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#1849938 - 12/02/07 08:30 AM Surround MP3s
HA! Offline
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Registered: 11/30/07
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Has anyone had success with 5.1 MP3s?

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#1851145 - 12/04/07 07:54 AM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: HA!]
Griffinator Offline
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I presume you're referring to this:

http://www.iis.fraunhofer.de/EN/bf/amm/projects/spatial/enso/tech.jsp

It's not a 5.1 MP3, it's "virtual surround" from a stereo MP3.

If you have other info, I'd love to see it, although a lossy, compressed format like MP3 is not exactly what I'd call ideal for quality surround...

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#1851211 - 12/04/07 10:22 AM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Griffinator]
stuart Offline
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Hi,

It takes 6 files to encode the surround MP3. It sounds best when using stereo headphones as it converts or translates the 5 channels to virtual speaker locations: L,C,R,Ls,Rs in stereo soundfield.

Here's a good description: http://www.iis.fraunhofer.de/EN/bf/amm/projects/spatial/index.jsp

You can download the player and encoder here: http://www.all4mp3.com/

There are some MP3s you can listen to here: http://www.all4mp3.com/music/
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#1851220 - 12/04/07 10:43 AM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Griffinator]
stuart Offline
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Hi Griffinator

 Originally Posted By: Griffinator
I presume you're referring to this:
http://www.iis.fraunhofer.de/EN/bf/amm/projects/spatial/enso/tech.jsp
It's not a 5.1 MP3, it's "virtual surround" from a stereo MP3.


I think you are talking about the MP3SX: http://www.all4mp3.com/info/mp3sx.html

"Surround sound in the living room is not science fiction any more: Multi-channel loudspeaker set-ups today are popular for the home cinema, and surround music content is starting to become available. However, most of the content out there still is just stereo. To get most out of that stereo material on a surround setup, Fraunhofer IIS introduces MP3 SX (MP3 Stereo eXtended), a new MP3 Surround flavor. MP3 SX enhances MP3 files from stereo to surround sound without changing the original stereo MP3 quality"

You can download it here:
http://www.all4mp3.com/tools/sw_fhg_demo.html

The MP3's sound pretty good as long as you encode at high bitrate.
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#1851289 - 12/04/07 01:24 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: stuart]
Griffinator Offline
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http://www.iis.fraunhofer.de/fhg/Images/introduction_to_mp3surround_tcm278-67347.pdf

OK, that's what you're talking about.

Interesting, but again, it's not a recording format - it's a playback format.

Primary focus around here is on the production end, not the usage end.

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#1851455 - 12/04/07 07:09 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Griffinator]
HA! Offline
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You mix and master like you would any 5.1 music release. It is an MP3 5.1 mix on a computer audio or compatible home DVD player. It is not just a stereo surround enhancer thing.

Again, my question is has anyone had success with it? Is anyone mixing and mastering for it or other surround music CDs?

The issues that I have had when monitoring this MP3 format collapsed/processed stereo is that things do not stay in their proper place, and even with the playback contours on several players are funky.

Unless you know what you are talking about, or have done proper research, you shouldn't post and make yourself look stupid.


Edited by HA! (12/04/07 07:11 PM)

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#1851591 - 12/05/07 06:04 AM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: HA!]
Griffinator Offline
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That's kinda the point. It's a compressed, lossy, and apparently buggy "portable" surround mix. The people that I know around here that work in surround do full 24/96 WAV in the studio, and output to whatever format someone pays them to do.

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#1851735 - 12/05/07 09:58 AM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Griffinator]
HA! Offline
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You say:

The people that I know around here that work in surround do full 24/96 WAV in the studio, and output to whatever format someone pays them to do.

What does that have to do with the price of tea in China?

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#1851851 - 12/05/07 12:54 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: HA!]
Griffinator Offline
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So do you know of any record companies who are actively marketing 5.1 MP3's for sale? If not, you'll likely not see people here being hired to create 5.1 MP3's. Therefore, what I said about them outputting to whatever format someone pays them to is completely relevant to the discussion.

