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 Post subject: Should I use 44.1kHz or 88.2kHz sampling rate?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 2:28 am 

Joined: Tue Oct 11, 2011 9:00 am
Posts: 70
Hello, I have read countless articles on this in the past, such as Dan Lavry's "White Papers" and Xiph.Org's article on sampling rate, but I have yet to find an explanation that applies more to my setup.

I am an electronic musician, I do not record anything live and I am entirely inside of the box in Ableton and mainly use vst synths. I have absolutely no interest in keeping small file sizes or putting my stuff on a CD, I just want my stuff to be top quality at the cost of any "convenience". I use a decent amount of samples however, (mostly Ableton Suite pack samples) and they are usually at 16/24 44.1kHZ. Based on my reading, Dan Lavry says that 60kHz (or 88.2kHz being the next closest option) is the optimum sampling rate for audio quality, but Xiph.Org says that anything over 44.1kHz will only introduce distortion.

My question is, is there any reason I shouldn't just set and render with Ableton Live to 88.2kHz? I don't really understand how upsampling my samples will affect them or how that affects my vsts, but from Mr. Lavry's papers and many many articles I've read, 44.1kHz isn't as good in audio quality (however insignificant) as 88.2kHz is (or even 48kHz which is dvd standard).

This has been bugging me for a really long time now and the amount of confusion and arguments surrounding something so objective astounds me, so any advice or input would really help. Thank you.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I use 44.1kHz or 88.2kHz sampling rate?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 10:03 am 

Joined: Wed Nov 14, 2007 1:48 am
Posts: 110
Location: DeutschLand
If the plugs are in 44.1 use 44.1. There is no reason for you (as you do not record anyway) to set Live to 88.2. If you would record I could understand it somewhat, but even then 88 kHz is IMHO absurd. If you want a higher resolution 48 kHz is just fine. I keep my work at 48, and when it's time to make a cd it converts it anyway down to 44.1.
The sampling rate derived from the "old days" when disk space was scarce. CD's would only have half the amount of audio if they were in 88.2. It became a standard with the thought that the human ear can not (at a certain age) hear frequencies higher than 22kHz. Doubling the kHz to 44.1 gave it a 'headroom' of double that.
It just means that at 44.1kHz there are 44,100 samples per second. A frequency of 22 kHz gets (theoretically) gets then 2 x 16 bit samples.
Ahhh man, just look it up :
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/44,100_Hz

Have fun.

Edit: Whatever sample rate you use, keep them the same through your workflow/system. e.g. :Set your interface to the same rate.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I use 44.1kHz or 88.2kHz sampling rate?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 12:22 pm 

Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 11:10 pm
Posts: 9953
if your computer can handle it .. use 88/96

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 Post subject: Re: Should I use 44.1kHz or 88.2kHz sampling rate?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 1:40 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 14, 2007 1:48 am
Posts: 110
Location: DeutschLand
3dot... wrote:
if your computer can handle it .. use 88/96

Almost any computer can handle it, but not every sound interface.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I use 44.1kHz or 88.2kHz sampling rate?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 1:41 pm 

Joined: Fri Aug 29, 2008 5:30 pm
Posts: 677
Some people claim rates like 88.2 and 96 have more air in the high end. That's up to your ears to decide.

Much more important than bit rate is bit depth...i.e. 24 bit does sound better than 16 while you're manipulating the audio.

Once it's mixed and mastered to a CD or mp3, 44.1/16 is fine.

Keep in mind that all of this stuff depends on your playback setup and room acoustics. Most important of all is your speakers (or headphones), if you're listening on crappy speakers the subtleties between analog and digital, high bit rates and low bit rates, lossless vs.compressed is all easily lost.

