What happened to Blu-ray Audio?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by floyd, Mar 25, 2017.

  1. EddieVanHalen

    EddieVanHalen Forum Resident

    SACD is as user friendly as CD, pop in a disc and push play.
     
  2. The track list on that link is different than the Nirvana: Nirvana Blu-Ray Audio disc. I wonder if it's any different? Probably not I suppose.
     
  3. scobb

    scobb Forum Resident

    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    Sorry, when you said Nirvana I assumed Nevermind! I would be surprised if their other blu rays were any better? I think I did buy this one at the same time as Nevermind but with Nevermind being so bad never listened to Nirvana
     
  4. stax o' wax

    stax o' wax Forum Resident

    Location:
    The West
    Just a plug......Gentle Giants "Power & Glory" is a joy on Blu Ray.
     
  5. marcb

    marcb Forum Resident

    Location:
    DC area
    Except there is no difference...if the original file is the same they deliver the EXACT same information to whatever is doing the decoding. The EXACT same information.

    Did you listen to the same version of Roundabout? You don't make it clear whethere you compared stereo mixes or 5.1 mixes or both. There are two different 5.1 mixes on the BD-A (one the same 2002 mix as the DVD-A and a newer 5.1 mix) and two different stereo mixes - the original stereo mix and the more recent remix. And there are two different masterings of the original mix on the BD-A - a flat transfer of the original stereo master tape and a flat needledrop of the original UK vinyl - and neither is the same mastering as the stereo mix on the DVD-A.

    So of the 7 different presentations of the studio version of Roundabout on the DVD-A & BD-A, six are only found on one of the two discs. If you compared anything other than the 2002 5.1 mix found on both the DVD-A and the BD-A, you weren't comparing formats, you were comparing mixing and/or mastering differences.

    As for Pet Sounds, IIRC, the DVD-A and the BD-A use the same mixes, but the BD-A used newer 2012 masters for the mono and stereo mixes and a 2015 master for the 5.1 mix. So you were comparing apples and oranges.

    I'll repeat...DVD-A and BD-A deliver the EXACT same audio information if the original file is the same. Any differences would be attributable to either user set-up error or eqpt differences in handling different formats/algorithms (and in the case of Fragile, the algorithms are actually the same - both use LPCM). Or placebo effect.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2017
  6. PhilBiker

    PhilBiker sh.tv member number 666

    Location:
    Northern VA, USA
    Depends on the player. It's not that simple on my Denon. I have to click a specific button on the remote control to select the multichannel or the CD layer or the SACD layer. I have the player set to multichannel analog out - on my Sony DVD/SACD players and my Yamaha, when I selected multichannel analog output the players automatically selected the multichannel SACD layer by default. Not on the Denon. I have to select it every time. Minor annoyance, but not as easy as CD.
     
  7. Don't remember if I said it, but my players have their own decoders and my AV receiver has it's own decoder. I tried different combinations of decoders and the results were the same.
    OK. I pulled both my DVD-A and BD-A and read the booklets. Both use the same 2015 stereo mix, 5.1 mix, original stereo mix and the additional tracks, so there are 4 identical mixes common to both discs and those were the only ones we compared. The DVD-A sounds better over different hook-ups of my system and my friends system, on the 4 identically sourced masters.
    Because the BD-A has a higher capacity, it adds 3 exclusive tracks, the 2015 stereo instrumental mix, a previous 10-track original 5.1 mix version and a needle drop of the album. They also add 2 U.S. singles versions, but I'll stick with my own radio station promo 45's because they even sound better than those on the BD-A.
    I'm beginning to think that you don't have these discs or maybe don't even have both DVD-A and BD-A of the same album to compair?
     
  8. cdash99

    cdash99 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Mass
    Would that make it an ex-format?
     
  9. scobb

    scobb Forum Resident

    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    Hi rez physical formats remind me of this Red Dwarf sketch!

     
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  10. Sevoflurane

    Sevoflurane Forum Resident

    Location:
    West Yorkshire
    My very basic multichannel rig won't play DVDA (well, it plays the lossy audio on the DVDV part of the disc), and like a lot of people I find having to switch on a screen and navigate menus is a PITA. SACDs aren't afflicted by this issue. I have ripped all of the multichannel audio from my DVDAs and BDAs and have re burned the audio onto BDRs. 5.1 PCM audio when you out the disc in and press play, no screen required, and I can keep all of my precious discs in their packaging and play the copies. I just keep a spindle of BDRs next to my player.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2017
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  11. Brother_Rael

    Brother_Rael Forum Resident

    Location:
    Scottish Borders
    I'm not a huge fan but was very pleasantly surprised by the audio quality of the Nevermind regular CD. Never expected it to be so well recorded and mastered given the (supposed) low-fi ambitions of the grunge genre. The opening bars of Come As You Are were quite the eye - opener!
     
