PCM rocks

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Bill Bradstreet, Jan 14, 2002.

  1. Bill Bradstreet

    Bill Bradstreet Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2001
    Messages:
    149
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I just put in the DVD Stomp Out Loud. I watched the whole thing on Dolby Digital 5.1. They did a good job of producing a surround effect.

    Well, I just switched to the PCM feed and am amazed at the difference in clarity. I'd never bothered to do a test with something like this.

    Now I can't wait for some amps and better speakers!
     
  2. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2000
    Messages:
    9,413
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Dolby Digital is a highly compressed format, and as such, generally does not work well for music. DTS is better, but uncompressed PCM is better yet. Then again, DSD (i.e., SACD) is the best. [​IMG]
     
  3. Scott-C

    Scott-C Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2001
    Messages:
    863
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I'm going to ask an incredibly newbie question here, but can someone give me a basic definition of PCM? I don't quite know how to define it. It's not the same as a multi-channel surround format, and it's not the same as two-channel audio either, is it?

    Is PCM a digital signal taken from the source, using the DACs of the receiver or pre/pro?

    And does PCM relate to the various sampling frequencies that are thrown around in this or other forums?
     
  4. Michael St. Clair

    Joined:
    May 3, 1999
    Messages:
    6,001
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
     
  5. Scott-C

    Scott-C Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2001
    Messages:
    863
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    So is this something that I select on my receiver if the CD/DVD has a PCM channel? Every now and then I notice my receiver's LED display says "PCM 44.1 Khz" (or something like that). I guess if the software has a PCM track I would just turn the "Effect" setting (the DSP setting) on my receiver to "off" to get to the PCM track.
     
  6. Marty Neudel

    Marty Neudel Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 1999
    Messages:
    223
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Bill,

    PCM stands for Pulse Coded Modulation. It is a method for encoding sound in digital "bursts," noting only the changes in sound between them. It was chosen in the '80's as the most efficient method for recording sound digitally. As has been mentioned, it is the method used for cd's. MLP losslessly compresses the pcm data for dvd-a.

    Marty
     
  7. Bill Bradstreet

    Bill Bradstreet Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2001
    Messages:
    149
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    PCM was an audio choice on the DVD. You would have to navigate the DVD menu to find it. I then left the effects off and got beautifully clean sound.
     
  8. Richard Burzynski

    Richard Burzynski Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1997
    Messages:
    466
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    On the rare occasion when a PCM soundtrack is included, is it documented on the back of DVD box? You know, DD 5.1, PCM 2.0?

    Rich B.
     
  9. Paul_Fisher

    Paul_Fisher Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2001
    Messages:
    1,219
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I also like PCM, when I switch to it instead of Bitstream on my DVD player, the sound gets louder and much clearer. The only problem is that you can't listen to Dolby Digital while using PCM. If I'm going to watch a movie that doesn't have alot of action scenes, then I will use PCM. But if I'm going to watch a movie such as Gladiator, then I switch to Bitstream and use Dobly Digital.
     
  10. NathanP

    NathanP Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2001
    Messages:
    841
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I've heard selecting PCM and then selecting DPL works good, but I've never done it myself..
     
  11. Bill Bradstreet

    Bill Bradstreet Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2001
    Messages:
    149
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Does this equate to reading the manual? ;-)

    Actually, you are partially correct. Typically you can get all audio tracks on the DVD from the back cover. BUT this is not the case 100% of the time.

    The Grinch has a DVS track, but the box does not mention this. It mentions captioning, but not descriptive video services which does exist. The track is great! My wife was able to watch a DVD while I could still appreciate Dolby Digital surround sound. The narration isn't very intrusive either.
     
  12. Mattias_ka

    Mattias_ka Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    May 21, 2001
    Messages:
    567
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    To bad that there are not so many dvd's with PCM.

    That's why I love my laserdisc so much *Big huge*
     
  13. Salvador

    Salvador Second Unit

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2001
    Messages:
    431
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    When i first watched The Eagles hell.... disc i selected DTS and sound was incredibly clear and detailed. I was somewhat dissatisfied with the bass since i know that the Studio 20's that i have could produce more punch that what i was hearing. I switched to PCM and my God, all of a sudden the bass was overpowering. From what i heard, PCM didn't offer as much clarity as DTS, but then again maybe the bass was just shadowing the details. In the end i chose DTS since i wanted to hear the intricacies of he disc. If i ever buy a rock DVD though, i think i would choose PCM.
     

Share This Page