3d_sampler_bd_cover
AIX Records 3D Music Album Demo & Calibration Disc

Mark Chesnutt, Rita Coolidge, Free Flight & others more

oppo_aix_hd_sampler
AIX Records Calibration Disc & HD Music Sampler

Various Artists & Complete Test Tones more

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AIX Records BD HD Sampler IV

Various Artists & Genres [21 tracks] more

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A High-Resolution Audio Experience

Various Artists & Genres [29 tracks] more

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Goldberg Variations Acoustica

The AIX All Star Band more

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The Old City String Quartet - Mozart

Corey Klein / Horn and Ruokai Chen - Clarinet more

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John Gorka - A Gypsy Life

featuring Susan Werner, Amelia K. Spicer, Russ Rentler & Michael Manring more

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Chamber Music Palisades - Shostakovich/Debussy/ Brockman

Chamber Music Palisades more

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Pachelbel Acoustica

The AIX All Star Band more

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AIX Records 3D Music Album Demo & Cal. Disc

Mark Chesnutt, Rita Coolidge, Free Flight more

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AIX Records BD HD Sampler IV

Various Artists more

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AIX Records - BD Audio Cal Disc & HD Music Sampler

HD Video & HD Audio tracks from AIX Records more

gorka_cover
John Gorka - The Gypsy Life

Susan Werner, Amelia K. Spicer, R. Rentler & M. Manring more

gorka_cover
John Gorka - The Gypsy Life

Susan Werner, Amelia K. Spicer, R. Rentler & M. Manring more

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Lowen & Navarro - Carry On Together

Phil Parlapiano, Brett Simons & Dan Marfisimore

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Nitty Gritty Surround

John McEuen, Jimmy Ibbotson & guest Jennifer Warnes more

jonathan_mceuen_cover
Jonathan McEuen - One Step Ahead

guests Jamie Hanna, Phil Salazar and John McEuen more

ktla_cover
Music Of Lowen & Navarro - Keep The Light Alive

Jackson Browne, John Ondrasik, Keb' Mo', The Bangles more

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The Afro Cuban Latin Jazz Project - El Vuelo

Kamasi Washington, Gustavo Ramierez, Raul Pineda more

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Ernest Ranglin - Order of Distinction

Robby Krieger, Elliot Easton, Monty Alexander more

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Stevé March Tormé - Tormé Sings Tormé

Steve Rawlins, Jim DeJulio, Lanny Morgan, Bobby Rodriguez & more

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Vantage Point - Resolution

Simon Phillips, Jaff Babko, Walt Fowler, Brandon Fields & Alphonso Johnson more

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The Emil Richards/Joe Porcaro Allstar Big Band - Odd Men In

Pete Christleib, Chuck Findley, David Garfield & Bruce Zweig more

grant_geissman_cover
The Grant Geissman Quintet - There and Back Again

Gordon Goodwin [Big Phat Band], Jim Cox, Jimmy Johnson & Greg Bissonette more

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The Steve Huffsteter Big Band - Gathered Around

with Bill Perkins, Lee Thornburg, Buddy Childers, and Jock Ellis more

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The AIX All Stars - Surrounded By Christmas

with Laurence Juber, Jim Cox, Leland Sklar, Steve Forman and John Ferraro more

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Calamari

Emil Richards, Joe Porcaro, David Garfield & Mike Valerio more

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The Jim DeJulio Jazz Quintet

featuring Pete Christlieb, Conte Candoli, Pamela York and Joe La Barberamore

latin_jazz_trio_cover
The Latin Jazz Trio

Luis Conte, David Garfield & David Carpenter more

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David Garfield & the Retro Jazz Quintet

David Garfield, Walt Fowler, Larry Klimas, Ernest Tibbs, Oscar Seaton more

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Cheryl Bentyne - Among Friends

