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Question about input A/D sample rates

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Anonymous
June 17, 2005 5:47:11 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Greetings,

I'm going to ask a dumb question here and perhaps someone can answer
it.

When I look at my mp3s, I notice the bit rates tend to be 128 kbps or
higher. I remember during my Napster days, I wouldn't look for
anything lower than 128 kbps and would often try for 160 or 192 kbps
encoding.

Now, that's all well and good. The sound quality is fabulous, and I
usually wouldn't settle for anything less than 128.

But now I'm researching potential home studio gear, and am leaning very
heavily towards the Digi 002R/ProTools LE setup, and it tells me that
it has 24-bit/96 kHz sampling options.

My question to the group (since it's Friday afternoon and I'm too lazy
to do any form of simple conversion) is, what is so special about 96
kHz encoding? How does that compare to the bit rates of my mp3s? I am
very very sure that such a high-end piece of digital recording gear
would have no trouble pumping out awesome sound, but I am a tad
confused on how I could relate the input sampling rate (and thus the
maximum fidelity possible of the signal at any point in its chain or
lifecycle) to the output of when I finally convert my finished product
to an mp3.

As far as I know, if standard CD sampling is 44.1 kHz, then 96 kHz must
be pretty awesome, but I'm looking for an exact correlation if
possible, if anyone can shed some light on this. Thanks very much.

Mike
June 18, 2005 12:01:21 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

On 17 Jun 2005 13:47:11 -0700, "Zerex71" <mfeher@stny.rr.com> wrote:

>Greetings,
>
>I'm going to ask a dumb question here and perhaps someone can answer
>it.
>
>When I look at my mp3s, I notice the bit rates tend to be 128 kbps or
>higher. I remember during my Napster days, I wouldn't look for
>anything lower than 128 kbps and would often try for 160 or 192 kbps
>encoding.

>But now I'm researching potential home studio gear, and am leaning very
>heavily towards the Digi 002R/ProTools LE setup, and it tells me that
>it has 24-bit/96 kHz sampling options.
>
>My question to the group (since it's Friday afternoon and I'm too lazy
>to do any form of simple conversion) is, what is so special about 96
>kHz encoding? How does that compare to the bit rates of my mp3s?

Totally different. mp3's are like 128 kbps for example. CD quality
is 44.1 kHz = 1,400 kbps, like 11 times more bandwidth. 24-bit 96 kHz
is like 5,000 - 6,000 kbps or something (I'm too lazy to do the math
too on Friday). 96/24 is over 40 times more bandwidth than 128 kbps
mp3's. Not even close, dude!

Julian
Anonymous
June 18, 2005 5:23:00 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

96/24 is over 40 times more bandwidth than 128 kbps
> mp3's. Not even close, dude!
>

.............and I have recently discovered that unless I record and mix at
96kHz, I get very little in the way of studio business from bats and other
fauna.


"Julian" <JulianPAdamsNo@SpamHotmail.Com> wrote in message
news:2537b19ak18jelfer75jg4qjqm3do2uk6n@4ax.com...
> On 17 Jun 2005 13:47:11 -0700, "Zerex71" <mfeher@stny.rr.com> wrote:
>
> >Greetings,
> >
> >I'm going to ask a dumb question here and perhaps someone can answer
> >it.
> >
> >When I look at my mp3s, I notice the bit rates tend to be 128 kbps or
> >higher. I remember during my Napster days, I wouldn't look for
> >anything lower than 128 kbps and would often try for 160 or 192 kbps
> >encoding.
>
> >But now I'm researching potential home studio gear, and am leaning very
> >heavily towards the Digi 002R/ProTools LE setup, and it tells me that
> >it has 24-bit/96 kHz sampling options.
> >
> >My question to the group (since it's Friday afternoon and I'm too lazy
> >to do any form of simple conversion) is, what is so special about 96
> >kHz encoding? How does that compare to the bit rates of my mp3s?
>
> Totally different. mp3's are like 128 kbps for example. CD quality
> is 44.1 kHz = 1,400 kbps, like 11 times more bandwidth. 24-bit 96 kHz
> is like 5,000 - 6,000 kbps or something (I'm too lazy to do the math
> too on Friday). 96/24 is over 40 times more bandwidth than 128 kbps
> mp3's. Not even close, dude!
>
> Julian
>
>
Related resources
Anonymous
June 19, 2005 3:01:18 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Do yourself and the world a favor and take the time to compare 24/96
and 16/44 digital recording. There is a noticable difference.

