NPR Brilliant Audio Format Test

anon(10388027)

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NPR folks wondered...

So, should you pay double for a lossless 'HiFi' Tidal digital music service option? Take the test!

Tip #1 : Easier to tell at higher volumes.
Tip #2 : Take your time. Replay the 3 options.

The smart folks at NPR created an audio test using three audio clips from six songs recorded in lossless Flac 1411 kbps, MP3 128 kbps, and MP3 320 kbps on six songs.

I was shocked at how difficult it was to tell the three formats apart. My conclusion is compressed 320 kbps is brilliant, and doesn't get enough respect.

https://www.npr.org/sections/therecord/2015/06/02/411473508/how-well-can...
 

Mooncatt

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Feb 23, 2011
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Interesting, I'll have to listen later in my car. Couple of subs, EQ set based on an analyzer, and time aligned speakers. The best thing I have for sound, plus it'll be a wired connection from my LG V20, which is known for superb audio quality.

All of my personal tracks are mp3's at 320kbps and I couldn't really tell a difference between that and the CD's I copied them from. I could tell a difference between CD's and 128kbps mp3's, with clipped highs and lows.
 

anon(10388027)

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Yes, 128 kbps vs lossless CDs with a premium vehicle stereo should make your try easy.

I was surprised my corded Bowers & Wilkins headphones struggled to make correct picks, but they aren't an overly loud headphone either.
 
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Mooncatt

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Yes, 128 kbps vs lossless CDs with a premium vehicle stereo should make your try easy.

I got 50/50 on it. Lol. I guess it would've helped if I actually knew more than one song (Tom's Diner, but even then I've never heard the a capella version) and how it was supposed to sound. I guess on a couple of them I thought the 128kbps versions sounded better.
 

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