Are MP3's still a thing?

Discussion in 'The Guru's Pub' started by jbscotchman, Apr 4, 2020.

  1. theoneofgod

    theoneofgod Ancient Guru

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    100MB is a hi res FLAC. CD rips to FLAC will be much smaller.

    No lies. They exist.
     
  2. Astyanax

    Astyanax Ancient Guru

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    Yes.

    this format has been demonstrated with noise graphs to behave no differently to 24bit within the realm of human perception.

    You have a soundblaster AE9 right?, the 32bit crap is pure marketting, the dsp operates on 8bit per core on its quattro dsp (same as the XFI) and employs a ESS Saber DAW chip which has a peak capability of 32bit data values, there aren't any 32bit A/D interfaces and sound is limited to the resolution of the lowest capable component.

    Nobody masters in 32bit, and the device is limited to audio output of 24bit at the output stage

    https://www.androidauthority.com/why-you-dont-want-that-32-bit-dac-667621/

    no they don't.

    there are 32bit DACS and DAWS, but no 32bit AD interfaces, any audio device displaying a 32bit format is a bug or a complete misrepresentation of the products capabilities.
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2021
  3. Loobyluggs

    Loobyluggs Ancient Guru

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    https://en.creative.com/p/sound-cards/sound-blasterx-ae-5-pure-edition

    That is the one I got - so, you are saying that Creative Labs have lied to me?
     
  4. theoneofgod

    theoneofgod Ancient Guru

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    Did you read what I quoted? You just disagreed with me at the same time agreed with me.
     

  5. SplashDown

    SplashDown Master Guru

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    How does it work if someone does vinyl rips at 32 bit then.?
     
  6. Astyanax

    Astyanax Ancient Guru

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    Even if someone has the few thousand dollars for studio grade recording hardware (which the AE9 doesn't have) then you'd still be recording imperceptible audio.

    the audio resolution required for vinyl fits within the 16bit resolution, doesn't even need 24bit to fit all the capable dynamic range (12bit, avg 70db, max 78db)
     
  7. theoneofgod

    theoneofgod Ancient Guru

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    So the hardware does exist. That's the point. Not that we can hear the difference or not.
     
  8. Astyanax

    Astyanax Ancient Guru

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    Until the hardware is 32bit the entire chain, whatever option is exposed in the sound properties is irrelevant, a 32bit device with a 24bit A/D is still just outputting 24bits.
     
  9. theoneofgod

    theoneofgod Ancient Guru

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    They said "but there's a 32-bit soundcard with a 32-bit DAC" which is indeed true. Plenty of 32-bit soundcards around. Lacking a 32-bit AD is one thing, but we will call them 32-bit soudcards.

    AKM and TI appear to make 32-bit AD from a quick search.
     
  10. Astyanax

    Astyanax Ancient Guru

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    Something to put on the Soundblaster AE11 then :D
     

  11. Loobyluggs

    Loobyluggs Ancient Guru

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    So - can anyone confirm which soundcard they used in that video please? Because I do not want to watch it.
     
  12. SplashDown

    SplashDown Master Guru

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    I would like to hear other opinions on this, if I cared enough I would ask more about this in Audio Soundcard thread but I'm at 24bit hardware MB ect. so pointless for me really right now. There is always a ton of opinions on this Audio subject since forever really.
     
  13. Mufflore

    Mufflore Ancient Guru

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    What question do you want an answer to?
    I'll have a go, hopefully this is what you want:

    In the following, when I say DAC, I am talking about the whole DAC, not just the chip. The chips themselves are hitting brick walls too but it gets worse once placed in a circuit.
    DAC chips cannot operate with your equipment without being in a circuit.

    The maximum resolution attainable with current electronics is perhaps a little over 22bits, maybe not quite 22bits, somewhere close.
    This is calculated with a simple formula called ENOB (Estimated Number of Bits).
    A 32bit output DAC would not provide any perceivable benefit over 24bit because all the low level detail will be swamped by electronic noise and distortion. We need to make it to 24bits per sample before considering 32bit.
    This is why there is no music produced with higher than 24bits per sample (or equivalent), there is no point, it wastes space and incurs higher costs for storage and electronic hardware.

