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Disc-based limitations subsection[edit]

"This is seen as a weakness of a disc-based format."

I removed this. Not only is it a weasel phrase, it is flat out wrong. In fact the Disc-based limitations subheading should be renamed, as the problem that it describes has more to do with the design of the filesystem than the fact that it happens to live on a disc. True the problem would be less of one on an electronic medium (primarily due to write speed, and power demand); but there would still be a danger of trashing the system file if power was lost during a write—with the same consequence. A more fault tolerant approach (perhaps involving journaling and redundancy) would greatly lessen the danger, regardless of the medium.
überRegenbogen (talk) 14:33, 11 March 2008 (UTC)

Renamed the subheading to "Disc organisation limitations"
überRegenbogen (talk) 14:42, 11 March 2008 (UTC)

Crippled MP3 playback[edit]

I remember, when the first Walkman units featuring native MP3 playback were released, afficionados on some MiniDisc forums noted that a lowpass filter was implemented to make the MP3s sound very dull compared to ATRAC. This isn’t mentioned at all in the article. — NRen2k5(TALK), 22:16, 14 May 2009 (UTC)

Just as well, as a MiniDisc forum is hardly a reliable source for such an entry. (talk) 10:16, 6 March 2011 (UTC)

How does it work?[edit]

Thi is meant to be an encyclopedia and as such it should state how Hi-MD actually works. It is clearly not just a simple Magneto-Optical system as the laser wavelength has not changed from the common-or-garden MD. There must be something clever going on because the available disc surface area is vastly insufficient for the 790 nanometre laser used. (talk) 16:30, 24 September 2010 (UTC)

This entire article needs to be overhauled and completed with sources. The voice describing the use as a mass storage device seems to be lifted directly from a user manual. Possibly break up "Main Features" Into sub-sections? Format, modes, etc? All three sources from the article are from Sony's website...could create bias? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:16, 6 December 2010 (UTC)

As it's Sony's format, other sources are rather unlikely. (talk) 10:17, 6 March 2011 (UTC)

Critisism Section[edit]

The section on sonic stage reads like a personal rant and thus fails WP:NPOV guidlines. I also believe that it may be original research. There is no evidence that Mini Discs in either guise are encrypted. The recording format may be proprietary but that is not encrypton as such. None of the Sony Mini Disc service manuals in my possession show any encryption or decryption stage in the block or schematic diagrams. Unless evidence of such encryption is provided, I intend to delete this section in its entirety. (talk) 10:03, 12 November 2011 (UTC)

Use of legacy MDLP formats on Hi-MD?[edit]

I'll have to dig my rather dusty old model out of the back of the cupboard to check this, but I could swear blind it allowed use of LP2 and LP4 recording in Hi-MD mode; the only formats that weren't supported on 1Gb (and original MDs re-formatted to 340mb) were the original Stereo and Mono ATRAC, probably because they are rather wasteful of space and offer no quality benefits over the newer encoding types. This is why the Hi-SP and Hi-LP modes are so badly spaced... it allows slotting LP2 and LP4 into the gaps.

(It's more or less the first Hi-MD model Sony released as well - and at the time still somewhat cheaper with a 5-pack of discs than any MP3 player offering ~6Gb capacity, better encoding efficiency, and about as much overall bulk. Too bad they didn't push home their advantage but instead killed the ATRAC format with heavy handed copy restriction such as the infamous issues with uploading home recordings)

However, I'm not so sure of it that I'm going to change the article straight off without having a check, and having the user manual to cite from.

Perceptual quality seemed to go, despite what Sony may claim, along these lines: PCM (1411 kbit) > Hi-SP (256k) > ATRAC Stereo (292k) > LP2 (132k - originally inside a 146k wrapper on original MD) > Hi-LP (64k)==LP4 (66k). They tried to over-stretch Hi-LP and pushed the frequency response higher than it could really support (about 15-16khz) with the result that it tended to sound crashy and overcompressed; LP4 was more modest (about 12-13khz?) and so sounded less stressed, but at the same time a bit dull, like a cheap radio. Which one sounds better is probably a matter of personal preference...

The PC software also offered rates like 176k and 48k (plus LP2 and LP4 hidden as "132k" and "66k", and a never-worked-correctly "105k" which should have been transparent to 128k MP3 if engineered correctly but instead glitched like mad and was unlistenable)...

The former mode was basically as good as original ATRAC, ie transparent to CD unless you were listening very carefully, and the latter almost indistinguishable from LP4 and actually a better space/quality tradeoff than Hi-LP (maybe the PC was allowed a better encoder thanks to much greater processing power?). 176k was pretty much the sweet-spot choice for good quality music recording (at least as good as 192/224k or lower-end VBR MP3 - LP2 itself was about as good as a 160k MP3) and gave over 12 hours of recording time; 48k was still surprisingly listenable once you had a couple of minutes to get used to it, and very handy for carrying the equivalent of 30 cheap C90 cassettes (the worse brands of which had just as bad frequency response) on a single disc... particularly if your sources were poorly encoded 96-128k MP3 downloads which didn't lose much in the translation.

Just a bit of a pain that you couldn't record direct-to-disc in that mode... the software really was bloody awful. I never minded having to record at 1-speed from my Discman (optical out!) to the old MDLP... it's not like you did it on a daily basis, it allowed careful control of timing and could be done with the speakers turned on whilst doing something else. Having to wrestle with Sonicstage took about twice as long overall and it was mute whilst transferring the data... (talk) 09:42, 5 May 2012 (UTC)

SonicStage not avialable for download[edit]

As far as I can see, SonicStage CP/4.3 is no longer avialable for download from any Sony webpage. I've put this onf the SonicStage wiki page, along with some comments on the talk page. Dannman (talk) 13:18, 2 October 2013 (UTC)