BAS Message
May 2013

1. I sent the following reply to a Stereophile letter saying that the lower noise level of digital actually gave more audio resolution than analog:
In the May 2013 issue letters column, Dr. Shawn Hunt writes about the resolution of analog versus digital. He makes a valid argument about signal to noise, but really misses the point.

When people talk about the superior resolution of analog, they generally are referring to the continuous of nature of analog compared with the alleged “stairstep” quality of digital—-no matter how many bits you use you can never match the quality of analog.

In fact if proper dither (low level noise) is used during the recording process, digital is continuous just like analog, even to the lowest levels. This is true whether you have 1 bit or 24. Only the noise level changes, decreasing as the bit depth increases. This can be proven mathematically and is not subject to argument. For consumer media, 16 bits is more than ample, giving 100 dB or so of S/N using shaped noise.

Audiophiles may prefer the sound of analog for a variety of reasons, but inherent granularity of digital audio is not one of them.

There are auditory examples of the effect of dither included on the Audio Engineering Society's Digital Audio Educational CD. It also includes a paper by Stanley Lipshitz which discusses this in detail.

2. Received:
We have created a new Audio Forum, dedicated to the passion of high end audio in a friendly environment. The forum is located at and it is FREE to join. I would greatly appreciate it if you would let your members know about We discuss everything from amplifiers to speakers. From phono stages to digital audio, and of course, our passion for music.
Thank you in advance,
Michael Bovaird

email me here


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updated 6/19/13