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How Can Sample Rates Be Properly Compared in Terms of Audio Quality?

A listening test was designed to compare audio quality using varying sample rates. A Yamaha Disklavier player piano was used as a repeatable acoustic source, and the signal from the microphone preamps was sent to three identical analog to digital converters of the same make and model. The digitized signals were then re-converted to analog and compared to the original "live" signal through the use of a four-way switcher. Sample rates were 44.1, 96, and 192 kHz. Technical setup and the "somewhat inconclusive" results are discussed, along with some possible options for future testing.

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AES - Audio Engineering Society