Done with digital

jep123

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I just bought a CD transport and find great joy of playing my old CD`s. I have a lot of them! This after a few years of streaming from Tidal/Roon only. Tidal is great of course, but I seem to be on a constant search for new music when I stream. Which makes for a somewhat stressful listening IMO. I seldom play the hole CD/ music when I stream, it is different with a CD.

JP
 
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Mike Lavigne

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I just bought a CD transport and find great joy of playing my old CD`s. I have a lot of them! This after a few years of streaming from Tidal/Roon only. Tidal is great of course, but I seem to be on a constant search for new music when I stream. Which makes for a somewhat stressful listening IMO. I seldom play the hole CD/ music when I stream, it is different with a CD.

JP
as far as playing whole albums, no doubt you have to find your own most satisfying rhythm of listening. it can be a case of unsettled smorgasboard listening, where you pile all these bits on your plate, and you jump around and never savor. but i went through that with CD's verses Lps, even tapes. i think it's simply a matter of self awareness of what is going on.

sometimes i'm in the mood for sampling, sometimes deep diving into related music, and other times i get on a kick for classic rock or jazz. or i hear a digital track and play the lp, or tape.

i can respect the tactile, muscle memory positive of CD spinning. quaint as it seems to be now. we do like (there is comfort in) our rituals. :)

i admit to thinking about adding a disc spinner to my system. but have not done it. my unused Oppo sits in the other room if i do get the urge.

i have my files, which i would relate to CD's (80% of my 3500 CD's are on my files), and those are my long term trusty musical companions. but mostly i get bored with those and explore. i'd say 2/3rd's of my listening to digital is to complete albums. i have playlists which include my file tracks and streaming tracks, with all sorts of different resolutions, dsd and pcm. no rules, no limits.

but happiness is where you find it.
 
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Audire

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this morning there are 27 new titles on Quboz Grand Selection.....from classical, to blues, to pop, to jazz, to rap.

and artist information, track attribution and cover examples, and related links to hundreds, thousands, maybe millions of albums of related music. and a question tab at the ready. and the web ready at hand for any related thing. it's trivial (cheap-cheap) to have streaming and a dac to play high rez versions if you already have a system. $20-$30 a month depending on the subscription if you are already able to post here.

not to mention on the spot playlists, or saved playlists for all sorts of reasons.

how can one not want this?

28 years ago now my kids were off to college and i jumped headlong into the high end. maybe the biggest single factor of learning for me was reading the backs of Lp's, even better the CD booklets (which had much more info in them), and learning about artists, and hifi magazines music reviews. as a 60's Rock n' Roll guy, it quickly expanded my musical landscape and allowed me to learn jazz, blues, and eventually classical. now i'm 70% classical. it was a great amount of effort expended. streaming is a much much better.....easier.......process.

i realize some pass on streaming, but it seems fundamental to the hobby to my views. YMMV.

I don’t think anyone is saying that streaming can’t be an aid to discovering new songs and albums. I have Qobuz as well and use it for such and when my health isn’t that good. But I’ve found very few “new” albums that are worth owning and when I do I normally would rather have the LP than a downloaded file.

I don’t like leasing automobiles, rather I purchase them. And I don’t like leasing my music I truly want. I like owning media. I like to touch, handle, and care for it. It’s just part of the hobby my father (and his friends) taught me decades ago. While I did leave it for a time, ultimately I discovered it was more a part of enjoying music than I had previously thought. It helps create more of an emotional bond to the music.

It’s fun. My wife and I enjoy going out to antique shops and record store hunting for good quality LPs. She’s really good at spotting them now. Of course sometimes I locate a CD or two as well. I recently put a bid in on a guy’s record collection of app 250 albums - estate sale. About fifty of these are still in their wrappers - unused, unplayed LPs. They are all soft rock from my generation. A gold mine to somebody for sure - hopefully mine
 
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facten

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I just bought a CD transport and find great joy of playing my old CD`s.

I have a Simaudio CD transport in my main system and play old and new CDs. Yes I buy all my new music on CD. When I'm in the mood to listen to a variety of music I go up to my 2nd system, hook up the IPOD Classic with about 3500 wav. files (smoothjazz, blues, rock, new wave) to a Wadia transport and my Modwright Elyse DAC set the IPOD to shuffle and let it select whatever tracks to play and get a dose of every genre on it as I listen
 
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TooCool4

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$20-$30 a month depending on the subscription if you are already able to post here.

how can one not want this?
I would rather pay that much for an album and own it. I find people with subscriptions, because they have access to a large amount of music don’t really listen to much in full.