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 Post subject: Re: Should I use 44.1kHz or 88.2kHz sampling rate?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 2:06 pm 

Joined: Fri Jul 01, 2005 7:06 am
Posts: 872
http://varietyofsound.wordpress.com/201 ... ing-rates/

It's worth noting that, in case you don't know the dude writing the article, he's one of the most accomplished DSP coders around at the moment.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I use 44.1kHz or 88.2kHz sampling rate?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 3:17 pm 

Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 11:10 pm
Posts: 9953
RhinoInRio wrote:
3dot... wrote:
if your computer can handle it .. use 88/96

Almost any computer can handle it, but not every sound interface.

if he's maxing out cpu with his current 44100 projects..
then doubling the cpu processing probably won't help the sound any..

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 Post subject: Re: Should I use 44.1kHz or 88.2kHz sampling rate?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 3:43 pm 

Joined: Tue Oct 11, 2011 9:00 am
Posts: 70
RhinoInRio wrote:
If the plugs are in 44.1 use 44.1. There is no reason for you (as you do not record anyway) to set Live to 88.2. If you would record I could understand it somewhat, but even then 88 kHz is IMHO absurd. If you want a higher resolution 48 kHz is just fine. I keep my work at 48, and when it's time to make a cd it converts it anyway down to 44.1.
The sampling rate derived from the "old days" when disk space was scarce. CD's would only have half the amount of audio if they were in 88.2. It became a standard with the thought that the human ear can not (at a certain age) hear frequencies higher than 22kHz. Doubling the kHz to 44.1 gave it a 'headroom' of double that.
It just means that at 44.1kHz there are 44,100 samples per second. A frequency of 22 kHz gets (theoretically) gets then 2 x 16 bit samples.
Ahhh man, just look it up :
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/44,100_Hz

Have fun.

Edit: Whatever sample rate you use, keep them the same through your workflow/system. e.g. :Set your interface to the same rate.


Almost all plugins have oversampling and I don't believe a plugin can be at a set sampling rate, it is based on your daw. So if you're DAW is set to 88.2 you're plugin should be as well, otherwise I fail to see the point of oversampling. And I did "look it up", I mentioned a few articles that go far more in depth than what you just "explained". Inaudible frequencies matter more than you seem to understand. Not to mention by your logic 48KhZ has no place, and yet everybody seems fine with it because its a standard even though it trumps the logic of not using anything past 44.1kHz.

@doghouse Your second half of your post explains why the first half doesn't make sense. If you have a bad setup and bad ears, then "what sounds good" has no place. I'm trying to understand from an objective point of view what is better. Why learn anything if "using your ears" makes you Mozart. And as I said I have no interest in CD which is why I don't want to delve into "16bit 44.1khz is fine".

@3Dot My CPU is 4.5ghz quad core and my audio interface can handle 88.2 so the problem for me is just trying to understand the objective difference between the two.

@NokatusThank you for the article. The only thing that makes me question his credibility is I don't understand why hes using 96k instead of 88.2kHz though because that should be more ineffective. It is farther from Lavry's ideal and also not "clean math" for people who upsample/downsample to 44.1kHz before or after. He is also implying to go as high as your computer can handle, which is ludicrous because it's been proven by everybody that 192kHz is not only useless but detrimental to your audio quality because there is always a tradeoff.

Thanks for the replies so far guys.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I use 44.1kHz or 88.2kHz sampling rate?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 3:59 pm 

Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 11:10 pm
Posts: 9953
Andreilg3 wrote:
it's been proven by everybody

say what?

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 Post subject: Re: Should I use 44.1kHz or 88.2kHz sampling rate?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 4:42 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 14, 2007 1:48 am
Posts: 110
Location: DeutschLand
Andreilg3 wrote:
... than what you just "explained". Inaudible frequencies matter more than you seem to understand. Not to mention by your logic 48KhZ has no place, and yet everybody seems fine with it because its a standard even though it trumps the logic of not using anything past 44.1kHz.


