Get Free, Friendly, Expert Advice
Call 1-866-244-8796 or email

Designed and Manufactured in Canada Since 1980


AxiomAudio Blog

Sneak Peek into Axiom’s Current Research and Development

Axiom’s Newest Speaker: The In-Ceiling M3

Outdoor Speaker Placement

Wall'O'Fame
Experimental Atmos
Greetings fellow Axiom owners...
Who's Online
3 registered (oakvillematt, Ken.C, J. B.), 34 Guests and 4 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Financing
Forum Stats
13317 Members
11 Forums
22877 Topics
404369 Posts

Max Online: 378 @ 02/24/13 04:33 PM
Top Posters
Ken.C 17775
pmbuko 16274
SirQuack 13333
CV 11202
MarkSJohnson 10886
Meanwhile On Facebook

So much going on in this month's newsletter - new product announcements, a new v...

Love this comment from Doug T! "The M22 bookshelf speakers sound so clean and a...

󾓶 Andrew has spoken! Big update on the AxiomPlay Wireless Platform on the Axiom...

A New Look For Our Amps and Pre-amps? Adding yet another level of customization...

Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#251976 - 03/16/09 04:24 PM MP3 vs. WMA
BobG Offline
old hand

Registered: 10/02/04
Posts: 82
Loc: Rock Springs, WI
Ok, I know compressed audio formats are not a hot topic around here, but my daughter abandoned her mp3 player for an ipod, and I decided to try the mp3 for myself.

I am using Windows Media Player to rip my CD's for the MP3 player. Media Center allows me to rip into mp3 format or Windows Media Audio (WMA) format. My mp3 player uses either format. Is there any advantage to one format over the other?

Also, Media Player has a WAV (lossless) option for ripping CD's. I assume that won't work on an mp3 player, but is that a truly lossless way to copy music CD's without any compression?
_________________________
M60's Rotel Nad Music Hall MMF-5
M80's VP150 QS8's Sherwood Newcastle Panasonic Plasma
Algonquins

Top
#251980 - 03/16/09 04:34 PM Re: MP3 vs. WMA [Re: BobG]
zhimbo Offline
veteran

Registered: 02/15/07
Posts: 138
Loc: Hanover, New Hampshire
At higher bitrates (e.g. 320) there's little difference among the compression formats; the differences show up most strongly at the lower quality rates. I like mp3 over WMA because it's universal - everything plays mp3.

Yep, WAV is 100% accurate to the original source. WMA Lossless is as well, and has smaller files, but isn't universally playable.

Top
#251981 - 03/16/09 04:36 PM Re: MP3 vs. WMA [Re: BobG]
ClubNeon Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/06/09
Posts: 3448
Loc: Western Maryland, USA
MP3 is an aging format. New research into psychoacoustics and compression algorithms since then have resulted in improved audio quality. So at similar bitrates a WMA file should sound better than an MP3. Or put another way, one could use less space to store a lower bitrate WMA file which had the same quality of a larger MP3.

That said, WMA is a proprietary format of Microsoft and isn't supported by all players.

Lossless wave files are more than likely able to be played by your player. The biggest problem with them is their size. They are 10x larger than MP3s. An entire album will run around 600 MB, so an 8 GB player will only hold about 14 CDs. But yes, it is truly lossless (allowing for error-free rips).
_________________________
Pioneer VSX-1018AH-K, PDP-5020FD, DV-79AVi
Axiom M22s, VP150, QS8s
Sony PS3, surround backs
-Chris

Top
#251983 - 03/16/09 04:40 PM Re: MP3 vs. WMA [Re: zhimbo]
ClubNeon Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/06/09
Posts: 3448
Loc: Western Maryland, USA
 Originally Posted By: zhimbo
WMA Lossless is as well, and has smaller files, but isn't universally playable.

Just to clear that up. There is a lossless WMA format, called "WMA Pro", it is even less supported than regular WMA files.

