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Username: Squirrel
Realname: Glenn Richards
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On Hifi buffs told Iyonix audio is good enough:

Certain lossy encoders (eg Sony's ATRAC) do actually clean up the sound by removing stuff that although you can't hear does "muddy" the sound. When I first invested in a minidisc deck a few years back I was quite surprised at this, when some MD copies actually sounded cleaner than the original CD.

However, MP3 doesn't fall into this category, and MP3 encoded material does sound noticably worse.

Also it depends very much on the listener. I seem to be cursed with being able to hear minute differences that most people wouldn't, eg the slightest trace of MP3 compression, even the difference between OFC and silver speaker cable (the silver cable sounds better!). I say "cursed" because it means I end up spending a lot more on audio hardware than on CDs to play on it...

 is a RISC OS UserSquirrel on 7/10/05 8:57AM
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On Hifi buffs told Iyonix audio is good enough:


I just did a blind test here. I ripped a track, then encoded it as FLAC, OGG Vorbis and MP3. I then threw all 3 into Winamp, along with the original WAV file. Hit the random play then repeat buttons, closed my eyes and hit play. Without looking I could hear a huge difference between lossy (MP3/Vorbis) and lossless (WAV or FLAC) formats. OGG Vorbis does sound better than MP3, but still lacks detail when compared to a lossless format such as FLAC.

I then repeated a test with a friend selecting a version of the track and playing it, same result. I was able to distinguish immediately between lossy and lossless versions.

Of course FLAC sounds identical to the original WAV, as it's mathematically lossless.

 is a RISC OS UserSquirrel on 18/9/05 6:21PM
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On Hifi buffs told Iyonix audio is good enough:

Not with the music up that loud! Can see the blue & red flashing lights though, and brake hard accordingly!

 is a RISC OS UserSquirrel on 12/9/05 6:16PM
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On Hifi buffs told Iyonix audio is good enough:

Lame is about the best MP3 encoder out there at present, and yes, the MP3 files it produces do sound very very good - in isolation.

However, I've tried an A/B comparison of MP3 VBR, MP3 320 CBR and WAV uncompressed, played through a Turtle Beach Audiotron (sadly no longer available) into an Arcam AVR-250 with Mordaunt-Short Avant 908 speakers, using Audio Innovations Silver speaker cable (and yes, the cable does make a difference). Can't tell between VBR and 320 MP3s (except the VBRs are smaller), but play the WAV and suddenly there's a lot more detail and depth to the music. Go back to the MP3 and you can hear slight artifacts on things like hi-hats etc.

Mind you, you're talking to the person who had an MP3 player in his car and could clearly hear compression artifacts whilst belting down the M40 at 130mph... I now have a Sony MEX-1HD, which uses ATRAC compression instead.

 is a RISC OS UserSquirrel on 12/9/05 4:56PM
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On Hifi buffs told Iyonix audio is good enough:

160-320kbit VBR, lame options -q1 -mj -b160 -V0

If you must use CBR, use 192kbit, lame options -q1 -mj -b192.

Even at 320kbit though MP3 sounds lacking in detail compared to the original CD or WAV file. FLAC is your friend!

 is a RISC OS UserSquirrel on 10/9/05 1:18PM
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