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[Discussion] List of recommended LAME settings, V2 (for LAME 3.97)
user
post Sep 28 2005, 10:15
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indeed, that is correct and on purpose. Please read the mp3-lame settings sticky topic in mp3-general forum.


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Synthetic Soul
post Sep 28 2005, 11:31
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Will the final document still be a post in the forum, or a wiki page?

It seems that you have a lot better formatting tools with the wiki, and the ability to upload images.

Can you lock a wiki page so only one user can edit it? I'm not familiar with administering a wiki. I know it kinda goes against the idea of a wiki, but I'm sure it's possible.

Just a thought.


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user
post Sep 28 2005, 11:47
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I vote for wiki page and keeping the sticky post, both,
as newbies might find the forum, but not the wiki, or vice versa.
wiki can be different layout, of course.

ToDo list:

* update/edit of the 2 stickies:
recommended lame compiles & about lame (alpha) versions history

* wiki
^ so far I find only more tech informations about mp3/mpc etc. at wiki, but no howto guide for end-users, like the recommended settings topic ? <-- wiki will be improved, if there are also guides for end-users, like the mp3/ogg/mpc stickies.





* include link or directly the content of the recommended settings thread into the basic Lame text files, which are bundled, if you download lame.exe usually, you know, what I mean, probably:
basic.html , examples.html , modes.html , presets.html
More or less, those pages deal with the usage of Lame.
eg:
* modes.html explains about vbr, abr, cbr, but the clear hint is missing, that at given bitrate, quality should be : vbr>abr>cbr
* presets.html : deals with the medium, standard, extreme presets, but thanks to the -Vx system, we have nowadays more very good options. basically, the -Vx table of the recommended settings topic could be integrated to that page.
* basic.html: Basic command line switch reference
Only the most usual switches are described here. However those should be sufficient for the vast majority of users.

well, switches like -h etc etc. are mentioned there, abr, cbr, but no structured system regarding quality, efficiency. The recommended settings topic was years ago invented, to improve the guidance for the "vast majority of users".
maybe basic+presets+examples.html could be merged, or better structured with today's Lame knowledge.

Gabriel, do you have influence to edit these bundled Lame html pages ?


edit-addon:

sent email via HA to Gabriel, worked on examples.html , modes.html , presets.html;
mostly presets.html, the other 2 files only minor updates, so that everything will be smooth now, no contradictions anymore, and everything updated to the fascinating qualities of lame 3.97.


* I cannot work on wiki and update of the other 2 stickies, tasks for you, somebody else, yes you, who reads this !

This post has been edited by user: Sep 28 2005, 16:38


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Gabriel
post Sep 28 2005, 13:27
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QUOTE
* modes.html explains about vbr, abr, cbr, but the clear hint is missing, that at given bitrate, quality should be : vbr>abr>cbr

I am not sure that VBR > ABR when dealing with low bitrates.


QUOTE
well, switches like -h etc etc. are mentioned there, abr, cbr, but no structured system regarding quality, efficiency.

This is because if we (Lame project) make some quality judgements, we usually have a flood of people claiming that we are totally wrong because they found some cases where the situation is different, or they prefer to add another option. Usually, soon after we hear things like the fact that we are not interested about quality.

ie: experience demonstrated that if we clearly expose our choices and judgements we are beeing flamed, thus I prefer to be on the safe side.

QUOTE
Gabriel, do you have influence to edit these bundled Lame html pages ?

Considering that usually I am the one editing them, yes. However, having time is another matter.
Feel free to send me some modified versions.
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kwanbis
post Sep 28 2005, 14:09
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QUOTE (dev0 @ Sep 28 2005, 07:47 AM)
The remaining questions are if we want to keep the "Quick Start" (-V 2) recommendation or leave that out alltogether.

i vote to keep it.


