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VHS vs CD quality
VHS vs CD quality
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Old 30th November 2004, 03:11 PM   #11
analog_sa is offline analog_sa  Europe
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Do you buy music on tape, or how do you get it onto tape in the first place?
Sorry to mislead you Jennice. This was just an opinion regarding analogue tape - i only listen to vinyl.

Years ago a friend of mine used to take a Sony proffessional cassette recorder to concerts and make his own binaural recordings with a silly looking 'head' with mike ears. These recordings were absolutely amazing on his electrostatic headphones and very, very good on his (and mine) diy electrostatic speakers. Way better than cd could possibly sound and in many important ways better than my vinyl rig at the time.
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Old 30th November 2004, 04:01 PM   #12
Jennice is offline Jennice  Denmark
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I think I know what kind of head you mean. The ones manufactured by Brel and Kjr are called HATS (Head And Torso Simulator).

I'm engineer, too, and thus I can't ignore your tag-line...
>>>The problem with professional engineers is they are born without ears. Not their fault. That makes the evaluation by listening pretty hard.

Very well said by Elso<<<

A very broad claim, which he should either keep for himself, or be more specific about. If professional engineers always used their ears in stead of science, there would be no such thing as an objective measurement for reference. This would give room for even more ultra high-end hoax stuff (such as more than $100 wood knobs, which should give a tremendous improvement in sound quality if used as replacement for the original volume knob. (I saw this add from a real shop!)
The knob's special coating should give improved mechanical resonance patterns, which improved the sound! )

Also, if it wasn't for ear-less engineers, there would be no such thing as dynamic-range measurements, which you guys happily refer to!

I get paid to break stuff. My g/f gets paid to play with children. Life is good.
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Old 30th November 2004, 05:03 PM   #13
macboy is offline macboy  Canada
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Also, if it wasn't for ear-less engineers, there would be no such thing as dynamic-range measurements, which you guys happily refer to!
Actually, the only one to mention dynamic range in this thread was me, and I am an Engineer (oh the horror!).
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Old 6th April 2013, 04:58 PM   #14
Dude111 is offline Dude111
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Originally Posted by Frank Berry
VHS HI Fi is completely analog ... frequency modulation.
Yes Frank... I love my VCR!!!

I am an avid VHS collector,i have many movies i have loved over the years..... It is getting hard finding VHS movies these days that have NOT BEEN DIGITALLY COMPROMISED!

Many movies are being REDONE and "Digitally Mastered" on VHS and look/sound like crap!! -- Seems all this GOOD analog media is being destroyed and its sad......

I dont understand how people can say to me "VHS LOOKS LIKE CRAP COMPARED TO BLU-RAY" -- Im sorry but VHS looks quite super to me!!!!!!! (Much better than anything digital) -- An Analog picture and sound CANNOT BE BEAT!! -- I am glad to have the mind and sense to realise what really IS better!

I goto thrift stores alot and get movies I like,records,etc......... Finally getting SP/COMPLETLY Analog copies of movies i have loved for years IS QUITE A TREAT!!!!! (Trouble is most of them have been either "Digitally Mastered" or Digitally Processed somehow and the quality is not as good.... I ordered a copy of THE GOONIES from amazon but it was "Digitally Processed" and looked like garbage!!!! -- I got rid of it.... I dont wanna view such a fine movie like that IN THAT CONDITION!! (If i cant get it totally digital free,I DONT WANT IT)
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Old 7th April 2013, 10:43 PM   #15
Nanook is offline Nanook  Canada
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I encouraged my brother-in-law to just this. Even off air the recordings were very good. Yes analog tape has it's fans and of all the tape types and players a HiFi VHS or similar Betamax (which is superior to VHS any day of the week) with good quality tape can be very satisfying.

If reel to reel can have fans (and command high prices for new or rebuilt machines), why can't these tape formats. A Dolby C encoded well recorded tape played back on a good machine gets the sounds just about right, but not like a reel to reel or Betamax/VHS hiFi machine.
stew -"A sane man in an insane world appears insane."
Let's help Ruth and Dave
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Old 8th April 2013, 02:15 AM   #16
Pano is offline Pano  United States
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VHS vs CD quality
We appear to be going back in time......

Dude111, forget VHS, Laser Disc is where it's at. Want some? And a good Sony player?
Analog all the way. No bandwidth compromises like VHS.
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Old 8th April 2013, 02:52 AM   #17
Don Hills is offline Don Hills  New Zealand
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VHS Hi-Fi audio is heavily companded (2:1 dbx type) and pre-emphasised. It requires precise matching of the tracking of the compressor and expander, which is rare when the tape is played back on a machine other than the one it was recorded on. And the reason it requires this processing is because the underlying mechanism (tape transport, head switching) makes the basic audio transport unstable and noisy. For example, if your tape tracking is off or the FM signal off the tape is low, you'll hear a "purring" noise in the background. This is the head switching...

(Tape transport speed variations are what cause "wiggling" in vertical lines in the picture. Head switching isn't seen in normal playback because it occurs in the blanking period between video fields.)

As for Laser Disc, only the early discs had FM audio. It wasn't that great because of the lack of error correction. The later ones had CD-spec PCM audio.
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Old 29th December 2014, 08:17 AM   #18
freax is offline freax
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Originally Posted by Don Hills View Post
As for Laser Disc, only the early discs had FM audio. It wasn't that great because of the lack of error correction. The later ones had CD-spec PCM audio.
The digital audio tracks are good yes. The analog tracks are bad sounding, they sound like a tape player despite being pressed onto a laserdisc.