In short, unless someone comes off the bucks, a professional surround studio isn't going to produce 5.1 MP3's. They've got paying gigs in other formats, why would they bother?

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#1851856 - 12/05/07 01:00 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Griffinator]
Trucks Offline
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Well... All I really have to say is... I listen to MP3's on an MP3 player, which has 2 speakers which I insert into my ear.

I don't really get the point of a 5.1 mp3 mix....

What do you want to use it for HA? I'm interested to know..

I'm not trying to be an arse (well that comes natural), but what field of music is a 5.1 MP3 mix relevant?
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#1851865 - 12/05/07 01:16 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Trucks]
Griffinator Offline
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Trucks: my speculation right up front is that it's a way for folks to pass around MP3 rips of DVD-A productions, which are 24/96 MLP lossless 5.1 encoded.

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#1851868 - 12/05/07 01:19 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Griffinator]
Trucks Offline
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Ohhhhhhh Ok.

Then I would guess that nobody has had "commercial" success with 5.1 MP3's. But a torrent whore may very well have done. \:D
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#1851874 - 12/05/07 01:21 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Trucks]
Griffinator Offline
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I'm just saying I don't see any 5.1 MP3's for sale on iTunes, so I don't see where any pro studios are getting any revenue for producing them.

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#1851877 - 12/05/07 01:23 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Griffinator]
Trucks Offline
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Yeah, I know what you're saying, mate. :-)
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#1851924 - 12/05/07 02:23 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Griffinator]
HA! Offline
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Man, you have no idea what it is about. That wouldn't work. You must encode discrete tracks into the software, which converts it to a 5.1 MP3. It is an MP3 with two extra files is all. Go back to your headbangin'. While your at it, go over to the audio department at Falwell's place and get an education.

There ARE people selling surround MP3s. Since the labels didn't want MP3s to happen and didn't get behind iTunes and the other big 4 that they could not control, I don't think that they matter. They don't know what to do about anything right now, unless cashing in on greentrees is something special. This is indie world, where creativity counts.

The application I plan to use it for is bonus material, gaming and music.

I would like to consider it as a means to give the people something special for downloading from the band's site directly. We would still over enhanced CDs with music, EPK, lyrics and art.

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#1851927 - 12/05/07 02:26 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: HA!]
Trucks Offline
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Yeah I know, I have no idea what it is about! :-) It's why I asked! \:D Also from a google, all I could find was regarding DVDrips.

Your plan sounds pretty cool. Sorry I couldn't be more constructive! If you hit onto it good enough, you should be set, coz as far as I can tell, there aren't many people doing it already
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#1851928 - 12/05/07 02:26 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Griffinator]
HA! Offline
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 Originally Posted By: Griffinator
I'm just saying I don't see any 5.1 MP3's for sale on iTunes, so I don't see where any pro studios are getting any revenue for producing them.


They are for sale on other download services that accept pre converted files. iTunes wants total control, so they convert the files submitted to them. Since Apple didn't think of it, they won't embrace it. But, others have and do sell it. Many times it is not specified, and the only way to know that you are buying one is to try it. Again, it IS an MP3 with two extra files, so it will appear as an MP3 and play back in stereo.

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#1851931 - 12/05/07 02:27 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Trucks]
HA! Offline
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 Originally Posted By: Trucks
Yeah I know, I have no idea what it is about! :-) It's why I asked! \:D Also from a google, all I could find was regarding DVDrips.

Your plan sounds pretty cool. Sorry I couldn't be more constructive! If you hit onto it good enough, you should be set, coz as far as I can tell, there aren't many people doing it already


My comments were not directed at you. They were directed at the previous poster. Sorry. I should have quoted him.

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#1851937 - 12/05/07 02:32 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: HA!]
Griffinator Offline
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Dude, your hostility isn't endearing you to anyone.

It'd be easy to record the discrete channel information from an MLP-encoded 5.1 DVD-A - all it'd take is a player that had 5.1-channel analog outputs. So, tell me again how I couldn't rip a DVD-A to discrete, then to MP3 5.1?

