Should Sound Quality of Computer Audio be improved

Unable to respond to, "Mach2Music and Amarra: Huge Disappointment"- Thread. Other Members take free pop-shots!
Apparently some have more Freedom Of Speech than others! I
don't know how many times I have said it, I want Computer
Audio to succeed! It will only succeed if Computers are designed from the ground up to reproduce Music (Same minimum standard applied for Equipment of ALL Audio Formats)! This is common sense Audio Engineering Design. Bandaid Modifications cannot be substituted for absence in design to produce Music! Design it right to EARN the right to become a New Audio Format- same as all other Audio Formats! No Freebee's, No Cutting Corners! Lack of design is what's causing such varied results in S.Q. between
listeners of Computer Audio. I see about 50% negative
responses here on these Threads. It will continue to happen unless you fix it! Blaming me won't help! I am an
Engineer, and I can read results! 50/50 success/ failure
rate- you have an inherit Engineering Design Flaw for the
reproduction of Music via Computers! Shock! Suprise- since
they were never designed for Music! So when is someone finally going to properly design the Equipment/Computer
(From the ground up) for Computer Audio? Do we continue
to treat any real criticism as "HERESY" in the lack of
design in Computer Audio for Music? You tell me what I am
allowed to talk about, and we will both know!

I understand, a bit more clearly now after your last post, that your main concern is the pace of music releases available as digital downloads being too slow. Your perception is that the transition from LP and CD to digital downloading needs to be better managed and quicker.

IMO, these are legitimate concerns. I'm a new convert to digital audio and I'm learning more every day. I just downloaded the JRiver app, on a free 30 day trial basis, and have only ripped about 5 of my cds to my laptop. I still need to purchase a good inexpensive DAC( to start at least) and am looking into the best method for incorporating my laptop into my main home system. I'll probably be sharing your concerns, once I begin downloading music in earnest, soon enough.

Although I 'm a newbee to computer audio, I am definitely not a newbee to home audio. When I bought my first system about 40 yrs ago, LPs were the preferred source and you needed a good turntable and cartridge. The main topics of discussion then were whether you should use a direct-drive or belt-drive turntable and should you get a moving magnet or moving coil cartridge.

In the 1980s, CDs came out promising 'perfect sound forever'. I remember this transition well. Most of us were curious and gave it a try. Eliminating the clicks, pops. warps, groove wear & tear and static of LPs seemed like a dream come true. The big issue became which sounded better and whether you were going to buy your next new music on LP or CD. Music was readily available on both formats, even cassette tape, for several years until CDs predominated and the older technologies passed the torch to them.

As I recall, there were many complaints of the "digititis" of the CD sound, which usually meant overly bright, with hard edges, and less smoothness and less natural/organic sounding when compared to LPs. This led to a resurgence in the LP format that has lasted to this day.

My point is that format transitions are not new to home audio. I haven't even described the transitions of 78 rpm records to 33 1/3rd rpm albums, mono to stereo and many others.

The best response for your concerns I can offer is to be patient. I know this response will not be satisfying or sufficient for you. You feel that you have committed to digital audio and downloading content but the 'powers that be' have not made a similar commitment to this new format, or at least not quickly enough. By being patient I mean, although you may not realize it or think they are moving too slowly, the 'powers that be' are paying attention and are determining which format they should invest their money into.

The beauty of capitalism is that it actually works. Those of us who are music lovers and believe in computer audio and downloaded high-rez music files are not powerless. We vote constantly with our money on what hardware and software we prefer. Suppliers, whether we're aware of it or not, are paying close attention.

Now for the important questions: what inexpensive ($300 or less) dac should I buy, what's the best way to hook it up to my preamp and what type of file/resolution should I use to download?

Rhetorical questions, I'm sure there are plenty of discussions and threads to read for answers to my questions.


Nothing is stopping you from buying any format. All formats can be converted into anything you like. Even the 180g vinyl. This is what you don't seem to be getting. Any and all formats are viable to you. As things settle ultimately everything will be a file. For sure all music you are considering at some point in the process is a computer file. Those remasters have all been transferred to a computer to be cleaned and stored.

So your point is mute. Anything you want you can have. If you want to use your computer? Wow then great. If you want to listen to a CD? Great listen to it. You can rip the CD to your HD or whatever you like. Flexible. SACD? well they are being used via computers too now with latest DAC supporting DSD etc. HD downloads etc etc all good. Enjoy. Stop worrying.
Petty Officer,
It seems that the data out there was aways open to interpretation. Even a totally objective determination can only conclude what is currently happening making any forecast a guess, at best.

Here is another bit of data that contradicts the doom that some have been shopping around:

It was bound to happen since any trend is merely that, a trend, and not a harbinger or omen. At my recent visit to the Newport Audio show, I picked up a couple of MA Recording CDs and browsed other vendors. Computer Audio was there but not as forcefully touted as the last time. There were also enough CDPs being used as well, not to mention all the TTs. There's always going to be something for everyone.

All the best,
Strongly disagree Chadeffect. There is a clear difference from a Major Label Remastering in a Professional Recording
Studios (With Equipment perhaps costing hundreds of thousands), and burning a CD in your garage. You seem to think that Downloading a Music File is the equivalent of owning your own Professional Recording Studios. Even if this were so, what layman would even have the skill to mix,
produce, or Remaster even with Professional equipment. Some of us would prefer spending more time listening to Music instead of being tasked to produce it. Call us lazy,
we used to pay someone else to produce our Music for us. Now we have to pay extra for the equipment (And the priviledge) of producing our own Media. We didn't used to be tasked, now we are tasked and paying out the nose for it. Why the huge shift DOWN in ease of use in Audio Formats? Who makes the huge profit in shifting the production cost onto the shoulders of the end user- the CUSTOMER? They are still charging us the same for CD, or
Download. Only now you pay twice. Once for the Download, and again for the equipment to burn to CD- not to mention the added time and tasking involved. In the end we are paying way more for the same Music. Some of us can add. Some of us can even count what is limited availability as Download. "Soon all New Music will only be available as Music Downloads", that means ALL other Formats (CD,LP) go
by the wayside. Some of us can even read. The Music used to serve us, now we serve the Music- and pay more for the
priviledge (With less selection no less). ENOUGH is ENOUGH!

Disagree with what? Major record label? Why do you always make things so complicated?

You don't seem to understand what I am saying. Whatever format you want or have the music on, can all be stored (copied) onto your computer while retaining the old format you so love. So just buy the CDs you are fond of. Then at anytime you can play either the CD in your player or the copy on your HD.

Surely you can rip your CDs? No recording studio, producers, remixers, mastering etc needed! Ripping CDs via a computer does it on its own (automated) with the exception of possible setting of preferences. You think a pro studio wouldn't rip a CD due to the quality of the rip? I could tell you some stories...

You will be able to do the same ripping process with an SACD too. Ok to record your TT set up takes a little more skill and an investment in a ADDA and some software maybe, but its not impossible either.

A friend of mine brought over some copies he made from his TT to a mid priced pro CDR not long ago. The sound was excellent. Surprisingly so.

If you are concerned about losing music/finding catalogues, the solution is plain. Then when you feel the future is safe enough for you to use your computer only, you will have all your collection anyway. Nicely digitally stored and archived ready for playback and all your vinyl, SACDs and CDs safe in their covers. Why don't you understand this? You need no skills. A five year old could do it.