SACD ? -- huh ? - diyAudio
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Old 5th January 2010, 03:55 PM   #1
jmar is offline jmar  United States
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Default SACD ? -- huh ?

Man, am I out of the loop.

My life is electronics and some things fly right by me.

Just heard of SACD (don't laugh) and have a few questions --

(1) Is it worth it?

(2) I do love classical music and from some initial reading, seems the majority of the CD's are classical?


Just saw a Yamaha DVD/SACD player under 100 bucks -- may grab one.

Any of the ripping software working on SACD? (I use Exact audio copy, EAC).
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Old 5th January 2010, 03:57 PM   #2
jmar is offline jmar  United States
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Another thing --

I'm not interested at all in surround sound for audio.

Is the SACD about that or a real improvement in stereo?
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Old 5th January 2010, 04:12 PM   #3
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I doubt if a $100 player will give you any sonmic advantgae over red Book CD.

The SACD format does (potentially) have a great increase in dynamics, frequency response and detail, but 99% of players are not good enough to really hear the difference.

But when you get one that does, it's as good as very good vinyl!

Regards, Allen
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Old 5th January 2010, 04:25 PM   #4
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Well -- there is this:

Boston Audio Society, Lincoln, MA 01773, USA
Claims both published and anecdotal are regularly made for audibly superior sound quality for two-channel audio encoded with longer word lengths and/or at higher sampling rates than the 16-bit/44.1-kHz CD standard. The authors report on a series of double-blind tests comparing the analog output of high-resolution players playing high-resolution recordings with the same signal passed through a 16-bit/44.1-kHz ?bottleneck.? The tests were conducted for over a year using different systems and a variety of subjects. The systems included expensive professional monitors and one high-end system with electrostatic loudspeakers and expensive components and cables. The subjects included professional recording engineers, students in a university recording program, and dedicated audiophiles. The test results show that the CD-quality A/D/A loop was undetectable at normal-to-loud listening levels, by any of the subjects, on any of the playback systems. The noise of the CD-quality loop was audible only at very elevated levels.


This is the Meyer-Moran test and, needless to say, it's very controversial.
I know of at least one recording company that has dropped the SACD format recently. I don't know if this is a trend or not.

Cheers.

ZAP
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Old 5th January 2010, 04:32 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Allen Wright View Post
I doubt if a $100 player will give you any sonmic advantgae over red Book CD.

The SACD format does (potentially) have a great increase in dynamics, frequency response and detail, but 99% of players are not good enough to really hear the difference.

But when you get one that does, it's as good as very good vinyl!

Regards, Allen
Allen,
Vinyl has bass slam, SACD not and certainly not your mods for the Sony!!!



Last edited by QSerraTico_Tico; 5th January 2010 at 04:36 PM.
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Old 5th January 2010, 04:40 PM   #6
jmar is offline jmar  United States
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Good to know -- sounds like I haven't been missing out.

I've been very happy with my WAV files and my Burr Brown USB DAC or standalone cd player.

Thanks.
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Old 5th January 2010, 04:43 PM   #7
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Apparently a lot of SACD's are also just CD quality. I.e. very expensive CD's on a SACD.
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Old 5th January 2010, 04:50 PM   #8
Pano is offline Pano  United States
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Actually I've found that the mastering on SACD is often better than CD. Being a premium product, more care is taken (it seems).

But as noted, getting the full advantages of SACD takes some money or some modification work. And you can't rip them, or I've never found a way to.
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Old 5th January 2010, 05:42 PM   #9
kevinkr is offline kevinkr  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by panomaniac View Post
Actually I've found that the mastering on SACD is often better than CD. Being a premium product, more care is taken (it seems).

But as noted, getting the full advantages of SACD takes some money or some modification work. And you can't rip them, or I've never found a way to.
I have a heavily modified Sony SCD-777ES SACD player, and good SACD recordings get about as close to analog sound as I have heard for a digital format. Even used these players are not particularly inexpensive. (Mine was a mint low hours unit I acquired from a close friend who owns several) I also have a much less expensive SCD-770 (Not sold in the USA) and frankly its SACD playback quality even with mods is not in the same league as a very good CD player - almost ended my dabbling with SACD before it began. So in short a cheap SACD player is not likely to give you any bang for the buck over a comparably priced CD player.

The first generation Sony SACD players (with the exception of the SCD-1 and SCD-777ES single players) can often be found for a reasonable sum of money and are worth modding - note that they are all 5 disk changers. These units all use the theoretically superior DSD DAC ics which almost nothing newer with the exception of some very premium and expensive hardware from DCS does. You'll need to read up on the issues and I recommend you read the high res forum on audio asylum for insight.

So far no one has broken the DRM on the SACD, and last time I checked the only computers that could play SACD disks (no copying capability) were some premium Sony desktops and laptops.

The number of titles on SACD is limited, but in the last year or so some avowedly anti-sacd labels have joined the fold - one such example is Reference Recordings. There is a fair amount of Jazz, Chamber, and Classical music on SACD. A lot of classic rock has also made it onto the format. The best place to get them is online at either acoustic sounds or elusive disc... CD Universe has some as well.
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Last edited by kevinkr; 5th January 2010 at 05:47 PM.
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Old 5th January 2010, 05:56 PM   #10
rdf is offline rdf  Canada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bas Horneman View Post
Apparently a lot of SACDs are also just CD quality. I.e. very expensive CD's on a SACD.
Apparently some SACD players measure little better than Redbook as well. The Meyer-Moran test uses one, an independent test found its effective resolution barely exceeded 17 bit.
To experience high rez quality for free investigate some live performance recordings on the Internet Archive. Search for 24/96 versions. I've found it's worth checking them with a software spectrum analyzer for >20kHz content, many files saved in 96/24 format were obviously Redbook brick-walled.
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