So.... what is your question?
It seems you're the expert.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I use 44.1kHz or 88.2kHz sampling rate?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 10:11 pm 

Joined: Tue Oct 11, 2011 9:00 am
Posts: 70
3dot... wrote:
Andreilg3 wrote:
it's been proven by everybody

say what?


http://people.xiph.org/~xiphmont/demo/neil-young.html
http://www.lavryengineering.com/pdfs/la ... _audio.pdf

Kind've sad that you people seem to actually believe marketing gimmicks that debunk basic audio knowledge.

And my question here is "Is there any scientific reasoning behind why 88.2kHz would be worse than 44.1kHz?". As you can see in the articles above, Monty says that anything above 44.1kHz is detrimental to audio quality whereas Dan Lavry says that 60kHz (88.2kHz being closest) is optimal. Neither of which go into the real science of why, unless I'm missing something.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I use 44.1kHz or 88.2kHz sampling rate?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 12:52 am 

Joined: Fri Jul 01, 2005 7:06 am
Posts: 872
Andreilg3 wrote:
Kind've sad that you people seem to actually believe marketing gimmicks that debunk basic audio knowledge.


The mistake you make is the same some people (the first commentator) make in the comments section of the article I linked to. For example, the paper you posted ("The optimal sample rate for quality audio") deals with recording audio and representing the recorded subject with the highest fidelity possible. The article I posted makes the point that the actual processing one uses in a typical ITB situation benefits far more from high sample rates than the actual recording process.

Those are two entirely different things, and usually the argumentation is skewed in the direction of "if it can't perceivably add _recording quality_, it's most likely a gimmick that goes against basic audio knowledge" ;), which itself is pretty short sighted and uneducated.

There's so much more going on in an actual production situation than merely recording stuff and then playing it back. In reality, people do all kinds of crazy shit with audio, and recording quality is only a part of the picture.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I use 44.1kHz or 88.2kHz sampling rate?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 1:12 am 

Joined: Tue Oct 11, 2011 9:00 am
Posts: 70
Nokatus wrote:
Andreilg3 wrote:
Kind've sad that you people seem to actually believe marketing gimmicks that debunk basic audio knowledge.


The mistake you make is the same some people (the first commentator) make in the comments section of the article I linked to. For example, the paper you posted ("The optimal sample rate for quality audio") deals with recording audio and representing the recorded subject with the highest fidelity possible. The article I posted makes the point that the actual processing one uses in a typical ITB situation benefits far more from high sample rates than the actual recording process.

Those are two entirely different things, and usually the argumentation is skewed in the direction of "if it can't perceivably add _recording quality_, it's most likely a gimmick that goes against basic audio knowledge" ;), which itself is pretty short sighted and uneducated.

There's so much more going on in an actual production situation than merely recording stuff and then playing it back. In reality, people do all kinds of crazy shit with audio, and recording quality is only a part of the picture.


So what does that mean? That all projects should be rendered at 192kHz but all audio be recorded at 88.2 for optimum audio quality?


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 Post subject: Re: Should I use 44.1kHz or 88.2kHz sampling rate?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 1:20 am 

Joined: Sat Dec 18, 2004 9:43 pm
Posts: 582
Location: Minneapolis
RhinoInRio wrote:
The sampling rate derived from the "old days" when disk space was scarce. CD's would only have half the amount of audio if they were in 88.2. It became a standard with the thought that the human ear can not (at a certain age) hear frequencies higher than 22kHz. Doubling the kHz to 44.1 gave it a 'headroom' of double that.


Just a quick point of clarification: the maximum frequency that can be represented by a sample rate is half the sampling rate.

Doubling to 44.1 kHz wasn't to give 'headroom,' it was so that a maximum frequency of 22.05 kHz could be represented, roughly equal to the upper limit of human hearing.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nyquist_rate


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 Post subject: Re: Should I use 44.1kHz or 88.2kHz sampling rate?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 2:23 am 

Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 11:10 pm
Posts: 9953
http://jn.physiology.org/content/83/6/3548.full#SEC4
http://www.digitalprosound.com/Htm/Soap ... Apogee.htm

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