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Smallest File / Mostly Transparent Encoder?, Have not been keeping up..
funkyblue
post Nov 13 2012, 16:21
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Is there a somewhat consensus that FhG is better than QAAC now?

I note the listening tests are about a year old now.

Thanks smile.gif
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funkyblue
post Nov 13 2012, 16:24
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QUOTE (greensdrive @ Nov 14 2012, 00:20) *
check QAAC's wiki, https://github.com/nu774/qaac/wiki
it has a page: "Command Line Options".


I did see that, but it was not clear. Are there any addition options needed for highest quality? or has it been simplified to just the bitrate?

There was also not many Foobar examples.

I do not mean to criticise at all. Just hard trying to figure it all out and even getting the encoder files are hard enough!
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greensdrive
post Nov 13 2012, 16:44
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my foobar2000 command line for approximately 128 kbps (for example):
--ignorelength --no-optimize --quality 2 --silent --tvbr 63 - -o %d

for very high vbr (around 320 kbps, or more) just put 127 instead of 63.

a command line for about 96 kbps would be:
--ignorelength --no-optimize --quality 2 --silent --tvbr 45 - -o %d

the "--quality 2" is default (and the highest), but I still use it. "--no-optimize" is probably useless to anyone other than me - it just doesn't optimize the mp4 container.

there is no "-q 0" or "-q 9" like in LAME; there is "--quality 0", but that means less quality.

there's less options related to quality when it comes to qaac, and maybe all AAC encoders. Apple has the best encoder according to listening tests, which is what qaac uses anyway.

almost forgot about "--cvbr". constrained VBR allows for more control, like:
"--cvbr 96" would give a little bit more controlled bitrate at about 96 kbps, but it's still vbr.
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IgorC
post Nov 13 2012, 16:48
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QUOTE (funkyblue @ Nov 13 2012, 12:13) *
-V45 -o %d -

Average of 96kbits. Is that the highest quality option for that bitrate?

Yes, it's the highest quality setting for true VBR (-V, TVBR ). You can try a constrained VBR as well (-v, CVBR) -v 96 for comparable bitrate. CVBR has higher score than TVBR though without statistic difference. http://listening-tests.hydrogenaudio.org/i...-96-a/index.htm


QUOTE (funkyblue @ Nov 13 2012, 12:21) *
Is there a somewhat consensus that FhG is better than QAAC now?

I note the listening tests are about a year old now.

Thanks smile.gif

The situation hasn't changed since then. There were some small tunings but major releases remain the same.
AAC encoders were tested since a long time ago http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Codec_listening_test
And Apple encoder is/was always on top. It could be the case that Apple LC-AAC encoder has reached the best possible quality for the entire AAC format. Possibly there are some other LC-AAC encoders with same or near the same quality but never better than it.

This post has been edited by IgorC: Nov 13 2012, 16:51
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Brand
post Nov 13 2012, 16:51
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QUOTE (funkyblue @ Nov 13 2012, 17:21) *
Is there a somewhat consensus that FhG is better than QAAC now?

I note the listening tests are about a year old now.

Thanks smile.gif

I don't think there's such a consensus, no.

I did like FhG a tiny bit better than QAAC on a single sample I compared them with, but that's definitely not enough to draw any conclusions. Besides one might perform better than the other only at specific bitrates.
I prefer to use it simply because it's a bit easier to use with Foobar, technically (perhaps not legally) you don't need to install anything, just extract a couple of files.
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funkyblue
post Nov 13 2012, 16:53
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QUOTE (greensdrive @ Nov 14 2012, 00:44) *
my foobar2000 command line for approximately 128 kbps (for example):
--ignorelength --no-optimize --quality 2 --silent --tvbr 63 - -o %d

for very high vbr (around 320 kbps, or more) just put 127 instead of 63.

a command line for about 96 kbps would be:
--ignorelength --no-optimize --quality 2 --silent --tvbr 45 - -o %d

the "--quality 2" is default (and the highest), but I still use it. "--no-optimize" is probably useless to anyone other than me - it just doesn't optimize the mp4 container.

there is no "-q 0" or "-q 9" like in LAME; there is "--quality 0", but that means less quality.

there's less options related to quality when it comes to qaac, and maybe all AAC encoders. Apple has the best encoder according to listening tests, which is what qaac uses anyway.

almost forgot about "--cvbr". constrained VBR allows for more control, like:
"--cvbr 96" would give a little bit more controlled bitrate at about 96 kbps, but it's still vbr.


THANK YOU! Thank explains it! Makes perfect sense. I am encoding a bunch of 20 tracks at 96 kbps and see how it sounds. (Yes, I know that is not scientific etc)

QUOTE (IgorC @ Nov 14 2012, 00:48) *
QUOTE (funkyblue @ Nov 13 2012, 12:13) *
-V45 -o %d -

Average of 96kbits. Is that the highest quality option for that bitrate?

