My big questions about DTS and DVD-A

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Wayde_R, Oct 10, 2003.

  1. Wayde_R

    Wayde_R Stunt Coordinator

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    DVD-A benefit is sound that is 24 bit by 96hz, or 24/96 as I understand it. It is too high a resolution of audio (apparently) to go over regular old digital output cables therefore requires analogue separates for every channel.

    I've been reading about DTS audio DVDs. The claim is 24/96 sound. But this time it can ride the digital cables. My question is what's the difference? Is DVD-A's somehow higher res? Is DTS lying about their resolution? Could it have to do with the security of DVD-A signals, I understand "part" of the reason for DVD-A requiring analogue outputs is for security of record companies properties.

    Also, is DTS audio "good", almost as good, or just as good as DVD-A from an audiophile standpoint? Does the reason it's better have to do with things beyond the specs (24/96)? When I watch a movie in DTS can it be considered higher res audio than Dolby Digital? Is Dolby Digital 16/44 like a regular CD?

    I know it's a lot of questions, sorry. Just wondering about this stuff. I know the material available on DVD-A is greater now but if it's all the same why should I go looking for a DVD-A dvd player when I already have DTS? I think the DTS recording I have now sounds awesome, I hope they do more. I'm sold on DTS audio.
     
  2. jeff peterson

    jeff peterson Supporting Actor

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    I didn't think that DVD-A signals weren't passed on the digital cable for technical reasons but so it couldn't be copied (pirated) in the digital domain. The music moguls forced the equipment manufacturers to just pass the analog signal.
     
  3. FeisalK

    FeisalK Screenwriter

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    IMHO the main difference between DVD-A and DTS is compression - DVD-A uses lossless compression (MLP) and DTS is a lossy compression algorithm. Having said that, neither my ears nor my system at the moment is of any capable resolution to detect the difference between DVD-A and DTS 96/24.

    You might wanna check out this article on audioholics.

    As jeff said, there's no technical reason why DVD-A signals can't pass on the digital cables. In fact some players are now equipped with a presumably copy protected IEEE1394 (i.e. firewire, or iLink) interface which allow DVD-A signals to pass to (a similarly equipped) receiver.
     
  4. Tim Hoover

    Tim Hoover Screenwriter

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    Jeff and Feisal are correct. The SOLE reason for hi-rez audio being passed via analog connections is for copy-protection. The studios don't want consumers to rip a digital track and presumably be able to copy a master-quality recording.

    Regarding sound quality, not all DVD-A releases are 24/96. The increase in sound quality is due to the lossless compression scheme, which is said (and I believe it!) to deliver higher quality than either DD or DTS.
     
  5. Darryl

    Darryl Stunt Coordinator

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    Here's something I posted on another site.

     
  6. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Lead Actor

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  7. Robert Franklin

    Robert Franklin Stunt Coordinator

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    Dolby tracks on dvds are 48k/12 bit. This is less than the spec for cd audio. Theoretically, this sounds less detailed as audio cds. Keep in mind that audio cds are not compressed. With the exception of the musical instruments during the recording process. This is done to make sure all instruments in a song are balanced. This is the ONLY time compression is used in cd audio recording. There may be one other exception to this rule, and that would be if the recording is made totally in the digital domain. Again, Dolby is less than the theoretical and audible range of audio cds. Most any other compression scheme that is more than this, would be a higher quality sound whether it be DTS, or MLP. Both MLP and DTS have lossless compression schemes. However, the lossless DTS scheme has not been implemented for the release of DTS soundtracks for DVD. It would be preferable to to use one or both of these capabilities with the future of Blu-Ray. IMHO, I would rather use either DTS, or DSD. These two schemes offer a level of detail that I haven't been able to hear with MLP or Dolby. All systems are good, but if we are to attain a algorithm that maintains the soundstage and integrity of the sound, based on calculations that I have read, and sound tests that my friend and I have conducted, the two options would be DSD, or DTS at 8 Mbs 20 or 24 bits. Dolby runs at 680 kbs/12 bit. DSD 2.822 Mbs. MLP at 192 kbs/24 bits word length.

    One last thing. Dolby's current codec used for DVDs are less in audio quality than the audio cd. Anything, with more resolution than that codec scheme would theoretically sound "better" than Dolby. Knowing this; how can people say that Dolby is just as good as DTS, or even better? How can someone say DTS doesn't sound as good as Dolby based on the numbers above?