I just came back from a BBQ at my brothers, he had music playing which most of the people there enjoyed, but he drove people mad as he kept jumping to other tracks / skipping tracks before the playing track had finished. I had to still his phone in the end to stop him jumping around. You don’t get this with people with physical media.
 

Mike Lavigne

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I would rather pay that much for an album and own it. I find people with subscriptions, because they have access to a large amount of music don’t really listen to much in full.

I just came back from a BBQ at my brothers, he had music playing which most of the people there enjoyed, but he drove people mad as he kept jumping to other tracks / skipping tracks before the playing track had finished. I had to still his phone in the end to stop him jumping around. You don’t get this with people with physical media.
it's child's play to program playlists. or any sort of musical direction. it's user error, not format flaw.

and being a DJ is thankless. you need to be situationally aware. don't blame that on digital. it can happen with Lp's too.
 
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TooCool4

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it's child's play to program playlists. or any sort of musical direction. it's user error, not format flaw.

and being a DJ is thankless. you need to be situationally aware. don't blame that on digital. it can happen with Lp's too.
I am not blaming digital, only that it's easier to do this kind of mess up's. He had a play list, but still jumped around. When I do things like this, I put a tape or something on and leave it to do it's stuff and turn over or change the tape when it needs doing and not just jump around with blanc skip or whatever. It's too easy to do with digital and people will do that.

One year at Munich High End show, I went into the Naim / Focal room and they had some nice music playing. I sat down to listen and the idiot doing the demo's started to jump around because he had ADHD or something and would never let the track finish, I have to admit I was not the only person that got up and walked out because of that idiot. Having the control with an iPad meant he did this, if it was physical media he would not be doing it.
 

caesar

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OTOH much new music is well recorded. and we can own plenty of analog era recordings yet no reason not to pursue new music.

really? i love my 12,000 records (and 250 master dubs on tape) too, but digital can be excellent and it's not so simple a picture as you represent. you seem to have a 'head in the sand' viewpoint. but we all walk our own path.

i have 20 terabytes of music on my server, adding more all the time. my server can hold 66 terabytes. so i can own plenty of digital files. but in reality access to new music by streaming is here to stay. the whole music industry is built upon it. but again; you can rationalize any slight into a reason to not play digital. we walk our own path.

youtube? i do that on my laptop. then find the higher rez file on streaming and listen to that on the Wadax.

why choose? i have both.......and i get access to new music constantly, ease of use with digital allows me to listen more. i listen to lots of classical music, and there has been essentially zero analog classical recorded in the last 20 years. so if i want more classical it's the only access. and it sounds wonderful.

i'm in it for the music.....as well as great sound.
Mike,
What's your take on "perfectly" digitized vinyl? From your perspective, how close is it to real vinyl? To digital?

For context, I have about 10TB of excellently captured digitized vinyl by someone who is a pro. However, I prefer CDs through my MBL and Esoteric reference transports to any streaming. But if I am streaming, I prefer digitized vinyl to any digital. And I do enjoy hearing my friends' vinyl rigs 10-12 times a year; definitely better than their digital in most cases.

Thanks in advance
 

wil

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It's a problem with people having short attention spans and a lack of listening skills. I'm streaming and I listen to full albums 99% of the time. In fact, I'll typically listen to the same album 3-4 days straight until I feel like I really "get it."
 

tima

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how can one not want this?

I thought the opening post answered that already.

... After having suffered thru every digital format available over the years, and never liking the sound of any of it, I am putting all my time, money and effort into my analog front-ends (turntable and tapedeck). ...
 
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Mike Lavigne

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Mike,
What's your take on "perfectly" digitized vinyl? From your perspective, how close is it to real vinyl? To digital?

For context, I have about 10TB of excellently captured digitized vinyl by someone who is a pro. However, I prefer CDs through my MBL and Esoteric reference transports to any streaming. But if I am streaming, I prefer digitized vinyl to any digital. And I do enjoy hearing my friends' vinyl rigs 10-12 times a year; definitely better than their digital in most cases.

