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Apple lossless files??

kcsun

Active Member
I have loads of tunes on my mac which have been recorded over the years by just putting cd's in and copying them to iTunes

I have upgraded my hifi and now have been reading about Apple lossless files, at the moment I play iTunes wirelessly to my apple tv3 and then by hdmi into my hifi

I notice that if i right click on a tune it will allow me to upgrade the song to apple lossless (this changes the file size from 4mb? to 16mb about 4 times bigger and also the bitrate also goes up from 256 to almost 1000 also 4 times)

can iTunes actually improve the quality as it only saves the small file when you upload the first time???

Or is it better to record direct in lossless when you put the cd in?

Also am I getting a good response using the method above or should I be investing in a DAC??

all help appreciated

kc
 

bpsmith

Distinguished Member
You simply cannot get better quality music from those converted at lower quality. It just doesn't work that way.

The only way is to rip again in lossless if that's what you want.

In saying that, iTunes Match is a good middle ground as it will give you better quality files of all matched music.
 

williamus

Active Member
As Mr Smith says, the only way to get Lossless is to re-rip your CDs, assuming you have them. If you have, I'd firmly recommend doing it. I've just completed doing my smallish collection and was pleasantly surprised how quick it was.. I suspect ripping to a lossy format (e.g. 256kbps) will take longer because of the compression needed. Your ATV3 supports Lossless and the results should be well worthwhile. For interest, I'm using HDMI to my TV for video content and optical to my HiFi for my music.
 

kcsun

Active Member
As I thought, you cannot make a high quality recording from a low quality one

Luckily all the cd's I listen alot to I can re-rip as lossless, all the rest will be ok for general listening, also any new ones will only be ripped in lossless
Still have not paid to download anything, prefer to have a CD or Blu ray in my hand

Will also fit an optical lead for music only - should that go through a DAC enroute to the amp??

Kc
 

williamus

Active Member
As I thought, you cannot make a high quality recording from a low quality one

Luckily all the cd's I listen alot to I can re-rip as lossless, all the rest will be ok for general listening, also any new ones will only be ripped in lossless
Still have not paid to download anything, prefer to have a CD or Blu ray in my hand

Will also fit an optical lead for music only - should that go through a DAC enroute to the amp??

Kc


Good man! Not trying to be smug in any way, but those who have entire music collections downloaded from iTunes at 256 (maximum iTunes bitrate) or 128 kbps may come to regret it over time, depending on how they listen to their music, of course.

I think that SJ was working on some kind of higher quality download (maybe Lossless) before he died. It might not have much appeal now, but as memory gets cheaper and download speeds get faster, I would have thought it was inevitable.

I don't think you'll need any kind of DAC. The optical signal is already digital.

Cheers
 
I use digital vinyl software called serato and I have ripped all my records to WAV or FLAC.. and have then converted to apple lossless for ease of use in itunes with label cover art etc....

as mentioned above. You cannot upgrade quality from a low quality source. All it will do is give you a much bigger file size with ZERO change in quality for the better. In fact it may degrade!

Re rip from scratch is the only option
 

kcsun

Active Member
yep
I have just started re-ripping now, I think my best option is to rip them all to my main library and then do a playlist solely of all the lossless ones, either that or I will start deleting the low quality files as I find them
kc
 
lower than 258 / 320 then yes get rid and try to re source

but 320 compared to lossless.. unless you are in the realms of audiophile listening (you may well be I am not assuming you aren't) then I really dont think you will notice that much of a difference.

I'm no audiophile but have some nice kit to play through and I can't notice much between a 90mb apple lossless to a 8mb 320 of the same tune.
 

williamus

Active Member
lower than 258 / 320 then yes get rid and try to re source

but 320 compared to lossless.. unless you are in the realms of audiophile listening (you may well be I am not assuming you aren't) then I really dont think you will notice that much of a difference.

I'm no audiophile but have some nice kit to play through and I can't notice much between a 90mb apple lossless to a 8mb 320 of the same tune.

It's how you quantify "that much of a difference", I guess. With good quality headphones (Sennheisser HD25-II and Atomic Floyd Superdarts) there is a definite improvement with Lossless to my ears, as there is when streaming through my ATV3 to my HiFi.

Is it a huge improvement over 320kbps or iTunes's 256kbps? No it's not, and for most purposes 256/320kbps is a perfectly good compromise.

I wouldn't consider myself an audiophile either, otherwise I wouldn't have relegated my turntable and vinyl to the loft several years ago. But those that seem to be in the know, (e.g. Neil Young) reckon that you lose a huge amount of the music when go from Vinyl to CD. Now if you're going from the 1400+ kbps of CD to 320kbps by compression, then you've lost a lot of music... maybe not the core bits but whichever way you look at it... a lot of the original.

As Llossless and FLAC are true bit-for-bit ripping it seems to make sense to use that if you can. Even if it's only a marginal difference... as you're using Serato and FLAC I realise I'm teaching grannies to suck eggs :blush:, so apologies.
 
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Major Dude

Active Member
I have two iTunes libraries on an external HDD via my macbook:-

one for apple lossless files;

the other for aac versions.

I have also loaded up onto iTunes Match.

I stream this and listen via an Apple TV with a digital output via a DAC to my HiFi.

The bottom line is that for anything anywhere near comparison with the original CD, having Apple Lossless version is essential, as the quality is so much better than aac or iTunes match versions.

So I would recommend downloading all your CDs again using Apple Lossless - it really is worth doing in the end.

Having said that nothing compares with a top quality pressing on 180g vinyl.
 
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