[LAD] Re: [linux-audio-dev] Direct Stream Digital / Pulse Density Modulation musing/questions

Paul Davis paul at linuxaudiosystems.com
Mon Sep 24 19:00:23 UTC 2007

On Mon, 2007-09-24 at 11:50 -0700, Maitland Vaughan-Turner wrote:

> > So, you have a way of objectively measuring how "analog" something
> > sounds? I'd be interested in hearing your methodology.
> not objectively.  I just use my ears.  I record my band and the detail
> and clarity of the recording in DSD format is striking (compared with
> PCM).  This kind of detail I can only hear when playing vinyl records.
>  That's why I say it sounds more "analog."

Thanks for playing. Next contestant please.

If you don't use double blind testing to evaluate subjective experience,
then you may as well not have bothered. This has been demonstrated
conclusively across many different fields and all human sensory
modalities. I don't know the audiophile world, many audio engineers and
quite a few musicians think they are so beyond this simple fact, but
that doesn't stop it from being a fact.

> Intuitively, one could also say that more sample points yield a
> waveform that is closer to a continuous, analog waveform.  Thus it
> sounds more analog.

That claim demonstrates a complete lack of understanding about the
relationship between digital and analog representations of acoustic
pressure waves.

> well, right, I'm saying the analog gear (that I have) is higher
> quality than the digital gear.

and i'm saying that you either have really bad digital gear, or you're
just wrong. 

> IMO, 1-bit recording is LSD not snake oil...

You haven't demonstrated much reason for me to have faith that you could
tell the difference. I don't say that to be insulting: hundreds or
thousands of people have been taken in by this sales job. The audio
world is full of charlatans and bogus claims and few people ever insist
on the most basic test (double blind comparison) to aid in identifying


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