Old 7th December 2005, 20:54   #1
MrSinatra
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AAC vs MP3

hi all,

first, i did a search, and couldn't find what i wanted, so here are my questions, all comments welcome:

i currently encode my radio station live via soundcard input at 32, 96 and 128kbps with the mp3 encoder. i am NOT concerned with bandwidth costs, only with purity of sound and user ease of use.

1. is aac+ only meant for lower bandwidths?

2. if yes, at what point does mp3 eclipse aac+?

3. what bitrate of AAC+ would be equitable to the mp3 bitrates i use?

4. or, is AAC+ better than the 3.96.1 lame winamp uses at any rate?

*** usage:

5. besides telling the encoder to use aac+, what else do i need to do so my users can use it?

6. at my site, i have a page of links for different players, see here:

http://www.lion-radio.org/wkps/listenlive.php

will my links for wmp or real work?

or, can i modify them somehow to make them work? if so, how?

thanks for the help, -mdw

PENN STATE Radio or http://www.LION-Radio.org/
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Old 7th December 2005, 21:42   #2
Jay
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windows media will not work with aacplus and last I heard real won't either.

As far as comparisons really it is all subjective, they are two very different codecs so low quality comparisons are really hard to achieve.
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Old 7th December 2005, 21:52   #3
MrSinatra
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Quote:
Originally posted by KXRM
windows media will not work with aacplus and last I heard real won't either.

As far as comparisons really it is all subjective, they are two very different codecs so low quality comparisons are really hard to achieve.
i understand its all more or less subjective, but i want and welcome the opinions, and also wanted to know if their was some knid of "baseline conventional wisdom" out there i could use to get a handle on my questions.

i am not interested only in low quality bandwidths btw...

and essentially, these are the right questions to be asking so one can know when and where to use one implementation over another.

it is disappointing that there is not a "workaround" for wmp. that might disqualify me all together until there is. what about itunes?

PENN STATE Radio or http://www.LION-Radio.org/
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Old 8th December 2005, 20:48   #4
gameplaya15143
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in my opinion:
aac+sbr sounds "OK" at almost all bitrates, and easily beats mp3 at bitrates under 80kbps, it never sounds 'good', aac (without sbr) starts sounding better above 80kbps, and it can reach 'good' quality as the bitrate is increased

mp3 is more compatible with stuff, so if you are using a bitrate of 96kbps or higher, mp3 is the way to go.
----------------------

the only real advice on the 2 formats is to test them and see for yourself
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Old 8th December 2005, 23:53   #5
MrSinatra
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what is "sbr"?

and when u say:

"it never sounds good"

what exactly is the "it" you mean?

PENN STATE Radio or http://www.LION-Radio.org/
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Old 11th December 2005, 19:28   #6
gameplaya15143
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aacPlus = aac+ = aac+sbr = aac-HE = HE-aac = aac with sbr, etc. etc.

'it' refers to whatever i was talking about in that sentence

compare aacplus to aac-LC (thats aac low complexity, aka normal aac) to mp3 and see for yourself how it sounds.
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Old 11th December 2005, 20:01   #7
radioxray
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Here's some excellent reading:

EBU subjective listening test on low bit rate audio codecs
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Old 12th December 2005, 18:35   #8
gameplaya15143
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Quote:
Originally posted by radioxray
Here's some excellent reading:

EBU subjective listening test on low bit rate audio codecs
wtf, its a pdf!!!
anyways, although it looks pretty comprehensive, no ogg vorbis in that test
i especially liked the bandwidth at 64kbps table
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Old 25th April 2008, 06:25   #9
keanu13
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AAC+ VS MP3 codecs factors

I think one should also consider the other factors for AAC+ Vs MP3 codecs. Basically these are audio codecs and Number of different factors implies for these difference such as compression technology/algorithm, Platform supported, OS supoorted etc.

To understand more regarding technical difference you can visit to IPsupermarket.com www.ipsupermarket.com
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Old 25th April 2008, 13:33   #10
Greg_E
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There is more to AAC+ than just Spectral Band Replication. Just the SBR part is AAC+ version 1 which is not so good below 64K but at 64K it sounds easily as good as MP3 at 128K (we have both codecs and rates running from the same source). I also liked aac+ version 2 at 32K, version 2 adds Parametric Stereo.

It progresses like this:

128K AAC sounds very good (depending on the player)
64K AAC + SBR (aac+v1) sounds the "same" or very good
32k AAC + SBR + PS (aac+v2) sounds almost the same still very good (better than FM radio).

I rate AAC at 128K better (slightly) than MP3 at 128K. I use the Orban Opticodec for our AAC/AAC+ and SimpleCast for MP3.

Now here is the rub..... AAC+ is about as widely supported as MP3pro was (OK maybe better). Since MP3pro uses the same SBR technology you can see why it isn't more widely supported, it all comes down to licensing, then you throw on the PS part and it gets worse.

Now why did I quote the above AAC (and variants) bit rates? Because I recently put up a Darwin Streaming Server to test AAC (since Apple still won't support aac+) which is far more compatible than anything except mp3. The Quicktime player however is installed on better than 90% of computers world wide (estimate). You could also go with Flash streams and aac+ (wrapped in an mpeg4 container) and a $1000 Flash server application and a $4000 server to server the Flash stream. The people at Adobe suggest that 99% of all computers have Flash installed, but can you really trust the marketing people???

