Which music format do you use?

Discussion in 'Serious Discussion' started by Katzenfreund, Jan 31, 2017.

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Which music format do you use? (For MAC etc pick the equivalent)

  1. MP3 128/160 kbps

    11 vote(s)
    12.4%
  2. MP3 198/256 kbps

    9 vote(s)
    10.1%
  3. MP3 320 kbps

    29 vote(s)
    32.6%
  4. FLAC/WAV (CD)

    40 vote(s)
    44.9%
  1. Katzenfreund

    Katzenfreund MDL Expert

    Jul 15, 2016
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    Talking about set-ups and sound reproduction, it is my experience that studio quality headphones can beat any speaker setups. This is probably due to the optimum acoustic conditions and the low power levels involved that don’t produce distortion. Even quality in-ear earbuds can sound quite impressive.
     
  2. melted

    melted MDL Novice

    Jan 17, 2015
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    #42 melted, Feb 2, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 20, 2017
    Does this apply to all vinyl? I thought the low end problem was solved long ago by cutting single songs on 12" vinyl @ 45rpm with much
    wider grooves. There was a lot of "You can't cut that! the needle will fly right off!" talk, that cutters who ran the lathes said,
    and some of them made their marks by being able to do it.

    Some fun links:
    Using a flatbed scanner to reproduce your vinyl:
    http://www.cs.huji.ac.il/~springer/DigitalNeedle/index.html
    No needle? :p
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laser_turntable


    If you have the know how and the right portable players you
    can add S/PDIF outs to them totally skipping the D/A converter.
    Now in that circumstance would anyone want lossy compression?

    Quadraphonic recordings had a good run in their day.
    I can tell you that it's good fun to be able to listen to them.

    Here are three formats that haven't been mentioned:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Audio_CD
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DVD-Audio
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_Fidelity_Pure_Audio

    I haven't had a chance to check any of them out.
    The quality seems impressive in writing at least.
    I do like the idea of being able to listen to music or
    a soundscape created for 5.1 etc.

    The headphones:walkman:earbud statements?

    Oh, I think you need all that bass. :stereo:

     
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  3. Scr4tch

    Scr4tch MDL Junior Member

    Jan 29, 2017
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    But I have to say, all around the format, but the music itself, I also prefer most of old. :)
    The modern music (in most of all pop-music) going more and more crap, Justin Bieber like...
    That's true, I can recommend Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO, 250 ohms, better as every speaker same price. :)
     
  4. Katzenfreund

    Katzenfreund MDL Expert

    Jul 15, 2016
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    And this is my portable MP3 player that I take along on my early morning walks to fight boredom. As a result, I even look forward to them.

    Sony Walkman NWZ-B152
    [​IMG]
    It’s not the latest model, not expensive, it cost me less than 25 Euros, and it holds up to 500 MP3s. But the main characteristic is that despite being low-end, it sounds quite good.
     
  5. Michaela Joy

    Michaela Joy MDL Crazy Lady

    Jul 26, 2012
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    @Katzenfreund: Functional, inexpensive, sounds good. That's what really matters.

    @Scr4tch: I took a look at those Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO.

    They look really nice. :)
     
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  6. Katzenfreund

    Katzenfreund MDL Expert

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    Never buy expensive headphones, unless you can try them in the shop AND compare them with other models in the same class, using the same HQ music. This is because on heir own, they all sound good to the point you think they can't get any better, but comparing them with others, you'll detect subtle differences in transparency.
     
  7. Yen

    Yen Admin
    Staff Member

    May 6, 2007
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    I agree. I'd say a decent headphone amp/DAC and player together with a headphone can have a sound quality that requires speakers which are hardly affordable to get a comparable sound.
    The issue with speakers is the room physics (interference) and how to eliminate them.
    The resolution of a headphone can be very impressing especially at natural instruments...at a violin's bowing you can hear 'each fiber'...anyway on headphones you never can have the 'body feeling' of the music.


    I dunno. AFAIK the recording characteristic applies to any vinyl. The realization of RIAA curve has been done more or less consequent also as means of arts and 'unique' sound. It's no fixed curve it's calculated considering the parameters of the vinyl.


    I also like Beyerdynamic, but I have chosen the DT880, it is semi-open and I use it for classics.

    Best is to bring your music and player to the shop
     
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  8. Michaela Joy

    Michaela Joy MDL Crazy Lady

    Jul 26, 2012
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    @Katzenfreund: I wholly agree with you. Normally I go to Mannys or Sam Ash in Manhattan and listen.

