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Author Topic: 24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?  (Read 5719 times)

mark4man

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24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?
« on: June 02, 2004, 11:41:27 pm »

Crew,

All set to perform bit format & sample rate conversions (in WaveLab) for CD pre-mastering...

& I ran across an old e-mail response from one of the tech brains at Cakewalk (I was about to upgrade to SONAR; & asked them some basic questions regarding 24/96 to 16/44.1 conversions.)

Up until I read this e-mail this evening, I was convinced I would perform the conversions in the digital domain...

but the Support Tech from Cakewalk suggested that...because of the interpolation artifacts that the (digital) process introduces (no matter whose sample rate converters are used)...it's actually better to output the 24/96 file as analog; & recapture at 16/44.1...that the results have less inherent noise.

So, I wanted to ask...

What's the consensus in the forum?

Who converts in the digital domain...who recaptures the analog file...

...what kinds of results do you get; & why.

Thanks very much,

Sincerely,

mark4man
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jfrigo

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Re: 24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2004, 12:47:10 am »

mark4man wrote on Wed, 02 June 2004 20:41


Who converts in the digital domain...who recaptures the analog file...


Digital. A good sample rate converter like the Lavry 3000 or Sonic Solutions HD sounds great. Back in the earlier days of SRC, there were many nasty sounding ones, and a trip through a good set of converters may have been a potential improvement, but today, keeping it digital offers the best performance in my experience. However, we did rent a Lavry DAC924 for the last SACD session (to feed the Meitner AD), but 96k PCM to DSD conversion isn't the same thing as going from 96 PCM to 44.1 PCM. It's still early in the life of SACD.

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bblackwood

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Re: 24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?
« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2004, 07:59:07 am »

At this point, I avoid SRC like the plague as I have found nothing in software that is invisible and don't have a hardware SRC. Hopefully I'll have something soon to alleviate. More later.

jfrigo wrote on Wed, 02 June 2004 23:47

However, we did rent a Lavry DAC924 for the last SACD session (to feed the Meitner AD), but 96k PCM to DSD conversion isn't the same thing as going from 96 PCM to 44.1 PCM. It's still early in the life of SACD.

Cool, I didn't know you had done any SACD. What was the session you mastered for SACD, Jay?
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Brad Blackwood
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jfrigo

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Re: 24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2004, 03:53:33 pm »

I just posted a long response to Brad's post, but I got an error when I tried to post and then couldn't "backstep" to the page with all the typing. Frustrating. Let me try again....
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jfrigo

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Re: 24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?
« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2004, 04:13:13 pm »

bblackwood wrote on Thu, 03 June 2004 04:59

At this point, I avoid SRC like the plague as I have found nothing in software that is invisible and don't have a hardware SRC. Hopefully I'll have something soon to alleviate. More later.


As I was saying...
Brad,
I think you would be happy with the Lavry 3000, and the Weiss also seems like it would be worth looking into, but I haven't actually heard that one yet, so I can't say for sure. The Sonic HD background SRC sounds great and has some filter options which is nice, but it's not in-line/real-time like the hardward boxes, so it's not as convenient for many things.

When you get 96k sources, I guess you just D/A at 96 and go through the analog chain and A/D at 44.1? Once you get SRC in there, you may like to try the A/D at 96k and run the limiter at 96k. Then again, you may not. It will interesting to hear your impressions at that time.
Quote:


jfrigo wrote on Wed, 02 June 2004 23:47

However, we did rent a Lavry DAC924 for the last SACD session (to feed the Meitner AD), but 96k PCM to DSD conversion isn't the same thing as going from 96 PCM to 44.1 PCM. It's still early in the life of SACD.

Cool, I didn't know you had done any SACD. What was the session you mastered for SACD, Jay?



Notice the "we" as I imagine you must have. It was one of the sessions DC ("Dave Collins" for the acronym impaired) and I worked on together a little while after he made Mastersuite's studio his home base, with Dave EQing and me editing. It was The Yellowjackets "Time Squared" for Heads Up/Telarc, and was nominated for a 2004 Grammy in the Best Contemporary Jazz category. Rich Breen (richbreen.com) did a nice mix and the project was recorded to and mixed from Pro Tools HD at 96k, so I know that system can sound good in the right hands.

