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munkees
Dec 6, 2011, 09:53 PM
ATV2 requires iTunes Match to listen to purchased songs from the iCloud.

I only have purchased music from Apple, but I cannot play them on my Apple TV from the cloud with out paying $24.99 + tax a year to apple. I feel a little played by Apple. Is this the shape of things to come?

I do not see why I should have to have iTunes Match for music I purchased though Apple.



penguy
Dec 6, 2011, 11:35 PM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A405 Safari/7534.48.3)

Why aren't you streaming from your Mac or pc? I would imagine your music is on one of these??

marc11
Dec 7, 2011, 12:35 AM
What did you do before you could blame iTunes match or iCloud? You can home share and you can AirPlay from your macs or iPhone your music onto your Apple TV no problem and no cost. You have never been able to stream paid for music content from the itunes store on any device, so why would you think the atv could do it now or be the exception?

The only previously paid content the atv will stream from iTunes directly are tv shows.

munkees
Dec 7, 2011, 03:20 AM
What did you do before you could blame iTunes match or iCloud? You can home share and you can AirPlay from your macs or iPhone your music onto your Apple TV no problem and no cost. You have never been able to stream paid for music content from the itunes store on any device, so why would you think the atv could do it now or be the exception?

The only previously paid content the atv will stream from iTunes directly are tv shows.

before iTunes match, you could stream from the cloud when Apple introduced the ability of accessing your purchased music. And seeing also ATV2 is storage less it would make sense.

newagemac
Dec 7, 2011, 07:37 AM
before iTunes match, you could stream from the cloud when Apple introduced the ability of accessing your purchased music. And seeing also ATV2 is storage less it would make sense.

I don't think this is correct at all. You could never stream music directly from the cloud on the ATV before. You could stream from your Mac or PC with Home Sharing and you could stream from your iDevice using Airplay.

Streaming your own purchased music directly from iCloud only became possible on the ATV with iTunes Match.

TV shows are the only type that you can stream purchased content directly from the cloud for free.

Darth.Titan
Dec 7, 2011, 09:03 AM
I don't think this is correct at all. You could never stream music directly from the cloud on the ATV before. You could stream from your Mac or PC with Home Sharing and you could stream from your iDevice using Airplay.

Streaming your own purchased music directly from iCloud only became possible on the ATV with iTunes Match.

TV shows are the only type that you can stream purchased content directly from the cloud for free.

You're correct. "Cloud streaming" has never been available to AppleTV 2 before iTunes Match.

I think the OP is confused. The only way to listen to music before was streaming from a computer on the network.

munkees
Dec 7, 2011, 09:15 AM
I don't think this is correct at all. You could never stream music directly from the cloud on the ATV before. You could stream from your Mac or PC with Home Sharing and you could stream from your iDevice using Airplay.

Streaming your own purchased music directly from iCloud only became possible on the ATV with iTunes Match.

TV shows are the only type that you can stream purchased content directly from the cloud for free.

i think you are correct, I got it wrong.

in the past I used airplay

kas23
Dec 9, 2011, 11:20 AM
i think you are correct, I got it wrong.

in the past I used airplay

Damn straight you are wrong. When it comes to problems with Apple products, without fail, it is the end-user who is either wrong or has failed to adapt.

bobobenobi
Dec 9, 2011, 11:26 AM
I am dumber for having read this thread.

davidjmclare
Dec 17, 2011, 03:38 PM
All of my music has been purchased through iTunes too, so there is no reason for me to purchase iTunes Match - other than for streaming through my Apple TV.

Essentially this becomes a 21.99 per year charge to stream music I have paid for. Yes I know I can just play through my laptop - however I do take this away from home and I'm sure other people at home may want to listen to the music.

I hope Apple are listening to the few of us who did not have massive illegal libraries of music and who have been loyal from the start - would be nice to have our iCloud accessible from Apple TV.

In fact, it doesn't make sense. If it was 'stream from iCloud' then you'd still need iTunes Match if you wanted to play all your library (inc. music not bought from iTunes) so why make it connect to iTunes Match?! Just make it connect to iCloud.

davidoloan
Dec 17, 2011, 11:37 PM
Indeed, other than the money Apple pay to the record companies, iTunes Match costs nothing to run. Everybody knows you can build and run a giant server farm like this for next to nothing. In fact I am going to build one in the garden and make squillions undercutting Apple.

http://www.datacenterknowledge.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/10/apple-idatacenter-finished.jpg

All of my music has been purchased through iTunes too, so there is no reason for me to purchase iTunes Match - other than for streaming through my Apple TV.

Essentially this becomes a 21.99 per year charge to stream music I have paid for. Yes I know I can just play through my laptop - however I do take this away from home and I'm sure other people at home may want to listen to the music.

