The a cappella version of "Tom's Diner" by Suzanne Vega from the Solitude Standing album was one of the standard test selections for audio codec listening tests in Canada, the U.K. and Australia. I participated in the Ottawa tests for several days. If the data rate went below 320 kbps with virtually all of the lossy codecs, her voice would get a bit metallic and sibilant sounding. That track was very revealing of compression artifacts.
This may not be appropriate here but I have tried almost everywhere and i need help.
I bought the Onkyo TXNR609 because it has a USB input to be able to playback FLAC files.
1. I am disappointed to find that the play back of the ripped FLAC (44.1/16), via USB into Receiver, is not as good as the original CD.
2. My equipment: LG HL-DT-ST DVDRAM GMA-4020B ripping drive, Cambridge Audio 650BD DVD/CD player, Onkyo TXNR609 Receiver (with USB input having 192/24 DACs but only plays up to 96/24 FLAC files via USB).
Q1:Which is the weak link in the rip/playback chain? (a) Ripper drive, (b) EHD/USB output to Receiver or (c) receiver? I would personally discount (c). But I do not have enough knowledge to say which of the other two links. The track ripped by EAC gives a confidence 2 and ripped by dBpoweramp gives an accuracy of 2. Does this show I may need something like Plextor 230A or similar for ripping to a high accuracy? Or is there another reason? I need to eliminate the cause before I rip all my CDs.
The track used as a test is U2, The Joshua Tree, Where the streets have no name.
Any help will be most appreciated.