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Everything posted by cochra1

  1. Yeah. Don't reckon it's gonna happen though. It's been reckoned almost since it's release that the RH1 is the last minidisc recorder ever to be produced (by Sony, if not anyone). I've just ordered mine and I'm gonna treasure it.
  2. What's the deal with this auxillery back-up power/charger thing that uses AA batteries? Why not simply invest in a second rechargable battery or two, and circulate them if need be? Surely has to be more convenient than that great lump of a recharger/back-up unit to carry around!
  3. CASSETTES! How DARE you! I won't hear such talk. Horrible things. Even pre-CD I would never touch the things, always favoured vinyl (you should get one of those in-car vinyl record decks. Ok, I made that up.)
  4. Battery life has never been a problem for me my friend. I have an MZ-NH600, which you can pick up on the net now for around £60-£70 new, it's Hi-MD, and uses a single AA battery, and gives many hours play time. I just have a couple of rechargable batteries which I circulate, so I'm never without power. Tends to go on a single battery for about 4-5 days (playing about 4 hours + a day - I use it to and from work every day). And the sound quality (OMO) of Hi-MD, at the max bitrate available, does surpass the old SP. I love my old MZ-NH600, but have just ordered an MZ-RH1 cos they're so damn sexy. Expensive though. I'm gonna be eating beans for the next month.
  5. Thanks man, that's interesting (and slightly disturbing) information. I did buy them from a shop rather than an individual seller, and the shop has an excellent customer satisfaction rating. But all the same it does seem a bit too good to be true so I'll be wary. Actually - CORRECTION! It was Amazon, not ebay.
  6. I've just purchased a nice pair of Sennheiser CX300 phones for a measley 8 quid (new/boxed!) on ebay. Never heard them, but read some good reviews. One review (C/Net) gave them a poor-looking 7.3/10 and said the following: Good points: good solid sound quality, lightweight, perfect fit, significant isolation from outside sounds. Bad points: The Sennheiser CX 300 doesn't come with a travel pouch or any other accessories. I mean, for f*<^ sake, travel pouch! Accesories! If that's their only gripe I reckon I'm on to a good thing with these muthas. Does anyone out there in minidisc land have any experience of these in-ear babies?
  7. Ow! Sorry, thanks for the tip - didn't actually realise this thing had a search function, thanks. Andy
  8. Good man, you're quite right! Oof! Ok, ok, next time I'll search before asking, but many thanks for the link this time! --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Excellent, I have that sussed. So Bit rate = (bit depth) x (sampling rate) x (number of channels)
  9. I was just wondering to myself - CDs are '16 bit', minidiscs are '8 bit' and SACD or DVD-A are '24 bit', with the bitrate referring to the number of increments of amptitude (volume), as I understand it. My pro music production soundcard goes up to 32 bit. So obviously all these bitratings we hear about in compressed recordings of anything from 48kbps (poor quality) to 352kbps (best quality) must be something different entirely - it's like apples and bananas! What does it actually mean? There must be some Tech-head out there who can explain! Thanks in advance
  10. Simple answer is, as big as MP3 is now, CD is STILL the most popular medium for listening to music. More people still have collections of CDs, more than any other format. The CD format was invented in the late 70s (albeit a crappy version) and took about ten years to become the most-used medium, such is the slow pace of populations to catch on (prices/markets allowing). I predict that in ten years time, MP3 or some other compressed format will have become the most popular for cars (as it is now for walkmans), with SACD or DVD-Audio being standard for the home. Who knows - maybe later generations of compressed formats will be looking to emulate the likes of SACD - although, to be fair, I doubt it, as the real cream of high quality can't really be appreciated in outdoor/travel environments. But I digress!
  11. Forgive me if this has been answered elsewhere, but I'm quite new to this forum! I'm intrigued by the 'Advanced Lossless' concept. Quote: "...able to compress a CD anywhere from 30% to 80% of its original size without any loss of data". If it is indeed 'lossless', why are there various bitrate options? They can't all be lossless can they; otherwise why would anyone use any but the lowest possible bitrates. Is it just the top rate (352kbps) that is lossless?
  12. Very interesting interview. Totemo omoshiroi intabyuu!
  13. Still, it must be annoying. I often sit with my headphones on, playing an album from my library whilst I'm working on other things. So thanks for the tip about the break between tracks; I shan't be downloading SS vs 4.2! Maybe it'll be fixed in 4.3...
  14. Sounds good! I forgot to ask earlier, anyone: There have been some well publicised issues regarding MP3s sounding crappy on minidiscs (some even accused Sony of deliberately setting up their units to make MP3s sound bad so that ATRAC would be favoured). Has this issue been resolved with the RH1? I ask because I'm not gonna download ATRAC files at the crappy bitrate currently offered by Connect (I mean! 132kbps - better to buy the CD and copy it myself), so I'm wanting to combine the convenience of both formats (minidisc hardware + MP3 files). So, do MP3s sound good on this sexy little beast?
  15. You're right Sparda, goddammit, I'm gonna do it! Thanks to OzPeter for those wise words also. And thanks Sparda for assuring me that the remote link doesn't cause any noticable degradation - I have had some bad experiences in the past, but that was an Aiwa remote, and it was pretty nasty. But either way, it's the player/recorder itself that counts. I'm gonna get me one of them there babies.