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PoisonDan
post Sep 28 2005, 14:30
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QUOTE (kwanbis @ Sep 28 2005, 03:09 PM)
QUOTE (dev0 @ Sep 28 2005, 07:47 AM)
The remaining questions are if we want to keep the "Quick Start" (-V 2) recommendation or leave that out alltogether.

i vote to keep it.
*


I vote not to keep it (yeah, I can be a nuisance sometimes tongue.gif).

Just look at the recommended settings post for Ogg Vorbis, it doesn't specify a quick start setting either. It doesn't seem like -V 2 is the ultimate solution for everybody (for example, I use -V 4).

Should we create a poll for this?


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magic75
post Sep 28 2005, 16:17
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QUOTE (dev0 @ Sep 27 2005, 03:02 AM)
ABR (Average Bitrate)

ABR mode is a type of VBR mode where you can specify the target bitrate. Files created with the normal VBR mode will be of a higher quality than those created with the ABR mode at the same bitrate. Use ABR mode when bitrate predictability is more important than quality.

--abr n (where n is any number between 8-320)

Example: --abr 173

Very minor thing considering all the other ongoing discussions ...
I suggest adding "predictability" as above. Could otherwise possibly be misunderstood as bitrate in terms of size...
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mad_arab
post Sep 30 2005, 12:08
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QUOTE (Gabriel @ Sep 27 2005, 05:10 AM)
What about a perceived quality vs size graph?

Arbitrarily, I'd give the following quality levels:

--abr 56: 3
--abr 90: 5
-V5: 7
-V4: 8
-V3:8.5
-V2: 8.7
-V0: 9.1
-b 320: 9.2

This is purely informal, but if you trace a graph of perceived quality vs average size, you will probably obtain a nice curve with valuable indication regarding efficiency of the settings.
*


Seems -V3 is a good compromise for a recommendation IMO. Because you gain little quality in going to -V2 while file size increases more than the perceived quality gain. At the same time it is notches above the still decent -V4 and -V5 which has been tested to still sound very good.
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mad_arab
post Sep 30 2005, 12:09
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BTW, is there a plan to make the -AP settings use vbr-new in the final version?
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Synthetic Soul
post Sep 30 2005, 12:13
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I can't find it now, but I have seen Gabriel state unequivocally (in a post quite possibly on this thread) that --vbr-new will not be the default in 3.97.

Edit: Here it is.

This post has been edited by Synthetic Soul: Sep 30 2005, 12:19


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benc
post Oct 1 2005, 01:24
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QUOTE (magic75 @ Sep 28 2005, 03:17 PM)
QUOTE (dev0 @ Sep 27 2005, 03:02 AM)
ABR (Average Bitrate)

ABR mode is a type of VBR mode where you can specify the target bitrate. Files created with the normal VBR mode will be of a higher quality than those created with the ABR mode at the same bitrate. Use ABR mode when bitrate predictability is more important than quality.

--abr n (where n is any number between 8-320)

Example: --abr 173

Very minor thing considering all the other ongoing discussions ...
I suggest adding "predictability" as above. Could otherwise possibly be misunderstood as bitrate in terms of size...
*



I agree and I was thinking of something similar when I was re-reading my original post.

---

As for which -V preset to tell people to use, maybe something like this could be included after a table showing the bitrates for each setting:

QUOTE
The VBR settings provide different quality levels, adapted to different configurations/needs. There is no "correct" quality level to use, and the following is only a suggestion to help you get started:

For portables devices with limited storage capacity try V5, V6 or V7.
For normal high quality usages try V3 or V4.
For transparency try V2 or better.


This post has been edited by benc: Oct 1 2005, 01:25
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guruboolez
post Oct 3 2005, 13:22
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What about this quickstart:



QUICKSTART



low bitrate (1CD DVD Rip, radio recording, mono encodings...): for inferior bitrate to 100 kbps, ABR is probably the best solution. Just use --abr xx (ex: --abr 80).

portable: -V6 (~115 kbps), -V5 (~130 kbps) or -V4 (~160 kbps) are recommended for this usage. -V6 produces average but decent quality, whereas -V4 should already be close to perceptual transparency.

