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What the heck is up with Records -> ADC -> 24/96 or DSD!!!! It is soooooo good.


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So maybe a year ago I pulled down some tracks from the whole torrent thing*, which consisted of some Pink Floyd that someone had ADC'd themselves and posted. I downloaded it, but let it sit for a long time on my NAS because of all of the metadata work I'd have to do to really import it properly into JRiver.

 

So, I played it tonight. I have to say........ I'm shocked. This is better..... Better than..... Everything......

 

WHAT THE HECK??????

 

I even bought the Jazz at the Pawnshop in 2XDSD, the 2XDSD from Opus, and various other tracks. 2NLo or whatever, all kinds of test tracks from multiple places, Stereophile, lots of others.

 

And nothing even comes close. I heard sound that somehow sounded a full 5 feet or more wider than I've gotten from my soundstage before. I've got the same tracks, lets say DSofM, in multiple formats and none of the other ones are even close.

 

My wife is not a audiophile at all and catches around 50% of the A/B 'can you hear a difference' things that I claim I can hear, and she immediately sat up in her chair 15 seconds in and said, "What is going on? What did you change? How did you do that?" Her eyes were really big.

 

 

 

Now, look, I know a bit about things like 2nd order and 3rd order distortion and bass bloat from certain analog sources, and this isn't any of that. This is better in *every* sense. The detail - which you might think would suffer if all we are talking about is adding nTh order distortions, but many of the guitar strums, drum beats, etc. sound more accurate, more detailed and with more nuance. The issue where on one system you get the sense of which drum exactly it is, vs a generic drum sound you could download from Alesis. Complex passages were better. Softer passages were better. The one track I didn't like, though, was Eclipse. With the extra women singing and all of the things going on I don't know if his ADC was overcome with the complex sounds, or if there was extra high frequency distortion in his process that otherwise wasn't detectable, but that one was actually not pleasant to listen to. Every other track was mind blowing.

 

 

So what is the deal? If you have an analog master tape and go though a Korg, Pyramix, Meitner, or Sonoma straight to 2X DSD you should have the 'best' possible sound in todays world, right? Or DXD if that is your thing? (I personally assume DSD is better based on my listening tests, but lets try not to get into that too much, and I haven't a/b'd DXD with 4XDSD. What I mean is in to 'some high-end format'.)

 

So the audio companies should be able to provide that, no? Is that what they are providing?

 

 

If they aren't doing that, why aren't they?

And possibly, more interesting, if they are, why is master tape -> record -> ADC -> hirez format -> computer better?

 

 

 

Oh, and it did have very audible fuzz and the occasional pop and click from being from a record. You have to commit to ignoring that ahead of time.

 

I'd be happy to post 2 or 3 of the tracks from DSotM if that is okay. I'm not sure if it is okay, though, and don't know how here, I can certainly put it somewhere and provide the links but then I'm distributing something I don't own. Maybe if I make them 30-second clips? Maybe it doesn't matter providing clips, I have read here that others are finding that turntable -> ADC -> 2XDSD is providing something that does maintain all of the quality of the turntable process.

 

This whole thing was so mind blowing I think as a community we should figure out what is going on here - anyone else having similar experiences? I'm totally confused at this point.......

 

If this ends up with me buying a turntable and listening to records I'm going to get really mad at someone. I don't know who, but they are going to be in big trouble!!!!

 

 

(* - note - btw, I'm not going to say where I got it from because I suppose it is illegal, however minor. I'm not actually sure if it is really or not, because I've bought the CDs for essentially all of that music, maybe I missed one of the 1967 ones, so I'm not sure where I stand. Would I have to buy the records, too to be covered? I'm willing to do that. But anyway just to say, if you want to find it I'm sure you can but I'm not going to participate.)

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FWIW I found some comments on how the records was made, I believe I am listening to a home adc of the Harvest 30th anniversary UK record with these comments about the process:

 

 

30th anniversary edition. Remastered by Doug Sax and Kevin Gray of AcousTech Mastering at RTI in Camarillo, California using the original (Dolby A) master tape and a tube playback machine. No high-frequency limiting was added to the mastering (reportedly this was the first time this was ever done). For the cutting, Doug Sax handled levels and fades, Arnie Acosta and Joel Plante made the EQ changes, and Kevin Gray ran the lathe. After mastering was completed at RTI, the metal lacquers were sent to Holland for pressing.

