DVD-A is here!!!!

Discussion in 'Mastering' started by golli, Apr 15, 2004.

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  1. golli

    golli Active Member

    Apr 17, 2003

    This audio card is now $250.00 and will be even lower in just a few months.

    And an DVD-A authoring program called Disc Welder is $99.99 now

    And programs to mix 5.1 have been here for few years now, like Nuendo and Vegas.

    This is entry level gear of course(bedroom wh****ers) :roll: but it gets the job done.

    So, as far as I can see, DVD-A has an advantage over SACD, at this point.

    I would love to hear the Audiophiles, response, here on RO, to this.
  2. TeeME

    TeeME Guest


    If SACD's were (overall catalog) mastered properly to begin with, then SACD would be a very nice format for audiophiles (some love it even though the 3K is usually up too hot) and reference recordings.

    Nothing wrong with SACD's (DSD) as a format. What is wrong is the mastering generally sucks because of the rush to get a foothold out there for consumers.


    SACD "HYPE" mastering to show off the format. Uncalibrated mastering facilitys butchering the works. Rolloff on the bottom, 3K boost, noisy highs. Toto IV is the "WORST" example I know of and the diana Krall stuff reeks with sibilance, imbalance and just not attention to detail going on.

    Stones is pretty darn good, but I have albums that best them.

    DSOM was an abortion. Clipping, poor use of master, Alan Parsons saying "whole parts being left out", "he was not approached anyway" to be involved with it and his 4ch quad is most awesome. Just a clone of that would have been killer.

    And the multilayer redbooks on SACD do not use the same mastering of the hi rez layer. It is like, "listen to how shitty we can make redbook sound" (in many cases) and this is "our idea" of how the record should sound, all the while, the mastering engineers are not using the vintage of equipment to monitor the recordings and the results have inadaquencies.

    Well, DVD-A has been in my house but no one wants to pay extra for it, for 27 months. It is so cheap now (and compatable with non dvd-a players) that it would be just plain stupid for audiophiles to not embrace the format.

    Sony created SACD/DSD to also make the discs "write protected". Anyone with analog out can copy on in its glory (or non glory) anytime..to 24/192K or even microsofts 32/192K format or even to a meridian DSD recorder, all day long. it is not copy proof.

    I see exciting times for DVD-A

    Go get a Panasonic DVD-F85 or F87(HDCD TOO) Machine for your standalone playback. it is less than 150 bucks.

    PS, the audigy 2 is fully DVD-A compatable but I use a high end stand alone set of converters myself.

    99 dollars around town, fully compatable.

  3. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    Sep 12, 2002
    NYC New York
    Home Page:
    DVD-A is an excellent format and came about in response to SACD. Sony requires a licensing fee for SACD so DVD-A was developed to get around that. Sony also had to author all SACD releases, but I think that is beginning to change. I have the pioneer elite universal player and I have both DVD-A and SACD discs that i listen to. Both formats can sound excellent. I personally like the extra content that can go on DVD-A and the fact that we can author it without having to go to sony. Also the benifit of DVD-A is that we can use the gear we already own and don't have to re-equip to master it. There are many engineers out there doing nothing but remixing in 5.1 and they are crankin out 2-3 mixes a day to keep the cost down. Needless to say that many of the remixes aren't up to par compared with the original 2 track mixes. But there are some fine examples of both formats. I think Dark side of the moon is one of the finest examples of 5.1 mixing out there. I know they didn't include Alan Parsons but it's still an amazing job none the less. I also think Fleetwood mac's rumors sounds excellent too.
    It all depends on what the consumers go for and right now both aren't doing very well. In the beginning, both had a strong push. Sony is known to have incredible staying power in the format wars and who knows, maybe one of these days they may actually win one.
    I think it's great that companies are beginning to support low end DVD-A.
  4. TeeME

