Originally Posted by ratinox
Originally Posted by frankrondaniel
decent number of DSD albums in a variety of genres.
Save your money. The Audio Engineering Society demonstrated that human beings cannot distinguish between SACD (DSD) and CD-DA (16/44.1 PCM) in double-blind trials unless the volume is raised enough to make the CD-DA noise floor audible. There's no point to paying extra for DSD files unless you routinely listen to music at deafening volume levels.
DSD: DX50's new FOTM.
Originally Posted by ratinox
Originally Posted by musicheaven
I would not apply the rule across the board without consulting your ears in the process first. Your ears are the best judge for that.
Well, no, they're not. Rather, your ears are, but your brain isn't. This is why the AES performed 554 double-blind trials with a variety of listeners. Tested listeners correctly identified the SACD source 49.8% of the time. Short version: they guessed.
If you genuinely can tell the difference in double-blind trials then please contact the AES. They would love to study you.
As for me... I'm using a Sansa Clip Zip with Rockbox more than my DX50. The Clip simply works better.
You have to keep in mind the methodology of the tests as well as what people in the real world do. The very paper
you're referring to, and isn't mentioned in the Wikipedia entry for SACD, also stated*:
Though our tests failed to substantiate the claimed ad-
vantages of high-resolution encoding for two-channel au-
dio, one trend became obvious very quickly and held up
throughout our testing: virtually all of the SACD and
DVD-A recordings sounded better than most CDs—
sometimes much better. Had we not “degraded” the sound
to CD quality and blind-tested for audible differences, we
would have been tempted to ascribe this sonic superiority
to the recording processes used to make them.
This is what people in the real world will do: they'll compare an album on a CD to the same album on a SACD (or even the CD layer on the SACD).
Here's what they did in the tests*:
In words, they took a SACD/DVD-A disc player and down-sampled its audio to 16-bit/44.1 kHz in order to represent their "CD-equivalent" audio. Most people in the real world won't do that when comparing the two.
This same thing happens with high-definition audio; there's no audible difference between 16/44 and 24/96+ formats per se in test conditions, but that's not what happens in the real world.
In the real world you can have different masters for a specified form of media. The master for a SACD can be different from that of a CD; the master of a 24/96 file can be different from a 16/44 one. It is for these reasons that people buy "higher-resolution" audio formats.
As for me, I could definitely tell a difference between the SACD DSD layer and the CD PCM layer for this album with this SACD player with a STAX SRS-2170; the DSD layer sounded much more natural and the soundstage was much more spacious.
Likewise, I can hear a difference between a 24/88 HD master and a 16/44 CD one (yes, this should be in the Sound Science section on Head-Fi).
ABX Foobar2000 Test Results (Click to show)
foo_abx 1.3.4 report
File A: D:\Users\Michael\Music\My HDTracks Music\Seal\Best 1991 2004\1-Crazy.flac
File B: D:\Users\Michael\Music\Seal\Seal\03 Crazy.flac
17:18:05 : Test started.
17:18:57 : 01/01 50.0%
17:19:12 : 01/02 75.0%
17:19:26 : 02/03 50.0%
17:19:43 : 03/04 31.3%
17:19:56 : 04/05 18.8%
17:20:18 : 05/06 10.9%
17:20:32 : 06/07 6.3%
17:20:44 : 07/08 3.5%
17:20:53 : 08/09 2.0%
17:21:00 : 09/10 1.1%
17:21:04 : 10/11 0.6%
17:21:09 : 11/12 0.3%
17:21:14 : 12/13 0.2%
17:21:20 : 13/14 0.1%
17:21:27 : 14/15 0.0%
17:21:34 : 15/16 0.0%
17:21:39 : 16/17 0.0%
17:21:51 : 17/18 0.0%
17:21:56 : 18/19 0.0%
17:22:01 : 19/20 0.0%
17:22:07 : 20/21 0.0%
17:22:11 : 21/22 0.0%
17:22:17 : 22/23 0.0%
17:22:34 : 23/24 0.0%
17:22:40 : 24/25 0.0%
17:22:46 : 25/26 0.0%
17:22:55 : 26/27 0.0%
17:23:01 : Test finished.
Total: 26/27 (0.0%)
The DX50 can support DSD playback now. That's great news! That means the DSD files I have can be natively played back on a device and I don't have to down-sample it to 16/44. I don't even know if standard music converters can convert DSD to PCM.
*Meyer, E. B., & Moran, D. R. (2007, September 15). Audibility of a CD-Standard A/D/A Loop Inserted into High-Resolution Audio Playback. J. Audio Engineering Society
, 55 (9), pp. 775-779.Edited by miceblue - 1/29/14 at 3:02am