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USB vs. CD sound quality

Discussion in 'Audio & Video' started by machman, Nov 12, 2009.

  1. Nov 12, 2009 at 6:44 PM
    #1
    machman

    machman [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I recently bought a Excelon KDC-993 with USB. To me, the USB sounds almost as good as CD. I have only listened with factory speakers though. What are your thoughts on this?
     
  2. Nov 12, 2009 at 7:12 PM
    #2
    bear-229

    bear-229 Active Member

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    all depends on what bit rate the mp3 is ripped at. i have been using a jump drive in my yj for almost 2 years now. does't matter if it slides or bounces around
     
  3. Nov 12, 2009 at 7:18 PM
    #3
    machman

    machman [OP] Well-Known Member

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    What I do on most of my stuff is rip it to Windows Media Player from a CD, then transfer it to my Jump Drive. What is an ideal bit rate? How do I know what rate it is?
     
  4. Nov 12, 2009 at 7:22 PM
    #4
    itsmyturn

    itsmyturn Well-Known Member

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    i think that kenwood has a 24 bit d/a converter. but im not sure if that converter applies to the usb port. it will definitely help with the sound quality.
     
  5. Nov 12, 2009 at 7:23 PM
    #5
    Incognito

    Incognito μολὼν λαβέ

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    I can't even tell the difference if I was blindfolded... :eek:
     
  6. Nov 12, 2009 at 7:33 PM
    #6
    machman

    machman [OP] Well-Known Member

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    It does have 24 bit converter. The sound difference between it and the stock head unit was pretty substantial, even with the stock speakers.
     
  7. Nov 12, 2009 at 7:35 PM
    #7
    machman

    machman [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I have litterally flipped from a song on CD to the same song on USB(downloaded from the CD) and I can't tell the difference...but once again, I have stock speaker.
     
  8. Nov 12, 2009 at 8:20 PM
    #8
    TorenApart

    TorenApart Well-Known Member

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    To me, a well recorded CD is significantly better than an MP3. Sometimes cd players have harmonizers that can make up some of the difference in the highs and lows (where the compression of an MP3 occurs the most), however, this is no substitute for a .cda

    It is of course easier to hear on a nicer system.
     
  9. Nov 12, 2009 at 8:22 PM
    #9
    AvsFanTRD

    AvsFanTRD Oh gravity, thou art a heartless bitch!

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    128 is suppose to be cd quality
     
  10. Nov 12, 2009 at 8:27 PM
    #10
    copernicus

    copernicus Well-Known Member

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    Considering how sucky the cab is at hiding engine noise and transmission nosie, you won't be able to tell.
     
  11. Nov 12, 2009 at 8:32 PM
    #11
    ItalynStylion

    ItalynStylion Sounds Gooooood

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    Now THAT'S funny!

    128kbps is horrible in my opinion. I rip 192 or higher with no exceptions. I'm slowly starting to rip everything as WAV since a removable USB drive in the taco is in my near future.
     
  12. Nov 12, 2009 at 10:08 PM
    #12
    TorenApart

    TorenApart Well-Known Member

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    :eek:

    Logic tells me that if you can rip a higher quality than 128 from a source, how can the source top out at 128kbps?

    From my experience, true lossless audio ("CD quality") can be anywhere between 350kbps and 800kbps, give or take...
     
  13. Nov 12, 2009 at 10:14 PM
    #13
    Juggernaut

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    Yah, 320 kbps is excellent, 192kbps if you want to fit more songs on your flash drive. Anything less than 192 and even my untrained ear will start to notice a difference.
     
  14. Nov 13, 2009 at 4:50 AM
    #14
    machman

    machman [OP] Well-Known Member

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    How do you know what bit rate it is? I just ripped a CD to my computer with Windows Media Player and couldn't see anywhere that said what rate it was.
     
  15. Nov 13, 2009 at 6:58 AM
    #15
    ItalynStylion

    ItalynStylion Sounds Gooooood

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    On the Rip tab there is a very small arrow under the tab. Click that one and it will bring down a drop down menu. Where it says bit rate you can go out to the side and choose the one you want. If you have it set to rip MP3's the highest is 320 that it will let you do. It will let you rip a few other formats too like WAV. That option is right over the bitrate bar.
     
  16. Nov 13, 2009 at 7:21 AM
    #16
    rutherk1

    rutherk1 ElPhantasmo&TheChickenRunBlastarama

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    A lot of the newer units have 24 bit d/a converters so the mp3 decoding is quality. CD quality is still hard to beat but its something that is very hard to quantify using your ears.

    I use the LAME encoder at 320 kbit/s fixed bit rate and it sounds great.

    Again if you are asking weather you can hear a difference, most people can't, especially in a vehicle (since its such a horrible acoustic chamber). In theory an mp3 at even at 320kbit/s is still inferior compared to a CD which is 1,411.2 kbit/s.

    So in short, with todays modern CODECs and high bit rates, high storage capacity on portable devices, a good quality part like a Kenwood and a 192+ kbit/s mp3 is going to yield great results.

    Of course digital music delivery, as far as sound quality goes, will always be inferior to analog delivery. But that is another story there.
     
  17. Nov 13, 2009 at 7:39 AM
    #17
    machman

    machman [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Thanks a bunch guys. My tab is(was) set to default which is 128 Kbps. My max is 192 and I set it to that.
     
  18. Nov 13, 2009 at 7:49 AM
    #18
    rutherk1

    rutherk1 ElPhantasmo&TheChickenRunBlastarama

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    You may want to set it to 320. As storage space gets larger you are going to wish you had.

    I had to re rip a bunch of CD that I ripped at 96 and 128kbit/s in 1998 when I got my 32MB (yes. megabyte) Rio Mp3 walkman.

    Still works to this day :)
     
  19. Nov 13, 2009 at 7:55 AM
    #19
    jodapa

    jodapa New Member

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    I always thought it was ironic that now that I am able to afford some decent audio gear - my hearing is so bad that I cannot appreciate it.

    I actually have a Dual HD Radio with my Garmin Nuvi plugged into it used to play Mp3's. Even with the factory speakers it sounds nice.
     
  20. Nov 13, 2009 at 7:56 AM
    #20
    ItalynStylion

    ItalynStylion Sounds Gooooood

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    Check your format; you're probably ripping as WMA instead of MP3. Change it to MP3 and then your max will be 320. Also, MP3 is way more compatible with a ton more devices.
     
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