How Well Can You Hear Audio Quality?

RobySul

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Hi! Quite an interesting topic. I recently read that a study was conducted. NPR Music has prepared a test, "How well do you hear the audio quality?", in which listeners are asked to choose the best sound from three files of one song: MP3 with a bitrate of 128 kbit/s, 320 kbit /s, and uncompressed WAV (it has the clearest sound). I honestly never thought about it before. Probably because my passion for music is a hobby. But I'm trying really hard, and I already have a favorite app like https://convertr.org/audio-converter, and I can recommend it to you.
 
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Stickclick

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I make recordings with a DAW. I make multiple versions of the same mix at various resolution because I have to get the mp3 size below 1 MB to send it by cell phone. I can hear the difference between 320 K and 128 K or 48 K bitrates. but I could not hear a difference between the recordings on that npr web page.

Almost everyone that I know listens to music on their cell phone, probably the worst fidelity generally available.
 

Tornado

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Almost everyone that I know listens to music on their cell phone, probably the worst fidelity generally available.
I hate even sending people stuff to listen to now because I know they are just going to click the link on their cell phone and listen without any earphones, or at best play back through laptop speakers. People in general seem to care less about audio quality today than they used to, because it's just too convenient to listen through crap.
 

mattmalloy66

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When I was in high school they had some "expert" come in and do a hearing test of us band and choir members. One of the girls in the choir impressed the h*ll out of them. She had the ability to detect even the most subtle pitch changes, low volumes and things nobody else reacted to.
 
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Migelguero

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I agree, there is no point in an online hearing test, as the sound quality will be far from perfect. As a benchmark, the test offers uncompressed wav files, which is neat. I always download my favorite songs from Youtube via this wav converter coconvert.com. Nevertheless, you need not only a lossless audio file but something is capable of producing it at its fullest. So don't pay much attention to such tests, as various tests will show you different results. Only a small percentage of people has that perk of hearing subtle pitches and the lowest volumes.
 

Whitten

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Online? Yes, I think there are too many variables.
In my own studio I can hear the difference between mp3 and CD quality. MP3just sounds a bit lame, lacking in fidelity, not obvious, but I can hear it.
I work at 96khz/24bit because I can and it really doesn't inconvenience me one bit. I think CD quality at 44.1khz 16 bit is fine and hard to beat.
Whether I can hear something and you can't is not really a gold standard to base anything on. It proves nothing.
My work colleague who is an experienced audio engineer regularly hears issues I can't hear. He hears problems on channels in the studio sometimes, feint noise on an audio recording I can't hear. He is always proved right too. His hearing, or sensitivity to audio, is FAR superior to mine.
 

Tarkus

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Interesting topic.

HearingTest.jpeg


btw. it's not 50/50 chance. And you can't train yourself (or call it fooling your results) because if you repeat, in each new test the order of answers is randomized.

Anyway, it's a shame, how all 'visual consume content' gains in quality quite substancially (displays, monitors, TVs), while the 'audio consume content' just drops down and nobody cares. But I can notice it on myself. If I find something 'inspirational' through DFO members (thanks to all of you), of course I will listen to it 'on the spot' via youtube or whatever, using notebook speakers. So, I'm part of this.
 
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HoorayGuy

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I can tell a difference between 128kbps & 320kbps & up, but, I cannot tell a difference between 320kbps and full rez. :dontknow: My music collection is in 500kbps ogg vorbis.
 


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