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Launch of Pono Studio Headphones
Old 4th April 2014
  #2311
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Kenny Gioia's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sounds Great View Post
Cassettes do capture info missing on CD's. Yes it also adds noise and distortions that you don't want. You weigh them out. I had a fabulous car system that was first cassette and then I finally switched over to CD. They both have their positives and negatives. CD's are certainly more convenient. And consistent. But when properly recorded and working the way the are capable of, I preferred, by far, the sound of the cassette. I miss them. Higher bit PCM would be more enjoyable to me than CD. Of course DSD completely blows all these formats away.
And here we are ladies and gentlemen.
Old 4th April 2014
  #2312
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sounds Great View Post
Excuse me?
Without noise reduction (which many cassette users didn't like or would use as a one-sided treble boost), a cassette could deliver from the high 40s up to around 60 dB of signal to noise ratio with Type IV tapes. So that would be roughly equivalent to 8-10 bits of dynamic 'resolution.'

But let's not stop there.

How about we throw in various forms of harmonic distortion, speed accuracy typically spec'd at +/- 2% (1% for high end decks), ridiculous wow & flutter?

Mind you, I've owned scores of cassette decks. I've owned at least three that cost well over $1000 in today's money. It was a thing of its time. I ALWAYS thought it was a terribly compromised format from the very first, insanely expensive Sony stereo deck I saw (which cost almost $4K in 1969 adjusted for inflation) to the 'pro' deck sitting in my PB stack today.

You guys who think cassettes are somehow so groovy, I just can't even imagine. I mean, it flummoxes me. How can you listen to a cassette and think it's not far, far inferior to a vinyl record, a prerecorded reel release or, of course, a CD?
Old 4th April 2014
  #2313
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JSt0rm's Avatar
I always assumed people who like tapes like the EFFECT. And there is something to it, a good bit of modern stuff is adding this effect into the production end.
Old 4th April 2014
  #2314
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Quote:
Originally Posted by strings View Post
I hope everyone is having fun calling down cassettes, but on a cassette, you're getting the full studio sound, on a CD you are not.
I once had a summer job working in a cassette duplication factory. We received a copy of a copy of the studio master tape. From this copy we made more copies to use as our running masters. The running masters ran night and day through a bin at 16x speed, (shedding oxide as they went) and the cassettes were dubbed from that on platters. That 16x puts whatever 20k signal that is left after all that dubbing up to 320k - even for these specially designed machines, a "bit" out of reach.

Later, I understand this same factory switched to digital masters, so your precious cassettes were merely tape copies of 16 bit digital, just like most of your records.

What was my job at this factory you ask? Quality control!

Quote:
Spout all the technically details you want, but to my ears cassettes and albums sound better than CDs.
certainly you are well within your rights to prefer any sound that you like. Perhaps a telephone answering machine is somebody else's style. You yourself, however should refrain from "spouting" pseudo-scientific explanations of WHY you like what you like. Such as, that on cassettes, you are "getting the full sound". Your preference for the artifacts of analog technologies needs no justification any more than your preference for pistachio ice cream.

It's only when you say things like "pistachio is better for our brains" or "pistachio is closer to reality" that you lose your authority.

The "technically details" are the science that made the phonograph possible, the tape deck possible and the digital recorder possible. IMO, they DO matter, but if you are going to ignore them, please ignore them in their entirety, don't try to pick and choose the parts that justify your preferences.

Your preferences need no justification. It's perfectly OK to like what you like.
Old 4th April 2014
  #2315
Quote:
Originally Posted by JSt0rm View Post
I always assumed people who like tapes like the EFFECT. And there is something to it, a good bit of modern stuff is adding this effect into the production end.
That I can understand.


And, actually, spurred by a flurry of cassette-centric threads in this forum community, I had sort of a 'cassette camp' some months back. I pulled out a bunch of my old cassettes from various sources, mixes, copies of LPs, copies of CDs, party tapes, some live-improv-loop-music straight to cassette, as well as some blanks which I dumped various mixes and such to. It was interesting. Kind of depressing, though, actually, because, as negative as I may sound about cassettes, I actually found that recent 'cassette camp' even more disappointing. I was expecting to have a kind of lo fi fun. But what I came away with was just an even greater certainty that the Compact Cassette has well had its day.
Old 4th April 2014
  #2316
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strings's Avatar
"...You guys who think cassettes are somehow so groovy, I just can't even imagine. I mean, it flummoxes me. How can you listen to a cassette and think it's not far, far inferior to a vinyl record, a prerecorded reel release or, of course, a CD?"

