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  »  New  Chesky Records went "raw files"...  Chesky Records went "raw files"....  Didital Things  Forum     0  15733  04-16-2009
  »  New  Pacific Microsonics Model 2..  This is very typical....  Didital Things  Forum     85  590946  05-28-2009
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  »  New  A need for Resolution /Sampling Assessment Test..  Well, we kind of 'have' a file Virginity Assessment Tes...  Didital Things  Forum     1  21100  10-06-2009
04-09-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Antonio J.
Madrid, Spain
Posts 272
Joined on 08-16-2004

Post #: 21
Post ID: 10194
Reply to: 10192
I play them on Foobar
fiogf49gjkf0d
So I just need to click "open files" I add all the ones into a given work and the program plays them in a row. Probably sound quality is not near of what you get from your software, but considering how handicapped is the system I use, I really don't mind very much. It's good enough for me.
BTW, the Brahms' Requiem is wonderful. Thanks again for highlighting it.
04-22-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
manisandher
London
Posts 157
Joined on 09-05-2008

Post #: 22
Post ID: 10304
Reply to: 10194
Shedding some light
fiogf49gjkf0d
I've just received a really interesting email from
Mark Donahu, 

Chief Mastering Engineer at Soundmirror. I really appreciate his taking time to reply to my query - they're obviously a decent bunch of guys there...

PS. Sorry if this post is full of smileys - don't know why these are here.


-----Original Message-----
> From: "Mani Sandher" <mani@the2ndtier.com>
>

Date: Wed, 22 Apr 2009 11:49:25
> To: <info@soundmirror.com>
> Subject: BSO AIFF 88.2/24 files

> Hi,

> I've recently downloaded a number of these files from the BSO website. They
> sound fantastic!

> However, the HDCD indicator on my DAC appears when I play them. Of course,
> 88.2/24 files don't need to be HDCD-encoded, so I'm assuming that you have
> used a Pacific Microsonics ADC to record and that this is applying a certain
> 'code' to the LSB which is fooling my DAC.

> Could you shed some light on this?

> Mani.


Mani,
Yes, the files were created using the HDCD Model 1 AD converter and you
will actually get improved audio if your DA converter properly decodes
the HDCD (Even at 88.2 kHz /24 bit!)
There is information about the filtering and dithering used in the AD
conversion process encoded into the master that allow the DA converter
to optimize its own reconstruction filter.  If you can turn off the HDCD
decoding you will find a significant decrease in the spatial imaging and
overall imaging acuity.
After extensive listening tests to all the available DSD sample rate
converters and many of the top tier AD converters (Meitner, dCS, Prism,
Lavery and Mytek) we concluded that the Pacific Microsonics conversion
was the best available means of converting the DSD source material to
88.2 PCM.
We're glad you're enjoying the new releases.
 
All the best,
Mark Donahue

PPS by Romy: I just reformatted you post. In the right corner of editor there is “W” button that remove all “style” formatting from coped and pasted text.
04-22-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,735
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 23
Post ID: 10305
Reply to: 10304
About the Soundmirror comments.
fiogf49gjkf0d
 Mark Donahue wrote:

Mani,
Yes, the files were created using the HDCD Model 1 AD converter and you
will actually get improved audio if your DA converter properly decodes
the HDCD (Even at 88.2 kHz /24 bit!)
There is information about the filtering and dithering used in the AD
conversion process encoded into the master that allow the DA converter
to optimize its own reconstruction filter.  If you can turn off the HDCD
decoding you will find a significant decrease in the spatial imaging and
overall imaging acuity.
After extensive listening tests to all the available DSD sample rate
converters and many of the top tier AD converters (Meitner, dCS, Prism,
Lavery and Mytek) we concluded that the Pacific Microsonics conversion
was the best available means of converting the DSD source material to
88.2 PCM.
We're glad you're enjoying the new releases. 
 
Mani,

Thanks for sharing this, it is interesting and a bit disconcerting.

I disagree with Mark that HDCD is beneficial for 88.2kHz/24bit, at least my experiments suggested that it was not. From a different perspective to decode HDCD I need to play Pacific DAC and it is not my DAC of preference for 88.2kHz/24bit. When Mark suggests you to compare imaging with HDCD and without it hi is a bit misleading you. The advantages that you might hear would not come from the HDCD itself but from the fact that when HDCD is activated then Pacific might run LLE (Low Level Extension) algorithm  - reportedly by some serious pro folks with whom I consulted -  the best compression algorithm ever was  made available:

http://www.goodsoundclub.com/GetPost.aspx?PostID=5432

You remember I was compiling above that the BSO files with all their quality are not as good imaging wise as I would like them to be. Here it why: because apparently the Soundmirror guys referenced the files compression-wise the HDCD mode activated. Well, how many 88.2kHz/24bit DAC out there that can decode HDCD?

