Random strings and vinyl record top corner

Release Codes

Random String Records discloses the details of its hi-res releases by displaying codes of the engineering techniques used in rendering the digital audio file. Descriptions of techniques appear below. Codes are displayed in parentheses.

Release Type.

Random String Records defines the following release types :

Raw (R). This release type includes all the files used in the recording without change. Tracks may be mastered as mono or stereo and likely produce limited sound stage. File size is small. File format is likely MP3 or AAC with low bit rate and bit depth. No dithering is applied when rendering the release.

Streaming (S). This release type includes all the files used in the recording with limited track volume balancing and peak limiting. The file size is smaller and quality lower as determined by the streaming provider. File format is likely AAC with 44.1k bit rate and 128 kb/s bit depth.

Aggregate (A). This release type includes all the files used in the recording with some engineering. Typically, track volumes are balanced and peak limiting is performed. The sonic signature is analyzed, a sound stage is generated and tracks are mixed in stereo. File size is larger and quality higher than the Streaming release type. File format is likely MP3 with modest bit rate and bit depth, likely 48k and 192 kb/s respectively. Dithering is applied when rendering the release.

Curated (C). This release type includes all the files used in the recording with significant engineering. Typically, track volumes are balanced and peak limiting is performed. The sonic signature is analyzed, a sound stage is generated and tracks are mixed in stereo, quad, or ambisonic. File size is large. File format is likely FLAC or WAV with high bit rate and bit depth. Dithering is applied when rendering the release.

Dithering and Noise Shaping

Background. Recording hi-res audio requires capturing discrete snapshots of the continuous stream of music produced by the musician(s). By the Nyquist-Shannon Sampling theorem under limited circumstances our ears can reconstruct by interpolation the continuous stream of music from the snapshots given a sufficient sampling rate. Chueng and Marks showed that an arbitrarily small amount of noise renders reconstruction of the continuous stream unstable. Dithering is the process of introducing controlled noise into the reconstruction of the continuous stream such that it is stable.

None (N). No dithering or noise shaping are applied to the release.

Narrow Band (NB). Narrow band dithering is applied which adds some low level distortion.

Wide Band (WB). Wide band dithering is applied which resembles analog hiss.