(very) high quality: -V3 (~175 kbps), V2 (~190 kbps), V1 (~210 kbps) or V0 (~230 kbps). Transparent encodings. Audible difference among these presets exists but is really marginal.

[optional]
Best quality (archiving): cbr 320. This is the strongest setting for LAME MP3. Lowest risk of artefacts. But keep in mind that except really few situations quality is rarely better than for highest VBR profiles described previously. That's why cbr 320 is called "insane" and is not recommended for a simple listening purpose.
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kritip
post Oct 3 2005, 13:47
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QUOTE (guruboolez @ Oct 3 2005, 01:22 PM)
That's why cbr 320 is called "insane" and is not recommended for a simple listening purpose.


Is is still called insane then? If all the other -preset xxxxx are now legacy in favour of -V x then is it stilll correct to call it insane?? Forgive me if im way off the mark though. Otherwise, it looks a good quickstart.

Kristian
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shadowking
post Oct 3 2005, 13:50
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I am voting against recommending V2 and I really like this quickstart !


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guruboolez
post Oct 3 2005, 13:51
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--preset insane is still working (legacy). I'd rather use -cbr 320 commandline. That's why I didn't mention --preset insane, but just "insane".
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VCSkier
post Oct 3 2005, 14:44
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i like this as the quickstart as well my only question, is this, is abr recommended for everything below -V6?


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guruboolez
post Oct 3 2005, 14:54
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QUOTE (VCSkier @ Oct 3 2005, 02:44 PM)
i like this as the quickstart as well  my only question, is this, is abr recommended for everything below -V6?
*

There are not enough tests to answer.
From my (small) experience, I'd use ABR. But there are maybe more experienced listeners than me.
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Donunus
post Oct 3 2005, 14:56
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For people with ipods that use mp3s, preset insane is not really insane because its the preset that doesn't skip. hehehe
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kwanbis
post Oct 3 2005, 15:49
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QUOTE (guruboolez @ Oct 3 2005, 12:22 PM)
What about this quickstart:


QUICKSTART


low bitrate (1CD DVD Rip, radio recording, mono encodings...): for inferior bitrate to 100 kbps, ABR is probably the best solution. Just use --abr xx (ex: --abr 80).

portable: -V6 (~115 kbps), -V5 (~130 kbps) or -V4 (~160 kbps) are recommended for this usage. -V6 produces average but decent quality, whereas -V4 should already be close to perceptual transparency.

(very) high quality: -V3 (~175 kbps), V2 (~190 kbps), V1 (~210 kbps) or V0 (~230 kbps). Transparent encodings. Audible difference among these presets exists but is really marginal.

[optional]
Best quality (archiving): cbr 320. This is the strongest setting for LAME MP3. Lowest risk of artefacts. But keep in mind that except really few situations quality is rarely better than for highest VBR profiles described previously. That's why cbr 320 is called "insane" and is not recommended for a simple listening purpose.

*

looks nice for me ... simple but explanatori


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Frank Bicking
post Oct 3 2005, 16:21
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Get rid of the colors.
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Jojo
post Oct 4 2005, 05:48
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QUOTE (shadowking @ Oct 3 2005, 04:50 AM)
I am voting against recommending V2 and I really like this quickstart !
*

I'm voting in favor for recommending V2.

QUOTE (Frank_Bicking @ Oct 3 2005, 07:21 AM)
Get rid of the colors.
*

I like the colors, makes it easier to read smile.gif


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Synthetic Soul
post Oct 4 2005, 08:49
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Can I suggest the text/formatting below?

The format is simple and easily transferred to the wiki (I personally believe that the thread should only point to the wiki, so there isn't duplicated information, but hey). I have used links to suggest where... um... links could be*. I have changed guruboolez's text slightly, I hope it still retains his intentions. It's only my suggestion anyway - mainly for a tasteful and consistent formatting. I find a lot of the colours difficult to read. Colours may be acceptable to distinguish headings, but reading a lot of text in orange is just painful.

