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People need some education in MP3 / Compression lack of quality

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi Stereo Systems & Separates' started by BUGANNA, Jul 17, 2005.

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  1. BUGANNA

    BUGANNA
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    there seems to be a massive lack on understanding on compressed audio

    everytime I hear comments like " at high bitrate MP3 can sound pretty much identical to WAV "

    I just cringe up and die...............

    for peoples information, one must consider WHY the existing 44-khz digital recording quality was chosen for CD

    basically, the record companies wanted a compromise between sound quality and cd physical size

    it is a fact, that the current 16-bit cd tech., is not actually very high fidelity

    recording engineers, state that you can hear difference all the way up. up to 24-bit sampling rate

    24-bit is massively bigger than 16-bit, the CD would have to be the size of a laser-disc or more, to fit all the data

    SO , they went for 16-bit..............decent quality, nice size CD

    SO for anyone who thinks, that reducing a WAV file, to 10-20% of its original size, will still have decent quality, well, they need to think again

    and listen again (!)

    if this was the case, Philips wouldve designed a little 2" CD, that would be very cute, cheaper to make, less quality control , etc etc

    but they didnt as they didnt think the quality was good enough

    yet now-adays most people think MP3 is brilliant !

    hmmmm, I wonder if they had to pay for thier MP3 if they would still say the same comments

    seems people fool themselves into believing anything, so long as something is FREE !!!!

    wake up and smell the coffee......................if this goes on, there will be no more high fidelity left, just tiny compressed files, full of massive copyprotection algorythms

    the future is bleak...................
     
  2. alexs2

    alexs2
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    You've made a very good point here,and one which has been coming up a lot recently in the high end HiFi press as well.

    DRM and the proliferation of mobile players(MP3 and iPod related)has opened the floodgates to a deluge of relatively low-fi formats,all of which are aimed at the portable and similar markets.

    I think you may well find that a lot of people think MP3 is good simply because they've not actually heard anything better,something with the dynamic range and qaulity that even CD is capable of,let alone vinyl or 24 bit systems.
     
  3. MarkE19

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    excuse me, but what gives you the right to tell others what they can and can't claim to be good, bad or indifferent! Some people simply cannot hear the difference in sound quality, or just want music in the background and therefore the overall sound quality is not important to them.
    For me MP3 offers some advantages. I work in a computer room doing 12 hour shifts and I don't want to carry loads of CD's to & from the office. I just carry a 20Gb MP3 player and have my complete CD collection available. Played on a set of PC speakers I can't tell the difference between the MP3's and the origional CD's. But look at my kit list in my sig and you will see that I have some fairly high end kit as at home I do want the best quality I can afford and would never consider connecting the MP3 player to it. As a part time sound engineer sound quality is very important to me.

    MP3 has it's place, but I do agree it should never be allowed to replace higher quality media.

    Mark.
     
  4. BUGANNA

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    the fact that "hi fi" , means high fidelity - I would think states the case.....

    what gives the hi-fi mags to say whats good or not ?

    or me ? or anyone else ?

    quite clearly, one can hear and measure sound 'quality' quite easily.....

    no one is saying mp3 isnt ok for portables, but my argument was, that once people start saying its as good as 16-bit CD ( and the majority of mp3 downloaders think it is )

    then this is where it gets scary............

    a similar phenomina is with LCD / PLASMA tvs,

    quite clearly, they are far inferior to CRT Tvs in image quality - they are not even close, and not watchable in my opinion, unless u dont mind digital artefacts, low contrast and motion blur..............( i do mind, and essentially CRTs still exist, so no reason for me to invest in inferior tech )

    its the same comparison as MP3 / Cds

    high tech , doesnt always mean, high quality

    and in MP3 / Plasma instances, its very much inferior
     
  5. BUGANNA

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    Never a truer word spoken.................
     
  6. alexs2

    alexs2
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    Like yourself,I use a 30Gb compressed player(an iPod)for portable music,and it does have it's place,obviously,but as you've also said,it can never replace higher quality media,nor should it ever be allowed to.

    I think that Buganna's point was that there is a real possibility of music becoming available in copy protected/limited bandwith formats only,as the number of users increases,and if CD sales slide.

    Certainly,using equipment of limited capabilities for playback(PC speakers etc,and a lot of low-end HiFi...please don't all take that as a dig at lower cost gear BTW)many of us will be hard-pressed to tell the difference between MP3/WAV/Apple lossless etc and raw CD,but as you've noted,when you go home,it's good to be able to enjoy the music at something like the fidelity you should be able to approach.
     
  7. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes
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    why isn't this posted in the MP3 section, I would have thought this section has the 'more informed' members on MP3 but the MP3 users are the ones needing 'more education'?
     
  8. eviljohn2

    eviljohn2
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    The current 16-bit technology is capable of very high fidelity - the problem is that generally it isn't utilised through poor recording and mixing processes. A true redbook or HDCD (which extrapolate extra data to 20-bit as I'm sure you know) sound stunning and in many ways sound better than the vinyl counterpart as they have a lower noise floor and are less prone to damage.

    I'm not trying to say that we should all stick with CD and be happy as the higher fidelity digital formats are certainly better given a good recording, nor do I want to see all of the formats disappear into compressed solid-state media but they all have advantages and disadvantages. I personally much favour the convenience of CD (skip, FFWD, RWD, shuffle, display times etc) over the more tactile experience of vinyl which many of my friends prefer. :)
     
  9. phalaris

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    MP3 is identical to WAV as long as the quality of your output is low. Most people, believe it or not, do not have separates hi-fi system (GASP!) and use "normal" CD players with speakers.
    With the quality of the sound actually coming out of the speakers being so low it simply trims off the difference between mp3 (even at 128kbps) and high quality wav files... which leaves one factor intact: FILE SIZE.

    MP3 is a format for the masses, and I will once again remind you that the masses are not audiophiles. MP3 sells. End of story.
     
  10. BUGANNA

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    err, NO it isn't !

    who told u that ?

    low quality, is low quality. period.

    why are people choosing to have low quality systems ?

    a decent quality hi-fi, can be had for as little as £ 200 new
     
  11. alexs2

    alexs2
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    phalaris actually has a good point,in that when the resolution of the playback equipment(software included),is low,then it really doesnt matter what format is used,as you won't be able to tell.


    The other point is also true....MP3 and other compressed formats are for convenience,mass use,and they certainly sell,probably to the ultimate detriment of high quality sources.
     
  12. alexs2

    alexs2
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    Thread now being closed as there is a duplicate opened in the MP3 section by Buganna today.
     
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