After prepping, we took the output of the Sonic HD into the rented Lavry DAC924 out to the Meitner converters and Genex that Telarc had sent along. I thought the original 96k PCM sounded better, but that could be because I was listening to the PCM through the DAC924 and the DSD through the Meitners. It sounded a little murkier after going through the Meitners. I haven't actually heard the hybrid SACD/CD since, so I don't know how the SRC'd 44.1 PCM sound next to the DSD on a universal consumer player.

David Glasser from Airshow could probably tell us what the latest SOTA is in PCM to DSD transcoding and whether it is satisfying to his ears. With my limited DSD experience, I'll leave it to him to expand upon the issue if he would like to.
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OTR-jkl

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Re: 24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?
« Reply #5 on: June 03, 2004, 04:34:37 pm »

Quote:

Who converts in the digital domain...who recaptures the analog file...

...what kinds of results do you get

FWIW-
I had a 48/24 project a little while back and used the SRC within Samp7 to knock it down to 44/16. As Brad can attest, the results using that method lack something to be desired... I don't have a HW SRC either so I'm not sure what I will do with the next one that comes in. Fortunately, most of my stuff comes in at 44/24 so its rarely an issue - so far...
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J Lowes ยท OTR Mastering
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mark4man

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Re: 24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?
« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2004, 06:50:53 pm »

Thanks all...

How about bouncing out to an Alesis Masterlink?

How are the converters in that device?

Thanks again,

mark4man
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bblackwood

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Re: 24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?
« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2004, 07:21:31 pm »

Not so great in my limited experince, Mark.

I have chosen to simply load twice when I need 48k stuff for DVD release as well as the normal 44.1k stuff for CD. I'd really like to have an async hardware box and am looking into an interesting option right now...
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Brad Blackwood
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bblackwood

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Re: 24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?
« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2004, 07:23:00 pm »

jfrigo wrote on Thu, 03 June 2004 15:13

Notice the "we" as I imagine you must have. It was one of the sessions DC ("Dave Collins" for the acronym impaired) and I worked on together a little while after he made Mastersuite's studio his home base, with Dave EQing and me editing.

Nice. How much editing goes on during one of those YJ sessions? In my experince those jazz guys have their stuff down cold way before mastering...
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Brad Blackwood
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David Glasser

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Re: 24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?
« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2004, 08:31:47 pm »

Quote:

jfrigo wrote on Thu, 03 June 2004 14:13
David Glasser from Airshow could probably tell us what the latest SOTA is in PCM to DSD transcoding and whether it is satisfying to his ears. With my limited DSD experience, I'll leave it to him to expand upon the issue if he would like to.



For PCM to DSD & DSD to PCM, we've been using the Prism ADA-8, and I think it sounds fine. I also use the Sony SBM-Direct software which runs on the Sonoma to make Red Book masters from DSD - it's stereo only and only outputs 44k (16 or 24 bit). It sounds very good. I'm interested to see what the new Phillips Pro-Tools thing is all about.

Re: PCM src - for real time stereo, I use the Weiss SFC-2. Excellent. Or the Prism ADA-8. For out-of-real time, the Sonic HD src can't be beat by anyone.
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David Glasser
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jfrigo

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Re: 24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?
« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2004, 08:44:57 pm »

bblackwood wrote on Thu, 03 June 2004 16:23

jfrigo wrote on Thu, 03 June 2004 15:13

Notice the "we" as I imagine you must have. It was one of the sessions DC ("Dave Collins" for the acronym impaired) and I worked on together a little while after he made Mastersuite's studio his home base, with Dave EQing and me editing.

Nice. How much editing goes on during one of those YJ sessions? In my experince those jazz guys have their stuff down cold way before mastering...


