BEWARE: Lossless audio uploaded at 256kbps

Julien

macrumors G4
Original poster
Jun 30, 2007
11,270
4,222
Atlanta
Just a slight caveat. If you have lossless audio that is NOT matched and uploaded it is down converted to 256kbps. I kind of suspected this but most rumors were it would upload what you have a s what it is. It looks like once you pass 256kbps it down converts to 256kbps.

Not sure how it handles 320kbps MP3's (or even worse 128kbps MP3's covered to AAC). If it takes a 320kbps MP3 and converts to 256kbps AAC this would be very detrimental to your audio. Converting from one lossy codec to anther lossy codec gives you the worst of both.

I'm only referring to uploads and NOT matched.
 

soco

macrumors 68030
Dec 14, 2009
2,837
116
Yardley, PA
I didn't know this was something that needed the be wary of. Wasn't this stated on stage and online?
supersecretsecrets
 

ctakim

macrumors 6502
Oct 12, 2006
310
0
It was announced, and I guess the thinking is that lossless streaming down to devices was going to be too much of a bandwidth hog. For me this is not a big issue, even though I am slowly converting my library to Apple Lossless.
 

PNutts

macrumors 601
Jul 24, 2008
4,839
347
Pacific Northwest, US
OP: Not being a jerk, do you have a link? I'm interested in this topic.

From Apple http://support.apple.com/kb/TS4054, it sounds like they are uploaded as is but I may be reading more into it than there is.


From the link (emphasis mine):
Additional Information
About file formats and iTunes Match

  • Songs encoded as MP3 or AAC that have been matched to the iTunes Store will be made available for download as 256 kbps as AAC from iCloud.
  • Songs encoded as MP3 or AAC that cannot be matched to the iTunes Store will be uploaded as is. These songs will be made available for download in the same format it was uploaded in.
  • Songs encoded as MP3 or AAC with a bitrate of 96 kbps or less will not be matched or uploaded to iCloud.
  • Songs encoded as ALAC, WAV, or AIFF, will be transcoded in iTunes to 256 kbps AAC when uploaded to iCloud.
  • Song files over 200 MB will not be uploaded to iCloud.
 

philipk

macrumors 6502
Jun 11, 2008
438
190
do you have a link? I'm interested in this topic.
I am not the original poster but the link you gave is the answer to his main caveat about lossless audio. I highlighted the important sentence bellow.

  • Songs encoded as MP3 or AAC that have been matched to the iTunes Store will be made available for download as 256 kbps as AAC from iCloud.
  • Songs encoded as MP3 or AAC that cannot be matched to the iTunes Store will be uploaded as is. These songs will be made available for download in the same format it was uploaded in.
  • Songs encoded as MP3 or AAC with a bitrate of 96 kbps or less will not be matched or uploaded to iCloud.
  • Songs encoded as ALAC, WAV, or AIFF, will be transcoded in iTunes to 256 kbps AAC when uploaded to iCloud.
  • Song files over 200 MB will not be uploaded to iCloud.


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Not sure how it handles 320kbps MP3's (or even worse 128kbps MP3's covered to AAC). If it takes a 320kbps MP3 and converts to 256kbps AAC this would be very detrimental to your audio. Converting from one lossy codec to anther lossy codec gives you the worst of both.

I'm only referring to uploads and NOT matched.
320kbps will upload intact if they are not matched. They only covert lossless audio.
 

srf4real

macrumors 68040
Jul 25, 2006
3,001
26
paradise beach FL
This is why I have an old iTunes library tucked away somewhere that the iCloud, Match, etc.. will never, ever see. All the time I've spent converting disc media to digital is not going down the drain just so I can listen to it on my iToys. I have completely converted my active iTunes library to either 256k or 320k, and the transition to Match has completed. Now i need a 64GB iPhone 5 dangit! I was getting by on a 16GB iPhone 4, and my iPod G2 is only 8!:eek:

OP, it's good of you to warn those unawares or making faulty assumptions. The cloud is not a reliable nor precise backup for any user data, period in my opinion. It is merely a convenience. But woe to the day that Apple's servers fail or fail to keep up with demand...;):cool:
 

WisdomWolf

macrumors regular
Apr 15, 2010
161
0
This is why I have an old iTunes library tucked away somewhere that the iCloud, Match, etc.. will never, ever see. All the time I've spent converting disc media to digital is not going down the drain just so I can listen to it on my iToys. I have completely converted my active iTunes library to either 256k or 320k, and the transition to Match has completed. Now i need a 64GB iPhone 5 dangit! I was getting by on a 16GB iPhone 4, and my iPod G2 is only 8!:eek:

OP, it's good of you to warn those unawares or making faulty assumptions. The cloud is not a reliable nor precise backup for any user data, period in my opinion. It is merely a convenience. But woe to the day that Apple's servers fail or fail to keep up with demand...;):cool:
This is actually a feature, if you ask me. Now I can actually keep my lossless songs in my library and still have them stored on my ipad without having to convert EVERY song I sync. While on my computer where it matters, I still have access to the lossless version and don't need two different versions with different playcounts. Seems win-win to me.
 

srf4real

macrumors 68040
Jul 25, 2006
3,001
26
paradise beach FL
This is actually a feature, if you ask me. Now I can actually keep my lossless songs in my library and still have them stored on my ipad without having to convert EVERY song I sync. While on my computer where it matters, I still have access to the lossless version and don't need two different versions with different playcounts. Seems win-win to me.
I agree with you. Had this service been around for the last ten years I would not have already had a lossless version, a high bit-rate mp3 version, and a low bit-rate mp3 version of any songs in my library that needed to go mobile. You should have seen me deleting versions like a wild banshee the last few days as Match insisted on backing up every version of each one.. I have never used smart playlist so much in one week!:rolleyes::p

Another feature I will enjoy, as I add to my music collection.. no more ripping to mp3's out of iTunes store songs because they can only be burned to cd as lossless.. that was the biggest pain having to turn everything from the store into another version to burn mp3. Ridiculous....
 
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