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I just wish members here would show us photos of their set-ups and listening rooms

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Aadams    0
4 hours ago, ar_pro said:

The interim will probably see a certain percentage of people who still have collections of LPs, CDs, or files, but at some point the model will be "no-nership", with streaming access a necessity of life. One more monthly charge to absorb into the budget, without thinking twice.

 

Agree. I stopped buying vinyl in the late 80s.  I never had more than several hundred albums. I still have the direct to disc and early Telarc pressings, plus a few others to which I had an emotional attachment, stored in boxes, maybe a hundred in all.  I sold the remainder about 5 years ago.  I still purchase CDs when I want a lossless format file.  On narrow dynamic range material I can hear no difference between Lossless and HI bit rate Lossy so those I purchase as downloads.  I have not made the leap to streaming because I am still waiting for a Hi res streaming service that is dependable as broadcast radio and also has a deep catalog of classical with the labels I like.

I do not miss the random clicks and pops or the need for careful handling of vinyl.  I especially do not miss the groove noise when trying to hear the quite passages of The Lark Ascending.

On speakers however, I am old school AR and will be for the foreseeable future.

Adams

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Noise on records has never bothered me in the 45 years that alive been a serious listener/collector.. I don't buy trashed records, and vacuum clean if they're really noisy, but it's never been an issue. I tend to listen to a lot of styles where a little noise doesn't affect the listening experience, but  I can certainly understand a person who listens to a lot of classical music to prefer the sonic perfection of digital. And as I buy and listen to pretty much all mediums I begrudge nobody their preference for enjoyment. I've never been a participant in the analog vs. digital wars. All that matters is the music. 

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ar_pro    0

Within our areas of interest, we have a hellacious collection of Classical music as files that we stream from our server, although I've recently been picking up boxed sets of sealed LPs from eBay, which seem to sell for low, low prices. The noise-free background and dynamic range of digital is easily recognized with this type of music, but there's still a certain unique musical quality with a well-recorded & manufactured LP.

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Aadams    0
On 10/3/2017 at 1:41 AM, ar_pro said:

but at some point the model will be "no-nership", with streaming access a necessity of life. One more monthly charge to absorb into the budget, without thinking twice.

This is an unusual discussion in a CSP forum.  It made me realize I hadn’t really taken my digital hi fi bearings in a while so I performed a survey to see what is available in the way of lossless and Hi Res streaming.  Here are the results:

Hi Res streaming is barely underway.  It is strictly for early adopters who want to spend around $35 a month for a limited catalogue and who believe their lives will change when hi res comes through their speakers.

Lossless streaming is available from Tidal and Deezer.  There are rumors of Spotify offering Lossless soon.  Apple’s catalog has for years now been stored in lossless format though to date never offered for download or streaming.   If Spotify offers lossless look for Apple to follow.

There’s always a catch.   Tidal only streams lossless to all the usual mobile devices and the Chrome Browser.   Almost nobody can distinguish lossless from 256AAC or 320 kb MP3 on a mobile device.  The Chrome Browser means you must have a computer directly connected to a Hi FI capable system to hear the improvement.

Apple will, of course, require you to use Itunes.  

Deezer lossless requires you have a Sonos system to realize the lossless potential.

All lossless streaming costs around twice the per month charge of lossy streaming.

There are still only two networked lossless music transport systems commercially available, Apple Airport Express and Sonos. Both have catches but they are genuine hi fidelity devices.

I am sure this is not an exhaustive survey of the lossless streaming world but it looks like convenient, lossless, streaming to audiophile systems is not here yet. 

I welcome more accurate info.

A by-product of my effort was discovering that part of my music network is obsolescent and can be improved with an newer box.

 

Adams

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genek    0

I've downsized considerably over the past 10 years. Both the RtR tape decks, one of the turntables and one of the two cassette decks are gone, along with the outboard NR boxes that went with the RtRs and one of the turntables, a couple of pairs of smaller AR speakers and one of two dbx dynamic range expanders. Have a dbx switching box and another impulse NR box in a closet no longer being used. The active system in my living room is a 4K TV, 90s Sherwood 5.1 pre/power pair, five AR speakers, AR turntable, SAE5000 impulse noise remover, dbx 3bx expander and 4K Roku box that streams audio and video from a 12TB Plex Media Server PC. I still have one cassette deck connected, but haven't used it in a long time.

