• Complimentary High Resolution Downloads Courtesy of First Impression Music (24/88.2, 24/176.4, 32/352.8)

    Most audiophiles are well aware of First Impression Music and the quality that is attached to the FIM brand. Everyone who has purchased an FIM compact disc can't help but appreciate the quality packaging, liner notes, and most of all the stellar sound quality. Now for the first time ever First Impression Music has authorized Computer Audiophile to offer two complimentary music downloads. These are not just any downloads. FIM has supplied Computer Audiophile with two tracks at several sample rates including 24/88.2, 24/176.4, and 32/352.8. These tracks have never been stored on optical media such as DVD or CD. Thus, we have avoided any ripping issues or problems related to the compact disc creation process.



     

    The following is how FIM produces its compact discs and how the FIM downloads are made available to Computer Audiophile readers. The CD process is far more advanced than most popular methods of producing compact discs, yet is still far from perfect. By offering these downloads the listener bypasses all of the following physical media processes and receives a copy of the files via a much different path.

     

    Downloads
    The process of offering these downloads to the readers of Computer Audiophile:

    Mastering Engineer places WAV files from a hard drive on FTP server.
    WAV files are downloaded to Computer Audiophile music server.
    WAV files are uploaded to Computer Audiophile website for readers to download.
    FLAC & AIFF versions are created using the application Max.
    FLAC & AIFF files are uploaded to Computer Audiophile website for readers to download.

     


    Compact Discs
    FIM mastering process
    Master tape > editing, sequencing and time-logging all within the same hard disc of the Sonic Solution computer program
    Exabyte (1) ( true professional quality, many times higher in precision than DAT; the tape width is double that of DAT)
    glass stamper.

    Only one generation of transfer is made from the master tape to the glass stamper to ensure the least of loss of information. Quality of the music source is controlled up to the glass master.

    (3) The next step is to control the quality of the replication of the CDs. One of the ways is to ensure that the Block Error Rate (BLER) is as low as possible. The BLER of GS CDs is averaged at 20 while the industrial norm is around 200, meaning technically, they are 10 times better. For FIM CDs, the BLER is even averaged at 10, meaning technically 20 times better! To assure customers, we provide copies of the certificate of authenticity on request for every CD sold! Perhaps this is the only label that offers this level of guarantee and service.

    Hence, the whole production process is under meticulous quality control.

    In a nutshell, the owner of a FIM CD is ensured that he is in possession of one that gives him more beautiful music and the highest quality available in the market.


     

    I would like to personally thank Mr. Winston Ma of First Impression Music for offering these complimentary downloads to readers of Computer Audiophile. Readers who would like more information about FIM and to want to purchase these and other great recordings should proceed to the FIM Website. In addition I would like to thank Bruce Brown of Puget Sound Studios for making the music available for download, providing information surrounding the creation of the tracks, and creating different versions of each track for readers with systems of varying capabilities.

     

     

    Both tracks mastered using a Ruper Neve Masterpiece II mastering console and a Forsell modified Millennia NSEQ-2. Down sample version via Weiss Saracon DSD


     

     
    FIM XR24-066, "Super Sound 1"
    Carmen Habanera Fantasia: Transfered from analog master tapes with a Digital Audio Denmark AX24 AD/DA converter at 32/352.8kHz into a Pyramix DSD/DXD Digital Audio Workstation.

    Windows Users Right-click the links and select Save As.
    Mac OS X Users Control-click the links and select Download Linked File.

    24-bit/88.2 kHz

    Sorry the downloads have expired. There will be more in the future :~)

    24-bit/176.4 kHz

    Sorry the downloads have expired. There will be more in the future :~)


    32-bit/352.8 kHz

    Sorry the downloads have expired. There will be more in the future :~)


     

     

     
    FIM DXD-079, "What A Wonderful Trio!" - Tsuyoshi Yamamoto Trio
    Happy Soccer Striker: Live Studio recording on 7/4/08 at Onkio Haus, Tokyo, Japan using an SSL 9000J console mixed down to 4 channels into a Digital Audio Denmark AX24 at 32/352.8kHz. For back-up, we used an EMM Labs ADC8IV into a Tascam DV-RA1000HD at DSD64fs.


    Windows Users Right-click the links and select Save As.
    Mac OS X Users Control-click the links and select Download Linked File.

    24-bit/88.2 kHz

    Sorry the downloads have expired. There will be more in the future :~)


    24-bit/176.4 kHz

    Sorry the downloads have expired. There will be more in the future :~)


    32-bit/352.8 kHz

    Sorry the downloads have expired. There will be more in the future :~)


     

     

     


    All music in this article Copyright 2009 First Impression Music. All Rights Reserved. Any unauthorized broadcasting, public performance, copying, re-distribution, or re-recording will constitute an infringement of copyright. Permission granted to original person downloading file for personal use only. Commercial use is prohibited.