You may be suprised to discover that 24/96 digital recording sounds
much more accurate and natural than 16/44. The midrange is Much
smoother and fuller, highs more natural and less brittle. The
difference is less noticable in the lows but you can certainly hear
more definition and detail.

The big difference is clearly more dimension, depth and openess in the
sound. CDs sound 'in your face' and flat compared to good 24/96 digital
reocordings. And I find the sound much closer to high quality wide
format analog recordings.

In my opinion, if you record at 16/44 resolution, you're carrying water
with holes in your bucket.

But unfortunately today's listeners are likely to want to hear mp3s
regardless of how you record, so you can decide if the extra quality
effort is worth it. It certainly is to my ears.

24/96 Believer
Anonymous
June 19, 2005 12:48:01 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

24/96_Believer <vinylbeliever@hotmail.com> wrote:
>
>You may be suprised to discover that 24/96 digital recording sounds
>much more accurate and natural than 16/44. The midrange is Much
>smoother and fuller, highs more natural and less brittle. The
>difference is less noticable in the lows but you can certainly hear
>more definition and detail.

For the most part I found the opposite with the two converter systems
that I tried... they were definitely much more accurate (and measured
that way on a residual distortion test) at the lower rate than at the
higher rate.

If you're hearing stuff like that, I would seriously consider auditioning
some higher end converters.
--scott

--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
June 19, 2005 5:47:14 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

On 18 Jun 2005 23:01:18 -0700, "24/96_Believer"
<vinylbeliever@hotmail.com> wrote:

>Do yourself and the world a favor and take the time to compare 24/96
>and 16/44 digital recording. There is a noticable difference.

I won't dispute that, but the discussion has taken a detour here. the
OP was not asking about 16/44 vs 24/96, he was asking about 128kbps
mp3's vs 24/96!

Julian
Anonymous
June 19, 2005 6:11:09 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

In article <1119160878.612304.214390@g49g2000cwa.googlegroups.com> vinylbeliever@hotmail.com writes:

> Do yourself and the world a favor and take the time to compare 24/96
> and 16/44 digital recording. There is a noticable difference.

I don't think that you'll get a lot of disagreement here. The issue is
whether that difference is commercially marketable. Remember, vinyl
records, CDs, and high resolution audio DVDs are consumer products,
not engineer's working tools. The delivery format won't change until
the consumer industry is ready to push that change on consumers.

> The big difference is clearly more dimension, depth and openess in the
> sound. CDs sound 'in your face' and flat compared to good 24/96 digital
> reocordings. And I find the sound much closer to high quality wide
> format analog recordings.

Well, to some of us, it's just an improvement and we don't consider it
to be as dramatic as you do. But I thought that your point was that
CDs sounded so bad that even vinyl was better, and most of us will
disagree with you when comparing equally well (or poorly) produced
material.


--
I'm really Mike Rivers (mrivers@d-and-d.com)
However, until the spam goes away or Hell freezes over,
lots of IP addresses are blocked from this system. If
you e-mail me and it bounces, use your secret decoder ring
and reach me here: double-m-eleven-double-zero at yahoo
Anonymous
June 19, 2005 6:21:18 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Julian wrote:
> On 18 Jun 2005 23:01:18 -0700, "24/96_Believer"
> <vinylbeliever@hotmail.com> wrote:
>
> >Do yourself and the world a favor and take the time to compare 24/96
> >and 16/44 digital recording. There is a noticable difference.
>
> I won't dispute that, but the discussion has taken a detour here. the
> OP was not asking about 16/44 vs 24/96, he was asking about 128kbps
> mp3's vs 24/96!
>
> Julian

Sorry, I must be dyslexic. This is what I read in his post.

