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Are CD transports obsolete these days? - Page 9

post #121 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by mjb
lff, excellent articulation, thank you!

mjb
I tried to make your point several times in this thread already, thank you for laying it out so eloquently
post #122 of 144
LFF,

Wow.....excellent post. Thank you. I am 27 years old and I've been using a portable audio through out my life and not until recently I can relate to your statement. I used to enjoy the shuffle modes on my PCDPs, MDs, and MP3s player, but lately I'm a bigger fan of listening to album from the start to finish, b/c I feel that that how the album/artist was intended. I also enjoy operating my Sony SCD-1 and audiomods Sony SCD-777ES, press play, and enjoy fine tunes from my L3000s.
post #123 of 144
Yeah, I feel very similar about books - I have to feel the paper, to keep the book in my hands to really enjoy it. My just 3 years younger cousin doesn't understands what do i find in that antiquity where there are eBooks. but I just can't...

On the other hand, from last 20 CD I lately bought, only one or two I bought actually in store. The rest came from online retailers - better prices, better availability.

Another thing is - we can't rely solely on downloads - we're into uncompressed music, aren't we, and it's heavy. Sooner or later there will be some higher rez format replacing CD's PCM, and here we go again - it may be too inconvenient to download it, when you can get a "data" CD or whatever it be, and upload it to the music server. This way you can have a good talk in the store, and the artwork...
post #124 of 144
Thanks for the kind words fellas. It is nice to know others feel the same way I do about music.
post #125 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by 325xi
On the other hand, from last 20 CD I lately bought, only one or two I bought actually in store. The rest came from online retailers - better prices, better availability.

Another thing is - we can't rely solely on downloads - we're into uncompressed music, aren't we, and it's heavy. Sooner or later there will be some higher rez format replacing CD's PCM, and here we go again - it may be too inconvenient to download it, when you can get a "data" CD or whatever it be, and upload it to the music server. ...
Well, I've been relying solely on downloads for quite some time now, 100% lossless Flac files, and I don't see why this can't be the way it will remain for me.

I have literally thousands of CD's, and I have cherished some of their jackets, artwork, but truth-be-told, after a couple months, I don't need to keep touching the artwork. In fact, it's been such a relief, boxing up all my CD's and putting them away from my listening room after copying them on my PC.

The other HUGE factor is the retail price of CD's these days. They're going for around $16.99-17.99 plus tax at a local store, and frankly, the vast majority of albums these days have perhaps a couple of songs of merit, if at all. The greed of recording companies knows no bounds; it costs them less to produce a CD than a tape!, yet the price keeps being hiked up.

As far as "high-res" downloads, I wouldn't hold my breath. SACD, DVD-A downloads simply will not happen due to record companies' DRM paranoia. Just look at how many websites actually offer simple "redbook" quality lossless downloads TODAY. I can only count one (and a half..).

If you really 'need' to listen to SACD/DVD-A, the only way for the forseeable future (say 20-30 yrs), is to buy an universal SACD/DVD-A/CD player with digital input. Play the handful of SACD/DVD-A's you own on the tray and play your redbook music via the digital input from the PC.
post #126 of 144
I'm 26, and here is my 2p.

I too like to have actual CDs - sometimes. For really good albums, the ones I want to listen to from start to finish, then yes, it had to be CD. Having said that, I usually rip to FLAC and then put the CD away, only occasionally getting it out to admire the artwork, read the booklet etc. I suppose it comes down to a lack of time and space.

IMHO is the iPod is one of the greatest inventions of the past 20 years. The sound is excellent, and it allows you to claw back those wasted hours of the day. It's not the same as relaxing with a CD on in a comfy chair (not the comfy chair!) but it's better than nothing. Canalphones can even turn a long car journey or daily commute into a practically hifi listening environment.

I buy music online too, in lossless format only. Mostly from allofmp3.com in FLAC. The advantage of this is that a lot of modern albums are, frankly, crap. One or two good tracks by one-hit-wonder bands who have become victims of the loudness wars. So, for me it's just not worth ponying up for the CD.

Having all my music available is nice too. Maybe I'm a manic depressive*, but I like being able to pick something to suit my mood instantly, and change my mind if I want to. I do listen to whole albums, but sometimes it's nice to have "mix tapes" or spend some time exploring an artist by comparing songs recorded at different times, with different people and on different albums.

But of course, it is nice to have a real "hifi experience" once in a while!

