Any AAC updates/improvements in the works?

Discussion in 'iPod' started by music251, Sep 25, 2005.

  1. music251 macrumors newbie

    Sep 22, 2005

    An avid iPod/apple user here.
    It's only a few months since I converted my entire cd collection to AAC@224. However with headphone upgrades etc., I now realize that AAC@224 doesn't any longer do the trick for me. Still doing everything all over again in AAC@320 would be a gigantic effort, so I was just wondering if anyone knows if there is a new version (improvement of the) of the AAC-format planned in relatively near future? I read something about AAC+, but didn't get a clear idea about what it stood for. It would be kind of a drag to do the whole thing again in 320kbit, only to realize a couple of months later that some new and better format was available.
    Of course, I could encode everything in the Apple lossless format, but would a wave-lossless-aac route give less soundquality in the AAC-file (because of the extra link in the convertion chain)?
    Any tips or help would be greatly appreciated.
    Thanks! :)
  2. steve_hill4 macrumors 68000


    May 15, 2005
    NG9, England
    The only other one I know of is High Efficiency AAC, (HE-AAC), but that is really only for lower bitrates of 64kbps and lower. I really think they are scraping the bottom of the barrel with AAC to be honest, you can't compress something much more than that without expecting loss of quality. If you are encoding at 320kbps though, your battery life on your iPod is obviously not that long, so why not encode in AIFF or WAV instead?

    As for AAC+, if it is a seperate issue to AAC or HE-AAC, then first of all apple will have to support it in iTunes and for their iPod before people will start using it rather than AAC.
  3. .:*Robot Boy*:. macrumors 6502

    Jan 21, 2005
    New Zealand
    Check out Coding Technologies for more information on HE-AAC/AACplus (they're essentially the same thing).

    My guess is that Apple hasn't implemented HE-ACC because they would have to license Coding Technologies' Spectral Band Replication and Parametric Stereo technology. I would imagine that Apple are in a position where they could create their own super-efficient audio codec and make that exclusive to iPod/iTunes users in the same way as their Apple Lossless codec.
  4. NicP macrumors 6502

    Jun 14, 2005
    the extra link in the conversion chain wont give any less sound quality, if it did then apple lossless wouldnt be truly lossless would it :)
  5. music251 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 22, 2005
    Thanks for the info.
    Yeah, I guess it would be overoptimistic to expect some major improvement in soundquality and compression with AAC at 224-320kb rates... The AAC standard is quite good I have to say, even at 224kb the sound is very nice. I'm also pondering the idea to save all my cds in apple lossless format, this way I'll have a perfect digital copy the day when my cds stop working properly. Anyway, again thanks for the help! :)
  6. Yvan256 macrumors 603


    Jul 5, 2004
    It's also practical because if Apple supports a new/better format with iTunes someday, you'll be ready to convert from your lossless library to the new format.

    I still wish Apple would allow format/bitrate settings for all iPods (lossless on my Mac, 128kbps on my 10GB iPod, 64kbps on my iPod nano, etc).
  7. music251 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 22, 2005
    I agree about the bitrate convertion, but the worst thing with the iPod today, is that it actually lacks a userdefinable iTunes equalizer. This is very impractical if you use a canalphone like UM2 which needs to be EQ'ed to sound it's best. I really hope this is something apple will fix in the next line of iPods.

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