"what is so special about 96 kHz encoding? ...... As far as I know, if
standard CD sampling is 44.1 kHz, then 96 kHz must be pretty awesome,
but I'm looking for an exact correlation if possible, if anyone can
shed some light on this... Thanks very much."

I think you could find a few other threads here that have gotten
slighly more off topic. <g>

VB
Anonymous
June 19, 2005 6:58:16 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

<< If you're hearing stuff like that, I would seriously consider
auditioning some higher end converters.
--scott >>

My observations and conclusions are based on recording and comparing
identical source material at 16/44 and 24/96 into an Alesis HD24/96, an
Alesis Masterlink and through a Benchmark ADC into a laptop....(The
Alesis units have AKM 5393 converters. Not the best, but very good A/D
chips.)

To my ears, the better the equipment the more you hear the difference
in quality.

(And coincidentally that's the same conclusion that Paul Stamler came
to........ "I certainly heard things sound a lot better when I tried
out a Benchmark .... but one of the things I heard with that machine's
better resolution was that things still sounded poorer when they got
reduced to 16 bits.")

I believe that experienced ears here would come to the same conclusion
if they actaully sat down and compared the results. I've gotten a lot
of flames, but Paul is one of the few who has actually stated his own
observations, and not just spewed the math.

On the other hand, you are right that the public could care less.......
I do happen to care and enjoy the full sound of hi res. digital
recording.

24/96 Believer
Anonymous
June 19, 2005 7:13:49 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

24/96_Believer wrote:
> << If you're hearing stuff like that, I would seriously consider
> auditioning some higher end converters.
> --scott >>
>
> My observations and conclusions are based on recording and comparing
> identical source material at 16/44 and 24/96 into an Alesis HD24/96, an
> Alesis Masterlink and through a Benchmark ADC into a laptop....(The
> Alesis units have AKM 5393 converters. Not the best, but very good A/D
> chips.)
>
> To my ears, the better the equipment the more you hear the difference
> in quality.

Would you be willing or able to attempt this discrimination
in a double blind situation?


Bob
--

"Things should be described as simply as possible, but no
simpler."

A. Einstein
June 19, 2005 10:41:53 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

On 19 Jun 2005 14:21:18 -0700, "24/96_Believer"
<vinylbeliever@hotmail.com> wrote:


>Sorry, I must be dyslexic. This is what I read in his post.
>
>"what is so special about 96 kHz encoding? ...... As far as I know, if
>standard CD sampling is 44.1 kHz, then 96 kHz must be pretty awesome,
>but I'm looking for an exact correlation if possible, if anyone can
>shed some light on this... Thanks very much."

You left out the part: " what is so special about 96 kHz encoding?
How does that compare to the bit rates of my mp3s?".

To me it seems his question was a very basic one and implied he just
didn't understand the difference between mp3, CD quality and 24/96. I
thought none of the replies (except mine of course!~) addressed what
he needed to know,

>I think you could find a few other threads here that have gotten
>slighly more off topic. <g>

Heck yeah!

Since we are off topic, I have to say I was interested in your
listening experience comparing 16/44 to 24/96. I believe I would
share your view if I were younger and had better ears. I was working
in studios when "digital came out" and I certainly wasn't very
impressed by the resolution of 16/44 at that time. I suspect 24/96
sounds fantastic these days.

Julian
Anonymous
June 20, 2005 1:59:11 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Bob Cain <arcane@arcanemethods.com> wrote:
>24/96_Believer wrote:
>> << If you're hearing stuff like that, I would seriously consider
>> auditioning some higher end converters.
>>
>> My observations and conclusions are based on recording and comparing
>> identical source material at 16/44 and 24/96 into an Alesis HD24/96, an
>> Alesis Masterlink and through a Benchmark ADC into a laptop....(The
>> Alesis units have AKM 5393 converters. Not the best, but very good A/D
>> chips.)
>>
>> To my ears, the better the equipment the more you hear the difference
>> in quality.
>
>Would you be willing or able to attempt this discrimination
>in a double blind situation?

I find that it's easy to tell the difference on some converters, but harder
on others... and on some converters, it's pretty clear that the higher
rate sounds worse.

