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Which codec do you use?
gambito
post Sep 30 2001, 20:57
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Archival it's done on cheap today's cd-r's

For listening on computer speakers or through home stereo i use lame with the dibrom's metal preset. I don't like the huge files of the other presets or the unpredictable size of the r3mix's one also for compatibility with most of the (software) players (love apollo and bpm studio).

For making samples for distribution I use vorbis at 80 that gives me files averaging 75 to 85 kbps with superb quality (for that bitrate!), better than wma7/8 that i was using previously

For storing until I'm ready to burn to cd-r I use monkey's audio

bye bye
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Jon Ingram
post Oct 1 2001, 08:01
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QUOTE
Originally posted by gambito
For making samples for distribution I use vorbis at 80 that gives me files averaging 75 to 85 kbps with superb quality (for that bitrate!)


Have you found much difference between 64 and 80? All of the artifacts I've noticed with 64 have still been there with 80 (and 96), and I've not found a clip that sounds significantly better for the extra 16 kb/s.

(I hope RC3 has a tuned 112 mode again -- that's the bitrate I tended to use with Beta4 and it worked well enough for background listening)
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gambito
post Oct 1 2001, 15:33
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I've encoded a variety of music (it's a sampler) and yes i noticed an audible difference. Well maybe this deppend on the quality of the listener ears smile.gif and my poor ears can hear only to 15khz

furthermore i'm not using the rc-2 on vorbis.com but the rc-2 on easy cd-da extractor that appears to sound better and his output almost equal to the august 30 build posted here:

http://www.din.or.jp/~glit/TheOddStage/Pro...utobuild_e.html
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Jan S.
post Oct 1 2001, 15:41
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I use mpc -extreme.

The only problem is that I love id3-tags so I hope that mpc will some day have id3v2 tags also.
Does anyone know if it will?
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Garf
post Oct 1 2001, 17:08
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QUOTE
Originally posted by gambito
furthermore i'm not using the rc-2 on vorbis.com but the rc-2 on easy cd-da extractor that appears to sound better and his output almost equal to the august 30 build posted here:


The august 30 build may have stereo fixes, which would remove the hissyness, but also includes noise masking which was totally unstable at that time. (Unstable enough that Monty asked me and FastForward _not_ to distribute binaries)

I don't really like what Easy CDDA is doing...if they are using the CVS version (from your comments they should be, as there were no official releases after RC2) it's wrong to advertise it as RC2. Have fun debugging bugs/quality problem reports if the versions users think they've got are wrong!

RC3alpha0.1 or so would be a more appropriate tag in this case.

--
GCP
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dawsoo2222
post Oct 1 2001, 17:15
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I use for CDR Archiving (later use) Monkey-APE,and music for me Psytel AAC 1.0 160kbps -vbrhi or MPC -extreme,for compatability (PC DJ,etc..) lame 3.90a7 "-ms -br 256 -q 0" or "-mj -abr 160 -q 2" And newly tested Vorbis-OGG 0.8 RC2.For CD grab EAC or CDex.Soundcard M-Audio Delta Audiophile 2496.
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Ivion
post Oct 1 2001, 22:12
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Well.....here's my story biggrin.gif:
I began with Xing Audiocatalyst (I'm so ashamed of myself....then I always tought the quality was good sad.gif)
After that i started experimenting with many other codecs...the most important were (and I still use these smile.gif): LAME, MP+/MPC, OGG and AAC.
I also tested Blade....but I never used it again....man....the sound sucked. biggrin.gif
I use MP+ the most....it has the best compression method...I can only hear the diference between the orginal and the MP+ file in very rare cases.
OGG is also very good....I think it'll be a great codec someday.
I also use MP3 alot...mainly because my friends don't understand those other codecs. smile.gif
And ofcourse; AAC. Idon't use this codec very much...only for a few of my older songs i recorded then with AAC....because MP+ is just a little better.

Well that was my story tongue.gif....thx for readin'!
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Agent86
post Oct 2 2001, 05:45
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Oh boy... I remember when Winplay3 was the standard player smile.gif.

Regardless, I used FhG for a long time until I started reading up on decoders, and then that lead to encoders and LAME.

I picked it up on the tail end of LAME 3.87's beta run, and re-encoded much of my collection (which was then 128cbr) with the --r3mix setting at that time. It was lightyears better then what I was getting out of FhG, and sold me forever.

Since then I have followed LAME through 3.88, 3.89 and 3.90 Alpha 7.

I like the idea/work behind Ogg - so that's my side "toy" when it comes to tracking new encoders. Like many others, I'm waiting for it to settle down a bit and get into a gradual (yet rapid) feature/bugfix path. Once it gets a green light from people who are much better at this then I, I'll start giving it a go.

