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Blu-ray Pure Audio vs. CD (Loudness war)

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 

I purchased the anniversary release of Soundgarden's Superunknown album. This release included a hi-res version of the album on Blu-ray Pure Audio. I opened a few songs in Audacity to view the waveform. I was disappointed to find out that this release has fallen victim to the loudness war. I compared some of the tracks to an older "A-Sides" album by Soundgarden. This is basically a "greatest hits" CD.

 

I suppose the point of this post is that, despite being marketed as an audiophile product, the Blu-ray Pure Audio, despite any promise it may have, is still suspect, in my opinion. 

 

You can see the results for yourself:

 

Blu-ray Pure Audio:

 

 

 

CD:

 

post #2 of 24

Well that's upsetting.

post #3 of 24

Hi, something I've noticed looking at my music files is that tracks that are vocal centric does not look compressed.  It doesn't seem so black and white.  On the same album, vocal solo is uncompressed, and tracks that is not all vocal focused looks to be compressed.  


Edited by SilverEars - 7/13/14 at 4:50pm
post #4 of 24

just send it back asking for a refund. reason "dem mofos ruined the album".

 

@SilverEars I believe that it's just because voices have a huge dynamic variation, so while being compressed, they might still retain some dynamic(but maybe you're right and they don't use the same level of compression). I doubt that a lot of albums let the voices uncompressed(or autotune free).

post #5 of 24

I checked some files, and the albums that I like to listen to are less compressed than the ones that doesn't sound so musical or detailed.  I'm curious if the HD800 hates compressed tracks, and lots of pop I have is compressed and it sounds like crap because of that reason?  I've been having trouble with certain tracks with the HD800 and they are usually electronica or pop, and they show heavy compression.  Even Daft Punk RAM(this is very popular amongst audiophiles).  That leads me to believe electronica in general are compressed.  Do you guys have electronica that are not compressed?


Edited by SilverEars - 7/13/14 at 5:46pm
post #6 of 24
Thread Starter 

@SilverEars You're probably correct that it isn't entirely black and white. For example, I also have the Bob Marley: Legend album on Blu-ray Pure Audio and it doesn't suffer from the poor mastering found in the Soundgarden album (See the image below). Every track from the Soundgarden album had a similarly compressed waveform as in my original post. The Bob Marley album on the other hand appeared to be mastered pretty well, only cutting off a few points of the waveform. 

 

Unfortunately, what this does mean is that, even though this format is marketed as an audiophile product, it doesn't live up to this hype, at least not for the time being. I was hopeful that this format would pan out. With a little effort it had the ability to offer the best of both worlds when it came to quality and convenience as the songs can be ripped and imported into a music manager app (such as iTunes), while at the same time offering a physical disc, often with a multichannel mix that can be used in a home theater. If the record companies are simply going to stick with their substandard ways of mastering rather than using this format to its fullest potential, what's the point?

 

 

Redemption Song:

 

post #7 of 24

Holy Cow!!  I never thought of checking my files with Audacity until you introduced it.  My most favorite and realistic, detailed, and clear sounding tracks, the Maratz Audiophile tracks have the least amount of compressions.  :D  We need to start a thread of uncompressed music tracks!!  Thanks for introducing it.

 

 


Edited by SilverEars - 7/13/14 at 8:17pm
post #8 of 24

Check out my favorite album Miles Davis "Kind of Blue" SACD!!!

 

Created with GIMP

 

 

post #9 of 24
Thread Starter 

No problem! 

 

It's a great tool in many ways. 

 

It's amazing how quality mastering can really add to the listening enjoyment!

 

Kind regards,

 

Andrew

post #10 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by AndrewZander View Post
 

@SilverEars You're probably correct that it isn't entirely black and white. For example, I also have the Bob Marley: Legend album on Blu-ray Pure Audio and it doesn't suffer from the poor mastering found in the Soundgarden album (See the image below). Every track from the Soundgarden album had a similarly compressed waveform as in my original post. The Bob Marley album on the other hand appeared to be mastered pretty well, only cutting off a few points of the waveform. 

 

Unfortunately, what this does mean is that, even though this format is marketed as an audiophile product, it doesn't live up to this hype, at least not for the time being. I was hopeful that this format would pan out. With a little effort it had the ability to offer the best of both worlds when it came to quality and convenience as the songs can be ripped and imported into a music manager app (such as iTunes), while at the same time offering a physical disc, often with a multichannel mix that can be used in a home theater. If the record companies are simply going to stick with their substandard ways of mastering rather than using this format to its fullest potential, what's the point?

I'm wondering if this compression is cutting off the peaks and resulting in distortion and causing harsh trebles with more accurate gear?  Some headphones are more subtle with and less harsh with treble frequencies that can push harshness, and they can help you put up with them. I know the HD800 can be very unforgiving.  I wondering if it cuts off causing distortion and these harsh frequencies and cause fitigue?  


Edited by SilverEars - 7/13/14 at 8:33pm
post #11 of 24

depending on the compression settings, cutting the edges isn't too different in the resulting signal. joe bloggs made me realize that there are compression VST/DSP available for foobar some times ago. and I actually used it to compress the voices in the 3khz(always those 3khz ^_^) for some songs while going to mp3. the result was actually less harshness with my settings.

 

I believe that the 2 main things you feel are that too much compression at some point just doesn't sound like it should anymore. and the other is that with high level compressions, the volume is almost always at the same level. while dynamic music may go louder for a few instants, but will be overall  with a lot of quieter parts. I don't know enough about our ears to make a claim, but maybe those changes could overall lead in less fatigue after an hour or 2 compared to a constant barrage of sound.

post #12 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by SilverEars View Post That leads me to believe electronica in general are compressed.  Do you guys have electronica that are not compressed?

Chicane's album "Giants" isn't too compressed compared to most electronic music, though there's a rather depressing amount of clipping on some tracks.

post #13 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjl View Post
 

Chicane's album "Giants" isn't too compressed compared to most electronic music, though there's a rather depressing amount of clipping on some tracks.

 

compression is so overhyped.  clipping is NEVER excusable.  

post #14 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by ferday View Post
 

 

compression is so overhyped.  clipping is NEVER excusable.  

Both are problematic, in my opinion, and the two frequently go together.

post #15 of 24

Compression is a useful tool in the hands of a skillful engineer. Clipping is a mistake made by a bad one.

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