    I'm considering buying a set of 'Reference' headphones for mixing. I want something that is as flat as possible.
    Also, they -need- to be closed so that no extraneous sounds enter and interfere with the mixing process.
     
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  9. Michaela Joy

    Michaela Joy MDL Crazy Lady

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    @cdavisdeco: TBH, I don't think that you should be able to notice much of a difference.
    Of course, that depends on what the output circuits look like. Most computer / phone sound systems are 16 bit, 44.1 khz sample rate with a brickwall filter and standard output circuits (Rough equivalent to an LM386).

    If you want to compare, make sure that the sample rates and the bit depths are the same. A 16 bit depth will give you
    approximately 96db of dynamic range, which is pretty good for just about any system. There are systems that operate at 48 khz sample rate, but they up-convert the original 44.1 khz rate. A higher sample rate only matters when you record at that rate. (IMHO)
     
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  10. Katzenfreund

    Katzenfreund MDL Expert

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    For listening at home in general, the closed type gives the purest undisturbed experience. The down side is that if some kind of alarm etc sounds, you may not be able to hear it.

    For outdoor use, the open kind is obligatory, so the you can hear traffic sounds etc.
     
  11. Michaela Joy

    Michaela Joy MDL Crazy Lady

    Jul 26, 2012
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    @Katzenfreund: As I said. I'm not using them for home listening. I'm using them for recording and mixing down songs.
     
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  12. Yen

    Yen Admin
    Staff Member

    May 6, 2007
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    I'd say open headphones are best for natural sound, also if one needs a 'flat' one semi-open could be best.
    The only thing to consider is the fact that they are not closed. They have an influence on the surrounding and the other way around, means the listener might disturb others and the ambient noise might disturb the listener.

    The DT880 PRO is more natural and 'flat' compared to the DT770 PRO. The DT770 is warmer more forceful at the lows.

    I'd say open or half open are best for mixing they have the most natural/real sound, but might be an issue at recording.
     
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  13. MiSieeQ

    MiSieeQ MDL Novice

    Apr 25, 2011
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    I am always looking for 320 kbps mp3 ;) lately, i did download some flacs only because they were easier to find :D
     
  14. cdavisdeco

    cdavisdeco MDL Senior Member

    Jul 8, 2015
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    Considering all the facts above discussed isn't MP3 320kbps the best format in size:quality:availability ?
     
  15. Scr4tch

    Scr4tch MDL Junior Member

    Jan 29, 2017
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    Even then it can be better. :p
    I already did that but my recommendation based also on other reviewers.
    There is relative small line of quality you can measure on objectivity as in subjectivity, even in audio.
    And the anyone else can hear your music. :)
    For the traffic I always use just my eyes, hard to imagine to hear my music AND the annoying traffic and other noises like stupid people talking in stores. :D
    Oh yes, for mixing you need definitely neutral and open ones.
    But always take the high Ohm variant and use a amplifier-device.
    By the way, just for my interest, why you are using an mp3-plyer device instead of a cellphone?
    When I walk in the woods I just do my phone on a belt clip, it's safe and still keeps comfort.

    Sony MP3-Player I used in my teenage life, there were just Nokia Phones everywhere. :)
     
  16. Katzenfreund

    Katzenfreund MDL Expert

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    I thought that was obvious. It’s the same as not carrying a whole toolbox if you only need a screwdriver to tighten a screw. It’s smaller, lighter, much tougher and, as I said above, far cheaper.
     
  17. Katzenfreund

    Katzenfreund MDL Expert

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  18. Scr4tch

    Scr4tch MDL Junior Member

    Jan 29, 2017
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    So you have not a cellphone?

    My parents hasn't an one either for long time.
    Now they using Whatsapp and all the other s**t, too. lol

    by the way, I'm on way to buy a mobile mp3-player device as well now. :p
    I need it for swimming, my cellphones and headphones are not waterproof (just rain, no underwater), so a special one for water sports is need.
     
  19. Michaela Joy

    Michaela Joy MDL Crazy Lady

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  20. Katzenfreund

    Katzenfreund MDL Expert

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    My cellphone is a dumbphone, but was dirty cheap and it doesn’t become obsolete every year. Btw, though it’s light and compact, I don’t carry it on me all the time.

    So I have a separate compact camera for photos, which does a better job, and a separate MP3 walkman, that I also believe does a better job. And in the worst case that I smash it up, it’s no big financial loss.

    Plus a separate desktop tower for computing and surfing.

    Grand total cost less that that of a smartphone. Grand total performance, far superior.