Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

compact disc, dacs, mp3 players and streaming audio
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andybeau
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Re: Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

Post by andybeau » 18 Aug 2019 19:04

I think John Peel said it best: "Somebody was trying to tell me that CDs are better than vinyl because they don't have any surface noise. I said, 'Listen, mate, life has surface noise."

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Re: Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

Post by Sunwire » 18 Aug 2019 21:11

No it does NOT suggest that everything is analog.
Sound is sound.
Analog ALWAYS refers to a representation of something else. An attempt at copying something else or creating a simulation of something else.
The original thing being represented or copied or simulated is NOT analog. It is itself. Only the representation/copy/simulation is analog.

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Re: Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

Post by Shadowman82 » 19 Aug 2019 04:08

andybeau wrote:
18 Aug 2019 19:04
I think John Peel said it best: "Somebody was trying to tell me that CDs are better than vinyl because they don't have any surface noise. I said, 'Listen, mate, life has surface noise."
As I've said if the record is clean and not damaged I can usually only hear surface noise in between tracks and in certain quiet parts of the music but even then it doesn't bother me .

andybeau
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Re: Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

Post by andybeau » 19 Aug 2019 11:00

Shadowman82 wrote:
19 Aug 2019 04:08
andybeau wrote:
18 Aug 2019 19:04
I think John Peel said it best: "Somebody was trying to tell me that CDs are better than vinyl because they don't have any surface noise. I said, 'Listen, mate, life has surface noise."
As I've said if the record is clean and not damaged I can usually only hear surface noise in between tracks and in certain quiet parts of the music but even then it doesn't bother me .
I think you're missing the point

Luicas
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Re: Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

Post by Luicas » 19 Aug 2019 14:46

TL;DR through all of the topic, but guys, Digital is definitely the superior format. Technically and evidence based.

I collect and play Vinyl because it is fun, and appeals to childhood/adolescence musical experiences in the late 70’s and the 80’s.

I like vinyl because it requires a lot of user intervention and geekiness in terms of hardware selection and setting up. It is entirely a personal preference not based on science.

There are certainly many good sounding LP’s, and many are better mixed and mastered than their CD counterparts. Dynamic Range is seriously botched on many CD releases. And also, there are many awfully mastered and/or cut LP’s. Many. MO’s Tubular Bells comes to mind. Quality control was and still is a serious issue with Vinyl.

But recently, at least in terms of Apple Music and CD re-releases, a lot of effort has been put on remastering digital material, and TBH, it blasts away vinyl. Even on compressed streaming formats. PF The Wall comes to mind.

There is a lot of nonsense throughout this thread, emotions and technobabble have been stronger than any evidence. Let’s not forget the psychoacoustic phenomena. And placebo effects.

I like music. I like tinkering with equipment. But I’ve given up on the search for audio nirvana, it’s pointless, expensive, and unattainable.

FWIW, digital has given me a far superior aural experience than vinyl. But vinyl is more fun to me. And gives me a special satisfaction in knowing I’ve set up my system to sound so good, against all odds.

Cheers and enjoy the music, that’s what’s important.

Luis

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Re: Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

Post by Shadowman82 » 20 Aug 2019 00:14

Often remastered digital of older music actually sounds worse . While maybe the argument could be made that well mastered CD can sound as good as Vinyl I just shake my head at anyone who claims digital stuff of less than CD quality does . Plus I believe if we looked at new CD releases of 2019 I wouldn't be surprised if at least 80% of them are mastered like crap .

Luicas
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Re: Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

Post by Luicas » 20 Aug 2019 05:46

Shadowman82 wrote:
20 Aug 2019 00:14
Often remastered digital of older music actually sounds worse .
Very true. And I might have been misunderstood.

It’s a fact that many albums sound their best in vinyl.



Regarding the OP’s original question.....As to the meaning of “warm” analog sound and that being a good thing, it’s a tricky affair. A live, non amplified drum kit does not have a “warm” sound. Nor a violin, or a banjo, or a jazz piano, etc. What I’m getting at is that live instruments are far from “warm”.



Now, at home, whether it’s a digital or an analog source, one can always use the treble knob for a warmer tone if needed or desired....

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Re: Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

Post by Roberto C2H3 » 20 Aug 2019 14:32

Luicas wrote:
19 Aug 2019 14:46
But vinyl is more fun to me. And gives me a special satisfaction in knowing I’ve set up my system to sound so good, against all odds.

Cheers and enjoy the music, that’s what’s important.

Luis
Ciao from Buenos Aires, Luis :D

The more I learn regarding the physical / electronic aspect of how music is encoded and decoded using vinyl records as a medium, the more magical it seems to me.

There is a section of a Lederman's video in the Soundsmith home page in which he states something to this effect: "It should not work, but it does. And it works very well." I believe it is the video entitled: "Why analog is digital and how to fix it."

Every time I drop a stylus on a record, and the music starts, my soul smiles. Heck, it begins to smile as soon as I hear the needle drop on the lead in part of the groove 8) To me, that is very important. After all, music IMO is all about emotion.

I do not get any near that feeling when the music begins from the play back from a cd or a digital file.

Best from the Pampas,
roberto

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Re: Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

Post by Gravitar8 » 20 Aug 2019 14:37

Simplified! Prove me wrong:

Sound=vibration=waves
Oboe=breath vibrates reed=waves
LP with Oboe=motion of turning record vibrates stylus and cantilever=movement of magnet=captured analogous signal
LP Preamp/et al=captured analogous signal (voltage) amplified=moves magnet/speaker cone=reproduced original sound (vibration) of Oboe
Digital file/CD/DVD-A/SACD/et al with Oboe=no mechanical motion no analog magic.

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Re: Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

Post by andybeau » 20 Aug 2019 14:39

Gravitar8 wrote:
20 Aug 2019 14:37
Simplified! Prove me wrong:

Sound=vibration=waves
Oboe=breath vibrates reed=waves
LP with Oboe=motion of turning record vibrates stylus and cantilever=movement of magnet=captured analogous signal
LP Preamp/et al=captured analogous signal (voltage) amplified=moves magnet/speaker cone=reproduced original sound (vibration) of Oboe
Digital file/CD/DVD-A/SACD/et al with Oboe=no mechanical motion no analog magic.
What about speakers?

Luicas
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Re: Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

Post by Luicas » 20 Aug 2019 14:48

Roberto C2H3 wrote:
20 Aug 2019 14:32


Every time I drop a stylus on a record, and the music starts, my soul smiles. Heck, it begins to smile as soon as I hear the needle drop on the lead in part of the groove 8) To me, that is very important. After all, music IMO is all about emotion.
Couldn’t have said it better.

Saludos desde Monterrey!

Luis

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Re: Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

Post by Gravitar8 » 20 Aug 2019 16:59

"moves magnet/speaker cone"
but okay lets add
Horn Speaker=transducer moves voice coil=voice coil vibrates=horn focuses vibration=reproduced original sound (vibration) of Oboe


What I am simply trying to say is that LP reproduction is mechanical in nature- digital is not. Substitute the word mechanical for analog and all of this thread makes more sense.


andybeau wrote:
20 Aug 2019 14:39
Gravitar8 wrote:
20 Aug 2019 14:37
Simplified! Prove me wrong:

Sound=vibration=waves
Oboe=breath vibrates reed=waves
LP with Oboe=motion of turning record vibrates stylus and cantilever=movement of magnet=captured analogous signal
LP Preamp/et al=captured analogous signal (voltage) amplified=moves magnet/speaker cone=reproduced original sound (vibration) of Oboe
Digital file/CD/DVD-A/SACD/et al with Oboe=no mechanical motion no analog magic.
What about speakers?

Sunwire
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Re: Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

Post by Sunwire » 20 Aug 2019 18:38

Gravitar8 wrote:
20 Aug 2019 14:37
Simplified! Prove me wrong:

Sound=vibration=waves
Oboe=breath vibrates reed=waves
LP with Oboe=motion of turning record vibrates stylus and cantilever=movement of magnet=captured analogous signal
LP Preamp/et al=captured analogous signal (voltage) amplified=moves magnet/speaker cone=reproduced original sound (vibration) of Oboe
Digital file/CD/DVD-A/SACD/et al with Oboe=no mechanical motion no analog magic.
You are claiming that analog is magic and digital is not magic?
That's a claim that's impossible to prove or disprove.

Gravitar8
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Re: Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

Post by Gravitar8 » 20 Aug 2019 18:40

You Sir used the word 'magic' not I.
I only claim that there is an objective and subjective difference between sound reproduced via mechanical/electronic means versus non-mechanical/electronic means. After all, our ears and brains are mechanical/electronic not non-mechanical/electronic!
Prove me wrong.
Sunwire wrote:
20 Aug 2019 18:38
Gravitar8 wrote:
20 Aug 2019 14:37
Simplified! Prove me wrong:

Sound=vibration=waves
Oboe=breath vibrates reed=waves
LP with Oboe=motion of turning record vibrates stylus and cantilever=movement of magnet=captured analogous signal
LP Preamp/et al=captured analogous signal (voltage) amplified=moves magnet/speaker cone=reproduced original sound (vibration) of Oboe
Digital file/CD/DVD-A/SACD/et al with Oboe=no mechanical motion no analog magic.
You are claiming that analog is magic and digital is not magic?
That's a claim that's impossible to prove or disprove.

Sunwire
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Re: Why can't digital sound as 'warm' as analog?

Post by Sunwire » 20 Aug 2019 18:43

I was quoting you:
Gravitar8 wrote:
20 Aug 2019 14:37

Digital file/CD/DVD-A/SACD/et al with Oboe=no mechanical motion no analog magic.

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