 

I don't think I can find out what the record player or ADC used is, which would be great to know. In the file metadata some tracks indicate EAC is used:

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exact_Audio_Copy

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If someone had a good record of Led Zepplin and really good equipment to do a 2XDSD or at least 24/96 transfer that would be a good use case, because there are recent supposedly well-done remasters to 24/96 done by the studios. So we can compare 'end user 10 - 15k turntable to 1 - 2k adc (is better needed there?)' to 'studio transfer'. That would be very interesting - I guess that is what I'm saying we should test.

 

Led Zep and Rush have done remasters to 24/96, but no Pink in that manner yet. I've heard about some box set with BluRay that can be converted to 24/96, but I don't have any of that myself.

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My 2 cents

 

The vinyl disc was made from the master tape in the late 60's over 40 years ago

 

All of the new digital remasters were made off the same analog tapes some 30 years later, but the SQ of the master tapes has deteriorated due to print through, demagentization etc

 

I have compared 45 rpm 180 gm vinyl to DSD 64 made from the same analog master tape during the same remastering session, and let me assure you that the DSD is way way ahead in SQ, leaving the vinyl in the dust

 

Suggest you check out some of the needle drops done from the vinyl in the BNF (French National Library) which you can buy and download from Qobuz. The sound quality of some of these needle drops is pretty amazing

Sound Test, Monaco

Consultant to Sound Galleries Monaco, and Taiko Audio Holland

e-mail [email protected]

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Hi,

 

Although I would be able to write a page or two about this, it would be senseless because of talk which goes right against your ideas about this all. So let me stick to this :

 

The graphs you showed show heavy aliasing, or super distortion for that matter. And no, I am not referring to the graininess in the graphs.

 

That is really all !

Peter

(sorry)

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You'll most probably get an even better SQ with an official DSD release.

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Hi,

 

Although I would be able to write a page or two about this, it would be senseless because of talk which goes right against your ideas about this all. So let me stick to this :

 

The graphs you showed show heavy aliasing, or super distortion for that matter. And no, I am not referring to the graininess in the graphs.

 

That is really all !

Peter

(sorry)

 

Are you referring to the parallel (horizontal) lines. I'm trying to understand how to interpret these graphs.

 

"The function of music is to release us from the tyranny of conscious thought", Sir Thomas Beecham. 

 

 

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You'll most probably get an even better SQ with an official DSD release.

 

Some of the Analog Master Tape to DSD transfers by Kevin Gray and Gus Skinas over on Acoustic Sounds of classic Jazz and Pop albums certainly prove the "What The Heck" comment! Ditto for the Analog to DSD and DSD downloads on Native DSD, DSD File and Blue Coast/Downloads Now.

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Okay, let's see:

 

EuroDriver, that would make total sense, but you'll notice in my third comment the source of the vinyl is the 30th anniversary re-print. I have heard in regards to what you are saying I remember hearing either the Pink Floyd or Led Zep guys have listened to their old master tapes and said the bass was a bit lower. I will definitely look at the BNF stuff you suggest.

 

PeterST - While we don't need a massive writeup I'm good with a bit more info. Also, you say the 'graphs' - not graph, so the first one is CD to flac and the 2nd is vinyl to flac. So I'm less interested in what is common between them and more interested in what is different. I do hear what you are saying about super-distortion, and that was one of my guesses in the original post, but allow me to ask if super-distortion can bring forward more information about how an instrument sounds? I intuitively agree that distortion could add ambience, soundstage, rythm, and a pleasantness, but don't currently understand how it could be more accurate. Maybe the issue is the record as analog has more info *and* distortion. And graininess, do you mean the png or what the graph is telling you? I can provide those at any resolution or a file if that helps.

 

YashN - that is exactly the question at hand. How do we prove it with recordings? Led Zep, while not DSD, would allow us to compare a vinyl rip to a recent source to hi-rez studio rip.

