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umbilical
Oct 19, 2008, 12:31 AM
hi there, I want rip my cd collection with itunes on aac on the high quality possible, so I think that most quality possible is this: (see the picture) right?

thanks



greg555
Oct 19, 2008, 01:16 AM
Turning on VBR may help too. It lets the encoder use a higher bit rate during "difficult" sections of the music.

Greg

emt1
Oct 19, 2008, 01:42 AM
320 AAC is a waste. If you're going to go that crazy over audio quality... why not just use Apple Lossless or FLAC?

Turning on VBR may help too. It lets the encoder use a higher bit rate during "difficult" sections of the music.

Greg

VBR would be useless in this case because 320 is the maximum possible bit rate that iTunes will use for encoding.

eXan
Oct 19, 2008, 03:09 AM
I don't notice any difference between 128kbps AAC and the original CD on my huge expensive stereo speakers in the living room.

I now rip to 256kbps "just in case". I'm sure 320 is a total waste of space.

SactoGuy18
Oct 19, 2008, 06:42 AM
If you use AAC format, try ripping it at 256 kbps VBR. I've tried that and the difference between AAC 256 kbps VBR and the original CD is so small that you need a really expensive stereo system (way beyond what most of use could afford! :) ) to tell the difference between the two.

Going Apple Lossless doesn't work unless you have a "classic" iPod with a 60 GB or bigger hard disk on the player, since Apple Lossless files are still quite large in size.

umbilical
Oct 20, 2008, 02:24 AM
320 AAC is a waste. If you're going to go that crazy over audio quality... why not just use Apple Lossless or FLAC?


VBR would be useless in this case because 320 is the maximum possible bit rate that iTunes will use for encoding.

I compare a 320 rip with a apple lossless:

5min song
320 AAC : 11mb
Apple Lossless : 30mb
WAV: 50mb

Sound: I DONT HEAR THE DIFERENCE!!!! I HEAR THE SAME THING! same clear and perfect sound like the cd! maybe technically have difference but the human hear can listen the difference??? I hear the same seriously! FLAC and Apple Lossless if for nerds! haha

thanks

Sesshi
Oct 20, 2008, 07:36 AM
Sound: I DONT HEAR THE DIFERENCE!!!! I HEAR THE SAME THING! same clear and perfect sound like the cd! maybe technically have difference but the human hear can listen the difference??? I hear the same seriously! FLAC and Apple Lossless if for nerds! haha

thanks

Most people wouldn't, especially when you're using the iPod in it's normal environment - portable use. But the feeling of wanting to convince yourself that you're better different while doing nothing genuinely better can be quite powerful - as you can see by the sheer number of deluded Apple users for a start, but that's another kerosene-fuelled thread for another day ;)

VBR lowers your bitrate when the music doesn't need to use the full set bitrate - the number you set is the baseline highest bitrate. This means that a file which is audibly identical to 256K CBR can be in some cases considerably smaller when using 256K VBR. The limitation on iTunes VBR settings would presumably be for reliability reasons, and not because '320K is the highest'.

I only avoid VBR because of past history of bad VBR support on iPods (in both MP3/AAC) and also on some other players. I doubt it's a problem nowadays but I still stick to 256K CBR MP3 for all of my portable music - which is a good hedge of quality vs space and of course the almost guaranteed compatibility whatever I get. If you want the added reassurance of the best Lossy quality for frequent casual at-home use and intend to stick with the iPod, then I'd go 320K AAC.

Unless you're listening seriously more at home than portably I don't really see the point of going Lossless. Even if you're archiving, if you don't listen at home I'd say archive it to FLAC but transcode the lot to AAC or MP3 before use.

