• Rexinator
    Posts: 43
    Joined: May 30th, 2009
    Using Logic plus Waveburner
    I posted this same commentary in the Waveburner category, because it's mostly about WB, but I thought it might get more attention in the Logic department. I apologize for selfishly posing my questions repeatedly, but I am finishing a 2-CD project and am frustrated by the lack of clarity about bit reduction and dithering in Waveburner. The basic question is: Exactly when does WB impart bit reduction and dithering? I googled and checked several forums, but did not obtain any clear info on this subject. As far as I can tell from my own experience, bouncing a WB project will render it to 16-bit and will engage dithering if one of the 3 algorithms is selected under WB Preferences / Bounce. This will yield a composite single wav file of all of the songs, with individual song markers in place as they were located in the Waveview screen (when the project was created). This bounced file can be burned directly to disc, and I'm assuming that no further dithering will be applied because the file is already at 16 bits. One thing I don't understand is why there is an option in WB to bounce with no dithering. Who would want to do that, assuming that bounces are intended to be burned to CD? Perhaps that would be useful if you wanted to bounce only certain regions (individual songs) and then re-import them back into WB, prior to the final bounce. If you do that (i.e., select No Dithering), you'd have to remember to turn it back on for the final project bounce, right? Or maybe the 'No Dithering' option is intended for a circumstance where the songs had previously undergone bit reduction and dithering prior to importing into WB (?) But here's the part that's most confusing for me: Out of curiosity, I bounced an entire project consisting of [b]24-bit[/b] non-dithered songs after choosing [b]No Dithering[/b] in WB's preferences. This again yielded a single wav file, and as per my above assumptions, this should be a 16-bit file with no dithering applied during the reduction from 24 to 16 bits. Burning this to disc should theoretically contain audible artifacts because of the lack of dithering, I assumed. But the resulting CD was indistinguishable sonically from the one I burned from a dithered bounce. Does WB make an 'executive decision' to maintain the current bit depth during a bounce when No Dithering is selected in WB's Preferences? And if so, would the 24-bit bounce be dithered 'behind the scenes' when burning to CD (to properly manage the bit reduction), even though no dithering algorithm was selected anywhere? And if WB is really choosing a dithering algorithm for you, which one is it? In other words, is WB idiot-proof? It's very unsettling to me to have this much uncertainty after having spent a year on a double CD project. Maybe the best solution would be to not use WB, eh? But I like the way it enables CD creation.
  • GaryHiebner
    Posts: 1434
    Joined: May 6th, 2007
    Re: Using Logic plus Waveburner
    Hi Rexinator. I thought about this and the 'no dither' option is probably in Waveburner in case you have applied dithering elsewhere. For example when I master in Logic I will use the Waves L2 Limiter with a dithering option. I then won't use the dither option when I bounce out the song in Logic as I don't want to apply a double-dither. So maybe it's there in WB as well in case users are using other 3rd party plugins on the master channelstrip where they are applying dither. So either use the dither in WB if you haven't already used dither. Or choose the 'no dither' option if you have applied it elsewhere. Still the process does seem a bit confusing in WB, and the documentation isn't exactly clear.
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