Since the only thing the high sampling rate buys you is extended frequency
response, a converter that is absolutely perfect should have no audible
difference between the two rates. Therefore any difference you hear (even
if it's an improvement) is a converter deficiency by definition.
--scott

--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
Anonymous
June 20, 2005 3:45:50 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

On 17 Jun 2005 13:47:11 -0700, "Zerex71" <mfeher@stny.rr.com> wrote:

>Greetings,
>
>I'm going to ask a dumb question here and perhaps someone can answer
>it.
>
>When I look at my mp3s, I notice the bit rates tend to be 128 kbps or
>higher. I remember during my Napster days, I wouldn't look for
>anything lower than 128 kbps and would often try for 160 or 192 kbps
>encoding.
>
>Now, that's all well and good. The sound quality is fabulous, and I
>usually wouldn't settle for anything less than 128.
>
>But now I'm researching potential home studio gear, and am leaning very
>heavily towards the Digi 002R/ProTools LE setup, and it tells me that
>it has 24-bit/96 kHz sampling options.
>
>My question to the group (since it's Friday afternoon and I'm too lazy
>to do any form of simple conversion) is, what is so special about 96
>kHz encoding? How does that compare to the bit rates of my mp3s? I am
>very very sure that such a high-end piece of digital recording gear
>would have no trouble pumping out awesome sound, but I am a tad
>confused on how I could relate the input sampling rate (and thus the
>maximum fidelity possible of the signal at any point in its chain or
>lifecycle) to the output of when I finally convert my finished product
>to an mp3.
>
>As far as I know, if standard CD sampling is 44.1 kHz, then 96 kHz must
>be pretty awesome, but I'm looking for an exact correlation if
>possible, if anyone can shed some light on this. Thanks very much.

Comparing '128k' to '96k' is comparing apples to oranges. A CD uses
PCM (the common audio recording format where each sample is a number
representing the signal's voltage at that instant) is 44,100 samples
per second, times 16 bits per sample, times two channels, for
1,411,200 bits per second. 128kbps Mp3 encoding compresses this by
about 10 to 1, to (presuming k = 1000) 128,000 bits per second. When
you play an mp3 it gets decoded back to PCM and sent to the A/D
converters at the CD rate, 16 bits of stereo at 44,100 times per
second. But these aren't the same bits as were on the CD - mp3 is a
lossy encoding format, and something that goes through mp3 compression
sounds a little bit different (or a lot different, depending on who
you ask) from the original CD.

By the way, encode some of your favorite music to 128k mp3's and
soend some time doing some critical comparing of the mp3 to the
original and see what different you can hear. I did that several years
back when my first impression was that mp3's sounded 'just as good' to
me, and found where I could hear the differences.

Let me quote this part again:

>But now I'm researching potential home studio gear, and am leaning very
>heavily towards the Digi 002R/ProTools LE setup, and it tells me that
>it has 24-bit/96 kHz sampling options.
>
>My question to the group (since it's Friday afternoon and I'm too lazy
>to do any form of simple conversion) is, what is so special about 96
>kHz encoding? How does that compare to the bit rates of my mp3s? I am

That's 24 bits times 96,000 samples/second, or 2,304,000 bits per
second for one channel, or 4,608,000 for stereo. It's about three
times the data rate of "CD quality."
But the difference in sound between CD's 16/44 and 24/96 recordings
is much less than that between 128k mp3's and 16/44. Thus, if you have
a hard time distinguishing between 128k mp3's and CD (16/44), you will
almost certainly be unable to tell the difference between 16/44 and
24/96.
But I'm not saying it's okay use the standard consumer soundcards
(which run at the 16/44 CD data rate), quite the contrary. The
converters and analog sections are generally so bad that they don't
come anywhere near what a good 16-bit system can do. Years ago I
bought an M-Audio Audiophile 2496 card (running it at 16/44) to record
LP's, because the consumer 16-bit soundcards I had been trying didn't
sound good enough.

>Mike

-----
http://www.mindspring.com/~benbradley
Anonymous
June 20, 2005 5:16:39 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Scott Dorsey wrote:

> Since the only thing the high sampling rate buys you is extended frequency
> response, a converter that is absolutely perfect should have no audible
> difference between the two rates. Therefore any difference you hear (even
> if it's an improvement) is a converter deficiency by definition.

