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Old 11th September 2013, 08:58   #6
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Originally Posted by ryerman View Post
Hi MrSinatra

I bet it's a big job converting your library and I hope this is the worst of any problems!
thx again for your testing.

actually, the vast majority of my stuff is EAC ripped 256kbps mp3, at q1 and lame 3.96 or higher. contrary to [audio forum's] popular opinion, I don't think most people could tell the difference in a double blind test between a HQ mp3 and a FLAC (or lossless) file, and esp not in most real world listening scenarios. Having said that, I did do the Beatle remasters in FLAC, and I have some other FLACs as well, mostly from DLs or a few DVD rips, or wav/ape/shorten conversions, etc. I will make mp3 dupes of them for portables later. while I doubt I could discern the difference, I do think the Beatles, Pink Floyd, and some other landmark albums warrant the treatment, esp since the difference in HD space for cherry picked albums isn't really a concern.

what I have to find out is a good way to rip to m4a/ALAC directly, so I can skip a FLAC step. I might try cuetools ripper, if I find EAC too difficult to configure to rip to ALAC. there are some things I haven't reached a conclusion on yet, as some vers of ALAC seem to allow for compression options and so on that maybe ffmpeg or ref vers don't, but that's for another thread.

the job then isn't too big, the conversions are fairly easily, its in getting the existing tagging to be equal, that's tedious. my ultimate goal is to have everything in either ALAC or mp3, (and ergo apple/istuff/winamp friendly). at some point I will go back and cherry pick what albums I want to upgrade from mp3 to ALAC, (and of course, re-rip).

Originally Posted by ryerman View Post
My system basics are in my signature but I've attached an Info Report, in case it's helpful.
Otherwise, I'll hold off from any detailed response.
why no 5.65 or 5.7? you could do tests on my files in safe mode tho, even on 5.64

Originally Posted by ryerman View Post
Instead, I may have a work-around for the undesirable behaviour of your example .m4a files.

Try the attached files.
They were transcoded from your example mono .flac files, but into stereo .m4a.
For me, the weird playback issues disappeared and the bit rates are shown consistently in Winamp. They agree with Mp3tag (+-1 kbps). But still, not with the .flac originals.
I have tried your files, and yes the bitrates in the player window are now consistent. that's an improvement. they also sound better, but that's both good and bad.

its good they sound better, but mono into stereo should be a transparent change, and the files should sound exactly the same, but they don't. just like my FLAC > ALAC conversions, they sound "different." they also result in different RG values, which is expected given the mono to stereo re-encoding.

I have taken your files, and added them to mine, and attached them to this post. if you could sort by title and listen to all these with earphones in, i'd really like to hear your feedback on that.

as to the kbps, I also find that odd. I would not expect the kbps to be exactly the same between FLAC/ALAC, but def close. I also can't explain the big differences between winamp and mp3tag.

Originally Posted by ryerman View Post
Afterwards, if you still want, I can answer your questions.

I think 1 or both of 2 things are happening:
1. GIGO: the flac files are faulty (even though they play in Winamp) and therefore the resulting .m4a files are faulty.
2. Winamp doesn't like mono .m4a.

But I'm just guessing out loud.
it def seems winamp doesn't like mono m4a ALAC, or at least those with odd / low specs.

I still have a problem with the GIGO theory, in that they may well be garbage, but I don't see the proof of that.

anyway, interested to hear your listening tests with earbuds results.

EDIT: I did minor tag edits to make the comparisons easier to do, and also added RG. I also noticed in mp3tag the "Mode" column lists 1 or 2 for channels for mp3/m4a, but "Mono" and presumably "Stereo" for FLAC.
Attached Files
File Type: zip (757.1 KB, 504 views)

BUG #1 = Winamp skips short tracks
Wish #1 = Multiple Column Sorting
Wish #2 = Add TCMP/Compilation editing

Last edited by MrSinatra; 11th September 2013 at 10:14.
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