Skip to main content

Poll

If I [ever am to] download files in lossless formats with overkill resolution, ...

I keep the file I received, out of principle. (If I currently have compatibility issues, any conversion is "temporary" until I can replace by the original).
I never change resolution. I possibly recompress to one favourite codec that supports it.
Like 2, except that resolutions that are "already wrong" are not sacred. Who wants to keep a in 192/24 a digitized bootleg tape recorded in audience?
I hardly change resolution, except when I must for compatibility.
I usually downconvert to "something useful" (say, CD-resolution) in a lossless format
I usually convert to a lossy format anyway. CDDA is also "overkill resolution".
I also usually transcode overkill-bitrate lossies - like 320-kbps mp3s from Amazon - to a lower bitrate.
Topic: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert? (Read 2584 times) previous topic - next topic
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #25
I actually upsample all my CDDA files to 24/192 PCM because it sou..

Just kidding. I keep stuff the way I got it on my HDDs but always resample/dither hi res stuff for my media player and phone.
The Loudness War is over. Now it's a hopeless occupation.

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #26
I avoid anything over the standard CDDA (i.e. 44/16) as it just wastes storage space. I know some say storage space is cheap, and they are right, but it's more of the thought of wasting the space to begin with and we are not talking a small bit either as they seem to be roughly double the size.

but since we are on the topic... say one has some audio files above the CDDA standard, how does one properly convert those back to standard CDDA?

@leonsk

Quote
Am I the only one here who converts to a lossy format and doesn't keep the original ? o_0

Well it is a good idea to keep your lossless files unless your pretty darn sure your not going to need to convert again.

plus, with storage space being cheap... it's even that much less reason to delete the lossless files especially if you ain't got some massive collection that's going to burn up a boatload of storage space.
For music (especially on-the-go)...
-I suggest Opus @ 96kbps (or... 64kbps minimum, 128kbps maximum). *preferred choice*
-I suggest AAC(Apple) @ 96kbps (q45 TVBR) or 128kbps (q64 TVBR). *secondary choice*
-I use Foobar2000 (/w Encoders Pack etc) to convert FLAC to Opus/AAC(Apple).

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #27
No option, case by case there are only two variants, leave album in original resolution and encoding or convert to Apple's AAC downsampled by SoX to whole divisor of original sampling rate.

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #28
@ThaCrip

I don't see why you'd need the original FLAC after converting to a lossy format at high bitrates, at least I've never needed them.
As for the HDD space being cheap, you've answered yourself in the second sentence of your post.

Please, can everyone who thinks that hard-disk space is that cheap buy a spare one for me next time?

+1  :D

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #29
@ThaCrip

I don't see why you'd need the original FLAC after converting to a lossy format at high bitrates, at least I've never needed them.
As for the HDD space being cheap, you've answered yourself in the second sentence of your post.
Because you'll never need to re-rip the CD again if you've got them in FLAC and stored on a backup HDD (ideally two).

Also, for example, if you want to convert them to a different format for usage on a device that can't play high bitrate MP3s or any AAC or Opus formats.

If the HDD that has all the lossy files dies, you'll have to re-rip. If you've got the lossless files (I use FLAC) on another HDD (preferably at least two other HDDs) then you can transcode easily.

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #30
Do you keep upsampled LP's.

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #31
@ThaCrip

I don't see why you'd need the original FLAC after converting to a lossy format at high bitrates, at least I've never needed them.
As for the HDD space being cheap, you've answered yourself in the second sentence of your post.
Because you'll never need to re-rip the CD again if you've got them in FLAC and stored on a backup HDD (ideally two).

Also, for example, if you want to convert them to a different format for usage on a device that can't play high bitrate MP3s or any AAC or Opus formats.

If the HDD that has all the lossy files dies, you'll have to re-rip. If you've got the lossless files (I use FLAC) on another HDD (preferably at least two other HDDs) then you can transcode easily.
One other thing I'd like to add:
Some transport layers only work with lossless in a practical sense (like AptX via BlueTooth). However the conversion happens on-the-fly, using lossless sources for that is always preferable.
Furthermore, there are transparent conversion solutions available. For instance you keep your audio as FLAC files, and you can on-demand transcode them to MP3, which is then streamed, etc. This kinda saves the space you'd otherwise need for FLAC + MP3, so there's no need for file duplication. There are filesystem-level layers to do that, similar how transparent hard disk encryption works.

