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2008 ripping/encoding general poll
What are your current choices for your own musical library?
What's your *main lossy* format of choice?
MP3 [ 681 ] ** [56.19%]
Ogg Vorbis [ 214 ] ** [17.66%]
AAC (MP4, M4A, AAC) [ 197 ] ** [16.25%]
MPC [ 46 ] ** [3.80%]
WMA Standard or PRO [ 3 ] ** [0.25%]
Atrac (any version) [ 2 ] ** [0.17%]
WavPack lossy [ 8 ] ** [0.66%]
LossyWAV + lossless [ 6 ] ** [0.50%]
other lossy format [ 0 ] ** [0.00%]
I don't use lossy AT ALL! [ 55 ] ** [4.54%]
What's your *main lossless* format of choice?
FLAC [ 795 ] ** [65.59%]
WavPack [ 176 ] ** [14.52%]
Monkey's Audio [ 52 ] ** [4.29%]
WMA Lossless [ 4 ] ** [0.33%]
TAK [ 54 ] ** [4.46%]
OptimFrog [ 2 ] ** [0.17%]
other lossless format [ 40 ] ** [3.30%]
I don't use lossless AT ALL! [ 89 ] ** [7.34%]
What's your favorite ripping mode {for your main, archive or most important library if you have several ones}?
one file per track [ 911 ] ** [75.17%]
one file per disc with cuesheet or chapters [ 164 ] ** [13.53%]
it depends: I mix both [ 137 ] ** [11.30%]
Total Votes: 1309
  
lextune
post Jan 9 2008, 22:42
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1. mp3

2. flac

3. One file per track

smile.gif


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singaiya
post Jan 10 2008, 07:23
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AAC
Tak
tracks
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Lu Tze
post Jan 11 2008, 23:56
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Lossy: Ogg Vorbis, because my mobile player supports it and it is just more efficient than MP3 (as well as AAC for >80kbps to my ears, but my player does not support AAC anyway), and the encoder is much faster as well.

Lossless: Monkey's Audio. FLAC compresses less good, and I see absolutely no advantage to compensate that.

Type: Per-Track. Per-CD turned out to be too much of a hassle, and with gapless playback Per-Track has no disadvantages I can think of anyway.

This post has been edited by Lu Tze: Jan 11 2008, 23:58
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chrisgeleven
post Jan 12 2008, 01:50
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I have decided for now my personal CD's will be in AAC 256kbps VBR encoded with iTunes. Online purchases will either be from iTunes Plus (DRM-free AAC) or Amazon's MP3 store (256kbps DRM-free MP3's), depending on price and selection.


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RandyOsbourne
post Jan 12 2008, 03:48
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QUOTE (Squeller @ Jan 1 2008, 14:23) *
As for lossless I used wavpack before, but now I encode anything to tak.
And I switched from mp3 to nero aac, all my devices support it.


Nero aac still currently has a bug, .m4a aac does not play on ipod shuffles...
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collector
post Jan 12 2008, 12:14
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MP3 V2, file per track to listen to; for normal use and DAP
Flac -6, image per disc for the archives, although I listen to them too via cue sheets.
Combination for classical albums: one flac per composition > all movements in one flac, seperate individual movements also playable via cuesheet.
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JeanLuc
post Jan 13 2008, 01:03
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Lossy:

I don't do MP3 anymore for my personal archival needs (but I sometimes need MP3 for my car stereo or my girlfriend) ... since I have two iPods, I mostly use the Nero AAC encoder with foobar2000 to convert parts of my flac library to M4A. I still have lots of Lame MP3 files but I don't see myself adding new MP3 to my music collection. I use the Nero AAC encoder between 0.45 and 0.55 for transparent quality. I also bought some iTunes+ tracks from ITMS and I like the idea of high-quality and DRM-free content that can be bought from online stores ...

Lossless:

FLAC all the way ...

Ripping (archiving):

I rip the disc to HDD first as a single image & cue ... thanks to the new EAC version, I can use accuraterip for that, too. Afterwards, I mount the image with an older DaemonTools version (3.46 without SPTD) and create single files and noncompliant cuesheets for my flac library and everything else I need off that disc (like lossy tracks).

