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.

15 thoughts on “The Continuing Myth of DSD

  • November 14, 2014 at 10:57 am
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    Hi, Mark –

    Thanks for sharing the white paper. Unfortunately, it’s a rather unprofessional document, one that’s badly in need of editing–especially the paper’s completely incorrect use of apostrophes.

    Also, thank you for a great blog!

    Best regards,
    Brian

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    • November 14, 2014 at 11:08 am
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      Brian…I’m willing to give the authors a break writing in English. They are from the Netherlands and are engineers not writers…the information and message is clear. I shutter to think what would happen if I had to write a paper in another language.

      Reply
  • November 14, 2014 at 2:21 pm
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    I really am totally over this entire high resolution nonsense altogether now. We are being fed so much BS at all levels and from all and sundry, that I simply want to go back to buying CDs again.

    Just about anything from the last decade sounds like crap because of poor recording/engineering/mastering, regardless of the resolution being put forth.

    Simply give me a really well recorded/engineered/mastered CD and it is happy days, all the other nonsense is just that, nonsense.

    I think also that nine times out of ten when we do get a good sounding high res file it is good for the simple reason that it has not been messed with in terms of dynamics etc, not necessarily because it is high resolution!

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    • November 14, 2014 at 2:44 pm
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      I think I’m with you on this. The problem is actually up stream from the delivery platform. Still…I’m stuck on surround and CDs just can’t do that.

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    • November 14, 2014 at 6:48 pm
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      Jazz At The Pawn Shop is just about to celebrate it’s 40th birthday and it sounds better than 99% of everything recorded since. It’s more about microphone technique than just about anything else.
      Marks recordings sound amazing because he uses good technique combined with SOTA equipment.

      Reply
    • January 24, 2017 at 11:06 am
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      I agree on you and with this posting (The Continuing Myth of DSD). This could call “The Continuing Myth of HiRes…”. I’m getting backing to CD’s also. I won’t pay high prices for SACDs or DSDs, when the most important thing of the ring is the recording/mastering of audio.

      Reply
  • November 14, 2014 at 2:34 pm
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    Mark,
    I sense a lot of stress in your post, don’t let them get to you, your health is more important. As I added to yesterdays blog, its all about who can spent the most $ on PR. 24/192 is all we need, probably more. But it’s old news and the only way to sell new software/hardware is for those in the business to make more $ is to spend a lot convincing consumers that there is newer-better tech that has to be bought into.
    Hard to oout market Sony and it’s associates.

    Reply
    • November 14, 2014 at 2:45 pm
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      Thanks Sal, I’m back to my running…8 miles tomorrow morning…so I’m thinking I’m healthy. The power is in others hands but it still bugs me.

      Reply
  • January 30, 2017 at 9:12 pm
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    Alright, l’ll Tell What Is Fact. I Own A DA-3000 AND THE ONLY FORMAT THAT ARCHIVES VINYL INDISTINGUISHABLE FROM THE RECORD, IS DSD.

    Buy or borrow one, “hear for yourself”

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    • January 31, 2017 at 11:37 am
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      Thanks for the comment. You’re certainly welcome to enjoy your DSD transferred vinyl LPs. And yes, I’ve have heard it and compared it to 96 kHz/24-bit PCM. But because vinyl LPs are standard-resolution media full of distortion and noise, there was no difference. In fact, a CD can adequately capture most vinyl without loss. DSD is a highly flawed technology and unusable for most production purposes. As a professional audio engineer AND audiophile, I wouldn’t record or distribute with DSD. Sony was providing the equipment for FREE back in the early days of SACD — after researching it, I passed.

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      • December 3, 2018 at 7:46 pm
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        You missed the point ENTIRELY. Music, noise, distortion, whatever. Recorded in PCM, the source IS DISTINGUISHABLE from the recording. The same is not true for DSD. If you actually did try to RECORD the same source… lets call it the “analog master tape” in PCM, and couldn’t here a difference… then yes, 44.1 will serve you well. No point in “digitally recording” a digital source. If you’re one of those that insists digital (a numerical representation of reality) trumps analog, you’re fighting against the only format that offers any hope for your argument. Quad DSD could be the final word.

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        • December 7, 2018 at 4:07 pm
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          You’re certainly entitled to your opinion…personal tastes trump technical realities every time. DSD is a highly flawed method of producing high-end audio recordings. The ultrasonic noise and lack of tools make it unusable in most recording situations. If these formats sounded so different, why did a rigorous study determine that listeners couldn’t distinguish between them. I’ll stick with the best digital encoding scheme yet devised…PCM.

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      • July 19, 2019 at 8:27 pm
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        What an obvious paid shill.
        CD can capture the resolution of Vinyl my ass.

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        • July 21, 2019 at 7:50 am
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          Actually, CD exceeds the resolution of any analog format including analog tape and vinyl LPs. That fact is undeniable but obviously uncomfortable for those who prefer the “sound” of vinyl. I’d be curious who you think is paying me to state realities. It’s time to study the subject and recognize that dynamic range, frequency response, distortion, speed fluctuations, etc are all better with PCM digital.

          Reply

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