- Agent 86
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gambito
post Oct 2 2001, 06:08
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> The august 30 build may have stereo fixes, which would
>remove the hissyness, but also includes noise masking which
> was totally unstable at that time...

that hissyness was a real annoyance in the original rc-2 and i like more that unstable rc-3 alpha, it's a sad that the later alphas only support 128kbps

i can't wait so much for rc-3 tongue.gif
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h
post Oct 2 2001, 06:26
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Oh jeez.. I started out "archiving" CDs with Blade at 128k - the artifacts never bothered me that much (with my $10 sound card and speakers), and I thought I was old skool for using the highest quality setting and disabling the lowpass.

Lately I've been archiving CDs with psytel aacenc "-ultra" and using 128kbit Oggs for casual listening - not sure why, my ears are so bad I could probably get away with 96kbit. I can ABX differences at higher bitrates, but it takes a huge effort, and I never pick artifacts in casual listening unless Xing, Blade or WMA are the culprits.

Sometimes I don't know whether to envy or pity a set of "golden ears" =)

-h
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Jon Ingram
post Oct 2 2001, 07:52
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QUOTE
Originally posted by h
Sometimes I don't know whether to envy or pity a set of "golden ears" =)

And that brings up a couple of interesting points.

Firstly -- a lot of effort seems to be going into optimizing sound quality for 'golden ears'. Given that these people are by definition abnormal ( :-) ), is it possible that improving the sound quality for them could actually reduce sound quality for the average person?

Secondly -- are all artifacts bad? Do any codecs actually produce artifacts which *improve* the quality of the sound?
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YinYang
post Oct 2 2001, 08:04
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QUOTE
Originally posted by Jon Ingram

And that brings up a couple of interesting points.

..is it possible that improving the sound quality for them could actually reduce sound quality for the average person?


Don't think so. But this is merely an intuitial response.

QUOTE
Secondly -- are all artifacts bad? Do any codecs actually produce artifacts which *improve* the quality of the sound?


I believe that artifacts have made me aware of more songs with hidden "The Devil Made Me Do It" meanings. biggrin.gif

["Did I ever tell you about this hidden backward sentence I only heard in a Xing-encoded MP3 of "Amazing Grace" "]
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h
post Oct 2 2001, 08:29
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> .. is it possible that improving the sound quality for them could actually reduce sound quality for the average person?

For the most part, people with better hearing can point out the artifacts which they find most prominent with better accuracy. The rest of us can then enjoy slightly better quality than before, since that weird niggly feeling we had about a certain hihat has been usefully (and verbosely) identified by someone else, and fixed in the encoder.

> Secondly -- are all artifacts bad? Do any codecs actually produce artifacts which *improve* the quality of the sound?

I guess a wavelet-based audio coder could inadvertently remove noise from a recording (wavelet image compression is a nice noise remover), but artifacts are generally a Bad Thing.

Unless you like how $encoder performs at 32 kbit/s =)

-h
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Dibrom
post Oct 2 2001, 09:20
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QUOTE
Originally posted by Jon Ingram

And that brings up a couple of interesting points.

Firstly -- a lot of effort seems to be going into optimizing sound quality for 'golden ears'. Given that these people are by definition abnormal ( :-) ), is it possible that improving the sound quality for them could actually reduce sound quality for the average person?


I don't think so. Most people hear the same artifacts, and hear them in the same "way", just not to the same degree I think. Also, if certain codecs which are tuned by listeners with very sensitive hearing are any indication (I believe MPC and PsyTEL AAC are 2 prime examples), then this can only actually be a good thing.

QUOTE
Secondly -- are all artifacts bad? Do any codecs actually produce artifacts which *improve* the quality of the sound?


I think this depends more on your idea of what sounds good in music. For example, there are many people that prefer the sound of vinyl and tube amps over cds and solid state. Obviously the former adds more of a certain "character" to the sound which may not necessarily be present in the original, and some people like this. Then there is also the issue of things like sound "enhancers" or things like that, I tend to think most of the time those types of things are bad myself... though others sound modification devices like EQ's can be a good thing. So, I believe the answer to this is really pretty subjective. To me, accuracy to the original source material, no matter whether or not THAT sounds bad, is what is important.
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ozy
post Oct 2 2001, 22:39
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Hi, this is my first post here and i'll get straight to the point. smile.gif

Once upon a time, I used to be content with 128kbps CBR rips (Xing) - but now, after discovering the strange, mysterious land of "r3mix" (and now here too), paranoia has set in. I just tend to rip the tracks from the CD directly and compress with Monkeys Audio. I think it's a psychological thing; it's nice to know in the back of my mind that no data has been lost, and i'm listening to an exact replica of the original.
However, for tracks I don't care much for I usually just rip to MP3 (--remix VBR). I've not tried Dibrom's settings, but i'm guessing I wouldn't notice the difference between the two. I'm keeping a close eye on Vorbis though, I think it's the most promising format for the future.
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Volcano
post Oct 3 2001, 09:53
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I started with FastEnc at 128 kbps and used it for one year. I could hear the artifacts on many tracks, but I wasn't too bothered about perfect quality then. It sounded good enough for me (for "casual" listening), and I still think that FastEnc is the best 128 kbps MP3 codec.
Half a year ago, I switched to EAC + LAME --r3mix, which I think is really good. I can sort of live with the bitrates, and to me, the quality is outstanding.
Doesn't mean I'm creating "good" MP3s though, as EAC recently has messed up all my WAV files and introduced clicks everywhere wink.gif

I'm taking a close look at OGG 128 kbps. As long as the artifacts aren't too annoying, I can live with a _slight_ audible loss in quality. The main thing stopping me from switching to OGG is the lack of ID3v2 tags (which I use excessively smile.gif) and the "compatibility to friends".