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #32
There are filesystem-level layers to do that, similar how transparent hard disk encryption works.

Any good ones? Only I know is mp3fs ...
“It sounded bad to me. Digital. They have digital. What is digital? And it’s very complicated, you have to be Albert Einstein to figure it out.”
- Donald Trump, May 2017


Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #34
There are filesystem-level layers to do that, similar how transparent hard disk encryption works.
Any good ones? Only I know is mp3fs ...
I'll have to check myself. The one I've used a couple years ago was essentially an NFS module. No idea how that works on Windows, though, I've only ever used it on Linux.

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #35
I'll generally keep downloaded files in the format they were originally presented, except in the case of uncompressed PCM (converting to FLAC) or when conversion is necessary for compatibility. Barring those conditions, any necessary down-sampling is handled on playback.

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #36
@jaybeee

Quote
Because you'll never need to re-rip the CD again if you've got them in FLAC and stored on a backup HDD (ideally two).

That falls in the same category, why re-rip them again ?
In the case of a HDD failure FLAC or lossy doesn't make a difference, a re-rip is in order.

Quote
Also, for example, if you want to convert them to a different format for usage on a device that can't play high bitrate MP3s or any AAC or Opus formats.

I also convert to a lower bitrate lossy format (from FLAC) for my portable devices so again there's no need to keep the FLACs.

Quote
If the HDD that has all the lossy files dies

In which case it'd make no difference for me because they both would be on the same HDD.

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #37
I also convert to a lower bitrate lossy format (from FLAC) for my portable devices so again there's no need to keep the FLACs.

I don't get this. If you convert from FLAC to a lossy format why throw away the FLAC file? It is essentially your backup. Also if you need the file in a different format, using the FLAC file is certainly better than using the lossy file.

IIRC Vorbis had the ability to change bitrate of an existing file, but I never saw that it action.

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #38
@jaybeee
Quote
Because you'll never need to re-rip the CD again if you've got them in FLAC and stored on a backup HDD (ideally two).
That falls in the same category, why re-rip them again ?
In the case of a HDD failure FLAC or lossy doesn't make a difference, a re-rip is in order.
Having the files as lossless, gives you much greater flexibility when handling them. You never need to touch your physical media again, ideally, no matter what you want to do with them. Ripping CDs or other media takes time, and you need to be able to get them from whatever storage, like a shelf or box or whatever, and handle them. With files, copying them takes essentially no time, converting them is also rather simple, and can often be done on-the-fly. Backing up a lossless file: no problem, backing up physical media: Well, that's the lossless file, isn't it? Or do you want to duplicate your physical media using M-Disc or possibly something better? Well, that sounds like a waste of time and money to me…

Furthermore: When is the last time you used optical drives for the last time? I almost never use them as handling files over networks is just so much more convenient. I only have one optical drive right now, which is a USB-3 external BD recorder, and combo drive. It lives in a drawer and comes out every blue moon if I have to read from optical media or record on one.

Also, tbh, my time is much to valuable to re-rip optical media each time I need a different format. I rather spend the tiny amount extra on a couple of TB more to keep my FLAC files, and convert them either on-the-fly, or through a streaming solution whenever I need them.
Also, since space is so valuable to you, then why not use transparent compression by default? It'll surely save you a TB or two.

Quote
Also, for example, if you want to convert them to a different format for usage on a device that can't play high bitrate MP3s or any AAC or Opus formats.
I also convert to a lower bitrate lossy format (from FLAC) for my portable devices so again there's no need to keep the FLACs.
Except if you have a new device which can handle higher bitrates. Then it's back to ripping instead of a quick transcode from lossless, or simply using the lossless file itself?

Quote
If the HDD that has all the lossy files dies
In which case it'd make no difference for me because they both would be on the same HDD.
Depends on how you use storage. In my case it's much more likely that the physical media - in most cases CDs - will perish before the files.

Btw. Just for clarity:
Many people confuse high-availability solutions with backups anyway.
Backups are by definition not alterable. If you can change or delete a file from whatever drive or alter it, it's not a backup. If we're talking about something like a RAID, that's a high-availability solution. In most cases, it's perfectly adequate for things like music, etc.
Proper backups is something I don't even trust myself with, for that I have a company that does that for me. And they better be insured, because should they ever lose my stuff, the collateral would be killer.

