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Higher Quality iTunes Purchases

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Hi everyone, I am considering re-importing all of my music in Apple Lossless format, currently my music is all AAC. I want higher quality music to listen to on my sound system and headphones. I was thinking about burning the music I have purchased from the iTunes Store to a cd, and then importing it again. Does anyone know if this would this actually increase the sound quality, or will I just end up with the exact same quality music?

 

Thanks

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It shouldn't increase your sound quality.

 

When burning and re-ripping music, the sound can only lose quality unless you run it through some type of enhancer. You might not lose any quality by burning and ripping, as all the data is just a bunch of ones and zeroes, but you definitely won't improve the sound.

 

-Rob

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I have a theory that when every you move data, some gets lost. Ie if you burn it out, then rip it back again, you'll loose quality no matter what. (It need to be said that in this theory you loose such a small amount of data that you won't actually notice....

 

On another topic, what do you guys think about being able to buy music of iTS in different quality? If you want the standard 128kbps AAC file, it's .99$, and a higher price as the quality goes up. I know I'd buy at least some of the music at a higher quality.

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I have a theory that when every you move data, some gets lost. Ie if you burn it out, then rip it back again, you'll loose quality no matter what. (It need to be said that in this theory you loose such a small amount of data that you won't actually notice....

 

On another topic, what do you guys think about being able to buy music of iTS in different quality? If you want the standard 128kbps AAC file, it's .99$, and a higher price as the quality goes up. I know I'd buy at least some of the music at a higher quality.

 

 

Whenever digital music is being moved from one type of media to another, and it's kept in the same format, you neither lose or gain anything. On the other hand, if you do the same but re-encode the music to a different audio format, you will lose some quality. In ANY case, you will not increase the music quality.

 

I agree Daniel, I think ITMS should offer higher quality (higher bit rate) music at a proportionate higher price. I'd be very interested in that. I'm from the old days of vinyl, and before our precious media became inundated with pops, clicks, and scratches, we enjoyed some rather high quality recordings that contained a lot of ambience, imaging, and warmth. I haven't experienced that from the diluted digital media we are being offered nowadays.

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I consider myself an Audiophile. I never wanted to buy music from ITS because it's 128kbps. So I did a test. I ripped several CDs at both 128kbps AAC and AIFF. I spent some time listening to both on high end Sennheiser headphones. Could I tell a difference? BARELY!! Only in very loud, full sections could I hear a very slight loss in the extreme high-end of the AAC.

 

So considering the size difference between 128AAC and Apple Lossless, I would say the difference in quality isn't worth the extra space. Most of my listening is done on my car's stock system, so their is no point in filling my iPod with Lossless rips, which I won't be taking advantage of.

 

If you are paranoid about it, go with 160 AAC, but I don't see any good reason to rip in Lossless. If you have a high-end system, you'll probably be playing from CD or vinyl anyway ;)

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It shouldn't increase your sound quality.

 

 

What you should have said here is that it will not increase the quality at all. He will be taking a lossy format file and expanding it back to WAV format. The bits that were lost when it was compressed will still be lost. There is no way of filling in the missing data from the original music file before it was converted to AAC for iTunes. Once it is expanded, he would be pulling that incomplete file off the disk with the missing information.

 

No increase in quality at all. To get increased quality, the OP would have to purchase the music on CD and rip it personally. Another thing we could do is petition Apple to give us the option to purchase higher quality music from iTunes. I would not mind purchasing a slightly higher quality file for maybe another quarter per song or something like that.

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Keep it at the same price!

They just increased the quality of videos so that a TV show, $2, is now over half a gigabyte! If they were to charge more for songs, it would be to cover the bandwidth, storge is not a problem for a high-revenue operation like iTunes. They are not only allowing us to use incredibly large amounts of bandwidth, they are forcing us to if we want videos. Why not, say, triple the sound quality? You wouldn't notice a difference in download time when you compare everything to a massive TV show.

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Whenever digital music is being moved from one type of media to another, and it's kept in the same format, you neither lose or gain anything. On the other hand, if you do the same but re-encode the music to a different audio format, you will lose some quality. In ANY case, you will not increase the music quality.

