IET - Perspectives On Audio: Information vs Data; Fidelity vs Resolution

17th August 2021 7:00 pm

Audio bridges science and engineering with the complexity of the human listener. If we are to close that gap, we need to ask the right questions. This talk begins with a tutorial overview of topics in modern auditory science that are pertinent to fidelity and resolution. It also sketches information flow in the listener giving some surprising estimates. Next, a quick tour through sound reproduction, starting with analogue, shows how a ‘narrow’ approach to digital audio inadvertently embedded key errors in recordings and playback systems. This is briefly illustrated with seven theories of ‘High-Resolution’ and consideration of the paradoxes of losslessness and data vs information flow. If we consider the whole chain from microphone to loudspeaker, and more precisely define objectives for transparency using principles of communication theory, modern sampling theory and current auditory science, we show that a better engineering solution is indeed possible.

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