect? i heard it was only 85db?
I'd suggest that you go out and remind yourself of the definition of dynamic range.

what i can easily hear on vinyl and 24-bit 192khz flacs (from my own ableton output) is that the sound is much smoother. like you can literally "hear" the gaps in the bitrate on cds. i tried looking at a fatscreen the other day, it was driving my crazy, the low framerate was just unwatchable. but still, back in the days, no-one complained about it. because we were used to it then. same with cd quality. some high quality captured 60fps videos look unreal to me, like it's fake, plastic, robotic (no lipsynch? my eyes and ears aren't synched?!). just like i thought hdr was back in the days. so some people might like that cold dead spikey sound of cds. what do i know. or i just have a shitty stereo.
Here's a good article for you to read: https://people.xiph.org/~xiphmont/demo/neil-young.html
The video linked at the top is well worth watching, probably moreso than the article.

From what you've written, you don't seem to understand how digital audio actually works. Going through that article and video won't take long, and will improve your understanding immensely.

Kind regards,
Chris
 
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tomas emma irace

Active member
Apr 19, 2020
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ok, you might be right about some things! i'm a photo nerd, and try to understand music by using my visual sense...

"I'm not sure which century you're in with regards to download limits, but the norm at the moment is many gigabytes"

memory makers use the 1000 bits per thousand calculation, while computers use base-2, meaning it's 1024 instead. might not sound like much of a difference, but if you go from kilobytes to terabytes, it's fairly noticable. if you compute with base-10 you get 931gb if you have a1tb drive (check it yourself, they're all lying). then mobile operators use bits intead of bytes, so when they write "10gb download limit", it's actually only 1.119 true gigabytes.

"I'd suggest that you go out and remind yourself of the definition of dynamic range. "

you didn't answer my question. weren't we talking about the same thing already? i've heard that, once again, 85db is where people master at, because bass, midtones and treble are accurately represented there (the research for that is how loudless came to be). eventhough hearing loss and tinnitus occurs already at 75db+. do "real pros" use 100db+? and what about those that master at higher than cd quality? it seems impossible to hear all the detail, if what you're saying is true?

that people can only hear 20-20000hz is correct, and this what cd quality reseearch was made for, the average / median person in the 80s, at the age of like 10 years old? even in the early teens there's major hearing loss. but for other people - bassists, bird enthustiats, clairvoyants, this old research is faulty. i can't tell the difference between an out of tune 100$ guitar and one that is worth several millions, the only difference is that the expensive guitar sounds more crisp, same as higher quality flacs. that's all. for people that can hear below 20hz or above 20khz, it's like another world of music. it's the fourth or even fifth dimension, the equilant of seeing infrared och ultraviolet, which i have done - i've also personally met people who can see auras, which are gamma rays, and those have a very high frequency.

i can "hear" birdsong (5khz), sure, and have synthesized it too. sounds like birdsong to me, but then again every blackbird sounds the same to me. so my synthesized version probably sound like gibberish to someone that's attune to birdsong; i can't, after all, make out what the birds are saying. it's also documented that we respond to frequences outside the cd spectrum, but for most people, we just "respond" to them, we don't hear them. we feel them, in our body - below 20hz is referred to as "brown noise" for a reason. and high frequences i do discern (including dog whistles, wifi, etc), and gives me noise in my ears, anxiety, and sleeping problems, which is why i usually have everything electronic turned off when i go to bed.

i have to mention though, that the low amount of time i've watched qleds, they're literally burned my eyes out. the frequenies are so strong, it's like staring into the sun or a lightbulb. but for some people, it evidently works.

i'm asking again, why we have dacs? if their only reason for interpolation is to introduce higher frequenies, which are damaging, inaudible, and degrades the sound quality, why are they used?
 
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chris661

Well-known member
Oct 30, 2019
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Dynamic range is the difference, measured in decibels, between the loudest and quietest part of the signal. A larger number of bits means you can deal with a larger dynamic range.

So, if you listen at 120dBSPL (really loud!) with a system capable of 110dB of dynamic range, then the quietest possible signal level is 10dBSPL - below that, it "falls into the noise" (sort-of - watch the video for things we can do about that). That's really really quiet - you won't get that in a domestic environment. IIRC, heavily treated studio control rooms with all the equipment switched off might get down to 20dB, with some noise still leaking in from the outside world.
So, the dynamic range that CDs are capable of will far exceed what's possible in a typical listening room.

