Best sound

MP3, WMA, Wave?

Hi again,

Does anybody know what kind of format doesn’t change the music? I’ve got the idea that MP3 makes the music a little bit “waterly”. I put the music on internet so it must be a format that’s for everyone easy to download. Thanks! Maria :)

Well, I guess the choice is only between MP3 or WMA. Wave is much too big…


both mp3 and wma (and ogg) are so-called “lossy” formats, so the resulting packed audio file lacks something the original had. How much and how audibly, depends on the conversion settings.

I’ve mainly dealt with mp3 (the most common format). It gives decent (ie. pretty listenable) results at 128 kbps setting. 192 kbps setting is better, almost cd-like, but the compression is still audible at long reverb tails etc.

It’s always the compromise between the audio quality and the downloadability. As usual, try different formats with different settings and listen the results with different computers to find out what suits your needs.

There are some lossless compression formats like Monkey’s Audio (.ape) and flac, but the resulting files are much bigger. Monkey’s Audio about halves the size of the original wav file.

Hope this helps.

- Mwah

You could also try the lossless format shorten (.shn):

But like ape and flac it only about halves the file size. Mwah is right that 192kbps mp3 still sounds good, personally I go for 160kbps (stereo) for the best balance between size and quality.

It’s maybe a stupid question but I would really like to know: when I convert a song to mp3 I can choose the quality. 196 sounds allright but I know the songs too good, maybe I hear things because I think I hear them. When I choose 196 it should be “better quality” the converterprogramm says so. My question is better quality than usual mp3, better quality than the track I converted (I can’t imagine), or does it change something in the music. What does the programm do exactly with the music while converting? Or is it easy: the higher the KBPS is, the more the song sounds like the original? Thanks Maria!:)

Quote (maria @ Jan. 22 2005,10:17)
Or is it easy: the higher the KBPS is, the more the song sounds like the original?

You're right. The higher the Kb, the better the quality. I usually use 160 because it keeps it fairly small and you don't hear too many artifacts. I can always hear the cymbals getting destroyed @ 128Kbs not as bad @ 160.

Using the Windows Media Player v9 codec, you can convert to VBR lossless wma files, though these will of course be larger than the lossy files. DBPoweramp is a program that supports this.

Some mp3 encoders can give better quality results than others, too. The one that used to come bundled with N (when you select “also create an mp3 version” during mixdown) was quite poor in comparison to Lame, which gave me a cleaner sound at the same bitrate levels.

I didn’t know you could create lossless .wma’s! I’m going to give that a go.

I’m with jmccullo, the WMA format using VBR is superior to MP3 IMO and the size difference is negligible. However, I am pretty sure that VBR WMAs are lossy though. I find VBR 90 or 75 to be the sweet spots for size vs quality.

The Windows Media Audio 9.1 codec, downloadable from here allows lossless VBR creation of wma files - see below.

If you want a format that “dont change the music” but that use less space than normal wave files, you can try with FLAC that is a “lossless” format, it compress the wave data without touch it quality.


Great, really great, enough stuff to trie, Thanks guys!!!:)