 

I agree Daniel, I think ITMS should offer higher quality (higher bit rate) music at a proportionate higher price. I'd be very interested in that. I'm from the old days of vinyl, and before our precious media became inundated with pops, clicks, and scratches, we enjoyed some rather high quality recordings that contained a lot of ambience, imaging, and warmth. I haven't experienced that from the diluted digital media we are being offered nowadays.

True, but not quite true. It wouldn't be noticable, however, lets say that you copied over your iTunes library via an external hard drive to another computer. the process: send to hard drive via usb, write to hard drive, send back to the different computer via usb, and then write to the internal hard drive of the different computer. thats five steps there. the big thing here: what if part of the data was written onto a bad sector? (keep in mind that sectors are small, so the file could still be usable but some of the data...altered because of the sector defect).

 

also, think about the usb data transfer. i've worked in robotics, and I know that timing is everything when it comes transfering data. i'll give you and example of what I'm talking about: ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder). Scientists think its caused because of certain parts of the brain working faster than others. Well lets say that for a small amount of time (miliseconds or microseconds; we're talking computers here lol), the external hard drive is slightly delayed at writing the data and maybe misses a byte or two because the computer is sending it data slightly faster than it can write. If this is done repeatedly, the effect can become similar to running a copy through a copy machine and then copying the copy and so on. But my main point was the whole bad sector thinger. Either way, neither of the things I've pointed out will affect you in the case of small files; its really just for things like defragmentation and other things that deal with very large files.

 

Anyway, I sound like such a nerd (don't comment lol) when I write a paragraph or so about how you can loose a small amount of quality....you know I'm just gonna shut up now. Lol. Bye everybody.

 

-Patrick

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Imagine this:

 

You go to Yosemite. You take an amazing, almost Ansel Adams-like photo of a waterfall. You take it home, print a copy, put it down on your desk and hold the camera over it, and take a picture of the picture, and then decide to frame that version of the picture.

 

The moral of the story is don't buy music off iTunes. It locks you into playing your music with iTunes and the iPod, and doesn't allow you to safely transcode your files from one format to the next. Support your local record shop and maintain your right to fair use.

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You definitely can't improve the sound by re-ripping from a lossy format to a lossless format. The only way to improve the quality would be to re-rip from CD, but obviously with music purchased from the iTunes store you don't have that option.

 

I may be worth checking out the Creative Xmod, a USB dongle that is claimed improves the quality of lossy compression by enhancing the low and high frequencies that are usually stripped out.

 

The reviews look promising and at $80 it shouldn't break the bank.

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You definitely can't improve the sound by re-ripping from a lossy format to a lossless format. The only way to improve the quality would be to re-rip from CD, but obviously with music purchased from the iTunes store you don't have that option.

 

I may be worth checking out the Creative Xmod, a USB dongle that is claimed improves the quality of lossy compression by enhancing the low and high frequencies that are usually stripped out.

 

The reviews look promising and at $80 it shouldn't break the bank.

 

But does it make 80 dollars worth of diffference? ;)

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Imagine this:

 

You go to Yosemite. You take an amazing, almost Ansel Adams-like photo of a waterfall. You take it home, print a copy, put it down on your desk and hold the camera over it, and take a picture of the picture, and then decide to frame that version of the picture.

 

The moral of the story is don't buy music off iTunes. It locks you into playing your music with iTunes and the iPod, and doesn't allow you to safely transcode your files from one format to the next. Support your local record shop and maintain your right to fair use.

 

Oh my, that was hilarious... loved it. But, your first paragraph did make a good point. Because of several analog steps in that procedure, you've ended up with a picture on your wall that resembles a bad acid trip rather than a beautiful waterfall.

 

In response to paragraph two, ripping the music to CD, then re-importing back into iTunes will get rid of the DRM, although messy and time consuming. But I did find a little program called DRM Dumpster that automates the process somewhat. Strange that the program has you using CD-RW discs instead of CD-R's. But the theory there is to keep from wasting numerous CD blanks (although CD-R's are dirt cheap), if all you are doing with the music is reimporting it back into iTunes and have a lot of music to do this with.

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