Quantifying sound quality

Is there a standard way of quantifying sound quality for the purpose of comparing two versions of the same recording? This would be particularly interesting in cases where the bitrate and file size are unreliable or downright meaningless because of subsequent reencoding of low quality source files.

I’ve seen people use spectrograms to determine sound quality visually, but I’m wondering if it could be boiled down to a number or a series or numbers for systematic/automated comparisons.

If not, a tool that facilitates manual side-by-side comparisons would also be useful.

Interesting; I haven’t heard of anything like this! I have never been in the game myself, but I have gotten the impression from people who do this sort of thing that spectrograph analysis cannot be automated, for whatever reason. (I seriously don’t know why.) But people swear by their ability to look at a spectrum and make an educated guess about its quality.

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