I suspect that this is because of the laserdisc players opamps or analog stages though not because of the tracks themselves. It would be interesting to listen to a modded laserdisc player where the analog stages have far greater care taken of them. The disc does wow and flutter though just like a cassette, it can be heard but only just on analog laserdisc tracks.

Laserdisc is another dead end I'm afraid and this is coming from someone who has owned them for 10 years, I finally got rid of them a year or two ago, the discs are so large and clumsy that you would need to be a homeowner inorder to justify their care and expense far into the future.

I'm afraid that CD is the only proper method of transport of audio that we have which can be easily moved around and I mean this in physical terms. Ever had to put a huge box of laserdiscs into the back of your car? I have... Its not good, and that was only 30 or so movies!

They are HEAVY! and most of all they are EXPENSIVE!

I bought into them and spent about $1300, I ended up having to sell them including the player for $200. A massive financial loss.

Just stick to the DACs guys, until one of us invents a new analog standard which can be pressed onto a compact disc I'm afraid analog will remain dormant.

And if you want super high quality audio then get into 192khz 24bit. This is coming from a guy who used to own and grew up playing on Sony/Sanyo Betamax/Betacord tape players, reel to reels, vinyl records, and still listens to cassette tape even today.

The only worthwhile analog media today that is still around and going kinda-strong is Cassette tape. Hi-Bias ones are good, worth it? Still Questionable for me. Then theres vinyl.

I am hoping to find the DAC which will end the question once and for all, and I think I did, but I need to be apsolutley sure before I give up on analog! A TDA1541 dac, found on my personal website.

I beg of you. Don't go down the path of Analog like I did, boxes and boxes of Laserdiscs (and a history of Betamax/VHS tapes out the wazoo) until you build your own TDA1541 (NON-A is even great) DAC. It is a massive massive waste of money.

If you cannot tell the difference between Analog sources and a good DAC then your speakers are probably the weakest link, rubbish speakers can make anything sound great and confuse the hell out of you.

And this is coming from someone who has had a huge vested interest in Analog who is honestly saying, don't go there dude. Sure its romantic, sure its convenient and has no copyright restrictions. But Analog is really a sinking ship right now and it provides no benefits beyond what a good DAC and a good digital transport will do for you.

And no, if you're listening to digital music through your onboard soundcard then your opinions don't count. Get a proper CD/DVD player, listen to the digital output of that on a good DAC = heaven.

It really is a fools errand to go out and buy into analog formats, with vinyl then that can be an exception, vinyl has a very strong cult following, but question how you're going to get up every 15 minutes to flip that disk in the modern age where time is of an essence. Thats why I'm getting out of it, its just too clumsy and inconvenient and my knee and back just cannot stand a constant getting up and down all of the time. Vinyl does sound great especially with an Ortofon Super OM10 but meh! Its just damn too clusmy to operate.

If you get into vinyl then get a few select albums that you just cannot live without on analog.

I say again theres just no point to buying into analog formats again, not when DACs and CD sources sound this good. I'm getting out of it and probably not turning back.

When you get to the point that you're using a Pioneer DV-344 DVD/CD player listening through a TDA1541 DAC and then through K73-16 coupling capacitors and through a KT88 SE Amplifier in Triode mode and through a pair of Frugelhorn 126En's then and only then can you tell me that Analog sounds better than digital. Because I honestly am blown away by the systems performance. I'm fooled in Triode mode. Honestly cannot tell much difference between a real life performance and a reproduction. Its still missing a few frequencies compared to a real life performance but its mostly all there. And it sounds just as good as analog did, and that performance is repeatable again and again without tape wear or vinyl wear.

Another saved soul. I'll keep buying CD's and storing them in my little cake box and storing the cases for the CD's in a drawer somewhere, very convenient now!

As for analog video though, well thats an entirely different story, I prefer good old analog film myself. nothing beats 35-70mm film
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Last edited by freax; 29th December 2014 at 08:46 AM.
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Old 4th January 2015, 11:10 AM   #19
lexx21 is offline lexx21  United States
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VHS vs CD quality
Way back when, around 1985, I did an A/B test between one of the first philips top loading cd players and one of the early mitsubishi hi-fi vhs machines. I couldn't tell the difference between the two on a proton d540 and advent speakers. That was what I could afford at the time so it was far from "audiophile" quality, but it did go to show that audio recorded onto vhs tape in hifi mode sounded as good as cd players of the time.

Now I listen only to vinyl as I cannot stand the sound of cd, especially new discs. I have been itching to get a good reel to reel deck, but this thread is sort of piquing my interest in recording to video tape. There was a technics device that used vhs tape and recorded audio only. I'm not sure if it was hifi format or just 2 channel stereo (different sections of the tape), but I saw that in a stereo store (named... and I kid you not... high fidelity $$$) in 1983. Rare as hens teeth to be sure and if it breaks I am pretty sure you would be screwed.
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Old 4th January 2015, 11:46 AM   #20
scopeboy is offline scopeboy  Scotland
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The Technics device was 14-bit digital PCM. An ancestor of the DAT machine if you like. There were a few recorders like this around in the early 80s, but the Sony PCM-F1 blew all of them out of the water, and then DAT made it obsolete.

Hi-fi VHS is an analog system using subcarriers similar to stereo FM radio, and with similar performance.
"Sadly, audio is like that. It is about the only branch of electronic engineering where lack of knowledge is regarded as a more advanced form of wisdom." http://scopeboy.com/amps

Last edited by scopeboy; 4th January 2015 at 11:49 AM.
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