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16 bit vs 24 bit, 44.1khz vs 48 khz <-- please explain



 
 
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  #71  
Old November 18th 03, 09:42 PM
Jay - atldigi
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Default 16 bit vs 24 bit, 44.1khz vs 48 khz <-- please explain

In article >,
wrote:

> Justin Ulysses Morse > wrote:
> |
> |While it's true that the additional bits tack your extended resolution
> |onto "the bottom" of the dynamic range, it clearly increases the
> |resolution at all levels. You can have a -100dB component to a -1dB
> |signal, and you still want to hear it.
>
> Is the ear even capable of hearing the -100 component against the much
> louder -1? I thought masking pervented this.
>
> Phil


I knew somebody would bring this up... It was for purposes of
illustration from Justin. Depending on how loud playback is, the
frequencies of the sounds, how constant one or the other is, etc. will
determine whether it will be heard or not. That's not the point. The
value of the specific theoretical example nonwithstanding, the concept
is what was attempted to be illustrated.

--
Jay Frigoletto
Mastersuite
Los Angeles
promastering.com
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  #72  
Old November 18th 03, 09:56 PM
Jay - atldigi
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Default 16 bit vs 24 bit, 44.1khz vs 48 khz <-- please explain

In article > , Justin
Ulysses Morse > wrote:

> Jay - atldigi > wrote:
>
> > At least somebody understands me, but I thought I had already said this
> > somewhere in the thread. It's those quieter components that you are
> > getting from the extra bits. The louder components aren't represented
> > any better. In the end, it can be a more precise and better sounding
> > recording (provided the source is of a quality to benefit), but it's
> > because of the little things you can now record, not that the big ones
> > are better.

>
> See, you are in full agreement with Arny. It just depends on whether
> you're thinking of the music as a collection of sounds or one big
> sound. As a collection of sounds, your extra bits are only revealing
> the quiet ones; the loud components were already represented by 16
> bits. But when you step back and listen to the whole thing, what that
> MEANS is greater detail in the music, even where it's loud.
>
>
> ulysses


Perhaps all the extra discussion gets in the way of the simple truths.
Here's the most simple way I think my point can be stated:


16 bits is perfectly capable of reproducing 96 dB of dynamic range. With
dither, the system is linear.


You can get better than that. It's linear within 96 dB (a little less if
you count the dither's added noise floor, a little more if you count
what the ear can hear within the noise floor due to averaging of noise
in our brain). You can't get better than "what you put in is what you
get out".

However, that's not all there is to audio, and we can hear about 120 dB
of dynamic range, so 16 bits can be a limitation and 20 or 24 can
certainly sound better. It doesn't have to be in an area where there's
nothing above -96 either. however, it in no way makes 16 bits' limited
96db range any less accurate. That's the point people seem to miss.

--
Jay Frigoletto
Mastersuite
Los Angeles
promastering.com
  #74  
Old November 18th 03, 10:10 PM
Jay - atldigi
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Default 16 bit vs 24 bit, 44.1khz vs 48 khz <-- please explain

In article > , Justin
Ulysses Morse > wrote:

> Suppose you record live to 2-track at 16 bits and you just make a
> single "transaction" where you maybe run an EQ, a gain boost, and a
> little peak limiting all in one pass. You're using 24-bit DSP but you
> have to stuff the result back into a 16-bit package. Not a real big
> deal, your "clerk" rings you up and says that'll be $45.58. You only
> have to say "keep the change" once.
>
> But now what if you've got a bunch of different processes to run,
> incrementally, that you evaluate before you move on to the next
> process? Maybe you're multi-tracking and you're processing each track
> differently. There's all kinds of "keep the change" adding up.


You're really making the case for higher intermediate wordlengths. If
you have a 16 bit file, preferably you'll process even higher than 24
bits. Let's take 48 bit for purposes of discussion. Between processes,
however, if you keep "stuffing" it back to 16 as you say, then you
indeed are going to have trouble, especially cumlatively. In the best
case scenario, a DAW would hand 48 bits from one process to the next and
you'd never come back down until delivery. Unfortunately, most DAWs,
even ones that process at 48, hand 24 bit words between processors (some
do allow 32 float to be saved as an intermediate). Also, external
processors, even those that work at greater than 24 bits of precision,
can only receive and transmit 24 bit words as AES and SPDIF etc. only
support up to 24 bit words. So, you dither from 48 to 24 before handing
it off, but don't drop below 24 until delivery, and that clerk won't be
keeping your change.

This is not to say that nothing above 16 bit capture or delivery is ever
beneficial - just that this is more the argument for processing with
longer wordlengths. Simply staring with a 16 bit file to process doesn't
mean you have to go back to 16 after every process you apply.

