Originally Posted by miceblue
A study of 60 participants with varied listening experiences did a test between even a SACD's DSD layer (which the X5 can eventually decode) and 16/44 resulted in that were that people were guessing between the two formats; no audible distinction could be detected. Chances are you didn't properly volume-match the files and you haven't done an ABX test to confirm your observations. XD
It might be an interesting read: http://www.drewdaniels.com/audible.pdf
44.1/2 (22.05 kHz) is already above human hearing, and by Nyquist sampling rates, a unique solution exists for the analog waveform. A higher sampling rate isn't necessary for what humans can detect.
As suggested in the study, the master of a recording makes much more of a difference, if not all of a difference, between different music mediums and not the bit-depth and sampling rates themselves.
Originally Posted by henwell
24 bits gives you more dynamic range than does 16 bit and with 44kHz sampling you only get 2 sampling points on a 20kHz wave form, with the higher sampling rates you get more sample points with which to reconstruct the waveform so supposedly a more analog sound
The best analysis of this whole debate is included here: http://people.xiph.org/~xiphmont/demo/neil-young.html#toc_intro
The bottom line: BETTER MASTERS
"It's not because of increased sample rate or depth but because the SACD used a higher-quality master. When bounced to a CD-R, the SACD version still sounds as good as the original SACD and better than the CD release because the original audio used to make the SACD was better. Good production and mastering obviously contribute to the final quality of the music."
"Why push back against 24/192? Because it's a solution to a problem that doesn't exist, a business model based on willful ignorance and scamming people. The more that pseudoscience goes unchecked in the world at large, the harder it is for truth to overcome truthiness... even if this is a small and relatively insignificant example."
"For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring."