Neil Young Goes Ahead With Pono Player, Best Quality Music

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QEFX

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"Neil Young Goes Ahead With Pono Player" ... I so read that wrong the 1st time.

While I appreciate true high quality music, 300MB per song may just be a little steep at this point in time.

Can't wait to actually hear the sound quality and see just how much better it is than a high quality CD with a proper sound system.

Then I will just need the music industry to get rid of auto-tuned no talent musicians who can't read / write music or play an instrument and bring back actual musicians.
 

Parsian

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why would i need this when i can play .FLAC on my Android device? I havent tried 24 bit resolution but im certain if it cannot play now, it will be soon as hardwares get faster and libraries grow.

 

xpeh

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[citation][nom]qefx[/nom]"Neil Young Goes Ahead With Pono Player" ... I so read that wrong the 1st time.While I appreciate true high quality music, 300MB per song may just be a little steep at this point in time.Can't wait to actually hear the sound quality and see just how much better it is than a high quality CD with a proper sound system. Then I will just need the music industry to get rid of auto-tuned no talent musicians who can't read / write music or play an instrument and bring back actual musicians.[/citation]

I read Porno Player and thought "I'll have to consider this sometime"
 

tolham

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Neil's heart is in the right place, but his execution is horribly off the mark. 16/44.1 and mp3 are perfectly capable of preserving enough audio fidelity for the human ear. the biggest problem with music production is the *MASTERING* - nearly every album released in the last ~15 years is hellishly compressed&clipped into a solid brick. Neil should put his money and energy into educating the public about this problem and convincing the labels to end the loudness war.
 

bavman

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This is great for audiophiles. The thing is though....that if you want to put that format to good use you'll need some hardcore equipment. True audiophile grade headphones run in the range of $1000, and another $1000-2000 DAC/AMP to power it. This is certainly not portable....so why would you make a portable device that is capable of doing this? Very good portable headphones are those that don't need external amplification and run $300-400 tops, but at that level you won't notice a difference between say this and FLAC. So even though its a nice idea, i really doubt anyone will go for it, since it would only be of good use at home.
 

Miharu

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Parsian: Your Android device will downgrade the quality to be played properly. You actually need special hardware supporting 24bit for play it correctly - audio chip and speaker. Most hardware stop at 16bit since vendors tell it's the standard.

tolham: Human can hear the difference between 16bit and 24bit, musicians at least. 16/44.1 mp3 could be consider high quality and 90% fidelity. New format 24 bit would be consider ultra high quality with 99-100% fidelity. The difference it's not so big, probably most people won't buy theirs libraries a second time for that but it's a standard that industry must adopt someday. That industry still sell you CD (in wav format) and haven't figure out a more secure format.

If Neil do a great job, it's could be the next big thing. There are tons of IThing too be change.
 

nukemaster

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[citation][nom]tolham[/nom]Neil's heart is in the right place, but his execution is horribly off the mark. 16/44.1 and mp3 are perfectly capable of preserving enough audio fidelity for the human ear. the biggest problem with music production is the *MASTERING* - nearly every album released in the last ~15 years is hellishly compressed&clipped into a solid brick. Neil should put his money and energy into educating the public about this problem and convincing the labels to end the loudness war.[/citation]
God yes!
 

SirTrollsALot

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I always thought converting analog or CD's,or raw fileas to .OGG format was the best format for players, if they could play .OGG formats... Correct me if I am wrong.
 

tolham

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the only way you can tell the difference between 16 and 24 bit music is if you perform a double-blind test on very expensive professional equipment and train yourself to hear minute artifacts. in other words, there is no perceptible difference in the real world. the sad fact is, human hearing is lousy. 16/44.1 is more than enough fidelity, and mp3 v0 is transparent to 99.99% of people. the industry doesn't need to move to a higher resolution, the industry needs to stop compressing and clipping the sh!t out of the mixes.


pono is going fail, period. there is very little demand for high resolution music, and portable high resolution music is basically impossible. like i said above, in order to even hear the difference you need very expensive professional equipment. as in, arrays of high-end amps. that faux toblerone in Neil's hand can't possibly house the guts or the juice to fully produce 24/192 music. and even if it did, there are no headphones that can fully amplify it.
 

thezooloomaster

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[citation][nom]Parsian[/nom]why would i need this when i can play .FLAC on my Android device? I havent tried 24 bit resolution but im certain if it cannot play now, it will be soon as hardwares get faster and libraries grow.[/citation]

Indeed. Unless you have $1000 earphones, I doubt you would be able to tell the difference between the common lossless music you can find today and this "super-high-res" stuff.
 

wavetrex

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Audiophilia (invented word?) is a mental disease, similar to necrophilia for example...
It's people that spend exorbitant amounts of money on equipment which provide little to no benefit over a decent common audio-replay device thinking that they have "better" years than everyone else, and show affection and attachment to that equipment, like it's the most precious thing they have in life.