I hope Apple are listening to the few of us who did not have massive illegal libraries of music and who have been loyal from the start - would be nice to have our iCloud accessible from Apple TV.

In fact, it doesn't make sense. If it was 'stream from iCloud' then you'd still need iTunes Match if you wanted to play all your library (inc. music not bought from iTunes) so why make it connect to iTunes Match?! Just make it connect to iCloud.

alphaod
Dec 18, 2011, 03:34 AM
Damn straight you are wrong. When it comes to problems with Apple products, without fail, it is the end-user who is either wrong or has failed to adapt.

So cruel and brutal.

davidjmclare
Dec 18, 2011, 08:11 AM
The point is that iTunes Match is to 'match' your files sourced elsewhere to the iTunes version. Then iCloud is free. So why buy Match when your files are originally iTunes - yes I get your point, put very sarcastically (thanks for that) but in essence it doesn't make sense to pay for Match when your files are from iTunes. In fact, this would only encourage people to download plenty of music by illegal means to justify the cost - something I will not do but I imagine others will. ;)

Indeed, other than the money Apple pay to the record companies, iTunes Match costs nothing to run. Everybody knows you can build and run a giant server farm like this for next to nothing. In fact I am going to build one in the garden and make squillions undercutting Apple.

Image (http://www.datacenterknowledge.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/10/apple-idatacenter-finished.jpg)

peeaanuut
Dec 18, 2011, 02:13 PM
so you dont feel you should pay to be able to stream your music? If people were streaming from your home connection all day and using up your bandwidth and HDD space at home, would you want them to pay? Paying to stream makes sense to me.

Irishman
Dec 19, 2011, 09:47 AM
All of my music has been purchased through iTunes too, so there is no reason for me to purchase iTunes Match - other than for streaming through my Apple TV.

Essentially this becomes a 21.99 per year charge to stream music I have paid for. Yes I know I can just play through my laptop - however I do take this away from home and I'm sure other people at home may want to listen to the music.

I hope Apple are listening to the few of us who did not have massive illegal libraries of music and who have been loyal from the start - would be nice to have our iCloud accessible from Apple TV.

In fact, it doesn't make sense. If it was 'stream from iCloud' then you'd still need iTunes Match if you wanted to play all your library (inc. music not bought from iTunes) so why make it connect to iTunes Match?! Just make it connect to iCloud.

Oy.

iTunes Match is not for everyone. Why would you expect it to be? Do you have money eating a hole in your wallet that you're itching to pay to Apple every year??

iTunes Match is a "get away with piracy card" for users who have collections that were acquired in places other than iTunes. (legal or illegal download, ripping your own CDs, etc).

iTM won't work for me because I'm planning to get into more audiophile-grade music recordings (FLAC, ALAC, etc), and iTM would down-rez those to a mere 320 kbps quality. Not going to help me at all. But do I blame Apple for not making it Lossless-compatible? No, because I know ahead of time that iTM is a car, wheras I need a truck.

blueroom
Dec 19, 2011, 09:53 AM
I bought match the other day, can't say I'm won over yet. No Genius playlists, you will need a decent internet cap and speed, somewhat goofy / random as to what it'll match. I won't renew if it stays in its current form.

whooleytoo
Dec 19, 2011, 12:12 PM
I think the problem is as much a naming issue as anything - you need to pay for iTunes Match for iCloud streaming; even if you have no intention of using the "match" functionality.

What happens if you have iTunes match for 1 year, then stop using it; do you lose the ability to stream to the ATV from the iCloud? (Apologies if this has been answered before).

Moccasin
Dec 19, 2011, 12:29 PM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A405 Safari/7534.48.3)

Actually, I'm going to turn this around. I'm quite impressed that you can now stream your library without having your local library active. I have an MBA and was considering an ATV2 but don't want to have my whole library on the MBA.

Am I right in thinking that I can now keep my iTunes library on my NAS and stream separately to my ATV2 from the cloud? My worry was that having the iTunes library streaming from NAS via MBA to ATV2 would overload my network and make it unusable while streaming.

22 seems quite a good price to keep me going until I can afford a desktop to run iTunes

Dranix
Dec 19, 2011, 12:46 PM
iTM won't work for me because I'm planning to get into more audiophile-grade music recordings (FLAC, ALAC, etc), and iTM would down-rez those to a mere 320 kbps quality.

You know that AAC from 192kbit upward is considered transparent. There is no audible difference to Flac/Alac. 256kbit is a nice safety buffer.

kevinfulton.ca
Dec 19, 2011, 01:15 PM
You know that AAC from 192kbit upward is considered transparent. There is no audible difference to Flac/Alac. 256kbit is a nice safety buffer.

