LD audio vs. DVD audio

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by JJR512, Sep 9, 2002.

  1. JJR512

    JJR512 Supporting Actor

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    On my own message board (general chat, mostly), I've made the bold statement that laserdiscs sound better than DVDs. This is the general impression I've gotten from various comments I've seen around here. But someone asked me to explain that statement and I find I'm at a loss. I know it has something to do with PCM... Can someone give me a relatively simple-to-understand reason to state as to why LDs sound better than DVDs?
     
  2. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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    Well frankly, it depends on the LD or the DVD

    PCM audio is basically CD audio. 1.5Mb(150 KiloBytes)/sec 2 channel stereo. Dolby Digital 2.0 is typically encoded at 192 Kilobits/sec. So while PCM is uncompressed, DD 2.0 takes up a lot less space. Now it's possible the DD 2.0 is taken from a far better source, so it could sound better, but if you do an A/B comparison from the sam master tape, PCM will always sound better. But PCM is a huge space hog, so it is virtually never used in the US. My only discs with PCM are Japanese concert discs
     
  3. greg_t

    greg_t Screenwriter

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    If you do a search, there have been many threads on this very topic. Jeff did a great job of summing it up on his post above. This topic has really been beat to death lately.
     
  4. Eric Baugh

    Eric Baugh Auditioning

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    Jeff,

    What's a factor of 10 among friends, eh?

    Eric
     
  5. JeremySt

    JeremySt Screenwriter

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  6. Brian Kidd

    Brian Kidd Screenwriter
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    Also, you must take into account the quality of your amp and speakers. Most people won't be able to tell the difference between PCM/DD/DTS if they have a "Home Theater in a Box" like I have. The main advantage to PCM tracks is that if you do eventually end up with a nicer system, then you have better source to listen to. PCM has the potential to sound great, but it all depends on the source material.
     
  7. Mark Zimmer

    Mark Zimmer Producer

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    Classical music DVDs (particularly opera) sometimes offer PCM tracks. I just ordered the Ring of the Nibelung set from Pioneer and was pleasantly surprised to find that it not only carries a 5.1 but a PCM track. [​IMG] And yes, generally the PCM sounds better.
     
  8. Ali B

    Ali B Second Unit

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    1.5 mb/sec = 1536 kbit/sec
     
  9. Michael St. Clair

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    I've heard a few DD2.0 tracks at 384k and 448k. I'm starting to think it may be an acceptable substitute for PCM.
    The typical DD2.0 at 192k or 224k is not acceptable.
     
  10. Kevin M

    Kevin M Producer

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    Ugh, not this again...I'm sorry if I'm being a bit rude but I have seen just about as many threads on this topic as I have on the whole Blade Runner"..is Deckard a Replicant?"
    topic.
    I'm certainly not telling you what to do but try a search next time & your questions might get a quicker answer.
    ...then again, looking at the difference of opinion in this thread...maybe not! [​IMG]
     
  11. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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    Mark, I actually find the the extra ambience that the 5.1 provides more than makes up for it. At least for me
     
  12. Benson R

    Benson R Supporting Actor

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    I'm just getting into laserdisc so my laserdisc player is quite lackluster compared to many hear. However I wonder if some of the sonic improvements people claim to here have more to do with the care that went into the production of these pcm tracks. I think most of the dolby 2.0 tracks people compare with pcm were intended to be listened to by people who have no surround sound equipment. I wonder if dolby 2.0 is capable of more than we hear in most tracks. This is the engineer in me speaking but all this talk of compression affecting quality makes me feel that for many here some of this is imagined. I know some people on the forum have unworldly equipment and they probably can hear a difference but the rest of us actually can't in many cases. Just my two cents.
     
  13. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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    Bensom, you're more right than you know [​IMG] Most of what people think they hear IS imagined placebo effect.
     
  14. Mattias_ka

    Mattias_ka Supporting Actor

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  15. Benson R

    Benson R Supporting Actor

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    I don't want to hijack this thread and turn it into a dts vs dolby thread as I usually prefer the dts track myself. My feeling that if the increased number of bits leads to better sound we all should be clamoring for a new dolby digital with an increased bit rate rather than a half bit rate dts as dolby's algorithm is more efficient. Until someone shows me a technical paper that shows that frequency cutoff for dolby is inherintly lower I will continue to believe this. Nothing against dts, which I will continue to listen to, just I feel the benefit is not going to be heard by those who have less than a thousand invested in sound equipment like me.
     
  16. Mattias_ka

    Mattias_ka Supporting Actor

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    Benson R, Well the only thing I want to say is that I like PCM audio better than DD. Ar du svensk?
    -Mattias-
     
  17. JJR512

    JJR512 Supporting Actor

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    DTS is not better than Dolby because it has a higher bitrate. If it's better than Dolby, it's due to a superior algorithm. (I've read that around here somewhere once before. [​IMG])
     
  18. Benson R

    Benson R Supporting Actor

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    I don't doubt that pcm probably is overall better than dd 2.0. My point is that a lot of people here agree with audophile laserdisc owners because they listen to their discs with dd 2.0 and are underwhelmed. I feel that most of the mixes may not be taking full advantage of what dolby is capable of. I know most suck but their are a couple that do sound great. As far as DTS and Dolby go I always go with DTS when given the choice. But I think that may be because more care often goes into the preparation of a DTS mix. I was watching Any Given Sunday this evening and I did not miss DTS one bit. The dynamic range was great and the lfe was tight. I'm glad so many releases have dts as an option but I lose no sleep if a title I want doesn't have it.
     
  19. Mattias_ka

    Mattias_ka Supporting Actor

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    I don't doubt that pcm probably is overall better than dd 2.0.

    Is CD better than MP3??
     
  20. Mattias_ka

    Mattias_ka Supporting Actor

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    DTS is not better than Dolby because it has a higher bitrate.


    Okey, so that D-theater can have 664(?) kbps DD track is
    not better than a 384 kpbs DD track on DVD or??
     

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