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Thread: The Digital/Analog Dialectic

  1. #11
    [WBF Founding Member] Moderator RBFC's Avatar
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    Thanks for the tremendous effort, Gary! I'm very interested to hear what transpires.

    Lee
    Lee Aldridge

    I post my own opinions except when posting as a moderator in green.

  2. #12
    Addicted To Best
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    Rather than this being a digital vs. analog shoot-out, this is really a test to see if there is any audible degradation caused by the two stages of conversion.
    I agree entirely with this, and I, for one, will be fascinated to see the results here.

    Gary, the fact you have included such an experiment implies to me that you already have a view on this. Would that be the case, or would that be giving too much away?

    Congratulations on thinking up such a comprehensive test ...

    Frank
    Last edited by fas42; 01-26-2011 at 05:55 PM. Reason: had reread of OP

  3. #13
    WBF Technical Expert (Speakers & Audio Equipment)/Member Sponsor [Technical Expert] garylkoh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fas42 View Post
    I agree entirely with this, and I, for one, will be fascinated to see the results here.

    Gary, the fact you have included such an experiment implies to me that you already have a view on this. Would that be the case, or would that be giving too much away?

    Frank
    I have a very strong view that the system should get out of the way of the music and let everything through - analog or digital. If I put two more stages into the chain, they will be as transparent as I can make it.

    What ever the outcome, it will be very interesting.
    __________________________
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    Genesis Advanced Technologies

  4. #14
    [WBF Founding Member] Ron Party's Avatar
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    Gary, do you foresee any issue with the needle drop?
    Peace.

    Ron Party

  5. #15
    VIP/Donor [VIP/Donor] microstrip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garylkoh View Post
    As a basis of discussion, we have attempted to put together a system that is equally optimized for analog and digital. We will be able to compare high-quality analog playback with a pass through an ADC and DAC loop. While this is certainly not exhaustive, it will give attending members food for thought..... and whether with the system assembled, members in the acoustic space of the club meeting can hear the difference between straight analog, and analog digitized and then converted back to analog.
    Gary,
    I would love to be present, however too many miles separate us ...

    As I have expressed before, I think it is impossible to put together a system that is equally optimized for analog and digital. We compromise something when we want to have both, and most of the time the preference will be due to the system, not only the media. However, as your music choices cover a wide spectrum it would be very interesting to evaluate the preferences versus recordings.

    BTW, the ADC- DAC tests will be of great value especially if the preference is for the analog.

  6. #16
    WBF Technical Expert (Speakers & Audio Equipment)/Member Sponsor [Technical Expert] garylkoh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Party View Post
    Gary, do you foresee any issue with the needle drop?
    Not sure I understand you.

    My preamp has two balanced inputs. I have determined that they sound identical. I have two identical balanced interconnects. The analog output of the phono stage will be connected to one input, and the DAC will be connected to another input. The digital output of the phono stage will be connected to the DAC. The DAC will be level matched with the phono stage.

    With every new album, we will start with one input or the other. The operator (me) will be the only one who knows which input we start with. You will hear the needle drop on both analog and digital. We will flip between the two inputs, and I'll have the audience discuss any difference (if any).

    I don't know yet what the outcome will be. Since the phono stage can output 24bit in 44.1kHz, 96kHz and 192kHz, I suspect that with certain kinds of music, we might be able to hear some difference.
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    Gary L Koh, CEO and Chief Designer,
    Genesis Advanced Technologies

  7. #17
    [WBF Founding Member] Ron Party's Avatar
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    If you switch sources in the middle of a track, will the participants know?
    Peace.

    Ron Party

  8. #18
    And the blind test would possibly prove that people couldn’t tell the difference between the two?
    Nah. You'd need a very carefully set up test and a lot of trials to prove anything Mep, but I still think level-matched blind listening yields more interesting results than a couple of chaps like you and I watching a turntable spin and deciding that I like digital better and you like vinyl. That wouldn't even be surprising, much less interesting. But if I liked the original vinyl better, or you couldn't reliably tell which was which...that would be interesting.

    Tim
    In high-end audio, you can't even fight an opinion with the facts.

  9. #19
    [WBF Founding Member] Gregadd's Avatar
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    I'm definitely for level matching.
    Be civil to all, sociable to many, familiar with few, friendly to one, and enemy to none.
    Benjamin Franklin

  10. #20
    Gary, are you planning on comparing the vinyl to needledrop digital at different sampling rates?

    Tim
    In high-end audio, you can't even fight an opinion with the facts.

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