Very interesting thread and would like to comment on a few topics, as I want too consolidate my music from various sources for a long term, space saving way for the broadest compatibilty on all my MD units. I have home and portable units and a few Net-MD anda Hi-MD unit.
From what I have read so far, I can only give my opinion, and I am willing to be corrected when I am wrong. But there seems to be a "hole" that needs to be filled in. There are so many factors that haven't been addressed, such as what happens to all the conversions affecting the ATRAC scheme. How does the end result sound noticebly different due to all the "molestation" of the bits as it travels from the source to the end product. Does the psycoacoustic properties alter that much and why?
We all are aware that any time you convert, no matter how meticulously you are, something does happen. This we know. We all seek out the answer. But nothing so far has been mentioned about all the factors involved. There are so many ways things can go awry. Am I wrong on bringing up this topic? Is something not being addressed?
I do, however, acknowledge the tests so far as valid. The results state that. I'd like to see more testing done. I am curious as to further results.
So far I have been happy transferring directly to my home unit using LP2 via optical digital input, as this is the most compatible with "decent" sound quality and some space saving to boot.
P.S. When I do transfer using iTunes [MP3] I always set the IMPORT SETTINGS as in the attachment. I find a great deal of difference between NORMAL and JOINT in the "stereo mode". I have also imported at 256 and then converted to 128 (2:1 ratio) while saving to iTunes and it sounds better than a straight conversion to 128. Hmmmm.....
I have not enough experience about SonicStage at all to comment, but am taking in all to better my understanding. I use a Mac and so far it's not feasible to even think about that at this point. iTunes Import Settings.tiff