Won't I buy a new cd ever?

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi Stereo Systems & Separates' started by cribeiro, Jul 9, 2004.

  1. cribeiro

    cribeiro
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    Hi there. I am just reading an article of the Stereophile, and... well, just read it:

    http://www.stereophile.com/features/827/index2.html
    (this is page 3, but you might want to see it complete... Everything is there)

    I know a little about electronics and optics, although my field is nuclear physics... And I can tell you everything said there makes sense... But I have also heard good arguments for an idea that after a while proved wrong... It happens to me very often in my research!

    So, assuming that nowadays computers and cd burners are good enough to work error free with a digital signal, and that the burner is able to do perfect pits on the cd, the argument makes sense.
    Does this means that I have been an idiot for preferring my originals, and not the copies I have for my girfriend and car?

    PS: I have found something about this in a previous thread, but it is quite old, and in a different forum:

    http://www.avforums.com/frame.html?http://www.avforums.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=73
     
  2. karkus30

    karkus30
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    If you make a copy of the original disc, then the copy can only be inferior to the original. Strangely, even if you cleaned bits of the sound up and altered the timing to make it better, its still inferior because its not a clone of the original.

    Having not read the whole article its difficult to understand what they are concluding.

    The article mentions CD recording onto a PC as perfect because its pure digital to pure digital. Well it doesnt work like that, even if the transfer was perfect, you can still get differences in rotation speed and laser performance.

    But in reality its back to hi fi land, because the CD reader has no way of checking the fidelity of the recording against the disc content. It just reads the disc the best way it can, does error corrections on the bits that its not sure about and squirts it onto the Hard drive of the PC, it cant check on timing or accuracy (correct me if Im wrong but I dont believe music Cds or DVDs carry any form of checksums). Next it squirts the recorded data onto a disc, you would assume the rotation speed was approximately the same, but now you have the heating effects of the laser which must contribute to disc expansion at the very least (again I dont believe theres any form of accurate check carried out between the data on the copied disc and the data on the hard drive).

    Data discs are different as the amount of info. is not as great, so the computer can continually check that the disc data equals the computer data and the computer doesnt care about the disc speeding up and slowing down (infact you can hear it changing speeds as it reads the data).

    Correct me if Im talking complete ******, but thats the way I understand it.
     
  3. Andywilliams

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    Hi
    Not in to the technical side of things but using my own tabs i can easily tell the difference to a copied disc and the original the music sounds thinner not as good dynamics all my own opinion though.Only thing i have noticed when played on car stereos and my kids cheaper systems it is harder to tell the difference than when playing on my system.
    Cheers Gonzo.
     
  4. Stereo Steve

    Stereo Steve
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    I would concur. a straight copy made with clone CD on my high end PC sounds slightly less dynamic than the original article. I'm sure I'm not hearing things.
     
  5. mjn

    mjn
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    i say there is no difference between originals and copies made with a Cd burner, where no analogue stage is used.
     
  6. karkus30

    karkus30
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    and you base this on..........................or just because you said it, then it must be right?
     
  7. alexs2

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    I'd say that there is plenty of evidence that your statement is simply incorrect,and a good example is when the copy is made using a burner with moderate to high intrinsic jitter levels.

    A lot of Martin Collom's published work on that topic would back this up.

    If the replay equipment either masks this,or isn't sufficiently revealing in the first place,then obviously it won't be apparent.
     
  8. booktrunk

    booktrunk
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    mjn might be wrong... but he said in his opinion they are as good, and others have just said in their opinion they are not as good....

    Seems to me just one opinion against another... so those that say he needs to prove this surely need to prove their point of view as well?

    Personally... Thinking tradionally they should be worst, but thinking digitally I don't see any reason they aren't as good as the original. Also ... isan't copying CD's except possibly for a backup copy illegal, so a moot point in the first place :devil:

    Steff

    EDIT: Also with regard to burning, those that say they sound more "muffled" for a better term, are they burn back onto a CD-R at single speed or 16x etc... that can make a difference depending on the burner. Also... ? are CD-Rs worst at being read then a CD as the wave length has to be slightly different doesn't it?
     
  9. alexs2

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  10. Stereo Steve

    Stereo Steve
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    I make backups for use in my office of CD's I have bought. I don't see how this could be illegal, but maybe it is. Either way I do buy originals. I don't think they should push too hard on this issue as I feel agreived as it is that we have to pay more for our music than other countries only because we will.

