is why music these days sounds bloody terrible.
238 posts • joined 14 Aug 2007
is why music these days sounds bloody terrible.
Right. Digital audio is described with two sets of numbers:
The SAMPLE RATE, which is a measure of the number of times an analogue wave form is measured per second, i.e frequency. This is your 44.1, 48, 96 KHz number.
The BIT DEPTH. (NOT, repeat NOT 'Bit Rate'.) This is your 16 bit or 24 bit number, and details the amplitude of the analogue waveform at the point where it was sampled. A 16 bit sample has 65,536 possible values (2^16), a 24 bit sample has 16,777,216 (2^24) possible values.
Because Bit Depth is a measure of a wave's amplitude, it can be used as an indicator of a sound's loudness, and this is where using 24 bit makes sense. All audio systems have two boundaries: the lower being the point where a signal becomes indistinguishable from background hiss (the noise floor) and the upper, reached when the signal level becomes so high that the system becomes unable to process it, causing distortion ('clipping', as the peaks and troughs of the waveform are clipped.)
A greater bit depth offers a wider Dynamic Range (more 'headroom') when digitally recording a sound - less background hiss (i.e. a lower noise floor) means that you can record extremely quiet sounds clearly; more numbers (2^24 at 24 bit compared to 2^16 at 16 bit) means you can record much louder sounds without the signal clipping.
In the olden days, even the best studio equipment was noisy, meaning that there was much less headroom available when recording. Studio engineers spent a lot of time managing input levels so that a recording would cleanly capture a performance without the quietest parts being lost in background noise or the loudest parts being clipped. 24 bit recording means that studio engineers don't have to do that any more, as the format offers them enough room to cleanly capture a performance, and if a guitarist decides to turn an amp up to 11, the engineer doesn't particularly have to worry about the signal clipping.
If not more importantly, considering that the vast majority of music made today is created almost entirely through software (including those beloved classic album remasters), the extra headroom that 24 bit offers means that a producer is able to pile on the signal processing effects without being forced to degrade the signal quality of the piece to do so.
24 bit audio is now indispensible in audio production, and people are already moving up to 32 bit floating point workflows.
What about for audio playback? As we know, 24 bit gives us a wider dynamic range - the difference between the quietest sound we can detect and the loudest we can cleanly process. Say you had a 24 bit audio file that consisted of a tone just distinguishable above the noise floor, which then increased to the point where it clips, and that you played this through a pair of capable speakers. By the time the playback finished, you would be in agony, and your hearing would be permanently damaged.
No piece of audio for playback would ever be put out that uses the entire dynamic range 24 bit offers. It would permanently damage customers' audio equipment and their hearing. All a 24 bit file gives you that is missing from a 16 bit recording is masses of dead, empty headroom in which there is nothing to hear, and that will never, ever get used.
Anyone who tells you that listening to a track rendered as a 24 bit file is 'better' than listening to the same audio rendered as 16 bit is a liar or a fool, and either selling you something or trying to justify something expensive they've bought.
"I met someone who looks a lot like you, she does the things you do - but she's an IBM".
At what point are ad blockers going to start using malware methods to hide themselves from being identified by websites?
Apparently these are special four dimensional crystals too.
(Obviously once I'd learned that, everything else just fell right in to place.)
"Customers will likely forget that pushing now, and upgrade hold-outs could move on."
You're on the money with the second part of that sentence at least, if by move on you mean move on to Mint.
When MS strip out the telemetry, allow update installation choice and offer a cast-iron guarantee that they will never introduce a subscription-based usage model, I might consider upgrading.
I'm tied to windows because of games and work software that don't (yet - I live in hope) have Linux versions. The moment that I can be windows free and still use the products I have bought, I'm off.
If you judge a man by his works, Lester was an absolutely top-drawer chap. I'm just glad that I've been able to delight in his inspired shed-based excellence.
2016, will you please just stop now?
It is, after all, the only way to be sure.
But the Grandstand theme tune was both aces and skill.
Telemetry and no control over updates. Those are my two absolute no-nos. Fix those in Windows 10 SE and I'll reconsider.
That's the correct response. No ads and charge a small fee for content. A pound or two for a month's subscription. The most important thing is for the publishers to make that as reasonable, quick, simple and seamless as possible.
I expect to see it arrive via OTA update on my Note 4 at the beginning of never.
