For the past couple of years the consumer and professional audio markets have promoted the benefits of high-resolution audio.
A newly released study conducted by the binaural and HD video company ImmersAV Technology suggests the dynamic range and bandwidth advantages that are associated with high-resolution audio, “do not offer any perception benefits beyond those of standard CD.”
The founding partners of ImmersAV Technology, Robert Schulein and Dr. Dan Mapes-Riordan, have recently released three test files that audio enthusiasts can use to judge these claims. ImmersAV Techonology says the details of the tests can be found in a YouTube video it produced, and it points out that initial tests done at the 139th Audio Engineering Society (AES) Convention in New York and as part of an AES demonstration it held in Chicago found little differences in certain areas of comparison when examining the differences between CD-quality audio and high-resolution audio.
“We welcome interested individuals to evaluate these tests and offer comments,” says Schulein. “We are not saying that there are no benefits to high-resolution audio, however they do not appear to lie in these areas. Other factors such as anti-aliasing and anti-imaging filters may however have a perceptible influence on differences heard by some. These are areas of ImmersAV's ongoing research.”
Mapes-Riordan adds the production side of the music creation processs could benefit the most from the use of advanced technologies such as increased bit rates and higher frequency sampling.
“Audio recording, editing and mastering can indeed benefit from sampling rates and bit depth beyond those of the CD due to the DSP processes used,” he theorizes. “However, once the production has been completed a standard format CD will offer the bandwidth and dynamic range needed to enjoy these aspects of the production.”