 

bmoura, I have a bunch of those, want to point me to one or two in particular? I know Kind of Blue and a few others have been released in 30 different ways.

 

kurb1980 - definitely could be part of the equation.

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Some of the Analog Master Tape to DSD transfers by Kevin Gray and Gus Skinas over on Acoustic Sounds of classic Jazz and Pop albums certainly prove the "What The Heck" comment! Ditto for the Analog to DSD and DSD downloads on Native DSD, DSD File and Blue Coast/Downloads Now.

 

Not saying the contrary, just saying that an official release should usually be better than something coming from an unknown source, home-made, probably not very well made.

 

Actually, I do my own Redbook to DSD 2x at home, but if I had the opportunity of getting official DSD releases, I would rather do that.

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YashN - that is exactly the question at hand. How do we prove it with recordings? Led Zep, while not DSD, would allow us to compare a vinyl rip to a recent source to hi-rez studio rip.

 

Personally, I would choose to buy an official DSD release, provided the provenance is as close to either live or the master tape as possible instead of getting a vinyl rip nowadays.

 

This way, you get none of the distortions that vinyl has.

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EuroDriver, that would make total sense, but you'll notice in my third comment the source of the vinyl is the 30th anniversary re-print.

 

Could well be they did a good job on the remastering and improving the mix for the 30th anniversay release, except for the remix of the Eclipse track which you don't like

Sound Test, Monaco

Consultant to Sound Galleries Monaco, and Taiko Audio Holland

e-mail [email protected]

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PeterST - While we don't need a massive writeup I'm good with a bit more info. Also, you say the 'graphs' - not graph, so the first one is CD to flac and the 2nd is vinyl to flac. So I'm less interested in what is common between them and more interested in what is different. I do hear what you are saying about super-distortion, and that was one of my guesses in the original post, but allow me to ask if super-distortion can bring forward more information about how an instrument sounds? I intuitively agree that distortion could add ambience, soundstage, rythm, and a pleasantness, but don't currently understand how it could be more accurate. Maybe the issue is the record as analog has more info *and* distortion. And graininess, do you mean the png or what the graph is telling you? I can provide those at any resolution or a file if that helps.

 

Nice task. ;)

 

The graininess is not related and anyway is not about the png quality. That's just Audacity settings, so no worries there (I tried to tell).

 

The remainder is not easy, with the notice that *all* of my reasoning has to depend on what you call "accuracy" as such, and what that is worth. So I am not here to tell you that what you call accuracy is actually the opposite. But it is key factor because if that really would be so, then what to say further ...

 

Accuracy, first off, can only be observed in well fashion through a system which is inherently that (say very accurate is very fast is very high resolving). So first I'd "need" to say is that possibly (no probably) your system is not that all so much. Remember, here too, no accusation of systems, but better look there than into your ears. OK.

 

So with the accuracy thing out of the way (say you didn't mention that at all), what will you perceive from severe ringing.

All right, nobody says it is that, but let's say that the way too high frequencies I see (vinyl graph) spring from improperly filtered. The real reason is maybe not important, but the false frequencies are. Now whether ringing or just false harmonics, they will "add" to the sound. And since I called it Aliasing in the first place - those too high frequencies fold back in the audio band. So they add there. However, not with a real harmonic relation. So for example, if at 32050Hz such a false harmonic is playing (10000Hz above the nyquist limit, for now 22050 assumed (half of the sampling rate of 44100)), this plays also at 22050 - 10000 = 12050. And yes, as you can see I tried to make an example with some easy calculations, while your DSOTM is 96KHz and thus the nyquist limit is 48KHz. So make up your own example so it reflects that.

 

It requires some more math to reason out where the 32050 comes from in the first place (but is there because not filtered out for the 44100 assumed sampling rate (remember, yours is 96000)), but say that the in-band 12050 anomaly coming from it, originally was 8050Hz. For comfort, now think that when the 8050 glides to 9050, the 12050 glides along to 11050. Thus, something like this will be in order. This will create a vibrant sound, which also will change level and "flanges". For that, think that gliding the 9050 more upwards will glide the 11050 more downwards and at some stage both will meet in the same frequency, and will add. So now you'll have something emphasized.

