Audio Conversion ?'s

Discussion in 'Windows Desktop Systems' started by synical33, Jun 1, 2005.

  1. synical33

    synical33 X2 & Lovin' It

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    Well I have been debating with a good friend in regards to a vast library of music that I have available and is all MP3. He mentions that if I convert that whole library into AAC/M4A I will be able to save a lot of space without losing any quality on my MP3's. That is one thing that is of a major concern to me QUALITY. All my MP3's are VBR's and I have noticed on the program that I will use for conversion only allows to drop the VBR into any rate of KBPS (ranges from 320KBPS to 32KBPS). The program I will be using is going to be Ahead's Nero Burning ROM Software.

    Now I have been told to use iTunes (many times) but I do not want to bother with the whole library to become DRMed music. I enjoy sharing the library I have with my family and friends (locally in CA, US). So that wont be an option. So I was wondering if you guys have used any audio conversion software that has provided you with any other options as far as VBR's and what not? Or am I just doing everything wrong?

    Please correct me if I am wrong but I am not sure how to go about converting all my VBR MP3's into VBR AAC/M4A's using Ahead's Nero Burning ROM? Thanks a lot people. :nervous: :nervous: :nervous:
     
  2. NetRyder

    NetRyder Tech Junkie Folding Team

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    1) You always lose quality if you transcode from one lossy format to another - in this case, from MP3 to AAC. If quality takes precedence over space, I'd strongly suggest against any kind of transcoding. The only way you can get AAC's with the same or better quality than your current MP3's is by re-ripping all the music, assuming you have all the original CD's.

    2) Just to clear things up, ripping to AAC in iTunes does not make the tracks DRM-protected. This is the same case with ripping to WMA or MP3 in Windows Media Player. DRM is only applied if you explicitly select the option to copy-protect your music, or if you buy tracks from the iTunes Music Store (or any other online store, for that matter).

    But basically if you're concerned about quality, it's best to stick to what you currently have. As mentioned above, you will lose quality when you convert.
     
  3. dreamliner77

    dreamliner77 The Analog Kid

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    Just to echo what NetRyder said: TRANSCODING will always degrade quality. Keep the mp3's as you have them, or re-rip them.

    Since it doesn't seem like you are overly concerned with portability of the files, let me suggest the musepack format. It is regarded as the highest quality lossy codec and the moment and results in smaller file sizes than similar quality mp3's. http://www.musepack.net/
     
  4. synical33

    synical33 X2 & Lovin' It

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    Ok thanks for the advice, what is this musepack thing? Does this still mean I will lose quality or is that just too re-rip like you guys mention?
     
  5. dreamliner77

    dreamliner77 The Analog Kid

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    You will always lose quality if you if your source is anything other than lossless (pcm, wav, flac, shn, etc..)

    Musepack is just another lossy encoder, but is highly regarded and well tuned.
     
  6. synical33

    synical33 X2 & Lovin' It

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    Location:
    California, US
    gentlemen and ladies (if any helping with this ?) I have converted a good amount of music from VBR to 96kbps for my lil cousins Sony PSP (I am so getting one now =P). The matter of the fact here is it sounds really clean on his PSP. I have listened to it on my computer as well and it sounds just about the same not perfectly identical but just a notch down. I know I know for those audiophiles out there they would note that and frown upon it but the space saved is like WOW!!!. As far as what program was used for the conversion I have found that this Nero Ultra Edition coupled with the MP3Pro plugin or the PowerPack LAME Encoder is perfect for converting and on top of that it is extremly fast. I had about 28 tracks on queue for conversion and I let it convert, it only took 2.5 minutes to convert them all from VBR to 96kbps (remember it was for my little cousins PSP, not for me). So yeah i'm still struggling on the whole conversion of my library but I must admit that this was a good test to verify quality but that was for the PSP alone.

    My next plan will possibly be taking a chunk out of my library and converting that along with a quality check right after since I just finished setting up my server in the garage (damn! I am so happy that is finally completed, life long dream and goal finally accomplished WOO HOO!!!). So for those that ever need advice on this topic they can take a look in this forum and see if this will help them some. :D:D:D

    Thanks for your advice guys I will keep you updated on my observations. Bye
     
  7. Johnny

    Johnny .. Commodore .. Political User

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    I've used Nero with mp3pro a couple of times .. I always go back to EAC though, it is the king. There will always be a drop in quality when converting from one bitrate to another, not matter how slight it might be ..