Blu-Spec CD

Googer

Lifer
Nov 11, 2004
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4
81
I love my SACD and DVD-A collections, but am terribly disappointed they have not been as sucessful as CD or MP3. Sony has announced a new format that has some potential for sucess, called Blu-Spec CD complete with a Rippable CD layer.


What do you know about it?

What is the capacity of these discs?
What are the sizes and specs for the pits and lands?
What's the specified sample rate and bit depth?
How many layers will they have?
Since the pits and lands are the same size as Red-Book CD they play on a standard CD player, what is the advantage of playing them on a Blu-Spec CD player?


http://www.ps3sacd.com/index.html#_20081105



It was the DRM and a lack of mandatory use of Hybrid Discs that killed SACD. If Sony had mandated from day one that SACD be reverse compatable, I could see how it would have taken over and replaced conventional CD's. If Sony meets or surpasses SACD's high resolution specs but allows for some level of lower resolution MP3, ATRAC, or Flac, ripping then I see a future for this medium where both iPOD lovers and Audiophiles will be happy.
 
Mar 11, 2004
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WTF is this? Its just regular CDs made higher quality? While there's nothing really wrong with that, I think it will fail for two reasons: yet another format that people won't understand, the higher quality of the disc won't matter if they keep fucking with the data they put on it.

I would much rather see them make an actual BD-R based format. The coating should hopefully help it last quite a while. Stick high quality versions, redbook, lossless surround, maybe binaural (partner with Dolby and slap Dolby Headphone on it for marketing), don't skimp on the packaging (think vinyl size which would allow you to put multiple discs in a thinner case), and I'd gladly pay good money for that.

Although, again, no new format matters if they keep screwing us over with poorly mixed/mastered versions.

Actually this format will be fine if they don't charge extra for it, and it becomes the de facto standard for producing CDs (so in other words it completely replaces regular CDs but the change is transparent to the end user). They could possibly get by with charging more if they happened to stop molesting the recordings (which would be a noticeable improvement to people and they'd probably think it was due to the new format).

I assume it follows the same specs as redbook (which is what 20-20,000 and 16/44.1?).
 

Googer

Lifer
Nov 11, 2004
12,571
4
81
Better yet, I think this is a win-win for both the consumer and RIAA:

Encrypt the Super High Resolution audio Data with some form of DRM and have a data layer or data section on the last track of the disc that holds transferrable high bit rate FLAC or MP3; possibly in conjunction with a standard CD Layer?. I believe consumers would really go for this concept.
 

Googer

Lifer
Nov 11, 2004
12,571
4
81
Originally posted by: darkswordsman17
WTF is this? Its just regular CDs made higher quality? While there's nothing really wrong with that, I think it will fail for two reasons: yet another format that people won't understand, the higher quality of the disc won't matter if they keep fucking with the data they put on it.

I would much rather see them make an actual BD-R based format. The coating should hopefully help it last quite a while. Stick high quality versions, redbook, lossless surround, maybe binaural (partner with Dolby and slap Dolby Headphone on it for marketing), don't skimp on the packaging (think vinyl size which would allow you to put multiple discs in a thinner case), and I'd gladly pay good money for that.

Although, again, no new format matters if they keep screwing us over with poorly mixed/mastered versions.

Actually this format will be fine if they don't charge extra for it, and it becomes the de facto standard for producing CDs (so in other words it completely replaces regular CDs but the change is transparent to the end user). They could possibly get by with charging more if they happened to stop molesting the recordings (which would be a noticeable improvement to people and they'd probably think it was due to the new format).

I assume it follows the same specs as redbook (which is what 20-20,000 and 16/44.1?).


SACD had a SAMPLE Rate of more than 1MHz! And a Bit Rate 10x higher than DVD-A. So, I am suspicious that Sony may try to match or exceed this capability. I also suspect that HDMI over COAX or TOSLINK SPDIF to digtally transport the music to your external decoders or receiver. (Of course, multichannel Analog still is and will always remain an option.)


If they are based on Blu-Disc media, 60GB is a lot of room for musical data. I'd speculate that like DVD-A, you could get different versions of the same album- 7.1, 5.1, 2-ch high bit rate, and possibly photographic track info that is displayed on the front of your receiver (Pioneer Elite SC09TX)
 

thomsbrain

Lifer
Dec 4, 2001
18,148
1
0
These are just Redbook CDs with sharper pressing. You get the exact same 44.1 kHz, 16-bit PCM stream. So given the same DACs, you will have identical sound. Identical.

WHY? WHY? WHY?

