Rock the Vote!: Compact File Sizes or Hi-Fi Audio Quality?

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What format do you prefer for future episodes?

Poll ended at Wed Apr 30, 2008 10:45 am

Compact File Sizes/Lower Audio Quality (80-96 kbps)
5
26%
Bigger File Sizes/Higher Audio Quality (128 kbps)
14
74%
 
Total votes: 19

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Rock the Vote!: Compact File Sizes or Hi-Fi Audio Quality?

Post by Soul Bro Ryu » Tue Apr 22, 2008 10:45 am

Given the requests for the remastered version of Ep. 12 in the bitrate we've released the previous episodes of "Gundamn! @ MAHQ" in, we wanted to gauge the opinions of the listeners and truly find out what you guys prefer.

You decision will affect the release of future eps, starting with 13!
Looking forward to your input, everyone!
Last edited by Soul Bro Ryu on Thu Aug 14, 2008 2:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Destiny_Gundam » Tue Apr 22, 2008 12:41 pm

All I care about is smaller file sizes. Any change in audio quality will go completely unnoticed by my ears. I just need to hear you guys, I don't need to hear the crickets in the background.
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Post by wielder » Tue Apr 22, 2008 2:23 pm

After reading Soul Bro Ryu's explanation of the situation, I could accept either...but my personal preference, which means very little in the grand scheme of things, is for higher quality sound (in both relative and absolute terms). File size per se doesn't really bother me.

Just one question, however...would this automatically affect all episodes regardless of their length, or only those that happen to be ridiculously long?

Not that I'm complaining...I like listening to you guys, it's a good distraction.
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Post by Soul Bro Ryu » Tue Apr 22, 2008 6:41 pm

If Hi-Fi is selected, then all releases will continue to be in 128 kbps. Just in case the episodes run long, I can split them so that the file sizes don't go out of control.

After Ep. 13, the episode lengths should go back down to 80-100 mins, so there should be no reason to split unless we do another mega-episode. These last two eps we recorded were so long because we review one series (Geass) and wrapped up another (00). I shudder to think if we have another showkiller anytime soon.

On the bright side, thatnks to editing these long eps, I've found levels of concentration I never thought I had. Take that, ADD. ^_^
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Post by Chris » Tue Apr 22, 2008 8:09 pm

Soul Bro Ryu wrote:If Hi-Fi is selected, then all releases will continue to be in 128 kbps. Just in case the episodes run long, I can split them so that the file sizes don't go out of control.
If we have episodes split up and there's "Regular Part A" and "Unplugged Part B" it would just create more files and confusion, which is what we want to avoid. I really don't think we should be going down that path.
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Post by Areku » Tue Apr 22, 2008 10:51 pm

For reasons I've already discussed elsewhere, I vote for higher quality/size. But I emphasize that isn't a make-or-break for me. I'd prefer higher quality but if the subsequent increase in file size means alienating other listeners, I urge you guys to reduce the bitrate instead.

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Post by Areus » Wed Apr 23, 2008 1:39 am

Keep the quality baby! But I did not notice a real drop in quality in the last episode. I listen to the show at work with my headphones on in a indoor environment with little to know outside noises or distractions so I get a good solid listen to the show. I never miss a word and I can still hear the background music well. Compared to other podcasts the audio quality is very above average and you guys are the only ones I can think of that always has a song playing under your voices. The mixing for this comes out great. That being said I think you should stick to your guts on this one but don't have a high bitrate and low bitrate and a plugged and unplugged version of each or even a super remastered HD boxset edition with action figure. Podcasting seems hard why make it harded at the end of the day all I wanna do is stay informed and hear some good conversations about the things I love.
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Post by Soul Bro Ryu » Wed Apr 23, 2008 2:02 am

At the end of the day, the last thing I'd want to do is alienate anyone, or worse, overwhelm anyone with too many choices. It's lite going into Starbucks and just wanting coffee when they have all these mad blends on the menu and you feel like a five year old trying to decipher something that should be simple to begin with.

At the same time, I also feel a little torn, providing 128 all of this time, and then switching things up without warning. It's like looking forward to your favorite meal, and after taking that first bite, discovering that the cook cut back on the ingredients.

On top of that, not everyone has a high speed connection. Sure, there isn't as many folks on dial-up anymore, but not everyone has access to 10 to 15 mb/sec worth of downloading bandwidth either, and as large as these files are growing that maybe the only way one could download these files comfortably. On top of that, it makes it hard for anyone who wants to enjoy the show, but has a computer incapable of playing a file a big as, say, Ep. 12 is in it's remastered form.

Guess I've lost my perception of what it's like to not have access a newer pc or a fast connection (man, has working for an ISP spoiled me...), and I definitely have to consider anyone who may be a regular listener but doesn't/hasn't posted here yet. If they're experiencing any of the troubles above, they might stop listening, and honestly, I can't have that happen.

