WAV Sounds The Best (To Me)
post-11595580
Post #121 of 305

Don Hills

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Jun 13, 2013
Messages
404
Reaction score
200
Joined
Jun 13, 2013
Posts
404
Likes
200
  I stand by my statement. On my full 2 ch floor system, most 24-bit files I listen to sound better than my 16-bit files.
 
(hmm maybe I should stop upgrading....)
 
cheers,

No DAC is perfect. (Though some of them are very close.) A DAC may perform (and maybe even sound) different when processing 24/96 versus 16/44.1.
- Select a 24/96 source you are familiar with.
- Convert it to 16/44.1 with a high quality converter, such as Sox.
- Convert the result back  to 24/96.
- Using a tool such as Foobar ABX, compare the original 24/96 and your doubly converted 24/96.
 
     Share This Post       
post-11596841
Post #122 of 305

CanadianMaestro

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Jul 30, 2013
Messages
5,100
Reaction score
1,380
Location
Canada
Joined
Jul 30, 2013
Location
Canada
Posts
5,100
Likes
1,380
 
No DAC is perfect. (Though some of them are very close.) A DAC may perform (and maybe even sound) different when processing 24/96 versus 16/44.1.
- Select a 24/96 source you are familiar with.
- Convert it to 16/44.1 with a high quality converter, such as Sox.
- Convert the result back  to 24/96.
- Using a tool such as Foobar ABX, compare the original 24/96 and your doubly converted 24/96.

Thanks, will try this this WE. Never heard of Sox, but will add it to my software board!
 
     Share This Post       
post-11597405
Post #126 of 305

CanadianMaestro

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Jul 30, 2013
Messages
5,100
Reaction score
1,380
Location
Canada
Joined
Jul 30, 2013
Location
Canada
Posts
5,100
Likes
1,380
   
dBpoweramp works with Apple now.

OK didn't know that. I use XLD to inter-convert file types, but not bit depth.
Anyways, my "experimental" phase with music files is long past. So don't hold your breath.
cheers
 
     Share This Post       
post-11597422
Post #127 of 305

Music Alchemist

Pokémon trainer of headphones
Joined
Dec 17, 2013
Messages
19,810
Reaction score
1,816
Joined
Dec 17, 2013
Posts
19,810
Likes
1,816
  OK didn't know that. I use XLD to inter-convert file types, but not bit depth.
Anyways, my "experimental" phase with music files is long past. So don't hold your breath.
cheers
 
In case you do decide to use dBpoweramp, here's a brief tutorial. Right-click the file. Click Convert To. Next to Converting To, select Wave. Next to Uncompressed, select 16 bit and 44.1 kHz. Click Convert. Then label the two files (original and new) and listen. Or do the extra step of converting the new file back to high-res if your gear is screwy.
 
     Share This Post       
post-11597430
Post #128 of 305

CanadianMaestro

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Jul 30, 2013
Messages
5,100
Reaction score
1,380
Location
Canada
Joined
Jul 30, 2013
Location
Canada
Posts
5,100
Likes
1,380
   
In case you do decide to use dBpoweramp, here's a brief tutorial. Right-click the file. Click Convert To. Next to Converting To, select Wave. Next to Uncompressed, select 16 bit and 44.1 kHz. Click Convert. Then label the two files (original and new) and listen. Or do the extra step of converting the new file back to high-res if your gear is screwy.
 
I listen to all files on my BDP-1, thru a USB stick/drive. All I do is take the files, transfer them to a stick, plug the stick into my BDP-1, then playback thru my floor system. Flawless playback thru BDA-1. If the sound is "screwy", it's not because of my hardware.
Thanks for the tips.
 
     Share This Post       
post-11597640
Post #129 of 305

cjl

500+ Head-Fier
Joined
Dec 28, 2009
Messages
833
Reaction score
194
Joined
Dec 28, 2009
Posts
833
Likes
194
   
I was kind of saying, "I dare you to try to pass an ABX test of 256 kbps AAC vs lossless." Because as far as I know, it's never been done.
It probably could be done, given a specific, carefully chosen sample, lots of fast, level-matched a/b switching, and careful practice on what to listen for. Keep in mind that lossy compression has never been claimed to perfectly audibly reproduce a lossless file - it merely tries to minimize the audibility of the pieces it throws away. Modern lossy compression is darn good at it, but I wouldn't be surprised if 256 AAC could be beaten with the right sample. I know there have been successful ABXs between uncompressed PCM and LAME 320 before. Yes, lossy audio is more than adequate for almost any possible application, but in order to claim audible perfection, you really do need lossless.
 
     Share This Post       
post-11597743
Post #130 of 305

bigshot

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Nov 16, 2004
Messages
20,743
Reaction score
3,087
Location
Hollywood USA
Joined
Nov 16, 2004
Location
Hollywood USA
Posts
20,743
Likes
3,087
Website
www.facebook.com
  It probably could be done, given a specific, carefully chosen sample, lots of fast, level-matched a/b switching, and careful practice on what to listen for.
 
I wouldn't bet on that.
 
It may seem possible in theory because the zeros and ones are different, but in practice our ears are the limiting factor, and lossy compression has been *designed* to take advantage of those limitations. MP4 compression is VERY sophisticated and is designed to be transparent at high bitrates. I've got over a year and a half of music encoded AAC 256 VBR and I haven't found a single file yet where there is any audible artifacting at all.
 