CU
Dominic
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Jon Ingram
post Oct 3 2001, 12:27
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QUOTE
I'm taking a close look at OGG 128 kbps. As long as the artifacts aren't too annoying, I can live with a _slight_ audible loss in quality. The main thing stopping me from switching to OGG is the lack of ID3v2 tags (which I use excessively smile.gif) and the "compatibility to friends".


Well, RC2 Vorbis 128K is working perfectly well on 90% of the music I've thrown at it. The stuff that hasn't worked well has either been very echoey (Vorbis seems to muffle the sound) or has certain high pitched noises (which sound a bit 'crunchy'). Going to 160K solves all of these as far as *my* hearing is concerned.

I'm looking forward to RC3 -- particularly listening to the lower bitrates. 64K Vorbis could be a great way to preview albums before they buy them.

--

Why do you need ID3 tags, when Vorbis has a much simpler and more flexible tagging system? You can include as much meta-data as you want, naming the fields whatever you want.
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Volcano
post Oct 3 2001, 13:01
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QUOTE
Originally posted by Jon Ingram
Well, RC2 Vorbis 128K is working perfectly well on 90% of the music I've thrown at it. The stuff that hasn't worked well has either been very echoey (Vorbis seems to muffle the sound) or has certain high pitched noises (which sound a bit 'crunchy'). Going to 160K solves all of these as far as *my* hearing is concerned.

I'll try 160kbps. I tested 128k OGG some while ago, I could still easily tell the difference to the original, but the quality was still very good - I could live with it.
QUOTE
I'm looking forward to RC3 -- particularly listening to the lower bitrates.

Yep. If the 128 kbps mode produces even better results than it does currently, I think I really will switch over. Would save me a lot of disk space...
QUOTE
Why do you need ID3 tags, when Vorbis has a much simpler and more flexible tagging system? You can include as much meta-data as you want, naming the fields whatever you want.

That's exactly what I don't like about it. Winamp's ID3v2 editor offers me Composer, Original Artist, Copyright and Encoded By, all of which (except URL) I use for all encodes. I wouldn't want to punch in all the names of these fields myself.
Besides, I can't edit all those values with ID3 taggers like MP3/Tag Studio (yeah I know, spyware and all, but there's a simple way round that problem), which also is quite a piss-off.

CU
Dominic
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dmarc34
post Oct 11 2001, 14:22
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Hi,

This is my first post in this great forum...

My History :

I first used MP3 encoding with easy CDDA Extractor (with a Blade encoder, first at 192 Kb/s and after at 256 Kb/s). The majority of my collection was made with this software (not too bad at 256)

Now I'm using EAC with Lame (3.90) with r3mix or dm presets. For listening, I use Winamp with the MAD plugin.

I also use MPC (standard) and I will try ogg when the next release will be available.
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tHe_BiNk
post Oct 25 2001, 13:00
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Hi,

mostly (razor)lame at 192 vbr or FAAC-FAAD at 128


--------------------
Greetings, tHe_BiNk......
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john33
post Oct 25 2001, 13:13
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If you are looking at Ogg 128, you might want to try the daily binaries at:

http//www.din.or.jp/~glit/TheOddStage/Progs/Vorbis/autobuild_e.html

These only encode at 128 but to my ears there is a big improvement over RC2. Give it a try and let us know what you think.

john33
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huanjo
post Oct 25 2001, 17:35
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The theory of evolution says that the best will always eventually come to the fore. Thats why I'm placing my bets on mpc.
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Somebody
post Oct 25 2001, 20:41
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I use mpc for my personal use (which is most of the time now)

other than that, I use LAME with dibrom's presets.
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krsna77
post Oct 26 2001, 20:48
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QUOTE
Originally posted by huanjo
The theory of evolution says that the best will always eventually come to the fore. Thats why I'm placing my bets on mpc.


If that were the whole story, then Microsoft would not be the dominant software company they are today.

An amended theory of software evolution (and economics) would state that there are always many other variables to consider than mere technical superiority, that eventually lead to dominance.
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Garf
post Oct 26 2001, 20:57
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The theory of evolution still holds.

It's just that 'best' mostly isn't related to audio quality, but to marketing, FUD and monopoly tactics.

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GCP
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