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Topic: Quality of sound - what am I doing/thinking wrong?

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  1. #1

    Quality of sound - what am I doing/thinking wrong?

    Example: take that second part of Schubert's 5th symphony I recently posted in the Listening Room. Using headphones for the initial rendering, it sounded fairly good. Next step: getting it thru my Behringer Truth B2030A, I had to amend some "volumes" and after that it sounded satisfying. And some of you agreed.

    Second stage:
    I collected several pieces and made a CD - all wave files, thus no MP3 versions - and played it thru my Hi-Fi equipment in my living room.
    Be sure of it, this whole system has a quality label on it, recently confirmed by reviews. The sole weakpoint is the CD player, my original Sony system died and since this afternoon I've got for free a 1993 Philips Cd player with twin DAC system 16 bits TDA 1543 -as an intermediate replacement.

    Third stage:
    It sounded terrible. Violins to high, not enough lower freq's, stereo image 3D lousy (I couldn't place the instruments in space), mid's absent (almost), etc. Can anybody tell me why? Is there some calibration stuff around for my DAW (I say DAW, meaning my computer system with Sonar, Monitors, Mixer, etc.).

    Please help? I really want to make a CD sounding almost as the real thing, at least as close as can be. Or are those wishes simply wishful thinking?

    Raymond

  2. #2

    Re: Quality of sound - what am I doing/thinking wrong?

    Hi, Raymond

    Do commercially produced CDs sound good to you on your system? If so - then your assumption has to be right, that something is going wrong when you burn your CDs from your .wav files.

    I've never had any issues like this. My playback equipment is humble, but when I play .wav files directly from the computer or CD copies of the files - I can't tell any difference.

    When it comes to burning CDs, I've done nothing but use default settings. Hopefully someone with more sophistication in the ins and outs of CD burners may have something helpful for you.

    Sorry you're having problems!

    Randy B.

  3. #3

    Re: Quality of sound - what am I doing/thinking wrong?

    Raymond
    As a reference, play a CD you are very familiar with through your computer via headphones and the Behringer Truth monitors.

    This will give you an idea of how your WAV file mix should sound through the same outputs.

    IF the same CD sounds good through your Hi-Fi, then (logic prevailing) your WAV file mixed accordingly, should sound as good as the commercial CD.

    I use a variety of commercial CD's that I know well as reference points from a variety of musical genre.

    Make sense?

  4. #4

    Re: Quality of sound - what am I doing/thinking wrong?

    Hope you see these replies soon, Raymond - Paul and I are pointing out the same thing, Paul did a better job of explaining exactly what I implied earlier - Get out good reference CDs of classical music and see what they sound like on your system.

    Otherwise, as I said, I'm at a loss why the transition from .wav to .ca (CD) should be degrading the sound so much.

    Randy B.

  5. #5

    Re: Quality of sound - what am I doing/thinking wrong?

    What program are you using to burn your WAV file to CD Raymond?

    Check there aren't any silly options like auto levelling or some silly EQ hidden anywhere in the program.

    Also, (this isn't a major thing though) normal CDR's have a lower audio bandwidth than Audio CDR's.

    I got fed up burning CD's of every mix only to fnd that it wasn't what I wanted, so I bought myself an iPod shuffle (£49 - about $100). Now I can put the track straight onto the shuffle and play it back through my Hi-Fi via a mini jack to 2 x phono lead.

    The iPod shuffle supports: (from APPLE WEBSITE)

    "AAC (8 to 320 Kbps), Protected AAC (from iTunes Store), MP3 (8 to 320 Kbps), MP3 VBR, Audible (formats 2, 3, and 4), WAV, and AIFF"



    It's going to save me a fortune in CDR's lol

  6. #6

    Re: Quality of sound - what am I doing/thinking wrong?

    Compelled by your replies I checked and double checked my system as well as the hifi setup in the living room.

    Living room: I must have made a mistake during the last internal "yearly cleanup" and switched the phase/polarity of the main speakers (plus and minus switched for R- and L-speakers). I didn't notice this before, because this cleaning exercise was fairly recent and since then I didn't play any concert until this message/thread.

    the "DAW" environment: for burning a CD I used to use NERO, but after the re-installation of XP (new computer system) I relied upon the burning features from/in Adobe Audition 2.0. This morning I installed Plex(tor)Tools Professional and did a test (after having rewired the HiFi system!!). A significant improvement !!!!!!!!! WOW. I did two tests, the CD I did some days ago and the one I did this morning with PlexTools. Plextools was better.

    In this new system I don't have a CD burner, but the Plextor DVDR PX-760A, which is a DVD burner and handles CD's also.

    Question: how is this possible? I always burn a the lowest speed (4x). I really thought that the burning process was universal, whichever program you use, the result has to be the same. Obviously this is not the case. Why?

    Another strange thing: listening to the Symphonic Poem - part 1 I discovered that the depths are just inside out. Don't know if this is clear to you. Suppose you have a 3-D picture and depending on the angle you look at it the inside is higher and the next time it is lower (another angle). Now I found those violins, all put in front by using minimum reverb sends, way back at the stage. Clear? As if everything was reversed (flutes too much in front, etc.) Any clue?

    Raymond
    [PS I may not respond at your messages immediatly, because my son and family stay here for the weekend - with my grandson ofcourse]

  7. #7

    Re: Quality of sound - what am I doing/thinking wrong?

    Hi Raymond

    I'm pleased you found the reverse phase problem ... that will certainly mess up your sound.

    As far as CD burning is concerned, unfortunately, not all software is as meticulously written as it should be.

    It would also be a good idea to check how the sound compares on a low end (cheap) CD player ... in fact, check on as many audio playback types as you can get your hands on ... people play msic on the strangest equipment lol.

    Please make sure you check your mix as MP3 (16 bit 44.1 KHz) This bit rate and frequency is the Red Book standard for CD Audio and has generally been accepted as the standard for MP3 compression as well (not the best for dynamic music as the compression is too heavy IMO)

  8. #8

    Re: Quality of sound - what am I doing/thinking wrong?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Stutt
    Please make sure you check your mix as MP3 (16 bit 44.1 KHz) This bit rate and frequency is the Red Book standard for CD Audio and has generally been accepted as the standard for MP3 compression as well (not the best for dynamic music as the compression is too heavy IMO)
    This is beyond my comprehension.... why MP3? The source is .wav and it is converted to .cda while burning.

    Another thing is, I also switched to Polarities apart from the Phase, see above. Phasing problems arise when you connect the leads plus and minus different on both speakers. Polarity is that the plus on both (and minus on both) aren't the plus and minus outputs from the amplifier. Now I have it all right. [stupid me, I knew this before, but somehow forgot to check!!!!!!]

    My brain must be out of phase lately, normally I don't make mistakes like this...... age? season? any remedy around?

    Raymond

  9. #9

    Re: Quality of sound - what am I doing/thinking wrong?

    Hi Raymond

    I suggest MP3 manly for internet application. Because most web sites wil only allow you to upload in MP3 format, it is always a good idea to check how this sounds.

  10. #10

    Re: Quality of sound - what am I doing/thinking wrong?

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymond62
    ...
    My brain must be out of phase lately, normally I don't make mistakes like this...... age? season? any remedy around?

    Raymond
    , drugs and rock & roll Raymond

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