    TeeME Guest

    Good 2 page interview about Alans Feelings on the DSOM SACD can be found


  5. everett

    everett Guest

    SACD will win

    SACD is backward compat with the format that consumers already accept. Sony are already surreptiously introducing SACD (hybrid) on CD albums and joe consumer doesn't even know. When the time comes for Joe to buy a new walkman or new sitting-room/bedroom shelf player the salesman will push the SACD model because that's all he has in stock and will tell the consumer that he probably has SACD material already if he's purchased any CDs within the last 12 months. It's a no brainer marketing exercise. Technology and sound don't even figure in the equation. With
    DVD-A Joe is always going to be thinking why do I need 2 DVD players in my house, one for vido and another for audio. If he buys 2 players he wants one downstairs and one upstairs both playing video and audio.
    I think the DVD fraternity over extended themselves. The video spec already allows for 96K 24 bit audio within the video_TS. There was an opportunity years ago to improve the playback of digital audio all within a standard DVD player. If the marketing push had been on that instead of some higher esoteric 192k all the DVD video manufacturers would have ensured the audio side of the players put out true 96k 24 bit D/A instead of downsampling to 48K. A missed opportunity in my opinion. There would have been no question of consumer acceptance - the hardware is just 'there' it comes along with your DVD video player. Criticism of the sound quality? I doubt it. With 128K streamed MP3s everywhere in consumer land the entire DVD-A SACD is a joke. Having said that Sony have learnt the marketing lesson and are now introducing hybrid SACD software by stealth to make it the de facto norm in the market. With DVD-A software the consumer HAS to make a conscious decision to purchase it.
    Marketing will determine the outcome.

    Two years ago I was thinking of investing in DVD-A production equipment but the price Minnetonks wanted for DiscWelder put me off so I delayed hoping the price would come down. Ironically they now introduce a low cut version, Bronze, for $100 just at the point that the market balance is slipping away in favor of SACD. Once SACD landslides Minnetonka will be selling squat of their Discwelder and I suspect sales are already stagnating hence now after 3 years of being on the market we see the last ditch appearance of Discwelder Bronze. I'm glad I didn't make the investment. DVD-Audio just isn't going to be around. BetaMax/VHS all over again. Yuk!
  6. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    Sep 12, 2002
    NYC New York
    Home Page:
    good points. I think Sony may win this battle but might still loose the war. we'll see. Sony never ceases to amaze me at what lengths they'll go to. Hell they're still supporting the mini disk.
  7. TeeME

    TeeME Guest

    Points to ponder:

    1. Many SACD's are not hybrids. Well over 1000 of them out of 2000.

    2. A SACD only disc will not play in anything other than an SACD player.

    3. Hybrids will only play the low rez layer on a CD player.

    4. DVD-A discs also contain regular DVD audio tracks and will play in any DVD player.

    5. 90 Million DVD players have been sold worldwide in 2003

    5. All DVD players will play the regular CD's and hybrid SACD's.

    6. All DVD players audio tracks are 24 bit whether DVD-A or not.

    7. DVD's and DVD-A's can be burned by consumers affordably.

    8. SACD's cannot be burned by consumers or studios at all. They must be manufactured as it is not a writable format.

    9. DVD's and DVD-A's on average retail price is 20% to 30% below that of SACD.

    10. Of the several hundred SACD's I own, 9 of them sound "great" and over 70% of them are bested by their vinyl counterpart due to poor mastering.

    11. All my DVD-A's sound great.

    12. DVD-A allows for a digital output.

    13. SACD's do not have a digital output of the data stream.

    I have 3 DVD machines that are stand alone, 2 of which are DVD-A. The computer is DVD-A. I have two SACD machines. None of them will play any sort of DVD disc.

    Guess which format gets used more?

    I will give you a hint, the last SACD I bought I returned because the TOC would not read. The replacement would not read either. Their is no problem with either of my SACD machines.

    I have had zero failure with DVD, DVD-A I have had to return 27 different discs and do a search on "cracks in the spindle hole of sacd" or some simalar search. Many of my SACD's have cracks in them from normal handling, none of my DVD, DVD-A have.
  8. golli

    golli Active Member

    Apr 17, 2003
    After reading your posts, guys I'm still sure that DVD-A is about to win the war. Everett makes some good points but I dont share his view on the hardware part.