Thanks in advance
not simple to answer.

i have 800-900 full Lp albums ripped to 2xdsd, and a few to quad dsd. they were done 6-8 years ago by a friend with the same tt' and cartridge and phono i used at that time, and almost 100% were pressings i owned, mostly i also owned the digital too. not sure how many TB that is but it's plenty.

i would rank these 2xdsd rips as better than the typical rip to 16/44, many times much better. i have played them quite a bit. OTOH if a good quality tape transfer of the recording to digital exists, at this point, most times the native pcm rip from tape is better. it does make a difference if the native rip was at 88/24 or 192/24, if it's only a 16/44 file i might prefer the 2xdsd rip. native matters.

when i say 'at this point' part of that is, that when those 2xdsd rips were done, the Playback Designs MPS-5 was my digital player. it upsampled everything to dsd. my friend had that same digital player too. so those rips had advantages as at that point pcm was less optimized than now.

those 2xdsd rips now i would describe as inconsistent. some are still really good, and resemble the vinyl lesser by degrees; missing the suspension of disbelief factor mostly. but many are not close to my vinyl now, as my vinyl has greatly advanced.

if we want to rank those 2xdsd rips against all digital, it's mixed. it depends on the quality of the recording and mastering.

with Roon you mostly get the option to hear 'versions' of recordings. with includes the choice of the 2xdsd rip, so often can listen to those in comparison to the Tidal versions including MQA and all the Quboz versions 16/44 and higher rez, and my own file choices. maybe 33% of the time the 2xdsd rip is my favorite for one reason or another with the Wadax, or the MSB prior. sometimes the vinyl rip is a touch softened and i prefer the more linear tape rip, or an original digital recording. digital just does not need fixing any more.

as far as streaming verses files for compares, with the MSB/Extreme the streaming was a step behind my files, with the Wadax Combo there is very little difference with the same resolution. not enough to effect how the recording compares to the rip.

as these 800-900 2xdsd rips were all great vinyl pressings to justify the effort to rip them, i've not had a case where i prefer the digital to the vinyl for these. none are close any more, not that they were ever that close.
 
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Tuckers

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I don’t like leasing automobiles, rather I purchase them.
And Qobuz lets you do just that. If you like an album, most are available at discount in their store. Buy an album and download it. Comes without any encryption or restrictions for you to store and play at your convenience, just like a CD. I believe you can also buy CD copies too.
 

Tuckers

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i have 800-900 full Lp albums ripped to 2xdsd,
Were these 24 bit or 32 bit DXD? To my ears 32 bit is quite a bit more special sounding than 24 bit. Not saying it would elevate them equal with your analog rig, but they sound much more analog-like to my ears.
 

Gregm

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i would rank (these) 2xdsd rips as better than the typical rip to 16/44, many times much better. i have played them quite a bit. OTOH if a good quality tape transfer of the recording to digital exists, at this point, most times the native pcm rip from tape is better. it does make a difference if the native rip was at 88/24 or 192/24, if it's only a 16/44 file i might prefer the 2xdsd rip. native matters.
Exactly my experience as well! Indeed, PCM 24/384 transfers sound even better than anything I have in my library at this time, including vinyl to DSD transfer (of course that begs the question of how good the original TT was...)
Not surprisingly, the actual player (i.e. the software) is also key to digital playback: going from Roon to Ideon's own app or the MusiChi player, the sonic improvements are considerable. On the other hand, Roon is very user friendly!
 

Audire

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And Qobuz lets you do just that. If you like an album, most are available at discount in their store. Buy an album and download it. Comes without any encryption or restrictions for you to store and play at your convenience, just like a CD. I believe you can also buy CD copies too.

Thanks, I already use Qobuz. Have so for years. I never said I didn’t use digital. Because of health reasons, I have it maximized in my system. But I still enjoy analogue more. And I don’t see that changing. Moreover, as I’ve stated repeatedly I don’t locate much newer music that is worth the price of admission.
 
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Mike Lavigne

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Were these 24 bit or 32 bit DXD? To my ears 32 bit is quite a bit more special sounding than 24 bit. Not saying it would elevate them equal with your analog rig, but they sound much more analog-like to my ears.

2xdsd use single bit noise shaping tech......not multi-bit pcm. most commercially available dsd recordings start out as PCM and are upsampled to dsd. or the dsd recording might be converted to pcm for mixing, prior to being mastered back to dsd for the SACD or dsd download.


i do have over 100 dxd 352-24 or 382-24 files/albums, mostly 24 bit. none of my vinyl rips are dxd. agree that it's likely better than even quad(4x)dsd, but the files are huge. my own best sounding digital files are 352-24 pcm tape transfers for sure. native 352-24 files are next best, but the tape transfers are best mostly because the recordings are outstanding choices, not because the tech is necessarily better.

as always; recording and performance quality rule. every time. some of my best sounding digital is native 44/16. these are typically simple live recordings. "first, do no wrong". that's always the hard part.
 
