Converting 24bit/96khz to 16bit/44.1khz

Discussion in 'Mastering' started by jbexp, Dec 21, 2004.

  1. jbexp

    jbexp Guest

    I have a question about converting from 24/96 down to 16/44.1:

    I am currently working with a project that was recorded and mixed at 24bit/96khz. It sounded very good at that resolution, but then I used the ProTools "bounce to disk" function to save a 16bit/44.1khz copy of the master stereo mix. The lower resolution file felt like it was messy, sloppy, and not conveying as much detail as it could. I understand it can't convey all of the detail of the high-res master simply because the format is lower-res, both in dynamic range and frequency spectrum. But I do think the lo-res master could (and should) sound better than it does. I used the "Slowest Conversion (Tweak Head)" and the "Convert after bounce" settings hoping they would yield the best conversion.

    Does anybody have any good information or recommendations to get better results when lowering the wordlength and sample rate? I do have the Waves Gold plugins, don't know if that helps.
  2. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    Protools really is bad at SRC, this is what you're hearing. Your best bet would be a hardware SRC or you can try a program like Barbabatch. If these are out of your budget, then maybe you know someone with another program that you can try it on and see what it sounds like. In none of these are an option, you can do a D/A/D capturing at 16/44.1 if you have good converters.
  3. Reggie

    Reggie Well-Known Member

    Not that I am an authority, but I didn't hear any mention of him dithering to get from 24 bits to 16. That should help some, right?
  4. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    that would help too.
  5. mixandmaster

    mixandmaster Active Member

    What ProTools system are you using?
  6. jbexp

    jbexp Guest

    First of all, thanks to everyone for their good info. I am using Pro Tools LE through a Digidesign 002. I understand that dithering is important, so I am assuming the "Tweak Head"
    conversion in protools does dither. Is this correct? Also, I checked out Barbabatch. Looks like a great program, but I am running a Windows system and they don't have a windows version. Does anyone have any other suggestions for good windows software to convert down to 44.1/16bit, or any other good information to do the best conversion possible? Thanks
  7. Massive Mastering

    Massive Mastering Well-Known Member

    I'm with Michael - I haven't heard to many programs that do as nice of a job as a loop through some quality converters.

    Voxengo's R8Brain is a fairly nice stand-alone if you want to try it. Free, also. There's a new "Pro" version as well if I'm not mistaken.
  8. jbexp

    jbexp Guest

    Thanks guys, I truly appreciate the help. So if I'm not mistaken, I should be able to get the best results by playing the songs back at 24/96, then recapturing from analog at 44.1/16? Is there any way to do this using pro-tools on a digidesign 002 (i.e. playback two 24/96 tracks while recording two 44.1/16 tracks?) Part of my problem is that I only have one piece of hardware that can record digitally, the 002. Is there any hardware you would recommend around $500 or less?

    Thanks again!
  9. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    unfortunately you can't do it on protools. You can look at other options like a dat machine, they go for real cheap nowadays. you can also look at something like the masterlink. maybe a stand alone CD recorder. You can find these things used for under $500. The key to doing it this way is the converters. The better the converters, the better result. Welcome to the world of never ending gear purchases. I like the masterlink as a tool to record and playback from, but I don't like the converters, some on the otherhand do.
  10. mixandmaster

    mixandmaster Active Member

    Here are my ideas for you to get your stuff sounding better...each one will probably get you incrementally "better", but "better" is a pretty subjective thing.

    First off, you should definitely going through some sort of dither, if nothing else use digidesign's Power Dither as your LAST LAST LAST plug-in. Set it to 16 bit. That will help some.

    I'm not sure about the 002's clock, but back when I had a home system on an Audiomedia III card, it would help ALOT if I clocked off an external converter without going out then "back in". The 888's used to suck, too. The 96 and 192 I/Os are much improved, but like I said, I'm not sure about the 002.

    But try the dithering plug-in and let us know how much it helps...if any!

    Maybe we should have a conversion "shoot-out" one of these days...take a 24bit/96KHz file and convert it down to 16/44.1 using different systems, then do a blind test. Would be interesting.
  11. mixandmaster

    mixandmaster Active Member

    a discussion on dither and pro tools is on page 480 of the latest manual I have...look for "dither and bounce to disk". Hope this helps. :cool:
  12. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    This would be interesting to do.
  13. mixandmaster

    mixandmaster Active Member

    I can easily do a ProTools HD conversion...maybe we should do two styles of music, maybe a heavier, rhythmic thing, and a dynamic acoustic thing...Anyone else?
  14. TrilliumSound

    TrilliumSound Active Member

    I find this to be very interesting too. :cool:
  15. ghellquist

    ghellquist Member

    I´ll offer to do Samplitude 7. Not much web space to put it up on though.

  16. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    ahhh, sound like another project is brewing.

    Let's see
    so far:
    samplitude 7
    protools HD
    apogee rosetta 200

    anyone else?
  17. soundfreely

    soundfreely Guest

    The software that I have is Sonar 4 PE and Wavelab 4. I really would not dare using either of them for SRC (fortunately, I have not ever had to SRC anything). Although, I am very interested in hearing the comparisons of the other gear. If anyone would like, I could do a conversion in both programs for the sake of comparison.

  18. TrilliumSound

    TrilliumSound Active Member

    Well since Rosetta and Samplitude is taken, I have a Masterlink here, so I could take it for this purpose.

  19. p0llen_p0ny

    p0llen_p0ny Guest

    I fear I will be laughed at for this but I have Izotope's Ozone with the MBIT+ dither. :oops: Call me nuts but I like it better than Apogee.
  20. beachhunt

    beachhunt Guest

    2 votes for MBIT+.... I'd still be interested in the hearing the shootout!

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