--
Jay Frigoletto
Mastersuite
Los Angeles
promastering.com
  #76  
Old November 18th 03, 10:33 PM
Arny Krueger
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Default 16 bit vs 24 bit, 44.1khz vs 48 khz <-- please explain

"Tommi" > wrote in message

> "Justin Ulysses Morse" > wrote in message
> m...
>> Thanks for this explanation, Arny. Idunno if it helped Tommi but it
>> helped me. Every time I finally grasp another "big concept" in
>> digital audio I'm always amazed at how incredibly clever it is.
>> Those old French mathmen must have been giddy as hell when they
>> figured this stuff out.
>>
>> ulysses
>>

>
>
> Yes, it was indeed an informative reply from Arny!


<blush>


  #77  
Old November 18th 03, 10:35 PM
Jay - atldigi
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Default 16 bit vs 24 bit, 44.1khz vs 48 khz <-- please explain

In article >,
(Garthrr) wrote:

> Ok, considering the post below, then the question is "Where is the
> disagreement between the two camps-- the one camp who says 16 bit is
> as good as 24 bit for anything but very, very low level audio and the
> other camp that says 24 bit is better even at higher recording levels?
> Where is the point at which the two camps begin to disagree?


It's not the "if", it's the "why". The subject is so complicated that
it's hard to give simple answers. For instance, 24 bits for delivery or
initial A to D is unneccessary because analog electronics (mics, pres,
consoles, the inputs of the ADC itself, outputs in the DAC, and
reproduction equipment) can't produce that kind of dynamic range, and no
practical recording or listening environment will ever be that quiet. So
there's the "marketing bits" problem right of the bat. This is not to be
confused with digital processing, where I want even MORE than 24 bits.

However, that point is unnecessary for a basic answer to your question;
but remember, there are lots of little things like that where you have
to say "it depends", or could offer a caveat or a distinction.

I think you're making the mistake of assuming that the "low level stuff"
means that if the average recording level is above 16 bits' -96dB limit
then the extra bits are somehow not helpful. That's not neccessarily so.
Unless you have steady state noise, the signal is constantly rising and
falling. Also, there are quiet components to a signal (or even a mix),
and there are louder components. If not, you'd never hear the voice
above the string pad. In some cases, depending on what you are
recording, and where, and with what, and how you play it back, little
details that are quiet unto themselves can still have a positive impact
on the performance you capture.

Just because they are quiet components doesn't mean they are useless
when there's anything else going on. Sure, sometimes they are masked and
are indeed useless, but sometimes they are not. Remember what I said
above? It depends... There are indeed some things that do not benefit
from more than 16 bits, but some things really can use more, and for
that reason, I definitely support the idea of A/D conversion, mixing,
and processing at higher than 16 bits. It's not, however, because the
loud signals are captured more accurately. It's because the more subtle
details (which are lower level signals) are also recorded.

--
Jay Frigoletto
Mastersuite
Los Angeles
promastering.com
  #78  
Old November 18th 03, 11:59 PM
Arny Krueger
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Default 16 bit vs 24 bit, 44.1khz vs 48 khz <-- please explain

> wrote in message


> Justin Ulysses Morse > wrote:
>>
>> While it's true that the additional bits tack your extended
>> resolution onto "the bottom" of the dynamic range, it clearly
>> increases the resolution at all levels. You can have a -100dB
>> component to a -1dB signal, and you still want to hear it.

>
> Is the ear even capable of hearing the -100 component against the much
> louder -1? I thought masking prevented this.


The threshold of reliable perception of spurious signals and noise is on the
order of from -60 to -70 dB when the music has reasonably sustained peaks at
0 dB.

This is one reason why it's fair to say that the practical benefits of
going past 16 bits are non-existent at high levels.




  #79  
Old November 19th 03, 12:55 AM
Garthrr
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Default 16 bit vs 24 bit, 44.1khz vs 48 khz <-- please explain

In article >, Jay -
atldigi > writes:

>Absolutely not. I know there's a lot of posting going on, and I've
>written a lot in this thread, but I know I've stated several times that
>the above is not what I'm saying. Instead of adding even more
>confustion, please try to go back and read my posts again.



Sorry Jay. I was hoping to avoid that.

Garth~


"I think the fact that music can come up a wire is a miracle."
Ed Cherney
  #80  
Old November 19th 03, 12:55 AM
Garthrr
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Default 16 bit vs 24 bit, 44.1khz vs 48 khz <-- please explain

In article >, Jay -
atldigi > writes:

>I think you're making the mistake of assuming that the "low level stuff"
>means that if the average recording level is above 16 bits' -96dB limit
>then the extra bits are somehow not helpful.


No, I understand why you would think that but I am aware of what you mean in
that there are low level components to audio with a high average level and I
understand that they would benefit from the added dynamic range. That scenario,
however is not the crux of my question.

Garth~


"I think the fact that music can come up a wire is a miracle."
Ed Cherney
 




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