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You know you're an audiophile when...

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by ohhgourami, Mar 14, 2011.
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  1. Argyris Contributor
    It definitely varies depending on the source material. Using my settings, it's actually kind of comical looking at the bitrate counter on Kansas' Leftoverture, which spends most of its time below 150kbps, is usually around 130kbps, and on occasion even dips below 100kbps! It's a truly crappy sounding album, with almost no treble energy, barely any imaging, and lots of uninteresting "wall of sound" arrangement. This presents little challenge to the encoder; the average for the original album (non-bonus) tracks is 136kbps. Most of the rest of my collection has an average of >170kbps, and some of the more complex and shimmery-sounding albums (the Yes and Genesis stuff, mostly) push that closer to ~180kbps.
     
    Like I said before, VBR AAC (NOT what iTunes gives you; you need to use the encoder backend I linked in my last post) is incredibly efficient. It's a little fiddly getting it set up, but you only need to do it once. After that, you're probably saving a good 25% of space over what you'd otherwise need to use to achieve the same overall fidelity.
     
     
     
    Of course you know you're an audiophile when you a) know the difference between ABR and VBR, and b) know that iTunes doesn't expose the latter capability of the QT AAC encoder.
     
  2. GL1TCH3D

    Honestly for portable use I wouldn't even bother with lossless if space is an issue.
    I personally use wav on the go because I have a 120gb ipod classic along with a CLAS and O2 as a portable rig for the hd800.
    I wouldn't really bother otherwise (and even with this rig you often won't hear differences, it depends on the recording quality and the intensity of the song, I could probably go with 320kbps mp3 without noticing a difference).
     
  3. GL1TCH3D
    [quote name="Brooko" url="/t/544391/you-know-youre-an-audiophile-when/4530#post_8882158"

    You guys ever tried an abx (blind test) using Foobar 2000 abx plugin (volume matched) .... or is it just a feeling ...... ?

    Most people who say they can tell the difference between aac256 vs 320mp3, or even aac256/320mp3 and flac, have never actually tested themselves under proper conditions. The results are usually ..... enlightening.[/quote]

    I have tried the foobar blind test. Very briefly though. I got a solid percentage correct and I feel it really depends in the song, and even then you have to pay attention. It won't jump out at you like a 128kbps mp3.

    I also made my friend do the test, he choose the lcd2r1 to do it, he got it right between 320kbps mp3 and flac 2/3rds of the time.
     
  4. Brooko Contributor
    Quote:
     
    Here's the deal though - you have to do at least 15 tests to get a meaningful result.  Your 'very briefly' and 'solid percentage' essentially mean nothing - and are worse when you state publicly you can tell the difference.  That just means a whole generation of new 'audiophiles' will repeat what they hear from the generation before - without actually testing themselves etc - and without actually knowing rather than guessing.  There is no shame in being unable to tell the difference no matter how good our gear is.  With the technology improvements in the codecs over the years, we're not supposed to be able to tell the difference.
     
    BTW 2/3rds of the time (for your friend) is a statistically failed test.  To actually tell the difference you need to be more than 10 tests, and below 5%.  All the result says is that he's actually just like the vast majority of the rest of us ...... he's guessing and can't tell the difference either.
     
    Please note - I'm not attacking here - far from it - I'm just encouraging others to actually be aware of their own limitations.  Endless parroting of the same false assumptions over and over helps no-one.
     
  5. stevenswall
    ^I've tested it with CD rips from original Journey, Billy Joel, and Boston CD's... It was about 50/50 comparing a 320kbps MP3 to 1411 WAV after 20+ tests. Now I want to try it with 128kbps. I used the Ultimate Ears TripleFi 10, and my Etymotic Mc5.
     
  6. headphone man07
    when you want to use dr dre beats as a shooting pigeon.
    when you have a headphone,amp/dac and eq preset for every song in your library.

    When your friends think you're
    headphonesexual (you are attracted to headphones)
    You take your home rig on the train.

    you pack some money your tickets and your home rig + selection of headphones on a 2 week holiday.

    you were conned into a one way ticket for your holiday because you couldn't afford the two way because of the headphones you just bought.
     
  7. PakoBoy
    I did also a test between flac and 320kbps. I listened to 5 songs faild 5 times :p
     
  8. Argyris Contributor
    Quote:
     
    Agreed. The whole point is to fool human hearing into not missing the discarded information. It's supposed to be transparent. I think a lot of audiophiles consider it like "street cred" to claim that they can hear the difference between lossy and lossless compression. It validates both their gear and their prowess, and it gives them something they can use to look down on the "unwashed masses" who like Beats and who listen at 128kbps. To me, this is not a good attitude.
     
    I fully believe that, eventually, there will be a codec (likely a highly evolved form of one of the existing ones) that will be transparent to virtually everybody at 128kbps. These codecs rely upon psychoacoustic trickery, and at this point we still only barely understand the basics of how our brains interpret our hearing. The more we learn about how humans hear, the more efficient our codecs will become at discarding only the information (and at only the correct times) that (it) won't be missed.
     
    As it is, I'm already amazed at how far AAC has come. It was always more efficient than MP3, but I'm still surprised just how low the average bitrate of my newly-encoded library is. At an average of 163kbps, that's a little more than 11% of the uncompressed size. There may be a few passages lurking in there where I can spot the compression--I haven't listened to the whole library yet and I'm still evaluating my settings. But if I do find something, I'll just encode that individual track or album using higher settings. No need to redo the ones where I can't tell the difference.
     
  9. Sotone
    When you go to many concerts in great halls an realize that no equipment can equal the sound of a great orchestra or chamber music ensemble performing live. 
     
  10. takato14
    Quote:
    Except maybe the SR-009 with a Smyth Realiser.
     
  11. Argyris Contributor
    Quote:
     
    I imagine that would just sound like a really good set of speakers, though, since that's what it attempts to synthesize.
     
    Still would love to hear one, though.
     
  12. Argyris Contributor
    You know you're an audiophile when your Web Design instructor is talking about "embedding audio files" and you stop posting on Head-Fi to pay attention for a second (only to realize what he really said).
     
    CashNotCredit likes this.
  13. enderbender
    When metal suddenly becomes meditative as you try to find order within the chaos
     
  14. wolfetan44
    Quote:
    Really? People say Beats Audio is absolutely terrible and its one of the noisest jacks they've ever used..
     
  15. takato14
    Quote:
    Beats audio is quite literally nothing more than a simple software EQ. If you're hearing noise, its EMI from the device's motherboard or something.
     
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