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Thread started 05/22/20 6:39am

VaultCurator

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‘U Make My Sunshine / When Will We B Paid’ Retail CD – Lossy sound quality! WTF?

Hi everyone. I don’t know if anyone’s ever brought this up before (I couldn’t find any old threads) but I’ve just discovered my CD single of ‘U Make My Sunshine’ is in lossy quality.

I was just sorting through my FLAC files and run a spectral analysis on ‘When Will We B Paid?’ to make sure it was definitely the version I ripped from my own CD, and to my surprise it was clearly a lossy version. So I re-ripped my CD, checked both ‘U Make My Sunshine’ and ‘When Will We B Paid’ and I was shocked to discover it was the same again, for both tracks.

So I checked ‘U Make My Sunshine’ from The Chocolate Invasion (Tidal FLACs) and that version was fine. No data loss at all.

At this point I was thinking to myself ‘Is my CD a fake?’ I bought it from a proper retail store when it was first released and the quality of the disc is great with a metallic finish on the artwork.


I set it aside and purchased ‘When Will We B Paid?’ from Tidal as a stand-alone FLAC… and again, it was lossy!

Was Prince selling the NPGMC WMA files on CD? And was the lossy CD ripped and uploaded to Tidal?

Has anyone else checked this? Also, has anyone here got the other 2001 singles like ‘Supercute’ and ‘The Daisy Chain’? Are they lossy as well?

If my CD is genuine then this is lazy as hell! Why weren't the proper masters used when pressing these CDs, or used for the modern download stores?

I’ve attached an image to illustrate...

Ax5rq7h.jpg

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Reply #1 posted 05/22/20 7:12am

databank

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Shocking, of course, but not too surprising given how things were handled at Paisley Park at that time. However, the most important information here is that you didn't realize this in 20 years, probably no one here did. This suggests that you, like most people, can't hear the different between decent lossy and lossless, that you only think you hear it when you KNOW what the file is, and that all the efforts you are putting into making sure your files are lossless are a debatable use of your time lol
But at least it allowed you to find this info, and it's funny so thank you for that biggrin
A COMPREHENSIVE PRINCE DISCOGRAPHY (work in progress ^^): https://sites.google.com/...iscog/home
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Reply #2 posted 05/22/20 10:59am

ElGorillos

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'Groovy Potential' is lossy too IIRC.


EG

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Reply #3 posted 05/22/20 11:25am

lavendardrumma
chine

The scans for U Make My Sunshine aren't exact matches for whatever that's worth.

I mean, doesn't most of the music from that era sound like it's being held back slightly? It does to me. There's a warmth missing. I do think Tidal is using CD's or the same files that were used to press CD's in a lot of cases. It's lazy but it's also realistic, and realistic than when it came time to throw those tracks on a CD, they used what was circulating for a lot of it. Also keep in mind, if portions of the song were originally done in like ADAT or something, then it barely matters anyway. It's like going to see a movie in 70MM that was shot 35MM.


Waveforms are a visualization, you're listening to the sound, so if your ears can't detect a difference that's consequential, it shouldn't matter too much. It's possible the digital loss of a generation even helped some songs.

[Edited 5/22/20 11:28am]

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Reply #4 posted 05/22/20 12:56pm

lustmealways

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ElGorillos said:

'Groovy Potential' is lossy too IIRC.


EG

just had a look, and hard cutoff at 16khz. that's crazy.

that song still jams, though.

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Reply #5 posted 05/22/20 1:00pm

AvocadosMax

lustmealways said:



ElGorillos said:


'Groovy Potential' is lossy too IIRC.


EG



just had a look, and hard cutoff at 16khz. that's crazy.


that song still jams, though.


I always had a theory Prince just either trashed the master or lost it for some reason and just used the download file for the album lol
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Reply #6 posted 05/22/20 1:09pm

VaultCurator

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lustmealways said:

ElGorillos said:

'Groovy Potential' is lossy too IIRC.


EG

just had a look, and hard cutoff at 16khz. that's crazy.

that song still jams, though.