     

     

     
    Comments 31 Comments
    1. Bob Stern's Avatar
      Bob Stern -
      Anyone know the original recording from which this was derived (label, year, conductor, orchestra)?
    1. The Computer Audiophile's Avatar
      The Computer Audiophile -
      Hi Harald - I checked the FLAC downloads you mentioned and had no problems playing the files via Songbird on my Mac.<br />
      <br />
      Also, it's my understanding, and the article states this as well, that the Carmen Habanera Fantasia is a 32/352.8 recording, not a 44.1 original. Hopefully Bruce Brown will chime in here and let us know for sure.<br />
      <br />
      <br />
      <i>"Carmen Habanera Fantasia: Transfered from analog master tapes with a Digital Audio Denmark AX24 AD/DA converter at 32/352.8kHz into a Pyramix DSD/DXD Digital Audio Workstation."</i>
    1. agentsmith's Avatar
      agentsmith -
      I have a Weiss DAC2 which I believe supports up to 24/192.<br />
      <br />
      Does it mean that the 32/352.8 version is of no use to me? Which DAC supports this sampling rate and bit depth?
    1. icebreaker's Avatar
      icebreaker -
      Superb!
    1. jgee's Avatar
      jgee -
      I am running a DAC that nominally handles up to 192 kHz, so I downloaded the 24/176.4 aiff files, and had no glitches on playback with iTunes or Amarra. Great sound on both cuts! Has anyone had success with the 32/352.8 files?<br />
      <br />
      I couldn't find the Super Sounds 1 info on the FIM site either, but on Amazon it appears to be performed by Northwest Sinphonietta, conducted by Harold Faberman.<br />
      <br />
      Thanks, Chris, for keeping us well-supplied with music and current information.<br />
      <br />
      Jeff<br />
      <br />
      MacPro 10.6.1<br />
      G-Tech G-Speed fibre-channel RAID<br />
      Sonic Studio Amarra 1.0.2<br />
      Lynx 16e PCIe<br />
      Berkeley Audio Design Alpha DAC
    1. DSD_mastering's Avatar
      DSD_mastering -
      Yes, the Carmen Habanera Fantasia was Harold Faberman conducting the Northwest Sinfonietta. This arrangement was written especially for Mr. Ma by the conductor. <br />
      <br />
      Harald, how can it be a 44.1 recording if it came off my Studer A810?<br />
      Maybe because the frequency responce is only 20k? Is that what you mean? <br />
      <br />
      The DXD files can only be played back on a DAD AX24 or a dCS 955 DAC. These were done in case anyone had the units so they could see the potential of hi-rez downloads. I know 2L has downloads available in DXD as well. The Weiss Saracon DSD will do a sample rate conversion of these file to any you want.<br />
      <br />
      For a review of "What A Wonderful Trio" you can go the below website and click on "Music" in the tab above. The reviewer said, <br />
      "I was delighted with its almost unlimited dynamics and perfect resolution. It sounded like 45 rpm vinyl!" <br />
      Guess you can't get much better than that!<br />
      <br />
      http://www.highfidelity.pl/@lang-en<br />
      <br />
      <br />
      Regards,<br />
      <br />
      <br />
      <br />
      <br />
      <br />
    1. Synfreak's Avatar
      Synfreak -
      Hi Chris!<br />
      <br />
      I`ve downloaded the *.wav version of the "Happy Striker" track instead of the FLAC, problem "solved" <br />
      <br />
      Bruce (and Chris):<br />
      <br />
      I _think_ that the Habanera track might be based on a 44,1khz pcm recording, because it`s frequency response shows a fast and steep cutoff between 20 and 21 khz. If this is an analogue recording, shouldn´t the rolloff be way more gentle?<br />
      <br />
      <a href="http://www.abload.de/image.php?img=habanera01n4l3.jpg"><img src="http://www.abload.de/img/habanera01n4l3.jpg" /></a><br />
      <br />
      But this is only speculation from my side, and based on the sad fact, that a large number of "so called" high resolution material (on disc or as download) is only 44,1/24 or 48/24.<br />
      There is nothing wrong with the sonic quality (in most cases), but to me these are no "real" HighRez recordings.<br />
      <br />
      Cheers<br />
      Harald
    1. JR_Audio's Avatar
      JR_Audio -
      I also must confirm that the Habanera File is limited due to a 44.1 digital sampling anyway in the signal chain. So if you get it from an analog Tape, than the way before it gets to the tape, must have been band limited. This sharp drop can’t be a microphone or a tape machine. So this high sampling rate is not necessary for this file, beside you do have a different sound due to different digital filter, but not due to higher signal contents or higher timing accuracy.<br />
      <br />