However, what bothered me in Mark Donahue reply is the evidence that the fucking SACD keep screwing us up. Take a look: the record in SACD, well they call it DSD but let pretend that it is the same. Then they need to convert it to PCM. Pay attention what they do – they run SACD D/A and then A/D in to PCM via Pacific. This is idiotic as the DSD to PCM conversion must be done via D to D operation with no conversion to analog. Pacific in D to D mode can’t not read DSD and apparently there are no god D to D convectors out there if the Soundmirror decided to do via analog conversion route. That is a shame. Now how much better would be if people abandon that idiotic SACD/DSD and Mark Donahue would record BSO right in PCM at 88.2 kHz/24bit or 172.2 kHz/24bit format? Then the files that we get will be as close to raw master files as it might be.

Once again: the marketing idiots who force professionals to use and consumers to buy SACD  keep vandalizing our recordings with own agenda.
The Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
04-22-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
manisandher
London
Posts 157
Joined on 09-05-2008

Post #: 24
Post ID: 10306
Reply to: 10305
Let's watch our hypocrisy
fiogf49gjkf0d
 Romy the Cat wrote:
Now how much better would be if people abandon that idiotic SACD/DSD and Mark Donahue would record BSO right in PCM at 88.2 kHz/24bit or 172.2 kHz/24bit format? Then the files that we get will be as close to raw master files as it might be.


I think most people who frequent this site would totally agree with you here.

However, let's just remember that these files do actually sound very good:
  • "tonally the files are very fine"
  • "They have no compression, dynamic like hell, colorful and very good balanced."
  • "what they do is the VERY right direction to go."
  • "Absolutely wonderful files"
  • "The files blew my FM files out water"
  • "Macondo can’t handle dynamic of the BSO Ordinal files."

Also, maybe converting from SACD to PCM via analogue isn't that crazy after all:
  • "... any 'edited' file, a file with bit-rate change, a sampling rate change, a format change are not the representative of what digital is all bout but rather the evidence how much possible to screw up digital without recognizing it."
  • "I have seen people who refuse to do 88kHz to 44kHz conversion but instead they D/A 88kHz files and then A/D the feed to 44kHz as they feel that it has less damage to Sound then DSP 88kHz to 44kHz."

Mani.
04-22-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,735
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 25
Post ID: 10308
Reply to: 10306
I do not see hypocrisy but rather consistency.
fiogf49gjkf0d

It is not US’s Fox News  and not Stereophile and there is no need to pull the fractions of "stupid" soundbytes to prove any agendas. Anyone whoever are frequent this site know in context of what the said was said. Most important that I know what I said and how I thought and frankly I think that my thought process is incredibly consisting. I ma saying it not because I feel a need to defend my view but because it is what it is. Let see.

Yes, the BSO files do actually very good but as I always say: are they sound as good as they could sound?

The very next day after I heard the BSO files I posted (all my posts are still there):

“The Mahler is a bit too wicked and unfriendly with some strange imaging/stereo transformation/corruption…”

“What to my surprise I learned is that FF compression and FM noise (dither) makes Macondo to sound more even in a way to image more interesting.”

Pay attention that I found the imaging on BSO files not up to the pair with the rest qualities of those files and in some cases even my FM recordings of those concerts (that not even contestable with  BSO 88/24 files)  to be very much contestable or even better in term of imaging. It was not my fantasy or my will to criticize the BSO files but my knowledge how BSO shell sound recorded

Today in your post Mark Donahue said: “If you can turn off the HDCD decoding you will find a significant decrease in the spatial imaging and overall imaging acuity.”

Condensing that I do not use HDCD-able Pacific to play the BSO files do you see a consistency in my and his comments? Pay attention that Mark Donahue is the individual who in charge of all BSO life broadcasts and he very well know the rule of the game; in fact he owns the game…

Did you pay attention that at the very same day I heard the Mr. Donahue’s file I posted the following post:

http://www.goodsoundclub.com/GetPost.aspx?PostID=10195

… where I stressed that the properly applied compression might be beneficial. The reasons I did it because I found the uncompressed BSO files a bit disturbing as some dynamic aspects tear performing space apart.