    I'm convinced that is exactly what people would rather have. I would anyway. I would stay away from having all kinds of "players" around the house, none of them compatible with each other, like a virus.

    And furthermore, there are so many more people, using computers to play music, rather than investing on a deticated Hi-Fi system.
    Allmost all PC's/Mac's have a DVD drive in them nowaday's. So the only thing needed is a $150.00 to buy a PCI card and you're set.
    Therefore if you want to be able to listen to a high resolution audio, all around the house (and chances are there are PC's all around the house) you need to invest in two or more cards, which is sertanly many times cheaper than having many SACD units.
    I know that good speaker systems dont come with every PC but chances are, that with many of them are little Creative or Logitech 5.1 systems, that have been flying of the shelves last 5 years or so. They can, of corse, be used with SACD to.

    After posting this topic I did some more researching on these audio cards (sounblaster) and found out that I was'nt discovering anything :roll: . If you have a deticated PCI audio card in your system it would be extreemly likely that it is a Soundblaster.
    And if that has served well in your machine over the years, then why switch brands. I mean its all about the shortest way to reach your goal. For me, its a DVD-A Sounblaster and a semi good 5.1.
    Everything else would'nt pass my wife's inspection :)

    So true.

    Also, all that TeeME, said are my feelings exactly.

    I remain convinced that if these formats can't coexist, DVD-A is a clear winner. Espesially after knowing that only Sony can author SACD releases :shock: That just sounds like the Soviet Union all over again.
  9. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    Sep 12, 2002
    NYC New York
    Home Page:
    That's all fine and dandy for the average joe, but the average joe isn't buying hi res audio. The audiophile is. He doesn't mind plopping down a couple of grand for a good player that will play everything. Sacd has had better marketing to the audiophile and it's become the catch phrase in that market. SACD in beating out DVD-A in sales. Most of the hi res players in the audiophile shops are SACD. That is what they are looking for. At the very least, they'll get one that can play both. This is the market that is buying these titles. Not my mom.
  10. TeeME

    TeeME Guest

    Audiophiles seem to be coming around to a lot of changes as of late.

    More points:

    The SA-XR45 Panasonic digital receiver has been accepted by the audiophile community as having better sound than many boutique amplifers costing 15 times more.


    The Toshiba DVD 3950 is rapidly becoming the giant killer for redbook playback. 60 dollars. Scroll down for links and threads.


    Redbook has a new resurgance amongst hard core audiophiles since their are hundreds of thousands of titles. DVD-A being the format that is high rez and recordable, is gaining fast momentum.

    6 months ago, I would say SACD. In light of how terrible the mastering has gotten on SACD's, it is no longer the choice for the audiophile.


    More manipulation. Be certain to read that link. THIS IS THE PROBLEM!!!!

    The releases I would like to hear are EUROPE ONLY...too many of them and many labels are deciding, SACD is too restricted these days. IF I can master to DVD-A and I do, I have clients that will go that direction if I throw it in for a very good price and I will.

    On a side note, I am not bashing the format SACD, I am unhappy with the mastering, the restrictions, the cost, and the arrogance that surrounds it.
  11. golli

    golli Active Member

    Apr 17, 2003
    Hmmmm....I would think that in order for a high res format to exist the average joe would have to get in on it. The music industry is all about cutting corners, these days to survive.
    If a mixer is producing 2-3, 5.1 mixes a day that IS cutting corners.
    So there is no gain in high res or 5.1 if its done in such a hurry.
    Are there really enough audiophiles in this world, to produce "deep pockets" to pay for releases in high res. I dont think so.
    So that means, me and my mom, will have to get in on the format.

    I am not biased in any way. The only investment I have made, so far, is to have a DVD drive in my PC around $50.

