Sound Quality Question

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Pena47

Sound Quality Question

Post by Pena47 » Wed Apr 16, 2008 7:17 pm

Now this may seem a bit silly, but I was very confused.

Within MediaMonkey you can convert a song, and even set the new quality (kb/s). For example, I can take a song that is regularly 128 kb/s and change it to 320 kb/s, what I wanted to know is what exactly is this doing? The quality does not improve, but the file size does increase. Thanks

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Re: Sound Quality Question

Post by nohitter151 » Wed Apr 16, 2008 10:09 pm

Pena47 wrote:Now this may seem a bit silly, but I was very confused.

Within MediaMonkey you can convert a song, and even set the new quality (kb/s). For example, I can take a song that is regularly 128 kb/s and change it to 320 kb/s, what I wanted to know is what exactly is this doing? The quality does not improve, but the file size does increase. Thanks
Its doing just what you said, making the file a larger size but with no increase in sound quality. You can never make a song sound better by converting it to a different format.
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Post by theta_wave » Wed Apr 16, 2008 11:10 pm

Exactly, not only does the file size increase but also the sound quality actually decreases. Recompressing and already compressed audio file (lossy compressed i.e. AAC, mp3, etc) simply strips away more audio information that was already stripped before. Therefore, there is more of a chance that audible artifacts can be introduced after your transcode (source->lossy (128kbps)->lossy (320kbps). To put in other words, imagine that you have a nice glossy color picture. If you take it a run-of-the-mill photocopier, the copy will certainly be not be as good as the original though serviceable. Now, for the sake of this hypothetical, take that copy to another run-of-the-mill photocopier that is step up in quality from the other one. Now, the resulting copy will not look as nice as the original, but it will also not be up par to the previous copy. That is the gist of transcoding from one lossy compression format to another. Believe me, the 128kbps rip will sound the same, if not slightly better, than the resulting 320kbps transcode.

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Post by rovingcowboy » Thu Apr 17, 2008 12:03 am

of course then you might try the wave editing which people don't like around here much. but you can add in a slight echo to the song then when you convert it the echo will be most likely to get removed by the compression, and keep your converted song from loosing quality but just how much will be saved and how much lost is a hot debate sometimes around these here parts.
i say all is saved and some say none is saved.? i rip to wav and edit in chorus and up the volume level all the time then convert to ogg and have better sound then mp3 and the original cdrom. so it depends on what you do and how you do it and what equipment you use.

then again my computer might be a better set up then the others here which is why it plays the songs better. now watch that line bring on the torch's :wink:

but i get better sound the way i do it. even though some don't think so. 8)

but i can admit and do say that if you have digital stereo equipment you ain't got much of a chance at getting lots of better sound, i use 20 yr old analog equipment which is all made for use with analog wav's so anything that is a little improvement sounds nice on that stuff.

still there is one thing i been testing on to get better sound and it is again not a surprise but most here will say it don't work.

i told rusty about it but there were errors i found in what i had done so i told him to be careful i was reloading my sound drivers every hour or so. cause i used the wrong stuff with the wrong sound card. but if you use the things with the right card. it does work, what are the things.

Sound fonts. made only for use with midi but work with mp3 ogg wma and every other format i have on the jukebox or tried on the jukebox.
the trouble is though you need to find a good set of sound fonts, and you need to have a sound card that will use .sf2 files. i used them in a card that don't like sf2 files and got an hour of use out of them, but then the card crashed and lost the drivers. so check your card to see if it uses DLS files or Sf2 files.
and get the proper one. i can't say if dls will sound good on anything else but midi.
but the sf2 files will help give a richer fuller sound to the different song formats. this is noticed by having to readjust the eq settings after you put the fonts in because they make the songs a little differently some how maybe the dynamics of the song are just changed a little but something slightly changes. but only if you get the best sf2 around. i found a set for Wurlitzer organs. that do wonders on songs that were made on a midi keyboard and saved as mp3 or wma files.
turns the system in to an Wurlitzer. look for Walnut hill and Wurlitzer miditzer to find them get the full set if you can find them.
but don't expect great leaps in sound quality just a step or two is all they do for non midi formats.
for midi's saved as an mp3 when created they do work great on.

that is the only other thing i found that gives a little bit more quality on the sound.
8)
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Post by drjboulder » Thu Apr 17, 2008 12:53 am

Wait for it....
Wait for it....
Wait...
Wait...
rovingcowboy wrote:of course then you might try the wave editing....
8)
Ahhhhh.....
:wink: 8) :D
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Post by Guest » Thu Apr 17, 2008 1:34 am

there's torch barer. 1 already 8) :roll:

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Post by MusicBringer » Thu Apr 17, 2008 2:44 am

rovingcowboy wrote:then again my computer might be a better set up then the others here which is why it plays the songs better.
OK rovingcowboy, you'd better explain yourself.
Your statement claims that the way a PC is setup impacts the sound quality.
You say yours is setup "better"....better than what?
Your statement also infers that others may have setup their PC in such a way that makes songs sound poor.

You knew what you were doing when you said this (setting up a torch target, ha ha) :)

Now justify your words. Tell me, how can a PC setup impact sound quality when using MM3?.. :wink:

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Post by Teknojnky » Thu Apr 17, 2008 10:22 am

RC can't seem grasp the concept that adding 'echo' and 'volume' while making it sound 'better' to him is not the same as increasing the actual quality.

And that once a file is lossly compressed, that audio information that makes up the music is permanently lost and that no matter how much echo or volume or whatever else will not get back the original quality.

Converting a lossy file to wave, modifying it and then re-compressing it will always 100% of the time still be worse the original audio.

This all boils down to the defination of quality.