Do not forget that BSO was recorded by “American recording techniques” many closed up microphones, miced-up sections and so on. It was not 2 mics dummy head recording where distanced allow some natural phase randomization. The instruments sound a bit hot and “space” managed by art of mastering and mixing instead the art position and playing.  I am not against the “American recording techniques” and the Soundmirror did fine job to mix the BSO sound…. but pay attention – I was complained that it was now there due to unreasonable and a slight uncontrolled use of dynamics.  What it turned out to be after all is that SoundMirror implied that “proper” BSO mixing only with HDCD’s compression activated. Well, I do not know how many folks out there with 88kHz and HDCD but since you do have this option then be judge yourself and take under consideration that 99.9999% of listeners will play them like I do – without the HDCD.

Regarding the SACD to PCM conversion – I do not know.  I have no idea what is out there but the fact that the conversion go over analog is ridicules. Particularly I feel that it is ridicules because the best SACD players of today play SACD disks and right there convert the stream into 344KHz and do further PCM not SACD decoding. I wish SoundMirror do not use SACD at all, record in PCM and if the Morons want to have SACD then make them from PCM files. BTW, if I am not mistaken up to recently all editing in SACD was done by silent conversion of DSD to PSM and then conversion back.

And the last. Whden I said about “VERY right direction to go” I meant my delight that BSO file went away from the idiotic 5 channel format that they started with and let us to have 88K 2ch stereo. As I posted at AA (now the dirt have deleted the AA those posts) I made my best to crash BSO sever the first few days after the 88K 2ch stereo files become available. I sent an insane amount of notifications about the BSO new options. My objective were to swamp BSO sever with orders, to make this server to choke with traffic, to send BSO the message that when they make right actions then the customers will come. I wish BSO do more or it, I wish they signed guest conductors to the deal and I wish 20-30 orchestras around the word do the same what BSO did with their 88K 2ch adventure. If it were so then we have a perfect model how orchestras and listeners might exists without the stupid music industry… BTW, I was a person who advised them the price the files $30-$40 per concert.  So, I do feel that BSO went to very right direction.

However, could the Sound of the BSO file be better?  Yes, it is and I feel that reconsidering the use the HDCD compression might be a first step.  Anyhow, I see no hypocrisy in what I advocate but rather very constrictive and very specific criticism. Be advised that you will not hear any single public voice out there who would offer any constrictive criticism about BSO sound quality. The Morons see 88kHz and they immediately have own brain and sense blackouted and they are willing to kiss the files in the asses. The exchange of stupid drooling is not my definition of collaboration and education…. but is you read my site for a while then you might know it…

The Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
04-23-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
manisandher
London
Posts 157
Joined on 09-05-2008

Post #: 26
Post ID: 10325
Reply to: 10305
HDCD @ 24/88.2
fiogf49gjkf0d
Firstly, I'd like to make an apology to Mark Donahue - I didn't get his permission to paste his PM to me, and I should have done.
 Romy the Cat wrote:
I disagree with Mark that HDCD is beneficial for 88.2kHz/24bit...

But here is something that Mark has given me permission to paste:

"A little information is dangerous. I find it incredible that people with absolutely no understanding about the technology and its application feel the need to speak with the authority of an expert. The HDCD processes "Peak Extension" and "Low Level Extension" are only available when creating 44.1kHz/16 bit material. These processes are user selectable and were not used in the creation of the BSO Classics masters. Further, we have not made a master in our history that utilized any  process that requires decoding to be played back correctly. Period. At 88.2 kHz the HDCD process alerts the PMI filter chip in the DA converter that the material was created  with an AD converter with a known anti-aliasing filter and noise shaping curve. The PMI filter chip can then utilize a reconstruction filter optimized for the specific AD converter used for the creation of the master. This process is invisible to all other DA converters and the HDCD dither/noise shaping is considered to be the dither of choice for high resolution material."

Mani.
04-23-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,735
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 27
Post ID: 10328
Reply to: 10325
Putting the picture together.
fiogf49gjkf0d