Julien
Oct 20, 2008, 10:33 AM
HD space is getting cheeper and larger by the minute so why waste your time ripping to lossy when you could go ahead and use Apple Lossless from the get go.;)

umbilical
Oct 20, 2008, 11:11 AM
mmm thanks guys, so big the decision to me, 320 AAC or Apple Lossless mmm... ???

and othe little question FLAC vs Apple Lossless? I dont know the diference but Iam a mac user so I prefer Apple Lossless

thanks

umbilical
Oct 20, 2008, 11:12 AM
HD space is getting cheeper and larger by the minute so why waste your time ripping to lossy when you could go ahead and use Apple Lossless from the get go.;)

thats true... HD space is getting cheeper :) I have a mac pro with 4tb option

emt1
Oct 20, 2008, 01:20 PM
Seriously... just use 256 kb/s AAC. You will never know the difference.

Galley
Oct 20, 2008, 06:41 PM
From my testing, anything higher than 192Kbps VBR AAC is overkill. I still recommend using lossless, though. :cool:

MowingDevil
Oct 20, 2008, 07:58 PM
In a nutshell what exactly is Apple Lossless?

lostless
Oct 21, 2008, 01:14 AM
In a nutshell what exactly is Apple Lossless?

Apple lossless, like a zip file, is compressed data where NOTHING is lost when uncompressed. When played back, the audio file sounds IDENTICAL to the original cd.
MP3 and AAC, on the other-hand, throw out data permanently that does effect the sound of the audio file. Thing is that Mp3 and AAC are designed to throw data out that supposably the human ear cant hear. They dont always get it right and some artifacts can be heard. The higher the bit rate, the less it will throw out, but still has a loss.

umbilical
Oct 21, 2008, 11:30 AM
Apple lossless, like a zip file, is compressed data where NOTHING is lost when uncompressed. When played back, the audio file sounds IDENTICAL to the original cd.
MP3 and AAC, on the other-hand, throw out data permanently that does effect the sound of the audio file. Thing is that Mp3 and AAC are designed to throw data out that supposably the human ear cant hear. They dont always get it right and some artifacts can be heard. The higher the bit rate, the less it will throw out, but still has a loss.

Great explanation! I read a lot about this and that resume all! so one thing that I think, if the Human Hear cant difference between by example a 320AAC vs a Original CD playing... why think a lot in which use? is better minus mb space, is like create by example: "a picture with 10 ten colors but the human eye just can see 2" or something like that... you understand my point?

thanks

lostless
Oct 21, 2008, 11:50 AM
Great explanation! I read a lot about this and that resume all! so one thing that I think, if the Human Hear cant difference between by example a 320AAC vs a Original CD playing... why think a lot in which use? is better minus mb space, is like create by example: "a picture with 10 ten colors but the human eye just can see 2" or something like that... you understand my point?

thanks

In essence you are correct. I can't hear the difference of a 128Kb/s AAC and the original CD depending on the song. Just at 128Kb/s, I usually can hear a slight distortion on the high end and a loose bass. At 160/s AAC I usually hear no difference. Just experiment and see what sounds good to YOU.

umbilical
Oct 21, 2008, 01:17 PM
and the difference between flac and apple lossless? I prefer apple stuff...

ChrisA
Oct 21, 2008, 02:06 PM
hi there, I want rip my cd collection with itunes on aac on the high quality possible, so I think that most quality possible is this: (see the picture) right?

thanks

The best quality is "losses". But manu people can't hear the difference between 256K ACC and lossless. To hear it you need both (1) Very good (expenive) equipment and (2) an educated listenier.

Both really are needed. What I found was that for most music the compressed formats were not bad but the 1% of it, that means short passages of all kinds of music (From Bjork to Clapton to classical to jaz) I hear can pretty noticeable "crunches" there AAC and MP3 failed badly. Some times it would be a percusion sound that was badly distorted or some sound of an eltronic keyboard that was whacked badly. But never the entire track I experimented with the setings and re-ripped but just could not find anything that worked 100% But then I was listening using a pair of large size head phone of a type commonly used by engineerrs in recording studios or on a large pair of old 1970's vintage Infinity speakers and I was listening carefully.

