The (perceived?) degradation of audio quality

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manpaint
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The (perceived?) degradation of audio quality

Post by manpaint »

Disclaimer: I have a disorder that make me hear more sound/decibels than I should. This might have an affect on what I am about to describe, so bear that in mind.

I am experiencing something that I have never seen anyone talk about. In recent year I started to realize that the sound quality of some newly released (video-game) music on the internet are in seemingly lower quality.

I am not talking about the art/music itself, but rather there is something very wrong with the audio compression/processing. Those music files/videos sounds like they have been stretched. Kind of linke when you mess around in Audacity and create ear-bleeding material.

Some Youtube videos I have noticed the phenomenon in:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmjJmLCBgDY (Some Genshin Impact fan-made music track)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2o_PBYrUNcY (Final Fantasy VII Remake battle theme)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pVZ2NShfCE8 (Terminator 2 main theme)

I have also noticed that the effect I am describing is nowhere to be found in Japanesse media. Perphaps this is caused by some obscure western audio mixing industry standard?

This also not limited to YouTube. I can hear it if I play the audio file in Foobar2000 or on my Nintendo DS. I also seem to witness it when movie plays on television, but it's hard to tell as I barely watch any TV. I have also resented it while listening from audio tracks that were datamined directly from the demo of FF7R, so I doubt it's directly caused by compression.

At first I thought it might have been caused by my ear problem, but when listening to old music in MP3 library I do not see this phenomena. If it were caused by a worsening ear condition over the year, I would have probably noticed it while listening to some of my 5 866 MP3 files. It is as a new audio standard was set recently or something. As I can hear the effect on the Terminator 2 main theme, that would mean that it only just caught up with the video game industry recently.

My theory is that it has something to do with either music mixing tools used by big compagnies or the samples/instruments used to create the music itself.

Pease let me know if I am slowly losing my mind or if you guys notice the same thing.
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