 manisandher wrote:
"A little information is dangerous. I find it incredible that people with absolutely no understanding about the technology and its application feel the need to speak with the authority of an expert. The HDCD processes "Peak Extension" and "Low Level Extension" are only available when creating 44.1kHz/16 bit material. These processes are user selectable and were not used in the creation of the BSO Classics masters. Further, we have not made a master in our history that utilized any  process that requires decoding to be played back correctly. Period. At 88.2 kHz the HDCD process alerts the PMI filter chip in the DA converter that the material was created  with an AD converter with a known anti-aliasing filter and noise shaping curve. The PMI filter chip can then utilize a reconstruction filter optimized for the specific AD converter used for the creation of the master. This process is invisible to all other DA converters and the HDCD dither/noise shaping is considered to be the dither of choice for high resolution material."
I do not think that anyone contest Mark’s position of authority of an expert and I no idea why he feel a need to be defensive. What we do is trying to reconstruct from bits and pleases of information some facts about the mastering process of the BSO recording and in a way of doing to learn something.  They were Mark’s words: “you will actually get improved audio if your DA converter properly decodes the HDCD (Even at 88.2 kHz /24 bit!)” that were misleading as he referred initially to “decoding HDCD” not to just using HDCD marks to throw a DAC to engage the “anti-aliasing filter and noise shaping curve”. From he said initially I was under impression that BSO file are HDCD encoded that I found ridicules to do under 88/24.

There was second factor that I found worth to note. Experimenting with Low Level Extension in past (all on 16 bit) I did found that Low Level Extension (or actually a mild Pacific’s proprietary compression) had a positive effect and was very much align with some of my critic of the BSO files. I am not exactly calling the BSO file as “intelligently uncompressed” but there is something in me feels that suggest me to do so. The BSO files are in a way as an un-groomed dog where dymick in a way obliterates the fine satellites of imaging. I thought that with “intelligent compression” that might be addressed. With FM files I have not an “intelligent compression” but over compression and dynamically the raw 88/24 files and not even close to FM result. However, from imaging position FM results are very much contestable and in some way more interesting. Do not forget that the 88/24 files and the FM files were most likely made from the very same feed.

I am writing it and it ridicules that I put myself in a position where it sounds like I am trying to solicit Mr.Donahue… to “properly” compress his files.  I certainly do not do it and I certainly do not imply that I know how they need to be compressed.  But I would also point out that from a certain perspective I do not consider the BSO files as “as good as they could be” and I did comment about some of my dissatisfaction in imagine department. A hint might be in the fact that Deutsch Requiem is better than other files), what different between them only Mark Donahue knows.

Finally, I am not specializing in mastering of recordings or about the evaluation of technologies to do so but rather in listed and discriminating the results. What I see in this exchange is that Mark unwillingly agrees with my observations. He said “If you can turn off the HDCD decoding you will find a significant decrease in the spatial imaging and overall imaging acuity” but it look like exactly how we, the people with no HDCD processors, hear the BSO files.

I think instead of blaming me in impersonisation of authority while have little knowledge Mr. Donahue might use his considerable knowledge and to make our BSO recordings to play via the HDCD-disabled processors without the “significant decrease in the spatial imaging and overall imaging acuity”. We are in away all rowing in a same boat and have the same objectives – to make BSO sound file as good as they could be. The relying on HDCD to engaged specific filters I think is not kosher way to do as the unfortunately there is not a lot of DACs with Pacific decoding chips out there and even those that can recognize HDCD and have on-board the complex interpolation HDCD decoding filter  are not necessary the worthy performers otherwise.  This conversation encourages me to rewire my Pacific and to try using it’s D/A for paying the BSO files. Nowadays one of my Melquiades out of service but when I will be back and when my installation will be up then most likely I  will try to do it.

Rgs, Romy the Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
04-24-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,735
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 28
Post ID: 10339
Reply to: 10328
Further though about the BSO files.
fiogf49gjkf0d

Doing some further thinking by my mind that has “little understanding about the technology” I would like to share another concern that for my little mind does make since.

According to Mr. Donahue comments above playing the BSO files with a possessor that has HDCD decoding activated provide a “significant increase in the spatial imaging and overall imaging acuity” as the activation of HDCD decoding will inform the “DA converter that the material was created  with an AD converter with a known anti-aliasing filter and noise shaping curve”. OK, I can’t corroborate on it now, Mani keeps silence about the validity of this claim (most likely he just has no options tot shut down the HDCD decoding as most of the DACs has no such a manual switch). I do not believe that what Mark Donahue suggest is not true. Most likely it is what it is, but if it is so then… I do not like it. Let me to explain.

Let pretend that we have an objective to deliver to the end user the SoundMirror’s BSO file at the best possible condition in term sound quality. If the configuration and type of the filters that prevents frequency sampled at higher than one-half the sample rate (aliasing) so affective to sound (wish it true) then let see what filter might be the most optimum for us?

Mark Donahue went for the filters that were used by Pacific in their HDCD. I have no knowledge what kind filters they used in there BUT the HDCD was designed and was beneficial ONLY at 44.1KHz format. So, regardless what they did in there the signal had to be stopped at 22KHz with the brick-wall effect. Yes, the Pacific is very good 44KHz DAC…. BUT the SoundMirror’s BSO file is not 44KHz files and this set all bid off.

