View Full Version : Best format to rip MP3 AAC etc

Steve UK
2005-06-28, 13:07
Hello all

Quick question from a newbie...
What is the best format / bitrate to rip your CD's in ???

I have a SB2 connected wireless 802.11g so I know that bandwidth may be an issue.

Most tunes i have ripped at the moment are AAC 128k using Itunes but I also have Winamp and may try using it..

Thnx in advance

2005-06-28, 13:48
Hello - answer from a nearly-newbie...

If you have wireless G then you don't have a bandwidth problem - theoretical 54 Mbits, practically 25+ Mbits: unless you have some other heavy use of that network, you can easily stream losslessly - say FLAC at 900kbits several times over.

So your bitrate/format should be determined by the quality of sound you want, the disc space you have, and of course the quality of whatever you have downstream from the SB2. If you're listening through some earbuds then your 128k AAC will sound fine. If you're feeding it into a semi decent stereo then you'll need a lot better.

Everyone will have their own answer to this. Personally I ripped everything in three formats (one pass, using EAC/MAREO): FLAC for listening to in full quality on my living room stereo, AAC for my son's iPod and MP3 for my daughter's MP3 player and maximum compatibility.

One thing - its taken me a lot of hours to rip my CD collection, so I really didn't want to have to do it again. This means having at least one lossless format among your targets so if you find you need some other format in the future, you can always regenerate from the lossless one. WAV is non controversial but a bit big. Hence my use of FLAC. Taking all three I find gives me around 500MB per CD. I found hydrogenaudio a useful source of info while I was learning about all of this stuff.

Good luck!

2005-06-28, 14:41
A second vote for FLAC.

Rip to a lossless 'base' format (such as FLAC) and you'll be able to recreate the original WAV and/or transcode to any other format whenever you want, without any compound loss in quality.

If you ripped to a lossy codec like MP3 and needed to transcode to another lossy format (such as Ogg Vorbis) in future then the audio quality will be much worse since you will have thrown away data twice.

Steve UK
2005-06-29, 07:40
Hi All

Thanks for the info. I can see why you would use Flac as a starting point. I suppose the only issue is disk space. Hard Drives are very cheap now though.. Even in the UK ...{:-)

Patrick Dixon
2005-06-29, 09:01
Yeah, a 200GB SATA or IDE drive is about 75 and will hold the contents of about 575 CDs in FLAC. That number of CDs would probably have cost you about 8K.

At, say 10 minutes per CD to rip (using secure EAC), tag and compress, 575 CDs will occupy nearly 96 hours of your time. So the storage is not the expensive bit anymore ...