FLAC to ALAC to iTunes

Giuanniello

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Oct 21, 2012
447
131
Capri - Italy
I know, iTunes su*ks but still the best player at organizing the audio library, the options I tested to play FLAC are even worse but the thought is to convert to ALAC as to use iTunes, wondering which converter to use, if you have any advise it will be very welcome as well as your thoughts about FLAC vs ALAC quality wise.

thank you
 

casperes1996

macrumors 603
Jan 26, 2014
5,072
2,952
Horsens, Denmark
I know, iTunes su*ks but still the best player at organizing the audio library, the options I tested to play FLAC are even worse but the thought is to convert to ALAC as to use iTunes, wondering which converter to use, if you have any advise it will be very welcome as well as your thoughts about FLAC vs ALAC quality wise.

With respect to quality, both or lossless formats, and if they're handled properly by the software that uses them, in this case the converter would be the primary concern, they should sound identically. The data even should be identical, it's only the container format that would differ. Unless lossless compression was enabled for either, in which case it'd still be the same quality, but the data would look a bit different and required a bit more CPU power to playback (nothing for any modern hardware).

For conversion I've used a tool called XLD in the past for this, and it worked well enough for me
 
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Giuanniello

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Oct 21, 2012
447
131
Capri - Italy
Thank you so much!!!

Will then convert to all to ALAC as to use iTunes and if it is not satisfying I can still use some other player

Grazie

Giovanni
 

hawkeye_a

macrumors 68000
Jun 27, 2016
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4,225
I've been wondering about the differences between ALAC and FLAC. Are there any, apart from being different containers?
Using XLD to convert between FLAC and ALAC, will that cause any change to the underlying audio data?

Cheers
 

casperes1996

macrumors 603
Jan 26, 2014
5,072
2,952
Horsens, Denmark
I've been wondering about the differences between ALAC and FLAC. Are there any, apart from being different containers?
Using XLD to convert between FLAC and ALAC, will that cause any change to the underlying audio data?

Cheers

They are both lossless. The only real difference is that one is big endian and the other is little endian. In other words, reversed. One is essentially read from left to right, and other right to left.
 
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D.T.

macrumors G4
Sep 15, 2011
10,728
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Vilano Beach, FL
Since you have some FLAC sources (i.e., you're not all in on Apple specific media), if you don't need Apple services (ex: iTunes Match) - have you explored any of the more recent MacOS player/library options? There's quite a few of them now, with native FLAC support, and things like plugins to really customize your experience.

The two that come to mind are Clementine and Nightingale (outside of VLC which is a terrific player, just not a great media organizer). I don't recall if it's one of these or yet another one, but at least one even has a file system monitor, so if you add a song to iTunes, it automatically imports it.
 

Giuanniello

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Oct 21, 2012
447
131
Capri - Italy
I am giving a try at AudioNirvana, it's ok, I am not sure I'd buy it, way weird the way it handles the music, with iTunes the advantage would only be to easier create playlists whilst on this you gotta go through the hassle of doing it manually, besides that the output quality is supposedly much better with tons of settings whilst iTunes is not, I seem to understand, oriented to audiophiles.

There is VOX which was a nice alternative until they decided that to be able to use the equalizer you have to create an account and I am sick of having accounts even with the grocery store...

Never heard of Clementine but, so far, it seems like an abandon project dating back to 2016, gonna give Nightingale a try but seems very much like the others as far as the ability to create and handle playlists

Grazie
 

majurg

macrumors member
Sep 11, 2014
36
36
I know, iTunes su*ks but still the best player at organizing the audio library, the options I tested to play FLAC are even worse but the thought is to convert to ALAC as to use iTunes, wondering which converter to use, if you have any advise it will be very welcome as well as your thoughts about FLAC vs ALAC quality wise.

thank you
XLD will do the trick. http://tmkk.undo.jp/xld/index_e.html

Ive used it to transcode FLAC <=> ALAC and back again, works like a charm. ffmpeg can probably do the same if CLI tools are more your thing.
 

J.Gallardo

macrumors 6502
Apr 4, 2017
302
75
Spain
I believe VLC can also convert files...
But at sound files, XLD is the champion: it reads & converts ALL kind of sound formats I know, even HI-RES files that VLC doesn't understand.
(Plus: it's free)
 
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