This is just a brainstorming of the concept, and if Mark or others read it then do not be damn to recognize it as criticism but rather as collaboration how to get best possible results. What I question: if the selection of the 44KHz-targeted brick-wall filter is rational for 88kHz files. People go for sharp and complex filters at 44KHz as the Nyquist point is right there, very close to the upper edge of signal. With the 88kHz we care less about it as the Nyquist point is very far and we can go away with much softer filter and with much more phase-friendly curve. This absolutely certainly would NOT be a filtration that was meant for strictly 44KHz operation.

Now, we all know that anti-aliasing filters in many ways have negative effect to sound. But remember: our abstract objective is to have the best sound on the user side. So, what SoundMirror do? They select the configuration where the best Sound will be under a condition when s user engages the anti-aliasing filters designed for 44KHz HDCD. Leaving aside the fact that there are not a lot of HDCD DACs out there let ask ourselves if it was the best solution for BSO 88kHz files? My answer is that it was not. I think the best would be if SoundMirror folks use not the 44KHz HDCD filters for their reference but rather the 88kHz with no filters at all.

Sound damn, isn’t it? Well not necessarily. I think that amount of users out there who would be able to take advantage of HDCD filters is no higher than the amount of people who would be able to play the files with no filter at all. The advantage of playing the 88kHz files with no post-conversion filtration of any kind enormous theoretically and practically. Why SoundMirror folks did not go there? Well, because SoundMirror is a part of industry establishment and they need to embrace all industry rules of the game, no matter how stupid the rules are. However, in the case the BSO files the SoundMirror own the rules, why wouldn’t they get for the best the best?

To get the best it would need very little: the SoundMirror need to use for this reference while they master the BSO files a R2R Multibit DAC with no post D/A filtration of ANY kind. The true Multibit has no wide- bandwidth noise, the signal is fully reconstructed and there is no need for noise-shaping. Averything is already there, just buffering the signal and feed it to amps - and you have the rawest possible, virgin signal not contaminated by phase anomalies of any filtration – it imposable to have anything better than this.  Talking about “imaging”, that is a manifestation of phase consistency…

Sure you will have remains of the 88kHz sampling rate right along with you signal, so what? When did you hear the 88kHz last time? There is however a reason why SoundMirror would not go there, the industry things… Take a look at the SoundMirror control mastering rooms:

  • The monitors are B&W Matrix series powered by Threshold amplifiers.
  • Dunlavy SC series speakers powered by Classe amplifiers
  • B&W Diamond series monitors powered by B&W amplifiers.

Is any pattern that you recognize in there? Yes, there one: all amplification that SoundMirror uses is push-pull, solid-state, high power amplification that most likely uses feedback, a lot of feedback. Those amps would NOT be very friendlily with high content of HF power in input signal and they very much might go berserk, oscillating, burn tweeters and do other nasty things. However, a good no-feedback amp with reasonable amount of open-loop equalization as well as any no-fedback SET users have would do perfectly fine with unfiltered Multibit output and will not have ANY of negative effect from the absence of post-conversion filters. I wish SoundMirror use THAT as the reference not the filters that were constructed for 16 bit 44kHz. The HDCD was wonderful under the umbrella of 16bit Red Book CDs. Now we are way beyond it and I think the SoundMirror with their 88kHz files might move forward along with the opportunities the new format implies.

Rgs, Romy the caT


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
04-28-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
manisandher
London
Posts 157
Joined on 09-05-2008

Post #: 29
Post ID: 10375
Reply to: 10305
Can SACD really sound this good?
fiogf49gjkf0d
 Romy the Cat wrote:
Now how much better would be if people abandon that idiotic SACD/DSD and Mark Donahue would record BSO right in PCM at 88.2 kHz/24bit or 172.2 kHz/24bit format? Then the files that we get will be as close to raw master files as it might be.The Cat

I agree.

Unlike you, I've never heard 4-bit DSD. But whatever DSD/SACD format Soundmirror is using, it's pretty damn good - it sounds nothing like the 'woolly' SACD I've experienced. Could the sound quality be improved? Sure, in the ways that you've outlined. However, the criticisms that you voiced in your earlier posts don't seem to me to be down to the original use of DSD/SACD recording...

Mani.
04-28-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,735
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 30
Post ID: 10377
Reply to: 10375
I wish the stupid SACD never took place
fiogf49gjkf0d

 manisandher wrote:

Unlike you, I've never heard 4-bit DSD. But whatever DSD/SACD format Soundmirror is using, it's pretty damn good - it sounds nothing like the 'woolly' SACD I've experienced. Could the sound quality be improved? Sure, in the ways that you've outlined. However, the criticisms that you voiced in your earlier posts don't seem to me to be down to the original use of DSD/SACD recording...

