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Neil Young readies Pono music service for expansion Part 4

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by stereoptic, Oct 24, 2014.

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  1. Steve Martin

    Steve Martin Wild & Crazy Guy

    Plano, TX
    No, it is just a pretty light that comes on to let you know that you are playing a song you bought from the Pono store.

    Many people are interested in repurposing it, for example to light up for any high res music etc. But, no, it serves no actual purpose and doesn't change the music any.
  2. jonboy71

    jonboy71 Forum Resident

    Oxnard, CA
    Here is the posting with a link to the program to create your own tag to trigger the blue light

    Eggert Ehmke (Member)
    Hello, for the Windows users (probably the majority) I created a Windows version of the application. It should run in 64bit Windows systems.
    In the file share at
    you find a Windows 64bit folder. There is a flactag-5.0.5.zip file in there. When you unpack the zip, it should expand into a dist folder. You can move and rename this folder as you like. In the folder are some helper files and the main app flactag.exe. Just give it a double click.
    Is there a volunteer to try this out? Please report of any success or failure. Beside the application window, a command shell window is opened. Here you see some diagnostic messages. If anything goes wrong, please send me a screen shot of that black screen.
  3. You'll see over in the "Beatles on Pono" thread, that Mahalo has also confirmed in an e-mail to Andrew Smith, that the Beatles actually are coming to Pono.
    Billy Budapest, oneway23 and Grant like this.
  4. Fritz G23

    Fritz G23 Forum Resident

    Kinda like the old KMart blue light specials? ;-)
  5. cwsiggy

    cwsiggy Forum Resident

    Vero Beach, FL
    yes - now if they could just make their download store work like an Apple product and not a Walmart product , I'd be a lot happier... download failed, download failed, download failed.... I may be ebaying my player anyway as I find I'm not using it as much as I thought I would..
  6. Stereosound

    Stereosound Forum Resident

  7. Here's an excerpt I found interesting. (If this kind of quoting isn't allowed, let me know.)

    I think the higher resolution sounds reveal themselves not in A/B testing, but in long periods of time. Play an entire album in a relaxed atmosphere at 96 kHz/24-bit, then, at the end, listen to it at 44.1 kHz/16-bit, and you’ll get it right away. A/B testing, while the only scientific method we have, does not reveal too much with short-term back-and-forth comparisons due to the anxiety the brain is under doing such a test. The brain becomes very left-brain-technical, rather than right-brain creative and musical.
  8. Grant

    Grant Just chillin'!

    United States
    I may have already posted this, but I downloaded Stevie Wonder's "That Girl" in 24-bit/192 on "Original Musiquarium" from Pono. I immediately loaded up all copies I have of it from other CDs into an audio editor and compared them all. Of course, I used the Hi-rez version as the standard.

    I found that the song on the U.S. version of "Song Review" was loud, and Stevie's voice sounded very thin and squeezed. The bass was also light and squeezed. The European version was less loud, but was still as squeezed as the U.S. version. Both featured a strange tonal shift, probably due to the noise shaping used when dithered to redbook.

    The 2000"Original Musiquarium" CD remaster was the worst. It was the loudest, EQ'ed trebly, and compressed. 'Nuff said about that.

    The older 80s "Original Musiquarium" CD was the closest to the hi-rez, but was two-dimensional. His voice was still pinched.

    The winner? the hi-rez. Even after I sample-rate converted and dithered the hi-rez to redbook with my settings in MBIT+, that still sounded better than the other CDs.
  9. Can you describe the differences between the hi-rez and your sample-rate converted and dithered the hi-rez to redbook versions?
  10. Grant

    Grant Just chillin'!

    United States
    Well, the soundstage was a bit narrower, and there was less front-to-back depth. the timbre changed just a tad, but less than with the "Song Review" CDs, but that is because I use noise shaping, too. But, again the overall roundness of his voice, and the weight in the bass is still there.
    gregorya likes this.
  11. testikoff

    testikoff Seasoned n00b

    And what would those settings be (if you don't mind me asking)?.. ;)
  12. Grant

    Grant Just chillin'!

    United States
    Bear in mind that I need to sit down one day and tweak them further, but...

    In iZotope MBIT+ settings are:
    Sample rate Conversion to 44.1:
    Steepness: 150
    Maximum Filter Length: 1,000,000
    Cutoff Scaling: 1.00
    Alias Suppression: 200
    Pre-ring: 100

    Dither Mode: MBIT+
    Noise Shaping: Medium
    Dither Amount: Low

    Now: these are settings, as in Sound Forge 10. I have not really used them in Ozone, where the settings are more comprehensive. I have not really played around with Sound Forge's native dither program. I have used Adobe Audition 4's settings, and, while I don't feel like looking to see what settings I use there, I have gotten fairly good results from it.

    Noise shaping: my personal opinion is that, while flat dither (without noise shaping) is what the pro industry is into these days, particularly because they have had to deal with compressed-data files such as AAC and mp3, and what the end-user does in unpredictable, and the sad fact that some labels must use manufactured CDs as their mastering source, I like what noise shaping can do.

    Please play around with my settings and come up with something better. I just have never liked the sound of default settings in any program.
  13. testikoff

    testikoff Seasoned n00b

    Good to know (I prefer a medium-type noise shaped dither via MDA VST plug-in & SoX' linear-phase VHQ SRC). Somehow I assumed that you (as self-proclaimed avid dither noise listener ;)) would likely use, say, MBIT+ Extreme noise shaping (a la Barry Diament)...
  14. Grant

    Grant Just chillin'!

    United States
    I found that using the extreme setting makes the music sound too trebly. I'm not going to copy what some famous person does just because they are famous. I have to find my own way.
    Billy Budapest likes this.
  15. testikoff

    testikoff Seasoned n00b

    Respect. Same here... ;)
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2015
    Billy Budapest and Grant like this.
  16. Archimago

    Archimago Forum Resident

  17. bcd

    bcd Member

    Sorry, but the experience of trying to read text with that horrible redish background is about equivelent with listening to an 3rd generation mp3 file. Hurts the same.

    How is it possible to care so much about ears and so little about eyes?
    oneway23 likes this.
  18. ServingTheMusic

    ServingTheMusic Forum Resident

  19. oneway23

    oneway23 Forum Resident

    NY, US
    Everyone with a blog and a run-on sentence is a journalist these days...cute.
    T'mershi Duween likes this.
  20. thrivingonariff

    thrivingonariff Forum Resident

    Your point, in relation to the linked article, being what?
  21. Jeez! Bad, bad choices to populate the PonoMusic store with.

    I like the PonoPlayer hardware--a lot. I like hi-res music--a lot. But it's all in vain if crappy, brickwalled masterings are what's for sale in the store. People will but them and think, wait a minute, this PonoMusic STILL sounds like $#!+ !!!!
    dobyblue, Starwanderer and c-eling like this.
  22. Stereosound

    Stereosound Forum Resident

  23. Grant

    Grant Just chillin'!

    United States
    Seems to me that people are whipping Pono because it's an easy target. The real problem with the state of audio lies with the record labels and the artists, the two hardest parts of the equation to get to.
  24. c-eling

    c-eling Fruit Juice Everywhere

    I completely agree Grant, If I did personal audio I'd probably grab the player, the hardware specs looks good
  25. darkmass

    darkmass Forum Resident

    And I agree. I'd also add that it seems to have become a fad to whip Pono, particularly among people who've never even heard the physical device.
    Billy Budapest likes this.
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