I never knew this -- AAC to AIFF

Discussion in 'General Mac Discussion' started by SBG88, Oct 18, 2003.

  1. SBG88 macrumors regular


    Feb 19, 2003
    I must admit total ignorance to all these music files and I'm embarrassed to ask this question.
    My daughter and I just downloaded a Sheryl Crow album. She wanted a cd so I copied the aac files to a cd for her. I thought I was making a mp4 or m4a cd, but, it copied as aiff files :confused: a regular cd! I don't know... just having a hard time understanding how this is accomplished. (an aac protected file to aiff).
  2. ColoJohnBoy macrumors 65816


    Mar 10, 2003
    Denver, Colorado
    In iTunes, you probably selected "Burn as Audio CD". No matter what format it's in, iTunes will convert your music to AIFF for the CD. You should burn the songs like a Data CD - Just drag and drop the files to the CD icon, and drag to the trash.
  3. Doctor Q Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Sep 19, 2002
    Los Angeles
    DRM (digital rights management) information is removed when you burn a CD. That does not mean that your legal rights have changed. It's just how iTunes operates and this is one of the actions it permits. If you check your iTunes Preferences, you'll see that your burning options let you choose your CD format: Audio CD, MP3 CD, or Data CD (or DVD). Audio CDs use AIFF. Data CDs are usually used for saving or transporting a playlist worth of songs.

    You can rip the songs from the CD you write back to iTunes, still without the DRM. And again, this does not change your rights, i.e., the music is no longer in a protected format but you are still not free to give it away.
  4. rainman::|:| macrumors 603


    Feb 2, 2002
    AIFF is the format that CD players read. like your car or bookshelf system, as the format was invented decades ago. It's why there's a 72 minute limit on discs. If you burn the AAC (or MP3) files to a disc as AAC format, you can only use the disc on other computers, or players that support it. So iTunes and any other sound burning program have to convert to AIFF during burning. It should be noted that AIFF is a lossless codec so you're not losing quality (from the original file), tho it is much larger in terms of data space-- theoretically you could store your music library in this format, it would just take up 30-50 times the space.

    So to get the files off in AAC or MP3 format, she would have to rip them. but the song would then have gone through two lossy codecs, resulting in signifigant quality degradation.

    edit: i may be mistaken, double-ripping may only cause further degradation if different codecs are used.

  5. SBG88 thread starter macrumors regular


    Feb 19, 2003
    Cool. She wanted a regular cd and I told her she would only be able to play it on computers. What a dummy I am. The music store looks a great deal better to me now.
  6. benixau macrumors 65816


    Oct 9, 2002
    Sydney, Australia
  7. Phil Of Mac macrumors 68020

    Phil Of Mac

    Dec 6, 2002
    Washington State University
    Who invented AIFF anyway? Wasn't it Apple? Then why is it standard?

  8. WinterMute Moderator emeritus


    Jan 19, 2003
    London, England
    Audio Interchange File Format

    aiff files were originally used by Phillips when they created the first CD player, it is the codec that the Red Book standard is based on i/e. the standard that all audio CDs should conform to.

    aiff was created by a company called Electronic Arts, and was designed to send PCM code between computers.

    Most CD's that are user created are Orange Book standard, which will play in computers and most CD players, although some old machines won't play them.

    To burn a Red Book CD you'll need an app like Roxio's Jam.

Share This Page