Bleep Highlights 24-bit Downloads

In another sign of the increasing popularity of high resolutions downloads, Bleep has created a special 24-Bit section on their website. While this may not seem like much, I view this as a good indication that the search for better quality music downloads is starting to bubble to the surface of even non-audiophile music sites. Now we just need some DSD titles of popular music to show up on the download scene and I'll be dancin' in the streets.

Stephen Mejias's picture

I'm just gonna go ahead and state the obvious: This is awesome.

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

With the announcement of DSD downloads from Acoustic Sounds, I expect you really are dancing in the streets. Please post video so we can all dance along.

Michael Lavorgna's picture

12V Trigger's picture

They have a lot from the Domino label. So many good things coming from them these days.

Archimago's picture

May I suggest that we have a look at the mastering on these 24-bit files?

Let's click on the link and look at the first 6 albums that I can find on the DR Database? (Many/most of these are not exactly popular albums.)

Bonobo - The North Borders - album DR7
Mount Kimbie - Cold Spring Fault Less Youth - album DR6
Wild Beasts - Two Dancers - album DR8
Wild Beasts - Smother - album DR10
Villagers - Awayland - album DR8
Anna Calvi - S/T - album DR7

Now the above are the CD releases. Unless someone can show me that they're using a different mastering to produce these 24-bit files, does anyone seriously think that going from 16-bit to 24-bit would actually make these dynamically compressed files sound any better?!

Folks... Let's think about this before spewing just how "awesome" this is. The mastering trumps any of this bit-depth, sampling rate, DSD vs. PCM nonsense. Please do the audiophile community a favour and make sure music lovers understand this. What's the point of adding the extra dynamic range if in the end it gets squashed other than purposely wasting the consumer's disk space?

Michael Lavorgna's picture

Ah, no thanks.

JR_Audio's picture

I want to join a bit into the dynamic range point. I totally agree, that increasing the dynamic range of 7 or 8 (which is really compressed) to 10 or 11 will add much more live, sound stage, space between instruments and breath of the composition into the music, than having only a “high res” version of the same dynamic range 7 file.

I am listening and buying music a lot, and what I hate the most with many CDs and files, is the much too high compression of the music. The soundstage is flat and the musicians squeezed on a flat line without real space. I like the musical content of many new releases (in my genre) a lot, but I can't listen to them on a good Hi-Fi system.

So beside just labelling the sample rate, I would suggest also labelling the dynamic range. Sure, every music stile has its own typical dynamic range, but actually, nowadays, we have by far less dynamic in the mixes, than we have had 30 years ago (even the hardware nowadays could have a much higher dynamic range).

I am stating the point, that increasing the Dynamic Range from 7 to 10 (and keep the sample rate (for example 44k1) the same) does bring more live and 3D soundstage and realism into the music, than keeping the Dynamic Range (for example 7) the same and having only the file in 88k2 instead of 44k1.


PS: Michael, keep going your good work on your site. I appreciate that and do read it on regular basis. I am sorry, that we haven't yet met before, but you can ask John Atkinson who I am am. We know each other for longer than 20 years and I visited him the first time back in the Santa Fe days.

Michael Lavorgna's picture

I agree with your point and it would be great if all recorded music avoided excessive  dynamic compression. But this obviously is not the case.

This post, on the other hand, was about a music retailer, Bleep, that specializes in non-audiophile music offering 24-bit recordings which I view as a positive development. As someone who is interested in getting the best sounding version of a recording, this is very good news. And I note that I buy music for the music first, then try to find the best sounding version available and so far I have never purchased an album that I found unlistenable. Sure some recordings sound better than others but I find the music always speaks through issues of sound quality. This is why I can enjoy listening to music in my car, in a bar, and on and on.

In my opinion, pointing out that some recordings employ excessive dynamic compression in this context is like pointing out that it rains on a travel website talking about vacationing in the Caribbean.