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Young people prefer sound of MP3

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Don't know if everybody saw this:


The Sizzling Sound of Music.


Jonathan Berger, professor of music at Stanford ... tests his incoming students each year ... He has them listen to a variety of recordings which use different formats from MP3 to ones of much higher quality. He described the results with some disappointment and frustration, as a music lover might, that each year the preference for music in MP3 format rises. In other words, students prefer the quality of that kind of sound over the sound of music of much higher quality. He said that they seemed to prefer "sizzle sounds" that MP3s bring to music. It is a sound they are familiar with.


16/44.1 source material, ripped via EAC to WAV. Linux (Fedora 10) machine -> USB -> Headroom Desktop Headphone Amp (Max DAC, Max module) -> Sennheiser HD650

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.... I saw a news article early last month on Prof. Berger's study. Pretty disheartening to me, but then I don't know fully how he is arriving at his conclusion. I later went and found Prof. Berger on the web, but no reference to this particular study was there yet. I'd like to read the paper - if there is one. Maybe it isn't yet complete/published?




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I can think of a few analogies that will put this in perspective.


McDonald's serves 47 million people per day. Even though the food is crap, it tastes good at the time.


Bose is in the top five most trusted brand names for home-electronics in the US. Again, it may appeal to the masses, but it's crap on the inside.


So, before we all get depressed about the death of high fidelity, let's go for a burger ;)


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