Add Ghostery to your list to prevent tracking, beacons and all the underhand shit that marketers also use.
Fine, Lucas has the opportunity to tinker with his films. But the question isn't if what he's done is *right*, it's rather whether what he's done is *good*. The answer, with a couple of very minor exceptions, is "absolutely not". Not because of some purist vision holding the originals up as unalloyed masterpieces, because they weren't, but because almost everything he has added has detracted from what's happening on the screen, or was so bad that it was left on the editing room floor in the first place for a reason. Less is often more in cinema, and that's certainly true here.
Speaking of, did anyone else find the "judge of time" line to be particularly ominous?
Is the Doctor going to be going full Dredd on us?
Every single thing about the Doctor requires you suspend your disbelief. Unless you honestly think there really is a time travelling alien who travels the galaxy in a blue box that's smaller on the outside with a variety of human companions in tow.
x 7, allow me to introduce you to a concept common in fiction: Suspension of disbelief. Try it - you might find it helps you to enjoy TV drama a little more.
Do I look like a mug? You expect me to believe that in the future trees will have ears?
I don't know what the law in the US is, but surely there's some protection against constructive dismissal (as it's known here in the UK)
Gemma had integrated seamlessly into the hipster lifestyle.
Computers - fucking with your head since 6000 BC
Babbage's Spot The Difference Engine came with a few undocumented features.
I believe that phrase refers in part to the recent phenomenon of hugely profitable companies paying many* of their staff so little that those staff are only able to get by through receiving top-up benefits from the state.
* Except for the senior executives. They're paid enough not to need state handouts. They also refuse to contribute to those benefits the state has to pay by "mitigating their tax liabilities". After all, it's only the little people who pay tax.
I think I'm right in saying that after the war, the British sold Enigma machines to friendly governments, conveniently forgetting to mention the trivial fact that Enigma had been turned inside out by Bletchley.
As far as I could make out from the (excellent) BBC doc, it was Welchman's ideas and work on Traffic Analysis, as opposed to code-breaking, that the UK and US governments wanted suppressed, because it was TA that provided the basis of GCHQ and NSA's most powerful tools (and still does, in many ways).
Has Charles Arthur, Apple's inside man, been 'let go'?
I'd quite like to see a Tim Worstall piece on the economics of 'gaming' targets, actually.
This new armour's ridiculous. You've used far too much material.
... and I'm still doing very nicely on my overclocked D0 stepping Core i7 920 from five years ago, thank you very much. The GPU's been upgraded a couple of times and I've swapped out the rust for SSDs, but I have absolutely no need whatsoever for a new CPU, and expect not to until this one dies.
With hindsight, the Samsung marketing department realised that releasing live spiders at the launch event for their new octocore chip was a terrible mistake.
Hey! Not all spiders, right?
The obvious candidate is Computer Engineer Barbie.
This gorilla finds an iPhone - you won't BELIEVE what happens next!
How well will it run Crysis?
You forgot to mention the illegal immigrant angle!
How else do you interpret 60 million year old rocks? That boffins have failed God's test of faith?
They also managed to avoid getting any thumb prints on the canopy too.
Wasn't it Against A Dark Background?
I'm in the middle of an ongoing correspondence with Dropbox about this. So far they have been unable to list a single concrete example of the specific benefits that being a customer of Dropbox Ireland will give me.
It's rather suggestive to me of the fact that they're doing it for tax purposes rather than out of the goodness of their hearts and concern for their global customers' privacy.
This article might be absolutely on the money, but it feels more like someone's fishing around for a justification after the fact.
It's Tim Langdell, weeping in to his cocoa.
Bugger the story, top marks to that sub.
If you really know what you're talking about though, you use Pulp.
That is absolutely the last of the problems with TTIP.
I'd love that to be true, Tim, but my lefty gut reaction is that the workers are simply paid as little as the corporations can possibly get away with, and the money spirited away offshore is instead used to increase the rewards to the shareholders and the executives.
So it's not as if the workers have anything less that can be taken away from them if as you contest they would end up paying the corporation's tax burden.
However, I would be happy if you can prove me wrong!
That might just get me playing some Minecraft again.
... the main problem is that the "two speed internet" is seen simply - and rightly - as simply a method for corporate interests to rip everybody off. Again.
I'll see your 4g and raise you 3g. Rural high speed broadband? Fixed line or mobile, don't make me laugh.
No, Tim needs to change his view of the market :)
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