BTW - Falwell's dead, and his crappy university doesn't have an audio department.

So, you getting paid tall dollars for encoding 5.1 MP3 on video games?

Again, you'll not find anyone on this forum working with 5.1 MP3 unless someone is paying them big money to do it, because that's what the regulars (the few that remain, anyway) on this forum do - predominantly, mixing and mastering surround audio for movies and DVD Music - for hire, not for fun, or personal use. I've been in a couple of their shops - you don't invest 5-6 figures into a studio to play around with personal projects, you do it to make money, and these guys (and a few gals) stay booked with paying gigs.

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#1851952 - 12/05/07 02:45 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Griffinator]
HA! Offline
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That is true. When I think of a rip, I think of software alone, not going through that trouble. But, if you WERE going through that trouble, why degrade it to MP3? If you have a surround system for your computer (which is the market for surround MP3s), then you also will likely have a DVD player as well. So why not just burn a copy of the DVD as is? Toast does that.

I am not pucnhing at you. Your logic in your responses is not well thought out.

Again, it has nothing to do with what you are saying. I don't care what people are being paid and not paid to do. I am looking for ways for indies (who sell around 50k units a year and make substantially more money than they ever would with a label) offer something new, something different, that would give the paying customers an edge over the pirated and low res MP3s.


Edited by HA! (12/05/07 02:48 PM)

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#1851964 - 12/05/07 02:54 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: HA!]
Griffinator Offline
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The only reason I keep hammering that point about the money?

Nothing to do with the format, everything to do with how much info you can hope to gain from peeps around here.

If no one here works in the format, then the answer to your original question would be "no, no one here has had success with 5.1 mp3's, because they haven't messed with them"

It's not intended to belittle you.

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#1851974 - 12/05/07 03:02 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Griffinator]
Griffinator Offline
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Oh - and to answer your objection about ripping DVD-A to 5.1 MP3....

Any computer can play DVD's too - but AVI is the preferred choice of illegal movie distributors everywhere - why? Because it's a much smaller filesize (1024x768 compressed avi is about 1/8th the size of a full DVD) and doesn't require mounting on a disc to view on your computer. It doesn't look as clean as real DVD, but they don't care, as long as it's free.

I imagine the same mindset would drive someone to do exactly as I described with a DVD-A....

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#1852370 - 12/06/07 11:35 AM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: HA!]
diatonis Offline
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 Originally Posted By: HA!
Again, my question is has anyone had success with it? Is anyone mixing and mastering for it or other surround music CDs?


Hi HA!

I have tried it in both headphone (Ensonido) and the mp3 surround player a while back and didn't notice the mains collapsing towards the center. I found the Ensonido player didn't quite have the separation I would have like. I don't sell mp3s using it because it says ...

"This evaluation software is for personal and non-commercial use and intended to demonstrate the MP3 Surround technology available at Fraunhofer IIS. "

But you can license it - more information here: http://mp3licensing.com/help/index.html#5

What are some of the MP3 stores selling Surround MP3s?
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#1852557 - 12/06/07 06:21 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: diatonis]
HA! Offline
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I am way ahead of you guys. I have the licensing taken care of.

CD Baby for one example has artists selling surrounf MP3s.


Edited by HA! (12/06/07 06:24 PM)

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#1873638 - 01/16/08 03:50 AM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: HA!]
Neil Wilkes Offline
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5.1 MP3 is an appalling mess - it is awful sound, and even when compared to DTS (another, albeit far superior) data-reduced format, the difference is obvious even to those with cloth for ears. Even the dire Dobly Dirgital is superior.

If surround CD is what you really want to do, then create DTS-CD.
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#1875841 - 01/19/08 09:09 AM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Neil Wilkes]
stuart Offline
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 Originally Posted By: Neil Wilkes
5.1 MP3 is an appalling mess - it is awful sound, and even when compared to DTS (another, albeit far superior) data-reduced format, the difference is obvious even to those with cloth for ears. Even the dire Dobly Dirgital is superior.If surround CD is what you really want to do, then create DTS-CD.