     Share This Post       
post-11597779
Post #131 of 305

CanadianMaestro

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Jul 30, 2013
Messages
5,100
Reaction score
1,380
Location
Canada
Joined
Jul 30, 2013
Location
Canada
Posts
5,100
Likes
1,380
   
In case you do decide to use dBpoweramp, here's a brief tutorial. Right-click the file. Click Convert To. Next to Converting To, select Wave. Next to Uncompressed, select 16 bit and 44.1 kHz. Click Convert. Then label the two files (original and new) and listen. Or do the extra step of converting the new file back to high-res if your gear is screwy.

Actually, I can do the conversions with my XLD software.
FLAC 96/24 --> WAV 96/24 --> WAV 96/16
Then compare playback quality of the two WAV files. And of the WAV-16 vs. FLAC-24.
 
     Share This Post       
post-11598188
Post #132 of 305

cjl

500+ Head-Fier
Joined
Dec 28, 2009
Messages
833
Reaction score
194
Joined
Dec 28, 2009
Posts
833
Likes
194
   
I wouldn't bet on that.
 
It may seem possible in theory because the zeros and ones are different, but in practice our ears are the limiting factor, and lossy compression has been *designed* to take advantage of those limitations. MP4 compression is VERY sophisticated and is designed to be transparent at high bitrates. I've got over a year and a half of music encoded AAC 256 VBR and I haven't found a single file yet where there is any audible artifacting at all.
You'd never hear it unless you did level matched fast-switch comparisons of hand selected sections of audio (selected to be the most challenging to the psychoacoustic model used to develop the codec). You wouldn't hear an artifact when just listening to the file in isolation - you need the comparison, since any errors, distortion, or artifacting would be so quiet compared to the RMS level of the signal. That having been said, I wouldn't be surprised at all to learn that it is possible to detect the difference between 256k AAC and lossless given a particularly difficult sample with fast-switch a/b comparison.
 
Not that any of that is terribly relevant to normal music listening...
 
     Share This Post       
post-11598330
Post #133 of 305

bigshot

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Nov 16, 2004
Messages
20,743
Reaction score
3,087
Location
Hollywood USA
Joined
Nov 16, 2004
Location
Hollywood USA
Posts
20,743
Likes
3,087
Website
www.facebook.com
I level matched all the samples in the test I share, and with most digital players you can jump around the timeline to compare. The samples are at even increments. Also the music consists of two samples, one choral that is extremely prone to artifacting, and the other orchestral with a broad dynamic range and wide frequency response.
 
I've done direct A/B switched comparisons of lossless and 256 AAC with particularly difficult tracks to encode, and if there is a human being on earth that can tell the difference, I'd sure like to meet them!
 
     Share This Post       
post-11629837
Post #134 of 305

thelostMIDrange

1000+ Head-Fier
Joined
Nov 1, 2011
Messages
1,281
Reaction score
110
Joined
Nov 1, 2011
Posts
1,281
Likes
110
I'm with the OP, and feel WAV sounds more natural compared to FLAC. I dis-covered this on my own before I had even spent a second looking it up on the internet to find that they should sound the same. But it just didn't seem so to me. I've got no reason to want to prefer WAV, in fact I have plenty of reason not to, i.e. extra storage space. But I've since reripped all my vinyl into WAV which is also a task in itself so I must be delusional to spend all that time when it doesn't matter. Discussing the topic with the local hifi shop, the fellow I spoke with agreed and suggested that at least in Windows operating system, he found WAV sounded better. I originally came upon the belief when using a sansa player. I had many FLACs and some WAVs and over time I felt the WAV's always sounded different. So who knows, some suggest there is some processing going on with FLAC even though it should be all done prior to the bits coming into the auditory realm, but there might be something going on that results in meaningful difference. I can understand those who feel passionately that it's the same info for FLAC and WAV and it's all in our heads and am envious of all the extra storage space they have because of it. Oh well
 
     Share This Post       
post-11630182
Post #135 of 305

Music Alchemist

Pokémon trainer of headphones
Joined
Dec 17, 2013
Messages
19,810
Reaction score
1,816
Joined
Dec 17, 2013
Posts
19,810
Likes
1,816
  I'm with the OP, and feel WAV sounds more natural compared to FLAC. I dis-covered this on my own before I had even spent a second looking it up on the internet to find that they should sound the same. But it just didn't seem so to me. I've got no reason to want to prefer WAV, in fact I have plenty of reason not to, i.e. extra storage space. But I've since reripped all my vinyl into WAV which is also a task in itself so I must be delusional to spend all that time when it doesn't matter. Discussing the topic with the local hifi shop, the fellow I spoke with agreed and suggested that at least in Windows operating system, he found WAV sounded better. I originally came upon the belief when using a sansa player. I had many FLACs and some WAVs and over time I felt the WAV's always sounded different. So who knows, some suggest there is some processing going on with FLAC even though it should be all done prior to the bits coming into the auditory realm, but there might be something going on that results in meaningful difference. I can understand those who feel passionately that it's the same info for FLAC and WAV and it's all in our heads and am envious of all the extra storage space they have because of it. Oh well
 
Would you be willing to do an ABX test to document whether you can distinguish between FLAC and WAV with statistical significance?
 
     Share This Post       

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 1)

Top