They need to cut the bullshit and simply offer regular Blu-Ray discs with photo/art slideshows set to 7.1 Dolby TrueHD or DTS-HD Master Audio streams of the album's music. They will play and be decoded on everyone's existing Blu-Ray setups and offer significantly improved sound quality over CD's. No more compatibility issues. No more confusion. Everybody wins.

Grooger, SACD was a 2.8 MHz, 1-bit DSD format. Don't confuse bit depth with sampling rate. DSD and PCM use different methods for tracking audio waves.
 

sdifox

No Lifer
Sep 30, 2005
94,934
15,083
126
Originally posted by: Googer
Originally posted by: darkswordsman17
WTF is this? Its just regular CDs made higher quality? While there's nothing really wrong with that, I think it will fail for two reasons: yet another format that people won't understand, the higher quality of the disc won't matter if they keep fucking with the data they put on it.

I would much rather see them make an actual BD-R based format. The coating should hopefully help it last quite a while. Stick high quality versions, redbook, lossless surround, maybe binaural (partner with Dolby and slap Dolby Headphone on it for marketing), don't skimp on the packaging (think vinyl size which would allow you to put multiple discs in a thinner case), and I'd gladly pay good money for that.

Although, again, no new format matters if they keep screwing us over with poorly mixed/mastered versions.

Actually this format will be fine if they don't charge extra for it, and it becomes the de facto standard for producing CDs (so in other words it completely replaces regular CDs but the change is transparent to the end user). They could possibly get by with charging more if they happened to stop molesting the recordings (which would be a noticeable improvement to people and they'd probably think it was due to the new format).

I assume it follows the same specs as redbook (which is what 20-20,000 and 16/44.1?).


SACD had a SAMPLE Rate of more than 1MHz! And a Bit Rate 10x higher than DVD-A. So, I am suspicious that Sony may try to match or exceed this capability. I also suspect that HDMI over COAX or TOSLINK SPDIF to digtally transport the music to your external decoders or receiver. (Of course, multichannel Analog still is and will always remain an option.)


If they are based on Blu-Disc media, 60GB is a lot of room for musical data. I'd speculate that like DVD-A, you could get different versions of the same album- 7.1, 5.1, 2-ch high bit rate, and possibly photographic track info that is displayed on the front of your receiver (Pioneer Elite SC09TX)

DSD's 1bit sampling is just silly. You essentially have a critical path where 1 failure screws your entire chain. That idea was not new and was abandoned because it sucks. Ask the sound engineers.
 

erwos

Diamond Member
Apr 7, 2005
4,778
0
76
Originally posted by: thomsbrain
They need to cut the bullshit and simply offer regular Blu-Ray discs with photo/art slideshows set to 7.1 Dolby TrueHD or DTS-HD Master Audio streams of the album's music. They will play and be decoded on everyone's existing Blu-Ray setups and offer significantly improved sound quality over CD's. No more compatibility issues. No more confusion. Everybody wins.
You may be pleased to know that Sony is a step ahead of you.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B...y_Disc#Player_profiles

Profile 3.0 is BD-Audio.
 

Googer

Lifer
Nov 11, 2004
12,571
4
81
Originally posted by: thomsbrain
These are just Redbook CDs with sharper pressing. You get the exact same 44.1 kHz, 16-bit PCM stream. So given the same DACs, you will have identical sound. Identical.

WHY? WHY? WHY?

They need to cut the bullshit and simply offer regular Blu-Ray discs with photo/art slideshows set to 7.1 Dolby TrueHD or DTS-HD Master Audio streams of the album's music. They will play and be decoded on everyone's existing Blu-Ray setups and offer significantly improved sound quality over CD's. No more compatibility issues. No more confusion. Everybody wins.

Grooger, SACD was a 2.8 MHz, 1-bit DSD format. Don't confuse bit depth with sampling rate. DSD and PCM use different methods for tracking audio waves.

I could not remember that. But I did get off my lazy arse to look it up. The sample rate is 64x higher than Redbook-CD.
 

Arkaign

Lifer
Oct 27, 2006
20,736
1,377
126
This will never work. Music is at the point movies will be at in 8-10 years. Physical media is nearing the end of its run as a delivery method for video and audio. Blu-Ray for movies makes sense for the near and interim future because the vast capacity required is unrealistic to transfer even over very fast internet connections, and so much of the nation is unserved by the ~100mbit+ fibre necessary to make on-demand full 1080p HD feasible.

Audio, OTOH, is entirely reasonable to have flawless tracks at truly ridiculous quality downloadable quickly and cheaply.

Mark my words, Apple will launch Itunes HD, and the vast army of Apple/iPod acolytes will move to it.

