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Monkey's Audio 4.02 final
IgorC
post Jan 20 2009, 06:51
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http://www.monkeysaudio.com/index.html


Version 4.02 (January 19, 2009)

1. NEW: Includes Directshow filter for decoding APE files in any DirectShow compatible player like Windows Media Player, Zoom, etc.
2. Fixed: Corrupt APE files could cause decoder crashes in rare cases.
3. Changed: Updated builder that gets better compression, making for a smaller download.
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Alexxander
post Jan 20 2009, 15:03
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Still no comments huh.gif

So Monkey's audio isn't dead. Is v4.02 the last convulsion?
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kwanbis
post Jan 20 2009, 15:22
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QUOTE (Alexxander @ Jan 20 2009, 14:03) *
Still no comments huh.gif

apparently there is not much interest in ape


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Neasden
post Jan 20 2009, 15:46
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Four major factors:
- Extremely slow seek (very very painful).
- Speed compression is slow.
- Source code release delayed eternally. Just sometime ago I heard it was released.
- Extremely good competitors: WavPack, FLAC and TAK. (The latter achieving basically same APE compression).

Note to TAK: learn from APE's failure for not releasing the decoder source in time.
I don't mind TAK being closed source, but it's essential for its life that it can be decoded anywhere, by anything, anytime.

This post has been edited by Neasden: Jan 20 2009, 15:46
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Bugs.Bunny
post Jan 20 2009, 18:03
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That's great news! smile.gif

In my personal opinion I don't see any reason why I shoud use FLAC instead of Monkeys Audio when looking at these figures from synthetic soul's lossless comparioson:
CODE
Encoder Setting               Original    Compressed    Duration    Compression    Time        Rate    Time        Rate
Monkey's Audio Extra High  2030.59 MiB    1280.54 MiB    03:18:21.240    63.062%    00:09:18    21x    00:09:30    21x
TAK -p4m                   2030.59 MiB    1290.33 MiB    03:18:21.240    63.544%    00:14:01    14x    00:01:54    104x
FLAC -8 -Ax2               2030.59 MiB    1328.08 MiB    03:18:21.240    65.404%    00:16:39    12x    00:01:35    125x

Monkeys has the highest compression amongst these three codecs with the highest compression speed of the three. The application works flawlessly - I'm compressing using 4 threads so the compression is very fast. I use Monkeys for backup and also use it for playback on my Media Center PC - MediaPortal software plays back Monkeys audio natively without the need to install any codec. On mobile devices I use mp3 anyway. I can always verify the integity of the files because Monkeys stores the md5 checksum.
Well TAK would be an alternative (only 0,5% less compression) but due the closed source and the limited support in different playback software it is not an option for the moment.
Decompression speed does not matter for me nor do I have problems with seeking. So for me personally it's my lossless codec of choise. I do not understand all the hype about FLAC.
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greynol
post Jan 20 2009, 19:06
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QUOTE (Neasden @ Jan 20 2009, 06:46) *
- Extremely slow seek (very very painful).
Depends on the compression level.
QUOTE
- Speed compression is slow.
Compared to what? As an example, MAC -c1000 typically provides better compression than flac -8 and encodes nearly three times more quickly. Without establishing some type of basis for comparison by taking compression level into account, your statement is meaningless.
QUOTE
- Source code release delayed eternally. Just sometime ago I heard it was released.
The source has been available for a few years now, just not in a way that complies with general public licensing. Matt wants his code to be completely free.


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Neasden
post Jan 20 2009, 19:08
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Hype about FLAC?
- Open Source since its birth.
- Until here the predominat lossless format with more hardware support.
- Cross-platform since day 0.
- MD5 Calculations.
- You name it!

@greynol:
1) High & Insane
2) Compared to TAK
3) I think it's too late for Matt to make the way he wants (competitors will storm APE away).

This post has been edited by Neasden: Jan 20 2009, 19:13
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greynol
post Jan 20 2009, 19:11
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Let's refrain from starting the usual petty flame war over lossless codecs.


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Gow
post Jan 20 2009, 19:13
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Nice, a new release from an old lossless mainstay, Monkey's Audio. Going to test it out and probably use it here or there like I do other lossless codecs.

This post has been edited by Gow: Jan 20 2009, 19:13


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memomai
post Jan 20 2009, 20:26
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Is it right that the codec itself is still ver 3.99? foobar tells me so.