It's not just Groovy Potential. I've just checked. 4 tracks on Hit N Run II are lossy compressed...

2.Y.2.D
Groovy Potential
When She Comes
Screwdriver

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Reply #7 posted 05/22/20 1:11pm

VaultCurator

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I’m not claiming to be an audiophile here. True, I could listen to a HD track and a 320kb MP3 side by side and most likely wouldn’t be able to tell the difference. However, there is a reason I try to back up the highest fidelity versions as possible.

The truth is, I don’t make playlists in the same way most people do. I know most people open up their media player, drag a bunch of songs into a sequence and hit play. This doesn’t work for me. I hate listening to songs with disjointed transitions and the volume leaping up and down between tracks. Instead I make my own compilations.

I open my home studio software, import the music, normalise the volume, make tweaks and edits where I see fit, fix and create new transitions between songs, then I’ll either burn a CD or export it to my media player. This is why I try to work from CD quality tracks from the beginning, because I’m likely to create my own MP3s for listening when I’m on the go. If the masters I’m working from are already lossy before I create my own MP3s, then I’m down to second generation lossy. I’d be adding an extra layer of compression to songs that are already compressed. It’s just best practice for me to try to avoid this where possible.

Is it unreasonable to expect CD quality audio if I buy a CD? Or lossless when I pay extra for the FLAC over the MP3?

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Reply #8 posted 05/22/20 1:19pm

AvocadosMax

VaultCurator said:

I’m not claiming to be an audiophile here. True, I could listen to a HD track and a 320kb MP3 side by side and most likely wouldn’t be able to tell the difference. However, there is a reason I try to back up the highest fidelity versions as possible.

The truth is, I don’t make playlists in the same way most people do. I know most people open up their media player, drag a bunch of songs into a sequence and hit play. This doesn’t work for me. I hate listening to songs with disjointed transitions and the volume leaping up and down between tracks. Instead I make my own compilations.

I open my home studio software, import the music, normalise the volume, make tweaks and edits where I see fit, fix and create new transitions between songs, then I’ll either burn a CD or export it to my media player. This is why I try to work from CD quality tracks from the beginning, because I’m likely to create my own MP3s for listening when I’m on the go. If the masters I’m working from are already lossy before I create my own MP3s, then I’m down to second generation lossy. I’d be adding an extra layer of compression to songs that are already compressed. It’s just best practice for me to try to avoid this where possible.

Is it unreasonable to expect CD quality audio if I buy a CD? Or lossless when I pay extra for the FLAC over the MP3?



I do the same! I use Audacity. I fadded out If Eye Was The Man N Ur Life and it transitions into She Loves Me 4 Me perfectly! Recently stitched together the Syracuse performance of ‘How Come’ with the 82 Detroit show version. Inspired by an edit by a YouTuber Dickie Holmes or something like that. I think he deleted his channel but he had some great edits I saved.
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Reply #9 posted 05/22/20 1:28pm

fredmagnus

"Velvet Kitty Cat" from PR Deluxe & "WYL2LM" from Originals are also sourced from lossy files.

Sometimes, these kinds of things can also happen during the mastering process.
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Reply #10 posted 05/22/20 1:53pm

PurpleMusic768
9

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fredmagnus said:

"Velvet Kitty Cat" from PR Deluxe & "WYL2LM" from Originals are also sourced from lossy files. Sometimes, these kinds of things can also happen during the mastering process.

"Velvet Kitty Cat" was sourced from the 2016 tape leak. That was only 320kbps, so they couldn't really do much for that (though the EQ is quite "messy").

"Wouldn't U Love To Love Me?" was one that was a bit surprising that no one in charge noticed and had it fixed before mass pressings and the Tidal (of all places for a MP3) release. However, that one sounds like some really bad attempt on behalf of Michael Howe and Niko Bolas to mask some of the possibly inferior source sound quality (brickwalling only made it worse).

usually known as "Leaped7689"
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Reply #11 posted 05/22/20 2:47pm

EnDoRpHn

VaultCurator said:

Hi everyone. I don’t know if anyone’s ever brought this up before (I couldn’t find any old threads) but I’ve just discovered my CD single of ‘U Make My Sunshine’ is in lossy quality.

