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what is the difference between DTS and 5.1?


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20 replies to this topic

#1 of 21 Derek B

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Posted June 24 2003 - 12:26 PM

I do not notice any difference in sound when using DTS or 5.1 modes. Can you please explain the difference.
Thanks,
Derek
Derek

#2 of 21 Ronn.W

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Posted June 24 2003 - 12:57 PM

I'm assuming you mean the difference between DTS 5.1 and Dolby Digital 5.1. Both DTS and Dolby are 5.1 surround formats, but they are different decoding/encoding technologies. Dolby offers higher data compression of the audio on all 6 channels (5+1) than DTS does for the most part. Although there are many DTS encoded discs coming out now that have been encoded at a lower rate, the 'regular' DTS tracks found on SE's and Superbit type titles are often thought to be fuller/richer sounding and add more detail. Whether you hear the difference or not depends on your ears and equipment; because of this the 'Which is better DTS or DD' debate is an endless one.

Note: This is meant to be a very basic post.

#3 of 21 JamesHl

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Posted June 24 2003 - 12:58 PM

There's a load of stuff in the FAQ about this. Also, this could have been combined with your other post.

But really, check out the FAQ, it will answer many of your more basic questions (and some advanced ones) such as this.

#4 of 21 Ernest Yee

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Posted June 24 2003 - 03:10 PM

I never thought it was really all the conflictive - not like speaker cables...

DD5.1 = higher compression which generally = less quality
DTS = takes up more space to increase sound quality.

It's the same principle as the superbit DVDs - the superbits get rid of all the extra junk on the dvds to increase the picture resolution.

#5 of 21 Jack Briggs

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Posted June 24 2003 - 04:58 PM

Derek, make sure the DTS-decoding is enabled in whatever you amplify your system with (check your DVD player set-up menu as well as your receiver's or pre/pro's). This thread will remain active; others will be closed.

#6 of 21 Michael Reuben

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Posted June 25 2003 - 01:31 AM

Quote:
DD5.1 = higher compression which generally = less quality
DTS = takes up more space to increase sound quality.
People say this all the time, but it's a meaningless statement, because the compression schemes used by DD and DTS are completely different.

Quote:
It's the same principle as the superbit DVDs - the superbits get rid of all the extra junk on the dvds to increase the picture resolution.

No, it's not the "same principle" at all. The MPEG2 compression scheme used on so-called "superbit" DVDs is the same one used on all DVDs. So when you're comparing the image on a superbit vs. a regular version, you're comparing apples to apples. When you compare DD to DTS on the basis of compression, it's apples and oranges.

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#7 of 21 Bryan X

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Posted June 25 2003 - 04:07 AM

Quote:
I never thought it was really all the conflictive - not like speaker cables...

DD5.1 = higher compression which generally = less quality
DTS = takes up more space to increase sound quality.


It's not as simple as that. Part of the reason there's such debate is because regardless of which one is truly better, in real world situations most people just can't tell the difference. Most home theaters are set up in rooms where the acoustics are far from ideal and outside noises intrude, making any difference negligible at best. Also, one person won't hear sounds exactly the same as another person would.

BOTH formats are great. There are great DD5.1 encoded DVDs and there are some not so great... the same with DTS -- some great some not.

The bottom line is both formats CAN deliver amazing sound.

#8 of 21 ChrisWiggles

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Posted June 25 2003 - 09:21 AM

Let's not get into DD vs DTS. Let's discuss something totally noncontroversial. How about abortion?

#9 of 21 BrentPollard

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Posted June 25 2003 - 10:03 AM

Sometimes I can tell the diff sometimes not but it is certainly to our advantage to have both,, cough ..Mac cough..PCPosted Image

#10 of 21 Ernest Yee

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Posted June 25 2003 - 06:04 PM

Alright - let me add a qualifier to my previous statement.

In theory, b/c of less compression it should be better. BUT I do agree w/ Bryan X in that there are some really great encoded DD5.1s and there are also some really crappy DTS encodes out. But once again, they both are capable of producing great sound.

