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Hi-Res Audio "showcase" playlist thread

  1. ClassicRock1976
    Hi all

    I´m hoping the people that have been listening to Hi-Res Audio for a while might be able to post their suggestions for the definitive songs that clearly illustrate the superiority of Hi-Res Audio (to be clear I dont want to start a fight about if anything above 16/44.1 is even worth it etc)

    Let me explain where I´m coming from:

    I´ve been living under a rock for the past few years apparently. I had no idea of even the existence of Hi-Res Audio. I was happy with my 320kbps mp3 collection for the longest time (which I thought was CD quality) - spent literally years building that collection, putting all the cover art, even lyrics in the metadata
    After my External HDD with all my music failed (no backup) a friend of mine convinced me to sign up for a Spotify Premium account. I went ahead and did that and have been making do with that since

    Recently read about Hi Res Audio and the numbers show the format to be way superior to mp3 or even CD
    I decided to take the plunge and see (or hear) for myself if the difference is that significant. If I find that it to be so, I´d like to start to rebuild my music collection and also slowly build a HiFi System worthy of Hi-Res Audio at home

    I decided to go about this by beginning with a portable player that wont break the bank
    Cayin N3 player (that allows external HDD connection)

    What I want is a definitive playlist of Hi-Res and Normal Spotify quality MP3 songs to load onto the player for the following 2 reasons

    1. In order to listen to the versions and convince myself that Hi-Res is definitely the way to go (and use the same to blow away my friends and show them the difference)

    2. And secondly I´d like to use this same playlist (and the N3 player) to test the audio equipment that I want to purchase down the line for enjoying the music at home

    I´d be grateful if you guys can take a stab at naming songs that you think the difference is night and day for such a playlist

  2. pithyginger63
    i'm not gonna post any songs because i dont actually know any that show why hi res is better (i have really bad ears). but what ive heard is that the best tracks for hi res tend to be acoustic recordings where you can hear the air in the room. In other words, complexity is the opposite of what you want in a high res recording. a complex track that has a lot of different sounds you can hear does not benefit as much from hi res audio as a very simple track. this makes sense because complex tracks contain so much things to listen to its hard to discern hi res from non hi res whereas a track with just a singer and his acoustic guitar will have the resonances from the room of the recording be more obvious, its those kind of details that benefit from hi res (i think, i only listen to electronic and orchestral music but i still buy hi res). honestly, if you can afford the disc space, get the hi res stuff, because then you can compress it to smaller size however you like. that is the real benefit of high res. you can have a large flac file just for archiving on your computer and have compressed mp3/aac on your dap or phone.
  3. ClassicRock1976
    Thanks for the response
    By this
    Do you mean acoustic "live" performances, (like unplugged)? Or even acoustic studio numbers?
    If live, does that extend beyond acoustic numbers to concerts as well....?
    Honestly I´m not an audiophile, always loved music though. I havent ever tested my capacity to be an audiophile which is why I´m intrigued by the test I want to do (although I´m guessing I might be in the same boat as you with bad ears - years of rock music and marriage I´m sure have taken their toll on my ear drums :))
    pithyginger63 likes this.
  4. Monsterzero
    Its hard to bring this topic up without starting a debate,but I will give you my answer,which is:

    Hi-Res aka 24bit lossless and/or DSD files rarely will wow you unless:

    The original recording was mastered well.I bought several 24/192 studio albums of The Ramones and I will be damned if I can hear any difference between those and 320 mp3s.I also have Bush "Sixteen Stone" in 24/192...dull,lifeless, no energy.
    Then there is the case of Alice in Chains Greatest Hits (remastered) in 24 bit...Unlike the others I mentioned this album you can def hear the difference,no question.Unfortunately its far worse than the original...The 24 bit treatment is fine,however the producer in charge of the remastering clearly decided that huffing paint prior to getting behind the board was the right thing to do....Awful!

    A bit along the lines of the previous comment,the tracks where I can hear a positive difference are well mastered and less complex for the most part.Eric Clapton Unplugged sounds fab in Hi-Rez,as does Grateful Dead "Friend of the Devil".
    The Outlaws "Green Grass(and High Tides)" is an exception to the no complexity rule.I can def hear better separation,wider and deeper staging and better detail in the 24bit version vs. 16/44.1.

    However,all that is a moot point if:

    You do not have the appropriate gear e.g. a nice DAC,amp and revealing headphones that have good synergy with the rest of your gear.
  5. pithyginger63
    studio. not that i can tell :p I've heard that some good recordings of hotel california make the difference really obvious, but i've never tried it myself. training your ears to tell the difference in abx test is definitely fun if a little time consuming. good luckk with practicing, but at the end of the day, i think whats most important is that we listen to music we enjoy :)
  6. ClassicRock1976
    Awesome, thanks for the feedback

    I hear your point about the mastering quality, I´ve read this multiple times on forums
    About the 320kbps comparison though, I didnt know that spotify streaming was at that quality level - I´m just talking about the normal spotify streaming quality comparison - surely its lower than 320kbps mp3 no? (I´m only judging by how quickly a song comes up even when I have a crappy data connection)
    And if its lower than 320kbps quality then there should be a wider gamut of songs that show a large difference no...?

    And your point about the gear is even more important
    For the first phase I wanted to do this test without breaking the bank. Decided on the Cayin N3 (150 USD) and Grado SR80e (100 USD) - I hope these cut the mustard
    What follows to set up a nice home HiFi would end up being a much more expensive proposition, I guess I´ll be looking for good equipment on the used market (and want to use the same N3 player to take along and test)

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