I was just sorting through my FLAC files and run a spectral analysis on ‘When Will We B Paid?’ to make sure it was definitely the version I ripped from my own CD, and to my surprise it was clearly a lossy version. So I re-ripped my CD, checked both ‘U Make My Sunshine’ and ‘When Will We B Paid’ and I was shocked to discover it was the same again, for both tracks.

So I checked ‘U Make My Sunshine’ from The Chocolate Invasion (Tidal FLACs) and that version was fine. No data loss at all.

At this point I was thinking to myself ‘Is my CD a fake?’ I bought it from a proper retail store when it was first released and the quality of the disc is great with a metallic finish on the artwork.


I set it aside and purchased ‘When Will We B Paid?’ from Tidal as a stand-alone FLAC… and again, it was lossy!

Was Prince selling the NPGMC WMA files on CD? And was the lossy CD ripped and uploaded to Tidal?

Has anyone else checked this? Also, has anyone here got the other 2001 singles like ‘Supercute’ and ‘The Daisy Chain’? Are they lossy as well?

If my CD is genuine then this is lazy as hell! Why weren't the proper masters used when pressing these CDs, or used for the modern download stores?

I’ve attached an image to illustrate...

Ax5rq7h.jpg

Not to totally change the subject, but could you do this to compare the Lovesexy and Black Album CD versions of "When 2 R In Love"?

I've long been under the impression that TBE official release is deliberately compromised, either out of spite or to give it a "bootleg" feel.

[Edited 5/22/20 14:51pm]

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Reply #12 posted 05/22/20 5:14pm

VaultCurator

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EnDoRpHn said:

Not to totally change the subject, but could you do this to compare the Lovesexy and Black Album CD versions of "When 2 R In Love"?

I've long been under the impression that TBE official release is deliberately compromised, either out of spite or to give it a "bootleg" feel.

[Edited 5/22/20 14:51pm]


Hi EnDoRpHn



I’ve done a few tests comparing ‘When 2 R In Love’ between The Black Album & Lovesexy. There are subtle differences, but they are incredibly minor. As you can see the spectral analysis is virtually identical. On really close inspection there is slightly more data in the quieter sections with The Black Album version maxing out around 20.2KHz and Lovesexy reaching around 20.6KHz. This variation is so subtle it’s barely worth mentioning.

I mixed both tracks to mono and played them through separate speaker channels to see if there was any difference in volume. The average volume was pretty much a consistent match throughout the track, however the peak volume was around 1db – 1.5db louder on the Black Album. This gives ‘The Black Album’ version a slightly higher dynamic range.

It could be that the lower dynamic range on ‘Lovesexy’ gave the track a fuller sound to your ears, but like I say, the differences are tiny.

Also across the length of the track, the ‘Lovesexy’ version is marginally faster. I played both tracks simultaneously from the first beat and by the end of the song the Lovesexy version had inched ahead, but this is quite common when dealing with analogue tape.

Overall I can’t see any evidence that either version was treated with any sort of neglect. To me, any differences appear to be the result of the two LPs being mastered separately on analogue equipment.

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Reply #13 posted 05/23/20 1:36am

FunkyStrange

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Now this is my kind of thread smile
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Reply #14 posted 05/23/20 4:13am

olb99

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FunkyStrange said:

Now this is my kind of thread smile


Yes. Me too. I know I'm repeating myself, here, but this kind of information (sound quality, glitches/"bugs", different masters, weird edits, etc.) should be compiled on a single page somewhere (PrinceVault would be ideal). It was on my to-do list at some point and then life took over as usual.

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Reply #15 posted 05/23/20 9:13am

databank

avatar

VaultCurator said:

I’m not claiming to be an audiophile here. True, I could listen to a HD track and a 320kb MP3 side by side and most likely wouldn’t be able to tell the difference. However, there is a reason I try to back up the highest fidelity versions as possible.

