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post #91 of 255
The Philips player I have outputs true 5:1 SACD. It doesn't matter though, because the sound quality is indistinguishable from redbook.

You're worrying about all the wrong things, bf2008.

See ya
Steve
post #92 of 255
Quote:
Originally Posted by xenithon View Post
From my knowledge and understanding, this is not correct. Some output full resolution in multichannel (generally the higher end players), some downsample (generally the lower end players).
Hi. I think none of the players in the market output full resolution analogue to avoid people taking copies of these cds. This is what wikipedia says too. 5.1 audio only leaves through encrypted HDMI.

Quote:
Originally Posted by xenithon View Post
Yes, because it does NOT take the 5.1 channel and downmix to 2-channel. It reads the stereo layer of SACD discs. If you put in a multichannel only SACD, it will not play - at most it will play the stereo CD layer.
Some sacd discs have stereo dsd, some 5.1 dsd and some also a cd layer. Some have all three too. You think then that the multichannel sacd players only read the 5.1 and they are not capable of reading the stereo one? I guess there must be an option where you choose which layer to read. But anyway, as I said in many occasions, I doubts there's any noticeable difference between the stereo sacd and the stereo cd. Tell us what you think when you go to the shops to audition some players, or when you actually get them.
post #93 of 255
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigshot View Post
The Philips player I have outputs true 5:1 SACD. It doesn't matter though, because the sound quality is indistinguishable from redbook.

You're worrying about all the wrong things, bf2008.

See ya
Steve
Through analogue or hdmi? Can you explain more about your system and how it works?
post #94 of 255
Hi xenithon. You may be interested in reading about this before investing money in a sacd player. Hydrogenaudio Forums > Double-blind test of SACD and DVD-A vs. Redbook 16/44 in JAES Septembe
post #95 of 255
Quote:
Originally Posted by bf2008 View Post
Hi xenithon. You may be interested in reading about this before investing money in a sacd player. Hydrogenaudio Forums > Double-blind test of SACD and DVD-A vs. Redbook 16/44 in JAES Septembe
It is actually worth joining the AES to read the whole text of this paper and a few others that discuss some interesting properly controlled blinds tests.

There is a cadre of audio engineer types who are very critical of DSD (SACD) due to its theoretical high levels of ultrasonic noise and inadequate data capacity and inefficiency. The ARA which includes folks like Bob Stuart, Stanley Lipsh1tz and Malcolm Hawksford have a few papers out trashing DSD (SACD) and praising PCM. For the ARA 20 bits and 48K sampling is an absolute minimum.

Their arguments may have some technical merit, hard for me to judge, however the only time a serious long term (110 subjects) set of blind listening tests has been performed only 4 subjects were even able to tell the difference between PCM and DSD (Blech and Yang, 2004).
post #96 of 255
Quote:
Originally Posted by bf2008 View Post
Through analogue or hdmi? Can you explain more about your system and how it works?
Through analogue. The hobbling of the SACD format is in the digital output, not the analogue.

Full resolution SACD output in my player is only available from the analogue outputs- either 2.0 or 5.1. The digital optical output only does CD quality sound and the various 5:1 schemes found on video DVDs (Dolby 5:1, DTS).

See ya
Steve
post #97 of 255
Quote:
Originally Posted by bf2008 View Post
Hi. I think none of the players in the market output full resolution analogue to avoid people taking copies of these cds. This is what wikipedia says too. 5.1 audio only leaves through encrypted HDMI.



Some sacd discs have stereo dsd, some 5.1 dsd and some also a cd layer. Some have all three too. You think then that the multichannel sacd players only read the 5.1 and they are not capable of reading the stereo one? I guess there must be an option where you choose which layer to read. But anyway, as I said in many occasions, I doubts there's any noticeable difference between the stereo sacd and the stereo cd. Tell us what you think when you go to the shops to audition some players, or when you actually get them.
Thanks to Xenithon to making a good point! I confess I rushed to check out those discs I already have in my amazon.com wish list against the sa-cd.net database. I was relieved to see they all have either both Stereo and Multichannel or Stereo only SACD layer. Further, it was not uncommon for reviewers there to prefer Stereo SACD layer over the Multichannel one. I indulged in some browsing - wow, even more of my favorite artists are available on SACD!.. Sure, some of those discs are pricey, $30 and up, but many are under $20. I saw only one disc that was Multichannel only (according to the database entry), I was one of those movie scores recorded by E.Kunzel & Cincinnati Pops. You guys know any more Mutichannel-only SACDs?..