Corey Allen, Grant Geissman, Kevin Axt & David Tull more

paul_smith_cover
The Paul Smith Trio

Jim DeJulio & Dave Tull more

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Piano, Bass & Drums

Patrice Rushen, Darek Oleszkiewicz & Ndugu Chancler more

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AC Timba Jazz

featuring the music of Long John Oliva more

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Goldberg Variations Acoustica

The AIX All Star Band more

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Pachelbel Acoustica

The AIX All Star Band more

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Moonlight Acoustica

The AIX All Star Band more

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Albert Lee - Tearing it Up

Randle Curry, J.T. Thomas, Bob Glaub & Don Heffington more

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Tried & True

Jaime Hanna & Jonathan McEuenmore

rumor_mill_cover
The Carl Verheyen Band - Rumor Mill

with special guest Jim Cox more

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Steve Pierson & Blues Head - Blue Me Away

Laurence Juber, Michael Murphy, Gerald Johnson & Gary Mallabermore

surf_city_cover
The Surf City Allstar Band - I Get Surround

Dean Torrence & Jeff "Skunk" Baxter more

bad_haggis_cover
Bad Haggis - Span

with special guest Ruben Blades more

grant_geissman_cover
The Grant Geissman Quintet - There and Back Again

Gordon Goodwin [Big Phat Band], Jim Cox, Jimmy Johnson & Greg Bissonette more

take_one_step_cover
The Carl Verheyen Band - Take One Step

Cliff Hugo, Chad Wackerman, Bernie Dresel & Jim Cox more

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Deacon John - Jump Blues

with Dr. John & Allen Toussaint more

deacon_john_cover
Keaton Simon - Drive Away!

with Scott Bruzenak, Nate Wood, Scott Seiver more

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The Brand New Opry - Another Time Vol. 1

Jonathan McEuen, Phil Salazar, Jamie Hanna, John McEuen & Albert Lee more

jonathan_mceuen_cover
Nitty Gritty Surround

John McEuen, Jimmy Ibbotson & special guest Jennifer Warnes more

jonathan_mceuen_cover
Jonathan McEuen - One Step Ahead

with Nathan McEuen, Jesse Siebenberg & Randy Tico more

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Lisbeth Scott - Charmed

with very special guest Paul Schwartz more

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Laurence Juber - Guitar Noir

with Domenic Genova & Steve Forman more

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Peppino D'Agostino, Acoustic Guitar

with Juan van Emmerloot - perc/drums more

ktla_cover
Music Of Lowen & Navarro - Keep The Light Alive

Jackson Browne, John Ondrasik, Keb' Mo', The Bangles more

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John Gorka - A Gypsy Life

Susan Werner, Amelia K. Spicer, Russ Rentler & Michael Manring more

gorka_cover
John Gorka - The Gypsy Life

featuring Susan Werner, Amilia K. Spicer, Russ Rentler & Michael Manring more

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Lowen & Navarro - Carry On Together

Phil Parlapiano, Brett Simons & Dan Marfisi more

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The AIX All Stars - Surrounded By Christmas

with Laurence Juber, Jim Cox, Leland Sklar, Steve Forman and John Ferraro more

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Ian Whitcomb - Turned On Alley

Bobby Bruce, Fred Sokolow, Tom Marion, Tim Emmons & Randy Woltz more

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Dorian Michael - Acoustic Blues

with Laurence Juber & Albert Lee more

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Zephyr: Voices Unbound

12-voice a cappella choir more

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Lisbeth Scott - Charmed

with very special guest Paul Schwartz more

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Paul Williams - I'm Going Back There Someday

special guests Willie Nelson, Melissa Manchester & The Great Gonzo more

ktla_cover
Music Of Lowen & Navarro - Keep The Light Alive

Jackson Browne, John Ondrasik, Keb' Mo', The Bangles more

lowen_navarro_cover
Lowen & Navarro - Carry On Together

Phil Parlapiano, Brett Simons & Dan Marfisimore

gorka_bd_cover
John Gorka - A Gypsy Life

featuring Susan Werner, Amelia K. Spicer, Russ Rentler and Michael Manring more

gorka_cover
John Gorka - The Gypsy Life

featuring Susan Werner, Amilia K. Spicer, Russ Rentler & Michael Manring more

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Stevé March Tormé - Tormé Sings Tormé