The truth is, I don’t make playlists in the same way most people do. I know most people open up their media player, drag a bunch of songs into a sequence and hit play. This doesn’t work for me. I hate listening to songs with disjointed transitions and the volume leaping up and down between tracks. Instead I make my own compilations.

I open my home studio software, import the music, normalise the volume, make tweaks and edits where I see fit, fix and create new transitions between songs, then I’ll either burn a CD or export it to my media player. This is why I try to work from CD quality tracks from the beginning, because I’m likely to create my own MP3s for listening when I’m on the go. If the masters I’m working from are already lossy before I create my own MP3s, then I’m down to second generation lossy. I’d be adding an extra layer of compression to songs that are already compressed. It’s just best practice for me to try to avoid this where possible.

Is it unreasonable to expect CD quality audio if I buy a CD? Or lossless when I pay extra for the FLAC over the MP3?

I feel ya, no problem yes And no, I guess it's not at all unreasonable to expect the product to be what it claims to be. Even more if it's a Flac file since the whole commercial argument is the lack of compression.

This being said, Prince gave us all this lecturing about analogic vs digital but he never was an audiophile himself (as explained by his engineers). I also find it very hard to believe that after constantly exposing himself to loud music for 40 years, his hearing would be intact (many rock stars suffer from hearing loss, tinnitus, etc.).

A COMPREHENSIVE PRINCE DISCOGRAPHY (work in progress ^^): https://sites.google.com/...iscog/home
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Reply #16 posted 05/23/20 9:16am

databank

avatar

VaultCurator said:

lustmealways said:

just had a look, and hard cutoff at 16khz. that's crazy.

that song still jams, though.


It's not just Groovy Potential. I've just checked. 4 tracks on Hit N Run II are lossy compressed...

2.Y.2.D
Groovy Potential
When She Comes
Screwdriver

This is really fucked up falloff

Then again, no one noticed so this is again proof that it really makes no difference for most listeners. But it's still ridiculously unprofessional from P's (or, most likely, his staff) part. Of course, this shouldn't have happened.

A COMPREHENSIVE PRINCE DISCOGRAPHY (work in progress ^^): https://sites.google.com/...iscog/home
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Reply #17 posted 05/23/20 9:18am

databank

avatar

fredmagnus said:

"Velvet Kitty Cat" from PR Deluxe & "WYL2LM" from Originals are also sourced from lossy files. Sometimes, these kinds of things can also happen during the mastering process.

Ha! Crazy! Thx for the info smile

A COMPREHENSIVE PRINCE DISCOGRAPHY (work in progress ^^): https://sites.google.com/...iscog/home
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Reply #18 posted 05/23/20 9:20am

databank

avatar

olb99 said:

FunkyStrange said:

Now this is my kind of thread smile


Yes. Me too. I know I'm repeating myself, here, but this kind of information (sound quality, glitches/"bugs", different masters, weird edits, etc.) should be compiled on a single page somewhere (PrinceVault would be ideal). It was on my to-do list at some point and then life took over as usual.

I would gladly host it on my site if u ever finish it and u want it to be on a site alongside other Prince-related content (because of course you could create a google site/blog in 2 minutes and put it there).

A COMPREHENSIVE PRINCE DISCOGRAPHY (work in progress ^^): https://sites.google.com/...iscog/home
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Reply #19 posted 05/23/20 9:22am

databank

avatar

VaultCurator said:

EnDoRpHn said:

Not to totally change the subject, but could you do this to compare the Lovesexy and Black Album CD versions of "When 2 R In Love"?

I've long been under the impression that TBE official release is deliberately compromised, either out of spite or to give it a "bootleg" feel.