Of course it is not so easy as I present it, because when real music plays, 1000s of frequencies will play at the same time, and they all interact in some way - in this case a wrong way.

 

If you are as far as believing this and understand somewhat, the least you can say is that this will change the sound vastly, compared to something which has been decently filtered. So this could be one answer and it could be sufficient.

 

I gave the example of first-mentioned 12050Hz - and this was because this is such a high frequency already, that "we" can locate better. So, what I say is : a 12050Hz can be far more easily located than e.g. 5000Hz. This has to do with steeper phase angle differences for the higher frequencies and such and ... just believe me on that for now. Point is : the 12050 was not there originally, but since it now is it will create additional spaciousness. This is just because you can locate all those sounds better (uhm, compared to the CD version, say). The "vibrant" (which is what I tell you, and you not to us) springs from the all over changing frequency interactions and since they are not genuine(ly there in the original) they will float very fast, at least from left to right. But depth just the same. So notice : far more higher frequencies are playing now, than originally intended (lower too btw). And since the higher are more easily to locate, there you have "it".

 

Possibly you call the latter "more accurate" only because you have a perception of ambiance and now think you perceive the better part of that (spacious).

If I am a bit correct in this all, then for me accuracy would show the exact opposite. Nothing wide(er), nothing spacious, but all very pinpointed and proper for size. Like you can see the exact sizes of the various cymbals used. And if *then* all works out to perfection, you'd receive the real "staging" again; the louder you are able to put out the highest frequencies, the better it works. But instruments stay where they are and the size does not change.

 

I hope this made some sense, with the notice that this is very difficult to do at the distance.

Peter

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What lightminer is hearing is as simple as a few things...

 

1) Different Masters

2) Different Post Production

3) Hearing the "system" the vinyl was recorded on (cartridge, tone arm, phono pre, cables, ADC)

4) Lack of coloration of any system (on the side of CD/DSD/Hires purchases)

5) That 'vinyl' sound, which is distortion that a lot find more pleasing and more 'musical'

 

The reason he's finding the high-res rips sounding better is because (for the most part) they are, to the point of, more care and time is put into them in that overall the production (studio wise) was done better on the vinyl version. It's amazing how when we have limits (as vinyl does) and we have to adhere to them, we find the best way to work within those limits. However, when the limits are removed, quality seems to suffer. That's my experience.

 

I have a huge collection of vinyl rips and for the most part... I've not found too many HiRes downloads from major production companies (you know all them out there) that come close to what I have found when the care is taken to record an album from vinyl. Now does that go for all... no it does not. But it's a majority of them that if you can get past a few pops and clicks (if the vinyl is not cleaned well and in bad shape) often time sounds superior to the completely clean version found elsewhere.

 

My favorite example is Miles Davis - Kind of Blue. I have a vinyl rip of it that when put against any other vinyl rips, plus cd versions, plus sacd versions, plus hires downloaded versions makes all these others sound "wrong." Each in a different way (so not saying all the other version have the same 'flaws' or 'issues') just does not compare to the copy from a single master and a single version of the pressing from the master. It should be noted I have four versions from the same master and each has a slightly different characteristic to it...but one tends to be picked time and time again as "the best." This is well over 50 people I've demoed it for on multiple different systems and multiple times to the same people (ie same 3 or 4 people heard it on two different systems at different times). In total it's about 25 different versions of the same album.

 

To me, it's fascinating that most of my favorite copies I have are vinyl rips in a digital format.

 

But it's not for everyone and I'm sure there are people out there that won't believe or accept that this could be the case. I'm okay with that.

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Brief comment, more tomorrow. BTW, I found a track I can see on all formats per a comment above and Acoustic Sounds, one of those two guys mentioned above did a DSD transfer of Norah Jones, and I was able to find a vinyl rip 24/96 of the same album, so I can compare those more thoroughly tomorrow and writeup my thoughts.

 

Peter - I appreciate the comments. I think I didn't explain things well on the accuracy aspect. Allow me to try again:

 

Theory A as to why the vinyl rip is so good: It adds distortions that are pleasing - well understood in the analog (tube, vinyl, etc.) world, i.e., 2nd order, 3rd order, etc.