Technically speaking, you're right that the human ear only here's between 20Hz and 20KHz, but it's the overtones and release that you lose. It also changes the mixes since all frequencies are being compressed. Kick has a bit more kick, cymbals sound a little harsher, even "S's" on female voices don't sound quite as smooth. I agree MOST wouldn't hear it, but us musicians do.......unless it's Nickelback then it all sounds the same ;)

davidoloan
Dec 19, 2011, 07:02 PM
[SIZE=1]Am I right in thinking that I can now keep my iTunes library on my NAS and stream separately to my ATV2 from the cloud?

Yes you can. iTunes Match is on the Apple TV2 right now.

What I want to know is if I upload my lossless library now, am I right in understanding that although Apple will stream it in 256 they keep the files as lossless on their server for the ones they don't match (just uploaded) and that in the future will probably stream them as lossless.

Also the matched music will probably be upgraded some time in the future.

If so I would like to upload now. Otherwise I would wait. Who knows for sure?

slothrob
Dec 19, 2011, 10:13 PM
I agree MOST wouldn't hear it, but us musicians do.
I don't know, a lot of us musicians are half deaf!;)
Maybe it's the silences that sound different; less ringing?

chiefpavvy
Dec 19, 2011, 10:23 PM
I know I'm in the minority here on this one, but I actually wish iTunes Match would leave my Apple Lossless tracks LOSSLESS...I don't like them being converted to AAC @ 256. Sure there isn't an audible difference in most cases but I'm a lossless guy and wish they would allow for that.

Phil Lee
Dec 20, 2011, 04:18 AM
I see this an added bonus to the iTunes Match service. It's something I couldn't do before. The only issue I have is I can't use the iOS remote app to play iCloud music on the Apple TV without using the TV screen.

kevinfulton.ca
Dec 20, 2011, 05:41 PM
I don't know, a lot of us musicians are half deaf!;)
Maybe it's the silences that sound different; less ringing?

Exactly! All the music out there has this constant ringing that I can't seem to.........wait a second!! :eek:

SonicStomp
Dec 20, 2011, 11:09 PM
I know I'm in the minority here on this one, but I actually wish iTunes Match would leave my Apple Lossless tracks LOSSLESS...I don't like them being converted to AAC @ 256. Sure there isn't an audible difference in most cases but I'm a lossless guy and wish they would allow for that.

I have a fair amount of lossless my self - but it is no problem. iTunes match will leave them in their original format on your HD if they are > 256 kbps bit rate, it is only the upload that is transcoded to 256 AAC. Best of both worlds - lossless for your local network for home music, more manageable (but much smaller) 256 files for streaming to devices on the go. :)

Alrescha
Dec 21, 2011, 07:20 AM
You know that AAC from 192kbit upward is considered transparent. There is no audible difference to Flac/Alac. 256kbit is a nice safety buffer.

Some may consider it transparent, but I have tracks in both AAC/256 and Apple Lossless where I can pick out the AAC file every time.

One might argue that it's something else in the process and that AAC isn't to blame, but at the end of the day the lossless track sounds better than the compressed track and that's what counts.

A.
(and to stay on topic, I paid for iTunes Match just to mess with it. $25/yr is nothing)

NightStorm
Dec 21, 2011, 07:38 AM
Some may consider it transparent, but I have tracks in both AAC/256 and Apple Lossless where I can pick out the AAC file every time.

One might argue that it's something else in the process and that AAC isn't to blame, but at the end of the day the lossless track sounds better than the compressed track and that's what counts.

A.
(and to stay on topic, I paid for iTunes Match just to mess with it. $25/yr is nothing)

I can pick out the difference between ALAC and 256kbps AAC when listening to my encodes from the handful of DVD-Audio discs that I own (mainly the three Lord of the Rings Complete Collections), but that's about it.

I actually like the way match handles this as I wanted a way to keep the lossless copy in my library while having an AAC version on my iPhone (I also did not want to duplicate the album in my library -- one ALAC and one AAC -- as it makes the library "messy"). I wasn't willing to use the "convert all tracks to 128kps" option in iTunes, but I can now use iTunes Match to accomplish exactly what I wanted.

Scarpad
Dec 21, 2011, 11:15 AM
I subscribed but have turned it off for now untill apple gets a few patches out, as i'm having massive artwork problems with it now. It's nicest feature is streaming from the cloud, but the problem with that for those of us with lossless is streaming lossy files. If it allowed streaming with ios devices (really what you need it for) it would be great, but it doesnt the stuff needs to be downloaded. I prob won't be renewing when it runs out.

