Posted on Thursday, 17th January 2008 by Auw Jimmy
Okay, I still read a lot of people claiming that he has a 24 bit 192 kHz CD Audio. And he asks me which CD Player will suit him to play 24 bit 192 kHz CD Audio. I will explain a little bit. Read it carefully.
You may see a lot of “audiophile wanna-be” CD Audio with 24 bit 192 kHz logo like the picture above. I never say that the CD Audio with that label will have bad sound. No and never. I never say that. The quality of a CD Audio will be affected by many factors.
The point from this article is to clarify that there’s no such thing of 24 bit 192 kHz CD Audio.
All CD Audio will follow Red Book standard which means that all CD Audio will have 16 bit 44.1 kHz as standard. Otherwise, it will not be playable on your standard CD Player.
So why do I see many claims “24 bit 192 kHz” on their CD Audio?
It’s not totally a bullshit. The producer from that CD may work in 24 bit 192 kHz domain while editing or mastering the music. But at the end, you have to dither it down to 16 bit 44.1 kHz to fit it on the CD Audio standard. So what you buy is a 16 bit 44.1 kHz CD Audio.
Some player (stand alone/dedicated player) or PC/Mac/Linux audio software player may have resampling/oversampling/dithering function to raise the resolution. But believe me, higher doesn’t mean always better. Poor implementation resampling/oversampling/dithering will bring you trouble than good result. Usually, only special/expensive resampling/oversampling/dithering will bring good result.
This kind of 24 bit 192 kHz logo is also nice, short, and effective way to attract newcomer audiophile. They will easily attracted to such thing. And also the sales/marketing understands this kind of phenomena. That’s why you can see many CD Audio use such 24 bit 192 kHz label, though when you hear the sound, (for some of them) the quality is below average. Good CD Audio like this one and this one and this one usually never put such information. Good is good, despite of what label used on the cover.
Do I need 24 bit 192 kHz sound card?
Question above also very popular asked to me. My short general answer to most people: No. In the real life, almost all people never use resolution higher than 16 bit 48 kHz. All your MP3, WAV, CD Audio, Loseless compression, iPod, AAC, etc will run at 16 bit 44.1 kHz. Your DVD will run at 16 bit 48 kHz.
Maybe some of you have DVD Audio (with the one and only sound card support it, the Creative Audigy/X-Fi family). This is the one and only high resolution recording which needs 24 bit 96/192 kHz features on your sound card. Off course, if you have it!
If you don’t have it, then there’s no use to buy 24 bit 192 kHz sound card. Exception if you are doing recording. Though in many occasion you will never record at 24 bit 192 kHz, but it’s a quite must for your investment in the future.
Ok, end of the short course for today. Enjoy the music!