If not, please tell me that I'm the dummiest person ever (Greynol you have permission ;-) )


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Keykey
post Jan 20 2009, 20:38
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I compressed a file and yes, Foobar shows 3.99.

The codec is still very good at what it does so I never understood that "war".
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greynol
post Jan 20 2009, 20:48
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4.02 is just the GUI. The codec is still the same.


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rt87
post Jan 21 2009, 00:11
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QUOTE (greynol @ Jan 21 2009, 03:48) *
4.02 is just the GUI. The codec is still the same.

decoders have small update which change version number from 3.9.9.0 to 3.9.9.1. wink.gif


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Curtor
post Jan 21 2009, 00:33
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Welcome back to the king smile.gif It's nice to see that the project is still breathing... albeit with slow and shallow gasps.

My one question: The 4.01 release included a CoolEdit/Adobe plugin that just crashed and completely failed to work. Has this been fixed?

EDIT: Never mind, I couldn't resist checking myself, haha. The plugin remains as useless as it was before. As soon as you try to access the options for saving an APE file, it crashes the whole application (both CoolEdit and Audition). Since this has been acknowledged but hasn't been addressed for 2 years, I am now content to move on from Monkey's Audio sadly. It was once a great application but it doesn't seem to care about supporting its user-base.

This post has been edited by Curtor: Jan 21 2009, 00:48
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jcoalson
post Jan 21 2009, 07:21
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QUOTE (greynol @ Jan 20 2009, 13:06) *
The source has been available for a few years now, just not in a way that complies with general public licensing. Matt wants his code to be completely free.

public domain would be completely free. bsd is the next closest as a license. the ape license is somewhere between that and lgpl/mpl

QUOTE (Neasden @ Jan 20 2009, 09:46) *
Note to TAK: learn from APE's failure for not releasing the decoder source in time.
I don't mind TAK being closed source, but it's essential for its life that it can be decoded anywhere, by anything, anytime.

too late I think. once open source, anything good in tak can be put into flac easier than flac can be replaced with tak.

the sequence of events with tak and ape is practically identical, right down to the timeline. my experience with ape is why I suggested yalac techniques merge with flac in the beginning (2.5yrs ago).
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Synthetic Soul
post Jan 21 2009, 18:25
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QUOTE (jcoalson @ Jan 21 2009, 06:21) *
too late I think. once open source, anything good in tak can be put into flac easier than flac can be replaced with tak.

the sequence of events with tak and ape is practically identical, right down to the timeline. my experience with ape is why I suggested yalac techniques merge with flac in the beginning (2.5yrs ago).
Is there no room for support of more than one codec? I totally agree that any other codec has an impossible task to usurp FLAC as the most popular lossless codec; however the thought that it is too late for TAK to gain any hardware support solely because FLAC is already available is a little daunting. Open source or not, it's nice to have a little competition. Wavpack seems to be increasing its hardware support all the time.

This may need to be moved to a new thread. smile.gif


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Alexxander
post Jan 21 2009, 22:12
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And we're talking about lossless codecs: converting to an other format is very easy and fast and no information is lost. If tomorrow a new lossless codec shows up with similar features as FLAC, Wavpack or TAK but for example with a compression of more than 50% and easy to implement in hardware then the market share distribution can change very fast.

This post has been edited by Alexxander: Jan 21 2009, 22:15
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jcoalson
post Jan 21 2009, 23:34
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ape is already the #2 codec with hardware support (some modes) due to chinese portables, way ahead of wavpack. tak could also achieve the same thing in a niche or eat into ape's niche; that's fine. and on PCs there is a lot more room for alternatives.

but we have to be careful what we wish for. due to inherent features of physical, breakable, brickable, returnable electronic products with short design cycles, the mainstream market has I think room for at most one non-proprietary lossless codec. rally behind one and we'll probably get it. fraction into ape/tak/shn/wtflolbbq and we'll get nothing; we'll be stuck with wmal or something. we're not going to get another chance at this. flac has the momentum and is still the only codec that is suitable for mainstream use (archival+playback+distribution) for many reasons which I've written about before. the best the alternatives can offer is a few percent compression, hardly a reason to try and jump ship.

