I am sorry if this has been covered to death but I really need some specific advice.
I`ve recently purchased HD800s, and a new DAC, and am in audiorgasmic-ness, as expected. And also, like I expected, I`ve realized the need to delete a lot of my ripped/downloaded audio. And so I went to the used CD shops and picked up about 30 essential albums and began ripping. And I am really dissatisfied with the spottiness of the quality of what resulted. The gear:
Macbook Pro Retina 13, using XLD or MAX to create FLAC files with very little compression. Then, the same Macbook Pro, with Amarra (EQ off) or TEAC`s HR Player, to an ADL USB cable, to TEAC dual-dac DAC, to ALO Continental V2 portable tube amp and then the Sennheisers. Sometimes I play the Senns straight from the DAC.
Most of the recordings sound utterly magical but the occasional bass line distorts. This is especially noticeable in a Goldie album, where the bass, that deep, Drum and Bass bass, is clearly distorting on some, but not all, tracks. But it also rears its horror-head on other artists`s albums as well, and not just bass-heavy genres. Being of old-school audio and a longtime amateur musician, to me it sounds simply like the recording levels were too high, outpacing the recording medium. But of course one can`t set the levels in the ripping applications . . .
This is not a new problem for me. Years ago when I started ripping CDs in iTunes, Apple Lossless left me disappointed for the same reason, and I ended up doing most of it in 320 mp3. In fact, this past weekend I downloaded some mp3 versions of my problematic rips to compare and I was doubly disappointed: while the separation and dynamic range were noticeably less impressive than the FLAC versions, the mp3s had none of that hideous, crumbling bass distortion. And the high-res downloads sound fine too.
So the problem must be my ripping.
Any suggestions? Anyone have similar problems? Any recommended solutions ? 320 mp3 sounds wonderful on the HD800s, until one compares with lossless. . .
Should I switch to WAV or aiff?
Need help !
Thanks in advance,