*Damn it, you know I think I am. Well, it's not that bad really.
post #127 of 144
I don't really agree with LFF's argument that the way in which music is purchased really affects one's ability to appreciate it. The way one buys music primarily affects the consumerist experience associated with buying an album, holding the cd, and looking at the artwork and liner notes, but I think that particular enjoyment is actually very short-lived compared to the musical experience of listening to the album. Holding sound quality constant (just for the moment), I don't think it is valid to say that the person who buys an album over the internet and then listens to it a hundred times over the course of a few years has had any less of an experience than the person who bought the same album and now has the CD in his collection, artwork and all. When I think of the great music I have listened to in the last thirty years, what I enjoyed and remember was the music. I don't feel any differently about music that I bought at a store than I do about music I downloaded...sorry. I also think that the computer has allowed for the cheaper dissemination of music, making it accessible to a much wider audience than in the past, which is a good thing.
post #128 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by minimus
I don't really agree with LFF's argument that the way in which music is purchased really affects one's ability to appreciate it. The way one buys music primarily affects the consumerist experience associated with buying an album, holding the cd, and looking at the artwork and liner notes, but I think that particular enjoyment is actually very short-lived compared to the musical experience of listening to the album. Holding sound quality constant (just for the moment), I don't think it is valid to say that the person who buys an album over the internet and then listens to it a hundred times over the course of a few years has had any less of an experience than the person who bought the same album and now has the CD in his collection, artwork and all. When I think of the great music I have listened to in the last thirty years, what I enjoyed and remember was the music. I don't feel any differently about music that I bought at a store than I do about music I downloaded...sorry. I also think that the computer has allowed for the cheaper dissemination of music, making it accessible to a much wider audience than in the past, which is a good thing.
Perfectly fine to disagree.

It really wasn't an arguement, more like an opinion.

Anyway, I agree with your point that the computer has allowed for the cheaper dissemination of music which in turn has made music accessible to a much wider audience. I myself have been introduced to fantastic music via the internet. I listened to it and enjoyed it immensely. Afterwards, needless to say, I go out and buy the album. Some albums have taken a while to track down but I think the experience of having the compelte package as intended is part of my musical experience. Obviously there are those whose enjoyment of music makes no difference as to the artwork or packaging, but my thoughts were mainly aimed at those typical listeners who just download and listen to the music and then discard it and move along - your typical Joe Itunes. I just feel there is something special in having the physical package along with the music, not to mention I love the ability to rip and encode my music in any damn format I want.

Like I mentioned before, allowing the music to come in a non-physical medium has caused, IMHO, a downfall in the quality of recorded, mastered and remastered music since companies know the music will most likely end up being played on an iPod or laptop than on your traditional mid-fi or hi-fi set. This downfall then comes at the expense of convinience. To me, this current trend in technology and the market trend is walking a fine line between convinience, quality and the complete experience. Those of us who have opened an orginal LP or CD like Sgt. Pepper or Dark Side of The Moon know how special it is to do so. It might be short lived for a couple of people, but for most, like myself and countless other people I know, it is something you rarely forget. Just my opinion.
post #129 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon L
Well, I've been relying solely on downloads for quite some time now, 100% lossless Flac files, and I don't see why this can't be the way it will remain for me.

I have literally thousands of CD's, and I have cherished some of their jackets, artwork, but truth-be-told, after a couple months, I don't need to keep touching the artwork. In fact, it's been such a relief, boxing up all my CD's and putting them away from my listening room after copying them on my PC.

The other HUGE factor is the retail price of CD's these days. They're going for around $16.99-17.99 plus tax at a local store, and frankly, the vast majority of albums these days have perhaps a couple of songs of merit, if at all. The greed of recording companies knows no bounds; it costs them less to produce a CD than a tape!, yet the price keeps being hiked up.

As far as "high-res" downloads, I wouldn't hold my breath. SACD, DVD-A downloads simply will not happen due to record companies' DRM paranoia. Just look at how many websites actually offer simple "redbook" quality lossless downloads TODAY. I can only count one (and a half..).
I lost you, Jon. You say you rely solely on downloads and then say you know just one-n-half site that actually offer them. What am I getting wrong?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon L
If you really 'need' to listen to SACD/DVD-A, the only way for the forseeable future (say 20-30 yrs), is to buy an universal SACD/DVD-A/CD player with digital input. Play the handful of SACD/DVD-A's you own on the tray and play your redbook music via the digital input from the PC.
I didn't mean SACD or DVD-A, and I'm glad I didn't invest into that kind of player. Those standards were developed with standalone players in mind. When computer is your source you're bound only by software available, so I see no reason for some studio not to offer an option to download their "non-standard" 24/96 or 24/192 edition of album, which also available on standard redbook CD. That would be few GBs. And I'd appreciate an option to get it burned on a regular DVD-R.
post #130 of 144
I like the tactile/visual/social experience of physical media, but even if I didn't, a good CDP playing redbook just always sounds better to me. This could be because I have not heard a "good enough" computer-based transport, but given some of the others' experiences, it seems I'm not alone. Which leads me to the conclusion that someone is missing something or looking in the wrong place. Everyone is focused on making sure the digital is bit-perfect and the jitter is the lowest possible. There's gotta be more to it than jitter. Why would a cheap DVD player playing a redbook disc into a lavry via optical sound better to me than the same wav file played through the stereophile-approved (i.e. ~250ps jitter) AEX? (you'll just have to trust me that everything was ripped/setup properly/optimally) If it's just bits and jitter, the AEX should've sounded better, or at least sounded the same. (I have also tried a number of other ways of getting the digital out of my computer and into the DAC, but I'm only refering to the AEX because it sounded best and has been measured).

