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2007 ripping/encoding general poll
What are your current choices for your own musical library?
What's your *main lossy* format of choice?
MP3 [ 501 ] ** [54.22%]
Ogg Vorbis [ 211 ] ** [22.84%]
AAC [ 118 ] ** [12.77%]
MPC [ 41 ] ** [4.44%]
WMA Standard [ 5 ] ** [0.54%]
WMA Pro [ 3 ] ** [0.32%]
Atrac (any version) [ 4 ] ** [0.43%]
Other / I don't use lossy AT ALL! [ 41 ] ** [4.44%]
What's your *main lossless* format of choice?
FLAC [ 549 ] ** [59.42%]
WavPack [ 203 ] ** [21.97%]
Monkey's Audio [ 43 ] ** [4.65%]
Apple Lossless [ 25 ] ** [2.71%]
OptimFrog [ 2 ] ** [0.22%]
WMA Lossless [ 13 ] ** [1.41%]
TAK [ 7 ] ** [0.76%]
Other / I don't use lossless AT ALL! [ 82 ] ** [8.87%]
What's your favorite ripping mode {for your main or archive library if you have several ones}?
one file per track [ 691 ] ** [74.78%]
one file per disc with cuesheet or chapters [ 138 ] ** [14.94%]
it depends: I mix both [ 95 ] ** [10.28%]
Total Votes: 1025
  
Řyvin Eikeland
post Feb 13 2007, 12:44
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I use flac and mp3.
I like the fact that both are without any sort of drm and that they are not controlled by apple, sony or microsoft (or any other big player). I also like the fact that they are the codecs with the best hardware support. MP3 has defined itself as the defacto standard for lossy compression. No manufacturer will release a portable player that does not support mp3. Hopefully, the same will be true for one of the open source lossless codecs in the future. Currently, my money is on FLAC, as it has the best hardware support. If this changes in the future, I might change to wavpack or something else.

I want lossless audio in my pocket, in my living room, in my car and in my kitchen. I also want lossless audio available in every store. I want to be able to copy my songs to all my different players with no hassle.

Řyvin
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Martin H
post Feb 13 2007, 18:50
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I have personally switched to using WavPack(-hm) images with embedded cuesheets/eaclogs for archiving and LAME MP3 track files(-V5 --vbr-new) for playback(i don't use lossless for playback, because i only have a 40GB harddrive, and so i burn the lossless images to TY DVD+R's when they have been ripped and converted to MP3 track files for playback), and that this will be the final decision for me and that i will not change away from this ever again smile.gif (atleast for WavPack i'm 100% certain about that smile.gif)

CU, Martin.
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Julien
post Feb 13 2007, 18:56
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I have voted Wavpack again this year. The points in its favour are not only its impressive encoding speed but also the fact that it's able to encode 32b float files and will preserve the non standard RIFF sub-chunks. It's definitely a plus when backinp up my own samples(that often contain loop points and other kinds of information) and audio tracks. I really hope this format will get even more attention this year for it's really unbeatable for music makers.
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Lashiec
post Feb 13 2007, 20:06
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Encoding to FLAC for archiving, and to Vorbis for general use (both at the computer and with my imaginary iPod smile.gif ). With big HDDs these days, I could use only FLAC, but I prefer to have this under lock and key, and save space at the same time, in case I need the extra space. I'm not thinking in changing the compressors for a time, maybe FLAC is TAK is good enough.

As for the settings, -6 for FLAC (improved compression and the drop in encoding time is small) and -6 for Vorbis too, which is quite good quality at a fair size. I used -8 in the past, but I realized that it was a bit too much. Also, I'm encoding track by track, because it's the only way to preserve all the custom tags I add to the files in the post-encoding phase (at least the most practical way)
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sPeziFisH
post Feb 13 2007, 21:48
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I'm going with:
lossy: mp3, to interchange with friends
lossless: wavpack (my evolution: monkey -> FLAC -> wavpack); lossless only for temporary storage
ripping: album -> one file per track using foobar, just to be able to take (handle, share) any track without further processing
ph34r.gif

for parties: cool guys always have cool music on discs (a la carte), operating with playlist-and-files is for teens - but still the right choice for home/portable-listening
(opinion my change with regard to professional equipment)

This post has been edited by sPeziFisH: Feb 13 2007, 21:59
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jcoalson
post Feb 13 2007, 22:14
Post #131


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the comments don't seem to match the graphs... for whatever reason (maybe related to advocacy), I think it's interesting. my quick count about what people explicitly said in comments that they used:

CODE
27/68 FLAC           40%
27/68 WavPack        40%
9/68 Monkey's audio  13%
4/68 ALAC             6%
1/68 OptimFROG        1%
0/68 WMA lossless
0/68 Tak
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bryant
post Feb 13 2007, 22:50
Post #132