A new physical music medium will make 95+% of the country go 'eh'? Their cars have CD players already, often with iPod connectors. Upgrading OEM car stereos to play new special HD audio is unrealistic as far as getting a new standard entrenched enough to gain momentum.

The CD took many years to take over from audio cassette, and that was chiefly because audio cassettes were both poor in quality and inconvenient to use (can't skip to track, have to flip them, etc). The average consumer virtually demanded a better product than cassettes. The average consumer will not demand a new physical replacement for audio cd. They will want better iTunes, and the ability to burn/use their music in their existing setups.

<--- I'm not even an Ipod owner, but I can see the writing on the wall with this one.
 
Mar 11, 2004
23,070
5,545
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Originally posted by: Arkaign
This will never work. Music is at the point movies will be at in 8-10 years. Physical media is nearing the end of its run as a delivery method for video and audio. Blu-Ray for movies makes sense for the near and interim future because the vast capacity required is unrealistic to transfer even over very fast internet connections, and so much of the nation is unserved by the ~100mbit+ fibre necessary to make on-demand full 1080p HD feasible.

Audio, OTOH, is entirely reasonable to have flawless tracks at truly ridiculous quality downloadable quickly and cheaply.

Mark my words, Apple will launch Itunes HD, and the vast army of Apple/iPod acolytes will move to it.

A new physical music medium will make 95+% of the country go 'eh'? Their cars have CD players already, often with iPod connectors. Upgrading OEM car stereos to play new special HD audio is unrealistic as far as getting a new standard entrenched enough to gain momentum.

The CD took many years to take over from audio cassette, and that was chiefly because audio cassettes were both poor in quality and inconvenient to use (can't skip to track, have to flip them, etc). The average consumer virtually demanded a better product than cassettes. The average consumer will not demand a new physical replacement for audio cd. They will want better iTunes, and the ability to burn/use their music in their existing setups.

<--- I'm not even an Ipod owner, but I can see the writing on the wall with this one.

I don't think this is meant to be a mass market format. It's an enthusiast format, but doesn't seem to hold any real advantages for them, and even the enthusiast market is splintered these days (vinyl, FLAC to say a Squeezebox, DVD-A, SACD, regular CDs, etc).

I also don't think we'll be seeing an iTunes HD for music, certainly not anytime soon. Their current setup is fine for the average user who will frown at the higher price and negligible sound quality improvement on their iPod with stock earbuds.

The average consumer never wants them to change formats (cause they feel its just a gimmick to get them to buy new stuff), so that's a silly argument. Like you said it took a long time for CDs and DVDs to overtake cassettes despite offering many advantages. Look at how long HD is taking and how long it takes people to buy a new game console.

I think digital distribution certainly is the future, but it is still a ways off in the sense that we won't be seeing actual high quality (say 24 bit, 96/192, surround, or probably even lossless) for a while. Definitely not any in large quantities. I'd love to be wrong, but I just don't see it happening. Plus the RIAA will want to DRM the hell out of it and probably tie it to some shitty product that the people who want high quality won't want.
 

Arkaign

Lifer
Oct 27, 2006
20,736
1,377
126
I see your point on iTunes, but Apple regularly introduces new iPod revisions already. Gen2, Gen3, etc, etc. They can use iTunes w/HD capability as a marketing tool to help sales of a new release without having to reinvent the wheel. Further, they can do something like offer HD upgrades to existing iTunes purchases for a reduced cost, and offer dual-format downloads for the future as they expand their HD audio library.

I think it's the only way that credible progress can be made in a widely available music delivery medium. Sadly, quality really seemed to peak with records and 8-tracks for a widely available consumer media. Granted, not everyone had the top-quality equipment to take advantage, but the capacity was there. CDs are too limited, cassettes were awful, and the SACD/DVD-A were too niche.
 

Googer

Lifer
Nov 11, 2004
12,571
4
81
Originally posted by: Arkaign
This will never work. Music is at the point movies will be at in 8-10 years. Physical media is nearing the end of its run as a delivery method for video and audio. Blu-Ray for movies makes sense for the near and interim future because the vast capacity required is unrealistic to transfer even over very fast internet connections, and so much of the nation is unserved by the ~100mbit+ fibre necessary to make on-demand full 1080p HD feasible.

Audio, OTOH, is entirely reasonable to have flawless tracks at truly ridiculous quality downloadable quickly and cheaply.

Mark my words, Apple will launch Itunes HD, and the vast army of Apple/iPod acolytes will move to it.

A new physical music medium will make 95+% of the country go 'eh'? Their cars have CD players already, often with iPod connectors. Upgrading OEM car stereos to play new special HD audio is unrealistic as far as getting a new standard entrenched enough to gain momentum.