QUOTE (RandyOsbourne @ Jan 12 2008, 03:48) *
Nero aac still currently has a bug, .m4a aac does not play on ipod shuffles...


seriously ... that does not sound like a Nero AAC encoder bug to me ...


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crystal-clear
post Jan 13 2008, 14:07
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I use Wavpack for lossless. I'm curious why it is losing its user? unsure.gif It's better than FLAC in every ways (faster, smaller file size, etc), well, except for hardware compatibility, but I transcode them to MP3 for casual listening so it's not a problem to me wink.gif
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twostar
post Jan 13 2008, 18:38
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based on this, flac's only weaknesses are:
1. lack of hybrid/lossy mode
2. average compression
3. and slightly above average encoding speed

my take on flac's continued success: as HDs continue to grow, weakness number 2 will be less of a factor (except for very large audio collections). and with modern cpus encoding speed is already not a factor. also most people would use a lossy codec for use with their DAPs, so a hybrid/lossy mode is not a must have feature.

and it doesn't hurt that flac is the most compatible lossless format.
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greynol
post Jan 13 2008, 21:21
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QUOTE (twostar @ Jan 13 2008, 09:38) *
flac's only weaknesses are:
I realize you're quoting from the wiki, but...

>2. average compression
Most of the data I've seen squarely places flac at below average compression when compared WavPack, Monkey's Audio and TAK. For rock, pop, hip-hop and just about any other genre that is typically mastered with compression, flac usually places dead last. For jazz, classical and/or older recordings with less compression flac certainly fares better. As they say, your mileage may vary.

>3. and slightly above average encoding speed
Ranking the encoding speed without specifying the level of compression is utterly meaningless.

QUOTE (twostar @ Jan 13 2008, 09:38) *
and it doesn't hurt that flac is the most compatible lossless format.
I think you're on to something here. wink.gif


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twostar
post Jan 13 2008, 22:02
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QUOTE (greynol @ Jan 14 2008, 04:21) *
>3. and slightly above average encoding speed
Ranking the encoding speed without specifying the level of compression is utterly meaningless.

on an aging athlon xp 2400, flac encodes at 19x here which is a well below average. that still should be fast enough for most people.

--adverb edit

This post has been edited by twostar: Jan 13 2008, 22:33
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greynol
post Jan 13 2008, 22:23
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QUOTE (twostar @ Jan 13 2008, 13:02) *
on an aging athlon xp 2400, flac encodes at 19x here which is a bit below average.

Based on that data, 19x is well below average.

The following all give better compression than flac -8:
  • WavPack -h @43x
  • MAC Fast @52x
  • Tak -p0 @110x


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joeshrubbery
post Jan 13 2008, 23:43
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QUOTE (greynol @ Jan 13 2008, 17:23) *
QUOTE (twostar @ Jan 13 2008, 13:02) *
on an aging athlon xp 2400, flac encodes at 19x here which is a bit below average.

Based on that data, 19x is well below average.

The following all give better compression than flac -8:
  • WavPack -h @43x
  • MAC Fast @52x
  • Tak -p0 @110x



I call shenanigans here, if you're gonna compare speeds don't be comparing FLACs slowest high compression settings with TAKs fastest low compression settings, et al.

Either TAK -p5m vs. FLAC -8 or TAK -p0 vs. FLAC -0 would be a fair speed test. Don't know what the settings should be for the other two encoders off the top of my head... been too long since I last used either.

This post has been edited by joeshrubbery: Jan 13 2008, 23:52
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greynol
post Jan 13 2008, 23:47
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QUOTE (joeshrubbery @ Jan 13 2008, 14:43) *
I call shenanigans here, if you're gonna compare speeds don't be comparing FLACs slowest settings with TAKs fastest, et al.

QUOTE (greynol @ Jan 13 2008, 12:21) *
Ranking the encoding speed without specifying the level of compression is utterly meaningless.