I am not a big expert in SACD. I never had and SACD machine and the only reasons for it is that any single double layer SACD/CD that I have seen had absolutely horrifying quality of sound in CD layer. Most of those recordings were re-mastered and if you compared the regular CDs from beginning of 90s to the CD-layer on the SACD for 2001-2003 then it will be very clear that the idiots who produced them deserve to be castrated without anesthesia. It is not the format itself that turned me off initially but the extremely barbaric mastering that I heard on CD layer. In fact I trash quite a few SACD because of that.

I did not have any negative feeling about the SACD per say at that time but knowing that the VERY same people who vandalized the 16/44 layers were responsible for the SACD recordings I was very cold to SACD. In a few year I asked a friend of my who know very well the depth of digital design and mathematics to look into SACD and after his research he informed me that it looks very strange as it has not enough of “something” to do what format is need to do. I do not remember what it was but he has very deep analyses done. In another few years, sometime in 2005-2006 I learned that the DSD was originals designed not 1-bit but 4-bit processing and what I heard in 1999 was the Meitner’s own 4-bit non commercial prototype. Whwn I passed the information that the DSD meant to be 4-bit to a friend of my who did the math  he was laughing – as according to him ONLY then the whole DSD idea made engineering sense to him.

It would worth to mention that Sony killed the 4-bit DSD as it was “expensive” and embrace the 1-bit DSD – the format that has no theoretical capacity to become “properly implemented”. It is surely better then any 16/44, so what it is still a half-ass solution and I would prefer to stay with high-res (88K-172K) PCM as any editing in DSD anyhow is made by conversion to PCM. I wish the stupid SACD never took place as so many recording were in a way fucked up by SACD...

Then caT


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
04-29-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
manisandher
London
Posts 157
Joined on 09-05-2008

Post #: 31
Post ID: 10384
Reply to: 10377
Using a true multibit for mastering
fiogf49gjkf0d
From http://goodsoundclub.com/Forums/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=6091

 Romy the Cat wrote:
[Dima] feel that Lavry 924 is the only know to him properly implemented true Multibits DAC (and he knows them all) however he feel that there is much more “interesting” way to use this DAC. The DA924 is no oversampling Multibit at 88K and being Multibit is has no wide-bandwidth noise after the converter. The signal is fully shaped and juts care the residual sampling rate minus the sound frequency – means above 60K noise. So, Dima feel that in this case it makes sense for get rid the output stage and complicated and unnecessary output filter and feed mu load directly from the DAC deglitcher. In fact it is what he used on his Multibit for years and he feel that it is a way to go.

Dima admit that it is not universal solution as the UHF nose would be bad or even damaging for some electronics, particularly if is it uses feedback , however in my case what Melquiades has no feedback and the “grid bias” acts as a mild low pass filter he feels that it would be problem-free.

Probably if I try it I will put still a first order low pass filter after DAC somewhere around 18-10K (juts by hearing) and it will elevate the output impedance. I have 1 feet Dominus that I might use and I might position the DAC very close to load. What I am concerned if anyone who have playback capable for full-scale bass use such an approach. I am afraid that DA924 (that has a phenomenal lower bass now) might lose some of it driver and bass is the one that usually go first… So, it you use the Multibits-driver-through approach and have something to express on the subject then raise your voice…



Did you ever try this?

Mani.
04-29-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
manisandher
London
Posts 157
Joined on 09-05-2008

Post #: 32
Post ID: 10385
Reply to: 10339
A universal solution
fiogf49gjkf0d
 Romy the Cat wrote:
I think that amount of users out there who would be able to take advantage of HDCD filters is no higher than the amount of people who would be able to play the files with no filter at all.

Maybe.

But there is a BIG difference.

If you don't have an HDCD filter, you just lose the added "spatial imaging and overall imaging acuity" that such a filter would provide. If you don't have a no-feedback amp, you lose your tweeters and who knows what else.

Mani.
04-29-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,735
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 33
Post ID: 10388
Reply to: 10385
Yep, the “universal solution” is tough
fiogf49gjkf0d
 manisandher wrote:

Did you ever try this?
Nope, I do not yet but I know people who did and who report very positive results. I think there are even some commercial companies who did it. I spoke with Lavry people, trying to commission them to do a custom option on DA924 but they did not badge…
 manisandher wrote:

But there is a BIG difference.