I've been digitizing my OOP LPs to FLACs for streaming over the Roku. Can't detect any audible difference, but these aren't exactly MFSL recordings.

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The majority of my streaming are FLAC's of my ripped cd's. As I indicated earlier, I  occasionally use Spotify, for which I have the Premium subscription. I've also used Tidal lossless in the past. And frankly, I cannot tell any difference in audio quality between those 2 services, or them and my cd's. I'm sure it's there, but by choice I do not own the most resolving system possible, so can't hear it. Just happy that all these various mediums exist. 

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Aadams    0

I froze ---------had to look up "OOP".    All the lossless formats such as FLAC are supposed to preserve whatever is fed through the pipe during conversion so there should not be any audible difference from the original when decoded.  A FLAC file downloaded vs ripped encoding is the same quality without regard to the source.

My understanding is:

Lossless = CD quality

Hi Res = recordings done at higher sampling rates than CD.  Apparently new digital recordings are converted down to yield CD quality.   I think CDs can be up sampled but I really don't see how that adds to the listening experience but there is a lot I don't understand. CD quality is good enough for me in the absence of demonstrable evidence.

Spotify Premium uses 160k Vorbis,  free Spotify is 96kk or lower.   IMO High bit rate lossy formats work fine for any music that does not rely on silence or low noise for effect, especially old recordings of popular music  IMO

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genek    0

"Lossless" means that no information is being thrown away for the sake of file size.

CD, like MP3, is not a lossless format. Information is deleted for the sake of compression. Higher levels of compression delete more information. So a lower bitrate translates to lower audio quality (though whether you can actually hear it is another matter).

In a FLAC file, no information is deleted for the sake of compression. the bitrate is a function of how "dense" the data is and how much compression has been applied. The same level of compression applied to a low density recording will result in a FLAC with a lower bitrate. Higher levels of compression don't reduce audio quality, they just mean that your playback system has to work harder to decompress them. So the bitrate of a FLAC file is meaningless as far as audio quality.

 

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Aadams    0
28 minutes ago, genek said:

CD, like MP3, is not a lossless format

The PCM format is lossy?

28 minutes ago, genek said:

the bitrate is a function of how "dense" the data is and how much compression has been applied

Yes I have seen this.  All of my lossless files have different bit rates.

 

Forgot to ask earlier.  Do you back up 12TB?

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genek    0

CD is PCM and technically lossless. But PCM masters are made at much higher sampling rates, and in order to fit a digital master onto a CD, it's downsampled. So the files on the CD are lossless, but unless the master was originally recorded using CD specs, the content is "lossy" (or maybe a better word is "compromised") compared to the original master. This is why there are digital formats like SACD or DVD-A that are higher quality audio than CD. And why some people think a FLAC rip of an LP is better than a commercial CD of the same title.

WRT backup, I have two 12TB systems that are synched together. It's kind of like RAID, except that the mirrored drives are in separate computers. If one goes down there's another one still running while I get it back online.

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Aadams    0

 

1 hour ago, genek said:

CD is PCM and technically lossless. But PCM masters are made at much higher sampling rates, and in order to fit a digital master onto a CD, it's downsampled. So the files on the CD are lossless, Understood but unless the master was originally recorded using CD specs, the content is "lossy" (or maybe a better word is "compromised") compared to the original master. Are you refereeing to masters that were not originally digital?  Or sloppy production practices? Or lossy in the sense that it was derived from a higher resolution format?

This is why there are digital formats like SACD or DVD-A that are higher quality audio than CD.  Yes

And why some people think a FLAC rip of an LP is better than a commercial CD of the same title.  Again are you talking about vinyl from digital or non digital masters?  I know there were plenty of crappy cd releases of albums first released on vinyl.  Or the idea that an LP derived from a high res PCM file is better recording than a cd version?

WRT backup, I have two 12TB systems that are synched together. It's kind of like RAID, except that the mirrored drives are in separate computers. If one goes down there's another one still running while I get it back online.  Do you like their cloud offering?

Adams

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genek    0
6 hours ago, Aadams said:

Are you refereeing to masters that were not originally digital?  Or sloppy production practices? Or lossy in the sense that it was derived from a higher resolution format?

Derived from higher resolution. Although sloppy production practices certainly don't help.

6 hours ago, Aadams said:

Again are you talking about vinyl from digital or non digital masters?  I know there were plenty of crappy cd releases of albums first released on vinyl.  Or the idea that an LP derived from a high res PCM file is better recording than a cd version?

