24 Bit and the age of Awesome

When I hear the way music sounds coming out of smartphones, I can't help but ask myself how can it be that in a world with technology has come so far is it possible for developers to allow for such poor results in the audio world?  I was talking to a well known music publishing lawyer the other day and we started talking about some of the issues in the business industry. One thing that I brought up is that I really feel that even Mp3s that are sourced out of 24 bit files sound significantly better to my ears than even WAV files at 16 bit. In Bob Katz's book "Mastering Audio" he briefly mentions the fact that if someone has to convert files to Mp3, she's much better off doing so from 24 bit audio source than 16 bit. The obvious reasoning here is lack of floor noise, which is pretty audible to my ears in 16 bit files even after dithering.

In my mind, there's really no excuse to cut corners anymore, especially considering how affordable hard-drive space is these days. With Neil Young's new Hi-Fi digital music system PONO out and about, let's hope that people start making use of the technology we have for music to sound great. This will improve the value of music in the long run and maybe keep the doors of the industry open.