    As it is, the only way to make sure you get a good recording is to buy the original. Even a high bit rate download can sound naff if it's done badly (so I'm told :devil: ).

    The standard argument for copies sounding the same is that it's digital so simply a string of 0's and 1's. This is true but there is plenty of error correction technology to allow scope for those 1's and 0's to end up in a different order on the copy.


    I maintain that I can tell the difference on my system and I tried today to prove it. Didn't do it blind but I'm sure there were perceptable differences that I could hear between the two. I formed this conclusion myself a while back after initially thinking that copies should be perfect and being dissapointed. Maybe my copying hardware is not so hot as some and they get copies much closer to the original. I do burn at max speed.
     
  11. overkill

    overkill
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    I use a digital link to make copies - and the copies are still inferior. The copied disk do often lack dynamics, and often have poor high frequency reproduction compared to the original. It's actually pretty easy to check using good recording software. It's not a matter of opinion, the differences are there.

    I've seen the same views as Stereophile are making here espoused about fifteen years ago in HI-FI Choice. Alvin Gold made a few sceptical post review comments even then.

    There are so many variables, including the software itself, which, as various test have shown, do vary considerably in recording quality, that the "it's only 0 & 1's" argument doesn't hold.
     
  12. whiteflyer

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    I belive copies are inferior to original CD, but I must agree with the copying speed point above. The slower you copy/burn the better the sound seems to be. On the very rare :devil: times I copy I do it at 1 time speed.

    Just to throw a spanner in the works, will the type of CD-R make a differents, ie cheap 20p silver disc V a more expensive gold disc
     
  13. cribeiro

    cribeiro
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    Some years ago (6-7), one guy working with computers told me that there was a huge difference between a cheap burner and a good one, and same for recordable cd's. He used some device to check how good did the copy resembled the original, and made the tests with some burners and cd's... I don't know the details, and I don't know how is the market today...

    I think I believe all that the article says about reproduction of cd's, but I don't believe about recording... They talk about recording a cd with a cd burner as completely error free, while they blame stampers for bad original cd's... I achieved a conclusion that satisfies my scientifical point of view, as well as my naive/intuitive expectations... Everything theoretically seen from my part, but also based on your "experimental" opinions... Well, I am a theorist after all.
    Now I only need some hours alone at home before my girfriend comes, to see if my ears agree... Will I ever get these hours? :)
     
  14. Nimby

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    You can't even get original full price CDs to match in sound quality!

    I have a CD of an original artist that sounds fabulous.

    On a full price compilation album of similar genre artists it sounds very fuzzy in comparison.

    I was playing the compilation album when I thought there was a problem with my system and started checking cables. Until I remembered I had that track on an original artist CD. That proved to be very much better sound quality.

    I like the compilation album material a great deal. But buying a seperate CD of every track by every artist (if it were even possible) would be an expensive option just to make a quality comparison.

    Nimby
     
  15. mjn

    mjn
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    i backup my original disks using a 4x burner, doing a bit for bit copy. i've done a comparison between the two discs, and i cannot tell the difference.

    Not saying there isn't a difference, but my ears cannot tell the difference.
     
  16. bobbypunk

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    This is coming from no knowledge at all on the subject, But
    Yamaha's CD recorder the CDRHD1300 claims to put the information back onto the disc at a higher quality than the original.
    Is it true?
    How can it be true?
    Surely there must be some scientific back up for them to make this claim!
     
  17. alexs2

    alexs2
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    Looking at their info,it doesn't so much claim to put information back onto the disc at higher quality,as "raising recording quality to the level of professionally prepared music CD's".
    This they claim to do by using more of the CD-R disc space for longer pits/lands on the disc....they also claim to reduce jitter significantly,which may well have an audible effect if the incoming levels were sufficiently high.

    The end result would be as good a recording/copy as the machine's own intrinsic jitter levels and DAC/ADC quality will allow.
     
  18. Ed Selley

    Ed Selley
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    I think that its rubbish (and I own one) but it does seem to minimise the loss in the recording. Plus it finalises the recording automatically allowing me more time to scratch myself :laugh:.
     
  19. overkill

    overkill
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    LOL!! With what.............? Seriously Tons, what's it like recording wise as the reviews were pretty mixed? Cheers.
     