Here's an idea. After V2Buster's request for a separate feed for "Unplugged" episodes, I've been working on uploading the whole catalog of Unplugged to it's own separated RSS. Nothing would change on the main RSS as eps are released, but those who want strictly "Unplugged" can subscribe to that RSS not have to worry about Feed Client a new episode twice over. If I thought of the "Unplugged" edition in the beginning I would have done this from jump, but sadly here we are with an integrated feed. Since many folks subscribe to the main RSS already (especially on iTunes), the last thing I'd want to do is remove "Unplugged" and leave them with no place to find it.

Anyone savvy enough to utilize a RSS feed to pull down episodes, I assume, is also savvy enough to be able to tell what the purpose of that RSS feed would be. If there was a Feed that provided "Unplugged Episodes" only, then I'd hope that those who were only interested in that version of the show would pull episodes from that feed alone.

If I made a feed specifically for "Hi-Fi" eps (which would only be updated with any shows that run extremely long), this might suit the fancy of those who already enjoy the show at 128 kbps.

Most importantly, I'd make sure to to do it in a way that wouldn't overwhelm anyone.

- Nothing would change for the distro for the eps here, on iTunes, or MySpace.

- No reason to split eps and cause bedlam. If an episode runs long, it gets compressed to a bitrate and size that reasonable to download and placed in the main RSS. (Well, a far more reasonable size than 150 Megs...)

- No additional direct downloads for 14 different versions of the same episode would be posted in any blog or thread either, just what you've come to expect: Standard & Unplugged. That's all.

- There would only an advisory underneath referring anyone interested in the "Hi-Fi" edition of a "Showkiller" to subscribe to the feed listed below in the "links" section. No direct links to anything but what is in the Main RSS feed, and if anyone is interested in pursuing the "Hi-Fi" editions, I'm sure they'll go through the trouble of subscribing.

- Using Ep. 12 as an example here's how it would look in a thread here or on "Gundamn! @ MAHQ's" blog site:

Gundamn! @ MAHQ Episode 012: "They Were Elevens" (80 kbps - 90 Megs)
Standard Version - Unplugged Version
Also available in 128k! Subscribe to the "Hi-Fi Feed" in the Links below!

And that's the long and short of it. This won't slow down anyone who wants to grab-the-show-and-go and shouldn't confuse anyone (hopefully). With the show returning to it's original running length in Ep. 14, I doubt I'd have to post "Hi-Fi" versions often, but anytime I do, it's nothing to refer anyone interested to the RSS feed listed out of line of sight with the other links below.

My priority would be to the Main RSS feed first though. After both versions of an episode is uploaded there, I'd worry about the other feeds afterwards. Wouldn't want any releases to be delayed due to prioritizing any vanity feeds over the main one. Just a little "omake" for the audiophiles out there like me that enjoy the show at the current bitrate. ^_^

Anyway, it's just a thought I had and would be no trouble on my end to do as an afterthought.
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Post by Destiny_Gundam » Wed Apr 23, 2008 2:15 am

To be honest, I have no idea what the hell a RSS feed is.
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Post by VentZX » Wed Apr 23, 2008 10:04 am

Better quality sound is worth the extra space.

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Post by Soul Bro Ryu » Wed Apr 23, 2008 10:49 pm

Destiny_Gundam wrote:To be honest, I have no idea what the hell a RSS feed is.
My point exactly ^_^

Those who want the hi-fi eps will go to the trouble of finding out what an RSS is, those that don't will give two...defecations.
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Post by V2Buster » Thu Apr 24, 2008 12:43 am

It would be nice to have a seperate RSS feed for each different type so I don't have to wade through each update or make sure my blogcast feeder downloads the right one, but if it's too much work, meh.

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Post by Areus » Thu Apr 24, 2008 4:49 pm

I'm grateful for the amount of work your putting into mixing and formating the different versions of the show. I know audio editing can be hard. I was wondering if there will be any lag time in the different versions? Will one come out before the others or will you release them all at once?
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Post by Soul Bro Ryu » Thu Apr 24, 2008 11:52 pm

Areus wrote:I'm grateful for the amount of work your putting into mixing and formating the different versions of the show. I know audio editing can be hard. I was wondering if there will be any lag time in the different versions? Will one come out before the others or will you release them all at once?
As far as I concerned, the Main Feed gets first priority, then the "Unplugged" feed, and finally the "Hi-Fi" one if there is a showkiller on deck that had to be compressed.

However, each one is uploaded after the next and within minutes from my end so it's a moot point, really. Shortly after the the thread's up with the mian release, soon after the supplemental feeds will be ready to go too.
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Post by chainsandguns » Sat Apr 26, 2008 6:09 pm

As long as I can hear you guys, and differentiate between the voices I really don't care, because I like many, can't really tell a difference.

soul bro, I'm fine with what ever is easiest for you to do your editing and whatnot man.
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