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QUOTE (jcoalson @ Feb 13 2007, 13:14) *
the comments don't seem to match the graphs... for whatever reason (maybe related to advocacy), I think it's interesting. my quick count about what people explicitly said in comments that they used:

CODE
27/68 FLAC           40%
27/68 WavPack        40%
9/68 Monkey's audio  13%
4/68 ALAC             6%
1/68 OptimFROG        1%
0/68 WMA lossless
0/68 Tak

I imagine that people are more likely to make a comment if they are not voting for the most popular choices. It would be interesting to see of the same thing applied to MP3.
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TCM
post Feb 26 2007, 06:04
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i use flac over wavpack because it feels better designed. this includes details such as embedding the md5 sum per default instead of having a flag for it that's off per default. also, wavpack is more a compressed wav than an independent audio format. if i had any use for custom riff chunks, i might be using wavpack instead.

for lossy, i chose none, although that might change if i ever decide to get a portable player. if i do that, flac's faster decoding also comes into play, as i would be transcoding albums as needed.

for listening at the pc, i use flac with complete images and cue sheets, serving as both a 1:1 archive as well as a direct access format.
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SebastianG
post Feb 26 2007, 11:54
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I didn't vote / here's my comment:

In the lossy segment no format is clearly superior to all others, IMO. I tend to use MP3 for compatibility although I own a portable that can play Vorbis. I'd like to use AAC in the future once I get a portable player with AAC support because I consider its design to be better than Vorbis and MP3 -- from a technical point of view. But this isn't as important as other features I expect from a good portable player so I'm gonna stick with my rockboxed H120 unit until it dies.

I don't use lossless formats a lot. I don't back up CDs losslessly. I mainly rip music to be able to listen to it and I like the files to be small. Though, I purchased two losslessly encoded albums (flac) to have at least one high quality version. WavPack seems like a good overall solution. I'd make more use of it if I cared more about lossless formats.

Edit: I forgot. Here's my take on the last question: It's single track files for me even for DJ mixes and other stuff with non-silent track transitions. Why? Well, MP3 can be played back seamlessly with proper players but also because I've at least one HQ version (Flac, WavPack or CDDA) I can always rerip/transcode in case I need something to play back seamlessly on other devices...

Cheers!
SG

This post has been edited by SebastianG: Feb 26 2007, 13:28
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halb27
post Feb 26 2007, 12:59
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QUOTE (SebastianG @ Feb 26 2007, 12:54) *
...
I'd like to use AAC in the future once I get a portable player with AAC support...

You can use AAC with current Rockbox version on your H120 if you don't care much that battery will run down earlier.
I got aware of the AAC playing ability last week but it seems to be possible since last November.
I've tried it (using current Nero CLI encoder) on my H140 and it's great. I consider using it in practice but I'm not sure yet. Technically speaking and with regard to supposed future hardware support I also favor AAC. mp3 however has some practical advantages, and it can produce very high quality too.

This post has been edited by halb27: Feb 26 2007, 13:00


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SebastianG
post Feb 26 2007, 13:27
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Last time I checked it didn't play AAC in real-time. Also, I've been told that the Rockbox firmware doesn't use variable clock rates on the H1xx yet (==> Vorbis/AAC playback shouldn't drain the battery more). But maybe this has changed. I gotta check this ...

edit: typos

This post has been edited by SebastianG: Feb 26 2007, 13:34
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Remedial Sound
post Feb 26 2007, 15:08
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QUOTE (TCM @ Feb 26 2007, 00:04) *
also, wavpack is more a compressed wav than an independent audio format.

What are you basing this on, it's name? tongue.gif WavPack is a pretty robust lossless format, check the comparison table.
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Martin H
post Feb 26 2007, 18:17
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QUOTE (TCM @ Feb 26 2007, 06:04) *
also, wavpack is more a compressed wav than an independent audio format.

A relevant quote from David Bryant about this issue :
QUOTE
This idea that WavPack and FLAC are fundamentally different because one compresses files and the other compresses audio is no longer true. The current native WavPack format is not tied to a particular audio file format. It is the case that the command-line compressor only accepts wav files and the unpacker only generates wav files (or raw audio data), but this is because not a single person has ever asked for any other format. I could easily add other formats without breaking anything.

I have dedicated two metadata field ids for storing images of the RIFF data so that a wav file can be perfectly recreated (one is for RIFF data that comes after the audio). But these fields are not required to interpret the audio information, are ignored by plugins (except Audition which uses them), and do not restrict the format in any way. A similar mechanism could be added to FLAC so that it too could, if desired, make perfect copies of wav files. Certainly this would not hobble the format or detract in any way; it would simply be an additional feature. (I am, of course, not suggesting this be added to FLAC. Given the enormous popularity of FLAC, I need every niche I can find! smile.gif )

[...]