[Edited 5/22/20 14:51pm]


Hi EnDoRpHn



I’ve done a few tests comparing ‘When 2 R In Love’ between The Black Album & Lovesexy. There are subtle differences, but they are incredibly minor. As you can see the spectral analysis is virtually identical. On really close inspection there is slightly more data in the quieter sections with The Black Album version maxing out around 20.2KHz and Lovesexy reaching around 20.6KHz. This variation is so subtle it’s barely worth mentioning.

I mixed both tracks to mono and played them through separate speaker channels to see if there was any difference in volume. The average volume was pretty much a consistent match throughout the track, however the peak volume was around 1db – 1.5db louder on the Black Album. This gives ‘The Black Album’ version a slightly higher dynamic range.

It could be that the lower dynamic range on ‘Lovesexy’ gave the track a fuller sound to your ears, but like I say, the differences are tiny.

Also across the length of the track, the ‘Lovesexy’ version is marginally faster. I played both tracks simultaneously from the first beat and by the end of the song the Lovesexy version had inched ahead, but this is quite common when dealing with analogue tape.

Overall I can’t see any evidence that either version was treated with any sort of neglect. To me, any differences appear to be the result of the two LPs being mastered separately on analogue equipment.

Interesting, thx for doing the work smile

A COMPREHENSIVE PRINCE DISCOGRAPHY (work in progress ^^): https://sites.google.com/...iscog/home
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Reply #20 posted 05/23/20 9:50am

asideorderofha
m

VaultCurator said:

Has anyone else checked this? Also, has anyone here got the other 2001 singles like ‘Supercute’ and ‘The Daisy Chain’? Are they lossy as well?


I have The Daisy Chain and Peace - both are lossless.

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Reply #21 posted 05/23/20 10:00am

asideorderofha
m

VaultCurator said:

It's not just Groovy Potential. I've just checked. 4 tracks on Hit N Run II are lossy compressed...

2.Y.2.D
Groovy Potential
When She Comes
Screwdriver


Screwdriver is lossy on the HNR2 CD, but the original single download is not!

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Reply #22 posted 05/23/20 12:10pm

fredmagnus

asideorderofham said:

VaultCurator said:

It's not just Groovy Potential. I've just checked. 4 tracks on Hit N Run II are lossy compressed...

2.Y.2.D
Groovy Potential
When She Comes
Screwdriver


Screwdriver is lossy on the HNR2 CD, but the original single download is not!

Indeed, when HNR2 came out i replaced the album file by the single one.

I didn't check the frequencies but the single file just sounded better. I didn't know that one was lossy too so now i understand better why it didn't sound as good as the single version.

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Reply #23 posted 05/23/20 12:59pm

leecaldon

VaultCurator said:

EnDoRpHn said:

Not to totally change the subject, but could you do this to compare the Lovesexy and Black Album CD versions of "When 2 R In Love"?

I've long been under the impression that TBE official release is deliberately compromised, either out of spite or to give it a "bootleg" feel.

[Edited 5/22/20 14:51pm]


Hi EnDoRpHn



I’ve done a few tests comparing ‘When 2 R In Love’ between The Black Album & Lovesexy. There are subtle differences, but they are incredibly minor. As you can see the spectral analysis is virtually identical. On really close inspection there is slightly more data in the quieter sections with The Black Album version maxing out around 20.2KHz and Lovesexy reaching around 20.6KHz. This variation is so subtle it’s barely worth mentioning.

I mixed both tracks to mono and played them through separate speaker channels to see if there was any difference in volume. The average volume was pretty much a consistent match throughout the track, however the peak volume was around 1db – 1.5db louder on the Black Album. This gives ‘The Black Album’ version a slightly higher dynamic range.

It could be that the lower dynamic range on ‘Lovesexy’ gave the track a fuller sound to your ears, but like I say, the differences are tiny.

Also across the length of the track, the ‘Lovesexy’ version is marginally faster. I played both tracks simultaneously from the first beat and by the end of the song the Lovesexy version had inched ahead, but this is quite common when dealing with analogue tape.

Overall I can’t see any evidence that either version was treated with any sort of neglect. To me, any differences appear to be the result of the two LPs being mastered separately on analogue equipment.