If you don't have an HDCD filter, you just lose the added "spatial imaging and overall imaging acuity" that such a filter would provide. If you don't have a no-feedback amp, you lose your tweeters and who knows what else.
Yes, good point.

The Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
05-25-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
steverino
Posts 327
Joined on 05-23-2009

Post #: 34
Post ID: 10583
Reply to: 10377
SACD one bit processing due to Sony marketing?
fiogf49gjkf0d


I"m not an expert on SACD either but my recollection from the late 90s is that Sony went to 1 bit out of a desire for copy protection of the digital encoding. One bit is not editable in DSD and would have to be processed in PCM or analogue. Don't ask me to explain their reasoning. However it is also true that the PCM folks went into hysterics around the same time with all their even worse copy protection schemes. While I agree that SACD one bit is flawed I still hear something positive in it (that is non digital sounding)as far as transient speed and maybe a certain transparency are concerned. I wish I shared Romy's optismism concerning 88 or 1762k PCM as an archival medium. I've heard raw files at these rates (ie 88/24 or 176/24) in the recording studion and was not thrilled. They're OK and better than CD but still have a similar digital character to the CD sound albeit reduced unpleasantness. At least to my ears.
07-03-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,735
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 35
Post ID: 10970
Reply to: 10325
OK, I did the HDCD.
fiogf49gjkf0d

While I, waken up by Mani’s idea to us MP as the only DAC, was playing with new Pacific I have researched deeper the HDCD subject in the BSO recordings. Mark Donahu, from AudioMirror with his slightly patronizing attitude might consider himself as a person with “absolute understanding about the technology” but in his quest for being “special” he stepped away from Truth.

His sentiment that BSO files were HDCD encoded intentionally to in order to “utilize better reconstruction filters” was not accurate. I did find a suitable for myself configuration with my Pacific how I can read the HDCD and I can testify that it make absolutely no difference at 88/22. Further research of this subject led me to realize that the problem was not that there is no difference between “with HDCD” or “without HDCD” but that Pacific has non-defeatable HDCD decoding. Using different configurations it is possible to make Pacific to show off the presents of HDCD code or not but if Pacific does not indicate the HDCD presents but the HDCD exist in Digital_ IN then the HDCD filter is engaged automatically. So, the Mark warring that “If you can turn off the HDCD decoding you will find a significant decrease in the spatial imaging and overall imaging acuity” was absolutely incorrect. There is no ways to turn off the HDCD decoding PROPORLY in Pacific but Lavry Gold that do not understand HDCD does not indicate any “decrease in the spatial imaging and overall imaging acuity” what it runs against Pacific with HDCD EXPLICIT on.

Also, AudioMirror sentiment that the HDCD was used “strategically” during them “mastering” the files was not exactly accurate. Pacific during DD operation and rate or depth change automatically reinsert the LSB code. So, Mark Donahu most likely recorded in SACD as most of those folks unfortunately do nowadays (they believe that it is DSD), then they converted it into PCM, most likely 172kHz. Then they “master” it and down converted it to 88kHz. The down conversion they did with Pacific, which is unquestionably the best tool for the job. While Pacific run the 172kHz- 88kHz it inject the LSB code that makes people to feel the material has HDCD code.

It will be interesting if AudioMirror crate two parallel masters in 172kHz and SACD during recording, but it is hard to know truth. The negative moments that we hear at the BSO files are not from the technology but from “Mastering” and heavy use of multi-microphones…. but this is a whole another story....

The Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
07-03-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
manisandher
London
Posts 157
Joined on 09-05-2008

Post #: 36
Post ID: 10973
Reply to: 10970
Non-defeatable HDCD encoding @24/88.2???
fiogf49gjkf0d
Here's a reply by Paul Stubblebine to something I posted on computeraudiophile.com:

"When encoding to 44.1/16, there are a couple of options for fitting the 24 bit source into the 16 bit delivery format. The user may use one or the other or neither, operator's choice. But at any setting of 88KHz or higher those options are not even available. You've got a Model Two, Mani, check it out for yourself. There are no options for turning off any so-called HDCD functionality. Unless you count turning off the flag sensing on the monitor input, which has no effect other than changing the blue light to yellow."

Romy, you record at 24/88.2 - is this the case with the Model Two in AD mode? Or is this just the case in DD mode?

(I won't be able to check for myself until early next week.)

Mani.

07-03-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,735
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 37
Post ID: 10974
Reply to: 10973
More about the HDCD BS at over 1X.
fiogf49gjkf0d

I hate when those industry people steps out really and from facts just to maintain the faces. What would be next: they would record at +5dB digital and suggest that this type of sound cure listeners shin cancer?