FWIW, I believe this as well.


Bob
--

"Things should be described as simply as possible, but no
simpler."

A. Einstein
Anonymous
June 20, 2005 10:41:45 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

Thanks, guys! I'm sold. I think I got enough general insight into
this issue to satisfy me. I'm *hardly* an obsessive audiophile or
audio engineer of any sort, but I figure, if it's good enough for the
pros, it's good enough for me. I have no idea what sort of
recording/music room I'm going to end up with in the future, but I
think based on the conversations here, I get a good feeling about what
kind of quality I'm going to be able to expect. Largely, what I'd like
is a "wow factor", of being impressed by the sound of something I send
into the machine to produce a recording -- and that's why it usually
doesn't take much money or gear to achieve; however, I am auditorially
picky enough to notice things that sound thin or not full, and so I'm
willing to spend the bucks for what I'd consider is a "modest" setup to
achieve that goal.

Mike
Anonymous
June 21, 2005 1:22:54 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

"24/96_Believer" <vinylbeliever@hotmail.com> wrote:
>
> I believe that experienced ears here would come to the same
> conclusion if they actaully sat down and compared the results.


Not necessarily. Admittedly I have tried really high end converters,
but my comparisons revealed that the differences, if they existed at
all, were so slight as to be insignificant compared to other, MUCH more
serious isses. Like, moving a mic an inch makes WAY more difference.
Moving the monitors an inch or two in any direction makes way more
difference. The blood-to-beer ratio of the guitarist makes way more
difference. The number of people in the room makes way more difference.

My conclusion was not that no difference exists at all, but that the
so-called "improvement" is so trivial that it's barely deserving of
mention, nevermind the ridiculous hype the vested would have us believe.

Besides, do you honestly believe that people who do this for a living
are dismissing it without trying it? C'mon...

--
"It CAN'T be too loud... some of the red lights aren't even on yet!"
- Lorin David Schultz
in the control room
making even bad news sound good

(Remove spamblock to reply)
Anonymous
June 21, 2005 1:49:12 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

"Zerex71" <mfeher@stny.rr.com> wrote:
>
> My question to the group (since it's Friday afternoon and I'm too
> lazy to do any form of simple conversion) is, what is so special
> about 96 kHz encoding? How does that compare to the bit rates of my
> mp3s?


Comparing the bit-rate of mp3 to the sampling rate of a converter is
apples to oranges. I can explain why off-line of you want, but for now
just ignore the seemingly similar terminology. Either 44.1/16 or 96/24
should sound a helluvalot better than a 128 bit mp3. mp3 is a lossy
format, meaning that it discards data to reduce file size. Linear PCM,
which is what we're discussing in the case of CDs and the 002, doesn't.

The sample rate dictates the highest frequency you can record. The word
length (in bits) determines how many possible "loudness" values it can
store.

A standard CD has a sample rate of 44.1 kHz and 16 bit quantization. So
a CD will store sounds with frequency response up to about 22 kHz
(higher than all but the most amazing humans ever born can hear), with a
range from quietest to loudest of about 96 dB (enough range to induce
really serious pain and possibly even permanent damage if the quietest
part were turned up to the point where you could hear it).

The 002 you're looking at can sample at up 96 kHz / 24 bit. That makes
the theoretical maximum frequency it can record around 48 kHz -- more
than twice as high as any human has ever reliably reported being able
hear. With a 24 bit word length, it can store a range from quietest to
loudest of 144 dB. That doesn't really provide any benefit in and of
itself, but it does mean that you can record at a lower level overall
and still retain good quality.

Some people believe that the differences are quite audible. Others say
they aren't. Your ears will tell you which is true for you. For some,
the working plan is to capture raw material with as much data as
possible, with the idea that it will allow more accurate results after
processing (like mixing, compressing, equalizing, etc.).

--
"It CAN'T be too loud... some of the red lights aren't even on yet!"
- Lorin David Schultz
in the control room
making even bad news sound good

(Remove spamblock to reply)
February 11, 2012 1:03:29 PM

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