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Can I encode 24 bit wav into flac files?, without any quality loss?
Sigmund Goid
post Mar 27 2011, 09:03
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Hello all. I couldn't find a direct answer to this question so I am wasting space with a topic; hope you all can help.

So I downloaded an album that is presented as 24 bit wav (44,100 sample rate). Normally I would drag these wavs into the EAC window and the command line flac compressor would do it's thing; however I have only ever done this with 16 wav files so I am wondering if this will still work with 24 bit wav files without any quality loss?

Also, I downloaded an album that is presented in 16 bit wav, but the sampling rate is 48,000. Will this also work without quality loss? I guess I am (irrationally) concerned that the flac encode will downgrade the file to 16 bit and/or sampling rate to 44,100... though that really wouldn't make sense since this is 'lossless' compression.

Thanks in advance. I am sure this question is pretty basic ultimately.
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Kohlrabi
post Mar 27 2011, 13:31
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I don't know how EAC drag and dropping behaves, but the reference encoder (flac.exe) is perfectly able to handle 24bit and/or 48kHz input. Why don't you just test what EAC does, you won't lose your original WAVs in the progress (hopefully?).


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Apesbrain
post Mar 27 2011, 15:09
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If it doesn't work out with EAC you can alternatively use foobar2000. Converter Settings for the 24-bit files would look something like this:



For the 16-bit files of course it would be set to 16-bit output bit depth. There is an "Auto" setting for bit-depth that you can also try. (Not sure why I didn't use it; I may have had a problem with it at one point. I'll have to try it again sometime.)
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mixminus1
post Mar 27 2011, 16:54
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@Sigmund Goid: Um...try it?

As long as you have the "Delete WAV after compression" option unchecked, EAC won't do anything to your source files, so drag 'n' drop 'n' see what happens.

I did so, and it appears that EAC won't accept anything other than a 44.1 kHz sample rate, which makes sense as it's a CD ripping program.

It had no problem with 24-bit word lengths, however.

As has been noted, FLAC itself is perfectly capable of encoding 24-bit and high sample rate files (*really* high sample rates - up to 655350 Hz!).

Just for shits 'n' giggles, I generated a 10 second pink noise file in Cool Edit 2000 at 24/384, saved to WAV, encoded to FLAC using foobar2000, and then ran a bit-compare on the WAV and FLAC - no errors...and FLAC -8 got the bitrate all the way down to 8879 kb/s! wink.gif

This post has been edited by mixminus1: Mar 27 2011, 16:57


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Sigmund Goid
post Mar 28 2011, 00:36
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So yes, as you mentioned EAC was able to encode 24bit/44,100 kHz wavs into flac with no problems. The 16bit/48,000 kHz wavs couldn't be encoded by the program though.

I have only ever used EAC to encode wavs so I really am not sure what to use to do this! I DO use Foobar2K for playback on my PC, but I didn't know it could encode flac files as well. Some of you are mentioning that I could use it to encode these higher sample rate wavs. Is there a website I could visit for explicit instruction on how to do this? Foobar seems complex and I have been able to get it looking pretty using 'Columns UI', but beyond that the program is a mystery to me!

Any help is appreciated!!!!!!!!
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saratoga
post Mar 28 2011, 01:00
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QUOTE (Sigmund Goid @ Mar 27 2011, 18:36) *
The 16bit/48,000 kHz wavs couldn't be encoded by the program though.


You're doing something wrong. FLAC works fine for that.

QUOTE (Sigmund Goid @ Mar 27 2011, 18:36) *
I have only ever used EAC to encode wavs so I really am not sure what to use to do this! I DO use Foobar2K for playback on my PC, but I didn't know it could encode flac files as well. Some of you are mentioning that I could use it to encode these higher sample rate wavs. Is there a website I could visit for explicit instruction on how to do this? Foobar seems complex and I have been able to get it looking pretty using 'Columns UI', but beyond that the program is a mystery to me!


We have an entire wiki and FAQ full of this stuff, take a look at it:

http://wiki.hydrogenaudio.org/index.php?title=EAC_and_FLAC
http://wiki.hydrogenaudio.org/index.php?ti...with_Foobar2000
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Sigmund Goid
post Mar 28 2011, 01:37
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Ah yes! I figured it out in Foobar2K and it works great! Thanks so much everyone! smile.gif
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pdq
post Mar 28 2011, 03:54
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FYI - anything over 16 bits doesn't encode very efficiently in lossless. Why? Because the additional bits are essentially random noise, at least for real-world material.
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nimd4
post Apr 25 2011, 14:35
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QUOTE (Kohlrabi @ Mar 27 2011, 14:31) *
[..] you won't lose your original WAVs in the progress (hopefully?).

Lol, always manipulate a copy and/or make the original read-only. :F


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