I was right with you up until you added "CD".
Old 4th April 2014
  #2317
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strings's Avatar
"...certainly you are well within your rights to prefer any sound that you like. Perhaps a telephone answering machine is somebody else's style. You yourself, however should refrain from "spouting" pseudo-scientific explanations of WHY you like what you like. Such as, that on cassettes, you are "getting the full sound". Your preference for the artifacts of analog technologies needs no justification any more than your preference for pistachio ice cream.
It's only when you say things like "pistachio is better for our brains" or "pistachio is closer to reality" that you lose your authority.
The "technically details" are the science that made the phonograph possible, the tape deck possible and the digital recorder possible. IMO, they DO matter, but if you are going to ignore them, please ignore them in their entirety, don't try to pick and choose the parts that justify your preferences.
Your preferences need no justification. It's perfectly OK to like what you like."

I agree with you. I did post in a few threads back that I take back the "full studio sound" comment, but also stated that CDs don't have it either.
Old 4th April 2014
  #2318
Gear Guru
 
Kenny Gioia's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by strings View Post
I was right with you up until you added "CD".
I don't think the facepalm means what you think it means.

Everyone is allowed to have an opinion, but yours is certainly considered more facepalm-ish then yours.

But that is my opinion of course. Maybe we should just keep that emoticon in our pockets.
Old 4th April 2014
  #2319
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Sean M Robinson's Avatar
 

All joking aside, I think as an effect there are many albums that benefit from the gauzy wow and flutter of the cassette tape mixdown. The aforementioned Nebraska, the second two Eliot Smith albums... I'm sure there's more. Like a voice creeping out of the haze and grime.

However, these qualities can be perfectly captured and preserved on digital after the fact
Old 4th April 2014
  #2320
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Kenny Gioia's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean M Robinson View Post

However, these qualities can be perfectly captured and preserved on digital after the fact
As long as it's 192kHz 24bit.

Anything less will not accurately represent cassette's fidelity.
Old 4th April 2014
  #2321
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GJ999x's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenny Gioia View Post
....cassetteness.
Boooom!
Old 4th April 2014
  #2322
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GJ999x's Avatar
I love what cassettes do to 25-35Khz, it just sounds like chocolate biscuits to me.
Old 4th April 2014
  #2323
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strings's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenny Gioia View Post
I don't think the facepalm means what you think it means.

Everyone is allowed to have an opinion, but yours is certainly considered more facepalm-ish then yours.

But that is my opinion of course. Maybe we should just keep that emoticon in our pockets.
Your right, I not sure what the facepalm means. I basically was trying to say "you had me, then you lost me". I didn't mean any disrespect.
Old 4th April 2014
  #2324
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I don't want the recording media to change the sound of the mix. If I want the mix to sound different I'll mix it differently, or maybe use a tape simulator as an effect.

Chris
Old 4th April 2014
  #2325
Don't be dissin' the facepalm, Kenny. heh It's a valuable social tool. Sometimes words fail.

FWIW, I used to facepalm myself (Doh!) fairly often but it was sometimes mistaken as an outward directed FP and, so, I either try to make it really clear I'm commenting on my own foolish comments or actions or I don't use it that way. But, hell, yeah, I reserve the right to pull the FP out when all other comment seems inadequate. FWIW, I don't see the FP as an ad hominem attack but rather as directed at the comments or actions in question.
Old 4th April 2014
  #2326
Quote:
Originally Posted by strings View Post
You do realize that when CDs first came out, the quality wasn't that good. Go back and listen to an old one. Don't believe me, why do you think there are so many "remastered" versions coming out?
Actually, first gens were often prints of masters for vinyl, and thus some sounded superb.

I have a first gen of Ry Cooder's "Chicken Skin Music" that, although quite low in level, (big deal I have many volume knobs), sounds absolutely excellent.
Old 4th April 2014
  #2327
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nuthinupmysleeve's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sounds Great View Post
Cassettes do capture info missing on CD's.
What, EXACTLY, please?

Quote:
Higher bit PCM would be more enjoyable to me than CD. Of course DSD completely blows all these formats away.
Again, like what you like, but... higher bit (assume you mean sample rate) PCM is more enjoyable... why? It is LESS like a cassette than a CD!
Old 4th April 2014
  #2328
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nuthinupmysleeve's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by strings View Post
I agree with you. I did post in a few threads back that I take back the "full studio sound" comment, but also stated that CDs don't have it either.
What does have the "full sound?"

You realize that vinyl needs to have low end rolled off to ensure the arm will track properly.. right?

What, exactly, are CDs missing?