I had togo back and re-rip about 600 CDs to Apple lossless format. The sound now is bit for bit just like the CD (be that good or bad) and I'l never have to re-rip those CDs again. I can always convert lossless to AAC or whatever is inuse 15 years from now. Oh, and space is so cheap why care about space? I just bought a 1TB drive for $150.

On the other hand my 17 year old son uses blown out Apple earbuds and has very poorly ripped MP3 tracks and he does not care because he "can still hear it".

JonHimself
Oct 21, 2008, 07:57 PM
and the difference between flac and apple lossless? I prefer apple stuff...

As far as I know, they're different formats that are the same thing - both provide a lossless copy of the original audio source. FLAC isn't supported in iTunes (on a mac)... I think.. but with a program like XLD, can be converted to Apple Lossless.

My two cents on the quality issue is to use both. I've finally settled on ripping in Apple Lossless, adding in information to the comments section (I add producer, label and recording studio), then moving that file to an external hard drive. I'll rip the lossless copy at 256 AAC CBR for my iTunes/iPod. Certainly overkill.. but one day when I don't have a laptop, I'll hopefully have a separate iTunes library of just lossless files.

If you're worried about the difference between 320, 256, 192, 128 etc etc... here's my advice. Take a song you REALLY know well. Rip that one song in Apple Lossless format. Find a 10-15 second part of the song, go into the song information and change the start and end time to that 15 second period. Rip the song at 320 kbps, 256 kbps, 192 kbps etc etc and you'll end up with 3-4 (how ever many rips you go with) copies of that 10-15 sec clip. Put iTunes in shuffle mode, close yours eyes and hit play. Listen to each clip and see if you can tell which sounded the best. Do that again, and again, again and see if you get the the same file each time.. if you get a different file each time them maybe it doesn't matter to you which you use.

umbilical
Oct 21, 2008, 11:54 PM
The best quality is "losses". But manu people can't hear the difference between 256K ACC and lossless. To hear it you need both (1) Very good (expenive) equipment and (2) an educated listenier.

Both really are needed. What I found was that for most music the compressed formats were not bad but the 1% of it, that means short passages of all kinds of music (From Bjork to Clapton to classical to jaz) I hear can pretty noticeable "crunches" there AAC and MP3 failed badly. Some times it would be a percusion sound that was badly distorted or some sound of an eltronic keyboard that was whacked badly. But never the entire track I experimented with the setings and re-ripped but just could not find anything that worked 100% But then I was listening using a pair of large size head phone of a type commonly used by engineerrs in recording studios or on a large pair of old 1970's vintage Infinity speakers and I was listening carefully.

I had togo back and re-rip about 600 CDs to Apple lossless format. The sound now is bit for bit just like the CD (be that good or bad) and I'l never have to re-rip those CDs again. I can always convert lossless to AAC or whatever is inuse 15 years from now. Oh, and space is so cheap why care about space? I just bought a 1TB drive for $150.

On the other hand my 17 year old son uses blown out Apple earbuds and has very poorly ripped MP3 tracks and he does not care because he "can still hear it".

hey Chris that is so interesting really, I ask that because I have a lot cds too that I want convert to digital... and I want the best sound possible, and yes maybe that true too, I have a great computer a macpro 08 but I have a suck speakers from a old dell... 2 little harman kardon... I want buy a new Bose Speakers...

about the HD space mmm, well your 600cds is around 240GB right? if you convert to 320 the size can be 80GB... I have around 2500 digital albums and around 100cds to convert...

well maybe apple sell the music with apple lossless, now suck at 128kbps... itunes plus is better 256...

so apple lossess sound good for me, my mac pro hold 4tb... :D

any recommendation for a new speakers? brand?

thanks chris

umbilical
Oct 21, 2008, 11:57 PM
other interesting question to me, I have some SACD and the new SHM quality from japan... or the 5.1 if rip to Apple Lossless lose quality???

thanks ;)

Beric
Oct 22, 2008, 12:34 AM
I use 256, and am perfectly happy with the quality.

chewbaccacabra
Oct 22, 2008, 03:20 AM
I rip my CDs at 320kbs AAC and have for a while now.