I'm referring to people who are ripping their own FLACs from LPs and consider the sound better than what they would get by buying commercial CDs of the same titles. It sounds logical to me that an analog LP from a 192kHz digital master could potentially be a better source for a lossless FLAC than a 44kHz digital CD, but whether we could hear the difference is another matter. 

I presume that commercially available FLACs are being made from hi-res digital masters, even if the original studio recordings were analog. I don't see DG or Philips sending the original analog masters from their studio archives when someone licenses their titles for digital delivery.

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Aadams    0
7 hours ago, genek said:

I'm referring to people who are ripping their own FLACs from LPs and consider the sound better than what they would get by buying commercial CDs of the same titles. It sounds logical to me that an analog LP from a 192kHz digital master could potentially be a better source for a lossless FLAC than a 44kHz digital CD, but whether we could hear the difference is another matter. 

Thank you. 

My understanding is the vinyl and the CD are, in a sense, independent by-products of another process. The yield success of the CD is independent of the yield success of the LP, therefore it is reasonable to expect that one version could be better than the other. The simple probability is equal that either could be superior to the other but if both fully exploit their respective limits, then the CD will be superior in important measurable and audible ways.   It is also probable , if both masters are made with equal care and the music material fits comfortably into the limits of the vinyl medium that both versions will provide an excellent listening experience with  differences not readily apparent, but to make a blanket assumption that the LP would always be superior seems to defy probability.

The fact that some prefer LP derived FLACs is just proof that the ear is almost completely subjective when it comes to music and some listeners know less about the recording process than I do.

Now, I will remember that “Lossless” = lossless compression format.

 

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Carlspeak    0

Provenance. The most important aspect of determination of a recording's origins. Most labels don't seem to want to share that information. Most audiophiles want it. 

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Aadams    0
On ‎10‎/‎5‎/‎2017 at 8:22 AM, Carlspeak said:

Provenance. The most important aspect of determination of a recording's origins. Most labels don't seem to want to share that information. Most audiophiles want it. 

Is this an example of the provenance to which you refer?

 

image.thumb.jpeg.da517a0a3700c2f6de4f6ecf5557b81e.jpeg

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Carlspeak    0

I’d say that recording qualifies. Many true provenant recordings today are done using DSD. What was the label of that recording?

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Aadams    0
1 hour ago, Carlspeak said:

I’d say that recording qualifies. Many true provenant recordings today are done using DSD. What was the label of that recording?

Telarc.  I have no other Label Names with this much disclosure but most of my stuff is pretty old.

 

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Carlspeak    0
1 hour ago, Carlspeak said:

I’d say that recording qualifies. Many true provenant recordings today are done using DSD. What was the label of that recording?

Here's a very nice presentation on DSD put together by one of the member of our CT. Audio Society.

 

 

DSDSlideshow_130927.pdf

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Aadams    0
1 hour ago, Carlspeak said:

Here's a very nice presentation on DSD put together by one of the member of our CT. Audio Society.

Informative.  Thanks.  The embedded links are interesting.

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Aadams    0
3 hours ago, Carlspeak said:

Here's a very nice presentation on DSD put together by one of the member of our CT. Audio Society.

It looks like there was an audio demo at the meeting.  Did you actually here a difference in in Hi def files and the same recording on a red book CD through speakers?  I can see how a difference could be heard  with headphones and a low noise amp.

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Aadams    0
On ‎10‎/‎6‎/‎2017 at 1:15 PM, Carlspeak said:

Here's a very nice presentation on DSD put together by one of the member of our CT. Audio Society.

I have done of a lot of searching and found some interesting reading on the topic of DSD.    DSD appears to be a future proof recording technology which is used to preserve old recordings and create new ones with dynamic range greater than what the human ear can safely hear.  The process appears similar to the recording of RAW files in consumer digital photography.  The RAW image is rarely perfect but it captures the greatest amount of data which becomes the basis for manipulation by a human using a computer to yield a pleasing result.  Afterward it can be downsized to other smaller image formats to suit an intended purpose. To display the full dynamic range of the largest 35mm RAW files, which cannot yet exceed that of the human eye, you would need a wall larger than can be found in most houses.  Likewise,to fully exploit the dynamic range available in DSD you will need a listening space quieter than most of us can conveniently achieve.  I am not sure the parallel is exact but it is very similar.

  The question is the same as it has always been, are you chasing sound or music.  Just buy what moves you.

Adams

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