Mastering For Vinyl Records | Gotta Groove Records
Old 4th April 2014
  #2329
Gear Guru
 
Kenny Gioia's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by strings View Post
Your right, I not sure what the facepalm means. I basically was trying to say "you had me, then you lost me". I didn't mean any disrespect.
Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1 View Post
Don't be dissin' the facepalm, Kenny. heh It's a valuable social tool. Sometimes words fail.

FWIW, I used to facepalm myself (Doh!) fairly often but it was sometimes mistaken as an outward directed FP and, so, I either try to make it really clear I'm commenting on my own foolish comments or actions or I don't use it that way. But, hell, yeah, I reserve the right to pull the FP out when all other comment seems inadequate. FWIW, I don't see the FP as an ad hominem attack but rather as directed at the comments or actions in question.
I really hate the facepalm. Everyone that has ever facepalmed me is on my ignore list. Even when it's warranted, I still won't use it.

I just find it so disrespectful. Like saying "Do I (being as awesome as I am) really have to explain this to you?"
Old 4th April 2014
  #2330
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nuthinupmysleeve's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenny Gioia View Post
I really hate the facepalm. Everyone that has ever facepalmed me is on my ignore list. Even when it's warranted, I still won't use it.

I just find it so disrespectful. Like saying "Do I (being as awesome as I am) really have to explain this to you?"








(LOL.. someone had to do it).

Old 4th April 2014
  #2331
Quote:
Originally Posted by nspaas View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by strings View Post
You do realize that when CDs first came out, the quality wasn't that good. Go back and listen to an old one. Don't believe me, why do you think there are so many "remastered" versions coming out?
Actually, first gens were often prints of masters for vinyl, and thus some sounded superb.

I have a first gen of Ry Cooder's "Chicken Skin Music" that, although quite low in level, (big deal I have many volume knobs), sounds absolutely excellent.
I've heard a few bad CDs over the years. But I don't think it was a huge problem and I suspect it was largely not due to problems with the professional ADC so much as other issues or inappropriate mastering-for-CD.

That said, the first few CD players I heard did NOT impress me very favorably. I waited until 1984 when one of my audiophile buddies bought a reasonably priced Magnavox (Philips) that had received good reviews in the mags he read at the time. I was skeptical but I listened to it over his (otherwise) high end PB system and I thought it sounded quite good. It certainly didn't have the harsh qualities I heard in the first few players. (If anything, the filtering was a bit over-aggressive. But, you know, when it comes to alias error, I kind of think better safe than sorry, if you've got to err one way or the other.)
Old 4th April 2014
  #2332
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenny Gioia View Post
I really hate the facepalm. Everyone that has ever facepalmed me is on my ignore list. Even when it's warranted, I still won't use it.

I just find it so disrespectful. Like saying "Do I (being as awesome as I am) really have to explain this to you?"
I'll try to remember to use it sparingly when commenting on your posts. heh
Old 4th April 2014
  #2333
j_j
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sounds Great View Post
Cassettes do capture info missing on CD's.
That's an interesting assertion. Could you please show, in a testable fashion, exactly what information that would be?
Old 4th April 2014
  #2334
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenny Gioia View Post
I really hate the facepalm. Everyone that has ever facepalmed me is on my ignore list. Even when it's warranted, I still won't use it.

I just find it so disrespectful. Like saying "Do I (being as awesome as I am) really have to explain this to you?"


Old 4th April 2014
  #2335
Gear Addict
Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1 View Post
I've heard a few bad CDs over the years. But I don't think it was a huge problem and I suspect it was largely not due to problems with the professional ADC so much as other issues or inappropriate mastering-for-CD.

That said, the first few CD players I heard did NOT impress me very favorably. I waited until 1984 when one of my audiophile buddies bought a reasonably priced Magnavox (Philips) that had received good reviews in the mags he read at the time. I was skeptical but I listened to it over his (otherwise) high end PB system and I thought it sounded quite good. It certainly didn't have the harsh qualities I heard in the first few players. (If anything, the filtering was a bit over-aggressive. But, you know, when it comes to alias error, I kind of think better safe than sorry, if you've got to err one way or the other.)
Oh man, you and I had the same reaction to early CD playback. Were you also called a stubborn Luddite, anti-scientific, biased, hard of hearing, etc. etc. for not immediately jumping on the Perfect Sound Forever bandwagon?

Anyway, I just made another purchase of a hi-res (24/96) release from HDtracks, the new one by Nickel Creek. There's a very interesting thread in this forum about how the record was made. Oh, and the sound is fantastic, but how much of that is due specifically to the resolution I do not know. But I do know it sounds better to me than the band's early releases in standard redbook format. FWIW.