    The smallest detail using 22bits is equivalent to 1 in 4.2million of the voltage used in driving your power amplifiers pre-amplifier stage.
    ie 1bit from 22bits = 1/(4.2x10^6) of the maximum 22bit value.
    For RCA the maximum output from a DAC is around 2V and XLR is around 4V (in 2 parallel 2V stages, one being the inverse of the other).
    Each 2V analogue stage when subject to 1bit of detail will be fed a maximum of 2V/(4.2x10^6) = 0.47x10^-6V.
    Thats 0.47uV.
    (edited to correct a fumble with the figures, I started with 1 in 6.5 million)

    This is when using the "very best" of analogue circuits costing a LOT. Most consumer electronics are far from this capable. RCA being worse for noise than XLR too when in similar circuits.
    Beyond that electronic noise in the circuits is louder and swamps the signal in different ways.
    I also havent come across an amplifier or speaker with that level of fidelity either, most are much less.
    And what they sound like matters too, fidelity isnt the be all and end all.


    There is a measurement that describes the signal vs noise + distortion called SINAD.
    Not many review sites use it in this form though but it is a fair guide to find how much detail a DAC can expose.
    However it doesnt describe all problems so is only a guide.
    Even then, different measuring equipment (and approaches) can produce slightly different results as with all measurements of this nature, its a tough world at this high resolution!

    SINAD is expressed in dB but can be converted to bits resolution.
    More general information to understand its importance, a long read:
    https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...s/what-matters-about-sinad-measurements.7375/
    Post 17 makes good sense and some good points:
    "Whether someone can detect non-linear distortion is highly depends on perception qualities of the listener. In testing lossy compression for example, we know that trained listeners do a ton better than non-trained. So this is not a static number.

    On why measure, in every case I show SINAD it is accompanied with FFT. It is the FFT that is instructive of whether the distortions can be audible. I realize people mostly focus on the SINAD since it is easier to digest but I do make an attempt to show the picture at the same time.

    SINAD by itself then is best thought of engineering excellence when not focused on too accurately. I show the SINAD figures in four buckets for this reason. No question in my mind that a device in forth bucket is much worse design than those in first or even second bucket. In this manner, we use SINAD as a rough figure of merit without falling into the pitfall of using it too accurately when it doesn't have such predictive power.

    The other reason to show SINAD is that the industry uses THD+N which is the same thing as SINAD. By measuring this we can tell how truthful the manufacturer is in their specifications."

    Their master review page, covers SINAD figures of equipment and lots of other help and actual measurements.
    If you read all this you are better than me!:
    https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/master-review-index.11398/


    Placing the whole listening experience into a single number isnt possible for all situations. The measurements used to create a products SINAD evolve from a broad spectrum of testing, part of which will inevitably have better figures because SINAD gives a worst case figure during all the testing.
    To this end, the Dynamic Range also needs to be considered and is often measured higher than SINAD.
    It is possible to hear more detail than the SINAD indicates but it may not be consistent. Indeed it might not even be possible to hear with some equipment.
    SINAD is a good place to start IMO, studying it will help you get a grip on this topic.

    NOTE:
    All the mentioned measurements can be applied to every part of the signal chain, from the recording through the DAC, cables+ connections, Pre-amp, Amp and Headphones or speakers, etc. Each have their own abilities that allow a certain maximum of detail to be exposed under certain conditions (and have their own problems).
    All this muddies the water a lot compared to only considering the DAC because DACs are by far the most capable element.
    ie practically all speakers, headphones and amplifiers "s/n + distortion" are a lot worse than than that of a good DAC.
    Thats not to say a new DAC with better measurements wont make any difference in your system, just that you could get more from it with better ancillary equipment.

    Theres so much to the topic that I barely scratched the surface of its complexity, and I am by no means the best guide as my ability to think clearly varies each day (medical issue).
    I know enough to please myself and am always learning more.
    Writing this was simplified to get some basic points across without inducing boredom, start reading the above links if you want to go further:)
    I've got a bad head today so this took ages to write.
    I dont mind answering questions and helping, but please keep things nice.
    Cheers :)

    edit
    Not to forget many other sites that can provide a wealth of information.
    SBAF (Super Best Audio Friends) is another very good measurement site that I frequent.
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2021
  14. SplashDown

    SplashDown Master Guru

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    Hey bud... You answered my wonders in your post. But 1 thing why make 32 bit anything then? What use and why make cards with it ect.?
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2021
  15. Airbud

    Airbud Master Guru

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    Hey Mufflore!

