Why some CDs have hiss when ripping?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by BasilFawlty, Aug 26, 2012.

  1. BasilFawlty macrumors 6502

    BasilFawlty

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    Jun 20, 2009
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    New Mexico
    #1
    I have been re-ripping several of my CDs to Apple Lossless. I find that some (not all) CDs have a distinct hiss in the songs when I listen with really good headphones. For Example, The Beatles Abby Road album has a distinct hiss that you can hear at times when the music is softer or there are relative quiet spots during a song. By Contrast, my "Boston" album of the same name has no hint of this hissing when ripped with Apple Lossless. Any ideas what might be causing this hissing on some but not all CDs? Some difference in how the CDs are manufactured perhaps?
     
  2. BrianBaughn macrumors 601

    BrianBaughn

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    #2
    There are many variables involved, but I think what you're hearing is tape hiss from the original recordings.
     
  3. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #3
    "I think what you're hearing is tape hiss from the original recordings."

    Methinks the original poster may have been born after "the tape era" which ran from the late 1940's up into the 1980's.

    The clarity and definition of CDs can make things audible that we overlooked on the original recordings and media. But today's kids might not understand that before digital, there was a time when one had to accept and put up with such "background noise".

    It's possible to make one-push-of-the-button home recordings today with a handheld ZOOM digital recorder, that performers and sound engineers couldn't -dream- about forty years ago...
     
  4. dejo Moderator

    dejo

    Staff Member

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    #4
    Tom Scholz just threw up in his mouth a little... ;)
     
  5. BasilFawlty thread starter macrumors 6502

    BasilFawlty

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    #5
    The original poster is close to 60, so I'm pretty sure he is familiar with "the tape era." But my old age aside, the CD I ripped from is the 2009 "digitally re-mastered" version on Abby Road, which I would "think" would have eliminated such things as tape hiss. Also, when I listed to the demos of the same songs on the ITunes store, I don't hear the hiss.
     
  6. takeshi74 macrumors 601

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    Feb 9, 2011
    #6
    But is the hiss on the CD itself? Plug the really good headphones into a CD player.

    You know what they say about assuming. Not all remastering is equal.
     
  7. BasilFawlty thread starter macrumors 6502

    BasilFawlty

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    #7
    I haven't done that yet, but I will check that a soon as I get the chance.
     
  8. BrianBaughn macrumors 601

    BrianBaughn

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    #8
    To eliminate the hiss on Abbey Road, processing still unacceptable to those in control of the masters would have to be performed.

    I believe, though, that the lastest re-mastering has a slight bit of extra "limiting" on it, which would reduce the overall volume during the loud portions, and therefore make the hiss in the quieter sections seem to have more hiss.
     
  9. BasilFawlty thread starter macrumors 6502

    BasilFawlty

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    New Mexico
    #10
    Well, as it turns out, the hiss is present on the CD as well (at least as played through my iMac). I may bring it to work and see if it is present when I listen through a regular CD player.
     

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