Counter argument to theory A: Not only did I hear the slight smearing that is considered pleasing to many, I *also* heard more resolution, or accuracy. How can both be going on?

 

Okay, so what do I mean by more resolution or accuracy? Take a drumbeat. In a live performance you can hear nuances that tell you exactly how hard it was hit, how much did the top of the drum deflect, etc. Take a Piano, I don't play enough piano to distinguish between brands, but some say on the best recordings they can hear that difference. The piano strike sounds very particular, very singular, that is a particular piano strike with a lot of nuance, with a lot of personality. The humidity, the attitude of the person, that particular night, it is all unique. This is what I mean compared to an Alesis sound file. You can play a generic sound file for a drum beat 10,000 times and it is the same generic drum beat. You can ask a person to hit a drum 1,000 times over several years, and as they age, as they have different attitudes, as the room temp and humidity chnages they will all sound different.

 

That, to me, is accuracy.

 

And that is what I heard on the vinyl rip. It was extraordinarily nuanced to the reality of what could be heard at the recording session.

 

More tomorrow on the Norah Jones, which I will have in at least 4 formats.

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Brief comment, more tomorrow. BTW, I found a track I can see on all formats per a comment above and Acoustic Sounds, one of those two guys mentioned above did a DSD transfer of Norah Jones, and I was able to find a vinyl rip 24/96 of the same album, so I can compare those more thoroughly tomorrow and writeup my thoughts.

 

More tomorrow on the Norah Jones, which I will have in at least 4 formats.

 

The original Norah Jones "Come Away with Me" is a PCM recording (according to the original engineer), so I'm not sure that would be the best example of what DSD can deliver.

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Here is what Acoustic Sounds says:

 

Mastered by Kevin Gray at Cohearent Audio from the original analog master tapes!

 

Norah Jones-Come Away With Me-DSD Single Rate 28MHz64fs Download | Acoustic Sounds

 

 

Oh - I found a comment from 2004 that says that the SACD release was based on the 44.1 recording, maybe that is what you heard? In that same comment stream they said there are analog master tapes, just that it was a botched SACD release technically.....

 

I really don't know if Acoustic Sounds is right or not, but that is an important issue. For example they have the HRx:

 

Eiji Oue - Rachmaninoff: Symphonic Dances; Vocalise

Recorded natively in the PCM format at 176.4 kHz/24 bit and converted to DSD using the best equipment available. Also available as a FLAC and ALAC download.

 

 

(ever so tiny sidenote - has anyone compared that recording, for example to a JRiver 2XDSD translation? Lets not get too sidetracked, though. Its just that they want a lot of money for that)

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Pewter - great post, thanks. Indeed - very interesting.....

 

If there weren't so many issues around copyright we should take a clear example where there is a reference 16/44.1 cd, a good vinyl release, the vinyl rip, and then a 'from the master DSD studio release' and post them all somewhere so people can really hear it. I think most haven't heard a good vinyl rip and are speculating, not listening. That said, I can't explain and/or don't know what is going on.

 

I'm completely happy for a 'studio master to 2XDSD' being better, that makes life a lot easier for us. But I want to hear it and am looking for examples so we can compare. I'm generally of the thought that 'less is better' and 'how can inserting something help' but at the same time its a very clear and stark difference, its just a ton better. Not subtle.

 

Anyway, to really test, we should find a track we all agree on that has all the formats. I'm trying the come away with me, maybe it fulfills all the requirements or maybe it doesn't. Kind of Blue may work also.

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So reading the notes, the 24/192 seems to be their premier release of this album.

 

Miles Davis-Kind Of Blue-FLAC 192kHz24bit Download | Acoustic Sounds

 

 

"The ultimate remaster of one of the most important records of all time!

 

Newly transformed from the original 3-track session tapes — a stunning digital transfer

 

For posterity and for history, the best-selling jazz album ever has now been redefined as a stunning 24/192 high-resolution transfer — available now at SuperHiRez.com!

 

Newly transferred from the original 3-track session tapes and painstakingly engineered to recreate the original sound of the recording studio, this brand new 192kHz/24bit hi-res digital remaster is a definitive take on this Miles Davis classic. What's been achieved is a clarity and richness that transports the listener into the control room of Columbia Records' legendary 30th Street Studio in New York."