Steve Rawlins, Jim DeJulio, Lanny Morgan, Bobby Rodriguez & dektette more

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The Brand New Opry - Another Time Vol. 1

Jonathan McEuen, Phil Salazar, Jamie Hanna, John McEuen & others more

jonathan_mceuen_cover
Nitty Gritty Surround

John McEuen, Jimmy Ibbotson & special guest Jennifer Warnes more

blueshead_cover
Steve Pierson and Blues Head - Blue Me Away

Laurence Juber, Michael Murphy, Gerald Johnson & Gary Mallabermore

surf_city_cover
The Surf City Allstar Band - I Get Surround

featuring Dean Torrence & Jeff "Skunk" Baxter more

ian_whitcomb_cover
Ian Whitcomb - Turned On Alley

featuring Bobby Bruce, Fred Sokolow, Tom Marion, Tim Emmons & Randy Woltz more

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The Dale Spalding Band - Downtown

Lon Price, Bruce Malament, Tomas Gargano & Kenny Elliot more

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Fred Sokolow

with Ian Whitcomb & Junior Brown more

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Nicci Gilbert - Nicci Gilbert & Friends

Demetria McKinney, Jaretta Lott, Monifah Carter & Tammy Townsend more

jonathan_mceuen_cover
Jonathan McEuen - One Step Ahead

with guests Jesse Siebenberg, Phil Salazar & Randy Tico more

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The Old City String Quartet - Mozart

Corey Klein / Horn and Ruokai Chen - Clarinet more

cmp_cover
Chamber Music Palisades - Shostakovich/Debussy/Brockman

Chamber Music Palisades more

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Chamber Music Palisades - Shostakovich/Debussy/Brockman

Chamber Music Palisades more

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Chopin - The Ballades

Anita Chang - piano more

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Beethoven - Symph. 6/ Respighi - Pines of Rome

New Jersey Symphony Orchestra - Zdenek Macal more

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Johnnes Brahms - Piano Quintet Op. 34 in F Minor

Delores Stevens & Ives Quartet more

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Zephyr: Voices Unbound

12-voice a cappella choir more

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Chopin - Selected Piano Works

performed by Roberto Prosseda more

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Stravinsky - Firebird/Ravel - Bolero

George Enescu Philharmonic Orchestra/Cristian Mandeal more

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Mozart Symphonies 26 & 41 "Jupiter"

George Enescu Philharmonic Orchestra/ Cristian Mandeal more

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Bach - Brandenburg No.s 3 & 5 / Air on the G String

George Enescu Philharmonic Orchestra/ Cristian Mandeal more

haydn_trios_cover
Haydn Keyboard Trios No.s 39, 40 & 26

The "Pro Arte" Trio more

scarlatti_beethoven_cover
Six Sonatas for Woodwind Quintet / Woodwind Quintet Op. 71

The "George Enescu" Quintet more

debussy_harp_cover
Music for Solo Harp - Debussy, Glinka & Others

performed by Ion Ivan Roncea more

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A Classical Surround Sampler

Various Ensembles more

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Marcello-Oboe Concerto Handel-Organ Concerto Vivaldi-2 Sinfonias