Yes, it's the highest quality setting for true VBR (-V, TVBR ). You can try a constrained VBR as well (-v, CVBR) -v 96 for comparable bitrate. CVBR has higher score than TVBR though without statistic difference. http://listening-tests.hydrogenaudio.org/i...-96-a/index.htm


QUOTE (funkyblue @ Nov 13 2012, 12:21) *
Is there a somewhat consensus that FhG is better than QAAC now?

I note the listening tests are about a year old now.

Thanks smile.gif

The situation hasn't changed since then. There were some small tunings but major releases remain the same.
AAC encoders were tested since a long time ago http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Codec_listening_test
And Apple encoder is/was always on top. It could be the case that Apple AAC encoder has reached the best possible quality for the entire AAC format. Possibly there are some other AAC encoders with same or near the same quality but never better than it.


Thank you as well. I'll stick with QAAC now it is working.

Thanks again everyone. Much appreciated.
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funkyblue
post Nov 13 2012, 17:28
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I am truly shocked at the quality of 96kbits!

While I can hear some artifacts, it is still very good.

I'll do some abxing on 112 tomorrow.

Things have really come along way from the 128kbit Blade days biggrin.gif
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yourlord
post Nov 13 2012, 18:12
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What kind of phone? All Android phones will play OGG Vorbis and Foobar2000 will natively encode to it as far as I know.
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pdq
post Nov 13 2012, 18:33
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QUOTE (funkyblue @ Nov 13 2012, 06:18) *
I am currently using a Galaxy Nexus 16gb and due to the Nexus 4's lack of space I'll be stuck with 16gb again, so smallest file size without compromising quality too much.

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eahm
post Nov 13 2012, 19:02
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QUOTE (funkyblue @ Nov 13 2012, 08:13) *
So I have managed to get this to work:

qaac.exe in Foobar2000.

-V45 -o %d -

Average of 96kbits. Is that the highest quality option for that bitrate?

If so I'll play around that bitrate area.

Thanks everyone smile.gif

Q0 - Q4 (0) = ~40 Kbps
Q5 - Q13 (9) = ~45 Kbps
Q14 - Q22 (18) = ~75 Kbps
Q23 - Q31 (27) = ~80 Kbps
Q32 - Q40 (36) = ~95 Kbps
Q41 - Q49 (45) = ~105 Kbps
Q50 - Q58 (54) = ~115 Kbps
Q59 - Q68 (63) = ~135 Kbps
Q69 - Q77 (73) = ~150 Kbps
Q78 - Q86 (82) = ~165 Kbps
Q87 - Q95 (91) = ~195 Kbps
Q96 - Q104 (100) = ~225 Kbps
Q105 - Q113 (109) = ~255 Kbps
Q114 - Q122 (118) = ~285 Kbps
Q123 - Q127 (127) = ~320 Kbps


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funkyblue
post Nov 14 2012, 15:18
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I could ABX 112kbits. Could not ABX files in Lame -V4 3.100 Alpha.

I'll give 128kbits a shot next.
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IgorC
post Nov 14 2012, 16:37
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QUOTE (funkyblue @ Nov 14 2012, 11:18) *
I could ABX 112kbits. Could not ABX files in Lame -V4 3.100 Alpha.

And no, a separate ABX tests aren't useful to compare different codecs. Prejudice will always be there.
One should perform blind test with two encoders at the same time (ABC/HR).









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pdq
post Nov 14 2012, 16:52
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It appears that funkyblue is only using ABX to discover the level of transparency for each codec, and will then select the codec whose transparency level uses the least bits. This is a perfectly valid use of ABX.

If he were comparing codecs that are not quite transparent to choose the least offensive one then ABC/HR would be appropriate.
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IgorC
post Nov 14 2012, 17:06
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It's not that simple and linear.

The conditions between two ABX sessions vary a lot. Add to it personal prejudice about that higher bitrate produce better results (no matter what encoder) and faster abort of ABX session with claim of transparency. Typical case.

Shortly ABX isn't meant for comparison between two and more encoders. Well, If You search for average level of transparency but later still You will try to make a conclusion that encoder A is better than encoder B . So, no go. Only ABC/HR.
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eahm
post Nov 14 2012, 19:07
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QUOTE (funkyblue @ Nov 13 2012, 08:21) *
Is there a somewhat consensus that FhG is better than QAAC now?

I note the listening tests are about a year old now.

Thanks smile.gif

FhG = Fraunhofer and it's ok to say it because they make the AAC codec but QAAC doesn't mean anything, QAAC uses Apple libraries to create AAC so it's Apple.

Apple still better.

