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FLAC vs 320kbps

Discussion in 'Sound Science' started by olear, Jan 28, 2012.
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  1. Head Injury

    Of course you can. But those lossy files aren't true backups. 2 cents per CD for a bit-perfect backup, that you can listen to too, versus ~0.7 cents per CD just to listen to them.
    That's my point. Cost in either case is negligible. Might as well keep the bit-perfect version.
  2. stv014
    Do you seriously suggest that people can hear the -144 dB noise floor of 24 bit processing (especially of audio that is originally only 16-bit) in a realistic listening situation ?
    That does not matter. Both can be converted to 24-bit (a lossless operation by itself), and the volume can be reduced on the louder one if necessary.
    Yet you conveniently ignored the first part of my post. Attenuating with hardware is not inherently better in any way, both will "degrade" the quality to some extent. But it can be insignificant in practice, and clearly outweighed by the advantage of having correctly level matched signals to compare.
  3. lee730


    But what if you acquire equipment within your lifetime that will make this all clear to you? And you happen to have 20,000 CDs in lossless and a big frown on your face. I came to this realization and was not happy at all. I use to think lossless was a big waste of space and that is completely changed now. I always try to opt for lossless if possible. Then if I want to make mp3 for my lesser devices I still can and at least I have a high quality version of the lossy as well.
  4. kn19h7


    Well, in my case I do consider the costs in both case, while lossless is significantly much more costly (even take out cost of the harddisk ifself, time and effort needed in managing harddisks are annoying.. (as I've said, I've other use for the space...
    True backups don't really seem useful to me..

    Having tried ABX and some other tests, I think I do know the difference between and still don't feel the need to bother about that
    btw I'm not buying equipments to make things sound as bad as possible ==
  5. lee730


    That's not the point for buying equipment to make things sound as bad as possible. Its the complete opposite and is to get the most out of your recordings. One of the cheapest ways to do that is to have the recording unaltered to being with :wink:. We all think differently though but as long as you enjoy your music that is all that matters...
  6. kn19h7


    yep, exactly :D
  7. Jaywalk3r

    I seriously suggest that making arbitrary assumptions without testing is not how science works. If you want to make a valid scientific comparison between codecs, you must first verify that any other variables are not, themselves, identifiable.

    The signal to noise ratio attributable to hardware should be approximately the same for two files played at approximately the same volume. Changing the volume in software means the signal is no longer bit perfect, rendering the comparison something other than a comparison of codecs. Interesting, perhaps, but not the goal.
  8. robm321
    OR you could just listen for yourself and hear the difference or not hear the difference and save yourself hours of scientific study and experiment. That would allow you more time to enjoy music. Just a suggestion [​IMG]
  9. Head Injury
    Contrary to popular belief, and this may shock people, you can listen to music and discuss on forums at the same time!
  10. robm321
    Shocking!!!! [​IMG] (I can be sarcastic too [​IMG])
    Discussion and getting super anal about requests to not make assumptions without scientific tests are two different things, but that's just my humble little opinion. 
  11. Head Injury
    You can do that while listening to and enjoying music, as well. Simply put, your argument is weak. There is no reason not to talk about these things.
  12. Jaywalk3r

    Personally, I believe any difference that requires an AB comparison to notice is not worth worrying about in the first place.

    Having said that, I'm a scientist at heart, and believe that any claims made about audible differences between codecs need to be supported by rigorously designed and performed scientific experiments if they are to be taken seriously and accepted as legitimate. Note that I'm not saying there is no audible difference between lossless and lossy codecs. Science could never support such an assertion. I'm saying that the experiments I've read about concluding such an audible difference exists have not been controlled well enough for the results to justify that conclusion.
  13. robm321
    ^ I completely agree. They have been flawed. Which is why we are left to our own devices (ears).

    Scientific study is lacking in many areas of high end audio which makes it difficult to back up differences we hear with any data.

  14. anetode
    There are two different proven facts to reconcile. The first is that for a given song and a given codec at a high enough bitrate no one will be able to correctly ABX the difference. The second is that for yet another song, at any bitrate, may contain data that the codec screws up and results in clearly audible distortion. Fortunately, the first case is much more likely. Though if you look through the development forums of open source codecs like lame you will come across a number of "killer samples".
    What this says to me is that people who claim to be able to tell the difference in all cases are very likely wrong and display a bias ingrained through their notions of common sense rather than through rigorous testing.
  15. drez


    Anyone who doesn't do ABX testing everything is very likely wrong and subject to bias...  lolr  [​IMG][​IMG]
    Maybe people have better things to do than set up ABX tests over an utterly redundant issue.  mp3 has audible differences which can be proven with a null test - but honestly I cant say that the differences are DBT-proof, at least not with my gear.
    If you really feel like wasting time though you can create your own test or run with the files from here
    I tried this with a 24/96 WAVE to 320mp3 and even then the difference is very small, and my gear is not very bright (no pun intended) so I don't like my DBT chances.
    Does this mean I go and rip my whole music collection to mp3 - erm no!  I want to keep a bit perfect copy of my audio.
    You can feel free to save yourself $90 on a hard drive and rip everything to mp3 - you probably won't hear the difference unless your gear is very bright/revealing.
    But unfortunately that doesn't do it for me - I want to wring out every last microscopic theoretical drop of SQ possible from my music - especially for archiving in case I get higher resolution gear down the line.
    In the meantime I have better things to do with my time than worry about disk space lol!
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