Question about music quality
Nov 15, 2014 at 6:26 AM Post #31 of 48

ziphyx

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Without trying to get in the way of this little argument, I just like to add that my new amp came in and I can hear a -not very present-  but definite difference between same songs with different bitrates. It's not a huge difference (at least in my perception) but the difference is definitely made more clear with the addition of this amp. I did not do much testing on this subject as of present, but might add that later. 
 
Nov 15, 2014 at 12:22 PM Post #32 of 48

bigshot

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Which bitrate and which codec? Have you tried AAC? It should be completely transparent by 256
 
Nov 15, 2014 at 9:44 PM Post #33 of 48

ziphyx

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  Which bitrate and which codec? Have you tried AAC? It should be completely transparent by 256

Bitrate from 128~256 - Flac (700~1000)
I'm not sure about codec, but it probably wasn't that good, as the difference was pretty obvious in some cases. I just did a very quick comparison with songs I happened to have in low AND high bitrates, which I usually try to avoid. When I got some more time I might check with songs I compress to different rates myself. All I know for now is that I am very pleased with the performance (or increase in performance) that the addition of the asgard 2 has given me. 
biggrin.gif

 
Nov 15, 2014 at 9:59 PM Post #34 of 48

Head Injury

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  Bitrate from 128~256 - Flac (700~1000)
I'm not sure about codec, but it probably wasn't that good, as the difference was pretty obvious in some cases. I just did a very quick comparison with songs I happened to have in low AND high bitrates, which I usually try to avoid. When I got some more time I might check with songs I compress to different rates myself. All I know for now is that I am very pleased with the performance (or increase in performance) that the addition of the asgard 2 has given me. 
biggrin.gif


I recommend you also do an ABX test between files if you can, and post results. Unless this was an upgrade from something like a noisy motherboard, there's not really any reason the amp would be revealing compression artifacts you couldn't hear before.
 
Nov 16, 2014 at 2:24 AM Post #35 of 48

bigshot

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  I'm not sure about codec, but it probably wasn't that good, as the difference was pretty obvious in some cases.

 
There are three really common codecs, Frauenhofer MP3, LAME MP3 and AAC. All totally different. AAC is the best. You would have trouble with most music telling a difference using AAC, even at 192.
 
Nov 16, 2014 at 2:35 AM Post #36 of 48

Dark_wizzie

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There are three really common codecs, Frauenhofer MP3, LAME MP3 and AAC. All totally different. AAC is the best. You would have trouble with most music telling a difference using AAC, even at 192.

Noob question... I thought AAC is a completely different audio format? Like we have FLAC, MP3, OGG, AAC, Opus, etc. I am currently using the latest version of LAME because I thought it was best. 
 
Nov 16, 2014 at 2:37 AM Post #37 of 48

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Here's another tip that you may find useful, or at least entertaining: encode your files to various lower bitrates and discover your own threshold of transparency. For example, if you start with something really low like 30 kbps, the music will sound awful. Keep going up and you will find that before you even hit 100 kbps, it improves dramatically. The rest should go without saying.
 
Nov 16, 2014 at 2:38 AM Post #38 of 48

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  Noob question... I thought AAC is a completely different audio format? Like we have FLAC, MP3, OGG, AAC, Opus, etc. I am currently using the latest version of LAME because I thought it was best. 

 
There are actually different AAC encoders. I use tVBR QuickTime AAC, which I control via dBpoweramp with a custom command-line encoder.
 
...But if you just go with the default AAC encoder of whichever program you are using, you should be fine.
 
Nov 16, 2014 at 2:53 AM Post #39 of 48

Dark_wizzie

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  Here's another tip that you may find useful, or at least entertaining: encode your files to various lower bitrates and discover your own threshold of transparency. For example, if you start with something really low like 30 kbps, the music will sound awful. Keep going up and you will find that before you even hit 100 kbps, it improves dramatically. The rest should go without saying.

Yes, and I know my result will be pretty embarrassing if I take such a test.
...Doesn't stop me from wanting my tracks in FLAC though.
tongue.gif
 Knowing I have FLAC files helps me sleep better at night. I might need to see a psychologist.
 
Nov 16, 2014 at 3:12 AM Post #40 of 48

Music Alchemist

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  Yes, and I know my result will be pretty embarrassing if I take such a test.
...Doesn't stop me from wanting my tracks in FLAC though.
tongue.gif
 Knowing I have FLAC files helps me sleep better at night. I might need to see a psychologist.

 
Well, that isn't so much a test as it is a fun little experiment to hear for yourself how sound quality improves dramatically and then starts to level off as you work your way up the bitrate ladder.
 
As far as psychological benefits of lossless formats go, I prefer Wave because, you know...there's the whole sound wave and ocean wave connotation going on and the name just sounds so much cooler. Plus, you can imagine that the uncompressed files are doing a better job of playing your music with the highest purity. ...Of course, assuming there aren't any major technical difficulties, all lossless formats should sound the same. (I even started a thread for those who claim otherwise to test their perceptions.)
 
Closer to the topic of this thread, most of the time I don't perceive audible differences between 256 kbps AAC and lossless, but sometimes I clearly do...albeit still in the realm of perception. I haven't bothered to document any of my own tests between lossy and lossless to see how accurate my perception really is.
 
Nov 16, 2014 at 3:56 AM Post #41 of 48

bigshot

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  Noob question... I thought AAC is a completely different audio format? Like we have FLAC, MP3, OGG, AAC, Opus, etc. I am currently using the latest version of LAME because I thought it was best. 


AAC is a flavor of MP4. It's the best codec I've found. Completely transparent at 256 VBR.
 
Nov 16, 2014 at 8:01 AM Post #42 of 48

toolio

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  Yup, he pulled the same stunt for my simple question as well. Seems like answering a question and staying on topic for a few seconds is something he is incapable of doing.

Nobody is pullling "a stunt" here. The fact that I don't immediately respond to a petulant poster who quite correctly describes himself as "resident Obnoxious" in his profile is merely a reflection of the fact that I have a life outside of this forum that requires my attention, and that I believe that needlessly disgruntled fanboys are not necessarily entitled to make demands of other members. Not to mention that most of the time during this discussion I have been on planes. I stated my opinion (please google the word "opinion"), to which I am entitled.
 
Do I care that you "don't want to read about how you like to drive your cars"? Not in the least. Clearly you also need to look up the word "metaphor."
 
Unlike some other members of "sound science", who are clearly capable of carrying on discussion in a rational, friendly, manner, you choose to be confrontational. Time to take the headphones off and see how the real wold discusses things, Dark_wizzie. Or you could simply grow up, I suppose.
 
Nov 16, 2014 at 8:18 AM Post #43 of 48

justaname

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Why do the blind subjectivists in sound science talk funny? Intransigent? What? Inflexible? It's like people try to sound overly sophisticated in an attempt to make their reply sound more scientific.

Maybe I'm just stupid :ph34r:

Back on topic...
 
Nov 16, 2014 at 8:38 AM Post #44 of 48

toolio

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It's probably me you are referring to. Of course the irony is that I'm the one being accused of being non-scientific. It's not the science fanboys using the big words. My apologies for having a vocabulary, lol. It's nothing personal.
 
Nov 16, 2014 at 9:01 AM Post #45 of 48

Hudson

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What would you guys suggest as the most straightforward way for me to compare various codecs at different bit-rates?
Currently, 99% of my music library is ALAC running itunes on windows.
Thanks!
 

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