EAC secure rip to lossless/wav, check. bit-perfect, check. low jitter, check. what else is causing a CD transport to sound better?

mjb
post #131 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by mjb
I like the tactile/visual/social experience of physical media, but even if I didn't, a good CDP playing redbook just always sounds better to me. This could be because I have not heard a "good enough" computer-based transport, but given some of the others' experiences, it seems I'm not alone. Which leads me to the conclusion that someone is missing something or looking in the wrong place. Everyone is focused on making sure the digital is bit-perfect and the jitter is the lowest possible. There's gotta be more to it than jitter. Why would a cheap DVD player playing a redbook disc into a lavry via optical sound better to me than the same wav file played through the stereophile-approved (i.e. ~250ps jitter) AEX? (you'll just have to trust me that everything was ripped/setup properly/optimally) If it's just bits and jitter, the AEX should've sounded better, or at least sounded the same. (I have also tried a number of other ways of getting the digital out of my computer and into the DAC, but I'm only refering to the AEX because it sounded best and has been measured).

EAC secure rip to lossless/wav, check. bit-perfect, check. low jitter, check. what else is causing a CD transport to sound better?

mjb
It's as simple as it gets. Less jitter doesn't mean better sound, it means just being closer to the original recording, as mastering engineer heard it. Why did you assume it automatically means better sound for everyone, considering how tastes vary, and how different system's sonic signatures can be?
Your cheap DVD player may affect the original signal in many ways, for example jitter applied to particular frequency ranges can produce feeling of smoother sound for voice or some kinds of instruments, while you, in fact, just loose details in added noise. And that's just one example.
post #132 of 144
They are no published measurements which show a hardrive having lower jitter than a CDP. I use a computer purely for the convenience but I have also taken apart hard drives. The HD disc is low on mass/ spinning inertia vs a CD.
post #133 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by mjb
EAC secure rip to lossless/wav, check. bit-perfect, check. low jitter, check. what else is causing a CD transport to sound better?
Good question. EAC can, in theory, do a better job of reading the CD because it can have multiple attempts, where as a CD player only gets one. So, less error there. Compared to a cheap CD player, jitter will be less. The bit-perfect output should, if configured correctly, be an exact copy of what was on the CD.

So, what could cause you like prefer the CD player? Maybe read errors or jitter are smoothing the sound out a tad, or altering it in some way? Seems unlikely you would prefer that. PC noise? Can't really comment, of course...

Cheap CD transports don't upsample or do anything fancy. So what could it be? A mystery indeed.
post #134 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by regal
They are no published measurements which show a hardrive having lower jitter than a CDP. I use a computer purely for the convenience but I have also taken apart hard drives. The HD disc is low on mass/ spinning inertia vs a CD.
Hard drives introduce no jitter as they do not stream data like a CDP does. A HDD reads a chunk of data into memory where it is decoded. It reads it perfectly with zero errors.

Also, HDDs are not low[er] on mass than CDs. HDDs use metal discs, which are heavier than CDs. Not that it matters.
post #135 of 144
Quote:
Originally Posted by 325xi
It's as simple as it gets. Less jitter doesn't mean better sound, it means just being closer to the original recording, as mastering engineer heard it. Why did you assume it automatically means better sound for everyone, considering how tastes vary, and how different system's sonic signatures can be?
Your cheap DVD player may affect the original signal in many ways, for example jitter applied to particular frequency ranges can produce feeling of smoother sound for voice or some kinds of instruments, while you, in fact, just loose details in added noise. And that's just one example.
I assumed that less jitter equals better sound because I've never, not once, read someone saying they did not mind jitter or that they wanted more jitter. I was also only referring to a number of people who claim their CDP transport sounds better to them than their computer as transport. I didn't say "everyone", I said "others", meaning those people who have written that sentiment.

I'm not arguing CDP as transport sounds better for everyone, I'm merely wondering why it does not sound better for me, or the others who are maintaining the same thing. I think you make an excellent point, and correct me if I'm wrong, but that what we might think as a "bad" thing (jitter, error correction, sample rate conversion, etc) may actually be making me (or us) like the sound _better_. Very interesting...

mjb
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