  12. marcb

    marcb Forum Resident

    Location:
    DC area
    Did you even read what I wrote? The Pet Sounds DVD-A and BD-A use the same identical mixes but different mastering. They're not the same. They contain different data. Of course you're going to find that you prefer the DVD-A over the BD-A with every equipment iteration you tried - you prefer the mastering on the DVD-A. But it's clear you don't understand that you're drawing conclusions about the formats based on apples and oranges comparisons.

    Yes, I have the Yes DVD-A and the BD-A. I have the Pet Sounds DVD-A, but not the BD-A (I don't like the album enough to buy it just for newer (and likely worse) masterings of the same mixes - and a sucky 5.1 mix at that).

    But it doesn't matter whether or not I have the discs. You simply are coming to conclusions about the relative sound merits of the two formats that can't possibly be true. I'll say this again a different way. With the exact same program material, DVD-A's don't inherently sound better or worse than BD-A's. They can't. The discs themselves don't have sound. They're just carriers of lossless data. It's the audio system -- yours, mine, your friend's, everybody's -- and the way it transports and converts the data that has sound.

    There are lots of reasons to prefer one of the hi-rez formats over another, but sound performance is not one of them.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2017
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  13. Didn't you read what I wrote?
    To discuss something when you don't have the software in question is meaningless.
    Yes. I understand that there are differences in hardware like night and day. And I understand that a file should be the same no matter what storage format it is on. Isn't the reason for buying a music disc is to listen to what is on it, no matter the format?
    I should have added that my BD player had a difficult time even booting up the Yes BD disc. There is another Rhino produced BD disc of another album which my BD player also had a problem booting up. I think that the Rhino discs may have not been manufactured correctly. Still, I have had the same sound issues with other BD-A and DVD-A discs with the same source files.
    I contacted a local high-end stereo store, one that you could easily walk away from $10.K lighter, and they confirmed that BD-A's don't live up to their potential due in part to their difficulty to play and that the average BD player has difficulty playing them. So, it probably may be an equipment issue. I am not willing to spend the kind of money it would take to buy a better BD player when I have no problems playing any of the other formats with what I've already got. I've only bought a couple of BD-A's with most coming in a particular set, like "Pet Sounds". I've never purchased any downloaded music either.
     
  14. lv70smusic

    lv70smusic Forum Resident

    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    It is true that Blu-ray discs (including audio only discs) seem more finicky. I couldn't play Grace Jones' Nightclubbing on my Oppo BDP-93 but it plays fine (and sounds excellent) on my Sony UBP-X800.
     
  15. marcb

    marcb Forum Resident

    Location:
    DC area
    Good grief. What does any of that have to do with the topic at hand?

    Now you're talking about hardware issues. As a data mechanism, DVD-A & BD-A carry the exact same data. They are inherently equal in terms of delivering quality sound. Period. End of story. One doesn't need to have the software itself to know this. It's scientific fact. It's like saying the same excel spreadsheet on a disc is going to show different results than the same file on a thumb drive. I don't need the file to know that they will be the same on the different delivery mechanisms.

    As I said, there are plenty of reasons to prefer or dislike any of the various formats. If you don't want to invest in a decent BD player that's fine - it's your money. But it's also your loss.

    For what it's worth, I've never had a single problem playing any BD or BD-A (I actually rip the stereo & 5.1 programs of my BD concerts and BD-A's and put them on my server). Or DVD-A or SACD for that matter (which I also rip). On the other hand, I have had problems playing and/or ripping DVDs and CDs - old technology - on rare occasions. Yet I don't use this as a rationale for saying those formats have sub-par performance.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2017
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  16. Steve G

    Steve G Forum Resident

    Location:
    los angeles
    that is disgusting about the watermarks - makes me angry just reading about it although I haven't gotten into hi-res downloads yet. But anyway, here are a couple of thoughts about DVD-A vs Blu-Ray - everyone on here seems to think they are identical. I dunno. My only experience is the Pink Floyd box set, where the DVD_As are at 48 and the Blu-Rays are at 96. On the Atom Heart Mother stuff the Blu-Ray does sound twice as good. There's just no comparison. However, on the Echoes 4.0, it's funny because there are artifacts and distortion on the Blu-Ray that aren't on the DVD-A. Now this is DVD-A at 48/24 that is kind of a hybrid with regular DVD on those ones. But somehow they messed up that Echoes transfer because there is definite noise in the center section. So there has to be SOMETHING they do differently in these systems because they do not sound identical. So I prefer the Blu-Ray of AHM and the DVD of Echoes. I would like to compare those Beatles mixes at some point. I have a universal player that I use for all formats so the chain is the same for everything, as is the room.
     
