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24-bit 96kHz through dbPowerAMP

Discussion in 'Sound Science' started by Vargulf, Jul 25, 2019.
  1. Vargulf

    Can anyone advise me if I would notice any difference in audio quality if I re-ripped my flac files to 24-bit/96kHz? As the attached shows it looks when I ripped to FLAC I possible did so in 16-bit/44.1kHz? Would this truly make a difference with audio quality? I'm noticing a diminished soundscape using the AQ DAC over my previous FiiO E10.

    I'm currently playing the FLAC files through poweramp on a Samsung S7 connected through USB to AQ Dragonfly Red with Shure SE 535 IEMs.

    Thanks all.
  2. castleofargh Contributor
    short answer: probably no audible benefit and a lot of wasted storage space.

    practical answer: you should try with a few songs and decide if you feel better using hires.
  3. bigshot
    It's the realm of a shrink, not an audiologist!

    And what are you proposing to rip? If they are CDs, you'd just be packing the file with a whole bunch of zeros that mean nothing. CDs are 16/44.1.
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2019
  4. Vargulf
    Yeah understood - and nearly all my music was from cd. I just didn't understand compression and wanted to check if I could have made a slip up with the file rip that was now the weakness of my setup.

    Thanks for confirming for me. I believe it's the sound the DAC is bringing that I'm unhappy with but I'll try a few different files and headphones to make sure.
  5. bigshot
    It's probably your bias preferring one DAC over the other one, or perhaps the line level from one DAC is a little louder than the other. Here in Sound Science we don't start guessing what is causing a difference until we verify that there actually is a difference using a level matched, direct A/B switched blind comparison. I would bet if you did that, there would be no difference at all.
  6. SoundChoice
    Forgive me for slightly hijacking, but if I have the CD and/or FLAC file, what software (Win or Linux) would I use to up-convert or re-rip to 24-bit/96 kHz or even AIFF 32bit / 384kHz or DSD256? I'm interested in testing to see if I can hear a difference and if it's worth up-converting. Thank you.
  7. Killcomic
    No, upconverting does nothing. It's like taking a colour photograph of a black and white picture. Converting to a higher definition format will not add any extra information.
    SoundChoice likes this.
  8. Vargulf
    Thanks for the honest non-snippy responses and excuse my ignorance. So 24 bit 96kHz is only for ripping from vinyl or other high res sources?
    It's interesting because I hear something other than line level difference (though it only really comes through to me as listener fatigue). Guess I'll keep experimenting.
  9. castleofargh Contributor
    placing a 16/44 signal into a bigger box has no benefit for the signal itself as we can't create resolution out of nowhere. you're correct about that, but the DAC could handle a different resolution differently. be it because that DAC works on a specific sample rate, or because it's some NOS weirdness so more likely than not, the low sample rate signals will suck(aliasing or treble roll off, usually both). if you send an oversampled signal to that type of device, you could end up with a better fidelity. of course it then begs the question, "why have a NOS DAC in the first place?".

    I believe that those problems can and will reach audibility in some cases, but for what I consider a competently designed DAC, oversampling the signal beforehand shouldn't have much of a benefit, and might in some case make things worst objectively. although I personally can't be bothered by this because I expect the changes to occur at levels and frequencies I don't care about, and because I never was into exotic DAC designs that required special care, as I consider most of them faulty

    be careful here. vinyl is an analog source, so it makes sense to record it at higher resolution to optimize the digital capture of the signal(even more so if we plan to apply some denoiser or other DSPs in post processing). just like in a studios they're going to record a band at really high resolution, work on the record and then make a release at CD resolution, 24/96, or whatever the client asked for. that's when you capture an analog signal. but if you rip a CD, it's already digital content at 16/44. the highest fidelity rip you can ever get from it is the exact 16/44 replica. anything else will objectively have lower resolution as it won't be as close to the CD reference.

    several audio players will offer some re-sampling options or will let you add it through VST, and pretty much any ripping tool will have that too. you can look up SoX(Sound eXchange) that will have it all and is usually praised for the quality of the conversions.I use SoX in foobar mainly to create test files and to down convert the few hires albums. it's multi platform, exists in many forms that can be integrated to several audio players.
    in non free solution, I've read HQplayer mentioned many times, it apparently has many settings to fool around with. but again I never cared much myself so you'll have to ask people who have hand on experience with that for more in depth feedback.
  10. bigshot
    24/96 is for recording in a studio where they may need to manipulate the track in a mix. It offers no benefit for normal playback over 16/44.1. It sounds exactly the same.
  11. old tech
    Vinyl is hardly a hi res source, 16/44 is higher res than vinyl. However as others have pointed out, you want to needle drop at 24/96 for other reasons.
  12. bigshot
    I don’t think there’s any reason to capture LPs at greater than 16/44.1. There’s enough headroom without it. But it’s ok if someone just wants to for purely theoretical reasons.

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