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caesar

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not simple to answer.

i have 800-900 full Lp albums ripped to 2xdsd, and a few to quad dsd. they were done 6-8 years ago by a friend with the same tt' and cartridge and phono i used at that time, and almost 100% were pressings i owned, mostly i also owned the digital too. not sure how many TB that is but it's plenty.

i would rank these 2xdsd rips as better than the typical rip to 16/44, many times much better. i have played them quite a bit. OTOH if a good quality tape transfer of the recording to digital exists, at this point, most times the native pcm rip from tape is better. it does make a difference if the native rip was at 88/24 or 192/24, if it's only a 16/44 file i might prefer the 2xdsd rip. native matters.

when i say 'at this point' part of that is, that when those 2xdsd rips were done, the Playback Designs MPS-5 was my digital player. it upsampled everything to dsd. my friend had that same digital player too. so those rips had advantages as at that point pcm was less optimized than now.

those 2xdsd rips now i would describe as inconsistent. some are still really good, and resemble the vinyl lesser by degrees; missing the suspension of disbelief factor mostly. but many are not close to my vinyl now, as my vinyl has greatly advanced.

if we want to rank those 2xdsd rips against all digital, it's mixed. it depends on the quality of the recording and mastering.

with Roon you mostly get the option to hear 'versions' of recordings. with includes the choice of the 2xdsd rip, so often can listen to those in comparison to the Tidal versions including MQA and all the Quboz versions 16/44 and higher rez, and my own file choices. maybe 33% of the time the 2xdsd rip is my favorite for one reason or another with the Wadax, or the MSB prior. sometimes the vinyl rip is a touch softened and i prefer the more linear tape rip, or an original digital recording. digital just does not need fixing any more.

as far as streaming verses files for compares, with the MSB/Extreme the streaming was a step behind my files, with the Wadax Combo there is very little difference with the same resolution. not enough to effect how the recording compares to the rip.

as these 800-900 2xdsd rips were all great vinyl pressings to justify the effort to rip them, i've not had a case where i prefer the digital to the vinyl for these. none are close any more, not that they were ever that close.

Thanks for sharing , Mike. For what it's worth, I am not a fan of DSD , except when material was originally recorded in DSD . I find DSD too smooth, lacking macro and micro dynamics compared to PCM. (Also, not a fan of MSB and dCS , unless in horn systems, because they lack the dynamics I crave.) Also, all of my rips were done "professionally" , to hires PCM, and with no speakers playing - to eliminate stylus picking up noise... most records used are pristine and original presses, touched by man 2 - 3 times only to rip.... can't wait for a streamer that I find comes close to my transports...

also, kind of surprised , since you have such a passion for digital , that you never tried CD transports with your DACs... even if you prefer streaming, it would be an interesting data point.
 

Mike Lavigne

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Thanks for sharing , Mike. For what it's worth, I am not a fan of DSD , except when material was originally recorded in DSD . I find DSD too smooth, lacking macro and micro dynamics compared to PCM.
all my rips are dsd native, and i find native dsd just fine on the right dac, but mostly it's not strictly native and not all dacs handle it right.
(Also, not a fan of MSB and dCS , unless in horn systems, because they lack the dynamics I crave.) Also, all of my rips were done "professionally" , to hires PCM, and with no speakers playing - to eliminate stylus picking up noise... most records used are pristine and original presses, touched by man 2 - 3 times only to rip
i'll take your word for it....professionally still is limited by the quality of the chain.....particularly with vinyl that matters.
.... can't wait for a streamer that I find comes close to my transports..
opposite for me. and at this point Wadax can't find a transport (and they have one of the best) that surpasses their streamer.....although they are trying hard to figure that out.
also, kind of surprised , since you have such a passion for digital , that you never tried CD transports with your DACs... even if you prefer streaming, it would be an interesting data point.
sure i have. back when i had my Aqua Formula dac i also acquired the Aqua La Diva transport with the AQlink interface. nice transport, and with Redbook it did surpass my 16/44 files (once i used the active Herzan resonance isolation under it). but i still preferred my higher rez files, and some of those i much preferred. then when the MSB came along game over, the MSB with 16/44 files was better. better transports might up the disc game a little, but not to where my digital is now.....IMHO.

a transport still temps me just to have it around for the odd disc that shows up. they do sound great, if not quite 'high rez'.
 
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Audire

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Our two favorite transports are the Vitus MP-T201 MK II CD Transport and the EMM TX2 Reference Transport. I like the top loading feature and CD weight on the Vitus (Philips drive if I recall correctly). The EMM (Esoteric drive) uses a fiber optic connection to our DAC. Both are superb.

Normally, I prefer CDs to streaming. But I prefer the TT over each of them. More than likely I’d like R2R above everything - if I owned one.… :cool:

 

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