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Topic: Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV) (Read 10674 times) previous topic - next topic

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  • Frankie
  • [*][*]
Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV)
Hi folks!

Today I bought the Special Edition of the new Dream Theater album which, besides the CD, contains a 5.1 mix of the album on DVD. I want to convert those AC3-files to stereo, because this mix has much more dynamics then the mix used for the CD:

CD Mix: http://www.dr.loudness-war.info/details.php?id=46312
DVD Mix: http://www.dr.loudness-war.info/details.php?id=46802


So I ripped the AC3-files directly from the DVD using [READ TOS #9]. Then I tried to downmix and convert them using foobar and the "Downmix 5.1 to stereo"-DSP + PPHS resampler. Unfortunatly, the resulting files had much less dynamics then they should have.
Next I updated my pretty old version of foobar to the current one. The DSP is now called "Downmix channels to stereo" but the result is the same. Much less dynamics.
So I installed the plugin "Channel Mixer" and with this one I managed to keep the dynamics. But now I'm not sure how to set up this plug in since there are many options (Front-, Center-, Rear- and Subwoofer-Levels, delay settings).

So my questions are:

- Is "Channel Mixer" the best choice to downmix 5.1 to stereo while keeping full dynamics or are there maybe other (better?) plugins to do this?
- How do I set up Channel Mixer to get best results for music?
- and just because I'm curious: Why do I loose so much dynamics when using the standard DSP that comes with foobar?
  • Last Edit: 25 September, 2013, 01:55:57 PM by db1989

  • zfox
  • [*]
Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV)
Reply #1
This is a DVD-A disc. You can create a disc image with AnyDVD or DVDFab and use this foobar plugin to access the MLP (lossless) tracks. Then you should downmix.
  • Last Edit: 25 September, 2013, 12:00:47 PM by zfox

  • Frankie
  • [*][*]
Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV)
Reply #2
You are talking about the 96/24 files but those use the same shitty mastering as the CD and therefore are useless. (If you want 96/24 with the good mastering you have to buy from HDtracks).

But anyway, I found a very good way now to downmix those files using audacity, which allows me to control gain of each channel and let me set up exactly how channels are mixed.

  • julf
  • [*][*][*][*]
Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV)
Reply #3
If you want 96/24 with the good mastering you have to buy from HDtracks


As long as it isn't one of the upsampled, zero-padded or compressed/remastered ones...

  • zfox
  • [*]
Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV)
Reply #4
Frankie, I am talking about the 5.1 MLP mix which is lossless with full dynamic range, stored in AUDIO_TS folder. You are extracting its lossy (Dolby) version that is stored in VIDEO_TS folder. If you are happy with it, that's it. 
  • Last Edit: 25 September, 2013, 03:40:55 PM by zfox

  • zfox
  • [*]
Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV)
Reply #5
As long as it isn't one of the upsampled, zero-padded or compressed/remastered ones...


Most HDtracks releases are flat transfers straight from original masters, not released before.
  • Last Edit: 25 September, 2013, 03:53:20 PM by zfox

  • Frankie
  • [*][*]
Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV)
Reply #6
Frankie, I am talking about the 5.1 MLP mix which is lossless with full dynamic range, stored in AUDIO_TS folder. You are extracting its lossy (Dolby) version that is stored in VIDEO_TS folder. If you are happy with it, that's it. 

Oh, I didn't know there's lossless 5.1 on this disc. I will try to extract it the way you described. Thx man!

  • probedb
  • [*][*][*][*][*]
Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV)
Reply #7
Whoever posted those results on loudness-war hasn't given specifics on how they did it. So unless you do exactly what they did you may still end up with differing results.

  • Frankie
  • [*][*]
Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV)
Reply #8
OK, I'm done now. Those plug in's for foobar are fantastic! I didn't even need to make an image, I could grab the audio and convert directly from the disc! So I did the downmix with "Channel Mixer" (didn't change any settings there) and the downsampling with the sox plug in and the result sounds absolutly fantastic to my ears!

Here's a waveform comparison between CD and downmix for track 7:





So thx again zfox, this sounds much better then the downmix I made from the lossy files!

Whoever posted those results on loudness-war hasn't given specifics on how they did it. So unless you do exactly what they did you may still end up with differing results.

Yes, that's true. My DR-results also differ slightly from the ones on the database, but it's just by one db (my mix seems to have even more dynamics with a max of 14).

  • julf
  • [*][*][*][*]
Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV)
Reply #9
Most HDtracks releases are flat transfers straight from original masters, not released before.


How do you know that?

A number of them have, as stated, turned out to be either upsampled from 44.1 kHz material or zero-padded from 16 bit material into "fake" 24 bit (or both). Yes, I can provide examples of both.


  • zfox
  • [*]
Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV)
Reply #10
There are documented cases like those, but are minority. Also, note that HDtracks sell what the labels give to them without further processing.

  • julf
  • [*][*][*][*]
Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV)
Reply #11
There are documented cases like those, but are minority.


Sure. Just something to be aware of. And also another data point in the discussion about the claimed superiority of "hi-res" formats - quite a bunch of golden-eared audiophiles praised the superior sound quality of those downloads, until it was shown that they were fakes. Some, of course, just refused to believe the evidence.

Quote
Also, note that HDtracks sell what the labels give to them without further processing.


Absolutely. So how can they back the claim that the files are "flat transfers straight from original masters"?

  • zfox
  • [*]
Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV)
Reply #12
Absolutely. So how can they back the claim that the files are "flat transfers straight from original masters"?


They don't have to. That's what the labels tell them. You have to take the word of them, there is nothing else you can do.

We pushed this too far and now we are off-topic.
  • Last Edit: 26 September, 2013, 07:17:06 AM by zfox

  • julf
  • [*][*][*][*]
Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV)
Reply #13
You have to take the word of them, there is nothing else you can do.


Quite.

Quote
We pushed this too far and now we are off-topic.


Agree. Enough on this one.


  • krabapple
  • [*][*][*][*][*]
Pls help me to convert music (AC3 5.1) to stereo (WAV)
Reply #14
As long as it isn't one of the upsampled, zero-padded or compressed/remastered ones...


Most HDtracks releases are flat transfers straight from original masters, not released before.



Actually HDtracks uses whatever 'master' the record companies supplies to them (and it is supplied to them as a digital file)...which is not  necessarily the original , 1st generation mixdown master.


As such they are rather cagey with their wording on their site.  AFAICT they don't explicitly claim anywhere that they are offering flat transfers of mixdown masters.  Remember that a 'master' can be anything that is used as a source for a production run.
  • Last Edit: 26 September, 2013, 10:11:46 PM by krabapple