So am sticking with my choice, Marantz SA8001. My budget is limited yet I want to enjoy high quality, realistic, non-fatiguing music. Looks like I can achieve this with headphones but not with speakers. Those surround speaker sets that sell for a few hundred bucks do not sound good to me playing music - movies fine, but not music. I understand I would have to spend several thousand $$ for speakers only - well, at least a couple grand, for a 5.1 speaker set. Maybe later...

bf2008, yes indeed, you and I seem to have different objectives (don't know about tastes ). Nice homework on all things SACD, BTW!.. If I understand right, you want a versatile setup that will play all disc formats, and if I remember right from another thread here, you were also wanting to make it a part of your blu ray setup, no?.. Sorry if I'm mixing it up. What I want at this point is a good source, iPod being all I have now (recharging sucks...). I seriously considered the computer-DAC way, but it appears that won't be cheaper, at the SQ level I am seeking, and I won't be able to play SACDs. I think I can do w/o 5.1 capacity for now, as well as w/o DVD-audio. But I do want my player to be something special. Silly, I know, but perhaps if we accept that quality of music reproduction can be important (not just "the content"), perhaps the looks and feel can also matter? I want something nice to look at and feel when I come from work and find time to listen to some music. It appears, I'll get this with the Marantz SA8001.

I don't know how about your area, I live in Washington, DC suburbs and could not find a place where one could check out higher end HPs, or even a dedicated SACD player. Sure, many places "will order for you"... The good news is, I believe in many cases we can make a reasonable judgement even without first-hand experience.
Anyway, I promise I'll post my impressions once I get the player. Too bad a really meaningful comparison will have to wait still longer - until I add the amp, sometime these Holidays. One of the (secondary) reasons for my choice of the SA8001 player is that it reportedly has an unusually decent HP amp built-in. Since really I enjoy my K701s right out of iPod now, I expect SA8001 alone should be fine for a while.
post #98 of 255
For two channel an SACD player is no better than a CD player. The 5:1 mix is the only advantage the format has... and surround sound is a pain in the rear to keep adjusted properly.

See ya
Steve
post #99 of 255
Thread Starter 
This thread has gone in interesting directions. It seems that what people are saying is that lots of the techno stuff my be BS. The mind plays lots of tricks and many of the listeners assume the "wow" factor from price, appearance and herd instinct, rather than from real SQ differences. I've often felt that about wine aficionados---some of whom might think piss tasted good if it came out of the proper bottle.
post #100 of 255
I bought an SACD player and did a test with a DSD hybrid disc. I lined up the track in my SACD player and a CD player, balanced the line levels and tried to hear a difference between the two. I couldn't, and a friend of mine who is a sound mixer couldn't either.

I heard lots of differences between SACD and regular CD releases, but they were all due to mastering differences, not sound quality of the format itself. If I wanted current recordings with 5:1 sound mixes, SACD would be great. But my preference is for back catalog from the 70s and earlier. SACD offers nothing to me.

See ya
Steve
post #101 of 255
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spunky8 View Post
This thread has gone in interesting directions. It seems that what people are saying is that lots of the techno stuff my be BS. The mind plays lots of tricks and many of the listeners assume the "wow" factor from price, appearance and herd instinct, rather than from real SQ differences. I've often felt that about wine aficionados---some of whom might think piss tasted good if it came out of the proper bottle.
One thing we can say for sure, it doesn't make a difference for Steve's ears . (Steve, please don't take offense! This has been remarkably civil, while disagreed, thread, and I don't want to ruin it with my clumsy English...)

