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MDietrich last won the day on July 26 2014

MDietrich had the most liked content!


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  • Sony Products I Own
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  • ATRAC Devices
    Sony NW-HD 5, Sony NW-A 1000, Sony D-NE1
  • Headphones
    Sennheiser HD-600, HD-558 modded, HD-448, HD-250 Linear, Koss PortaPro
  • Amplification
    ASUS Xonar Essence STX, FiiO X3, FiiO E07K, FiiO E06, Sony STR-DB 830
  • Minidisc units
    MDS-JE 530, MZ-1, MZ-R 30, MZ-R 35, MZ-R 50, 2 x MZ-R 55, MZ-R 37, 2x MZ-R 90/91, MZ-R 700, 2x MZ-R 900, MZ-R 909, MZ-R 501, MZ-N 707, MZ-N 510, Sharp MD-MT180, Sharp MD-MT270, Sony MZ-E 30, Sony MZ-E 25, Sony MZ-E 33, Sony MZ-E 60, Audiophase MDP-1

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  1. The R909 is more fragile than the R900. I have them both and I´m afraid they all aren´t the most robust units. The last indestructible unit was the R90/91 IMO.
  2. The problem of the bending casing was exaggerated IMO. The MZ-R 50 bends too if you push the two buttons beside the display with too much force. I have yet to find reliability problems for R 55 models. And you´re right: the R 55 is beautiful.
  3. No one should be 'coerced' into buying MD related stuff for inflated prices. For Christ's sake, this technology simply isn´t worth that much money. And it certainly isn´t suitable for promoting a sale on a forum that mainly deals with information. So I´ve voted for the last option.
  4. "The market" determines their worth? Well, "the market" usually has no idea about quality - because in this case it consists of a few dumb people believing in a myth. The TDK significantly colours the sound and is far away from the original sound. But I´ll give you advice regarding your "market": you should extend shipping to Europe. Here in Germany for example, Sharp's last MD recorders with 1-bit technology are highly sought items, fetching rather extreme prices (and they too are not worth their money). The same goes for any HiMD device and the accompanying HiMDs. Happy? If so, stop using this forum to extract information on how to exploit others!
  5. They are. And not worth it. Haven´t ever heard the md2000 but I cannot say anything good about the tdk. You answered this yourself with the question
  6. Nope, sadly I can´t. I´d wonder if you actually found something as no one ever bothered to measure the ATRAC encoding (doesn´t make too much sense anyway since it´s a psychoacoustic algorithm). The main resarch regarding ATRAC happened before the net took hold; secondly, the guys that were doing all the measurements were audio magazines. But they weren´t measuring everything. I didn´t even know that the phase error existed before I measured it myself. Furthermore, not every unit is perfect when it comes to playback. My recently acquired MDS-JE 530 for instance produces a phase error on the optical output (but not on the analogue output) regardless of the used ATRAC version. On the other hand, recordings made with the 530 are perfect and measure superior to recordings made on a portable recorder. So the 530 is a well performing recorder but a bad playback device when used digitally. And our Kenwood DM-5090 is a mediocre recorder (thanks to its ATRAC 4.0) but a superior player (digitally). Optical output = perfect, analogue output = bad (due to a frequency error). Regarding your question (finally): I would think that the ATRAC versions built into the HiMD recorders are the same as the ones used in pre-HiMD portable devices. Namely portable ATRAC DSP Type-S. But I won´t really find out until I buy a HiMD device. That won´t happen because the prices are way too much inflated right now and because I´m not interested in them. Sorry for writing this much!
  7. I offer another alternative: keep it. I have kept every - I repeat: every - little recorder I acquired on eBay, even the ones I used for spareparts. I do this because I love them and not because I want to trade them. EDIT: I was lying. I threw away a broken Audiophase MDP-1 and a broken MZ-R 501, both completely beaten up. I´d sell some of my portable CD players though. The ones I don´t like. Though I´d rather give them away for free. Which creates the situation that in the end they won´t turn up on eBay or anywhere else. Correct. 'Nuff said.
  8. No, they wouldn´t have advertised this. Almost no one I knew / still know cared for the ATRAC version on pre-recorded MDs. When ATRAC 3.5 came out on the MDS-JA 3 ES, Sony produced a pre-recorded WideBitStream MD. It was only to show off the 20 bit capability of the WideBitStream feature and wasn´t available anywhere. There was only one publication that ever pictured it (German STEREO magazine). To my knowledge, no other pre-recorded WideBitStream MD has ever been produced - though it´s very likely to say that Sony from 1995 on used ATRAC 3.5 for pre-recorded MDs and continued to implement newer ATRAC versions in the years to come. And I refuse to judge the sound quality of those two MDs I mentioned as you will use that information only to sell your overpriced stuff.
  9. Yes, I got it - but it doesn´t change the fact that it´s still stupid to think that one recorder would be better suited for copying than another. Do you have proof? You can´t take the sound as proof, it´s completely subjective. You need measurements and compare an ATRAC version of a professional pressing plant encoder to a home encoder. And I highly doubt that Sony developed the home version while they left the pressing plant version at ATRAC 3. For all of you who want to compare a home recording from CD to a pre-recorded MD: be careful. They sometimes sound different. Not because of ATRAC but because they were mastered differently. Just two examples: 'Dangerous' from Michael Jackson and 'Love Deluxe' from Sade. BTW, this is something I can measure.