      Just one addition: I hope you do not get me wrong; my comment has nothing to do with the sound quality which is really great and wonderful: it’s only about the post high sampling rate which is similar to a good even number synchronous oversampling filter plus the addition of a fantastic analog Tape sound (PS: I also went through a Studer tape machine, to add some vivid back to the digital recorded tracks).<br />
      <br />
      Juergen<br />
    1. ackcheng's Avatar
      ackcheng -
      It just happened that I also have the same CD so I did some test to it. I compared the so called master file with the CD 16/44 file and upsampled 24/176 file from CD using SARACON and POW-R3. The spectral analysis is shown here<br />
      <br />
      Original CD 16/44 <br />
      <br />
      http://upload.review33.com/images/200909/200909282025433404.jpg<br />
      <br />
      Master file <br />
      <br />
      http://upload.review33.com/images/200909/200909282026134558.jpg<br />
      <br />
      upsampled from 16/44 filw using saracon and pow-r3. <br />
      <br />
      http://upload.review33.com/images/200909/200909282026369913.jpg<br />
      <br />
      You can see that the 2 24/176 analysis are almost identical. So either the master is not really a master or SARACON is doing an perfect job in upsampling!
    1. JR_Audio's Avatar
      JR_Audio -
      Your Master File is also a 44.1 sampled file, so no high sampling rate master, and the Weis Saracon is a relatively good SRC (it has some slight mirror image frequencies, because of a little bit too soft transition band) but no other distortions. But if you Master File is 24 Bit and is up sampled by a good SRC (even number) it will sound better as the 44.1 CD File and also different SRC do sound different.<br />
      <br />
      Juergen<br />
    1. DSD_mastering's Avatar
      DSD_mastering -
      I guess I was more concerned with making it sound good than look good!<br />
      <br />
      <br />
      Regards,
    1. ackcheng's Avatar
      ackcheng -
      The master file I used for comparison is actually downloaded from this site<br />
      <br />
      Carmen Habanera Fantasia AIFF 24/176.4 (197.41 MB)<br />
      <br />
      The 16/44.1 is ripped from the CD that I have from FIM<br />
      <br />
      Arthur<br />
      <br />
    1. JR_Audio's Avatar
      JR_Audio -
      Good post. I think we all here agree that how it sounds it what counts and what involves us and what is driving us further. So I think you will also agree, that with the Habanera track, it is not the “higher” bandwidth, because there is no, but there are lot of other things, that take this recording and mastering a fantastic file.<br />
      <br />
      Juergen<br />
    1. machinehead's Avatar
      machinehead -
      Thanks Chris for making this happen, and for free!<br />
      <br />
      The Fantasia recording was certainly one of the best I have heard.<br />
      <br />
    1. Audio_ELF's Avatar
      Audio_ELF -
      Not 100% sure ... but the Naim DAC should be able to play 32/352.8 WAV files loaded onto a USB Memory stick.<br />
      <br />
      Chris - do you mind if I point people asking (on the Naim Forum) for a demo of such files to here?
    1. The Computer Audiophile's Avatar
      The Computer Audiophile -
      You can certainly direct people here, just don't link directly to the files. Otherwise I pay for the bandwidth without any increase in traffic :~)
    1. agentsmith's Avatar
      agentsmith -
      Where can we buy/download these hires versions? I have been waiting for some of the real hires versions of their discs like the JUN FUKAMACHI/AT STEINWAY (TAKE 2) disc, which is available in over-priced CD with mastered in 384Khz label in front but "playable on regular CD players". <br />
      <br />
      Well when can get the real stuff? The CD stated above cost north of $40! We don't need over-priced CD treated with diamond dust or what knot. WE need the real stuff, and quite willing to pay for it.<br />
      <br />
      Just place them in HDTRACKS and they will sell a whole bunch.<br />
      <br />
    1. The Computer Audiophile's Avatar
      The Computer Audiophile -
      Be careful what you wish for ..... :~)
    1. agentsmith's Avatar
      agentsmith -
      Well thanks for the hint. I figure they must have a reason to put these freebies out
    1. ajay556's Avatar
      ajay556 -
      I would like to thank Chris for providing us audiophiles this great service. Additionally, deepest thanks to FIM for reproducing albums that are closer to the master versions. I recently purchased the<br />
      gold version of the jazz pawn shop, what a wonderful cd, and among others like Oscar petterson. I am anxiuosly waiting for more CDs to be released by FIM.<br />
      <br />
      Thank you Winston MA and chris.<br />
      <br />