  17. It's stunned. We stunned it just as it was waking up.
     
  18. Sevoflurane

    Sevoflurane Forum Resident

    Location:
    West Yorkshire
    I didn't think the DVDs in the Floyd Early Years box set were DVD Audios; rather they are DVD Videos. The surround material on these DVD Videos uses lossy encoding. That could cause significant audible differences. There have been a few issues with the audio on the Blu Rays that appear to be a consequence of sloppy disc authoring, e.g. Atom Heart Mother won't play right to the end if you play the BD disc, whereas if you rip the audio the ripped file plays perfectly.

    When I consider how many surround discs have been recalled / replaced / found to be faulty I think you have to include bad authoring and human error as one of the reasons for audible differences. Examples: First batch of Rush A Farewell to Kings DVDA from Sector box set recalled as the stereo mix of Closer to the Heart was erroneously miced with just the front surround channels from the 5.1 mix. First Floyd WYWH Immersion box had audible pops during SOYCD.

    Quality control on these quite expensive surround releases has been pretty poor overall. Having said that, getting a bonus 5.1 mix of Meddle was one of the nicer mistakes on a Blu Ray.
     
  19. EddieVanHalen

    EddieVanHalen Forum Resident

    Not very usual the Denon way, normally is configure and forget about it unless one want to reconfigure, that makes SACD a "press play" format like cassette tapes and CD's. SACD doesn't need any firmware update either, and when a SACD device updates its firmware it's because it also plays another disc or file formats. SACD was engineered very much "the old way".
     
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  20. Steve G

    Steve G Forum Resident

    Location:
    los angeles
    Do you know if the 5.1 meddle is on the Devi/ation box or just the full set? I'd love to extract it if I could.
     
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  21. Sevoflurane

    Sevoflurane Forum Resident

    Location:
    West Yorkshire
    I believe (and if you dig out the Early Years box set content thread this is discussed over many pages) the Meddle 5.1 was only on the first batch of the full box set. Later box sets have this "error" corrected and I am pretty sure the individual box sets have had the Meddle 5.1 removed.
     
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  22. Postercowboy

    Postercowboy Member

    Location:
    Nowhereland
    With my BR-As, I have noticed three different types: Some are of the 'press play' variety. Others go to track one, but need me to press 'play' a second time to start them, the third type only shows the disc menu, and I have to grab the remote control and need to press 'enter' to play them.
    So far, I never had a problem with non-playing discs, but occasionally a disc fails to start, and I have reload it before it plays. This has never happened with any SACD or RBCD.

    If I had to chose between the two formats, my vote would go for SACD, no doubt about that. Then again, if the sound quality is comparable, and the BR-A is half the price or less, I will go for the BR-A.
     
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  23. Steve G

    Steve G Forum Resident

    Location:
    los angeles
    I agree that I would prefer SACD all the time, and to my ears the sound of SACD is better. I don't have good enough ears to hear any "SACD scream" or whatever that phenomenon is that people talk about - to me it's the best sounding format. It has a kind of lovely velvety roundness that the other formats just don't have.
     
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  24. Hardware issues IS the probable reason for the BD's not performing as well as a DVD-A for me. As another poster above stated. his Oppo BDP-93 has problems playing playing BD-A discs, so it is probably a hardware issue.
    I have more than a decent BD player and paid around $600. for it a few years ago. BD is obviously a more complicated format to play, as others have said. When the DVD-A came out, if you had a DVD player and surround sound system, chances are, it could play a DVD-A. My first Sony DVD player, well over a decade old, maybe 2, could play everything out at that time and when the DVD-A was introduced, could play that too. The BD-A is a new story and is evidently not compatible with all BD players.
    If I want multi-channel music, I'll just stick to the DVD-A and SACD formats, they work.
     
  25. marcb

    marcb Forum Resident

    Location:
    DC area
    Probable. Probably. Chances are. Evidently.

    You sure do draw conclusions based on supposition and non-facts.

    As I said, I've never had a BD, DVD-A or SACD not work (and I easily have 500+ combined) - except when my laser started to go on my SACD player years ago. But I've had CDs and DVDs not work. Yet I don't draw conclusions about entire formats based on some flimsy anecdoctal evidence.

    In the meantime, I'm not going to needlessly limit myself. I'm going to enjoy all the stuff I want to enjoy on all of the formats I can while I can (and have to) - despite each's weaknesses.

    But if record companies would simply release all of this stuff as downloads - particularly the 5.1 and the well mastered stereo stuff - I'd be on that highway exclusively in a heartbeat and wouldn't have to worry about spinning discs and storing them. Frankly I'm already halfway there since I rip all of these spinning discs as soon as get them anyway - never to opened again. So the format is meaningless.
     

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