But have I been under a mistaken impression that 128kbs AAC is better than 128kbs MP3? ITunes purchases or CD rips both.

Julien
Oct 22, 2008, 08:36 AM
other interesting question to me, I have some SACD and the new SHM quality from japan... or the 5.1 if rip to Apple Lossless lose quality???

thanks ;)

SA-CD uses DSD which is fundamentally deferent than LPCM. DSD is 1 bit and uses noise shaping for dynamic range. If you can get past the PSP copy protection you would have to transcode the DSD to LPCM before you could use it. Transcoding by definition will be a loss because it must change the data structure. Also no computer drive (that I know of) will read the DSD layer.

Most SA-CD's are hybrids with a Red Book layer. If you put the SA-CD in your CD/DVD-ROM it will read this layer and give you a standard CD rip.

umbilical
Oct 22, 2008, 01:39 PM
Now I decide goes for Apple Lossless, so geek but I want the best ;)

thanks guys

System 6
Oct 22, 2008, 07:31 PM
I hear can pretty noticeable "crunches" where AAC and MP3 failed badly.
I've been having trouble hearing any difference between lossless and AAC, even at 128. Is there any chance you could post some snippets of tracks so that I know what to listen for? Sorry to have to ask, but this has been bugging me for a long time, and it would serve as a great example for others. I thought that I had good hearing, and my sound setup is fairly good too, so I really wonder what it is that I'm missing.

mcjfsn
Oct 22, 2008, 09:12 PM
First let me say that I can tell the difference between 128 and Apple Lossless - even in my car. There is an airiness with lossless files that seems to be squashed when using any compression. It is hard to quantify and for a lot of the time there is no audible difference, but if a cymbal in the middle of a Van Morrison song sounds clipped - it really annoys me and spoils the whole song.

Having said that, an equally important factor is how well the CD is ripped, and for that, iTunes falls apart. I took a look at waveforms in a pro app and found several spikes that are in fact little clicks in the audio. I now use "Max" to rip my CDs. It is free and gives you the options to rip in paranoia mode which will not stop trying until it has a perfect copy of your disk. It also gives you options to rip to different bitrates at the same time so you can go Lossless for your 120G iPod and 128 for your Shuffle at the same time. It is not as convenient as ripping straight into iTunes but to me it was worth the effort. And if you're an audio geek - it sure is fun to go through all your CDs again!!

Cheers

umbilical
Oct 22, 2008, 10:49 PM
I've been having trouble hearing any difference between lossless and AAC, even at 128. Is there any chance you could post some snippets of tracks so that I know what to listen for? Sorry to have to ask, but this has been bugging me for a long time, and it would serve as a great example for others. I thought that I had good hearing, and my sound setup is fairly good too, so I really wonder what it is that I'm missing.

I agree, me too!

System 6
Oct 23, 2008, 08:26 PM
First let me say that I can tell the difference between 128 and Apple Lossless - even in my car. There is an airiness with lossless files that seems to be squashed when using any compression.
I should have said that I can hear a difference with MP3. At 128, an MP3 can contain obvious distortions, and at 160 an MP3 does lose something subtle - the airiness that you mention. It's only at 192 that I can't distinguish an MP3 from the original. AAC however, seems fine even at 128 (and ripped with iTunes), although I use 160 just to be "safe". I'm trying to find some specific listening examples so that I can hear for myself the differences that others have mentioned. :confused:

umbilical
Oct 23, 2008, 08:34 PM
a cool new:

Apple begins testing Mac OS X 10.5.6 Update

Earlier this week, Apple began widespread testing of QuickTime 7.6, which should improve handling of 5.1 channel audio, in addition to delivering improvements to AAC, MPEG-1, and Apple Lossless tracks.

Safir
Nov 21, 2008, 08:37 PM
If you also consider space, aac is really good. It compress very good. The quality of aac 128 kbps is better than mp3 192 kbps. So converting to aac 320 kbps gives you great result.