Audio Format: MLP Lossless Stereo V Digital Remaster.

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mawnansmiff

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Having just bought a newly released Hawkwind boxed set (Warrior On The Edge Of Time) with five discs I am a little flummoxed by the DVD Audio disc that is included. On that one disc one has no fewer than five audio options...
MLP lossless 5.1 surround sound.
MLP lossless stereo.
DTS 96/24 5.1 surround sound.
Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound.
Original stereo master (96KHz 24 bit).
...my query is what exactly is MLP lossless stereo and how does it differ from a 'regular' digital remaster?
Do I need to make specific selections on my amp (Yamaha RX V14000RDS) to get the best from this version of the album? The amp itself has a plethora of options/settings but I'm just not sure what setting I should be looking for to hear what I am supposed to be hearing.
Any advice would be most welcome as usual :puffy:
Regards,
Jay.

 

bigpond

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MLP is the baseline format for playing audio CD's through a DVD player. Everything beyond the original master is imho just an attempt to grab a piece of the licensing pie.

 

mawnansmiff

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Cheers BP, I'm actually using a Marantz SACD player (which will play pretty much anything with a hole in it), does that make a difference?
From what you're saying I gather there is no difference twixt MLP lossless and the original master...is this correct?
Regards,
Jay.

 

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ssjones

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Lossless Flac files are much larger in size than an MP3. Is MLP similar to a FLAC? An older player might not play a lossless file. (My android usually has to convert them before playing)

 

jpmcwjr

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Does the Marantz allow you to choose what format to play on a given disc? If so, your ears would be a good guide. I've not heard of a machine allowing choice of formats, but I'm not current on DVD/BRD players.

 

mawnansmiff

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"Does the Marantz allow you to choose what format to play on a given disc?"
John, the Marantz just plays whatever is put on the tray, the options or selections are made via the TV. Though it's a DVD it is a DVD Audio disc so has no actual video on it, just audio, and an awful lot more audio than a CD could handle!
All that comes up on the screen is...
MLP lossless 5.1 surround sound.
MLP lossless stereo.
DTS 96/24 5.1 surround sound.
Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound.
Original stereo master (96KHz 24 bit).
...and one selects from there.
Hope this clarifies matters.
Regards,
Jay.

 

deathmetal

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Jul 21, 2015
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Unlike perceptual or "lossy" compression technologies, MLP Lossless makes no alterations to the final decoded signal. Rather, it simply packs the audio data more efficiently for easier transmission.
https://www.dolby.com/us/en/technologies/mlp-lossless.html
Ah, so the corporates have found an equivalent to FLAC. @ssjones, I think you are correct on this one. Lossless generally means the same thing that FLAC does: tokenizing silence instead of representing it linearly.
I would just use FLAC. Standards are a good thing, when not under the command of retards (W3 group, I'm looking at you).

 

mawnansmiff

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Thanks for that link Brett, this seems to answer my query...
MLP Lossless, an audio compression technology for DVD audio, delivers stereo and multichannel sound that exceeds conventional CD audio quality.
Exceptional Fidelity for the Best Music.
DVD-Audio takes your home audio system up a notch with sound quality that exceeds what's possible on conventional CDs. By combining DVD technology with MLP Lossless audio coding from Dolby, DVD-Audio discs can deliver music with full 5.1-channel surround sound and exceptional fidelity.
Unlike perceptual or "lossy" compression technologies, MLP Lossless makes no alterations to the final decoded signal. Rather, it simply packs the audio data more efficiently for easier transmission.
On the receiving end, MLP Lossless unpacks easily, so the original signal can be enjoyed with bit-for-bit accuracy. That means you hear the performance exactly as its creator intended.
While all DVD-Audio players are equipped with MLP Lossless decoding, its use on the discs themselves depends on the producer's discretion.

What a wonderful resource this forum is :puffy:
Regards,
Jay.

 

toobfreak

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Dec 19, 2016
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Play them in whatever formats you can and you will likely hear no difference at all. Lossless simply means lack of compression algorithm but the whole point of the compression types is to use psychological shaping to throw out the information your ear won't likely miss anyway.
You can immediately forget about all of the 5.1 channel encoding schemes as trash (my opinion) because the original recording didn't have them so that is just crap they put in for people more interested in surround effects than faithfulness of audio.
24 bit resolution should be adequate to approach the original analog reproduction, so I would use that. If you can play the MLP, see if you can hear any difference. Doubtful.
Chances are excellent that any differences if there at all will be swamped out by upstream components anyway.

 

mawnansmiff

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Toob, I had a feeling you would lean towards straight stereo and there's nothing wrong in that for general music listening, I rarely use anything other than direct stereo myself.
However, had you ever been to a Hawkwind concert you would know that they use a very unusual sound system that projects certain sounds in certain directions so you almost get a 3D sound if that makes sense. Therefore I am hoping that the DVD-A included in this set will replicate as best as possible the 'effects' that they utilise. My only concern is that the original recording was an analogue studio recording and not a live one so presumably would only have been recorded in stereo anyway without any of the fancy directional sound effects.
Whatever, I shall play around with it tonight and see which of the versions I prefer.
Regards,
Jay.

 

toobfreak

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Obviously, the original recording was done in 2-track stereo. A word about stereo. I run stereo in my sound system and with it set up properly, I can get sound localization anywhere from near to far, from above me to below me, and anywhere from 90° to my left to 90° to my right. Maybe more. In other words, I am surrounded, engulfed in sound.
Just as you are up close at a live event. Live events are stereo or something close to it, and the acoustic of the space they are in (indirect/reflected sound). Not much else is really needed in a proper set up and even in my home theater I don't use 5.1 or any of that. It is artificial. At most, for movies I use a technology called SRS developed by Hughes that synthesizes surround from 2-channels (very effectively). That bit about pointing this speaker or that in different directions, that is done to get the proper coverage they need depending on the acoustic of the event. That is common. The same thing is accomplished during the recording and playback process by the use of phasing. More is accomplished by good sound engineering than these artificial processing techniques (never use "Hall", "Concert", or any of these other effects.).
The idea (if your goal is good audio) is to get out of the way so that you hear the original intent of the recording. Hi-Fi makes all recordings sound the same (to some degree of quality); good audio lets bad recordings sound bad and good recordings sound good. If your system is right at all, you will hear these differences.
If you can hear a difference between 96K sampled 24 bit resolution master and Meridian Lossless, first I would want to wonder WHY. That does not bode well for the effect of MLP. Second, congratulate yourself---- for to hear that, you have indeed a system of very rare transparency.

 

mawnansmiff

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Toob, when listening to direct stereo I just use my Eltax floorstanders and a pair of (gifted, they just needed the caps replacing) 1970's Celestion UL6 mounted near the ceiling. For the occasional surround (many options here including THX) I have Onkyo for my rears. This is only used for certain films.
Not top notch kit by any means but the sound is crystal clear and full range. I once listened to Dire Straits 'Brothers In Arms' on vinyl on a pal's system that cost many thousands of pounds and I swear, if you closed your eyes you might well have been in the studio, the sound was breathtaking. Mine is good but far from breathtaking.
But of course, horses for courses. I'm pretty pleased with my set up though I would like to upgrade the floorstanders at some point.
I read elsewhere about your own set up, that though impressive, I thought was rather too much but then of course if you like your music as recorded then you must go that route.
Regards,
Jay.

 
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