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Sound samples

Nine sound excerpts are used for testing at SoundExpert (PCM 44100 Stereo):

  1. [BAH] J.S.Bach, "Easter-Oratorio" (RAR: 954kB)
  2. [BAS] Bass (RAR: 1.2MB)
  3. [CST] Castanets (RAR: 743kB)
  4. [FMS] French Male Speech (RAR: 1.1MB)
  5. [GLK] Glockenspiel (RAR: 1.3MB)
  6. [HRP] Harpsichord (RAR: 854kB)
  7. [LOB] Postscriptum, "You were here" (RAR: 869kB)
  8. [MOF] Mike Oldfield, "Music From The Balcony" (RAR: 1.3MB)
  9. [QRT] Quartet (RAR: 1.1MB)

Samples (2,3,4,5,6,9) are from SQAM disk – the Audio CD issued by European Broadcasting Union (EBU) for sound quality evaluation purposes (Sound Quality Assessment Material, SQAM). The CD could be downloaded from EBU SQAM Page. Also you can find there Users' Handbook for the EBU SQAM CD with details of test signals.


J.S. Bach, Oster-Oratorium

Sample (1) is from CD: J.S. Bach, Oster-Oratorium (from track #1)

Composer: Johann Sebastian Bach
Conductor: Philippe Herreweghe
Performer: Kai Wessel, Peter Kooy, et al.
Ensemble: Collegium Vocale
Label: Harmonia Mundi
Audio CD (March 28, 1995)

Track List:

  1. Easter Oratorio, "Kommt, eilet und laufet," BWV 249
    Performed by Collegium Vocale with Peter Kooy, Barbara Schlick, Kai Wessel, James [tenor] Taylor
  2. Cantata No. 66, "Erfreut euch, ihr Herzen," BWV 66
    Performed by Collegium Vocale with Peter Kooy, Barbara Schlick, Kai Wessel, James [tenor] Taylor



Sample (7) was included as an example of Lo-Fi analog tape recording. Initially it was a demo of indie-group "PostScriptum" on compact cassette. As 5 years passed all audio material from that cassette was digitized by means of conventional sound card. Thus the sample has all the typical drawbacks of home computer recordings made from old tapes – low resolution, heavy noise, drop-outs ...

Song: "You were here"
Author: Lobo
Performer: Lobo, PostScriptum (Russia), Christine Moussot (France)
Recording studio: GAM (Russia)
Copyright: 1997 Lobo, PostScriptum

Original song in slightly different arrangement as well as other Lobo works can be downloaded from the author's corner at (in russian).


Mike Oldfield, Heaven's Open

Sample (8) is from CD: Mike Oldfield, Heaven's Open (from track #6)

Label: Disky Records
Audio CD (May 16, 2000)

Track List:

  1. Make Make
  2. No Dream
  3. Mr. Shame
  4. Gimme Back
  5. Heaven's Open
  6. Music from the Balcony




For almost 20 years SoundExpert is the home for innovative audio measurements and research. Newly developed listener-centric audio metric combines instrumental measurements with listening assessments and helps to perform both more efficiently.

Since 2001 more than 10 000 volunteers participated in distributed blind listening tests on Soundexpert website. Sound quality ratings of 100+ codecs were computed thanks to their time and efforts. You can still take part in them.

Recently we developed a new method for instrumental measurements of audio equipment. It is based on the new audio metric and helps to examine technical performance of an audio device in great detail. Furthermore all audio devices can be grouped according to their sound signatures. The measurement procedure was fine-tuned during two years of beta-testing with 30+ portable devices. Now it is mature enough for production environment. First few tested players can be found on Portable players page.

I hope this new audio metric will attract more audio engineers and enthusiasts as it opens new field of audio research where objective and subjective are not separated anymore. Further advance in the research requires many more different audio devices to be tested - a serious challenge for our non-commercial research project. Fortunately portable players are good test subjects for this research, even the old ones. That's why I need some help from our volunteers again. If you have such old/previous/ex digital portable audio player or a smartphone that was marketed as "HQ audio inside", if it is fully functional but not in use anymore, please, consider donating it to SoundExpert. Its df-measurements will appear on the portable players page. Then it will be either kept for research purposes or sold off supporting the project additionally (or given away to some music lover if it can't be sold for some reason). I'm going to refund your postal expenses but can't confirm this right now. Please, contact me for further arrangements.

Manufacturers of portable devices can order df-measurements for their products. The cost of the work will be equal to retail price of the device. I will buy it and perform standard df-measurements. If you decide I will not publish results during a year.

Today building a comprehensive audio quality map of various audio devices on the market can be done by ourselves - audio consumers. And it's not hard indeed. In the end this will free up some time for listening and discussing Music, not technology )).

Serge Smirnoff
SoundExpert Founder