Irishman
Dec 21, 2011, 01:01 PM
You know that AAC from 192kbit upward is considered transparent. There is no audible difference to Flac/Alac. 256kbit is a nice safety buffer.

Obviously, I've personally moved beyond the phase where my mind will be changed by forum conversations. But thanks anyway!

KeithJenner
Dec 21, 2011, 02:25 PM
I hope Apple are listening to the few of us who did not have massive illegal libraries of music

In fact, this would only encourage people to download plenty of music by illegal means to justify the cost - something I will not do but I imagine others will. ;)

As you don't seem to understand that there are other means of getting music into iTunes other than iTunes purchases and illegal downloads, I don't think I can really take much else that you say seriously.

jamesvdm
Dec 21, 2011, 05:27 PM
http://dl.dropbox.com/u/313626/stupidchart.jpg

Cardbear
Dec 21, 2011, 06:12 PM
What is a measly $24.99 a year. I didn't have to wait forever to upload my 100 GB of music. Being over 40 I have hundreds of CDs that I imported to iTunes and know I have access to them where ever I go.

Think of it, only .068 cents a day! For a service that no one else offers. All my music, videos, pictures sync'd to what ever Apple device I choose to use.

Steve Got it right. Create everything and offer an unbeatable package!!!

Irishman
Dec 22, 2011, 07:16 PM
What is a measly $24.99 a year. I didn't have to wait forever to upload my 100 GB of music. Being over 40 I have hundreds of CDs that I imported to iTunes and know I have access to them where ever I go.

Think of it, only .068 cents a day! For a service that no one else offers. All my music, videos, pictures sync'd to what ever Apple device I choose to use.

Steve Got it right. Create everything and offer an unbeatable package!!!

Thanks, Apple Employee #2! :)

just kidding

zhenya
Dec 23, 2011, 06:19 AM
Technically speaking, you're right that the human ear only here's between 20Hz and 20KHz, but it's the overtones and release that you lose. It also changes the mixes since all frequencies are being compressed. Kick has a bit more kick, cymbals sound a little harsher, even "S's" on female voices don't sound quite as smooth. I agree MOST wouldn't hear it, but us musicians do.......unless it's Nickelback then it all sounds the same ;)

It is extremely unlikely that in a real blind test you'd be able to tell the difference with properly prepared files. Years of testing have proved this time and time again. While I agree that I want my lossless files at home, Match makes an extremely convenient way for me to listen to my library in a very high quality format on the go or on my computer at work. FWIW, files downloaded from Match and then played in Foobar report ~300kbps bit rate, (vbr) which is pretty damn transparent.

I know I'm in the minority here on this one, but I actually wish iTunes Match would leave my Apple Lossless tracks LOSSLESS...I don't like them being converted to AAC @ 256. Sure there isn't an audible difference in most cases but I'm a lossless guy and wish they would allow for that.

It's been noted above, but be clear that Match does nothing to your source library.

Irishman
Dec 24, 2011, 11:44 AM
Technically speaking, you're right that the human ear only here's between 20Hz and 20KHz, but it's the overtones and release that you lose. It also changes the mixes since all frequencies are being compressed. Kick has a bit more kick, cymbals sound a little harsher, even "S's" on female voices don't sound quite as smooth. I agree MOST wouldn't hear it, but us musicians do.......unless it's Nickelback then it all sounds the same ;)

IF you play it back on a proper headphone amp or DAC.

What is your setup? I'm shopping and am very interested in finding the most cost-effective solution.

Mr. McMac
Dec 24, 2011, 11:58 AM
Damn straight you are wrong. When it comes to problems with Apple products, without fail, it is the end-user who is either wrong or has failed to adapt.

I think you're drinking to much Apple Kool-Aid if you ask me.

kas23
Dec 25, 2011, 10:14 AM
I think you're drinking to much Apple Kool-Aid if you ask me.

I think you didn't detect my sarcasm if you ask me.

The really sad thing is that although my post was seemingly so ridiculously and rude, not one person identified it as obviously fake (or trolling). Likely, because on some level, although very abrupt or "brutal", they must've thought it was reasonable thinking.

kevinfulton.ca
Dec 28, 2011, 11:30 AM
IF you play it back on a proper headphone amp or DAC.

What is your setup? I'm shopping and am very interested in finding the most cost-effective solution.

Absolutely, but it's really more about knowing what to listen for. To be honest where I hear the difference is when a mix is being worked on and we're analyzing it constantly. You'll find a mix that sounds great, then you compress it to a different format for distribution and all the frequencies shift. Particularly the lows and highs. So we're not talking consumer gear here, more professional recordings. As another poster has stated before, compression changes everything no matter how "transparent" it's supposed to be.