Your mileage may vary!
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Old 7th December 2010, 07:30   #11
maneff
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Hi there. I've been doing lots of tests to see for myself which codec is best in low and in high bitrates. So you are asking for aac+ codec.. it's my favorite (for now).
It's probably the best codec for now because it's stable and provides high quality in small bit rates. You don't need to count how much is it better than mp3... because it beats it in almost all my tests.
The good news is that you can provide really high quality to your streams using this codec.
The bad news is that it's not yet compatible with the most devices. (Foe example, it will play correctly on windows with winamp, it will play in all sony devices, but it souldn't play in apple ifone and other crappy devices).
Here's some info about bitrates.... I'm counting quality to transperancy 50:50
32kbps, 48kbps, 64kbps HE-AAC v2 should sound like mp3 CBR at 144-160kbps
80kbps, 96kbps, 128kbps HE-AAC should sound like mp3 CBR at 192-224kbps (or vbr in higher bitrates)
High-quality he-aac v2 160kbp and more should sound better than mp3 (but you don't need to use it if you don't have lossless materials to stream.

I visited the site but couldn't hear the media (maybe temporary).
so what I saw was:

High Shoutcast 128 (if you use aac+ here, the quality should be better, but some users will still need mp3 stream)
Med Shoutcast 96 (for me this is a time and money loss. the quality is bad and is near to 128, so change it to aac+ 80kbps or 64kbps-if your bandwidth is not cheap)
Low Shoutcast 32 (you could change this to he-aac 32kbps and this would double the quality)
High Windows 128
Med Windows 96
Low Windows 32
about the win-m-p servers... you don't need that much servers and variables of bitrates in wma format. Not much people preffer wma, you should let just one of these streaming... like the 96 one

So if you decide to try my suggestions you should have a Low bitrate stream in aac+ (compatible with most the cellphones and hundreds of other mobile devices); you will have a lc-aac stream in average bitrate (that is compatible with the most players) and you will have an mp3 stream (which can be played by almost every player). Windows media player stream should be an advantage for some lame users using windows in the wrong way ;>

I hope I helped with my opinion. Excuse my bad English and have a nice holidays.
If you have more questions, don't be shy send me a PM :>
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Old 7th December 2010, 08:01   #12
MrSinatra
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the post is old, the site is no longer maintained, so go here to visit the new site:

www.thelion.fm

basically, b/c everything works with mp3, we are sticking with that. we pull the FM signal off the air b/c the omnia processor is at the xmtr site and besides that we can listen on the net to see if we went off the air. techy engineers tell me that they don't think the FM signal itself can eclipse a 128kbps mp3 file/stream, (they generally say FM = mp3 at anywhere from 64 to 96kbps, usually)

i think the 128 and 96 sound very good for music, while the 32 will do in a pinch, (more like AM radio) and [user-side] bandwidth conservation doesn't seem to matter nearly as much anymore at these rates, as even phones and so on can tune in to the stream.

we don't actually use anything other than winamp and the dsp/shoutcast to stream. we did some simple htaccess code hacks to get WMP to play them, thats all those links are meant to do, launch WMP and successfully play the streams, which WMP can't without the hacks.

the new tools are here:

http://www.shoutcast.com/broadcast-tools

i am confused as to 1.9.2 vs 2.0.2 but in any case, newer versions should have the latest encoding codecs in them. i think i am using the buggy 1.9.1 at the moment.

PENN STATE Radio or http://www.LION-Radio.org/
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Old 7th December 2010, 08:51   #13
Qmusica
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Hi, we run 128k mp3 alongside FM, and the audio quality and transparency is far superior on the FM. We achieve this by eliminating ALL processing from the chain (I've tried Orbans in the past), and normalising all audio files individually. NO processor can, or will ever be able to, take a section of music and optimise it's "volume" without screwing up it's dynamics. The problem is that most "tekies" cannot hear this difference. Also, there's a LOT of bullshit put out there by equipment manufacturers! If your using live mic's, then each mic should be processed independently. Apart from that, 99% of stations sound far cooler without overall processing, however expensive it is!

RE: AAC; I'm considering adding a 48k AAC+ stream, purely for mobiles. I would like to convert all my streams to AAC+ at some point, but I can't see the compatibility issues being resolved for a few more years.
My own tests deduce that 128k AAC+ = 192k mp3.
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Old 7th December 2010, 11:53   #14
port66
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try a low bitrate mono mp3 stream, they usally sound better, but it depends on the music
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Old 7th May 2017, 21:55   #15
radiokkmo
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Adts-acc

Hello Group. I have stations streaming at 128 kbs and I also simulcast on another 32 bps port. Right now I am testing a free internet port that limits at 32 kbs. So I am streaming at ADTS-AAC with great results that listeners that have limited band width can enjoy the station if 128 kbs can't be achieved. I have worked with ADTS-ACC for years. It sounds like 96 kbs plus.

Larry
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