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #39
It's funny how many people here aren't able to tell the difference between a decent lossy encode at smth like aac at 160 kbps and uncompressed and still they keep purchasing lossless or even hires files just for "the peace of mind". Any newcomer's decision to encode their music with some insane settings like 320 kbps AAC for their "peace of mind" is highly criticised, though.
I guess, the real question should not be "whether you keep your hirez downloads", but rather "why do you even consider buying those files in the first place?". Especially after so many spears been broken, spicy jokes made, thousands of pages on the internet and numerous tests and reports that prove "hires' audio doesn't have any audible benefit. Oh, the peace of mind...
I find it a little hypocritical.
Now that we know that NOONE here actually trusts their music collection with lossy encoding (with no lossless backup) it's a lot more fun to read some threads about lossy audio, especially the so-called "advice section".
PS I download my music from iTunes, yeah.

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #40
It's funny how many people here aren't able to tell the difference between a decent lossy encode at smth like aac at 160 kbps and uncompressed and still they keep purchasing lossless or even hires files just for "the peace of mind". Any newcomer's decision to encode their music with some insane settings like 320 kbps AAC for their "peace of mind" is highly criticised, though. Oh, the peace of mind...
I find it a little hypocritical.

PS I download my music from iTunes, yeah.

Well I figure if one is going to buy music, it's always best to go lossless as this way you can convert it to whatever lossy format you want in the future without worrying about loss of quality and still have the lossless file for archiving. like it's always a good thing to have a lossless file to fall back on for future re-ripping as it future proofs you.

so while AAC has been quite mature for years now, unless one is pretty darn sure they are not going to need another lossy audio format it's best to have the lossless file to guarantee you will be future-proofed if lossy audio formats change etc.

also, I can easily see why someone would criticize someone ripping to say 320kbps AAC as it's clearly overkill for a lossy file. hell, I think even iTunes uses something like 256kbps CVBR which is already a little overkill. that's why I would rather just have a lossless file and then make your own lossy file to something more reasonable like 96-160kbps as if one ever needs to change bit rate or formats they can easily do it with the lossless file otherwise your forced to convert from one lossy format to another which is generally best avoided if possible as it's not the proper way to rip things and can lower sound quality further etc.

so I think that's why people criticize someone using super high bit rate lossy files as it defeats the purpose if lossy files in the first place which is to basically get the smallest possible file size at a transparent or near transparent level of sound quality or thereabouts.

p.s. I avoid anything over standard CDDA since it's a total waste of space as even though storage space is cheap, it's the thought of wasting storage space with zero benefits.
For music (especially on-the-go)...
-I suggest Opus @ 96kbps (or... 64kbps minimum, 128kbps maximum). *preferred choice*
-I suggest AAC(Apple) @ 96kbps (q45 TVBR) or 128kbps (q64 TVBR). *secondary choice*
-I use Foobar2000 (/w Encoders Pack etc) to convert FLAC to Opus/AAC(Apple).

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #41
@jaybeee

Quote
Because you'll never need to re-rip the CD again if you've got them in FLAC and stored on a backup HDD (ideally two).

That falls in the same category, why re-rip them again ?
In the case of a HDD failure FLAC or lossy doesn't make a difference, a re-rip is in order.
That's why you need them stored in at least two places  ;)

I think you simply need to choose the download that suits you. I personally go for FLAC at CD quality. If the download is only available in a "higher res", say 24-bit or 48kHz, then I'll keep it like that. I play most of my music via my PC. Any portable devices will get a lossy encoded downsampled (if appropriate) version.

@jaybeee
Quote
Also, for example, if you want to convert them to a different format for usage on a device that can't play high bitrate MP3s or any AAC or Opus formats.

I also convert to a lower bitrate lossy format (from FLAC) for my portable devices so again there's no need to keep the FLACs.
You're ignoring what I said. If a new device doesn't support the lossy format you originally chose or you want to use a different format like Opus to cram even more onto a device (like a mobile phone) then you've got the lossless files to transcode to. But sure, if you use mp3s then you'll be safe enough.

