Dr. AIX's POSTS — 14 September 2015

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Today would have been my father’s 91st birthday…but cancer cut his life very short. He didn’t make it to half that age. I miss him.

As you might imagine, I get a lot of emails. I read all of the comments written on this website. Some of them take me to task for an opinion I’ve expressed and they disagree with or a factual mistake that I’ve made in a post…and some of them are so encouraging that they make all of the effort worth it. Lately, I’ve been hammered pretty hard by those that would have you believe that I’m making this stuff up. I’m not. There are influential people that would rather I stop trying to inject some transparency into the whole subject of high-resolution audio/music. They just don’t have the capacity to listen…it’s “bad for commerce”. I was taught by my father a very long time ago to tell the truth. That’s what I’ve been doing….in over 1000 posts now! And it’s what I will continue to do.

A couple of readers and future supporters of the Kickstarter campaign wrote the following:

“Hello Mark,
 
I read all your posts from about one year and a half. I think you do an wonderful job for all the music lovers. I love the music and I tried to complete an audio system for my own at home. Your posts helped me for the first steps into high resolution music. I don’t know much about the theoretical part of the sound and music, but I know what I hear. So, you are perfectly right about the high-res music and about the numbers which characterise it. I downloaded a lot of files and I have more than 150 cds. I finally understood the differences with your help, of course. Some of these files are from AIX Records or iTrax and I admit that these are the best. I intend to download also the Guitar Noir – Laurence Juber.

I’m looking forward for that Music and Audio Guide and I think that the first 30 sec from the video are very good. It is a short presentation which ‘push’ the viewer to find out more about the subject. Well done! I think this guide will be a real success. – Mircea”


“Hi Mark I have been getting your emails now for quite a while and I want to encourage you that it is refreshing to get insight from yourself in what is and isn’t Hi Res Audio. I love music and I got a Sony Hi Res Audio player for my birthday this year and a voucher for to get £25 worth of Hi Res Audio tracks which I have done. The music I got were favourite tracks from my favourite albums which I have on CD and to be honest I have been really disappointed by them, the claim that these Hi Res Audio tracks will change the way you listen to music is really far fetched and untrue. It was only by reading your articles that I understood that it wasn’t my hearing that was a problem and what you said made sense so keep on doing what your doing Mark it is really appreciated by myself way over in Glasgow, Scotland. You are the only person in the Audio Articles that I read who is telling us the truth about Hi Res Audio, thanks for all your work and effort, here is my email address – xxxxxxxxxxx@xxx.com, all the best Donnie.”

First, I would like to thank these two readers and everyone that appreciates the my efforts to set things right. The fact is…I’m losing the battle. The marketing and spin machines are going to continue pushing the myth that is “high-resolution”.

I worked on the video again today and will post the final version tomorrow on the Music and Audio Guide website.

Forward this post to a friend and help us spread the word about HD-Audio Forward this post to a friend and help us spread the word about HD-Audio

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About Author

Dr. AIX

Mark Waldrep, aka Dr. AIX, has been producing and engineering music for over 40 years. He learned electronics as a teenager from his HAM radio father while learning to play the guitar. Mark received the first doctorate in music composition from UCLA in 1986 for a "binaural" electronic music composition. Other advanced degrees include an MS in computer science, an MFA/MA in music, BM in music and a BA in art. As an engineer and producer, Mark has worked on projects for the Rolling Stones, 311, Tool, KISS, Blink 182, Blues Traveler, Britney Spears, the San Francisco Symphony, The Dover Quartet, Willie Nelson, Paul Williams, The Allman Brothers, Bad Company and many more. Dr. Waldrep has been an innovator when it comes to multimedia and music. He created the first enhanced CDs in the 90s, the first DVD-Videos released in the U.S., the first web-connected DVD, the first DVD-Audio title, the first music Blu-ray disc and the first 3D Music Album. Additionally, he launched the first High Definition Music Download site in 2007 called iTrax.com. A frequency speaker at audio events, author of numerous articles, Dr. Waldrep is currently writing a book on the production and reproduction of high-end music called, "High-End Audio: A Practical Guide to Production and Playback". The book should be completed in the fall of 2013.

(13) Readers Comments

  1. Dr. Waldrep,
    I don’t know if you remember me, or not, but I am the guy who wanted to help with the marketing of your marvelous recordings and couldn’t make it to the tour session of your studio. I have a serious liver condition that was a gift from when I volunteered for the military in 1970 and made it through the 4 years honorably. You remember the times when so many of our generation ran from the military. The disease almost killed me twice but with the VA’s help I will make it now. I had a successful career in consulting and sales for the C.N.C. machine tool industry and it would have been easy for me to do your marketing successfully. I so needed to be involved in something that I believe in and it had nothing to do with money. I have a long music and tech history including my mother who was one of 400 women in the U.S. Navy during WW II and she led the Naval choir etc. I have learned a lot about audio from you. I appreciate your cynical sense of humor and honesty and know that you are “the real meal deal” which is so out of place with the times today. F*** em. A man’s word is the most valuable characteristic the is. I read your letter ever day and have learned A LOT from you and applied several of your points and knowledgeable observations successfully.
    Pleas keep up the good work and the sharing of same.
    Thank you,
    sincerely,
    Walt Prill
    2furrbles@gmail.com

    • Walt…of course I remember our exchanges and I’ve thought about getting in touch more than once about your offer to help. I’m so glad that you reached out again. Life is full of challenges and it seems you’ve had your share. I’m reeling these past few days due to an onslaught of negative communications from various organizations and their insistence on moving forward regardless of the accuracy, honestly, and transparency. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that those with a different agenda would work so actively to silence me.