#11 of 21 Michael Reuben

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Posted June 26 2003 - 01:59 AM

Quote:
In theory, b/c of less compression it should be better.

Not even in theory. You could achieve less compression than either DD or DTS by simply removing every other bit in the uncompressed bitstream, yielding an extremely low compression ratio of 2:1. But it probably wouldn't sound very good.

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#12 of 21 BrentPollard

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Posted June 26 2003 - 06:49 AM

As far as which is better, there must be something to the DTS is better argument because almost every review you read, the DTS track is preferred.Posted Image

#13 of 21 Bryan X

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Posted June 26 2003 - 07:29 AM

Quote:
As far as which is better, there must be something to the DTS is better argument because almost every review you read, the DTS track is preferred.

Yes, it does seem in most instances that DTS is preferred. Why is this? Do the reviewers have better HT equipment allowing them to hear subtle differences? Is there a bias towards DTS influencing them? Is the difference resulting in the DTS preference even significant?

I still believe that the average person with a home theater would not be able to identify the DTS track versus the DD track in a blind test better than random chance.

I think both formats if mastered properly are just too good for any differences to be easily perceptible in real world situations.

#14 of 21 Michael Reuben

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Posted June 26 2003 - 07:45 AM

Quote:
Why is this?

I've often wondered how many reviewers do the proper tests and make the proper adjustments to equalize volume levels. Most, though not all, DTS tracks will play back 4db louder than their DD counterparts; this is not because of any "cooking" in the mix, but because of a little-understood feature of DD known as "dialog normalization" (or "dialnorm"). Louder is almost always perceived as better, and a 4db boost could account for a lot of reviewer preferences.

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#15 of 21 Bryan X

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Posted June 26 2003 - 09:31 AM

Quote:
Most, though not all, DTS tracks will play back 4db louder than their DD counterparts


I forgot about that Michael. I've noticed that on quite a few of the discs I have which contain both a DD and DTS track.

#16 of 21 BrentPollard

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Posted June 26 2003 - 10:34 AM

In a blind test I doubt I could tell the diff with any amount of accuracy but one disc that did seem to have quite noticeable difference between the DD and DTS was the 3 disc set of Brotherhood of the Wolf. The outdoor scenes in particular seemed much more realistic or open than the DD version. like you were actually outside. FOTR EE has a more of a scene by scene difference.

#17 of 21 Jeff Kleist

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Posted June 30 2003 - 07:37 AM

Michael, when I compare the 2 I ALWAYS equalize Posted Image

#18 of 21 David Giesbrecht

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Posted July 07 2003 - 08:52 AM

I have found that most of the time DTS does sound louder but then I also relized that its only action sequences and effects that appear to be louder. I can't find the article that I read but it stated that DD had a Dynamic range of 100 db and DTS had a dynamic range of 108 db and I beleive it. I have never been dissapointed with any DTS soundtrack. so far.

#19 of 21 Myo K

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Posted July 10 2003 - 05:37 PM

when i first got into audio, i was able to notice a big difference in sound between dts and dd 5.1 playing on a "htib" system.

its not difficult at all to discern the two tracks, i remember testing it out on atlantis and played both tracks right after each other, and the clarity in the dts was a lot more noticeable. i noticed that the lfe channel was pumped up a few decibels louder then the dd track, but i dont know how true the argument "louder is perceived as better" is.

since then i have gotten a decent entry system, all calibrated properly, with far better speakers then i had previous, and i must say, that dts has a definate clarity increase in sound over dolby digital tracks on thes ame movie.

ive often raise the volume on the dd track to meet the deible levels of the dts track and dts tracks still make the dd track sound fuzzy and muffled.

though i am not takin ginto consideration dd ex tracks, i am only comparing dts and dd.

#20 of 21 scott>sau

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Posted July 11 2003 - 02:07 AM

http://timefordvd.co...oundSound.shtml


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