  20. Ed Selley

    Ed Selley
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    Coming from a Marantz DR6000 that died from overwork, it is very, very good. In my home enviroment I cannot tell the difference between one of the AMQR burns (the fancy yamaha title for what bobbypunk was describing) and the original is non existent. In the listening room (which cost more to sound insulate than everything I've got below did) they are ever so slightly softer. The normal burns are easier to tell apart but no worse than the DR6000, PDR609 et al. What is most suprising is that "analogue" recordings ie ones that leave a copy on the HD (they are erased if a digital copy is made) are about 99.5% as good as the digital ones which is handy if you'd like to keep a copy on the drive.
    Beyond this, the sheer convenience of the HD is the killer and would make it very hard to change to a unit that didn't have one even if the record quality was better. Besides, mine was a cost +vat job off RS so was a bit of a steal.
     
  21. CJROSS

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    Steve,

    I would just add my personal opinion & experience to this thread that I cannot tell the difference between an original CD & a PC burned CDR (Sony CDRW-Roxio Easy CD creator 5 Platinum – Uncomped WAVs @ 2x burn speed-TDK CDRs) and the original CD, that of course is when I was listening blind. When I have my eyes are in the auditory sense equation (ie me putting a CDR in the tray) well then I “knew” that the copy “was” inferior and this has honestly clouded my judgement as it “sounded” inferior – more like I knew it was a copy and was pre-disposed to dislike it being a hardened audiophile conditioned by years of hype from the press/industry about CDR quality. But hey that just me YMMV.

    This belief is after testing what I would call “reference” recordings that I have made for use in the car CD player like many top quality :

    AAD recordings & quite a few HDCDs that I own, compared in the main system and switched over by SWMBO without my knowledge (a very simple blind a/b test if ever there was one) I simply cannot differeniate the 2 in all honesty. FWIW both sound stunning to me if Ive bothered to make a CDR copy – there is not an inferior copy at all.

    There is more to what you “think” your hearing IMHO, ie we are all governed by pre-belief in some way about audio I believe, I will happily admit that the only way I can cut out this pre-belief is to make my judegments blind, its worked wonder for me in cabling terms (ie if I know a nice DIY pure silver IC is in my system, then Im happy. But change that out with a £20 dealer bought IC and Im instantly negative about the sound from my system – blind it all dissappears without a word of a lie – I cant tell the difference at all), don’t think Im a lone voice in that respect there are plenty of people coming round to a sea-change in audio belief due to blind listening, give it a try you have nothing to lose (the music still sounds as good as ever) and if you can pick out the differences in cables (ICs) and CDRs over originals then your amongst the bar-eard of the audiophile world.

    ATB dudes & of course all IMHO.

    Oh as for Yamahas claims that their recorder makes better copies than the original :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: Has RA taken over their marketing dept.
    :clap: :clap: :clap: Ive heard some funny things in my time but that ...
     
  22. Nimby

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    Never a truer word spoken (well written anyway)

    My wife started testing my ability to hear differences at the height of my hifi modding days. She got fed up with me going on (and on) about my latest magical improvement on top of the last and the one before that. It started with record clamps and moved on to cables.

    Don't buy a thing before your wife has done a blind A/B swap for you. Parrticularly on simply changed things like interconnect cables, record clamps, mats, isolation pads, etc.

    Even major component changes like turntables can be tested A/B with a simple cable and record swap if the units are near each other.

    A new CD/DVD player can be easily swapped for the old provided the cables are easily accessible and the swaps rehearsed.

    Reversing components in the rack often helps. Getting her to completely rewire and calibrate a multi-channel A/V set up might take bit more training though. :devil:

    If every hifi/AV nut had a well trained wife nobody would ever upgrade! :D

    Just think how much more 'software' you could afford! :smashin:

    Nimby
     
  23. Radiohead

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    Surely the only way to ensure you get a good recording is to buy the actual masters. After all, you have no idea what quality of CD you're buying with an original. And, of course, the "original" you're buying is a copy anyway - made with god knows what.
     
  24. nikyzf

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    Actually, if you read the Stereophile article that started this off and accept its contents, then it might be possible...

    However, this then leads me to ask: if a CD Recorder can produce a copy with lower jitter than the original, such that the copy sounds better, then why can the DACs in CD players not do this very dejittering as a routine process before doing the conversion? Then all CDs with identical digital content SHOULD sound identical.
     