Quality to RC appears to be, anything that sounds 'better' on his particular system is better quality.

I would expect that most other people, quality is how exact it is to the original audio, and modifying it in any way shape or form, is exactly the opposite of what most would want.

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Post by Owyn » Thu Apr 17, 2008 10:36 am

I would expect that most other people, quality is how exact it is to the original audio, and modifying it in any way shape or form, is exactly the opposite of what most would want.
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Post by rovingcowboy » Thu Apr 17, 2008 7:37 pm

MusicBringer wrote:
rovingcowboy wrote:then again my computer might be a better set up then the others here which is why it plays the songs better.
OK rovingcowboy, you'd better explain yourself.
Your statement claims that the way a PC is setup impacts the sound quality.
You say yours is setup "better"....better than what?
Your statement also infers that others may have setup their PC in such a way that makes songs sound poor.

You knew what you were doing when you said this (setting up a torch target, ha ha) :)

Now justify your words. Tell me, how can a PC setup impact sound quality when using MM3?.. :wink:

setup means better sound card. better speakers more ram more swap file. better sound fonts. all the stuff needed for better sound. if you don't have the right stuff you can end up with the atari game sounds.

my system is set up for sound with the best sound fonts i could find, the sound cards that were the best when put on the market,. and good speaker systems 5.1 on this dell.

and my stereo system is using my home built 300 watt subwoofer and other full range speakers units. which is what i broacast over my personel fm transmitter to.

thats what i mean by better system. and Teknojnky can't seem to understand that just adding the stuff in keeps it from getting any worse when you do the reconverting stuff.

8)
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Post by Teknojnky » Thu Apr 17, 2008 7:58 pm

I understand it can make it sound not as bad depending on your person preference and hearing ability, but it still not better than the original source.

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Post by rovingcowboy » Thu Apr 17, 2008 11:21 pm

now you are closer to what is more right. 8)

but say, you think ripping the cdrom to mp3 or other format. is the best you can get the song quality.
but since the cdroms are burned at about 160 kbps then when you rip to a 192kbps mp3. all your doing is adding silent data, to add to the size of the file. your still not getting any more then the 160. so the files are mucked up from the start, and not having those 2 freq's on, that most can't hear just makes them even more mucked up. if you rip to a wav you get 1411kbps so editing in more data by adding echo in chorus for either the treble or bass, and then adding in data by pumping up the volume of the file. will add more bits of sound to the file.
and upon converting from the wav. it has the extra bits to choose from to remove which more likely it will remove the added in echo if it has to remove something from that location of the song. so it will keep the song the same or close to the same quality as when you ripped it to a wav. 8)

ripping to mp3 will just need the extra data added in when you make it a wav and edit it. so it also does not loose as much when you go to another lower compressing. therefor making it sound better then the original when, you compress the original to another smaller compression. granted not much better but just enough sometimes that you can hear it. if you can hear the full range of freq's. :) and your equipment is not handicapped by some manufacture cutting costs and using cheap items to make the sound board. :(

some people have better equipment then the ones that wrote the info in the book, and they could not test it when they wrote the book. some have worse but it was bad so they that wrote the book did not test it. so when someone comes along and asks how to make the sound better they need to be told how to do it for all the different setups. so they might get it better on their's which might be worse hardware then someone else's. or better then someone else's. 8)

the wav editing is a major part of that info, and needs to be given to them in answers for them to pick the options they want to try. also they might know they have a bad system and want a way to make it sound better with out speeding lots of money. :o
which again is a way editing helps on, but you guys that say it is no good don't seem to realize they the user asking for help might have need of any way to get it sounding better.

its the same syndrome as the advanced software programmer trying to explain how to do a simple hello script to a newbie, the newbie is overwhelmed by the data in the script on his screen in the first place, then the advanced programmer can't tell the newbie how to do it, with out adding in all the information on each thing that needs done.
all the newbie wants is what to type and where.
so they can see what is going on. 8)
when they get that down they will then be able to understand the whys and why nots of the rest of the programming. but the advanced programmer can't understand that.
:-?
8)
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Post by Teknojnky » Thu Apr 17, 2008 11:49 pm

rovingcowboy wrote: if you rip to a wav you get 1411kbps so editing in more data by adding echo in chorus for either the treble or bass, and then adding in data by pumping up the volume of the file. will add more bits of sound to the file.
and upon converting from the wav. it has the extra bits to choose from to remove which more likely it will remove the added in echo if it has to remove something from that location of the song. so it will keep the song the same or close to the same quality as when you ripped it to a wav. 8)
Uhm, No you simply don't understand how audio compression works.

adding echo, chorus, treble, bass, or anything else for that matter, does not make it more likely your mp3 will be anywhere near the same quality the original.

sorry cowboy, you really are wrong and spreading bad information.

edit:

I know you don't like wiki, but if you really want to learn more about how lossy compression works, I would start here and follow some of the many links and references listed.

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Post by MusicBringer » Fri Apr 18, 2008 4:36 am

rovingcowboy wrote:setup means better sound card. better speakers more ram more swap file. better sound fonts. all the stuff needed for better sound.
Right I understand you now :roll:
You are talking Hardware setup - I was reading setup settings for MM3 :P

Yeah, I quite agree the hardware you use is most important.
That's why my PC, with added sound card, is hooked up to my HiFi system, Amps, ProAc speakers, and so on.
But then that's the same for any player not just MM3.

"better sound fonts" I don't understand this one, rovingcowboy.
Tell me more about using better sound fonts on my MP3s with MM3 :)

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Post by Big_Berny » Fri Apr 18, 2008 6:42 am

@rc: What about a ABX-test to check if the converted one or the modified (add echo etc.) sounds more similar than the original one?

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