Old 27th October 2006, 18:33   #1
Psychonaut
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The "Use dither" option

I've searched the forums but can't find a real answer to my question: What does the "Use dither" option do? And do I need it when i've activated the "Allow 24bit" option?

So for your information -> I use a Creative X-Fi soundcard ;-)
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Old 27th October 2006, 18:46   #2
gaekwad2
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dither

It's only useful for 16bit output though, at 24bit rounding errors are safely below the noise floor of any analog component.
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Old 27th October 2006, 18:51   #3
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From what I read about dithering, is that it adds some kind of low level noise to the sound that makes it easier to the human ear to listen to digital music.

But I read elsewhere that dithering is not needed for 24-bit signals.

Edit: heh, gaekwad beat me to it.
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Old 28th October 2006, 18:33   #4
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so, when i have understood it correctly, then i can ("must") disable 'dither'. (?)
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Old 28th October 2006, 18:53   #5
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You don't have to, but it uses extra cpu power and isn't needed.
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Old 28th October 2006, 20:45   #6
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fyi, 'use dither' is currently only used by ogg vorbis & flac
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Old 28th October 2006, 21:12   #7
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Ah.

So in practice it's almost exclusively used by Vorbis (since most flacs are 16bit already).
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Old 23rd January 2008, 08:32   #8
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hi egg,

is this still true? i am trying to figure out if i need to use it or not? what does it do?

i use HQ mp3s.

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Old 23rd January 2008, 10:44   #9
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Yes. It's still only used by in_vorbis and in_flac
http://forums.winamp.com/showthread....25#post2197225

It's up to you, but I keep it unchecked.
If you don't have any OGG or FLAC files, then you'll never even notice anything.

Also note that there's been a few reports of distortion for ogg/flac playback when the 'use dither' option is enabled:
http://forums.winamp.com/showthread.php?threadid=266696
http://forums.winamp.com/showthread....18#post2161018
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Old 23rd January 2008, 10:57   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by gaekwad2
Ah.

So in practice it's almost exclusively used by Vorbis (since most flacs are 16bit already).
If you use Replay Gain with flac it might be useful as the samples will have to be rounded when the gain is applied. Or is gain applied after dithering? Could someone with the knowledge give a generalised flow of processing. E.g. decoding -> gain -> dither -> DSP -> output.

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Old 23rd January 2008, 11:57   #11
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It should work that way (as afaik RG is still applied within the input plugin). And yes, I forgot about RG.

Speaking of it, using RG clipping prevention should (mostly) solve the distortion problems (unless they're not caused by clipping, which is unlikely though).
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Old 7th May 2008, 01:22   #12
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16/24bit FLAC playback w/ dithering question

So it's recommended that for 16bit FLAC listening that this option be enabled? I'm not using Replaygain currently on any of my FLACs, but am planning on applying it at a later date to help equalize the varying volume of all the albums... should dithering be turned on or off when playing back replaygained files?

What if the flac is encoded from a 24 bit source? Should this always be manually disabled in that instance? The same for a 24 bit wav? (oh nevermind, i remember reading that wav output is not affected by this option) If I'm playing back a 16 bit source file (FLAC) with the "use 24bit" option on, would it still be to my advantage to turn off the "use dither" option?

Sorry, I'm a bit of a noob when it comes to this stuff and I have a 24 bit S/PDIF optical connection to my stereo now, and I'd like to get the best out of it
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