Is Apple Lossless format worth it?

Discussion in 'iPod touch' started by azure247, Sep 27, 2008.

  1. azure247 macrumors 6502

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    Sep 9, 2008
    #1
    When I had my classic 80gb my songs were all converted to Apple Lossless but I didn't notice any improvement in sound quality. The only thing noticeable was the wallop it took on my capacity. Those files can be huge. I use a ipod touch 32 now and is it really worth it to have my songs in apple lossless? Is the sound really much better?
     
  2. Nermal Moderator

    Nermal

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    #2
    The difference isn't noticeable for the vast majority of songs. I recommend 256 kb/s AAC.
     
  3. Nuks macrumors 6502a

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    Feb 25, 2006
    #3
    Most ears can't hear the difference after 192kps, especially using an mp3 player. I'd recommend 192 as a minimum, and 256 if you really want.
     
  4. Muncher macrumors 65816

    Muncher

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  5. richpjr macrumors 68030

    richpjr

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    #5
    For a portable device, 192k VBR is fine. I use it for my iPods. I also rip everything in lossless format for listening at home on my stereo, but frankly, it's overkill for all but the most critical of listeners.
     
  6. sahni130 macrumors 6502

    sahni130

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    Atlanta, Georgia, United States
    #6
    which is better aac at 192kbps or mp3 at 192 kbps? or is apple lossless better? all of my music is encoded at mp3, how do i convert to apple lossless or aac?
     
  7. ChrisA macrumors G4

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    #7
    If you are listening using good equipment and that excludes the Apple earbuds and all powered desktop speakers then you may be able to hear the different between AAC and Lossless.

    I have a pair of studio quality headphones and I can tell the difference same with the stereo system in the living room. It's "moderate quality" but good enough to let the difference between loss less and lossy formats be heard. Given good enough stereo equipment you can hear the difference.

    Some people don't care. My son says he doesn't. My wife thought the Apple brand earbuds were good until I bought here a much better set and then she could hear the difference in a second.


    Other questions: Can you hear the recording defects in many CDs, Can you hear how a vocalist is miked and the room acoustics used inside the recording studio. If not then maybe yu don't need lossless formats.

    What you can do is keep the lossless format on the computer and then convert these to AAC and store that format on the iPod. If you use the iPod inthe gym or other noisy environment sound quality hardly matters. I just finished ripping about 600 CDs to iTunes and now that they are in lossless I can convert them to anything I want and I'll never have to re-rip them.
     
  8. California King macrumors 65816

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    Sep 20, 2007
    #8
    I would just stick with MP3. AAC isn't very noticeable at all. But if you want to do it, go to the "general" tab in preferences and click on "import settings" and choose AAC, then select the songs you want in your library, right click and click convert to AAC.
     
  9. Nermal Moderator

    Nermal

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    #9
    Don't convert MP3 to AAC. You should only produce AAC from CDs or lossless files.
     
  10. Eric5h5 macrumors 68020

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    Dec 9, 2004
    #10
    You don't--it's already compressed. The only way to get lossless or aac is to re-encode from the original source. (Technically, you can convert, but it's it's like re-saving a jpg: very bad idea.)

    --Eric
     
  11. Phish311 macrumors regular

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    Oct 29, 2007
    #11
    why not use 320kbps as opposed to 256? is it just a bit better quality the higher you go?
     
  12. Muncher macrumors 65816

    Muncher

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    #12
    320 Kbps is an inefficient use of space; 256 is indistinguishable from lossless for many people, especially as VBR.
     
  13. Phish311 macrumors regular

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    Oct 29, 2007
    #13
    how is 320 an inefficient use of space? assuming you are talking to someone who has a good ear for music, isn't there going to a be a difference between 256 and 320?
     
  14. shigzeo macrumors 6502a

    shigzeo

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    Japan
    #14
    320 has been proven to provide little if anything in multiple listening tests at hydrogenaudio.org over 256k at vbr. in fact, it only really makes effect if the listener knows she is listening to the 320 file: placebo.

    versus lossless is up to a certain person, sample and player. some players have improper decoders and cannot do flac, alac, or even wav properly as they are optimised for mp3 or mp4.

    for me, 256vbr aac is my favourite but mp3 is just fine as well. 320 i try to stay away from for the extra space as well as its really infant-size of improvement even if it exists.

    but going from mp3 to lossless is pointless: you get only bigger files while not getting better quality. once shrunk to aac, mp3, mp2, ogg, mpc etc, you lose all the extra informatioin. making lossless from lossy is like filling a balloon with hot air: there is really nothing inside.
     
  15. Phish311 macrumors regular

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    Oct 29, 2007
    #15
    i only download flacs and i usually convert them to 320 aac. if this is my best option, unless i do apple loseless, ill just stick with it. im not worried about space as i have over 400 gb of music and 2 external HD (500gb and 1tb). Quality is more important to me than anything else
     
  16. Naro macrumors newbie

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    Jun 29, 2008
    #16
    Convert it, but keep a 192 kbps copy to put on portable devices. If you don't have a decent pair of headphones/good speaker system there's not really any point though.
     
  17. Sandpiper macrumors newbie

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    Dec 18, 2007
    Location:
    Belgium
    #17
    I download music in flac or MP3 320 and convert them to AAC 256 VBR. Do i loose a signifcant amount of quality converting from MP3 to AAC compared to from flac to AAC?
     
  18. duncyboy macrumors 6502a

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    Feb 5, 2008
    #18
    Another vote for 192k mp3 from me as a personal preference. Out of curiosity when my new iPod Touch came I encoded some favourite songs from CD to lossless and a couple of other codecs to see if I could appreciate a difference and I couldn't really. I could spot a SMALL difference on certain tracks but not enough to justify the sheer file size of the lossless.

    And just for the record I use:

    These at work and when I'm out and about: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sennheiser-...1?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1222887407&sr=8-1

    These at home with both my iPod and iMac: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sennheiser-...8?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1222887407&sr=8-8

    And these are my iMac speakers: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Acoustic-En...1?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1222887428&sr=8-1
     
  19. richpjr macrumors 68030

    richpjr

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    #19
    You will lose quality converting a compressed format to another compressed format.
     
  20. phoobo macrumors regular

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    Sep 13, 2008
    #20
    yes - bad idea

    Yes you do. Lossy-to-lossy converting is one area where you will definitely cause an audible degradation in sound quality - and not just for so-called stereophiles who claim to hear the difference between cables (they can't).

    It's a little like xeroxing a xerox (to put it graphically).

    Flac/ape and other lossless formats are the only things that should be converted to lossy.

    Storage is cheap: keep your main library in original lossless formats (preferably APE or FLAC - though itunes won't play them, which is a real shame, they are still otherwise universal) on your desktop, and convert from there. It's a "future-proof" system too, and won't go out of date.

    You can convert from lossless to lossless any time, without any degradation - though there's usually no need to.
     

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