 

It goes on and on on how great it all is.

 

 

 

The DSD version, rather than 3 pages of gushing simply has these comments:

 

Miles Davis-Kind Of Blue-DSD Download | Acoustic Sounds

 

"DSD file created by Gus Skinas from the original Sony Super Audio CD cutting masters."

 

Trying to figure out exactly what that means, when you look at the SACD release notes on Acoustic Sounds it says:

 

Miles Davis-Kind Of Blue-Hybrid Stereo SACD | Acoustic Sounds

 

"Best-selling album in jazz history; mastered from the original master tapes"

 

And then it also talks about the 45 RPM Vinyl release so that is a little bit odd.

 

 

Does anyone understand how the DSD release works here? Simple a software conversion from SACD to 1xDSD? If I understand right, there is very little actual conversion in that case, just file headers and whatever formatting. What I mean is I think you can go back and forth without loss between 1XDSD and SACD, is that right?

 

This would of course depend on how well the SACD transfer was done from the original tapes.

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A general comment on the last posts and needle drops :

 

I have told about it quite some times before : Say I have 500 or so of them. Much of it is only there because no official digital transfer of it exists while it is music from my younger days which I like very much. You can just as well think as DSOMT being such an example, it being a quite important album at least to yourself. So say I'd have that one in my collection as a needle drop, and for sure I'd like to listen to it regularly.

 

30 seconds and then I'm completely over my so beautiful and important album from ancient history.

I see no need at all to start again a discussion about the how and what and why, already because every inherent vinyl adherer won't agree anyway. How ? well, simply put, because you don't know what digital can do (and just 16/44.1 for that matter).

So wanting to avoid the pointless discussion, it could be more important that I tell you that I have so many precious albums never released on CD etc., but that they can not be played - so poor. Hey, all is relative - let's not forget that,

 

Taking this further, some may know about my some times ever lasting quests for what would and what would not be better. This includes this :

 

I claim I hear everything and all for whatever tiny differences. Nice.

 

When I record something via a Pacific Microsonics Model II A/D, at 24/192, I can not discern any difference between what I just heard via analogue through the speakers, and what I hear after that from the recording of the same via the PMII in 24/192.

What does it tell ? well, say that the PMII does a mighty fine job on it.

 

As a group on Phasure (forum) we fairly regularly apply such "quests" and could share tracks just like you propose, lightminer. To that regard feel free to send at least me your vinyl rip (just one track you prefer) and I will be happy to "judge" so to speak. And report against the 16/44.1, another vinyl I have, and one or two Hires versions. I am serious and if you are too, then use filemail.com if possible to sales phasure com. But why not email me the link to the torrent. No problems with that with the notice that only two months ago we, over here, were formally allowed to download (not upload). But two months ago minus 1 day I already forgot. :)

 

The vinyl rips I have are from random sources (like yours ;)) unless taken with the PMII which in this latter case always have been about explicit tests. Mind you, this is not only about judging the PMII itself, but merely about how analogue can be held against digital. Now do notice the importance of what I said above : when the PMII is the A/D we (thus not only me !) can not perceive a difference between the analogue source and the recorded digital. This also means that I can listen to analogue through the very same electrical chain. I hope this is clear, because it is quite crucial for my tirade (ok, I'm cool).

 

Of course I need to add that any vinyl rip is as good as the turntable and cartridge used, but say I attend explicit turntable "shows" which happened the last time last October, and I see no difference with "my rips". From that, I report in threads like this and much longer and if you like to have a link I can give it (but better stay objective for a while if I am to compare a DSOTM track and report about it in here. All for fun and nothing else).

 

Concluded (by my own conclusion only of course) : As long as I can listen for 30 seconds only to an album I so much like to hear again, hoping to listen to it for all its 40 minutes, all must be really bad. In comparison.

My previous post springs largely from this experience.

 

Peter

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Here is what Acoustic Sounds says:

 

Mastered by Kevin Gray at Cohearent Audio from the original analog master tapes!