  16. You're right. What I was looking for would not be affected by these slight differences though. I was looking for more obvious peaks and troughs in certain frequency ranges (eg. for bass around the 60-200hz region, and for treble around the 8khz+ region) which would be dupilcated on multiple 'takes'. But you are quite right, sampling from optical (or even direct from a CD drive) many times would produce many subtly different results. The only exception would be using software which reads and duplicates EXACTLY the data on the audio CD (which the likes of SS, Nero and Windows does not do). Even then the conversion process into ATRAC would produce differing results each time. But the trick of a good test is to duplicate it and look for common results in each trial. My graphs were much like the ones submitted on this thread - not really specific enough (but thanks anyway to Roman). I must admit also, that when I carried out the analytical test myself, I could not hear any differences when comparing the different samples on my PC (like Roman said also). I am so tempted to say (as was suggested earlier) that the whole thing has been a placebo - but how come my colleague agreed with my observations (see earlier post)..? And why would there even be a placebo effect given that I had no prejudices about SS being inferior to optical? I'm confused now by my own contradictory observations and am going to get a stiff drink.
  17. You could be right mate (about different ATRAC versions). By the way, my own testing has failed at the first hurdle(!) as my software can't analyse accurately enough. I did zoom in close on the waves and saw a very tiny (negligible really) delay between the left and right channels on the SS version in comparison to the optical version. But this is not really usable data because I didn't repeat the test to see if the results would be duplicated (no point as it is really negligible anyway). I did try some frequency analysis (of literally a split second of a song which contained a hard bass drum beat followed by a hihat - perfect for testing). But unfortunately the software I have is not up to the task as it wasn't really designed for this purpose. The resulting graphs and data were at too low a resolution. I shall leave this thread now, but I really appreciate everyone's suggestions, thanks, and see you on another thread!
  18. Cool. Four times should be more than enough though (and it may even be the case that the degredation only happens the first time a track which has come from an outside source is imported into the SS library; multiple transfers back-and-forth may make no difference, but I don't know). If one can tell no difference between a realtime recording and the same song grabbed in SS (after just one conversion) then that means SS is fine for that person (as it is for most people). The test I (and a colleague) did gave blatant results to us (with experienced ears), but I'm sure if the average person gave them a listen they would hear no difference. I mean, to illustrate the point, I know people with mp3 players who use quite low bitrates to get as much crammed onto their players as possible, who say they can't tell the difference in quality. Mosty people just aren't that perseptive! Anyway, the bottom line is the difference is there (less bass weight, fractured top-end), but the only thing that matters is if you can hear it. Watch this post - I will be attempting to produce graphical representations of the effect of SS as compared to realtime captures.
  19. Man that doll is a babe. Kawaii desuneee.
  20. Beutiful pictures man. Those minidiscs are far sexier than any ipod I ever saw. It's like when you see a classic car, you just thing...Quality! Love it! Daisukida! Andy
  21. Have to say I had the greatest respect for Mr Raja for the time he took to present his well thought-out review for us, along with fab pics, making this a very enjoyable presentation. But then I noticed the playlist on his player. I mean - BRITNEY SPEARS???!
  22. It's reassuring for me both that the 'normaliser' can be turned off, and it's good to hear it gives a better sound than your usual volume limiter (which I know how to hack anyway, so that's not a problem). I'm still wondering what kind of effect it would have on a really dynamic track, eg. 'The Musical Box' by Genesis from their Nursery Cryme album. It's really quiet for ages to build the tension, then it explodes into loud rock. How would the normaliser deal with this? Surely if the quiet part was 'normalised' to a higher volume, the genuine loud parts would have less impact and not sound much louder. I liked what someone said earlier about it possibly being an 'expander' - these use similar technology to limiters, but the effect is to bring up the quiet bits without necessarily squashing down the loud bits. But the overall effect is still, by definition, compression (dynamic compression I mean, not data). Still, now I know it can be turned off, I don't have to worry. Thanks everyone. No, don't use a remote for my player (I've tried them) - those things degrade the sound, which to me is the number one factor. I really don't recommend sticking that bit of cheap circuitry in the chain between your (hopefully) decent earphones and your player. Sorry, gone a bit off topic hear. I really appreciate all your advice on the MZ-RH1 and the normaliser.
  23. Thanks for your contribution, Roman. Problem is, I'm guessing that even the optically-captured track was transfered to your hard drive via SonicStage. I believe that the degradation occurs at the point of capture to the SonicStage library. I base this on an experiment I carried out whereby I took my optically-captured song, transferred it to SonicStage, and then transfered it BACK to my minidisc. The sound had degraded simply by transfering. I believe the loss happened on it's way IN to SonicStage rather than the journey back out because SS has a tickbox for selecting to transfer out in the original form with no further conversion (which I selected). It doesn't have a likewise tickbox for the transfer IN, so some sort of processing always happens when a song is captured IN to SonicStage. It is this processing that causes the degradation (I theorise). The best references to use for a test (besides having access to the HiMD disc itself) would be to transfer each version of the song via the headphone output (with the EQ off and the auto limiter hacked) to your PC via its soundcard, using whatever realtime recording software you have. I take on board what you say about your poor quality soundcard. I have a nice soundcard (pro quality for music production) so I could produce the samples, and I could zoom closely on the wave graphics to compare for differences - but I don't really have any analytical software. But who would I send them to...?
  24. Absitively posolutely. I'm saying that if you use SonicStage to capture your recordings to minidisc it degrades the sound to a subtle extent, whereas realtime/optical capture results in the cleaner, smoother, more pleasing sound. I don't know why this is, it certainly isn't logical, but it happens.
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