Click here to hear the original.
Click here to hear "mastered" version.
Note the crackling noise of the second. This is called quantization noise. All audio data, including commercial CD has it. The issue, however, is that the more bits per word (or sample) you use, the less the quantization noise. 16-bit audio data (normal CD-quality) is not 2, but 256 times less affected by quantization noise than 8-bit audio data. 8-bit audio data is used primarily for computer game or Internet applications in which memory constraints are more important than sound quality. Somehow, we seem to have been given a CD whose audio data at some point was coverted DOWN to 8-bit, or perhaps 12-bit.
Below are links to five images from my audio processing software, "Sound Forge". Notice the squarish look to the upper, 'mastered' waveforms. It is these sharp, square edges which produce the noise. This is also due to the reduction in the number of bits per word (sample) in the audio data.
Click here for image #1.
Click here for image #2.
Click here for image #3.
Click here for image #4.
Click here for image #5.
This is not a nit-picky technical thing. This is a serious fuck-up.
You can hear the difference yourself in the audio samples above.
This master that this guy made CANNOT be used.
Please contact me after you've seen these.