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Old 21st August 2019
  #30
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Originally Posted by DAH View Post
I specified DAT only in the context of the mix storage medium used by one of the biggest producers in the genre. Although my point stands for any digital format with lesser than say 88/96 khz sample rate.
IOW - virtually every recording made prior to the advent of Pro Tools HD c.2002, and virtually very recording made since.

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As you may know, the sound fatness\chunkiness\forwardness of the samples used in production is just a part of the picture. The vocals,
Captured with mics that rarely pick up much over 18khz.

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the spatial FX
Which, in digital devices, largely operate BELOW 44.1khz (the state of the art 480L maxed out at the dreaded 48k SR).

Plates are almost always low-pass filtered because they get damn noisy, so those maybe go up to 10khz.

So maybe if rap records were using a bunch of chamber reverbs, ok..?

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and EQ\dynamics as well as summing were not done at the sampler's resolution of 32k 12bit. Do not mix up things.
So you're talking about harmonics (ie - distortion) added by various analog stages?


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No, I did not mention ProTools specifically. It is just that digital at 44/48 kHz, be it DAT, DASH, CD-DA, PCM Wav file has less resolution than either a master tape, a 96 PCM file, or a vinyl cut from either of the former two sources without low sample rate DDL.
Of those three, the 96 PCM is by far the highest-resolution format. But 48k easily outperforms the other two in terms of objective fidelity.

Vinyl is easily the worst. Smallest dynamic range, much more limited frequency response (fyi - vinyl rarely has anything above 20khz; to that end, it's even worse than 48k or even 44.1k PCM audio), plus, there's the physical wear factor, which further diminishes both dynamic and frequency ranges. And, the playback quality is highly limited by the system, meaning, there are MANY opportunities for further degradation along the output signal path.

Tape is second worst. The manual for my ATR 102 (amongst the finest and certainly most commonly-used tape deck for mixing and mastering) l shows an upper frequency limit of 28k at 30ips, and a measly 20k at 15ips. That's not taking into consideration different tape formulas, biases, etc, and it's for an optimum maintained machine with brand-new, perfect heads. So at best, its frequency response is akin to approximately a 60kHz sample rate. To put this into perspective, that's about a minor third's worth of added musical information over what's offered by 48khz SR. Three semitones.

But wait! There's more! With every generation of tape transfer (eg - a multitrack being mixed and printed to a half-inch deck), you lose 3db of SNR. And the first thing to go is that high end. And of course, the tape itself wears down over time and again, the first thing to go is that high end.

And we're only focusing on the upper frequency response. In most cases, tape will roll off the LF, especially at high speeds. So, most engineers have to consider what matters more for a given project: extended HF or extended LF. In the case of a hip hop record, I'll let you guess what most folks choose

And of course, the dynamic range is much, much smaller than digital.

So I wonder, where exactly is this "resolution" coming from...? And how on earth can you ever find a listenable reference master in a world of such low-resolution audio mediums?

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So DACs even got used to record. Quite a new function to me. I and many other always knew DACs were to convert digital data to analogue voltage.
By "DAC" i meant "Digital Audio Convertor", not "Digital-to-Analog Convertor".
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