@jaybeee
Quote
If the HDD that has all the lossy files dies
In which case it'd make no difference for me because they both would be on the same HDD.
 
which is why I said at least two HDDs.

Obviously you can and will do as you please. You asked the question so there are my opinions as well as others.

Those of us that have lossless and lossy files are in a minority now, since most people just stream music via the various services (Spotify being the big one). No issues with HDDs failing etc. The only issue is if the service were to disappear. Maybe that's an option for you?

Good luck

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #42
I guess, the real question should not be "whether you keep your hirez downloads", but rather "why do you even consider buying those files in the first place?".

Because they contain music. 

That is the answer to the question you asked. I suppose you intended to ask "why do you choose to get the same music, same mastering, in a hirez format?" which is a different question that does not apply equally often.

Myself, I prefer (not in order of priority)
- to get a checksummed format with inherent gaplessness, not just as a hack that is "usually" supported
- not to pay royalties for the format (rather, I want to pay to the artist)
- not to deal with certain applications (iTunes is one)
- not to get a too stupid resolution
- not to tamper with the audio I actually got from the artist, if applicable - I know this is "kinda as irrational as buying a litho", but heck ...
- to get a compatible, future-proof format. (DRM-freeness is part of that.) One will never get rid of MP3/AAC anyway, I guess - but I doubt that MQA will be around forever.

“It sounded bad to me. Digital. They have digital. What is digital? And it’s very complicated, you have to be Albert Einstein to figure it out.”
- Donald Trump, May 2017

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #43
By saying "those files" I meant hires files. I thought it was obvious.
- you get gapless playback with aac, it's supported on everything released for the last decade. How it works "under the hood" doesn't really matter.
- no royalties for the format, but paying a fat extra for the "resolution" is no problem.
- you can use iTunes for purchasing only. After that you can do whatever you want with your files.
- agree
- not sure if I get this one, but you don't need to tamper with anything. Everything's been already done for you (24/44.1 > aac 256), you just touch the screen and there you go. Does it get any easier than that?
- you get an ultracompatible and as futureproof a format as it can be. (DRM-freeness is part of that).

 

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #44
By saying "those files" I meant hires files. I thought it was obvious. [...] but paying a fat extra for the "resolution"

And you did not mean "those files chosen over other files at a fat extra cost without getting any audible difference"? Because it certainly looks like that, don't you agree?
“It sounded bad to me. Digital. They have digital. What is digital? And it’s very complicated, you have to be Albert Einstein to figure it out.”
- Donald Trump, May 2017

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #45
Porcus, is there an audible difference between hires and  iTunes' aac? Honestly, do you hear any?
Regarding the OP, if one has already bought hires files, he already paid the extra for inaudible ultrasonics so he might wanna keep them (looks pointless to me, but whatever). Converting them down to something audibly transparent but more manageable (stripping away the inaudible ultrasonics and reducing word length, chopping off the precious content below -100 dbFS) kills the purpose of buying hires music.

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #46
Porcus, is there an audible difference between hires and  iTunes' aac? Honestly, do you hear any?

Have a look at https://hydrogenaud.io/index.php/topic,98199.msg866222.html#msg866222 .  The record company requested two low dynamic-range masters, one for CD (dr = 6) and one even lower (dr = 5) for iTunes.
Swanö included on the CD the iTunes master as mp3@192, as well as the full dynamic range (dr = 11) master as mp3@320.
* The latter is closest to what the artist intended, so - everything else equal - that would be the "best version" of the work. It has a downside: an inferior file format (note, "file format" is not the same as codec) - and unless I love .mka, I cannot really get rid of it.
* There is no reason to rank the "iTunes" master above the CDDA, is there? Worse corporate-policy mangling with the signal, and lesser format. (I would most likely not be able to ABX the mp3@192 files from iTunes' delivery format, but that is a question of what is lowest rank - not what is highest.)

Your reasoning is flawed unless you can always buy from iTunes the same mastering at lower price as what you can get "CDDA or above" for.