A. Petrescu/N. Licaret more

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Mozart - Variations K. 573 / Schumann - Fantasie Op. 17

performed by Matei Vargas, piano more

michael_williams_piano_cover
Lyricism: Songs Without Words

performed by Roberto Prosseda more

brahms_clar_quintet_cover
Brahms Clarinet Quintet

Dimitri Ashkenazy, clarinet & Ives String Quartet more

albert_lee_ce_cover
Albert Lee - Tearing it Up

Randle Curry, J.T. Thomas, Bob Glaub & Don Heffington more

albert_lee_cover
Albert Lee - Tearing it Up

Randle Curry, J.T. Thomas, Bob Glaub & Don Heffington more

hanna_mceuen_cover
Tried & True

Jaime Hanna & Jonathan McEuenmore

brand_new_opry_cover
The Brand New Opry - Another Time Vol. 1

Jonathan McEuen, Phil Salazar, Jamie Hanna, John McEuen & others more

jonathan_mceuen_cover
Nitty Gritty Surround

John McEuen, Jimmy Ibbotson & special guest Jennifer Warnes more

albert_lee_ce_cover
Albert Lee - Tearing it Up

Randle Curry, J.T. Thomas, Bob Glaub and Don Heffington more

albert_lee_cover
Albert Lee - Tearing it Up

Randle Curry, J.T. Thomas, Bob Glaub and Don Heffington more

laurence_juber_cover
Laurence Juber - Guitar Noir

with Domenic Genova & Steve Forman more

peppino_dagostino_cover
Peppino D'Agostino, Acoustic Guitar

with Juan van Emmerloot - perc/drums more

ernest_ranglin_cover
Ernest Ranglin - Order of Distinction

with Robby Krieger, Elliot Easton, Monty Alexander more

rumor_mill_cover
The Carl Verheyen Band - Rumor Mill

with special guest Jim Cox more

grant_geissman_cover
The Grant Geissman Quintet - There and Back Again

Gordon Goodwin of the Big Phat Band, Jim Cox, Jimmy Johnson and Greg Bissonette more

dorian_michael_cover
Dorian Michael - Acoustic Blues

with Laurence Juber & Albert Lee more

fred_sokolow_cover
The Dale Spalding Band - Downtown

Lon Price, Bruce Malament, Tomas Gargano & Kenny Elliot more

blueshead_cover
Steve Pierson and Blues Head - Blue Me Away

Laurence Juber, Michael Murphy, Gerald Johnson & Gary Mallabermore

dorian_michael_cover
Dorian Michael - Acoustic Blues

with Laurence Juber & Albert Lee more

dale_spalding_cover
The Dale Spalding Band - Downtown

Lon Price, Bruce Malament, Tomas Gargano & Kenny Elliot more

ktla_cover
Music Of Lowen & Navarro - Keep The Light Alive

Jackson Browne, John Ondrasik, Keb' Mo', The Bangles more

paul_williams_cover
Paul Williams - I'm Going Back There Someday

special guests Willie Nelson, Melissa Manchester & The Great Gonzo more

rumor_mill_cover
The Carl Verheyen Band - Rumor Mill

with special guest Jim Cox more

take_one_step_cover
The Carl Verheyen Band - Take One Step

Cliff Hugo, Chad Wackerman, Bernie Dresel & Jim Cox more

deacon_john_cover
Keaton Simon - Drive Away!

with Scott Bruzenak, Nate Wood, Scott Seiver more

afro_cuban_latin_jazz_cover
The Afro Cuban Latin Jazz Project - El Vuelo

Kamasi Washington, Gustavo Ramierez, Raul Pineda more

latin_jazz_trio_cover
The Latin Jazz Trio

Luis Conte, David Garfield & David Carpenter more

ac_timba_jazz_cover
AC Timba Jazz

featuring the music of Long John Oliva more

bad_haggis_cover
Bad Haggis - Span

with special guest Ruben Blades more

ernest_ranglin_cover
Ernest Ranglin - Order of Distinction

with Robby Krieger, Elliot Easton, Monty Alexander more

afro_cuban_latin_jazz_cover
The Afro Cuban Latin Jazz Project - El Vuelo

Kamasi Washington, Gustavo Ramierez, Raul Pineda more

ac_timba_jazz_cover
AC Timba Jazz

featuring the music of Long John Oliva more

latin_jazz_trio_cover
The Latin Jazz Trio

Luis Conte, David Garfield & David Carpenter more

romanian_folk_cover
Romanian Folk Music

featuring The Adrian Petrescu Band more

HD MUSIC DOWNLOADS
The entire catalog of AIX Records, including the 5.1 surround mixes, is available for downloading. You can choose to download files from this site or visit our partner site iTrax.com to access our HD digital files.
ARTICLES
spectra


