The MP3 is officially dead according to its creators.

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Classicrock, May 13, 2017.

  1. Grant

    Grant A Musical Free-Spirit

    This generally the kind of response i'll get from a lot of non-audiophiles when they want to be honest.
  2. bcaulf

    bcaulf Forum Resident

    I fully admit to not being an audiophile. Just someone who really enjoys their music and good sound, even if it’s not perfect :)

    But I’ve grown, and may continue to grow. I used to be perfectly fine with those cheap earbuds.
    snowman872, beat_truck and Grant like this.
  3. greelywinger

    greelywinger That T-Rex Guy

    Dayton, Ohio USA
    Mainly FLAC for me. MP3s are an afterthought.

  4. Solitaire1

    Solitaire1 Carpenters Fan

    The above comment reminds me of a comment from the documentary So Wrong They're Right (a movie about people devoted to 8-track tapes). In the movie, Corey Greenberg (a writer for Stereophile Magazine) made a point that people seemed to get more enjoyment out of listening to music on 8-track (a format with some serious issues) than the people who were listening to music on their high-end equipment on CD and LP.
    snowman872 likes this.
  5. bcaulf

    bcaulf Forum Resident

    Interesting. I guess it comes down to whatever the easiest option is for most people. The average consumer wouldn’t be bothered with spending all the time and money on expensive equipment just to get the best sound when they’re happy with what they’ve got. Like myself, with good headphones and finely encoded audio files playing off a portable. Sure it could be better, but I know it’s far from bad. If it’s ok with you then there is no wrong :)

    Same thing as many of my peers asking me why I don’t just stream, and there are a number of reasons (including being tied to chosen quality and bitrates) but they stick to it as it works for them. To each their own, as they say.
  6. Higlander

    Higlander Well-Known Member

    Florida, Central
    Do you have something factual to back that up, (A link to a Study or something) or are you talking only anecdotal accounts from audiophiles that were aware of the source being used?
  7. enfield

    enfield Forum Resident

    Essex UK
    Lossless WAV for me..Not interested in advanced tagging or slightly smaller files sizes.
    andrewskyDE likes this.
  8. Higlander

    Higlander Well-Known Member

    Florida, Central

    Same Here!
    Although the file sizes are a good bit smaller with MP3, not enough to matter at home.
    I have to convert some to play in my car to MP3 which creates extra work.
    enfield likes this.
  9. Part of what I consider to be better recording and mastering quality is whether the recording has the style of sound that would allow me to hear the difference between a lossy version and lossless version, or between the CD and high-res (if a high-res version is available). If the recording has the sort of things I listen for to hear a difference between lossy and lossless then I consider it to be well mastered even if it has a low DR. I prefer higher DR, but if the recording and mastering can allow me to hear what I'm listening for then it's in the category I consider good even if it has a low DR.

    As an example, Mogwai's "Atomic" has the style of sound quality that allows me to hear the benefits of high-res over CD, which means it also has the style of sound quality that would make a lossy vs lossless comparison noticeable. Even though "Atomic" has an overal DR7. Not good DR, but I consider it well recorded and well mastered for what it is. The heavy handed recording and mastering didn't kill the recording.

    Another example would be The War On Drug's "A Deeper Understanding". This album does not have the style of sound quality that would make a lossy vs lossless comparison worthwhile. The recording sound had the life squeezed out of it. No real point in doing a lossy vs lossless comparison with an album like that. No real point in getting audiophile with an album like that.

    I consider Mogwai's "Atomic" to be better recorded and mastered (and more enjoyable to listen to) than The War On Drug's "A Deeper Understanding". With "Atomic" I care if what I'm listening to is lossless and high-res. With "A Deeper Understanding" I don't really care.
  10. I'm not against listening to MP3. I have an iPod Classic and fill it with MP3 versions of my music (LAME -V0). MP3 lets me fit more music on the iPod Classic and for how I use the iPod and the sound quality of the iPod and it's inability to play FLAC I just fill it with MP3. MP3 is a perfectly acceptable compromise for me on the iPod. The iPod also doesn't have the style of sound quality that would make getting picky about the sonic differences between lossy and lossless productive or worthwhile.

    However, with my PonoPlayer I put only lossless on it. And if I have a high-res version of an album I'll put the high-res version on the Pono instead of the CD res version. I treat the Pono and iPod differently and I listen to them differently with different expectations.
    vegafleet and bcaulf like this.
  11. Solitaire1

    Solitaire1 Carpenters Fan

    I agree about to each their own. I don't stream because: (1) I don't have access to reliable wi-fi, and (2) I prefer to own the music that I have rather than relying on a distant source. Streaming is okay for sampling music (although I prefer to use YouTube for that purpose), but if I want to keep it I buy it.