As for setups. Haven't bothered purchasing one in years since I listen to most of my music in the car now, but I never recommend headphones and quality audio never comes cheap. They're too hard on the ears and it's hard to find a pair with good imaging. You're also asking somebody that likes things as flat as possible, which isn't very pleasing to the ear for most. That being said, have a look at some nice two channel amps from companies like Denon, Onkyo, Marantz, etc. The more power the better. Match them with a quality set of speakers and you'll have a nice setup. KEF and Paradigm are two of my favorite speaker brands, but with the KEF's you may want to pair them with a small sub since their more of a flat response speaker and don't have much low end. KEF's are also not as efficient so you'll need a more powerful amp to power them. Remember that more power doesn't necessarily mean more volume. It's more about giving more life to your speakers. The more power you give them the more jump they'll have. Also, speakers have a break in period so if they don't quite sound like they did in the store just give them a few months and they'll warm up. Hope that helps!

Irishman
Dec 28, 2011, 01:31 PM
Absolutely, but it's really more about knowing what to listen for. To be honest where I hear the difference is when a mix is being worked on and we're analyzing it constantly. You'll find a mix that sounds great, then you compress it to a different format for distribution and all the frequencies shift. Particularly the lows and highs. So we're not talking consumer gear here, more professional recordings. As another poster has stated before, compression changes everything no matter how "transparent" it's supposed to be.

As for setups. Haven't bothered purchasing one in years since I listen to most of my music in the car now, but I never recommend headphones and quality audio never comes cheap. They're too hard on the ears and it's hard to find a pair with good imaging. You're also asking somebody that likes things as flat as possible, which isn't very pleasing to the ear for most. That being said, have a look at some nice two channel amps from companies like Denon, Onkyo, Marantz, etc. The more power the better. Match them with a quality set of speakers and you'll have a nice setup. KEF and Paradigm are two of my favorite speaker brands, but with the KEF's you may want to pair them with a small sub since their more of a flat response speaker and don't have much low end. KEF's are also not as efficient so you'll need a more powerful amp to power them. Remember that more power doesn't necessarily mean more volume. It's more about giving more life to your speakers. The more power you give them the more jump they'll have. Also, speakers have a break in period so if they don't quite sound like they did in the store just give them a few months and they'll warm up. Hope that helps!

It helps, but it also leaves me with my main question unanswered, sadly.

Does your home setup allow you the ability to HEAR the difference between lossy and lossless formats from files downloaded onto your iDevices?

kevinfulton.ca
Dec 28, 2011, 03:00 PM
It helps, but it also leaves me with my main question unanswered, sadly.

Does your home setup allow you the ability to HEAR the difference between lossy and lossless formats from files downloaded onto your iDevices?

Sorry about that. You caught me babbling. As I said, I haven't bother purchasing a home setup for a while. In the studio? Yes, absolutely. With a high quality home set up? Yes, absolutely. In my car? Not so much. TV speakers? Not at all. So what that tells you is YES I can hear the difference, but when using good gear, but also I know what to listen for. Selling hi-end gear for years teaches you what to listen for so that you can sell the more expensive stuff ;). If somebody came to me and said "here's the exact same mix, but in two different levels of compression" I'd be able to tell them apart and what the differences are. However, let's say the person doing the mixing did a separate mix that compensates for the differences in compression (which they should do!) it would take a lot more time, and multiple listens, to tell the difference. In the end the more compressed would have a slightly harsher sounding top end and that would be the only give away. Listening casually I probably wouldn't hear the difference and it's never been something that nags at me since I listen to most of my music in my car, but if somebody asks "does it sound different" I'll always say "yes" followed by a "..but it depends...."

theSeb
Dec 28, 2011, 03:10 PM
You know that AAC from 192kbit upward is considered transparent. There is no audible difference to Flac/Alac. 256kbit is a nice safety buffer.

That's true with laptop speakers and iPhone earphones. When you move past that sort of equipment you can certainly hear the difference.

----------

I have a fair amount of lossless my self - but it is no problem. iTunes match will leave them in their original format on your HD if they are > 256 kbps bit rate, it is only the upload that is transcoded to 256 AAC. Best of both worlds - lossless for your local network for home music, more manageable (but much smaller) 256 files for streaming to devices on the go. :)

Correct. My entire library is lossless and it's simply too big to carry around with me on the MBA. Now, thanks to iTunes match, I no longer have to muck about with two separate libraries (portable and lossless).

One question though: the album artwork from the cloud shows up on my iOS devices but not on my added MBA. Why?

dgalvan123
Dec 28, 2011, 03:33 PM
I think you didn't detect my sarcasm if you ask me.