Other compressed, but lossless formats include (but are not limited to): FLAC (the most popular), Shorten, and Monkey's Audio.
_________________________
Pioneer VSX-1018AH-K, PDP-5020FD, DV-79AVi
Axiom M22s, VP150, QS8s
Sony PS3, surround backs
-Chris

Top
#252001 - 03/16/09 05:17 PM Re: MP3 vs. WMA [Re: ClubNeon]
thedude_044 Offline
hobbyist

Registered: 07/07/05
Posts: 22
Loc: Mich
So logic leads us to the WMA super ultra 1 GB songs playable nowhere. ;\)
_________________________
M22's VP150 QS8's Onkyo TX503 Yamaha YST215 (sub)

Top
#252005 - 03/16/09 05:33 PM Re: MP3 vs. WMA [Re: ClubNeon]
BobG Offline
old hand

Registered: 10/02/04
Posts: 82
Loc: Rock Springs, WI
"Other compressed, but lossless formats"

OK, that confuses me. Perhaps I don't understand the terminology, which is almost a certainty. I thought lossless meant no compression? I.e., the ripped version was exactly the same as the original CD. In other words, if I ripped CD's into a lossless format on Media Player, then made playlists and burned them onto a new CD-R, I could play the CD-R on my "hi-fi" stereo system without any loss in sound quality. Is that not an accurate understanding of the situation?
_________________________
M60's Rotel Nad Music Hall MMF-5
M80's VP150 QS8's Sherwood Newcastle Panasonic Plasma
Algonquins

Top
#252015 - 03/16/09 06:11 PM Re: MP3 vs. WMA [Re: BobG]
ClubNeon Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/06/09
Posts: 3448
Loc: Western Maryland, USA
There are two types of compression: lossy and lossless.

Lossy compression attempts to exploit the inadequacies of the human senses to remove information which we won't miss. In the visual realm this includes JPEG images, and MPEG video, in the aural there are the MP3, WMA, Vorbis, AAC. (Not by coincidence nearly all those formats both for the eyes or ears are based upon Fourier transforms which substitute actual waveforms for slices of cosines which can easily be quantized and examined for what can be discarded.)

Lossless compression attempts to exploit redundancy in the actual data patterns. At it's simplest this would be akin to looking for strings of the same number and only recording that number once along with how many times it occurred in that run (this is called RLE-Run Length Encoding). To reverse that when you come to the encoded number and it's run, you simply pay out the correct count of that number and you have exactly the same data as it was originally recorded. Now, that doesn't get one very good compression, but more complicated techniques have been found which get about 50% compression on typical audio data. This is no were near the 90% which MP3 gains, but it does let you store 28 albums in 8 GB instead of the 14 of raw, uncompressed waves. Think about at Zip file, the data which goes into it is exactly what comes out, but it took less space to store in it's packed form. Blu-ray discs are now making use of two new lossless, but compressed audio formats known as Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD MasterAudio, these take up less space on the disc than the raw multi-channel PCM, freeing up room for better quality video (BTW, the video is still stored in a lossy format on Blu-ray).


Edited by ClubNeon (03/16/09 06:12 PM)
_________________________
Pioneer VSX-1018AH-K, PDP-5020FD, DV-79AVi
Axiom M22s, VP150, QS8s
Sony PS3, surround backs
-Chris

Top
#252042 - 03/16/09 08:54 PM Re: MP3 vs. WMA [Re: ClubNeon]
Ken.C Online   content
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17775
Loc: NoVA
CN, that was the best explanation I've ever read for that. Thank you!
_________________________
I am the Doctor, and THIS... is my SPOON!

Top
#252099 - 03/16/09 11:58 PM Re: MP3 vs. WMA [Re: Ken.C]
CV Offline
Founder, Axiom Upgrade Club
shareholder in the making

Registered: 07/20/06
Posts: 11202
Loc: Richland, WA, USA
Yes, very nice. I'm glad when people with actual knowledge show up to show off. \:\)

Top



Moderator:  alan, Amie, Andrew, axiomadmin, Brent, Debbie, Ian, Jc 

Home  |  Corporate Info  |  Products  |  Message Board  |  FAQs  |  Warranty  |  Site Map  |  Privacy Statement   |  Contact Us

©2014 Colquhoun Audio Laboratories Limited
All Rights Reserved.