  2. Hi Mark, I just wanted to tell you how much I look forward to reading your almost daily posts, and how refreshing it is to read an opinion that is based on real experience. It makes me wish I lived close enough to take one of your classes at Cal State. You mentioned the Philips Golden Ears program, which is great for anyone interested in recording (I made it to Silver Ears but now struggling with frequency bumps and cuts) Great exercise for us home recording fans. I look forward to participating in the Kickstarter campaign whenever that begins. It is better to take the time to get it right, than to beat yourself up for not having done a better job to start. Thanks again for answering my questions at the California Audio Show last month in Millbrae – you were very patient and understanding with everyone who asked for your advice. Lastly, I wanted to say thanks for mentioning your father in this post – I don’t know why, other than it reminds me of how fortunate I have been to have had great parents.

    • Thanks Bruce!

  3. Please keep up the good work. You are truly a voice in the wilderness of misinformation. Even though it may seem that you are losing the battle, I don’t think that in the long run you are. “The truth is out there” as long as those who know what they are talking about express it. As you know, it’s a small minority of listeners who actually know what high resolution sounds like. So we can’t expect the average listener to EVER truly understand the real issues. Your voice will hlep that small minority in it’s belief in the highest quality of musical reproduction.

    • Thanks Stewart…I appreciate the support.

  4. Dear Dr. AIX,

    I felt the need and the urge to iterate that I thoroughly enjoy and appreciate your efforts and contribution to high resolution audio and music. We might be in the silent minority but let’s not forget that progress in all human endeavors happen over time. Furthermore resistance to change and even scientific truth have always been the case in the history of mankind. I think it is only natural to face the same in partially subjective hobbies like audio and music. Hence indisputable facts and scientific measurements may be subject to unfounded and opinionated criticism.

    Mass market audio products have always won the marketing battle in the past and will likely do so in the foreseeable future as well. We form the lucky niche segment that truly enjoy what real high resolution audio has to offer so we should cherish and enjoy this privilege. I for one can attest that people like yourself make this possible for us in the niche segment and I appreciate your efforts wholeheartedly.

    I also sincerely wish you the best of luck in your new Kickstarter campaign.

    Best Regards,
    Dr. Okan Geray

  5. “The fact is…I’m losing the battle. The marketing and spin machines are going to continue pushing the myth that is “high-resolution”.

    Mark, I don’t think you can figure a winning or losing factor into telling the truth. The spin machines are in it for the money and the war machine behind them is huge. The market that is high end audio today is so full of hucksters and snake oil peddlers it’s shameful. I can’t believe the honest pursuit of better sounding music reproduction that I entered into 50 years ago has become what it is today.
    Just keep on making the best recordings you can and continue telling the truth to the public. When you get up in the morning and look in the mirror your father will be looking back at you with the smile of pride.

  6. It was ever thus so, no chance of beating the marketing boys selling the kings new clothes. Truth, you can’t handle the truth. I can sort of see how the music industry have missed out on revenue with the coming of the digital age and you exposing their errrrm lies will paint a large target on your back. As before, just keep promoting your true hi res music and leave them to their own lies.

  7. Count me among those who appreciate that you speak your mind and tell the truth about hi-res despite the big commercial spin machine.

    Years ago when hi-res downloads came to market, I bought several advertised as 96/24 that were my CD favorites like Eric Clapton’s Slowhand. But I couldn’t hear a difference between the hi-res and CD versions. I couldn’t figure out why, but I trust my ears, so I quit buying hi-res downloads and adopted a wait-and-see attitude.

    Then I read your posts which taught me why I hadn’t heard a difference. I read the Audiophile mags and websites regularly but you are the only one that provided an explanation. So thanks.

    Phil_C

    • Thanks Phil,

  8. It’s just a thought
    But the word has come too late
    That a bad idea will take
    Just about a lifetime to explain,
    And don’t you see,
    Good one’s gonna be much longer;
    Who’s gonna wait, just to see?
    John Fogerty

  9. Dear Dr AIX:
    I am not an audiophile, I am just a person who likes enjoy listen music, good music, and I guess I’m doing. I don’t have the knowledge enough to judge a record. I like it or not. Beyond all of this I believe that your opinion enrichment my knowledge. More if you say the truth. You know, always exist people that don’t want to listen the truth or listen the things that they don’t want to listen. I started reading your comments a few weeks ago and I find them interesting. Please continue on what you are doing. It is your opinion and we have to respect it. We have the right to accept it or not.
    Thank you for your effort.
    Have a nice day.
    From the very south of America,

    Alex

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