Decompressing iTunes Music

Riverrun

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jul 11, 2007
145
1
~
I have a lot of music that I downloaded from iTunes. It remains in its original format. Lately, I’ve been wondering if it’s worth converting these iTunes albums to Apple Lossless or aiff. Would decompressing these recordings be of any benefit, do you think? Or is it a fallacy to think that I can add quality by choosing a lossless format? Would I gain by doing so?
It's a fairly eclectic collection but top heavy with Jazz.
 

bwhli

macrumors 6502a
Jan 9, 2012
557
210
Boston, MA
I have a lot of music that I downloaded from iTunes. It remains in its original format. Lately, I’ve been wondering if it’s worth converting these iTunes albums to Apple Lossless or aiff. Would decompressing these recordings be of any benefit, do you think? Or is it a fallacy to think that I can add quality by choosing a lossless format? Would I gain by doing so?

It's a fairly eclectic collection but top heavy with Jazz.

Converting AAC files from the iTunes Store to Apple Lossless will not improve sound quality. It will only make the file size bigger.
 

ChrisA

macrumors G4
Jan 5, 2006
11,641
406
Redondo Beach, California
I have a lot of music that I downloaded from iTunes. It remains in its original format. Lately, I’ve been wondering if it’s worth converting these iTunes albums to Apple Lossless or aiff. Would decompressing these recordings be of any benefit, do you think? Or is it a fallacy to think that I can add quality by choosing a lossless format? Would I gain by doing so?
It's a fairly eclectic collection but top heavy with Jazz.
It would be completely pointless. There would be zero gain in quality

Look at it this way. You already decompress with track when you play it. iTunes converts it to the uncompressed form in real time then sends it to the output. So you don't need to decompress it in advance.

That said you could replace your music with lossless format files. Buy the CDs and rip them yourself to Apple Lossless. Or at least buy the CD rather then the download files for the NEXT item you buy. I very rarely buy iTunes downloads. Less then 1% of my music is from Apple..

You need a fairly good audio system to hear the difference and the difference is not constant over time. A compressed song might sound identical for many seconds and then one drum hit is distorted on the AAC or MP3 version. I find the defects are in the transients. Actually AAC is very good with low bit rate mP3 it is more obvious.
 

Irishman

macrumors 68030
Nov 2, 2006
2,760
581
I have a lot of music that I downloaded from iTunes. It remains in its original format. Lately, I’ve been wondering if it’s worth converting these iTunes albums to Apple Lossless or aiff. Would decompressing these recordings be of any benefit, do you think? Or is it a fallacy to think that I can add quality by choosing a lossless format? Would I gain by doing so?
It's a fairly eclectic collection but top heavy with Jazz.
You would lose your time and effort, while gaining nothing. Your suspicion was correct that you cannot add quality to a music file that was not there already.