The really sad thing is that although my post was seemingly so ridiculously and rude, not one person identified it as obviously fake (or trolling). Likely, because on some level, although very abrupt or "brutal", they must've thought it was reasonable thinking.

That, or you're just not very good at sarcasm.

chrono1081
Dec 28, 2011, 04:39 PM
All of my music has been purchased through iTunes too, so there is no reason for me to purchase iTunes Match - other than for streaming through my Apple TV.

Essentially this becomes a 21.99 per year charge to stream music I have paid for. Yes I know I can just play through my laptop - however I do take this away from home and I'm sure other people at home may want to listen to the music.

I hope Apple are listening to the few of us who did not have massive illegal libraries of music and who have been loyal from the start - would be nice to have our iCloud accessible from Apple TV.

In fact, it doesn't make sense. If it was 'stream from iCloud' then you'd still need iTunes Match if you wanted to play all your library (inc. music not bought from iTunes) so why make it connect to iTunes Match?! Just make it connect to iCloud.

Or do it like everyone else and use Homeshare and stream it for free from your computer.

EDIT: I missed where you said you wanted to do that, but you have to remember Apple pays royalties to stream things vs download, not to mention the sheer cost of operating iTunes match so the cost is passed to the consumer.

Irishman
Dec 28, 2011, 05:19 PM
Sorry about that. You caught me babbling. As I said, I haven't bother purchasing a home setup for a while. In the studio? Yes, absolutely. With a high quality home set up? Yes, absolutely. In my car? Not so much. TV speakers? Not at all. So what that tells you is YES I can hear the difference, but when using good gear, but also I know what to listen for. Selling hi-end gear for years teaches you what to listen for so that you can sell the more expensive stuff ;). If somebody came to me and said "here's the exact same mix, but in two different levels of compression" I'd be able to tell them apart and what the differences are. However, let's say the person doing the mixing did a separate mix that compensates for the differences in compression (which they should do!) it would take a lot more time, and multiple listens, to tell the difference. In the end the more compressed would have a slightly harsher sounding top end and that would be the only give away. Listening casually I probably wouldn't hear the difference and it's never been something that nags at me since I listen to most of my music in my car, but if somebody asks "does it sound different" I'll always say "yes" followed by a "..but it depends...."

So, if I invest in some good B & W's and pair them with a Pioneer Elite SC-57 class-D AVR, and pick up a high-end dedicated iPod DAC that bypasses the digital out of the 30-pin connector, I'll be okay? :P

----------

That's true with laptop speakers and iPhone earphones. When you move past that sort of equipment you can certainly hear the difference.

----------



Correct. My entire library is lossless and it's simply too big to carry around with me on the MBA. Now, thanks to iTunes match, I no longer have to muck about with two separate libraries (portable and lossless).

One question though: the album artwork from the cloud shows up on my iOS devices but not on my added MBA. Why?

theseb,

Okay, please continue with that train of thought. What I'm trying to do is to get you guys to name names of gear that is above and beyond iPod earbuds.

theSeb
Dec 28, 2011, 05:43 PM
Can I assume that you're in Ireland/Europe based on your nick name? If you can solve my album covers problem, then I'll be happy to help. :D

Nah, I'll post some stuff in a separate thread but where you are does make a slight difference hence why I am asking.

kevinfulton.ca
Dec 28, 2011, 05:57 PM
So, if I invest in some good B & W's and pair them with a Pioneer Elite SC-57 class-D AVR, and pick up a high-end dedicated iPod DAC that bypasses the digital out of the 30-pin connector, I'll be okay? :P[COLOR="#808080"]

Of course you don't have to spend THAT much. No need for sarcasm. I believe I suggested some good brands that range in price in previous posts. You'll be spending around $300-$500 (canadian) for a good two channel amp and probably about the same for a pair of good bookshelf speakers. For headphones some good brands are AKG, Sennheiser, and Audio-Technica. At least those are the brands that I've used for studio. Not sure what their consumer models are like. Unfortunately I can't name models, but I have yet to listen to a pair under $200 that sound decent. If I were you I'd go out and have a listen to some just like you would a pair of speakers since it really comes down to personal taste. Best of luck to you!


Okay, please continue with that train of thought. What I'm trying to do is to get you guys to name names of gear that is above and beyond iPod earbuds.[/QUOTE]

theSeb
Dec 28, 2011, 06:34 PM
It all depends on how much you're willing to spend. Sennheiser make some great headphones, but they also make some cheap ones too. AKG and Audio-Technica are also highly regarded. I would also take a look at something from the Grado stable, if the open ear design will not be a problem. They make amazing sound, but the open cans bleed a lot of the sound so they are great if you're in your own room, but not so great elsewhere because people will be disturbed by your music.