Yes, Paul Stubblebine is correct, in over 16-bit mode the HDCD is not available (or necessary) but the point that Mark Donahu made was that if the 88/24 material has HDCD code then it tricks Pacific to  use “better output filters”. I did not buy this idea as the “better output filters” would be still the filters that were designed for 44kHz. There is no such a thing as “reconstruction filters” as those people like to scare people. It is just a low low-pass filer, nothing more or less, though it might be quite complex in some cases. At 88K and higher the demand to the low-pass filer filter is MUCH less and I see why we need to search for “better 44kHz output filters”. Most likely pacific has different type of filters for 1X, 2X and 4X and it’s it.  I presume that Mr. Donahu comments that “you get improved audio if your DA converter properly decodes
the HDCD (Even at 88.2 kHz /24 bit!)” were made to justify that facts the when Pacific do DD down conversion it automatically re-injects the LSB code, that any DAC would recognize as HDCD encoding.

Anyhow, the point I was making is that when Pacific runs in AD mode, you feed Digital_IN (this is the only way how I use it) and your digital has LSB code (HDCD encoded) then Pacific most likely read and LSB code without you knowing it. If you switch you meter souse from Digital_IN to Ouput then the HDCD indictor will light up blue. It is kind of confusing but if I run DD mode with proper HDCD decoding and AD with the presumed “surreptitious” HDCD decoding and hear no difference then can I assume that that my presumption about the  surreptitiousness of HDCD decoding in AD mode was accurate?

Whatever the “right” answer might be I do not feel that it is important as I see a NEED to encode 2X at HDCD as an absolutely false idea.  Pacific just does it apparently in the way how Mark Donahu used it and Mark created a “justification”, substituting the specific fault of a given processor with a fable about the benefit of HDCD encoding at 88K.

The Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
07-03-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
manisandher
London
Posts 157
Joined on 09-05-2008

Post #: 38
Post ID: 10977
Reply to: 10974
I'm confused!
fiogf49gjkf0d
 Romy the Cat wrote:
Yes, Paul Stubblebine is correct, in over 16-bit mode the HDCD is not available (or necessary)...


No, I think he's saying that you have no choice and that HDCD cannot be defeated @ >16bit: "There are no options for turning off any so-called HDCD functionality."

So, Romy, is he right? If so, how do you defeat HDCD when you record @ 24/88.2 in AD mode?

It may help if I quote what I asked and what Paul replied:

Mani: "... I know of another Model Two user... who does not use the unit's HDCD functionality when recording at resolutions > 16/44.1 - he prefers it without HDCD at these resolutions."

Paul: "... your comments about some user of the Model Two not using HDCD functionality at higher resolutions doesn't make sense. When encoding to 44.1/16, there are a couple of options for fitting the 24 bit source into the 16 bit delivery format. The user may use one or the other or neither, operator's choice. But at any setting of 88KHz or higher those options are not even available. You've got a Model Two, Mani, check it out for yourself. There are no options for turning off any so-called HDCD functionality."

Still confused...

Mani.
07-03-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
manisandher
London
Posts 157
Joined on 09-05-2008

Post #: 39
Post ID: 10979
Reply to: 10977
Confusing myself...
fiogf49gjkf0d
I think Paul thought I was refering to the 'Peak Level Extension' and 'Low Level Extension' processes, which of course are only available at 16/44.1. In which case, his comment about not being able to defeat options that aren't available to you make perfect sense.

However, I was actually refering to the HDCD functionality @ >16/44.1 that Mark Donahue described.

Mani.
07-03-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
manisandher
London
Posts 157
Joined on 09-05-2008

Post #: 40
Post ID: 10980
Reply to: 10974
The real source of my confusion
fiogf49gjkf0d
 Romy the Cat wrote:
Pacific just does it apparently


[EDIT

OK, I understand that in DD, the Model Two will reinsert the LSB. But I'm really interested in what the Model Two does when in AD mode. Would it still add the HDCD flag, or can this be defeated?

Is it feasible that the BSO files were converted SACD->analog->PCM (even if you think this is crazy), in which case the HDCD flag might indeed have been a strategic decision.

EDIT]

So, all the files you've recorded @ 24/88.2 have the HDCD flag? And you've never noticed? How can this be? I'm sure I've read your previous posts Romy where you state that you don't agree with HDCD for >16/44.1 and that you don't use it...

Can you explain?

Mani.

PS. Apologies if I'm being a bit dumb
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