  10. Do you have any idea what we were talking about? Do you have any idea what you are talking about?
  11. 1. The frequency cutoff doesn´t enhance the bass. For us humans it´s close to impossible to hear frequencies beyond 15,5 kHz and once you reach a certain age you cannot even hear beyond, for example, 12 kHz. This cutoff is very unlike an EQ where you mute treble which in turn 'amplifies' (that´s how you perceive it) those frequencies that are left. 2. The encodings for pre-recorded albums are completely different to those produced by portable or home decks. With encodings done on portable or stationary decks, the cutoff depends very much on the frequency content. If the level of anything above 15,5 kHz is very loud, ATRAC will try to keep it. Once it falls below a certain level, it might be erased completely. If the ATRAC encoder doesn´t reserve datarate for those frequencies it can be used for frequencies from 0 to 15,5 kHz. On pre-recorded MDs since, I don´t know, 1996 or so, the frequency fluctuates between 17,5 & 18,5 kHz. On pre-recorded MDs released at a later date, the cutoff is at roughly 19 kHz and doesn´t fluctuate. But apart from the very first MDs I´ve never seen a 15,5 kHz cutoff.
  12. Yeah, you did The first two ATRAC versions indeed had a cutoff at 15,5 kHz. But since ATRAC 3 the encoder tries to keep frequencies above 15,5 kHz. The frequency band from 15,5 to 22,05 kHz is just the last frequency band ATRAC tries to encode. The first ATRAC versions couldn´t handle it (not even on pre-recorded MDs) and therefore erased it entirely. But ATRAC 3, 4, 4.5 and Type-R/S try to keep as much as possible without hurting the rest.
  13. Recently I bought an MDS-JE 530. I already owned that model 15 years ago but sold it some years later. Now I own it again and it has the same encoding quality as a MDS-JB 930 QS. The only difference is the bit-depth: the 530 encodes and decodes with 18 bit precision, the 930 with 24. Curiously enough, it doesn´t have any effect on the sound quality. The bit depth may be different, the quality of the encoding is not. Meaning: both are way superior to portable machines when it comes to encoding quality. I very much assume that it´s the same case with your MDS-JE 470. So, if you´re recording a simple CD digitally with your 470, the quality will be the same as if you´d be using a 930 QS model. I cannot speak for ES models though... but I think that they aren´t superior encoding-quality-wise.
  14. Judging from its frequency response, the Shure wouldn´t be my cup of tea I think. It has a very prominent and fairly wide peak around 10 kHz, muted deep bass and slightly diminished mids. In comparison, it´s no wonder that the Momentum ends up muffled. The Shure has too much treble, the Momentum not enough. Today, headphones are engineered differently compared to several years ago. Reason is that several companies have started to incorporate recent 'discoveries' regarding headphone sound. People experience playback over loudspeakers less direct and more muffled. Headphones now tend to include that experience into their sound design. It all started more than 20 years ago when Sennheiser first introduced the HD-580 to the market. Several people regarded (and still do) it as 'veiled' sounding when it actually sounded balanced and leveled out. But people were so used to the sound of other, treble-heavy cans that the sound of the HD-580 felt muted to them. Harman Kardon has done important work regarding this. But if you want to stay with Shure, you could try the SRH-840, that headphone is famous for its balanced sound signature.
  15. You´re effectively transcoding from one lossy format to another. The first encoding produces several artifacts hidden by the louder music, that´s how lossy codecs (all of them) work. The ATRAC IC (just another codec from a data standpoint) treats these flaws hidden by music as one thing only: music, as it cannot differentiate between errors and actual musical information. Therefore you add one error (now produced by ATRAC) on top of the other. That you´re not hearing artifacts is a lucky coincidence. Erm... not the best idea. Most PCs nowadays have an optical output. Using that and a software player able to play MP3, AAC, whatever, you can do a direct copy of those MP3s to HiMD PCM. I wouldn´t use ATRAC3 LP2 at all. I can hear more or less severe compression artifacts all the time when encoding lossless music with that codec. Consider that no one has worked on improving ATRAC3 encoding for 15 years. And regarding how MP3 has been improved during those years and how very far lossy codecs in general have progressed, the simple truth is that ATRAC3 is ancient and belongs in a museum. It was decent all those years ago, today it´s just oldfashioned crap. Sorry to be this blunt, but that´s how it is. Exception: ATRAC3plus. Much younger codec incorporating some of AAC's compression mechanisms. I cannot distinguish a 352 kBit/s ATRAC3plus encode from the lossless original it was derived from. Even 256 kBit/s holds up well. Back to the OPs question: in general a transcoding from MP3 to ATRAC SP is audible. Listen to muffled transients (handclapping, hihats) and an added nervousness that wasn´t there before. In some cases quantization noise will creep into the sound (short 'hisses' on treble-heavy material). To get the most out of your transcode, iTunes isn´t exactly the best available to you; I recommend foobar2000 - it´s ugly but very good. That software puts out the full 32 bit floating point MP3 is capable off (iTunes can do that too - but the setup is dodgy). Via correctly configured optical out (24 bit / 44.1 kHz setting in MS Windows configuration panel) your MDS-JA20 won´t have any problems handling this bit depth as transported by foobar; it can handle floating point as well.
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