QUOTE (Alexxander @ Jan 21 2009, 16:12) *
If tomorrow a new lossless codec shows up with similar features as FLAC, Wavpack or TAK but for example with a compression of more than 50% and easy to implement in hardware then the market share distribution can change very fast.

if you mean 2x the compression of the current state of the art, no such codec is possible, and even then it would not be a fast transition. mp3 was around many years before it became ubiquitous in devices.
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valnar
post Jan 21 2009, 23:54
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QUOTE (Bugs.Bunny @ Jan 20 2009, 09:03) *
That's great news! smile.gif

In my personal opinion I don't see any reason why I shoud use FLAC instead of Monkeys Audio when looking at these figures from synthetic soul's lossless comparioson:


Wow. I don't see a reason to use Monkeys audio! wink.gif It's about as proprietary as you can get. Even Microsoft invented formats have more support. I can play FLAC files on my iPod with Rockbox and it's supported natively on my Sage HD extender. Any hardware support outside of PC's = Good.

Low CPU usage for decompression is worth the few extra points lost of compression.
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greynol
post Jan 21 2009, 23:58
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QUOTE (valnar @ Jan 21 2009, 14:54) *
It's about as proprietary as you can get.
http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index....st&p=545782
http://etree.org/shnutils/shntool/

...and even though it sucks when it comes to hardware decoding because it's a symmetric codec:
http://www.rockbox.org/twiki/bin/view/Main...decMonkeysAudio

This post has been edited by greynol: Jan 22 2009, 00:10


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valnar
post Jan 22 2009, 00:51
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Well, I still beg to differ. MP3 support is widespread because it works on more than PC's. If it weren't for MP3's, the portable music player revolution may not have happened. Playing WAV and VOC files didn't do it - it was MP3.

FLAC is gaining the same kind of respect, along with AAC. I'm glad Rockbox supports it sort-of, but it still is very CPU intensive.

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greynol
post Jan 22 2009, 01:12
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http://www.ciao.com/Cowon_iAUDIO_F2__10061549

http://www.macupdate.com/info.php/id/14246/xact
http://tmkk.hp.infoseek.co.jp/xld/index_e.html
http://sbooth.org/Max/
http://sbooth.org/Play/
http://www.voxapp.net/

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LANjackal
post Jan 22 2009, 04:55
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I still use MAC for several reasons:

1) None of my primary software/devices support FLAC natively, but their features outweigh that deficiency IMO
2) Given 1 above, I use lossless for archive purposes and not for playback. MAC wins the compression contest hands down
3) Unlike the FLAC developer, MAC's developer actually took the time to build a usable GUI to go with the codec. I like being able to set the priority of the encoding process and to pause it if I want

Good release smile.gif


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UED77
post Jan 22 2009, 07:06
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Monkey's is the open source lossless codec with the highest compression ratios. A new release is welcome!

Flac is convenient, Wavpack is flexible, TAK is promising... they all have their place -- even though I do agree with Josh that "market fragmentation" is disadvantageous in the interests of hardware support. But I'll gladly convert my one lossless format to any [decent] open-source one if hardware support becomes commonplace. It would make sense to rally behind one format; what we actually use on our computers isn't too relevant.

EDIT: MPEG-4 ALS is already an ISO/IEC standard, with reference encoders, decoders, and specs available.

This post has been edited by UED77: Jan 22 2009, 07:18


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wavpack 4.50 -hx3; lame 3.97 -V4 --vbr-new
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Alexxander
post Jan 22 2009, 09:29
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QUOTE (jcoalson @ Jan 21 2009, 23:34) *
...
QUOTE (Alexxander @ Jan 21 2009, 16:12) *
If tomorrow a new lossless codec shows up with similar features as FLAC, Wavpack or TAK but for example with a compression of more than 50% and easy to implement in hardware then the market share distribution can change very fast.

if you mean 2x the compression of the current state of the art, no such codec is possible, and even then it would not be a fast transition. mp3 was around many years before it became ubiquitous in devices.

Yes, I meant the compressed result is less than half the original wav size. Though I only meant it just as a possible motive to switch codec, I wonder why such isn't possible. I haven't seen any study determining the limit and I've seen so many "impossible" evolutions which are now part of our daily life smile.gif

But then, in industry and market only survive the easy and cheap producible solutions (includes hardware and non-hardware costs), allthough their quality may not be the best.
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