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Perceived Quality of Digital Audio Recordings

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In addressing my topic, I enter into an area more controversial than religion, sex, or politics. For the 30 years that I have been involved in recording there have been, with few exceptions, a separation of those that design and manufacture recording equipment from those that use this recording equipment. In the past, sonic improvements were often made by the user, not by the designer. The greatly increased complexity of digital recording increases the need for developing cooperation between the designers and the users. The controversy of digital recording stems from the impression of many that high performance analog recorders are still superior for the storage of the sum total of musical information than any of the digital systems currently available. The wide acceptance of compact disc in the home, coupled with the more demise of the 110 year old phonograph for home use, requires that the dedicated engineer strive to improve our existing digital format so that it will deliver music that is deemed accessible to all ears. Only then should the controversy come to its proper end.

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AES - Audio Engineering Society