Rus Articles Journal

In what merits and demerits of CD and digital record?

to me were necessary to be engaged Once in extremely ungrateful business - to transfer amateur records from recorder cartridges in a “digital“ format. Work was followed by a constant chertykhaniye: old films were rumpled, confused, torn. It was necessary even to remember the forgotten practice of untwisting of cartridges and pastings of gaps. When tortures ended, and the perishing records turned into the MP3 format, I in a fit of temper exclaimed: “What happiness that the era of unreliable magnetic tapes and the bulky scratched vinyl ended!“. However, my enthusiasm was shared at all not by all … Here live

old times Pythagoras up to now, he with big delight would meet emergence of a “digital“ sound recording. The great mathematician, as we know, claimed that the number is the cornerstone of everything. And “to hammer a sound into figure“ and record of audioinformation in the most mathematical look, by a numerical code means no other than. Figures for this purpose, by the way, it is required only two - “zero“ and “edinichka“.

As I already wrote, during a mechanical recording on a phonograph record the cutter cut out a flute which windings just repeated fluctuations of a sound wave on a disk surface. As a result the physical copy of a sound which the needle then could “feel“ turned out as if and again turn into sound vibrations. This continuous a way of record can call analog .

On other the situation when a sound write down “digital“ in the way is. At first it gets to the device called analog - a digitizer (ATsP). There through very short intervals of the characteristic of an analog signal are measured and coded by a binary code (1 - an impulse, 0 - a pause). As a result the continuous sound wave is copied not entirely, and separate “measurements“, but intervals between them such tiny that the human ear is simply not able to feel this discretization.

The difference between an analog sound and “digital“ is well illustrated by comparison of an arrow and electronic clock. If in the first case we see the continuous movement of an arrow, then in the second - only the figures which are replaced through certain intervals.

Objectively analog copy of a sound, undoubtedly, more precisely “digital“. But to a “digital“ signal noise and distortions - eternal “scourge“ of cartridges and phonograph records are not terrible - the code (unlike a continuous analog recording) can just be corrected. As a result noise in “figure“ become weaker than the main signal in 100 million times, that is, are almost inaudible!

In the following device - tsifrovo - the analog converter (TsAP) - the code is deciphered and turns into a habitual analog sound which, considering what with it was made, all the same prefer to call “digital“.

It is necessary to tell that advantages of a “digital“ sound (purity of record, the range which is repeatedly surpassing possibilities of a human ear) are still put under doubts by musical “gourmets“. Excessive “sterility“, “coldness“, “lifelessness“ and other attributes of perfection was often charged to the new carrier.

Without possessing enough good ear for music, I will lay disputes aside. I will suggest only apropos “sterile“ and “lifeless“ sounding of a “digital“ soundtrack. Long ago it is known that for a human ear the complete silence is intolerable, and the most comfortable is just the easy noise background (like natural sounds - noise of wind, a rustle of leaves). Therefore the “digital“ record which is almost cleared of noise when listening it In EARPHONES is really capable to cause a certain discomfort.

As for the main lack of “digital“ record - its discretization, and here is curious arguments in protection.

D. Simanenkov “Riddles and paradoxes of a digital sound“:

“Several readers fairly note that so-called analog tape tape recorders in essence are digital devices. The matter is that number of the magnetic domains getting to a gap of the sound removing magnetic head of the tape recorder, of course. But anyway, this rather small number and precisely is not infinity.... From everything is higher than told follows that we cannot just hear purely analog recordings as tape tape recorders were used also during creation of vinyl records. So from old kind “vinyl“ there is a digital sound too! Therefore when it is claimed that the “analog“ sound is better digital, actually it is claimed that one digital system is better another!“
we will pass

to the description of the first, widely available, digital sound carrier Now.

of CD is made of transparent polymer on which then the reflecting layer from silver, gold or aluminum is applied. On a working surface there are flutes (as well as on vinyl records), however in itself they do not contain any information. These flutes much more densely, than on vinyl - with a step of 1,6 microns are cut.

Then by means of the laser in them deepenings - so-called pitas are burned out (English pit - a pole). That is, in fact, it is the same depth recording, as well as on Edison`s phonograph. Only on a phonograph these poles with potholes were direct display of fluctuations of a sound wave, and the binary code registers in CD with their help. Poles - pitas in this code are as if “zero“, and hillocks - “lenda“ (English land - the earth) - “units“. After drawing such coded information the working surface of a disk becomes covered by a protective layer of a varnish.

Also semiconductor laser is used to reading of information. The compact disk rotates, the beam slides on a bumpy path, is reflected and caught by sensors in the form of impulses of different frequency. Then the read information will be decoded and comes back to us via loudspeakers in the form of a sound.

Advantages of an optical disk it were available. In - the first, thanks to “delicate“ (actually contactless) laser sound pickup, CDs were several orders better protected from mechanical damages, than the same plates. Also a compact - disks were less sensitive to pushes and suited for listening in players and cars.

Well and of course you should not forget about the modest sizes of this sound carrier (thickness - 1,2 mm, diameter - 12 cm), though here did not do without dissatisfied. So the small sizes of boxes for CD caused confusion in the ranks of designers of the covers which got used to big envelopes of phonograph records. Now it was necessary to work with the area four times smaller, and with a set of fine details it was necessary to forget about cloths.

As a result of a cover of CD got a format of book brochures. In them any more lyrics and the most detailed information on group and an album nearly without fail began to be printed. All this of course was followed by pictures.

Sounding time had the pluses and minuses and increased (almost twice in comparison with phonograph records). The concept of a bilateral phonograph record (i.e., in fact, its division into two parts) fell into oblivion. But long works (like the same “The ninth symphony“) could register without unnecessary pauses. Respectively also the average number of songs on one album increased (14 - 17 instead of 8 - 10 on a vinyl longple). This unconditional advantage had also the reverse side, namely indulged peculiar “graphomania“ when instead of careful selection of songs in an album squeezed all musical material which was available.

One more advantage of CD - the player - convenience of management. Now the listener could switch easily tracks, and also program their listening in a desired order. Here too the small shortcoming was covered - now the impatient listener could ignore easily compositions, their sense and not rasslushav. For example, in my collection there are many songs of which I “got to the core“ and fell in love only after repeated listening (to rearrange a needle or it is even worse to rewind a tape often there was just a laziness).

But what all these small cavils in comparison with that “mine“ which “digital“ record enclosed in the basis of the audioindustry?

But about it next time.