Regarding the OP, if one has already bought hires files, he already paid the extra for inaudible ultrasonics

Have I? Or have I maybe already gotten the available version? The poll is not about "how much would you pay extra for a hirez version over an otherwise identical CDDA/AAC assuming the latter exists at a lower price", it is about what you (would) do if and when a hirez file for whatever reason finds its way to your hard drive.
Among my higher-than 16/48k files, you find
* A 24/96k purchased from Nine Inch Nails. That was what the artist offered, and I keep the resolution.
* Bandcamp downloads (Bandcamp caveat here, I haven't bought much there since) - the price is the same for all formats, and sometimes the artist has uploaded hirez. Again, I just keep the resolution.
* 32-bit floating-point .wav files that the artist uploaded to Soundcloud. For whatever reason. Downloaded for free. Kept as 32-bit floating-point.
* 32-bit floating-point and DSD files from http://www.2l.no/hires/ . Well I admit that downloading more than one format is more because I was curious, but if 32-bit floating-point were the only thing they offered for download - then I wouldn't bother to downconvert.
“It sounded bad to me. Digital. They have digital. What is digital? And it’s very complicated, you have to be Albert Einstein to figure it out.”
- Donald Trump, May 2017

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #47
* 32-bit floating-point and DSD files...
* 32-bit floating-point .wav files that the artist uploaded to Soundcloud. For whatever reason...
For whatever reason besides audio quality. I guess, if artist uploaded it as 384/32, you'd keep it that way. It's also worth nothing to mention that artist probably just doesn't have a damn clue and uploads "straight outta DAW" as is, cause "why bother?".
That also reminded me of:
- to get a compatible (DSD???), future-proof format.
- not to get a too stupid resolution!

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #48
That also reminded me of:
- to get a compatible (DSD???), future-proof format.
- not to get a too stupid resolution!

Yes. Conflicting priorities. Life is full of them.
I prefer to stick to the signal I got (MP3? I have a bias against lossy transcoding. 24/48k? I have a bias against lossy transcoding, but I can store as losslessly as FLAC. DSD? I have have a bias against lossy transcoding, but I can store as WavPack (... I think!). Real Audio/Cook? I have a bias against lossy transcoding.)
I prefer certain file formats over others. (MP3? Not a good file format, though there are worse on this list, and remuxing won't help much. 24/48k ALAC in MP4? Convert to FLAC. DSD? Not good. WavPack. RA/Cook? Loathsome, consider remuxing.)
I prefer compatibility. (MP3? More compatible as .mp3 than remuxed into a container. 24/48k ALAC in MP4? 24/48k FLAC is IMHO not only better, but also so compatible that I need not consider 24/48k WAV. DSD-ISO? Bad, even in WavPack. RA/Cook? Hate it, at least better in .mka where I can tag it.)
I prefer reasonable not too unreasonable resolutions. (MP3 at 32 kbit/sec? Sucks, but there is no way to improve it. 24/48k? Reasonable. DSD? Overkill, certainly. RA/Cook? Grrrrrr.)

Now for the "what to choose", you have to weigh pro et contra. Requires the ability to think twice.
What I actually do? MP3? I keep it. (Should be said, I have experimented with repacking just for fun, and I have never encountered a free-format in the wild.) PCMs up to 96/24? Convert losslessly to FLAC and delete the original.

(DSD???),

"because I was curious".
By the way, the Kielland/Sergej Osadchuk file, which was not uploaded as CDDA, the smallest DSD (as WavPack) is "only" 25 percent larger than the  smallest PCM (as FLAC).


I guess [...] you'd

Going from making claims based on ignorance to making guesses based on ignorance - please keep on improving.
“It sounded bad to me. Digital. They have digital. What is digital? And it’s very complicated, you have to be Albert Einstein to figure it out.”
- Donald Trump, May 2017

Re: Do you keep "hi-rez" downloads as hi-rez, or do you convert?

Reply #49
I see a lot of derision for high bitrates and "peace of mind" thinking.  OK, I accept the consensus that 96K AAC with a good encoder is "good enough".  However, I have more storage than time and I have no need to economize on space, within reason.  I see no reason not to retain higher bitrates, especially for lossy--even that 320kbps MP3 doesn't cost me much space.  I archive everything as it is received or recorded, whether that is MP3, FLAC, DSD or the 24/96 "needle drop".  Then I typically convert to FLAC of one sort or another for convenience and true gapless playback. 

 
SimplePortal 1.0.0 RC1 © 2008-2018