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Topic: Mixing 16 and 24 bit samples

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  1. #1

    Mixing 16 and 24 bit samples

    Now that Gigastudio can play back 24 bit samples and an increasing number of libraries of that width appear I am wondering how much sense it makes to mix them with older 16 bit libraries. Has anyone experimented with this a little? Is a significant improvement in the overall sound to be expected from using 24 bit libraries exclusively? - This is not about 16 vs 14 bits in general (which has been discussed plenty), but more about the question whether consistency plays much of a role. After all, 16 bit samples are 24 bit samples, just with 8 leading 0s ;-)

  2. #2

    Re: Mixing 16 and 24 bit samples

    I have not seen this as an issue; if you were playing exposed 16-bit pp parts, you will hear the usual artifacts, but blending and mixing - no big deal...
    Dasher
    -------
    It's all about the music - really. I keep telling myself that...

  3. #3

    Re: Mixing 16 and 24 bit samples

    I've upgraded most of my 16-bit piano libraries to 24 and they sound a bit more silky but not as much as when comparing vocals recorded at 16-bit to 24. I think the reason the improvement is more subtle is that libraries don't have a layer for every single midi velocity (yet?) so most of the notes played get their volume scaled down which populates the low order bits as well as shifts them to the right throwing away a bit or few. So I don't lose too much sleep over mixing 16 and 24 bit samples but I go for the 24's when I can get them.

    Howard
    Ragtime Press

  4. #4

    Re: Mixing 16 and 24 bit samples

    Quote Originally Posted by jens
    Now that Gigastudio can play back 24 bit samples and an increasing number of libraries of that width appear I am wondering how much sense it makes to mix them with older 16 bit libraries. Has anyone experimented with this a little? Is a significant improvement in the overall sound to be expected from using 24 bit libraries exclusively?
    Of course, the more of the critical (read: dynamic) material is 24 bits wide, the better. When playing back 16-bit samples with longer release times or reverb tails, the quantization noise that occurs as their level drops close to the LSBs can mask equally quiet parts with a higher resolution that sound at the same time. Other than that, no problems.

    After all, 16 bit samples are 24 bit samples, just with 8 leading 0s ;-)
    Trailing 0s, actually. 8 leading 0s would attenuate the level by 48dB.

    Cheers,
    jan

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