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What sample rate? 44.1, 48 or 96Khz?


GazzaBloom
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I don't use it, so I can't tell you from experience. But, in general, it really depends on what you are using it for. 

Making MP3's at 128k doesn't require 96. 

 

I can't imagine any 'dirty' guitar sound to need 96. 

Some people will even argue that you don't need 96 for anything that is recorded 'live'. Step recording, half speed recording -- ok, maybe they need it. Making 5.1 surround sound, sure. 

But not your typical everyday stuff. 

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I would not use 96 kHz. Depending on what you're doing this can bring your computer to it's knees. Regarding 44.1kHz (for CDs) or 48kHz (for video), it probably doesn't make much difference. It's mostly a concern when recording with your DAW. Most sample libraries come at 44.1kHz but modern DAWs can upsample to 48kHz on the fly. Many people seem to favor 48kHz just to give themselves a little more room to process 20kHz signals with less phase shift. If you're only doing music or using older equipment then 44.1kHz is good enough. Whatever you do, choose one and stick with it because it can be a pain keeping track of which recording uses which sample rate. For better future-proofing I've gone to 48kHz.

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96 kHz will give better headroom for recording. You could record whisper quiet sounds to thunderously loud sounds, with less chance of clipping ( distorting ) the signal. Of course you would need excellent mics which are set properly. Condenser mics are great for vocals and acoustic guitars.

 

IMO you can get away with 48k for rock, and pop style recordings. There is also a process known as dithering which should be applied in a daw (recording software program, or digital audio workstation), if you record in a high sample rate and convert to a lower rate while mastering.

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96 kHz will give better headroom for recording. You could record whisper quiet sounds to thunderously loud sounds, with less chance of clipping ( distorting ) the signal. Of course you would need excellent mics which are set properly. Condenser mics are great for vocals and acoustic guitars.

 

IMO you can get away with 48k for rock, and pop style recordings. There is also a process known as dithering which should be applied in a daw (recording software program, or digital audio workstation), if you record in a high sample rate and convert to a lower rate while mastering.

 

You're mixing up higher sampling rates with higher bit rates.

 

Higher bit rates like 24-bit will increase dynamic range. Higher sample rates do not increase headroom. Dithering is applied to make 24-bit recordings into 16-bit recordings. Changing 96kHz to say 44.1kHz is called sample-rate conversion, not dithering.

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You're mixing up higher sampling rates with higher bit rates.

 

Higher bit rates like 24-bit will increase dynamic range. Higher sample rates do not increase headroom. Dithering is applied to make 24-bit recordings into 16-bit recordings. Changing 96kHz to say 44.1kHz is called sample-rate conversion, not dithering.

I stand corrected, thanks for that and hope I didn't mislead too many of you.
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my soundcard says higher samplerate = lower latency,

obviously lower bitrate also lower latency.

 

Not as obvious as you might think! :-)

 

Sample rate affects time (does impact latency). Bit rate affects dynamic range (doesn't impact latency).

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Latency is just time delay and is independent in my system. If I have a latency of 240 samples at 48kbps then I'll get a latency of 480 samples at 96kbps. It's 5msec of latency either way. My sound card can keep up with that. The bottleneck at 96kbps occurs when my DAW has to do a lot processing of the signal. At 96kbps it has 1/2 the time to do it in compared to 48kbps. If the CPU can't keep up then latency will get longer at higher sample rates, not lower. I guess my point is latency is more than a sound card issue. Still, 48kHz should be good for the HD500.

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As other have said.... 96kHz uses up much more disk space, and requires higher CPU speeds to deal with. Here are the basic storage needs for the major rates/bit depth (in mono, so double for stereo):

 

44.1kHz/16bit - 5.04MB/min
44.1kHz/24bit - 7.57MB/min
48kHz/16bit - 5.49MB/min
48kHz/24bit - 8.23MB/min
96kHz/16bit - 10.98MB/min
96kHz/24bit - 16.47MB/min
192kHz/16bit - 21.97MB/min
192kHz/24bit - 32.95MB/min

 

That's being said, 44.1kHz/24-bit is a good trade off for size/quality/storage. Bit depth makes more of impact (IMHO) that sample rate. Think of an 8-bit PNG and 24-bit PNG file of the same image... which one looks better?

 

YMMV.

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pianoguyy

 

"I can't imagine any 'dirty' guitar sound to need 96. "

 

On the contrary, 96KHz would be more ideal, for the fact that guitar tone's with overdrive or distortion, produce high order

harmonics well beyond the original note, so the higher sample rates in this case would capture them more faithfully.

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96 kHz will give better headroom for recording. You could record whisper quiet sounds to thunderously loud sounds, with less chance of clipping ( distorting ) the signal. Of course you would need excellent mics which are set properly. Condenser mics are great for vocals and acoustic guitars.

 

IMO you can get away with 48k for rock, and pop style recordings. There is also a process known as dithering which should be applied in a daw (recording software program, or digital audio workstation), if you record in a high sample rate and convert to a lower rate while mastering.

 

That's bitdepth, not samplerate.

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I use 48kHz because, for some reason, the recorded sound is better than with 44.1kHz. The only problem is then I have to use a program to do the conversion from 48 to 44.1 to put the track on cd or to play it with a player which doesn't support 48kHz. Also at 48kHz, I see from the meter that there's few latency. I've got even less latency at 96kHz, but I've tried to record with that in the past and got weird phasing in the record tracks, so I've stopped using it. I also always use 24 bit

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pianoguyy

 

"I can't imagine any 'dirty' guitar sound to need 96. "

 

On the contrary, 96KHz would be more ideal, for the fact that guitar tone's with overdrive or distortion, produce high order

harmonics well beyond the original note, so the higher sample rates in this case would capture them more faithfully.

 

But those higher order harmonics are then filtered through a crude band-pass filter in the shape of a real or modelled 12" speaker and not much above traces of 8k to 10k gets through.

 

It will be better modelled at 96K with less distortion introduced as there are 12 samples per 8k wave rather than 5.5 samples at 44.1, but the difference to the average rock guitarist is "I'm sorry can you say that again, my ears ring a bit"!

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Think of an 8-bit PNG and 24-bit PNG file of the same image... which one looks better?

 

 

Depends, is it an 8-Bit Heart?

 

When I first started digital recording, I always went with the highest rate and bit depth, but I was fairly clueless.

After learning a bit more I went to 44.1kHz/16bit for noodling and 44.1kHz/24bit for final takes.

Now I just stick with 44.1kHz/24bit.

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What about the lonely, never mentioned, all by itself 88.2KHz? Does anyone even ever consider this one?

I do....I use that rate for mixdown rendering/mastering when it's going to end up on a CD at 44.1K....if it's mp3 I use 96K since those end up being 48K....re-sampling works pretty nicely when it's cut in half...no partial frames...

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