To put dynamic range in visual terms, it's more like contrast ratio. CDs already make it possible to show the full contrast ratio (blackest black to the brightest white) that it's possible to perceive, unless you set up some really extreme equipment and damage yourself.
For example, if I put a few stacks of Nexo Alpha (look it up) in my living room, I would be able to reach some hideous SPLs at maximum level. Using that lot, at close distance, with a very very quiet house and perfectly silent amplifiers, I might (might) be able to hear the background noise of the CD itself at the start of each track.
I wouldn't hear the noise at the end of the track, though, because I'd be profoundly deaf within minutes.

Back to visual terms, CD has the dynamic range of a totally dark room up to shining a reasonably powerful LED torch into your eyes.
You can exceed that dynamic range by going from a totally dark room, and looking directly at the Sun.

The LED torch is already bright enough to give you the full range of what your eyes can deal with, so there's no need to risk further damage by finding something even brighter.

Just as sound engineers compress audio to fit within a fairly small dynamic range (20dB is considered good), it's also obvious that there is a similar dynamic range compression occurring in the video world. If you watch a documentary, for instance, where they pan the camera and the Sun passes across the screen, your TV does not blind you with the light. The camera sensor is overloaded, and shows white. It's nowhere near as bright as the sun, of course, because of the limitations of both your TV and the camera.

I can see that, if you're manipulating photographs on your computer (just like audio in a DAW, as I've mentioned before) having the processing option to handle a large dynamic range might be useful. However, once you've done the processing and are looking at the finished picture, there's no need for such a large dynamic range any more - the screen or printing won't allow it to be transmitted anyway, just as acoustic limitations won't allow us to hear the full dynamic range of a CD.



When it comes to sampling frequency, what we're doing is making it possible to transmit data that's outside of our audible spectrum. That's literally it. To reiterate, a 44.1kHz sample rate allows us to perfectly transmit audio up to 22kHz. A 192kHz sample rate means we can transmit audio up to 96kHz.

The visual equivalent of that is trying to capture, transmit, and reproduce(?) light that is well outside of what we can actually see. Ultra-violet, for instance.
Most cameras don't pick up UV - their sensors are designed to reject it.
Most image formats, as far as I know, don't bother to store UV data. I suppose it might be possible, though. The file sizes would be larger, though. Sound familiar?
... and most screens and/or printers, as far as I know, won't transmit UV data.
Even if we made special screens and ink, we still wouldn't be able to see it anyway.
So, what's the point in insisting that the UV data is stored and delivered to us?

Back to audio, insisting on 192kHz audio is similarly pointless. Not only do the microphones not pick up much past 20kHz, our amplifiers and speakers typically won't reproduce those ultra-high-frequency signals that our ears can't detect.
For some reason, though, the HiFi world has latched on to 192/24 (or higher!) as the Ultimate Thing To Have.

It isn't.

However, it isn't all bad. 192/24 has got people really listening to and appreciating music and quality reproduction, and that's not a bad thing.

Chris
 
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tomas emma irace

Active member
Apr 19, 2020
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"the screen or printing won't allow it to be transmitted anyway "

actually, i did a 1 meter 16-ink 48-bit giclee print for an exhibition. it's beyond what screens can reproduce. the colours in the triptych are yellow/orange and purple/blue mostly, and the colours just "pop" out. the firey pic basically glows, and the purple night sky is so deep, way beyond blue. if you pay for editing, it feels you could touch the pic, it's so real. what some reviews of them new headphones for big bucks was talking about, it was like being on stage listening live.


also, to note, are neon colours. i mean, on clothes for example. the pinks are more pink than pink, the yellows get a radiant green tint to them, and so on. i don't know how it works, but it does work, and it is beyond the rgb spectrum. apple got heralded long ago for incorpating rgby - an extra yellow pixel, into their screens. and many women have an extra yellow receptor in their eyes, giving them much better colour vision.

"When it comes to sampling frequency, what we're doing is making it possible to transmit data that's outside of our audible spectrum. "

what i don't understand in your reasoning is the dynamic range. if you get twice the amount of data, you'll get a smoother transition. while most of these anti-hq people are saying it's useless high frequencies you get, but you also get more detail. and your link ignored this fact with dacs, just ran past it in his text. why in the world would we need 35/844, if anything above 16/44 is inaudible?

