16 bit or not 16 bit, that is the question

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16 bit or not 16 bit, that is the question

Postby RickTarrant » Fri Mar 11, 2016 22:23

Hi guys,

I normally at 48-24. Some clients need files at 44/6

When I mix and select "SRC and ReDithering - 44100/16bits/TPDH" - the resulting file is 44100 /24. This is indicated in the Media MGT window as well as in RX5.
I get the same result when I right click on a mix in MM and select "Sampling Rate Conversion" (44/16)
The resulting file is at 24 bits.

I have DITHER turned OFF on the SONNOX Limiter - thinking the dither in Pyramix was all I need.
Am I missing a step? Should I DITHER to 16bit in the limiter first?

Rick
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Re: 16 bit or not 16 bit, that is the question

Postby fl » Sat Mar 12, 2016 18:46

RickTarrant wrote:When I mix and select "SRC and ReDithering - 44100/16bits/TPDH" - the resulting file is 44100 /24.


Occasionally I make an error when performing a mixdown where I want the result to be in a different sample rate and word length than the host project. It's not enough to check the SRC and Redithering Checkbox with your desired settings, you have to also change the "Media Wordlength" dropdown menu to the desired wordlength. If you don't make this last setting, all you'll be doing is applying dither suitable for 16 bit output, but the output will remain 24 bit, the same as your project, only with a raised noise floor (from the dither). In short, there is dithering, and there is wordlength change - two separate operations which don't necessarily happen together, unless you apply all the necessary settings.

Of course, once you have applied the 16 bit suitable dither, you can safely truncate the file(s) to 16 bit, as can easily be done in RX.

I get the same result when I right click on a mix in MM and select "Sampling Rate Conversion" (44/16)
The resulting file is at 24 bits.


SRC in the Media Manager could certainly be presented better by the program. As it is, there are two methods of applying sample rate change, one through the Media Manager > Convert Menu > Sampling Rate Conversion function, and the other through the Media Manager > Convert Menu > Quick Convert > Resampler and/or Wordlength Converter. If you've had no luck with one method, try the other. In either case, you'll see a little pop-up window for the conversion which has a "Properties" button, which is where you make the actual settings required to get what you desire. Having this all buried in behind a button in a pop-up from a menu command in a Tab, is more than a little obscure, to say the least.

I have DITHER turned OFF on the SONNOX Limiter - thinking the dither in Pyramix was all I need.
Am I missing a step? Should I DITHER to 16bit in the limiter first?


Yes, there certainly are a lot of dithering options available, made even more complex by various plugins offering to do the job, so it's easy to get confused. However, the rule of thumb should be to only apply dither once, so however you decide to do it, do it that way and no other. However, as I said above, redithering does nothing besides adding noise to your file(s); adjusting the wordlength is a separate and distinct operation, so if you choose to do all this in the Mixdown window in Pyramix, remember that you have to enable two settings, the "SRC and Redithering" checkbox will let you adjust the mode of SRC, and determine the output SR, while also letting you tailor the details of the shape and amount of dither noise to be added, but the actual wordlength of the output will be determined by the "Media Wordlength" dropdown menu setting.
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Re: 16 bit or not 16 bit, that is the question

Postby RickTarrant » Thu Mar 24, 2016 19:15

Thanks Frank,

I was missing the 2nd step of changing the Word Length in the pull down window.

Not sure what I was missing in the Media Manager because the Right-Click-Convert seems to be working fine now.
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Rick Tarrant
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Windows 10 Pro 64
Pyramix 10.2 [native]
Gigabyte GA-Z170X-UD3
CPU i7 6700K
RAM 32GB DDR4
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Posts: 159
Joined: Wed May 12, 2010 23:07
Location: Memphis, Tennessee - USA


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