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Thread: [PSA] FFXV OST Tracks That Suffer Clipping

  1. #1
    Grand Shriner
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    Exclamation [PSA] FFXV OST Tracks That Suffer Clipping

    I recently made a thread [Hidden link. Register to see links.] where I noticed an anomaly on the track "OMNIS LACRIMA" which sounded like "Crackling" at points throughout the track. I had found several versions of the same track and some suffered the issues while others did not.

    After looking into it more, what I discovered is that that the periodic "Crackling" sound is where the track is clipping. You can see this on the below image.






    As I had only compared other tracks by ear, I decided to compare more tracks objectively to see if it's a problem with the 96/24 (Bluray) version of the OST but this didn't seem to be the case as "Galdin Quay" appeared ok in both versions. It seemed like it was limited to the 96/24 version of "OMNIS LACRIMA"...?






    I recalled suspecting the track "Somnus (Instrumental Version)" when I was doing a listening comparison but it wasn't as obvious there (to me at least). Except as I dug further, I found that it indeed does suffer from clipping as well. You can see this below. The plot twist is that it's now the 44/16 version of the track that clips!






    I'd love to hear from someone who knows what's going on. I can't imagine the mastering process missed all of this. Is this a ripping issue? What I don't understand is why it's so inconsistent. I'm going to try and create a combined OST that preserves non-clipped tracks from both but if somebody already has this, it would save me a whole lot of trouble.

    PS. I curate my OSTs so I won't have every single track analyzed, only the ones I've kept.

    Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Grand Shriner
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    Just a quick update to mention that both versions seem to be a mixed bag. Here's "Veiled in Black". I have no idea what the heck happened. The 44/16 version has clipping while the 96/24 version seems to have been compressed.






    Here's another comparison marking where the clipping is occurring on the 44/16 track





    I went through most of the album and on average, the 96/24 versions seem to be the better versions but sometimes the 44/16 versions are mastered better. To be clear though, I found 44/16 versions of the OST that still exhibited the clipping from the 96/24 version of the OST (likely because they were based off the same source and downsampled). The "clean" version of the 44/16 OST though had better a version of "OMNIS LACRIMA" that didn't clip, this was the most obvious. Other tracks where the 44/16 version seemed better (again, from a particular 44/16 source, not all of them) was "Stand Your Ground", "Noctis", "Altissia - Gondola Ride", "Hydraean's Wrath", "What a Hoot", and "Somnus Ultima".

  3. #3
    Grand Shriner
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    I'm surprised that this thread hasn't received any real input. I would've thought that this community in particular would be quite critical of a big release such as this one.

    Anywho, after all of my work, I thought I'd share with anyone who may care. FWIW, I personally curate all of my OSTs and only end up keeping the tracks that I find merit listening to multiple times. On top of that, I sometimes do further edits to the tracks themselves to cut out certain portions (sometimes the intro/ending is too long, etc. so I cut it out). Nonetheless, I still keep all of the original versions as well as any tracks I exclude in a separate folder just in case they're needed. So here you will find an archive with the actual curated selection as well as the excluded tracks under separate archives.

    Details of the curation can be found in the "Comments" section of each track (no comment implies nothing was done).

    Final Fantasy XV OST - Curated Selection of Volume 1 & 2

    Format: FLAC
    Source: Multiple (see notes) - 96/24 Bluray and 44/16 CD

    Curated Selection:
    Spoiler!


    Excluded Selection & Original Version of Modified Tracks:
    Spoiler!

  4. #4
    Onion Kid mana_fox's Avatar
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    Usually the 24bits releases uses a different audio masters than the CD ones. Similary CDs and Vinyls uses different audio masters.
    That mastering is not even that bad if you compare it to pop music.

    I'm considering buying the CD of SONY Classical version, the international release. It's for less than 30€(1€ = 1$) on Amazon, but I dont know if it's the same as the Square-Enix Japan one. Do you have both version to compare?