The nice thing about good quality headphones is that you would have to spend many times more to achieve the same impact and quality if you're using speakers. I would look for a good quality headphone amp / DAC. I would suggest something like an Audiolab MDAC. It will serve you well for many years before you outgrow it.

This audiophile thing is like a disease if you get into it. Bear in mind that as you look for better and more expensive equipment, the law of diminishing returns applies. In basic terms, a 2000 amplifier may sound x times better than a 1000 amplifier - it does not mean that a 4000 amplifier will sound 2x times better, if you get my drift.

Irishman
Dec 28, 2011, 06:45 PM
Can I assume that you're in Ireland/Europe based on your nick name? If you can solve my album covers problem, then I'll be happy to help. :D

Nah, I'll post some stuff in a separate thread but where you are does make a slight difference hence why I am asking.

I've got Irish ancestry. I currently live in North Carolina, in the US.

bp1000
Dec 28, 2011, 07:09 PM
It all depends on how much you're willing to spend. Sennheiser make some great headphones, but they also make some cheap ones too. AKG and Audio-Technica are also highly regarded. I would also take a look at something from the Grado stable, if the open ear design will not be a problem. They make amazing sound, but the open cans bleed a lot of the sound so they are great if you're in your own room, but not so great elsewhere because people will be disturbed by your music.

The nice thing about good quality headphones is that you would have to spend many times more to achieve the same impact and quality if you're using speakers. I would look for a good quality headphone amp / DAC. I would suggest something like an Audiolab MDAC. It will serve you well for many years before you outgrow it.

This audiophile thing is like a disease if you get into it. Bear in mind that as you look for better and more expensive equipment, the law of diminishing returns applies. In basic terms, a 2000 amplifier may sound x times better than a 1000 amplifier - it does not mean that a 4000 amplifier will sound 2x times better, if you get my drift.

I'm using iTunes match for exactly the same reason. I ripped all my CDs to lossless, too much for my MBA. That iTunes profile streams locally via airport express and optically into a dac and then into a Puresound valve amp. It sounds awesome then equally good are a pair of beyerdynamc dt-250 80ohm headphones plugged into my MBA streaming from match or on my iPhone / iPad. I reckon a dac magic would dramatically improve it even further for computer stuff.

Don't overlook the beyerdynamics, they are expensive but so tonally accurate and dynamic it's unberlievable

theSeb
Dec 28, 2011, 07:10 PM
I've got Irish ancestry. I currently live in North Carolina, in the US.

Well then you have far more choice at better prices than we have. I would look at the Centrance DAC mini CX for your DAC/headphone amp

Dranix
Dec 28, 2011, 07:23 PM
I find it very strange that so many "hear" differences. After all the blind-listening-tests that show that thats not possible so many that do hear a difference? Reminds me heavily on hifi-voodoo...

theSeb
Dec 29, 2011, 02:46 AM
I find it very strange that so many "hear" differences. After all the blind-listening-tests that show that thats not possible so many that do hear a difference? Reminds me heavily on hifi-voodoo...

Plenty of blind tests have shown that most people do hear the difference. It's actually quite obvious so perhaps you're referring to some other tests or are just confused?

This is not voodoo. But $300 power cables for your hifi are voodoo.

bp1000
Dec 29, 2011, 05:56 AM
I find it very strange that so many "hear" differences. After all the blind-listening-tests that show that thats not possible so many that do hear a difference? Reminds me heavily on hifi-voodoo...

Perhaps the a/b tests over at hydrogen audio when listening on portables and similar they don't hear any difference.

But when you are feeding lossless music, optically into a DAC and 3,500 worth of audio kit you can hear a difference.

zhenya
Dec 29, 2011, 09:27 AM
Plenty of blind tests have shown that most people do hear the difference. It's actually quite obvious so perhaps you're referring to some other tests or are just confused?

This is not voodoo. But $300 power cables for your hifi are voodoo.

Links to studies showing this with proper statistical significance please? (For properly encoded, high bitrate files, say 256k or higher).

theSeb
Dec 29, 2011, 02:40 PM
Links to studies showing this with proper statistical significance please? (For properly encoded, high bitrate files, say 256k or higher).

I am afraid that I don't know where to find this on the net. The ones I am referring to are from magazines.

There is one thing to bear in mind. If you're just copying a CD then it's very possible that there won't be a difference between a lossless and lossy encoding since many CDs are terribly compressed in the first place. The source material that you're working with matters.

Alrescha
Dec 29, 2011, 04:33 PM
If you're just copying a CD then it's very possible that there won't be a difference between a lossless and lossy encoding since many CDs are terribly compressed in the first place.