    For me, my Walkman with good headphones (Koss Portapros) and Red Book lossless files are good enough, with high-quality lossy files good enough in some situations (such as in the car). It also relates to the software I use to manage my music. Other programs like iTunes and MediaMonkey might be able to do more, but I like the simplicity of Media Go (no need to sync my music to my Walkman, just select the songs and send them to my player, and listening to music on my computer is easy).
  12. Higlander

    Higlander Well-Known Member

    Florida, Central
    HotelYorba101 likes this.
  13. vwestlife

    vwestlife Forum Resident

    New Jersey, USA
    Why not use M4A/AAC? It's natively supported by the iPod and iTunes has a built-in encoder for it. At equal bitrates AAC should easily outperform MP3.
  14. Digital-G

    Digital-G Forum Resident

    Dayton, OH
    Every method of playing back music is dead: vinyl, CD's SACD, DVD-A, cassette tapes, 8-tracks, radio, DAT, etc.

    Depending on who you ask...

    Though I admit, I don't MP3 anymore. I never really did too much. I'm more of a WAV guy.
  15. bcaulf

    bcaulf Forum Resident

    Funny you mention the Walkman. On my way home from work today I was reading about DAP’s. If I ever decide to go lossless, this would be the way to go for me. For starters, they play back at a higher quality than the iPhone (so they say). I also wouldn’t have to worry about loading my phone with big lossless files, which could hinder the use of my phone for other things and take up too much space. I can use the music on the MUSIC player, and they should provide enough space with SD card support. Finally, my lossless music is stored as FLAC, which DAP’s support. I wouldn’t have to re-encode as Apple Lossless and then update my library with the newer ALAC files. I could just load the FLAC onto the DAP. It would take a lot less time.

    It’s an option, now that I’m thinking about it...
  16. Solitaire1

    Solitaire1 Carpenters Fan

    I'm a long-term Walkman DAP devotee, going back to Sony's first MP3 Walkman. I currently use an NWZ-A17 hi-res player, and while it does have its quirks (when you are loading music you can access the internal memory or the memory card but not both at the same time, and playlists can contain songs from the internal memory or the memory card but not both locations), it is a very easy-to-use player that lets me focus on listening to my music. While Sony makes some excellent players, they don't seem to advertise them (I only found out about my current player via on-line reading).

    One of the reason main reasons I prefer to use a DAP rather than a multipurpose device (like a smart phone) is that it tends to be easier to use. To illustrate with a related device, I have a voice recorder that I use to make short recordings. I could use my flip phone to make the recordings but to do it I have to drill through several menu levels to get to the voice recording function and then make the recording, THEN I have to drill through other menus in order to listen to the voice recording I just made. But with my voice recorder I just hit "Record" to make a recording, hit "Stop" to end the recording, then hit "Play" to listen to what I just recorded.
    bcaulf likes this.
  17. I standardized many years ago on MP3 being my lossy format. I don't want to deal with yet another file format. So I'm staying with MP3 as my lossy file format. MP3 is good enough for lossy and works on more devices and is more universal. The devices that I have and care about are able to play MP3 gapless. If they didn't then I'd change to AAC. But they do, so no need to change.
    beat_truck and Claude Benshaul like this.
  18. missan

    missan Forum Resident

  19. bcaulf

    bcaulf Forum Resident

    Thanks for your response. Would you be able to explain the difference you hear between a smartphone and a DAP, with just regular 16 bit files? The kicker for me, honestly, is knowing I paid a hefty amount for a 256GB phone specifically for music, and then that becoming a waste when I no longer decide to use my phone for music...I actually wanted a 128GB phone but they didn’t have it in stock so I bit the bullet on the large one.
  20. Carl Swanson

    Carl Swanson Resident blabbermouth

    I could tell it had a fatal illness on first hearing . . .
  21. Michael

    Michael I LOVE WIDE S-T-E-R-E-O!

    WAV is great especially now that HDs are so cheap and with larger capacity...I always used WAV when I was heavily into making CD comps..
  22. Michael

    Michael I LOVE WIDE S-T-E-R-E-O!

    it worked and still works great for portability.
    Mp3 320 has no illness...: )
  23. Carl Swanson

    Carl Swanson Resident blabbermouth

    I could hear differences on almost any decent platform.
  24. Michael

    Michael I LOVE WIDE S-T-E-R-E-O!

    sure, if you look hard enough...Mp3 320 is perfect for portability IMO...
    Shak Cohen and beat_truck like this.
  25. Higlander

    Higlander Well-Known Member

    Florida, Central
    Ya, but in all fairness, anecdotes are a dime a dozen.(Not doubting yours or anything)
    I remember participating in an online Blind test, and the outcome was decidedly different from what the "consensus" that some had forecast.
    So theres that.

    I never use MP3 except in my car, as storage space is cheap now, but I do not begrudge it either.

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