WAV Sounds The Best (To Me)
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bigshot

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I like the name Eargasm! It sounds messy!
 
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post-11637398
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thelostMIDrange

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oh, it is . by the way, the difference that I heard (suspect) was that WAV flowed more natural. It sounded more like my straight record listening. FLAC seemed disjointed ever so slightly. Again, I stumbled on this a few years ago on my own before I even knew that FLAC was compressed and WAV was not. I had no idea that FLAC was chopped up and rejoined. I knew nothing, in fact I thought they where the same, so the point is I had no preconceived idea of what FLAC was or was not all I knew was I could cram more of them onto a sansa than WAV. And when I heard the difference despair set in as I saw storage space decrease and WAV's loaded. And so now it's a done deal and no convincing me will have me go back to FLAC for practical reasons. Plus like they say storage will double every year so in a few more FLAC will become obsolete and you'll be converting to WAV as well, just in case.
 
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bigshot

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Now you have me puzzled. Have you actually conducted a double blind test to determine if there is an actual difference or are you just listening to music and making up words to describe your subjective impressions?
 
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thelostMIDrange

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my bad, the only tests i've done are personal blind A'B's. I would publish the results but who would believe it. And if it is real, it's quite subtle and inconsequential all things considered. But it was enough for me to commit to the hassle of using WAV. It could very well be a delusion. One way to do the blind test, as I did, is to rip the same files in WAV and flac. Put a couple dozen WAV's one sansa player and all FLACS on another (different colors) and then haphazardly enjoy your music for a few months and see if you tend to grab one player over the other towards the end of it. Of course have your wife or girlfriend load the files so you don't know what's on each player. This is the only real way to test this stuff. Personal experience is the only way to go, but make it objective and fair by making it blind and eliminating all the variables but one, which is exactly what the above experiment does. There is literally no difference except that one variable (unless the sansa players vary). Assuming you stick with one set of headphones for the multi month period. But then again I guess you could use different headphones as long as you listen to both players over the time with each. But I kept it simple by sticking with my goto set.
 
and again, I can't attest to this difference being real with digitally recorded CD's. I was using ripped vinyl which may or may not make a difference.
 
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  This is the only real way to test this stuff.
 

 
That has to be the craziest test I have ever seen. Sorry to say, but it will prove nothing.
 
Here's an easier way for to you do it, in much shorter time too:
 
http://www.head-fi.org/t/655879/setting-up-an-abx-test-simple-guide-to-ripping-tagging-transcoding#post_9268096
 
After doing the test, you can publish your results. You need a 95% confidence level (like 9/10 or 15/20) for your results to be statistically significant and any better than random guessing.
 
You should also compare WAV to 256 kbps AAC. (The AAC files must be converted from the WAV files to ensure they are the same master.) I'd be surprised if you could pass the test.
 
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bigshot

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  Put a couple dozen WAV's one sansa player and all FLACS on another (different colors) and then haphazardly enjoy your music for a few months and see if you tend to grab one player over the other towards the end of it.
 
And if you lose one of them in the seat cushions on your couch, your decision is simple!
 
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thelostMIDrange

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@alchemist, why is it crazy?
 
@bigshot. yes true, but I would add, if you feel a pang of loss over losing the red one and not the blue, then that may be meaningful all the more !
 
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bigshot

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OH! WAIT A MINUTE!
 
The two players are DIFFERENT COLORS?! Maybe you just prefer RED, not wav!
 
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thelostMIDrange

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dammit, this is true, you've just found the one variable....I did prefer the maroon one. So, to fine tune this experiement, let's make them the same color then and mark them some other way that has no emotional component.
 
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  @alchemist, why is it crazy?
 
Your proposed test accomplishes nothing because it only determines which one you prefer over time. You may prefer it for any number of reasons that have nothing to do with the file format. The only way I know of to determine whether you can reliably distinguish between them is to do the ABX test I linked you to. Should only take you a few minutes, instead of months, and since you claim to be able to tell them apart, this should prove (or disprove) it.
 
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thelostMIDrange

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preference is all i care about, but i've got 30 years of experience with regards to many related things, building instruments, playing music, hifi etc. But i'd agree if one has none of these references to the real world, then preference is meaningless and indicative of nothing much.
 
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bigshot

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Would you say that knowing how WAV and FLAC actually work might help? Like for instance that FLAC doesn't actually "chop up" the sound but simply converts it back to the exact same file as the WAV before it plays?
 
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  preference is all i care about, but i've got 30 years of experience with regards to many related things, building instruments, playing music, hifi etc. But i'd agree if one has none of these references to the real world, then preference is meaningless and indicative of nothing much.
 
If it sounds better to you, well hey, that's all that matters. But proving it to others involves strict requirements. As many others have, you may even find that, after proper tests, you were mistaken. Of course, testing it on a computer changes things around a bit, since you are perceiving these differences on a portable player. In any case, the test you have proposed is not controlled, it takes too long, and it won't prove anything at all. That's why you should do things more efficiently. We're here to help you do that, if you're willing.
 
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thelostMIDrange

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I don't think it matters to know how it really works. I just grabbed the phrase chopped up for affect not to be precise. A flac just organizes and then reorganizes doesn't it? If you can explain it in simple language i'd be interested to know, otherwise, I'd rather listen and play music than learn more about technical matters.
 
btw, I understand how technically bent people feel sympathy for those who are uneducated about it. Generally I feel ignorance is bliss is a wrong way to live but the consequences of being wrong about WAV are so miniscule, I think you can understand why I would form a preference and just go with it. The only possible downside is contributing to wrong ideas by posting about them which again I understand and sympathise with you guys concern. I don't like to be part of any disinformation campaign and do my best in all aspects of living to avoid this, which is why I always ad the possibility of being deluded and wrong. But all things considered, I still think there's something to it. There are others on the web with actual technical minds who also believe there is a difference? or are they all misinformed? again, could be.....I do understand it's the same bits of info, only that they are reconfigured prior to listening in FLAC right?
 
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  I don't think it matters to know how it really works. I just grabbed the phrase chopped up for affect not to be precise. A flac just organizes and then reorganizes doesn't it? If you can explain it in simple language i'd be interested to know, otherwise, I'd rather listen and play music than learn more about technical matters.
 
Unless there is a problem with your equipment, compressed lossless files (like FLAC) are uncompressed to output the exact same data as uncompressed lossless files (like WAV) -- and this typically occurs before playback, to an extent. Think of it like a ZIP archive for audio.
 
In the end, the only thing that matters in the context of proving whether you can hear a difference is passing and publishing an ABX test.
 
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