Higher BitRate AACs?

Discussion in 'Mac Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Oct 10, 2003.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001
    MacDailyNews adds an unconfirmed rumor to next week's iTunes-release.

    According to the news site, Apple may start offering higher bit rate encoded AACs on their iTunes Music Store -- with claims up to 190kbps. The iTunes Music store presently offers 128kbps songs.
  2. oliverlubin macrumors regular

    Jul 18, 2002
  3. soosy macrumors regular

    May 6, 2002
  4. Wonder Boy macrumors 6502a

    Wonder Boy

    Feb 18, 2003
    South Windsor, CT
    ive just about enough of any AAC file, no matter the bit rate. i bought a staind cd on the itms and it doesnt play in any of my cd players. sorry to get off topic right off the bat, but damn, i thought these things were compatible.

    problem fixed. i it was the media.
  5. 1macker1 macrumors 65816


    Oct 9, 2003
    A Higher Level
    So is it the format or the bit rate which provides the better quality. I'm confused. Just for an example, if i have an ACC file at 96bps and a WMA file at 128, is the WMA going to sound better. Or is it like everything else in the computer world...a combination of the two.
  6. 1macker1 macrumors 65816


    Oct 9, 2003
    A Higher Level
    Staind's new cd is a good buy. I've never had any problems with my songs playing in any CD players, they just dont play on pcees
  7. arn macrumors god


    Staff Member

    Apr 9, 2001
    It's a combination of the two.

    But a 190kbps AAC should be "better" than a 96kps AAC.

  8. ennerseed macrumors regular

    Jan 3, 2002
    AAC will have nothing to do with it playing in your cd players... Did you burn it as a music cd, or a data cd?
  9. rogueimage macrumors member

    Apr 29, 2003
    Boulder, Colorado
    How did you burn it? Naturally, the CD deck won't play a protected AAC file bought from the iTMS. If you burn it in audio CD format, it should read it though, unless your CD deck or CD-Rs are of poor quality. (No offense intended. I've had experience with both, and it's the manufacturer's fault.)
  10. dstorey macrumors 6502a

    Dec 14, 2002
    Itys a combo of them both. AAC for example is better than mp3 at the same bit rate...128 aac sounds better than 128 mp3. I'm not 100% sure of the actual data but maybe the lower one down (96 or whatever?) in aac will sound as goodish as 128 mp3. As for if 96 aac is better than wma, well i'm not sure but I imagine not as I think wma is better than mp3 (again not 100% sure and not an audio geek) but again at the same bit rate, AAC is better than wma. Of course if aac was at a really low bit rate and wma at 128 then wma would win hands down. Just look at it as you can save disk space with a better codec at the same quality, or you can get bettr quality at the same file size.
  11. BlueDjinn macrumors member

    Jun 19, 2002
    Berkley, MI
    Excellent idea!

    For one thing, it's relatively painless to do from a technical perspective--all that's required is re-ripping the same songs; no new artwork/ID3 tags/etc. needed. Sure, they'll need 50% more bandwidth/server capacity, but I gotta figure that they're already beefing this up 5-10-fold for the Windows version already anyway (not to mention doubling the number of tracks available).

    In addition, depending on how they do it, they might even nab some extra cash from everyone who's already bought tracks--the more serious music lovers would probably be willing to pay, say, another $0.25 to "upgrade" each of their tracks from 128 to 192. I could see something like $0.99 for 192, $0.79 for 128, and $0.25 to upgrade existing 128 tracks to 192...

    ...or would this make the whole thing too confusing for new users? Maybe just change every track to 192 and keep it at $0.99 would be better.

    The *only* downside I can think of is that it would mess up their iPod advertising a little bit--the "10,000 songs in your pocket" slogan is based on 128 tracks; at 192 it'd be "6,500 songs in your pocket" which is still great but not *as* great...
  12. dongmin macrumors 68000


    Jan 3, 2002
    Re: Higher BitRate AACs?

    shouldn't that be 192 kbps?
  13. MasterMac macrumors regular

    Jun 17, 2003
    Other way around
  14. canadianmacguy macrumors member


    Apr 8, 2002
    This would be great, but only if all the songs I've bought I can re-download again in the higher bit rate.