  25. cribeiro

    cribeiro
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    Good point. I was also thinking the same... but I thought I am missing something... The article talks about "bit is bit" in the cd recording, while it doesn't for any other purpose. Maybe we are missing something...?
     
  26. CJROSS

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    Hey Nik

    Im not up for accepting its contents or believing its possible bro, Ive read up on this before there is more on the net about it (but a good place to read is Audioasylum or a search on Google for jitter), before we go any further I should say Im more than sceptical (read incredulously scpetical) on the “effects” jitter has on : CDRs now come on !!, coaxial digital cables, digital connections, CD/DVD transports & DACs as you have most wisely noted why is this “difference in jitter” not handled by the conversion stages (it is BTW IMO) and lets break this down we are being told that, jitter is stored in the copy in some fashion, I mean its complete and utter balderdash IMHO. Digital data is digital data, there is nothing missing or added, if it was missing this would be evident to you as a skip/sound dropout etc etc from the error detection of the transport not being able to do its job. but its all there, if jitter is so bad in a signal or from a CDR, then your DAC would not lock onto it. But it does every time, and FWIW if it was as described so noticable it would be easily detectable in a blind test would you not agree ?. Until these mags & reviewers (usually peddlers in cable mythics & tweakery galore) commit to some sort of blind testing then their “findings” or nothing more than personal opinion or supposition. But it becomes “fact” or “truth” in audiophile circles for a reason known not to me.

    If as I have found and IMPE when I listen blind why on earth cant I pick the CDR (or original) with the lower jitter spec every time ?. Its crazy supposition (hype) on the press’s part, its keeps the whole audiophile bandwagon rolling along with a whole new bunch of recruits who buy into these madcap ideas, when quite simply to many audiophiles like me, there simply is nothing “wrong” in the first place.

    One of the things this discussion is central to (ie comparing 2 CDs an original & a CDR) is auditory memory something that’s worth exploring in these threads from HFCs forum.

    http://forum.hifichoice.co.uk/viewtopic.php?t=10323
    http://forum.hifichoice.co.uk/viewtopic.php?t=10645

    ATB dudes and all IMHO of course.
     
  27. Stereo Steve

    Stereo Steve
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    Yeah CJ, that's why I mentioned the lack of a blind test as I'm aware of the various effects our minds play. THe only thing I have blind tested with any success is CAT5 cables which I could consistantly tell from mains T+E and various under a tenner cables I had about (Coulnd't tell any of the others apart).

    I use an Asus CDRW drive and cheapo dabs CDR's burnt at full speed so I guess I'm asking for trouble. I have just bought 50 Sony CD'Rs and I plan to try to copy a disk at 1/1 and see how it goes.

    A blind test is a good idea and I think I'll do one at max speed, one at low speed and blind test against the original.

    The main thing that leads me to believe my hardware is at fault is that a CD ripped onto my HD sounds great through the USB sound device I have but if I burn it, I definately lose something when put back into the CD player.
     
  28. overkill

    overkill
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    Even listening blind you can tell the difference between the original and a copied disk. If you can't hear it then that's down to your ears. ;) A good way of telling is to use Sonic foundry, copy the original than study the copy against it. You'll find that if you use certian effects they sound closer. This wouldn't be possible if there were no audible differences to start with. Just my two cents worth............... :D
     
  29. CJROSS

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    :rolleyes: :rotfl:
     
  30. nikyzf

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    I did say "if...". I too am sceptical about all this. It's just that there has been so much written about this, plus alleged differences in the sound between CD/DVD transports (not DACs) that I wonder if the journos can all be deluded/lying ;o) I accept that DACs are likely to sound different because of what's involved in reconstructing the analogue signal, but when it comes to digits I struggle to make sense of it.

    I've certainly read some weird "subjective" stuff in hi-fi mags. In an issue of Hi-Fi+, the editor claimed that some effects are just beyond measurement and you can't always explain them, let alone measure them (I'm with him so far), but then goes on to claim (honest!) that wine tastes different depending on which way you swirl it round the glass, and that furthermore, the hemisphere it came from dictates which direction is best. :laugh:

    Hold on, I'd better check to see if that was the April issue. :D

    I agree with what several have said: blind (preferably double-blind) tests are the only answer.

    I wonder, should there a Sticky thread for this whole subjective/objective topic?
     

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