constant bit rate or vbr for mp3?

Discussion in 'Digital Audio' started by dogbone, Jan 31, 2007.

  1. dogbone macrumors 68020

    dogbone

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    #1
    I'm downloading some mp3 at 192kbps and I've been given the choice of vbr or constant bit rate. What should I choose. If one is better than the other why is there a choice? Or does it depend on the type of music.
     
  2. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #2
    i like constant. my friend likes VBR. then again, my mortgage is a 30 year fixed. he took out a personal loan on top of his mortgage.

    so what kind of mortgage do you have?
     
  3. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #3
    Are there any situations in which VBR is not better? I think the only time VBR would be worse than constant bit rate is if there was a very consistent level of complexity per unit time interval in the audio, so that the data space spent defining the change in bit rate is essentially a waste. But otherwise, it lets you make the most of a bit rate by doing additional sampling in areas where it can be beneficial.
     
  4. dogbone thread starter macrumors 68020

    dogbone

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  5. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

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    #5
    I would not suggest VBR at all, having used it for more than a year and finding songs that ended abruptly on my 4g iPod.

    Since re-ripping as constant rate, I've not had one problem.
     
  6. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #6
    i've had that happen, too. just like the rate on an ARM can suddenly increase.
     
  7. dogbone thread starter macrumors 68020

    dogbone

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    #7
    forget post #4, constant bit rate it is then. :)
     
  8. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #8
    Interesting... I've never had that happen with VBR. But then I use AAC and not MP3. Weird. :eek:
     
  9. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #9
    Odd. All of my songs are VBR and I've never had a playback problem.


    Lethal
     
  10. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

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    #10
    Supposedly, newer iPods aren't affected but I'd never had a problem before I tried VBR and haven't had a problem since I dumped all of it.
     
  11. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #11
    i've got VBRs that quit playing in itunes. they *are* somewhat old mp3s, made from an earlier version of itunes. it was one friend who kept sending them, and he stopped once i requested it. so maybe it's fixed now, but i figure "why tempt it?"
     
  12. samjane macrumors newbie

    samjane

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  13. scottlinux macrumors 6502a

    scottlinux

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    #13
    The only argument for CBR mp3s is for players that cannot play VBR content. Or if you have space/size considerations where you want all of your music to be the same size per minute of music.

    The latest Lame encoder (3.97) had lots of improvements and changes specifically for VBR encoding.

    $ lame yourfile.wav yourfile.mp3 -V2 --vbr-new -q0

    These are my favorite Lame settings for 3.97. This analyzes the file and looks at the complexity of the frequency range. Then finds an appropriate VBR, depending on the complexity. Try some dry tests yourself and see if you like VBR or CBR.
     

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