    I know that this is not a Dolby/DTS debate, but I wanted to make sure that all of the facts are conveyed in this thread.

    Back to the original reason I responded to this thread is the mere fact that Sony and Philips stated that no other information other than 44.1 kbs at 16 bit word length could pass through its optical connection. As we all know this is no longer the case.

    I didn't mean to rant about DD/DTS, but what was stated had to be stated.
     
  8. PhilBoy

    PhilBoy Second Unit

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    My own personal observation (right or wrong)...

    I own Queen-Greatest Video Hits DVD-V which includes a DTS track that I play with the video off.

    No offence to the members of Queen, but I never watched 'videos' in the 80's... music is music unless there's live video to go with it.

    I find the soundtrack DTS 5.1 mix spectacular for recordings that are mostly over 25 years old. Queen's music lends itself to surround and the lads who re-mixed these tunes deserve an award.

    One apples to apples comparison; I also own Elton John-One Night Only which has a DD track and a DTS track. The DTS track is noticably fuller and richer in sound quality.

    I am sure that the Hi-Res tracks on DVD-A and SACD sound spectacular, but I have yet to hear them due to the complexity of the hardware connection. From what I can gather, the sound of the Hi-Res tracks is solely dependant on the quality of the D/A converter built into the player.
     
  9. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

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  10. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

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  11. FeisalK

    FeisalK Screenwriter

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    what Gene DellaSalla found out in his review of the Yamaha receiver (in that audioholics article) was
     
  12. ReggieW

    ReggieW Screenwriter

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    DTS 24/96 actually uses MORE compression than stock DTS. I don't know all of the technical specifics, but I believe John Kotches has explained this in the past here. Honestly, I have yet to compare the DTS 24/96 on my Queen DVD-A's with the hi-res tracks as I usually go sttraight to the MLP track. Also, DTS does not offer 2-channel uncompressed audio like DVD-A (some at 24/192), which alone would kill DTS as a choice format for audiophiles.

    Reg
     
  13. David Judah

    David Judah Screenwriter

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  14. PhilBoy

    PhilBoy Second Unit

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    So, the sound quality of DVD-A is solely based on the quality of the player's D/A ?

    I remember my first cd player having 16X oversampling which I thought was amazing (I'm sure we all did back then).

    My second cd player had (has) a MASH D/A which I thought was a lot better than my first player.

    Now I have a new Yamaha DSP with optical-in which fortunately works with the optical out on the changer. This digital connection is night & day over the MASH D/A.

    In fact it's like having all my cd's remastered for the cost of a $20 Toslink.

    Too bad about all the piracy paranoia mucking up the Hi-Res music world.
     
  15. Adam Barratt

    Adam Barratt Cinematographer

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  16. CurtisC

    CurtisC Second Unit

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    As to the original ?,most explained it pretty well.Bottom line is dts and dd are fine for movies/concerts,even some dts audio cd's are pretty good.These are not in the same leauge as dvda and sacd.If you hear a good dvda,sacd on a properly set up quality system you will need no further convincing.
     
  17. Matt_Doug

    Matt_Doug Stunt Coordinator

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    Do all DVD-Audio disks have DTS 96/24 tracks?
     
  18. David Judah

    David Judah Screenwriter

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    All of the DTS DVD-As I have seen, Matt, are 24/48(oops,you were you talking about DTS's 24/96 format). There are only a few. Some music is captured that way(24/48)in the studio.

    DJ
     
  19. Matt_Doug

    Matt_Doug Stunt Coordinator

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    David, I was referring to the following from DTS's website:

    I have a philips q50 which claims to have 96/24 DAC's and DTS decoding. Just wanted to know if I bought any DVD-Audo disk could my q50 decode the DTS 96/24 track at full resolution instead of down converting to 48khz - thanks.
     
  20. David Judah

    David Judah Screenwriter

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    No, for the majority of DVD-A titles, you need a DVD-A capable player sending out analog signals from the DVD player's 5.1 channel output to the 5.1 channel input on your receiver or pre/pro(there are a few exceptions for those supporting firewire and other proprietary digital interfaces).

    The only way you can take advantage of DTS 24/96 at its full resolution as mentioned in your quote, is if you have a disc encoded in that format and a receiver or pre/pro that has the ability to decode it(it will have a DTS 96/24 logo on the front usually).

    Go here to see what is available. The DVD-A discs that contain DTS 24/96 will have a logo next to the thumbnail of the cover. There are eight titles that I can see.

    DJ
     

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