Obviously nobody would complain if an MP3 encoder discarded RIFF data. However, because archiving is one of their primary uses, I believe that lossless audio compressors are different. That extra RIFF information is part of the archive, and the fact that FLAC discards those unknown subchunks simply makes it unusable for some (albeit rare) applications. The fact that WavPack saves them does not similarly make it unusable for any current or future application (except maybe for the guy that specifically wanted them discarded, for whom I have now provided an option).

Source : http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index....st&p=340767
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fairyliquidizer
post Feb 26 2007, 22:18
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AAC as Lossy is just for my iPod and iTunes is a natural choice for the iPod and AAC is better than the nasty MP3 encoder in iTunes.

MP3 would be my codec of choice for lossy were it not for iTunes integration as MP3 is universal. LAME rocks!

FLAC is my lossless choice which I use to both archive and play on my Squeezebox. Perhaps the greatest inventions since Penicillin! Better still I'm not allergic to Penicillin.

Fairy


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quas
post Feb 26 2007, 22:57
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QUOTE (SebastianG @ Feb 26 2007, 07:27) *
Last time I checked it didn't play AAC in real-time. Also, I've been told that the Rockbox firmware doesn't use variable clock rates on the H1xx yet (==> Vorbis/AAC playback shouldn't drain the battery more).

I don't think AAC playback has been completely optimized yet, but Rockbox was able to play the small sample of files I tried recently. Officially, it is supposed to play AAC realtime on iRiver targets:
http://www.rockbox.org/twiki/bin/view/Main...#Current_status

Also, I'm pretty sure that Rockbox supports CPU boosting on the H100 players. I have an H320, which uses the same Coldfire CPU, and it's definitely boosting the CPU when required. You can test this by going to the menu, then Info > Debug > View audio thread. Boost ratio was around 70% for the AAC file I tried.
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Mirage2k
post Mar 4 2007, 18:43
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Ripping on an Apple PowerBook here, so my main lossless codec which I use for "archive" purposes is Apple Lossless, which I store on an external hard drive and back-up to DVD-R. All of my listening is done with LAME MP3s.

I initially had some concerns about using ALAC as a long-term lossless format, but, especially now that Mac users have Max, I figure I can always batch convert to FLAC if I need to.
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Kim_C
post Mar 15 2007, 19:26
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Ogg Vorbis & Flac. Since i got into lossy compression somewhere in 1999/2000 (damn it's been a long time!) and days of "128 kbs MP3 is cd-quality" i have wanted to compress my music so that 1 minute music would result in about 1 mb file and it would be qualitywise as close to original audio as possible. It felt like a good size/quality ratio and i knew that it would be someday possible with mp3's successor AAC being developed.

But i never seriously thought that Ogg Vorbis would someday achieve same level of quality with Xiph's development speed.. luckily Aoyumi came along and made Vorbis competive against AAC and others with his incredible tunings. I am a Open Source fan and i think Ogg Vorbis is a great project with lots of potential. It's been my preferred format and i want to use and support it everywhere i can.

Nowdays Vorbis & AAC give great quality in even lower bitrates and thanks to LAME even mp3 is very much transparent to me, as last 128kbs test showed which i did take part and couldn't abx any of them except low anchor! But i use -q 4.25 because to me 1 to 1 (with other formats too) is practical ratio with small files and very much transparent quality for listening and general archiving.

For archiving important songs or general lossless use i use FLAC. It's actively developed, well supported in hardware & software and all around good lossless format.

However, Wavpack is very interesting and i've been thinking to use it on my Rockboxed iHP-120. I understand that Wavpack lossy gives good quality on 256-300 kbs range and lossy files use less cpu power for decoding. It would be cool to archive my cd's to harddrive in lossless wavpack and encode them in lossy for my mp3-player and have more playing time from battery than with mp3 and other formats! Even better if Squeezebox and others would support Wavpack, but unfortunately not yet...

This post has been edited by Kim_C: Mar 15 2007, 19:29
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Zarggg
post Mar 22 2007, 03:20
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I must qualify my vote.

I use Ogg Vorbis for my computer.
Since I use a vanilla iPod, I have been using 128kb/s CBR AAC lately for that. I used to use LAME -V4.
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Dr. Oviri
post Mar 22 2007, 03:42
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Mp3 with Lame preset R3Mix (with CD cover and Unsynced Lyrics) for my player tongue.gif

Monkey's Audio ExtraHigh

One file per track wink.gif
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beto
post Mar 22 2007, 14:57
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QUOTE (Dr. Oviri @ Mar 21 2007, 23:42) *
Mp3 with Lame preset R3Mix (with CD cover and Unsynced Lyrics) for my player tongue.gif


You are outdated. tongue.gif


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Agent69
post Mar 22 2007, 17:48
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I use Flac and an external cue sheet.