I can agree that a BAD quality equipment, headphone or speaker can degrade the listening experience, but once you reach common Hi-Fi standards, there's simply no point in going further.

As for digital recording, there is a large difference between 128kbps mp3 and 192kbps, a smaller but also easily observable difference between 192kbps and 256kbps, and from there to FLAC or WAV 44Khz/16bit also a very tiny difference.
24 bit ? 96 khz ? Seriously, pointless for playback. They are only useful when transferring or mixing sound, because digital processing introduces distortion, which adds up. Using higher formats reduces that effect. But once the sound reached it's final format and gets mastered, 44khz which is double the upper limit for human ear and 16 bit resolution (65.5k signal levels) are WAY more than enough for the fidelity of our old prehistoric ear )

Actually, all these "High Def" things server ONE purpose... and one purpose only. To get more money out of the gullible buyer who "think" that if it's more expensive and has bigger numbers written on it, it MUST be better.
Yeah. Capitalism 101.
 

troutmask

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Neil Young's mantra is that with mp3 you only get 5% of the sound. That's like Stephen King complaining that ebooks (which are compressed text) provide only 5% of the reading enjoyment of a paperback.

And if I listen to Psychedelic Pill (Young's latest album) on headphones, I can easily hear tape hiss on some tracks. Is that the vaunted sound quality that he's talking about? Would his Pono reproduce that hiss with greater clarity?
 

Tomtompiper

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My Samsung plays Ogg Vorbis, and the quality is better than the crap Apple deliver, but this device is for a very small niche market. His time would be better spent trying to get Apple to improve the quality of their offerings.
 

in_the_loop

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The audiophiles can go ahead and throw away money at somtehing that nobody, musician or not, will be able to tell the difference from 16 bit, 44 kHz and probably most people noit even from normal 128 bit mp3.

The only reason for using 24 bits for musician is that you get a lot of headroom when you record and mix. When there are a lot of tracks at different levels being summed up it may make a difference, but blindtests show that nobody can tell the difference between 16 bit and 24 bit from a finalized track.

The CD-standard is superior in every way of form compared to even the best mastertape (which seldom are used anymore) when it comes to dynamics, frequency response, distorsion and anything you can throw at it.

That was considered the ultimate before and some still swears to it due to the "Analogue superior character", claiming it has specs (that can't be measured) better than CD in some way.
It is just that people that like analogue like the distorsion that comes with it.

By the way, the notion that this player makes the sound analogue is hilarious. Everything that is in the digital domain have to be converted to analoge. It is called a DAC (Digital to Analogue Converter).
What he is doing is to put just another digital processor (yes digital!) on top of what is already an absurd amount of overprocessing done at the master stage (compression and the likes).

Hell, there was a blind test (german I think) using trained pros (audio technicians, musicians) where they couldn't tell the difference between 128 kbit and 256 kbit mp3 files.

 

chewy1963

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This is kind of like those out there who are clamoring for 4k video despite the fact they'll need a 100" display viewed at like 5 feet to be able to see the difference. Human hearing is limited to around 20hz to 20,000hz. That is easily reproduced at 16bit 44 KHz resolution. The only question from there is can your equipment (amp/speakers) meet the 20-20,000hz spec.
 

vittau

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He should focus on providing good stock headphones with it (as most people don't care to replace it) and a high quality headphone amplifier, instead of 192k/24-bit playback (which is completely useless).

But it's pretty obvious he's gonna turn this [192k/24-bit playback] into a marketing ploy, even some so called audiophiles believe this. They must have never heard of the Nyquist-Shannon sampling theorem.
 

jcb82

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We (the mass market) stopped caring about music quality about 10 years ago. There's not much more juice to be squeezed out of the digital quality orange and its not worth the extra expense. If this was for minimal additional expense, then I'm sure people will acquiesce otherwise its true a diminishing returns scenario. I'm sorry Mr. Young, if this is supposed to be a mass market device, it is going to bomb.
 
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