    Quote Originally Posted by Alexandero2 View Post
    I'm surprised that this thread hasn't received any real input. I would've thought that this community in particular would be quite critical of a big release such as this one.
    Probably because you need a pretty expensive equipment to notice the difference. What mainstream device can actually output (not just read) 24bits or 96KHz? Most people just listen to music on their phones and are happy with it, look at Spotify or Apple Music apps killing it. Most people will just listen to MP3 320Kbps.

    Anyway, if you actually want quality music the only way is to rip it yourself. Those 24bits 96Khz versions could be a MP3 128Kbps with noise added and saved as a FLAC.

  5. #5
    Grand Shriner
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    Quote Originally Posted by mana_fox View Post
    Usually the 24bits releases uses a different audio masters than the CD ones. Similary CDs and Vinyls uses different audio masters.
    That mastering is not even that bad if you compare it to pop music.
    Sure, I wouldn't classify it as "bad", only that it was flawed in some rather simple way (which seems surprising for such a high profile release). To top it off, it's not like the 24-bit source is the better or worse one, there's a separate 16-bit source that seemed to hold the "superior" master. Of course, there's a chance that the 16/44 source was downsampled from the 24/96, so I guess there's that ambiguity too.

    Quote Originally Posted by mana_fox View Post
    I'm considering buying the CD of SONY Classical version, the international release. It's for less than 30€(1€ = 1$) on Amazon, but I dont know if it's the same as the Square-Enix Japan one. Do you have both version to compare?
    Sorry, I do not. I'd be more inclined to if I was sure it would be better.

    Quote Originally Posted by mana_fox View Post
    Probably because you need a pretty expensive equipment to notice the difference. What mainstream device can actually output (not just read) 24bits or 96KHz? Most people just listen to music on their phones and are happy with it, look at Spotify or Apple Music apps killing it. Most people will just listen to MP3 320Kbps.
    The crackling on OMNIS LACRIMA @ 1:24 is quite audible and not subtle at all. All I can say is that it's brief (couple of seconds) and while I do have high-end equipment, the flaw can easily be heard in average setups as well, even when compressed to MP3. Although, to be clear, this isn't a compression issue or some argument about differing quality between formats, it seems like a mastering issue.

    Quote Originally Posted by mana_fox View Post
    Anyway, if you actually want quality music the only way is to rip it yourself. Those 24bits 96Khz versions could be a MP3 128Kbps with noise added and saved as a FLAC.
    While that has happened in the past and can be the case for a lot of what people download, you can see signs of that kind of conversion in the spectrograms. There are none such signs here so its hard to argue its a lossy compression issue.

  6. #6
    Onion Kid mana_fox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alexandero2 View Post
    Sure, I wouldn't classify it as "bad", only that it was flawed in some rather simple way (which seems surprising for such a high profile release). To top it off, it's not like the 24-bit source is the better or worse one, there's a separate 16-bit source that seemed to hold the "superior" master. Of course, there's a chance that the 16/44 source was downsampled from the 24/96, so I guess there's that ambiguity too.
    Probably they have the same source, but they were adapted for each release.

    Quote Originally Posted by Alexandero2 View Post
    The crackling on OMNIS LACRIMA @ 1:24 is quite audible and not subtle at all. All I can say is that it's brief (couple of seconds) and while I do have high-end equipment, the flaw can easily be heard in average setups as well, even when compressed to MP3. Although, to be clear, this isn't a compression issue or some argument about differing quality between formats, it seems like a mastering issue.

    While that has happened in the past and can be the case for a lot of what people download, you can see signs of that kind of conversion in the spectrograms. There are none such signs here so its hard to argue its a lossy compression issue.
    It can happen. For example, the movie your name. / Kimi no na wa. has an artifact in a scene of the US Blu-Ray.
    This OST has a lot of tracks, so maybe they slipped something.
    All that.

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