    I'm just saying how it looks to me. I could not care less who lands on top(as long as we get either one). It just seems to me that to get either formats up and running, the DVD-A is there. The fact that I can go and buy a SACD player, right now, does'nt mean that it is here. I've been looking over the internet (and I consider my self above average Googler), the cheapest SACD player I could find was $3.000 :shock: ( please inform me if I'm wrong on that one)

    Both SACD and DVD-A have been plagued by sillyness in marketing, since they came about. SACD by not involving suround, until recently and DVD-A on watermarking (wich is a content protection).

    But, again if either high res format are to have a future and songwriters/producers/musicians/etc.. want consumers to get a better picture of their creation, ME and my MOM will have to have means and the hardware to enjoy it.

    Until, of course we get faster internet conections and better ways to shrink and decode files, this is a valid discussion.
  12. TeeME

    TeeME Guest

    No watermarking of homemade DVD-A's :)

    You can get a good SACD player from Sony for about 200~500 bucks. Most of the lower priced stuff has the same quality chipsets but lesser power supplys and transports. Nowdays, Sonys offereings have regular DVD and SACD in the same machine. Look around, they are out there for your knowledge.

    My First SACD player was the Sony SACD-1 @5000 US Then I opted for the 777 which retailed for 3500 but oade brothers had it for 1500. A 50 lb beast of a machine. The the SCD-CE775 Sony SACD player became available for 179 at best buy. It retailed for 350 but they could not sell any of them since they had a total of 9 SACD's in stock. I grabbed that one and unloaded the SACD-1 as it was a good sale. Then the Panasonic DVD-F65 and DVD-F85 became available for great prices. The F-65 floor model for 60 dollars and the new F-85 for 140. Then the hoopla about the Toshiba 3950 grabbed my intrest, and I picked up 2 of them, for redbook (DVD Players) and they sound better on redbook than the Sonys. They upsample using 24/192K

    The Panasonic F-65 and F-85 blow away the Sonys on redbook and do flawless DVD's (pro scan_ and DVD-A's and stream the digital out as well at 24/192K...and they upsample the redbooks with their re-remaster features to highest redbook playback possible, not even different from the hard drive IMHO.

    So...the gambit on all this changes so fast that 6 months ago, it was not as it is now for the recording studio or the consumer. DVD-A decks for cars are being devloped by the dosens for CES 2005 to be shown.

    Me thinks...SACD novelty will be exceeded by DVD-A because of its "mainstreamability"
  13. golli

    golli Active Member

    Apr 17, 2003
    I'm not that great at googling :lol:
    That means they are well in the game. I stand corrected :oops:

    And the war goes on.

    Does this upsampling improove the sound.??

    BTW are those SACD players you mention, all surround??
  14. TeeME

    TeeME Guest

    What upsampling does is rearrange the filtering scheme as to not allow the brick wall nyquest filtering (ringing) to come into play, so the answer is YES, CD's sound better than ever.

    Yes, all SACD players being manufactured today play:

    SACD 2-bus
    SACD 5.1 mix

    SACD's will either be...(the discs)

    SACD 2-bus only
    SACD 2 mix and 5.1 only
    SACD 2-bus and redbook only
    SACD 2-bus, redbook and 5.1

    Since these are the formats available on SACD, you have to know what you are getting before you purchase, and sometime, it is not even labled.

    DVD labling is FAR more consistant and conspicuoius
  15. golli

    golli Active Member

    Apr 17, 2003
    Ok, check this out for me.