    If I can't, this decision would suck...
  15. dho macrumors 6502

    Sep 7, 2003
    the difference between 128 and 190 is surprising. Sounds like it would be great
  16. evil macrumors 6502

    May 2, 2003
    chicago ex-toronto
    i disagree. i have my whole cd collection on my ipod at 128 aac. i use my ipod as my home stereo through my reciever.

    i play my stuff pretty loud and it sounds damn good.

    i honestly dont see the need to use 192 aac unless for professionals or something...but professionals would use an even higher bit rate.
  17. daddy-mojo macrumors member

    Jan 31, 2003

    make sure your itunes prefs are set to burn as an audio cd.
    select your itms staind tracks.
    hit the burn button.
    it will encode it to be a normal audio cd.
    you can't just burn the files as a data disc with audio files on it and expect it to play in a cd player. and check the media as well. simple.
    good luck.
  18. Daveman Deluxe macrumors 68000

    Daveman Deluxe

    Jun 17, 2003
    Corvallis, Oregon
    I tried out 128 kbps AAC files and hated it. I wasn't pleased with the quality until my AAC files were 256 kbps. That's fine because I wasn't at all pleased with my 256 kbps MP3 files, so I'm happier now.

    This move by Apple is a step in the right direction but it's not enough to convince me to buy music at the iTMS.
  19. iamtiger macrumors newbie

    Oct 10, 2003
    192kbps AAC should sound better than 128 AAC by virtue of retaining more digital information from the original uncompressed audio cd. Personally, i prefer quality over quantity anyday, so i dont care if it holds less songs in my pod as long as im getting a nice digital reproduction and the ability to still hold thousands of tracks. Moreover, i encode the majority of my cd's to 256 kbps AAC because i honestly can't tell the difference between the uncompressed audio cd and 256. However, i think 128 mp3 sounds equivalent to FM radio quality. On the other hand, 128 AAC sounds slightly better than FM quality, quite similar to uncompressed cd audio, but not the real deal. As a result, Apple is rumored to offer "quality" encodiing at 192 AAC probably to satisfy us audiophiles more so than the average joe who doesnt care and can't notice the difference anyway.
  20. jaxbrokenheart macrumors newbie

    Jan 24, 2003
    St. Lousy, Misery
    i hope this is true. i encode all my cd's as 192 Kb/s AAC's, so if they were all the same, that'd be great.
  21. Lord Bodak macrumors 6502

    Jun 24, 2003
    Chesapeake, VA USA
    Wonder what this would mean for already purchased music...
  22. rog macrumors 6502

    Apr 9, 2003
    Kalapana, HI
    Hmm, the AACs from iTMS are supposedly from original source material so they sound better. Also, there are different AAC encoders so not all 128 bit AACs will sound the same even from the same source. Everything I've gotten form iTMS has sounded great to me. My ears and an iPod, often used on public transportation or noisy areas, are not good enough to really detect dramatic differences in sound anyway unless it's otherwise silent and I'm concentrating on the music. So I kind of think 192 would make me less likely to buy. Takes longer to download, takes up more space on my iPod. I'm barely able to fit all my music on my 20 GB iPod and it's mostly at 128 bit AAC. If it was all 192 it wouldn't fit. iTMS 128 bit AACs already probably sound as good as or better than a home ripped 192 AAC from a CD source using the default built in encoder. (apparently if you're a glutton for punishment, you can rip using a higher quality setting via Quicktime). Given that broadband is still not a household standard, a 50% longer download time per song doesn't make a whole lot of sense. They ought to stick with 128 and focus their efforts on expanding selection. 90% of what I look for on iTMS just isn't there.
  23. evil macrumors 6502

    May 2, 2003
    chicago ex-toronto
    that was an excellent point. both on the the broadband issue and expanding the selection.
    i totally agree with you on that. i havbe not bought anythiugn on itms because they have nothing that i want. if there was a better selection i would maybe buy things.
  24. jywv8 macrumors 6502

    Jan 11, 2003
    I wholly agree. I purchased a song from ITMS, encoded at 128 kbps, and I think the sound quality is lacking. I was suprised they used such a low bitrate.

    I think they should sell 256 kbps files. Or, if people are worried about filesizes, they should at least give you the option of choosing a higher bitrate if you want it.
  25. MorganX macrumors 6502a


    Jan 20, 2003
    This is good to see. With 384k 5.1 WMA at bumusic and 160k WMA at musicmatch, Apple is not waiting around to respond.

    Seeing them compete in such a timely manner builds my confidence that Apple won't be giving up and is in this for the long haul. That alone makes me feel better continuing to buy AACs.

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