iPod What lossy format for iPod? Best app to convert from ALAC to lossy?


macrumors 603
Original poster
Feb 6, 2006
I have my entire library (1100 CDs) ripped and archived in ALAC so that I can play them across my AirTunes network on my stereo. While there are better lossless formats it works with iTunes, AirTunes, iPod and has nice tags embedded in its container.

Now I want to create a separate library for my 60GB iPod. It is not essential that I can store absolutely all the tracks on my iPod though that would not be a bad thing either.

What format do you wise people recommend that I convert to? AAC? Some sort of MP3 VBR? Something else? Obviously, audio quality is very important. Future portability outside of the Apple realm is not so important as I do have the lossless file archived and there are a number of apps that will convert these to any other lossless format that I may need in the future. Obviously, for now I want to be able to play these lossy files on an iPod and in iTunes from my MacBook when I am on the road.

Any recommendations on which app to use? Do some do a better job of conversion than others?


macrumors 603
Apr 29, 2005
San Francisco
AAC 128 should be more than enough for you, considering ears cannot distinguish any bit rate higher. But if you aren't convinced by that AAC 160 will be your best bet.


macrumors 68030
Jun 15, 2005
Go for 192kbps AAC. I notice artifacts on 128kbps when I crank up the volume on a stereo or on the road. But then again, everyones ears are different so it'll be best to experiment with a few tracks and a few bitrates.


macrumors 68040
Apr 11, 2003
I recommend AAC 192. There is a clear difference between this and something like 128.