I use Foobar as a player and I expect that I will eventually use Foobar to extract and encode individual files for my iPod Shuffle as well; once I have the time to figure out how to make Foobar do it.
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fairyliquidizer
post Mar 27 2007, 15:19
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QUOTE (Dr. Oviri @ Mar 21 2007, 18:42) *
Mp3 with Lame preset R3Mix (with CD cover and Unsynced Lyrics) for my player tongue.gif


R3Mix, LMFAO! biggrin.gif Dude, the Viet Cong won, the 20th century is over, and R3Mix is history. What version of LAME are you using?


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aabxx
post May 16 2007, 02:33
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Vorbis, because:
- It's proven over a long time now that it's one of the best quality-wise, at every bitrate.
- Flexible for metadata
- It's open source, gratis and patent-free. And suits my linux very well thankyou smile.gif
- It has the coolest name damnit... ! crying.gif
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jcoalson
post May 18 2007, 01:24
Post #149


FLAC Developer


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QUOTE (jcoalson @ Feb 13 2007, 16:14) *
the comments don't seem to match the graphs... for whatever reason (maybe related to advocacy), I think it's interesting. (...)

lately I've been trying to get a better idea of lossless codec usage and I have some stats that may be interesting. what they say exactly is more open to interpretation but I think one thing that seems clear is that the polls here don't extrapolate to the outside world (nothing wrong with that BTW).

(data gathered some time througout apr/may 2007, also included some mp3-related stats for some perspective)

answers.yahoo.com results for query:
CODE
: 42298 'mp3'
:   102 'flac'
:     9 'shn'
:     8 'apple lossless'
:     0 'alac'
:     1 'wavpack'
:     1 'wavepack'
:     1 'wma lossless'
:     0 'wmal'
:     0 'optimfrog'


del.icio.us results for tag:
CODE
: 182628 'mp3'
:   2228 'flac'
:    301 'shn'
:    141 'alac'
:     95 'wavpack'


inlinks (via siteexplorer.yahoo.com)
CODE
:  33068   flac.sourceforge.net + flac.sf.net (doesn't include sourceforge.net/projects/flac)
:   8619   www.monkeysaudio.com + monkeysaudio.com
:   5248   www.wavpack.com + wavpack.com
:   2925   www.true-audio.com + true-audio.com (tta)
:   1843   www.losslessaudio.org + losslessaudio.org (ofr)
:   1335   www.lossless-audio.com + lossless-audio.com (la)


google hits for query: (approximate)
CODE
:  662000000 'mp3'
:    8670000 'flac'
:    2330000 'shn'
:    2090000 'monkeys audio'
:    1590000 'alac'
:     730000 '"apple lossless"'
:     714000 'wavpack'
:     109000 'optimfrog'
:     102000 '"wma lossless"'


site traffic/month (I only have sourceforge estimates for my site, others I got from trafficestimate.com 30-day estimates which could be wildly wrong)
CODE
: ~2000000 flac.sourceforge.net (~2M hits/month  700K pageviews/mo  ? project page hits/mo  110K downloads/mo)
:   100400 www.monkeysaudio.com
:    16100 www.wavpack.com
:    11700 www.true-audio.com (TTA)

(monkeysaudio.com may be inflated since spammers have assaulted the forums)

lossless-only web search query volume estimate
CODE
: 80%  FLAC-related ('flac' 'free lossless audio codec' etc)
: 13%  Shorten-related ('shn', not 'shorten' because of too many false positives)
:  3%  ALAC-related ('alac' 'apple lossless' etc)
:  2%  APE-related ('monkey's audio' etc, not 'ape' because of too many false positives)
:  1%  WMAL-related ('wmal' 'wma lossless' etc)
:  1%  WV related ('wavpack' 'wavepack' 'wavepak' etc)
: ~0%  OptimFROG-related ('optimfrog' 'ofr' etc)


edit: typos, clarity

This post has been edited by jcoalson: May 18 2007, 01:27
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adam917
post Jul 13 2007, 21:18
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I use Exact Audio Copy for ripping, and I now prefer to rip track-by-track with the correct offset, the 'non-compliant' Cuesheet, Secure rip, Log, and 'Test & Copy'.

For lossless audio, I use FLAC at -8 -V.

For lossy audio, I prefer Ogg Vorbis after over 5 years of using MP3 for a number of reasons, such as it being a gapless format, as well as native VBR and excellent tagging capabilities (this works great with Foobar2000).
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