I guess everyone will have to figure for him/herself whether or not they will benefit from SACD vs Redbook, from a better DAC, and so on. So I'm not the only one noting parallels with wine world! Diminishing returns, that's for sure one thing in common. Also, both audiophiles and oenophiles can be fooled. Crowd and snob effects, another common thing. And still, both with wine and audio, some differences are very real. Some companies make very good and distinct products. Mouton Rothschild in wine, Rega players, Sennheiser HPs in audio...

bf2008, thanks for the link to the JAES abstract discussion. I'll check tomorrow, we might have the journal in our library. I read further down on that Hydrogenaudio discussion, though, - and was reminded of other such tests where subjects could not hear/distinguish frequencies above 16,000 Hz...
While it may be not exactly clear how, SACDs, as a group, are clearly perceived sounding better by many people.
post #102 of 255
bf2008 - thanks for the heads up about saving money but I bought my Marantz around 9 month ago

I bought it first and foremost, as a CD player (well, a transport to be exact, to feed my DAC). Its looks, reliability and build quality were the primary deciding factors to get it over a cheaper CD transport.

The SACD was a secondary factor - but to be honest, it is something I really enjoy. I don't want to argue or cause any issues, but suffice to say, I prefer SACD over CD (with the caveat of the limited availability of SACD released, especially of my favored genres of music).

If some blind tests found conclusively that it is not possible for DSD to be better than CD, and if people say it is all placebo - I s'pose I don't really care, as to my ears I thoroughly enjoy the music, and that is what ultimately counts

Cheers,
X

PS. the Marantz's very competent built-in headphone amp was also a great feature which attracted me to the player.
post #103 of 255
Quote:
Originally Posted by xenithon View Post
bf2008 - thanks for the heads up about saving money but I bought my Marantz around 9 month ago

I bought it first and foremost, as a CD player (well, a transport to be exact, to feed my DAC). Its looks, reliability and build quality were the primary deciding factors to get it over a cheaper CD transport.

The SACD was a secondary factor - but to be honest, it is something I really enjoy. I don't want to argue or cause any issues, but suffice to say, I prefer SACD over CD (with the caveat of the limited availability of SACD released, especially of my favored genres of music).

If some blind tests found conclusively that it is not possible for DSD to be better than CD, and if people say it is all placebo - I s'pose I don't really care, as to my ears I thoroughly enjoy the music, and that is what ultimately counts

Cheers,
X

PS. the Marantz's very competent built-in headphone amp was also a great feature which attracted me to the player.
Thanks!!! Sounds like I've been following exactly your logic, liking the Marantz before buying it for all the same reasons. Glad to hear you are pleased with it.
post #104 of 255
Quote:
Originally Posted by Herandu View Post
The DVD laser pickup has a far better resolution than that of a CD laser due to the higher density of the data on a DVD.
I have a number of scratched discs that play quite happily in my DVD players, but won't play on any of my CD players.

Interesting. I have spent a lot of time recently backing up rotting CDs to DAT and so have been testing discs, some of them badly damaged, with all sorts of hardware.
I found that modern DVD players like my Pioneer DVD-575A could play discs which would skip on older players almost perectly which seems to support your position.
However things became less straightforward when comparing the same discs via the analogue and digital outputs.
Here a disc that was damaged to a certain degree would sound fine via anlogue but switching to SPDIF / Optical would just sound like mush when you played back the DAT.
But similarly damaged discs would play fine via the digital outputs on older players with diecast Philips CDM swing-arm mechs like the Studer A727. I concluded that the older players were reading the data with less errors but that the DVD player was better at simply correcting the errors.
post #105 of 255
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Wazowski View Post
One thing we can say for sure, it doesn't make a difference for Steve's ears I guess everyone will have to figure for him/herself whether or not they will benefit from SACD vs Redbook, from a better DAC, and so on.
My ears, my professional sound mixer friend's ears, and the ears of the people tested in that recent blind listening test quoted a few posts back... The bats and dogs that can actually hear a difference can decide for themselves whether an SACD player is a good investment. I guess it all depends on what sorts of music your dog likes to listen to.

See ya
Steve
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