This post has been edited by eahm: Nov 14 2012, 19:21


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Brand
post Nov 14 2012, 19:32
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But wasn't the only AAC comparison done at ~96kbps? Isn't that insufficient to say one codec is better in general?

This post has been edited by Brand: Nov 14 2012, 19:32
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eahm
post Nov 14 2012, 20:54
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AAC achieve transparency at around 128kbps, obviously they are all "good" over ~128kbps and if one of them is better at ~96kbps it means it's better in general.

Now, a different discussion can be made for HE and HEv2 but I don't use them, I don't know enough.

This post has been edited by eahm: Nov 14 2012, 20:55


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funkyblue
post Nov 15 2012, 01:49
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QUOTE (IgorC @ Nov 15 2012, 01:06) *
It's not that simple and linear.

The conditions between two ABX sessions vary a lot. Add to it personal prejudice about that higher bitrate produce better results (no matter what encoder) and faster abort of ABX session with claim of transparency. Typical case.

Shortly ABX isn't meant for comparison between two and more encoders. Well, If You search for average level of transparency but later still You will try to make a conclusion that encoder A is better than encoder B . So, no go. Only ABC/HR.


That is true. I lean towards LAME -V4 because it is larger in size. My mind still has issues with low bit rates.

That being said I just tried to ABX 5 songs at random as a quick test on 112 AAC and could not.

Is there a guide to setup and do a proper test for say 10 tracks and I can pick various bitrates?

It is annoying in Foobar to have to do 2 at a time and listening to the same samples over and over.
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IgorC
post Nov 15 2012, 15:10
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I'm glad You are open mind. smile.gif

Here is a guide
http://www.rarewares.org/rja/ListeningTest.pdf

ABC/HR application
http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index....st&p=683924
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funkyblue
post Nov 21 2012, 05:20
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QUOTE (eahm @ Nov 14 2012, 04:02) *
QUOTE (funkyblue @ Nov 13 2012, 08:13) *
So I have managed to get this to work:

qaac.exe in Foobar2000.

-V45 -o %d -

Average of 96kbits. Is that the highest quality option for that bitrate?

If so I'll play around that bitrate area.

Thanks everyone smile.gif

Q0 - Q4 (0) = ~40 Kbps
Q5 - Q13 (9) = ~45 Kbps
Q14 - Q22 (18) = ~75 Kbps
Q23 - Q31 (27) = ~80 Kbps
Q32 - Q40 (36) = ~95 Kbps
Q41 - Q49 (45) = ~105 Kbps
Q50 - Q58 (54) = ~115 Kbps
Q59 - Q68 (63) = ~135 Kbps
Q69 - Q77 (73) = ~150 Kbps
Q78 - Q86 (82) = ~165 Kbps
Q87 - Q95 (91) = ~195 Kbps
Q96 - Q104 (100) = ~225 Kbps
Q105 - Q113 (109) = ~255 Kbps
Q114 - Q122 (118) = ~285 Kbps
Q123 - Q127 (127) = ~320 Kbps


Are the numbers next to the Q ie (82) the middle value?
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eahm
post Nov 21 2012, 06:18
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QUOTE (funkyblue @ Nov 20 2012, 21:20) *
QUOTE (eahm @ Nov 14 2012, 04:02) *
QUOTE (funkyblue @ Nov 13 2012, 08:13) *
So I have managed to get this to work:

qaac.exe in Foobar2000.

-V45 -o %d -

Average of 96kbits. Is that the highest quality option for that bitrate?

If so I'll play around that bitrate area.

Thanks everyone smile.gif

Q0 - Q4 (0) = ~40 Kbps
Q5 - Q13 (9) = ~45 Kbps
Q14 - Q22 (18) = ~75 Kbps
Q23 - Q31 (27) = ~80 Kbps
Q32 - Q40 (36) = ~95 Kbps
Q41 - Q49 (45) = ~105 Kbps
Q50 - Q58 (54) = ~115 Kbps
Q59 - Q68 (63) = ~135 Kbps
Q69 - Q77 (73) = ~150 Kbps
Q78 - Q86 (82) = ~165 Kbps
Q87 - Q95 (91) = ~195 Kbps
Q96 - Q104 (100) = ~225 Kbps
Q105 - Q113 (109) = ~255 Kbps
Q114 - Q122 (118) = ~285 Kbps
Q123 - Q127 (127) = ~320 Kbps


Are the numbers next to the Q ie (82) the middle value?

Those are the numbers qaac pushes when you select between the min and the max. For example -V79, -V80... -V85, -V86 they all give -V82. I think it's a True VBR average, that maybe nu774 or Apple set up, I don't know precisely who and I didn't test qtaacenc to see if the result is the same.
I've actually put them there myself, testing qaac, for an easy reminder of the exact setting I have to insert when I save on foobar2000.

This post has been edited by eahm: Nov 21 2012, 06:23


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