    Edit: it works fast here?

    pub2.png
     

  16. Mufflore

    Mufflore Ancient Guru

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  17. Alessio1989

    Alessio1989 Ancient Guru

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    Even realtek HD audio drivers exposes 32 bit outputs, but that's doesn't meant the internal pipeline operates at 32 bit float or int precision. to be honest, unlike some x-fi and post audio dedi crap card, I still cannot hear any difference between 16 and 24 bit audio on realtek integrated chips, so I guess outside internal post processing that you don't wanna use to ruin the audio waves more than the realtek integrated crap does, you will not have any improvement at all (except more overhead on cast/coercion from lower precision to higher).
     
  18. vf

    vf Ancient Guru

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    I quite enjoyed that. Those were the days. Even Total Recall :D Though, I aint going to lie, that was frighteningly disturbing that movie back then when he fell out on the sand of Mars as a kid.
    I was always chasing every VHS of Schwarzenegger and Stallone back then.

    Though I'll never forget that summer simply going to buy the Terminator 2: Judgement Day VHS. That was an instant buy, not rent. That was a great summer of memories. Or was it autumn... I cannot even honestly remember if it was rented first then bought the following year. I just remember playing the movie over and over. Speed was another.


    That magic feeling going from school/work to Blockbuster/HMV/Woolworths/John Menzies to rent or buy. Being in the store looking for a good 30 - 45 minutes coming out with a haul to watch over the weekend.

    Sadly that magic is lost. It's never the same downloading or ordering a Blu-Ray from Amazon or wherever.

    Getting dinner ready then having to rewind a number of tapes. Or have to take a few faulty ones back to get replaced and a day extended. Ghost was one of those.


    The days you and all your friends would have been huddled in the living room watching the latest release with pizza etc. All of them watching it through phones or tablets today.

    I remember a time some getting a little antsy when I once said there is hardly any difference between 16 - 32bit from all the mumbo jumbo marketing you see these days. There is even monster threads about this even on Head-fi about this topic with stupidly priced gear.

    Even the sound on the Gigabyte Z490 Xtreme onboard or the ESSential USB DAC I cannot tell much difference to even the Auzentech X-Fi Prelude through a pair of AKG K702s.
     
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  19. Noisiv

    Noisiv Ancient Guru

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    According to the experts that manufacture the finest DAC chips, resistors, and power regulators, there is theoretically no way to make electronics that are capable of discerning greater than a 20-bit resolution (120dB dynamic range). Any company that claims greater than 20-bit resolution from their DAC is simply full of crap. Oh they can decode 24-bits, because 24-bits does exist in software, but the output from their DAC has less than 20-bits of resolution and dynamic range.

    Based on a 2.5V output on a DAC (higher than average), below are the voltages power supply noise must be below in order to hear the LSB:

    • 16-bit LSB noise floor voltage = 76uV
    • 18-bit LSB noise floor voltage = 19uV
    • 20-bit LSB noise floor voltage = 4.75uV
    • 24-bit LSB noise floor voltage = 0.3uV
    For a reference, a common LM317 regulator, the quality used in most commercial electronics, has about 150uV peak-to-peak noise, and the world’s lowest noise power supplies (we’re talking NASA, not audiophile) have about 5uV of peak-to-peak noise.
    https://www.mojo-audio.com/blog/the-24bit-delusion/


    Even though many recordings are advertised as being 24-bit, all 24 bits were used only in the recording studio to reduce quantization noise. The consumer version was mastered at a much lower bit-rate, usually at or below 20 bits.

    I believe that the quality of the recording plays a far more significant role than the format or resolution it is distributed in. Too bad most of the big recording houses don’t agree with me. To increase profits, recording studio executives insisted that errors be edited out in postproduction, significantly compromising the quality of the original master tapes. In my opinion, this was the end of the golden age of recording.
    https://www.klusster.com/klussters/get-audiowise/publications/dsd-vs-pcm-myth-vs-truth-5
     
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  20. tsunami231

    tsunami231 Ancient Guru

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    Most my music is still mp3 and when rip thing i still make them in to Mp3

    would take to much time re rip my collection into something better, that I wont even hear diffrence
     

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