Spectragraphs: An HD Music Tool
I happened across a discussion at Computer Audiophile that has uncorked the HD Music Download world's dirty little secret. I posted the following comment… It seems that a curtain has been pulled back and end users are beginning to understand the processes that go on during the production of a recording. I have been a long and vocal advocate on the topic of what constitutes "HD" for many years. In fact, I gave a seminar at the RMAF showing spectragraphs of tracks taken from ALL of the major download sites and DVD-R "HD" distribution discs. The qualityof the recordings varied greatly. There were tracks that extended all the way up to 48 kHz and had no clipping or apparent dynamic processing and clipping. But far too often the tracks showed limited frequency response (no frequencies beyond 22-25 kHz) and very obvious applications of heavy dynamics processing. What is being hoisted on HD fans and being reviewed in glowing terms by many writers are actually tracks that have been upsampled into "HD buckets", tracks that were recorded before HD equipment existed and tracks that ripped from discs and put out as "HD" files without verifying that they actually qualify as HD. This is done because there is better cash flow in having lots of so-called HD tracks available.

To more fully understand this, we have to define what is an HD track. I know many audiophiles do not agree with my definition but I state it this way…

A high definition audio recording is one that equals or exceeds the frequency response and dynamic range of human hearing.

Of course, there are lots of opinions on whether our ears can respond to sounds above 20 kHz and also how sensitive we are to dynamics, but that's an argument for another time. Some of the spectragraphs in this thread clearly illustrate that instruments are capable of producing audio energy above 25 kHz (however, please remember that 50 kHz is only one additional octave).

My position is that producers and audio engineers would benefit by using state-of-the-art digital equipment that can capture all of the frequencies produced by a violin or Harmon-muted trumpet (up to 50 kHz and beyond). If there is sound up there and dynamic range of 110 dB plus being produced, we should record it, plain and simple (it does require lots of expensive equipment and years of experience to get it right).

Of course, there are others that prefer to use vintage analog equipment because they prefer the "sound" of analog gear (like Cookie and T. Bone Burnett). The choices are up to the production team and the target customer. The recordings vary based on the quality and circumstances of the original session.

It's really pretty simple when you get down to the world of acoustics and equipment. In order to produce and distribute "real" high definition recordings (in any format…CD-ROM files, DVD-R files, downloadable soundfiles, Blu-ray, SACD and DVD-Audio discs), you have to start by recording a NEW production using tools that are capable of recording in real HD.

That's why the Köln Concert shows limited freqency response…or why Gaucho is limited in both it frequency response and dynamic range. The original productions of both (and lots of other older tracks) were done on analog tape. Additionally, post processing (mastering) a project for a commercial marketplace demands music that is dynamically compressed and heavily processed.

I'm not against analog tape. I've worked with analog tape for over 40 years in both multichannel and stereo. I am the proud owner of a Nagra IV-S 2-channel location recorder that boasts some of the best specifications of any analog machine (using non-standard Nagrmaster EQ). I used it for over 15 years to capture recordings of Voodoo music in Haiti, sound effects in the jungles of Costa Rica and classical music in the big room at Lucas' Skywalker ranch. But at the end of the day, analog tape has some problems. These include a high frequency bias current that hovers at around 50 kHz, limited frequency response (up to around 20-25 kHz being generous), 65-73 dB of signal to noise ratio (without noise reduction - this translates to around 12 bits or equivalent digital PCM)), speed imperfections, print-through, THD and crosstalk. I moved to HD PCM digital because it can potentially produce recording that do not suffer from those problems (although it also has issues of its own that have to be dealt with such as…aliasing, jitter, quantization errors).

