Apogee UV22HR Dithering Questions

Hello everyone,

I have a few questions concerning the Apogee UV22HR dithering plug-in. Before you read, please understand that before posting this I have read everything available, the Operation Manual, Plug-in Reference, Wikipedia, the Apogee website, and a few more without completely understanding what I am to do. I am recording my piano with a CI1 (which records at 24 bit/48 kHz). My question is: where do I go from here as far as dithering? My audio will eventually be burned to CD after it is exported as a WMA file through the Audio Mixdown. More specifically, should I dither to 24 bit or 16 bit? I guess I can’t quite figure out if I’m dithering from the 24 bits I recorded at or the 32 bit resolution that Cubase uses internally. And, finally, at what bit depth and sample rate should I export my audio at? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,
Bane

Regular CD quality is 16 bit 44100 Hz, but as you’re burning to WMA I’m guessing it’ll be a data disc and not an actual music disc.
Arguably you will not notice much effect from dithering because you are converting to WMA anyway, but that’s another story.

Thanks Strophoid!

I have just been exporting as a WMA cause that is the only format my Walkman MP3 player will accept, except of course MP3. I’m guessing a Wave file will be better for CD burning? Excellent, I’ve checked it out on Cubase, better options. So, my questions remain, how should I dither and export? :slight_smile:

It’s best to insert the dither plugin in insert slot 7 or 8 on your master output (they are post-fader, which means EQ etc cannot affect the dither). Dither to 16 bit and export to Wav 16-bit 44100Hz and you should be set.
I’m not an expert on this matter though, and in a blind test I can probably not even hear the difference :wink:

Thank you very much Strophoid! This will really come in handy. :smiley:

One common misunderstanding here. You don’t dither to anything. Dithering is not a process, but an extra step in process called quantization. It’s purpose is to reduce quantization distortion. Here’s quite nice article about dithering: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dither

(Sorry 'bout the rant, but I just HATE, when people are talking about “dithering to”.)

Anyway. You should always keep the original bit-depth and sampling frequency of your audio until the very last step: mastering. There you should convert your audio into 44.1kHz/16 bit (uncompressed format such as WAV) in case of target media being a CD. And during that conversion process you should apply dithering to keep your audio quality as good as possible.

Surely Dither is noise added in the process of re-quantising?

Exactly. It’s adding something … not going to something.

There’s not really a convenient way to use dithering as a verb though, dithering for 16 bit perhaps?

Oops! I thought I heard dither to mentioned somewhere…
In lack of better words, I decided on that. What is the proper way of using it as a verb?

BTW that’s the same Wiki article I tried to read earlier. I seem to understand the majority of it, but some of the details are kinda tricky without an audio engineering degree.

You can here it everywhere. Even in context: “dither down to 44.1kHz from 96kHz”. Some people keep using it as a synonym for both sample rate and sample depth conversion.

I think the trouble is that some plugins that offer dither also re-sample but are just called dither e.g UV22, so for the less pedantic of us the general term, “to dither to”, has become the norm.