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#349988 - 06/11/11 01:44 PM CD sound Vs FLAC sound of the same track
William T-Basil Offline

Registered: 12/05/08
Posts: 4
Loc: Lichfield UK
I am searching for help on this one for sometime now. I hope I will have a few good responses.
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.

#350008 - 06/11/11 09:48 PM Re: CD sound Vs FLAC sound of the same track [Re: William T-Basil]
JohnK Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/11/02
Posts: 10621
William, hopefully posting this more prominently here, rather than somewhat buried in the Stunning Recordings thread, will draw a more specific response.

I'll add a couple more comments to what I said previously. As Ken indicated, accurate comparisons require a very precisely matched sound level, and playing the same material(CD and FLAC)on different players with possibly slightly different output levels into inputs with possibly slightly different sensitivities can easily affect the results. A small level difference can be misinterpreted as a quality difference.

Also, you seem to be viewing the confidence level 2 results you got as being somehow unfavorable. On the contrary, this isn't a relative accuracy of ripping number, but indicates that two other entries in their data banks matched your result, which is generally considered to be sufficient. Especially with both EAC and dBpoweramp giving that result, it's extremely likely that your rip was accurate and you should indeed be "confident" on this point.

Enjoy the music, not the equipment.

#350010 - 06/11/11 10:59 PM Re: CD sound Vs FLAC sound of the same track [Re: JohnK]
pmbuko Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 04/02/03
Posts: 16437
Loc: Ben Lomond, California
You should really listen to what John is saying. Your FLAC is almost certainly truly lossless and will generate a waveform indistinguishable from the original when played back at the same levels.

If you can't be convinced this way and you really want to put your FLAC to a proper test, re-burn the FLAC-ripped track to an audio CD at the slowest speed possible, and then have a friend, spouse, or anyone someone other than you play the original and the re-rip back to back on the same player. Make sure you do not know which is playing at which time so as to remove personal bias from your judgment.
I can explain it to you but I can't understand it for you.

#350029 - 06/12/11 11:58 AM Re: CD sound Vs FLAC sound of the same track [Re: pmbuko]
fredk Offline

Registered: 12/06/07
Posts: 7786
Loc: Canada
And don't forget to level match.

Oh, and don't forget the coffee and doughnuts, 'cause you just know you're going to want to invite us over. Oh, England. Tea and crumpits maybe? grin

Blujays1: Spending Fred's money one bottle at a time, no two... Oh crap!


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