It depends...sometimes it's quite a bit. Let's take a few edit projects I did with Dave as an example. The X-Men 2 soundtrack ended up actually having quite a bit of editing. I sat with Casey Stone, the scoring mixer, for at least a couple hours dealing with little fine-tuning, enhancements, volume rides etc. His quote to me at the end was, "You really earned your money today." Add to that the normal assembly, sequencing, and PQ coding and it's actually more work than just throwing some start IDs on there.

With Sandro Albert, another jazz project mixed by Rich Breen, the artist and producer stayed for quite a while trying different sequences, fades, spacings, crossfades, volume adjustments etc, so again it wasn't just a simple PQ job. I also had to come back for a resequence a couple weeks later. Sometimes the artists can't quite make up their minds, but the material was nice as was the artist, so no big deal.

For the War remasters for Rhino/Warner, the original producer was in attendance and he kept me quite late doing "new, never before released edits" of a couple songs (but they left the classic "Lowrider" alone), plus copying the edit from an earlier release of another song, plus the two CDs worth of assembly that there were changes on, and multiple refs of alternate versions of things. Again, a fair amount of work for an "edit" session.

As for the Yellowjackets, we did the normal amount of messing around with spacing and fades and maybe tried an alternative here or there, but in their case, I'd say they were pretty well prepared and it went pretty quickly. I did have to come back and babysit a second Genex transfer for some reason, but I can't remember if we had to change something or fix something or if they needed another copy or what - I just remember that I had to meet the mixer again the next day to do some more work.

So, sometimes edit session are quite involved, sometimes not so involved, but they seldom turn out to be a simple Sequencing and assembly anymore. But hey, billable hours are billable hours. Do you get lots of simple edits, or are people getting pretty creative? It sure seems that many if not most of my clients enjoy the positive difference we can make during the editing stage.
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bblackwood

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Re: 24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?
« Reply #11 on: June 03, 2004, 08:47:55 pm »

jfrigo wrote on Thu, 03 June 2004 19:44

As for the Yellowjackets, we did the normal amount of messing around with spacing and fades and maybe tried an alternative here or there, but in their case, I'd say they were pretty well prepared and it went pretty quickly.

Kinda what I figured...

Quote:

Do you get lots of simple edits, or are people getting pretty creative? It sure seems that many if not most of my clients enjoy the positive difference we can make during the editing stage.

Hardly any editing nowadays (thank goodness)...
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Brad Blackwood
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jfrigo

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Re: 24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?
« Reply #12 on: June 03, 2004, 08:50:39 pm »

bblackwood wrote on Thu, 03 June 2004 17:47


Quote:

Do you get lots of simple edits, or are people getting pretty creative? It sure seems that many if not most of my clients enjoy the positive difference we can make during the editing stage.

Hardly any editing nowadays (thank goodness)...


Did you hire somebody to do your editing or is it just that there aren't client attended sessions with people wanting to try things?
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jfrigo

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Re: 24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?
« Reply #13 on: June 03, 2004, 08:56:05 pm »

bblackwood wrote on Thu, 03 June 2004 17:47

jfrigo wrote on Thu, 03 June 2004 19:44

As for the Yellowjackets, we did the normal amount of messing around with spacing and fades and maybe tried an alternative here or there, but in their case, I'd say they were pretty well prepared and it went pretty quickly.

Kinda what I figured...



They've made a record or two so I'd hope they've got it down by now. Plus, it's not like some of the classical guys who want to do hundreds of edits or the rap guys who crossfade in and out of skits every other song. Most jazz sessions are pretty smooth.
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bblackwood

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Re: 24/96 to 16/44.1 - Best Method?
« Reply #14 on: June 03, 2004, 09:12:24 pm »

jfrigo wrote on Thu, 03 June 2004 19:50

Did you hire somebody to do your editing or is it just that there aren't client attended sessions with people wanting to try things?

Haven't hired anyone yet, will most likely do so with the new room. Most clients do not attend, but even those that do don't usually want much editing - they usually take care of that at  the studio before-hand...
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Brad Blackwood
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