"So, the dynamic range that CDs are capable of will far exceed what's possible in a typical listening room. "

if what you're saying is true, then how in the world do cds get mastered, if it's impossible to hear and finetune all the details?

you meant 20hz to 20khz, surely? the 44100 sample rate is because of nyquist's research:

"The Nyquist–Shannon sampling theorem says the sampling frequency must be greater than twice the maximum frequency one wishes to reproduce. Since human hearing range is roughly 20 Hz to 20,000 Hz, the sampling rate had to be greater than 40 kHz."
- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/44,100_Hz#Human_hearing_and_signal_processing

"Not only do the microphones not pick up much past 20kHz"

you claim you are a sound engineer, but do you seriously only record in 44/16? i record even vocals in stereo and then merge them, to get a higher dynamic range than what would be normally possible - the sound goes above 0db, which works with 32-bit floating point in my daw

with this track i got the levels perfect, and when merging the sound quality on the vocals were real good. i did though try to get the replaygain giving me -7db response on all tracks with as simple limiter, and in retrospect the whole record sounds grainy. haven't delved much into compressors, seems like a huge job.

 

chris661

Well-known member
Oct 30, 2019
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Okay, I give up.

You're swinging wildly from "I don't know much about audio, so I'm trying to find parallels in visual media." to "I know everything about audio."


I believe I've made the case very clear, but there still seems to be a gap in understanding.

As a last attempt to clear things up:
- Sampling frequency sets the maximum frequency that can be stored on the medium
- Bit depth sets the range, in decibels, from the background noise of the medium, up to the maximum signal level.

Visual parallels:
- Range of light that's being stored. RGB is enough - there's no need to collect UV and Xray data
- Going from black to very bright white is enough - there's no need to unleash the Sun on your retinas.

44.1kHz/16-bit is enough of both of those for high-fidelity music reproduction. You get a very large dynamic range (more than can be obtained acoustically in a typical living room), and all audible signals can be transcribed perfectly. Nothing more is needed there.


For recording, it's useful to have even more dynamic range available. That way, you can record exceptionally loud transients without digital clipping, while still retaining information that might be 50dB+ down.
Remember, if you set your compressor (or limiter, since a limiter is just a fast compressor with a high ratio) to attenuate those transients, you're effectively throwing away dynamic range. That's literally what it's designed to do.
However, if you throw away a lot of dynamic range, then that background noise will start to creep in. High bit depths just mean the background noise stays away for longer.
Useful for studio stuff, not an issue for HiFi.

You're about the only person I know of that records vocals in stereo, and simultaneously you haven't learnt about compressors.

To make things abundantly clear, yes, I do claim to be a sound engineer. I've worked on-stage with artists that have been in the charts. I have a degree in Physics, and I've been published several times by one of the biggest magazines in the live sound industry. After my articles go out, people from around the world have got in touch with me personally to discuss things further. One of them was head of engineering at EV.

Regards,
Chris

PS - I'd run far away from any HiFi equipment that claimed to transport me to being on-stage with the musicians. The stage monitor mixes are rarely well-balanced (each musician needs to hear themself, plus a few channels relevant to them), and often very loud.
 

tomas emma irace

Active member
Apr 19, 2020
6
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25
ok. =)

what's ev?

and you're still evading my question about dacs, which would make your whole world fall apart. just as your link. i'll go back to where you dared answering!

"It probably is real, but that doesn't mean it's beneficial.
We need DACs to convert 1s and 0s to analogue waveforms that our amplifiers can amplify. "

yes, and then, why, do they upscale it? wouldn't it be better if we had a higher quality originals, so they wouldn't have to make the original signal all blurry?

from your link!

" This allows for simpler, smoother, more reliable analog anti-aliasing filters, and thus higher fidelity."

yes, there we have it! smoother sound and higher fidelity is what you get with 24/192. no need to upsample it in a way that messes up the sound, where every 1/44100:th change in sound looks like a blurry squarewave.

"I have a degree in Physics "

so? i make metaphysical poetry. so we have a clash of cultures. maybe you need to upgrade your knowledge, stop partying like it's 1979! and einstein never bragged about his schooling.

"and simultaneously you haven't learnt about compressors. "

it's not that i can't. i just don't want to. seems a lot of work, and i'm lazy. i only work 3 months on a record.

"I know everything about audio."

where did i say that? i take it as a compliment though. thankyou! you're the one that's swaying, and trembling, and think you know it all. you're no authority.

since you didn't know that it's 20hz to 20khz, not 22khz, i suggest you read up about nyquist. he was a swede, like me, by the way! and still, it's only a theory. not a law.

i'm an audodidact. so i just play around, and something original comes out it, eventually. in the musical world, you'd call it krautrock. and i have no respect for authority, and originality is king, making me punk. and then i usually make dark things, and i don't like fast stuff. so that's sotz. so you're battling with a krautpunksotz musician. =P

haha, i knew it! 44/16 is vhs quality audio! how ironic. talk about fidelity, man oh man!

"44.1 kHz was deemed the highest usable rate compatible with both PAL and NTSC video"

too bad you stepped out of the ring already!

as they said in mortal kombat, YOU LOSE.
 
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