I think you are confusing digital compression and analog audio compression, two completely unrelated things.

A.

theSeb
Dec 29, 2011, 05:55 PM
I think you are confusing digital compression and analog audio compression, two completely unrelated things.

A.

Nope. I am talking how CDs are mastered these days.

http://www.audioholics.com/education/audio-formats-technology/cd-compression-depression

http://www.cdmasteringservices.com/dynamicrange.htm

zhenya
Dec 30, 2011, 07:40 AM
Nope. I am talking how CDs are mastered these days.

http://www.audioholics.com/education/audio-formats-technology/cd-compression-depression

http://www.cdmasteringservices.com/dynamicrange.htm

That still doesn't really have anything to do with the kind of compression used for lossy audio. The maximum dynamic range is determined by the bit depth of the recording. While its true that many modern recordings have a very narrow dynamic range in order to sound 'louder', that doesn't really say anything of relevance about the transparency of lossy compression. I still await some references...

theSeb
Dec 30, 2011, 08:49 AM
That still doesn't really have anything to do with the kind of compression used for lossy audio. The maximum dynamic range is determined by the bit depth of the recording. While its true that many modern recordings have a very narrow dynamic range in order to sound 'louder', that doesn't really say anything of relevance about the transparency of lossy compression. I still await some references...

I've already responded to your post about references. What do you need? Year and month of the magazine?

Onto the new topic, perhaps I am somehow confused. If I take a file that is compressed with a narrow dynamic range and rip into wav then encode into lossless and a lossy format like AC3 format my expectations are that the differences between the two files would indeed be heard to hear in a blind test. However, if I take a high quality master and encode into both lossless and lossy, I would expect the difference to be pronounced when played back via a decent DAC + Headphones.

I am not an expert on this by any means. I am a software architect / consultant with an interest in audio so I am keen to "hear" where my understanding has gone wrong.

Alrescha
Dec 30, 2011, 10:15 AM
Your links confirm that you are mixing up two completely separate and distinct uses of the word 'compression'. Audio compression has been used for decades, long before CDs, most notably in FM radio. It has to do with 'dynamic range' - the difference between the loudest and the softest passages in an audio program. Think of a classical music program with an almost silent violin intro at the beginning and a fantastic crescendo at the end.

The articles you mention are lamenting the fact that although CDs have fantastic dynamic range, the record industry wastes this and creates products where the violin at the beginning of the piece is as loud as the finale - turning up the gain during the quiet passages and turning it back down again during the loud sections. This is called 'compression' in the audio world. It is used a lot in popular music today, and it's really sad.

The fact that computers have brought us digital audio and ways of making things smaller using a process called 'compression' has nothing to do with audio compression.

A.

theSeb
Dec 30, 2011, 11:34 AM
Your links confirm that you are mixing up two completely separate and distinct uses of the word 'compression'. Audio compression has been used for decades, long before CDs, most notably in FM radio. It has to do with 'dynamic range' - the difference between the loudest and the softest passages in an audio program. Think of a classical music program with an almost silent violin intro at the beginning and a fantastic crescendo at the end.

The articles you mention are lamenting the fact that although CDs have fantastic dynamic range, the record industry wastes this and creates products where the violin at the beginning of the piece is as loud as the finale - turning up the gain during the quiet passages and turning it back down again during the loud sections. This is called 'compression' in the audio world. It is used a lot in popular music today, and it's really sad.

The fact that computers have brought us digital audio and ways of making things smaller using a process called 'compression' has nothing to do with audio compression.

A.
Ok. So there is a distinct difference between dynamic range compression and data compression. I have always assumed that the algorithms used were similar, but my question above stands.

The other suggestion floating around here is that a lossy data compression of music does not result in a noticeable difference to the human ear. I would still beg to differ.

Perhaps it would be fruitful for us to discuss in depth how music is actually produced from the recording studio until it ends up in our ears. I think that would be quite interesting. I am particularly interested in where sites like HD Tracks get their songs from.

Dranix
Dec 30, 2011, 12:12 PM
A simple example anyone can test: Take a photo and save it as jpg in different qualities. At some point no difference between photo and jpg is visible anymore. jpg is as lossy as aac or mp3 - From a certain point there is no noticeable difference anymore.

Penquin79
Dec 30, 2011, 12:17 PM
Big point that is being missed but was alluded to. Say you only have one lap top computer that has your music files that is out of the house and someone else at home wants to listen to music. Certainly $24.00 a year to be able to stream is a lot cheaper than having a second computer that needs to be replaced every 5 to ten years, a hell of a lot cheaper. And on top of that you don't even have to pay for the electricity to run it!!! Itunes Match really is a great deal from that point of view, cheapest second source for your files that you can imagine.