Love reading this.

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Reply #24 posted 05/26/20 7:51pm

databank

avatar

1 page thread only? Funny. Where are all the lossless integrists who usually jump at you everytime you are unfortunate enough to say you listen to mp3? Those same people calling you deaf because they sure can hear what you can't and everyone else can as well but you? None to be seen? Wow! Good. This is a TYPICAL example of science shutting down bullies. Many thanks to VaultCurator for this hug yes

A COMPREHENSIVE PRINCE DISCOGRAPHY (work in progress ^^): https://sites.google.com/...iscog/home
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Reply #25 posted 05/27/20 6:02am

lurker316

avatar


I once came across a blog post favoring of lossless audio files that had a very different argument from the standard one we typically hear.

The guy conceded that 99% of people, including himself, can't tell the difference. So for him, the importance of a lossless file had nothing to do with sound quality.

Rather, he was concerned with file degradation. We like to think of files as permanent, but they degraded over time just like everything else. For example, every time you make a copy of a file you likely lose a few bits of data.

The degradation is extremely minor. However, if your file has a smaller amount of data to being with (such as a lossy audio file), that minor degradation is more likely to have an impact on its quality. Conversly, if your file has a ton of data (such as a lossless audio file), that minor degradation is not likely to be noticable.

I don't know if that's true, but it sounded reasonable to me.



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Reply #26 posted 05/27/20 7:52am

BartVanHemelen

avatar

lurker316 said:


Rather, he was concerned with file degradation. We like to think of files as permanent, but they degraded over time just like everything else. For example, every time you make a copy of a file you likely lose a few bits of data.

.

Utter nonsense. The only way a file "loses a few bits of data" is if its carrier gets corrupted (i.e. your HD, etc.).

.

You can send files over the internet, all accross the world through numerous routers and switches etc. and when it arrives at its destination it is exactly the same file (if it didn't get corrupted along the way through various possible network failures). If you want to make sure the receiver can check they're identical, you can use the likes of .MD5 or .SFV files, or even better parity files (which could include additional volumes to enable repairing the file).

.

(Audio CDs even come with built-in error correction. If you use EAC with the proper settings you'll see that software check each track for errors. See also http://www.accuraterip.com/ .)

.



The degradation is extremely minor. However, if your file has a smaller amount of data to being with (such as a lossy audio file), that minor degradation is more likely to have an impact on its quality. Conversly, if your file has a ton of data (such as a lossless audio file), that minor degradation is not likely to be noticable.

I don't know if that's true, but it sounded reasonable to me.



.

Nonsense. Recoding is the issue. If you do WAV -> MP3 -> WAV the resulting .WAV file is nothing like the original. The MP3 codec is lossy. If you do WAV -> FLAC -> WAV, then the resulting .WAV file is *exactly* the same as the one you started out with.

.

The problem with lossless is this: if you do WAV -> MP3 -> WAV -> MP3, then your second .MP3 file will sound slightly worse than the first. And that is the problem here: when they released a CD with a track that was sourced from a lossy source, you as a consumer start with a source file that was already compromised by going through *two* lossy conversions. (Yes two, because MP3 -> WAV is also a lossy conversion. If you take an .MP3 file, and convert it back to a .WAV file two times, you'll find that the resulting .WAV files are not exactly the same.)

.

You can compare this to the effect when you re-save a .JPEG file over and over: https://fstoppers.com/edu...ion-435235 .

© Bart Van Hemelen
This posting is provided AS IS with no warranties, and confers no rights.
It is not authorized by Prince or the NPG Music Club. You assume all risk for
your use. All rights reserved.
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Reply #27 posted 05/27/20 8:00am

Krid

lurker316 said:


I once came across a blog post favoring of lossless audio files that had a very different argument from the standard one we typically hear.

The guy conceded that 99% of people, including himself, can't tell the difference. So for him, the importance of a lossless file had nothing to do with sound quality.