The CD took many years to take over from audio cassette, and that was chiefly because audio cassettes were both poor in quality and inconvenient to use (can't skip to track, have to flip them, etc). The average consumer virtually demanded a better product than cassettes. The average consumer will not demand a new physical replacement for audio cd. They will want better iTunes, and the ability to burn/use their music in their existing setups.

<--- I'm not even an Ipod owner, but I can see the writing on the wall with this one.

  1. The CD dominance took slightly more than a decade and that was because the cost of the players was very high and portable units were expensive an uncommon. The tape deck was found in almost every home and most cars of the time (even through the 1990's). Right now, Blu-media is on the same track as tape. there are not too many Blu-Ray players out and many people are saying they want to stick with their DVD's for now, just like people said about cassette. Given time, Blu-media could take over as long as the DRM remains fair and unobtrusive to the consumer.
  2. I don't entierly agree with your last statement. One Blu-disc can hold as much as one iPOD (for le$$) with 400-1,000GB Blu-disc technology planned, this media could have a future.
 

Googer

Lifer
Nov 11, 2004
12,571
4
81
Originally posted by: darkswordsman17
Originally posted by: Arkaign
This will never work. Music is at the point movies will be at in 8-10 years. Physical media is nearing the end of its run as a delivery method for video and audio. Blu-Ray for movies makes sense for the near and interim future because the vast capacity required is unrealistic to transfer even over very fast internet connections, and so much of the nation is unserved by the ~100mbit+ fibre necessary to make on-demand full 1080p HD feasible.

Audio, OTOH, is entirely reasonable to have flawless tracks at truly ridiculous quality downloadable quickly and cheaply.

Mark my words, Apple will launch Itunes HD, and the vast army of Apple/iPod acolytes will move to it.

A new physical music medium will make 95+% of the country go 'eh'? Their cars have CD players already, often with iPod connectors. Upgrading OEM car stereos to play new special HD audio is unrealistic as far as getting a new standard entrenched enough to gain momentum.

The CD took many years to take over from audio cassette, and that was chiefly because audio cassettes were both poor in quality and inconvenient to use (can't skip to track, have to flip them, etc). The average consumer virtually demanded a better product than cassettes. The average consumer will not demand a new physical replacement for audio cd. They will want better iTunes, and the ability to burn/use their music in their existing setups.

<--- I'm not even an Ipod owner, but I can see the writing on the wall with this one.

I don't think this is meant to be a mass market format. It's an enthusiast format, but doesn't seem to hold any real advantages for them, and even the enthusiast market is splintered these days (vinyl, FLAC to say a Squeezebox, DVD-A, SACD, regular CDs, etc).

I also don't think we'll be seeing an iTunes HD for music, certainly not anytime soon. Their current setup is fine for the average user who will frown at the higher price and negligible sound quality improvement on their iPod with stock earbuds.

The average consumer never wants them to change formats (cause they feel its just a gimmick to get them to buy new stuff), so that's a silly argument. Like you said it took a long time for CDs and DVDs to overtake cassettes despite offering many advantages. Look at how long HD is taking and how long it takes people to buy a new game console.

I think digital distribution certainly is the future, but it is still a ways off in the sense that we won't be seeing actual high quality (say 24 bit, 96/192, surround, or probably even lossless) for a while. Definitely not any in large quantities. I'd love to be wrong, but I just don't see it happening. Plus the RIAA will want to DRM the hell out of it and probably tie it to some shitty product that the people who want high quality won't want.

Originally posted by: Arkaign
CDs are too limited, cassettes were awful, and the SACD/DVD-A were too niche.


We're certainly taking small steps backwards. Reverse compatibility with existing hardware will be the saving grace for any future hi-definition medium. If the SACD books mandated Hybrid Discs, even my grandmother would be buying her Lawerence Welk on SACD to use in her Durabrand CD player.
 

Arkaign

Lifer
Oct 27, 2006
20,736
1,377
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Those are certainly some good points. A big boat was missed (time to launch would have ideally been late 90s to early 00s, for a backwards-compatible improved-quality Audio CD to be released. CDs are declining though. I still think Apple will move to a higher-quality standard, having downloads available in both formats (essentially, backwards-compatibility that doesn't leave existing iPod owners in the cold), and taking advantage of portability/deliverability that the iTunes and digital delivery system offers.