I think it sounds as good as any other MP3. It might do better to say "do a dvd-audio dvd if you want to do surround".
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#1876020 - 01/19/08 04:55 PM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: stuart]
Griffinator Offline
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 Originally Posted By: stuart
I think it sounds as good as any other MP3.


Which, coming full-circle to my original comment, is a big piece of why professional surround studios aren't doing it any more than professional 2-channel recording studios aren't recording straight to MP3.

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#1879135 - 01/25/08 06:08 AM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: stuart]
Neil Wilkes Offline
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 Originally Posted By: stuart
 Originally Posted By: Neil Wilkes
5.1 MP3 is an appalling mess - it is awful sound, and even when compared to DTS (another, albeit far superior) data-reduced format, the difference is obvious even to those with cloth for ears. Even the dire Dobly Dirgital is superior.If surround CD is what you really want to do, then create DTS-CD.


I think it sounds as good as any other MP3. It might do better to say "do a dvd-audio dvd if you want to do surround".


No, not really.
MP3 really is dreadful - and if you play the MP3 version followed by even a Dolby Digital version - never mind a DTS-CD - then you will certainly hear the muffled top end, the muddy loose bass and the general appalling data reduction.
Play the DTS-CD and you will be in heaven.
Much better - if on a budget - to go the DTS-CD route.

Sure, DVD-A is still the superior format. And you can get DVD-A authoring apps for those on a budget from as little as $35, so no excuse really - see http://www.cirlinca.com

I honestly and sincerely pray that MP3 surround will *never* take over. That will be a dark day indeed.


Edited by Neil Wilkes (01/25/08 06:09 AM)
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#1879219 - 01/25/08 07:57 AM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Neil Wilkes]
Griffinator Offline
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Question is, Neil, are we still in the "need an authoring drive" to actually author true DVD-A, or will a burner suffice in this new age of evolved software authoring?

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#1882204 - 01/31/08 03:04 AM Re: Surround MP3s [Re: Griffinator]
Neil Wilkes Offline
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 Originally Posted By: Griffinator
Question is, Neil, are we still in the "need an authoring drive" to actually author true DVD-A, or will a burner suffice in this new age of evolved software authoring?


Not at all - I only use a dedicated drive as I tend to have several things on the go at any one time, and this is what works for me in my way of keeping track.
Let me give a little more detail on the way I work, and then the way it is possible to do things.
I have the following setup:
C drive - OS/Applications.
D drive - SCSI Video drive, for video files only
E drive - SCSI Audio drive, for multitrack projects
F drive - EIDE DVD Authoring drive, for DVD-V & DVD-A.
G drive - Sample Libraries
H/I - External storage
J - Burner.
My thinking is that I do not only music, but film mixing - and as such find that with large projects of often over 100+ tracks, it is simply more efficient to keep audio on one drive & video on another.
I then put the DVD authoring jobs on yet another drive for simplicity, and because fuile sizes often get out of hand really quickly. If I am mixing at 24/96, I need all the throughput I can get from my SCSI setup, which is way faster than SATA or SATA 2 is. But the data rates start to mount up - fast - especially when Video is added into the equation. My partner does HD, and she just had to buy 2 separate Terabyte arrays, just to keep up with the data needs on a single job.

There is no need to do this though. If you are a relatively "small" user (and I do not mean this in a disparaging manner - far from it. I simply mean someone who is running, say, 6 tracks at 24/96 for a DVD-A, or 24/48, or perhaps even a 24 track mix. You will easily get by on a single HDD - but with multiple projects including Audio/Video, the data needs get silly in a hurry.

As far as budget DVD-A goes, have you checked out the DVD-Audio Solo app from Cirlinca? You cannot go wrong there.....
What I would still recommend is a dedicated Audio drive, no matter what - but if this is large enough, there is no reason why this cannot also handle authoring.
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