Rather, he was concerned with file degradation. We like to think of files as permanent, but they degraded over time just like everything else. For example, every time you make a copy of a file you likely lose a few bits of data.

The degradation is extremely minor. However, if your file has a smaller amount of data to being with (such as a lossy audio file), that minor degradation is more likely to have an impact on its quality. Conversly, if your file has a ton of data (such as a lossless audio file), that minor degradation is not likely to be noticable.

I don't know if that's true, but it sounded reasonable to me.



That is interesting - a little bit like vinyl records getting slightly more worn out every time you play them... I guess you can then collect digital files as well and say they are in "mint condition" - never copied, never played - just kidding biggrin
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Reply #28 posted 05/27/20 11:24am

olb99

avatar

BartVanHemelen said:

lurker316 said:


Rather, he was concerned with file degradation. We like to think of files as permanent, but they degraded over time just like everything else. For example, every time you make a copy of a file you likely lose a few bits of data.

.

Utter nonsense. The only way a file "loses a few bits of data" is if its carrier gets corrupted (i.e. your HD, etc.).

.

You can send files over the internet, all accross the world through numerous routers and switches etc. and when it arrives at its destination it is exactly the same file (if it didn't get corrupted along the way through various possible network failures). If you want to make sure the receiver can check they're identical, you can use the likes of .MD5 or .SFV files, or even better parity files (which could include additional volumes to enable repairing the file).

.

(Audio CDs even come with built-in error correction. If you use EAC with the proper settings you'll see that software check each track for errors. See also http://www.accuraterip.com/ .)

.



The degradation is extremely minor. However, if your file has a smaller amount of data to being with (such as a lossy audio file), that minor degradation is more likely to have an impact on its quality. Conversly, if your file has a ton of data (such as a lossless audio file), that minor degradation is not likely to be noticable.

I don't know if that's true, but it sounded reasonable to me.



.

Nonsense. Recoding is the issue. If you do WAV -> MP3 -> WAV the resulting .WAV file is nothing like the original. The MP3 codec is lossy. If you do WAV -> FLAC -> WAV, then the resulting .WAV file is *exactly* the same as the one you started out with.

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The problem with lossless is this: if you do WAV -> MP3 -> WAV -> MP3, then your second .MP3 file will sound slightly worse than the first. And that is the problem here: when they released a CD with a track that was sourced from a lossy source, you as a consumer start with a source file that was already compromised by going through *two* lossy conversions. (Yes two, because MP3 -> WAV is also a lossy conversion. If you take an .MP3 file, and convert it back to a .WAV file two times, you'll find that the resulting .WAV files are not exactly the same.)

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You can compare this to the effect when you re-save a .JPEG file over and over: https://fstoppers.com/edu...ion-435235 .


Exactly. The effect of transcoding an MP3/AAC file multiple times is highly dependent on the bitrate, though. I did the test 10-20 years ago with MP3, re-encoding an MP3 5 times, 10 times, 50 times, 100 times, etc. The result was horrible with lower bitrates (e.g. 128 kbps), but it was surprisingly quite good with 320 kbps, IIRC. Which means that two consecutive re-encodings at a high bitrate should be completely transparent to human ears. AAC should be even better, I guess.

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Reply #29 posted 05/27/20 12:57pm

djThunderfunk

avatar

databank said:

VaultCurator said:


It's not just Groovy Potential. I've just checked. 4 tracks on Hit N Run II are lossy compressed...

2.Y.2.D
Groovy Potential
When She Comes
Screwdriver

This is really fucked up falloff

Then again, no one noticed so this is again proof that it really makes no difference for most listeners. But it's still ridiculously unprofessional from P's (or, most likely, his staff) part. Of course, this shouldn't have happened.


It's been awhile, but I'm pretty sure some of us complained about lossy tracks on official CDs not long after the releases.

Censorship is ALWAYS wrong, no matter who is doing it or how noble their motivation.
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Forums > Prince: Music and More > ‘U Make My Sunshine / When Will We B Paid’ Retail CD – Lossy sound quality! WTF?