Cheers,
Eddie
Old 5th April 2014
  #2336
Airwindows
 
chrisj's Avatar
The real promise of Pono is simply the opportunity to present music outside of the given expectations for 2014 CD/mp3/streaming loudness, brightness, etc.

I'm quite serious (and actively engaged in an attempt to push this concept harder through my software work). To be able to say, "why yes this track measures 18 db down from the latest pop hit. It's for Pono, you fool. You're not listening to it on the proper device!"?

That is a really VALUABLE freedom. All the mechanisms of 'making everything louder and flatter than everything else', including my own, could be rendered obsolete at a stroke.

And I'd rejoice, because I know how to thrive in this new world of 'listen attentively to the sound of the music'. I was MADE for this stuff. I am stoked
Old 5th April 2014
  #2337
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eddie TX View Post
Oh man, you and I had the same reaction to early CD playback. Were you also called a stubborn Luddite, anti-scientific, biased, hard of hearing, etc. etc. for not immediately jumping on the Perfect Sound Forever bandwagon?

Anyway, I just made another purchase of a hi-res (24/96) release from HDtracks, the new one by Nickel Creek. There's a very interesting thread in this forum about how the record was made. Oh, and the sound is fantastic, but how much of that is due specifically to the resolution I do not know. But I do know it sounds better to me than the band's early releases in standard redbook format. FWIW.

Cheers,
Eddie
Nah. I already had a reputation among the can't-wait-to-spend-a-buck contingent of my social set for telling people who already had nice belt-drive turntables that they didn't need (or even want) the latest direct-drive stuff (so much of which, of course, was ticky, lightweight consumer crap pumped out to take advantage of the latest bad idea -- not to say you can't make a good DD turntable -- you just can't make a good cheap one) and for being among the first to reject quad. People were starting to suspect that I was just prejudiced against stereo gear turnover fads.

FWIW, it was paying top dollar for an ambient LP from Eno, carefully cleaning and discharging it (without using stupid chem cleaners of course) and putting it on my quite good manual table, and then having all these pops and this underlying surface noise on a brand new record* that pushed me over the edge. (And, you know, on environmental/ambient music, pops and noise really stand out. Talk about an inverted signal to noise ratio.)

I pretty much shifted my new record purchases from vinyl to CD at that point.

I still bought a lot of used vinyl -- because, of course, all the rubes had to go out and buy new copies of everything while I was perfectly happy to pick up their old vinyl for a buck or less -- but I decided I was over paying top dollar for product the industry either couldn't or wouldn't keep free of multiple, significant defects. So, from there on out, I would always go for the CD over vinyl.**


* And, yes, I also tried washing it in distilled water.

** Worth noting that, just as it became easier for the industry as a whole to put out a relatively sonic-defect-free product on CD, that development also made the preferred front end of consumer stereos much easier to pump out -- even in the shabby, quantity-first fashion that had produced generation after generation of simply awful sounding, record-destroying consumer record changers. Say what you will about crappy consumer CD players (and they certainly can be) -- they are still dimensions better than the crappy consumer changers most older Americans grew up with. Even if one is willing to subscribe to the notion that vinyl sounds better than CD/digital -- one should at least pause to consider that for 99.x% of the population, vinyl playback was a truly dismal sonic experience... (That the music somehow magically helped them transcend... that crazy music stuff, eh? They should spend some time to try to figure that out! heh )
Old 5th April 2014
  #2338
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paul brown's Avatar
Claims both published and anecdotal are regularly made for audibly superior sound quality for two-channel audio encoded with longer word lengths and/or at higher sampling rates than the 16-bit/44.1-kHz CD standard. The authors report on a series of double-blind tests comparing the analog output of high-resolution players playing high-resolution recordings with the same signal passed through a 16-bit/44.1-kHz “bottleneck.” The tests were conducted for over a year using different systems and a variety of subjects. The systems included expensive professional monitors and one high-end system with electrostatic loudspeakers and expensive components and cables. The subjects included professional recording engineers, students in a university recording program, and dedicated audiophiles. link here

16/44.1 technology does not audibly degrade the sound of the best high-resolution discs (SACD and DVD-Audio) based on these series of double blind testings.

a hearing test available as well!
Old 5th April 2014
  #2339
Gear Guru
 
Kenny Gioia's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CarmenC View Post


Whenever I get involved in one of these long threads, someone always shows themselves to be…

let's say, less than honorable.

And sometimes I even question my own behavior.

But they usually make it easy for me in the end.
Old 5th April 2014
  #2340
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nuthinupmysleeve's Avatar
 

This site has some fun stuff for self testing your hearing:

The 16-bit v/s 8-bit Blind Listening Test
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