One other note: if --cbr 320 is "not recommended" should it be in this recommendation? If the page is actually to be a summary of LAME's features then it certainly needs detailing - but I would suggest it maybe shouldn't be in the Quick Start if not recommended.


Quick Start

Low Bitrate : (S)VCD audio rip, radio or mono encoding, etc.

For very low bitrates, up to 100kbps, ABR is most often the best solution.
Use --abr xx (e.g. --abr 80).

Portable : background noise and low bitrate requirement

-V6 (~115 kbps), -V5 (~130 kbps) or -V4 (~160 kbps) are recommended for this use.
-V6 produces an acceptable quality, while -V4 should be close to perceptual transparency.

High Quality : home or quiet listening

-V3 (~175 kbps), -V2 (~190 kbps), -V1 (~210 kbps) or -V0 (~230 kbps) are recommended.
These settings will produce transparent encoding. Audible differences between these presets exist, but are extremely marginal.

Best Quality : archiving

--cbr 320. This is the strongest setting for LAME MP3, with the lowest risk of artifacts.
With the exception of a few situations, quality is rarely better than the highest VBR profiles described above. There is a reason that --cbr 320 is called "insane". It is not recommended.

--
* Either for the wiki, or in the thread - either pointing to wiki pages or other threads. We should be using links more so that noobs can jump from one place to another and have all their questions answered in one go.

Edit : added more links! Edit 2: Amended text following suggestions.

This post has been edited by Synthetic Soul: Oct 4 2005, 10:35


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guruboolez
post Oct 4 2005, 09:30
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I prefer your version smile.gif
It's better in my opinion to the current recommendations remaped as "Remarks":

QUOTE
The presets -V 0 , -V 1 , -V 2 with or without --vbr-new switch and of course -b 320 are considered to be transparent for a majority of people. (transparent = most people cannot distinguish the mp3 from the original in an ABX blindtest)
For high quality on portable MP3 players, you may use  -V 4 or  -V 5 (--vbr-new) (around 165 kbit/s, or around 128k).
-b 320 (or --preset insane): maximum quality possible, very high bitrate (always 320 kbps).
-V0 --vbr-new (or --preset fast extreme) exceptionally high quality, somewhat high bitrate,  allows faster encoding and a bit higher quality than normal -V 2 (--preset extreme) (typically 220270 kbps).
-V2 --vbr-new (or --preset fast standard) generally transparent preset to most people, almost indistinguishable from --preset extreme, good size/quality tradeoff, allows faster encoding and a bit higher quality than normal -V 2 (--preset standard) (typically 180240 kbps).
-V4 --vbr-new (or --preset fast medium) mostly transparent preset, extremely suitable for noisy environments and portable use, very good size/quality tradeoff (typically 110170 kbps).
-V 5 --vbr-new is a very good replacement for 128 kbit/s encodings, eg. portable usage in cars, noisy environments.


V1 or V3 are not even mentioned! The old --alt-preset system is maybe outdated, but the logical (--standard/extreme/medium and nothing between) is still haunting the thread. sad.gif
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stephanV
post Oct 4 2005, 09:55
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QUOTE (Synthetic Soul @ Oct 4 2005, 09:49 AM)
Low Bitrate : (S)VCD audio rip, radio or mono encoding, etc.

For inferior bitrates, up to 100kbps, ABR is most often the best solution.
Use --abr xx (e.g. --abr 80).

Maybe "inferior" could be replaced with a different word (just "low" I guess)? For me it has a very negative tone to it, which makes the recommendation more like a dissuasion.


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Madrigal
post Oct 4 2005, 10:26
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QUOTE (Synthetic Soul @ Oct 4 2005, 02:49 AM)
-V3 (~175 kbps), -V2 (~190 kbps), -V1 (~210 kbps) or -V0 (~230 kbps) are recommended.
These settings will produce transparent encoding.  Audible difference among these presets exists, but are extremely marginal.

Grammar:

Use either

"Audible difference ... exists, but is extremely marginal"

or

"Audible differences ... exist, but are extremely marginal"

Regards,
Madrigal
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