 

Norah Jones-Come Away With Me-DSD Single Rate 28MHz64fs Download | Acoustic Sounds

 

 

Oh - I found a comment from 2004 that says that the SACD release was based on the 44.1 recording, maybe that is what you heard? In that same comment stream they said there are analog master tapes, just that it was a botched SACD release technically.....

 

 

Yes, there is conflicting information on line about that one. I'm told that the Come Away With Me sessions were done in Pro Tools at 48kHz PCM by the original recording engineer.

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So reading the notes, the 24/192 seems to be their premier release of this album.

 

Miles Davis-Kind Of Blue-FLAC 192kHz24bit Download | Acoustic Sounds

 

 

"The ultimate remaster of one of the most important records of all time!

 

Newly transformed from the original 3-track session tapes — a stunning digital transfer

 

For posterity and for history, the best-selling jazz album ever has now been redefined as a stunning 24/192 high-resolution transfer — available now at SuperHiRez.com!

 

Newly transferred from the original 3-track session tapes and painstakingly engineered to recreate the original sound of the recording studio, this brand new 192kHz/24bit hi-res digital remaster is a definitive take on this Miles Davis classic. What's been achieved is a clarity and richness that transports the listener into the control room of Columbia Records' legendary 30th Street Studio in New York."

 

It goes on and on on how great it all is.

 

 

 

The DSD version, rather than 3 pages of gushing simply has these comments:

 

Miles Davis-Kind Of Blue-DSD Download | Acoustic Sounds

 

"DSD file created by Gus Skinas from the original Sony Super Audio CD cutting masters."

 

Trying to figure out exactly what that means, when you look at the SACD release notes on Acoustic Sounds it says:

 

Miles Davis-Kind Of Blue-Hybrid Stereo SACD | Acoustic Sounds

 

"Best-selling album in jazz history; mastered from the original master tapes"

 

And then it also talks about the 45 RPM Vinyl release so that is a little bit odd.

 

 

Does anyone understand how the DSD release works here? Simple a software conversion from SACD to 1xDSD? If I understand right, there is very little actual conversion in that case, just file headers and whatever formatting. What I mean is I think you can go back and forth without loss between 1XDSD and SACD, is that right?

 

This would of course depend on how well the SACD transfer was done from the original tapes.

 

This is my understanding from what I read back in 2013:

The DSD and the PCM from 2013 were both done from the master tapes. But the original DSD was done for Columbia, I think in 2003, and released as an SACD. Gus Skinas "prepared" that DSD file for re-release in 2013 as a DSD download, to be released at the same time as the new PCM remaster/download. So the 2013 PCM and DSD downloads are from the same tapes, but not from the same remastering. Apparently a new 2 channel mixdown to tape was also done in 2013 time from the delicate 3 channel original masters.

 

My understanding till now was that since Columbia had said that since they now had quality hi-res "masters" in both PCM and DSD, as well as a tape mixdown, they had decided not to use the original 3 channel tapes anymore, which apparently are a little delicate at this point. Note: the information out there about this is confusing and a bit contradictory. In one place I read that there was also a new 2 channel DSD master made in 2013. I don't think that one was released till now.

 

The "Columbia" DSD Download is essentially just the same as the file ripped from the earlier SACD; but lots of people think these DSD releases sound better than the home SACD rips (Less processing/decoding going on or for some other reason, who knows?)

 

From the AS web site, it sounds like MFSL was allowed to use the 2013 2 channel mixdown tapes to make a new remaster for vinyl release. Possibly they were also given the 2013 DSD transcription for an exclusive hybrid SACD/DSD version - different from the previous Columbia master used for DSD and SACD. If that's true, I'd definitely be interested in adding it to the 5 different verions of KOB I own (what a sucker :)). I'm going to write AS and ask them about all this.

 

If someone definitively knows I'm wrong about some of this, chime in.

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Listening: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Matrix Element i Streamer/DAC (XLR)+Schiit Freya>Kii Three .

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Living Room/Kitchen: Ropieee (RPi3b+ with touchscreen) + Schiit Modi3E to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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We need a standard for provenance descriptions. it is visibly not an easy thing to authenticate, and makes it all the more important. Maybe MQA will help with that for the PCM realm.

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