iTunes on Hifi.

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by paulg1979, Jan 15, 2007.

  1. paulg1979 macrumors member

    Oct 29, 2006
    Hi all,

    I'm currently running my iMac with an Airport Express into Naim Audio amplifiers. It sound pretty impressive but wondered what the best format and bit rates are to burn cd's onto your library to get the best quality sound. Also is it worth buying an external DAC to improve quality too?
  2. combatcolin macrumors 68020


    Oct 24, 2004
    Northants, UK
    160Kbps AAC is quite tasty, although the more of a Hi-Fi buff you become the more you fiddle and then less you enjoy.
  3. NintendoFan macrumors regular

    Apr 14, 2006
    I think 192Kbps is a good middle road, most can't tell the difference. But it's all rather subjective. Encode a song you're familiar with at different bit rates and see which sounds best.
  4. gnasher729 macrumors P6


    Nov 25, 2005
    You'll have to try it.

    Apple Lossless = CD quality, but only about 50 percent compression. Still, a 300 GB external harddisk will hold 800 to 1000 CDs. Not recommended for iPods because it drains the batteries, and it is too large.

    If you don't want Apple Lossless, use AAC. Try out at which bitrate you can't hear the difference anymore. Take a few songs that you like and import them using Apple Lossless. Then convert them to AAC 128, AAC 160, AAC 192, AAC 224. Post again if you don't know how to do this. Play the songs back, until you reach the point where you can't hear the difference. Actually, you might stop at the point where you can't hear which one sounds better. Then take the next higher bitrate :)

    When testing the sound quality, some people (including me) make the mistake of trying it with music that is simple, where any problems with the sound are easy to hear. The same music is also very easy to compress, so you won't hear any problems. Use loud, chaotic music, that is much harder to compress. You can check the bitrate in Apple Lossless: The lower the bitrate in Apple Lossless, the easier the music is to compress. For testing, use music where Apple Lossless uses a high bitrate.

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