The issue I was addressing concerned flac's placement regarding encoding speed and compression.

QUOTE (greynol @ Jan 13 2008, 17:23) *
The following all give better compression than flac -8:


This post has been edited by greynol: Jan 13 2008, 23:50


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Cosmo
post Jan 13 2008, 23:51
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101

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greynol
post Jan 13 2008, 23:56
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Then lets see how the rest perform near 65.721%!
  • Tak -p0 @110x
  • WavPack @64x
  • flac -5 @53x
  • Monkey's Audio Fast @52x
At these settings, TAK, WavPack and MAC still produce smaller files than flac -5.

Now once you use flac -0, things do indeed change, but it seems most people around here don't use -0...
http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index....showtopic=58731

The vast majority of people taking that poll indicate that they use -8. Certainly it may be fast enough, but it isn't anywhere near "average" or "above average". This is the only point I'm trying to make.

This post has been edited by greynol: Jan 15 2008, 19:21


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jcoalson
post Jan 14 2008, 00:16
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if you're talking about why people choose a codec, I doubt that matters. all encoders are fast enough. encoding is done once. flac is fastest where it matters most (decoding). being below average in compression is not a big deal when all codecs are within a few % of each other. I address all that here. for a visual, here's a graph of synthetic soul's data (encoding speed v. compression ratio) without exaggerating the scale to highlight small differences:

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Curtor
post Jan 14 2008, 00:22
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What's really interesting to me based on this poll, is that FLAC is more dominant in the lossless category than MP3 is in the lossy one! That seems like quite a significant milestone considering the true dominance of MP3.
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jcoalson
post Jan 14 2008, 00:30
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p.s. here's the decoding side:
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greynol
post Jan 14 2008, 00:34
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QUOTE (jcoalson @ Jan 13 2008, 15:16) *
being below average in compression is not a big deal when all codecs are within a few % of each other.
I totally agree with you. The post that got me started said the compression was average, not below average.

QUOTE (jcoalson @ Jan 13 2008, 15:16) *
flac is fastest where it matters most (decoding)
This really depends on why someone chooses to use lossless compression, but I do concede that this is a very popular reason, as is compatibilty...
http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index....showtopic=51082

This post has been edited by greynol: Jan 14 2008, 01:16


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valnar
post Jan 14 2008, 00:53
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I rip with EAC + R.E.A.C.T. and Arcue all my CD's to FLAC image + Cue sheet. One single file so I can recreate the original CD. (I'm actually only 75% done with my collection as of now. I started over 6 months ago).

I only rip to MP3 as needed from those FLAC files, which is rare since I don't have a portable music player. I listen to most of my music at home, or take the original CD's with me in the car on any given day or mood.

Robert
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IgorC
post Jan 14 2008, 20:58
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QUOTE (jcoalson @ Jan 13 2008, 15:30) *
p.s. here's the decoding side:


What version of TAK it was? There is outdated version of TAK 1.0.1 http://flac.sourceforge.net/comparison.html
Last TAK 1.0.3 has higher decoding speed. And 1.0.4 decoder will be still faster.
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greynol
post Jan 14 2008, 21:19
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flac has the ability to decode without checking the md5 checksum, and I believe this is what tipped the scales. If the numbers didn't reflect this option then the differences should be more pronounced.

The graphs were from Synthetic Soul's data, and FWIW, the it primarily focuses on rock.

EDIT: From the information on his site, Synthetic Soul used TAK 1.0.2b and flac 1.2.1. Josh has included a link to data that includes flac decoding speeds without using the md5 checksum below:

This post has been edited by greynol: Jan 15 2008, 19:18


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jcoalson
post Jan 14 2008, 21:29
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his current data is for tak 1.0.2b. tak is fast but doesn't compute md5. the flac data is the one with MD5 enabled. with MD5 disabled (as typical in playback) flac is faster still.

http://www.synthetic-soul.co.uk/comparison...esc=0&All=1
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greynol
post Jan 14 2008, 21:39
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>tak is fast but doesn't compute md5.

TAK uses a checksum for each frame.


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