Yes, BR has a tremendous storage capacity, but I don't think that applies too much towards an audio standard. BR (and the late HDDVD) are fantastic for content which requires obscene amounts of storage, such as full HD films. Audio really doesn't need tens of GBs for one artist/disc, and if you're thinking of using a read/write system so that you could use it to accumulate media on, I don't think that's in the cards either. Music's future lies in digital delivery, no physical medium, and playable on portable players with no moving parts whatsoever. SSDS and flash, along with further developments in solid-state storage are dominating roadmaps of how we work with portable data for the forseeable future, until truly global wireless hits somewhere down the horizon. Once we reach that stage, no local or portable storage will ever be necessary, everything we have rights to access will always be available. That is probably ~25 years out though.
 

themisfit610

Golden Member
Apr 16, 2006
1,352
2
81
What about Vudu?

Their HDX service is quite near BluRay quality, and though it doesn't stream, the movies will comfortably download in a few hours over a cable modem.

To me, this type of thing represents the future of media delivery.
 

Googer

Lifer
Nov 11, 2004
12,571
4
81
Originally posted by: themisfit610
What about Vudu?

Their HDX service is quite near BluRay quality, and though it doesn't stream, the movies will comfortably download in a few hours over a cable modem.

To me, this type of thing represents the future of media delivery.

I can really appreciate the benefits of a Tangible media like CD, DVD, or Blu-ray. It's nice to know that I can take my program and move it seemlessly from one macnine to another. It's also nice to know that if I drop my iPOD, I don't loose 100,000 hours and thousands of dollars of music all at one time, because I still have the disc at home. It's nice to know that my CD is DRM free. I can at any time transfer my music from one device to another with out much DRM hassle.

It gives me comfort to know that my music or movie is protected from HDD failure, bit rot, and to some degree- theft. A stolen iPOD is a bigger headache than one or two stolen CDs.

 
Mar 11, 2004
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I think we'll actually see people rebel against digital distribution. There's just something about physical media when it comes to music that makes it so much more. I've seen some who have said that actually their reason for going back to vinyl is the sleeves and the feel of putting a record on. I know its silly, but it something that can't be overlooked. Sadly, its kinda fallen to the wayside, much like making an album instead of just a bunch of songs.

Personally, I enjoy both. There's a lot of songs that I like listening to, but sometimes I just feel like putting on one of my favorite albums, and just sitting back and listening to it.

I see no reason they can't coexist. I'd just like to see them put more effort into the physical media side.
 

Slick5150

Diamond Member
Nov 10, 2001
8,760
3
81
Considering most people are listening to their music on their crappy iPod earbuds, or their equally crappy car radio speakers, I don't think an increase in sampling rate over conventional CDs is something they are particularly concerned about.
 

Arkaign

Lifer
Oct 27, 2006
20,736
1,377
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Originally posted by: Slick5150
Considering most people are listening to their music on their crappy iPod earbuds, or their equally crappy car radio speakers, I don't think an increase in sampling rate over conventional CDs is something they are particularly concerned about.

I think this is also true, but never underestimate Apple marketing. For all the gens of iPod, it would be child's play for them to make a new gen to help insulate their supremacy in digitally delivered music. 'High-Def' is en vogue right now, regardless of people's knowledge or lack thereof in actually getting a superior image or sound through their often substandard equipment manufactured with dollar-a-week labor in Asia.
 

thomsbrain

Lifer
Dec 4, 2001
18,148
1
0
Originally posted by: erwos
Originally posted by: thomsbrain
They need to cut the bullshit and simply offer regular Blu-Ray discs with photo/art slideshows set to 7.1 Dolby TrueHD or DTS-HD Master Audio streams of the album's music. They will play and be decoded on everyone's existing Blu-Ray setups and offer significantly improved sound quality over CD's. No more compatibility issues. No more confusion. Everybody wins.
You may be pleased to know that Sony is a step ahead of you.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B...y_Disc#Player_profiles

Profile 3.0 is BD-Audio.

Sweet. Now give me some media!
 

erwos

Diamond Member
Apr 7, 2005
4,778
0
76
Originally posted by: thomsbrain
Originally posted by: erwos
Originally posted by: thomsbrain
They need to cut the bullshit and simply offer regular Blu-Ray discs with photo/art slideshows set to 7.1 Dolby TrueHD or DTS-HD Master Audio streams of the album's music. They will play and be decoded on everyone's existing Blu-Ray setups and offer significantly improved sound quality over CD's. No more compatibility issues. No more confusion. Everybody wins.
You may be pleased to know that Sony is a step ahead of you.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B...y_Disc#Player_profiles

Profile 3.0 is BD-Audio.

Sweet. Now give me some media!
That's the same way I feel. :) I'm very disappointed at the poor support for SACD, DVD-A, and BD-Audio. I genuinely do think that high-end multichannel audio has a future.

That said, there are 1.0/1.1 discs that are concert recordings - some of which are quite good.