    And here is a link to a good article, a one mans opinion but a good reading:
  16. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    Sep 12, 2002
    NYC New York
    Home Page:
    I picked up a pioneer elite player for $350 brand new and plays all formats including mp3. The Technology is the same whether it's DVD-V, A, or sacd. No consumer players that I know of offer digital output of the hi rez. only the dolby digital or dts streams. things are changing but still the average joe is not buying. SACD is still outselling DVD-A by something like 5 to 1. the only people I know that own either format are audiophiles. At least the ones who actually know that they play hi rez and go out and purchase the discs. I know one person that had an SACD player but didn't know it. Players are cheap, you can get them for $179, granted they sound like dirt even if they do up sample. Labels were very hot on these formats but in the last year or two have cooled. They may heat up again once they get re organized. On the other hand DVD-V is where it's blown up.
    I personally like both formats. I have good and bad on both. Sony is below par on their product because they are just trying to crank out as much as they can. It's not so much of the mastering as it is the mixing. I mean they are crankin the stuff out trying to out product DVD-A. Both formats can really sound great, but it's only going to be as good as they people doing it. Give it time to develope and it can be great. If Sony were to give up their licensing on SACD, I think it could take over. I believe Sadie has created a SACD authoring system but the problem is delivering refs to clients. I have mastered a few DVD-A titles but not authored them. I like DVD-A not because of the sound but because I can use the gear I have. But I'm in the biz and not the average joe. the average joe has heard of SACD but doesn't know DVD-A from a hole in the wall. It's a tough call and that's why it's not successful. The real problem is not what best serves the music, it's what best serves the owners of the music. The owners of the music make gear. The music is what they use to sell gear. The problem is that they sold CD to well to the consumer. They sold it as the ultimate medium, you can't get better than digital. They see no need to have better digital, digital is digital and it's the best. most of the people that I know in NYC download mp3's rather than buy the Cd. everyone here has an ipod and this is their main medium for listening to music whether is be at home, car, or on the go. I spend more money on better equipment and they listen to it on an ipod. The supply is there but the demand isn't.
  17. TeeME

    TeeME Guest

    this just in


    DVD-Audio Sales Five Times that of SACD Says RIAA Survey
    DVD-Audio sales doubled in 2003 and are more than five times that of SACD, according to an RIAA survey – that is the news from the DVD-Audio council circulated today:

    In a world where a drop in music sales is the expected norm, DVD-Audio, the leading high-resolution audio format, bucked the trend, more than doubling its sales in 2003, according to the RIAA’s 2003 consumer survey released recently.

    DVD-Audio offers surround sound and stereo along with images, lyrics, videos and other extras, and is compatible with existing DVD-Video players, delivering the highest level of quality on DVD-Audio/Video players.

    The RIAA survey concludes that DVD-Audio sales in 2003 were over five times the level of competing high-resolution audio disc formats, with a 2.7% market share – up from 1.3% in 2002 – in comparison to SACD’s 0.5%.

    John Trickett President of the DVD Audio Council said “The growth in DVD-Audio demonstrates that the format is being rapidly adopted and poised to move into mainstream music sales. This is clearly a product that the consumer wants to buy. The increasing number of titles being released by many labels including releases by superstar artists such as Britney Spears, R. Kelly, Sting, The Who and Neil Young will further help the development of music in DVD Audio. We are very excited about the future.”

    The RIAA survey also showed continued growth in sales to older consumers, with 26.6% made by buyers 45 years old and up, 35+ purchasers making up 47.8% of all sales. “They are one of the two primary markets for DVD-Audio,” said Trickett. “DVD-Audio is also becoming popular among younger consumers for the added-value music videos, artist commentaries and web links that are often found on the discs – a market segment where conventional music sales are falling.”
  18. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    Sep 12, 2002
    NYC New York
    Home Page:
    That's great news. Still, if I walk into circuit city and look at the systems, the only one I see is SACD. But I think they even stopped carrying that. I would love to see DVD-A dominate and take over and be in every house. I just don't see it now. I also think that with these new higher format DVD's that are going to come out in the next few years may even bring another audio format. I feel that if DVD-A or SACD has a chance to make it, the manufactures are going to have to make it standard in all DVD players. Once that happens then we will see a turn. I have 2 universal players so I know it's possible to build a unit that will play back everything. We are just now beginning to see titles that are really worth getting a system to play it back on. I have maybe 4 now that I love to listen to and benifit from this hi rez medium. The rest I can live without.
  19. TeeME

    TeeME Guest

    My Best Buy carries 9 different DVD-A machines and one SACD machine. I just left there. The DVD-A selection VS the SACD (discs) look about the same. Kinda lame, no more than 200 titles each. I get my dvd-a discs on line or just make my own.
  20. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    Sep 12, 2002
    NYC New York
    Home Page:
    I need to find a new junk retailer to hang out at.

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