If you choose to make a recording on analog tape, you have to accept the limitations of that format. Obviously, many producers have made that choice. Although, I would argue that claiming an analog source recording is HD is a dubious claim. If you like the sound (or the sound of vinyl) accept the imperfections and revel in the euphoniousness of the music. This was the standard the dominated the world of recorded music until real HD came along.

One of the posts above identified the "noise" associated with DSD's (the recording methodology of SACD discs) need to move audio bandwidth noise above the music band...effectively making SACD more standard definition than HD. Most mastering engineers "roll-off" the HF noise bringing the frequency response back into the 25 kHz range, which is decidedly standard definition and is the reason that my little company has never issued an SACD. Again, if it is a sound you appreciate or if there is a particular piece of music that is only available on SACD, I'd say go for it. In fact, iTrax offers many recordings from Harmonia Mundi that were originally tracked using DSD.

There was a small start up that offered "HD Music Downloads" called MusicGiants a few years ago. I knew the people in charge and applauded their efforts to improve the quality of downloaded files. However, I had many heated debates about there marketing as "HD" tracks that were clearly made using 24-track analog machines and mastered for vinyl or CD. To put a standard definition track into a "digital container" that has HD specifications doesn't magically transform it into an HD track. The high frequencies and dynamic range stays the same. If the original analog track topped out at 20 kHz then the 96 kHz version on DVD-A wouldn't have anything above 20 kHz as well. This is what this list has stumbled on.

Not all digital music retailers are created equal. Using Audacity, Audition or Sound Booth or other higher end professional tools (Audio Precision) are useful in determining the fundamental specifications of a given recording. They are not the only measures of a great sound track but they do contribute to our knowledge of a particular recording.

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RECENT REVIEWS

recent article
Apple Announces iTunes May Support High Resolution

There's some buzz floating around that Apple Computer is considering offering 24-bit audio on it's dominant digital... more

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Goldberg Variations Acoustica

The AIX All Star Band more

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The Old City String Quartet - Mozart

Corey Klein / Horn & Ruokai Chen - Clarinet more

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Pachelbel Acoustica

The AIX All Star Band more

REVIEW ARCHIVES

3d_sampler_bd_cover
AIX Records 3D Music Album Demo & Calibration Disc

Mark Chesnutt, Rita Coolidge, Free Flight & others more

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Goldberg Variations Acoustica

The AIX All Star Band more

mozart_bd_3d_cover
The Old City String Quartet - Mozart

Corey Klein / Horn and Ruokai Chen - Clarinet more

OUR FAVORITES

gorka_cover
John Gorka - The Gypsy Life

featuring Susan Werner, Amilia K. Spicer, Russ Rentler & Michael Manring more

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Goldberg Variations Acoustica

The AIX All Star Band more

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Laurence Juber - Guitar Noir

with Domenic Genova & Steve Forman more

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Lowen & Navarro - Carry On Together

Phil Parlapiano, Brett Simons & Dan Marfisimore

SPECTRAGRAPHS

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Lowen & Navarro - Carry On Together

Phil Parlapiano, Brett Simons & Dan Marfisimore

EXPERTS AGREE

  • "I worry about sound quality and old ways of the industry. Up-sampled CDs, play-everything consumer machines and lawyers killed the DVDA. The tragic consequence was much like humanity creating the first wheel and breaking it apart so it would not roll away. Many titles in vaults have sonic losses from compression and sampling that can’t be recovered. Yet, surely, there will be re-issues even though high resolution will not improve them. Some reviewers use analyzers to spot these marketed imposters."

    Keith O. Johnson, Chief Engineer and Technical Director, Reference Recordings

  • "It's good to know there are still some labels left dedicated to making high quality surround recordings. I applaud you for educating people about what is and isn't HD (analog tape/vinyl being an example that isn't HD)."

    Dr. Sean E. Olive / Director of Acoustic Research/Corporate R&D.

AN ENCOURAGING CUSTOMER COMMENT
"AIX is like the Bentley of audiophile labels. "

Brian Healy - Customer.
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