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  • s8n
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
hi team....... i am heavily into music and sound quality.....i use FLAC by default , but i use MP3 to test and review new bands as MP3 is very compatible....

i need a MP3 decoder , that is the best in the scene ..... in terms of sound quality

any help is appreciated

s8n

  • s8n
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #1
oh i mean a player or codec.......

  • sh1leshk4
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #2
Hardware players like iPod or software players like Winamp?

If u're talking hardware, I can't recommend anything since I've only used a Creative Jukebox Zen.
(to those who wants to laugh I'm using a Creative, laugh already...)

If it's software, I don't think there'd be any difference between playing it over Winamp, fb2k, or any other multimedia player.
Well, the playback quality really depends on your audio card, speakers, and/or headphones.
(assuming it's playing the same file)

Unless u're asking about a codec to encode songs to MP3, then it should be LAME.
Recommended version of LAME and settings can be viewed on one of the pinned threads.

  • s8n
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #3
im talking Pc software........the best MP3 decoding/playing software available

  • stephanV
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #4
I think all mp3 decoders should practically (and probably theoretically too) give the same output, hence there is no quality difference. So everything is depending on other factors as your hardware, which falls outside of the scope of your question and concern.
"We cannot win against obsession. They care, we don't. They win."

  • Axon
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #5
That depends on what bitrate you're talking about.

  • stephanV
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #6
how does it depend on that?
"We cannot win against obsession. They care, we don't. They win."

  • xmixahlx
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #7

  • NIN9
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #8
There is an alternative Winamp 5 decoder plugin out there (ochtans mpg123) , that aimes quality.

Check this thread

It would be more efficent when you use the right encoder or software.
Write a small advice for the bands you review which software they should use.

LAME Drop is the easiest MP3 encoder I know so far, just drag and drop the wav file you want to have in MP3 (using lame 3.96.1 compile), in the encoding options context menu you can change the quality you want.

And again here is a list of recommended LAME settings

--alt-preset standard & --alt-preset extreme are enough for normal users,
when want EVEN better quality than go to a lossless format.

(btw use the search fuction on these forums ;-) )

  • johny5
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #9
Quote
http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index....showtopic=17728
later
[a href="index.php?act=findpost&pid=308620"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Sorry to go a little ot, but this question is about the above thread, and i dont want to revive a year old thread.
I looked at this and it is all about dithering. I read that the foobar dithering is based on ssrc and on somebodies suggestion.  Could somebody give some more info on what kind of dithering and noiceshaping exactly has been applied.  I like to use it to .

I hope the dithering algo from ssrc has been copied with care since the ssrc dithering code has some major bugs in it which i have reported earlier.
  • Last Edit: 24 June, 2005, 01:40:12 PM by johny5

  • Skymmer
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #10
If you are looking for highest decoding quality then Apollo for you. Since version 37zl it features the best at the moment decoding precise with the RMS level 7.169×10−10 and maximum difference 1.192×10−7. More details here:
http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index....topic=30009&hl=
The info in that topic is little bit outdated and version mentioned there is 37zh.
Another high quality decoder is MPADec. Binary can be taken here
The MPADec results are RMS level 2.28x10-9 and max difference 1.192x10-7
Apollo homepage is here.
I'm also did a little test with the most well known decoders/decoding engines to see how they're treat freeformat streams and Lame tag for gappless decoding.

Code: [Select]
                    Lame tag   Free format
-------------------------------------------
Lame                 N          N
Winamp (in_mp3)      N          N
Winamp (in_mpg123)   Y          N
Winamp (in_mad)      N          Y
mpg123               N          N
MAD                  N          Y
MPADec               Y          Y
Apollo               N          Y
Foobar (mpglib)      Y          N
Foobar (MAD)         Y          N
XMPlay               Y?         N
[/font]

In my opinion MPADec is the choice. It supports freeformat and Lame tag providing also extremly high quality.
  • Last Edit: 24 June, 2005, 08:16:07 PM by Skymmer
Gabber, Jazz and IDM

  • rjamorim
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #11
Quote
Code: [Select]
                    Lame tag   Free format
-------------------------------------------
Lame                 N          N
[/font][a href="index.php?act=findpost&pid=308680"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


No Lame Tag in Lame? That's curious 

As for free format: Anyone actually uses it extensively? (or at all...)
Get up-to-date binaries of Lame, AAC, Vorbis and much more at RareWares:
http://www.rarewares.org

  • 2Bdecided
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #12
It would be possible to make a decoder which matched the MPEG compliance decodes perfectly, but still caused audible problems with other bitstreams - simply because the MPEG compliance streams do not test every possible decoding issue.

Cheers,
David.

  • William
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #13
I have the impression that the difference of decoding quality between different decoders is not easily audible in normal listening conditions. I would rather consider the features (such as support for RG) instead.

  • neoufo51
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #14
Quote
I have the impression that the difference of decoding quality between different decoders is not easily audible in normal listening conditions. I would rather consider the features (such as support for RG) instead.
[a href="index.php?act=findpost&pid=308717"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

If you want both, then I suggest the foobar2000 0.9 beta. There is really nothing more feature rich than that player.

  • Skymmer
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #15
Quote
As for free format: Anyone actually uses it extensively? (or at all...)


I think no but anyway additional features are always good, isn't it? 
Gabber, Jazz and IDM

best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #16
Where can one get a Win32 exec of MPADec?  The Sourceforge page for it has no files and the link john33 provided in that old discussion doesn't work anymore.
"Have you ever been with a woman? It's like death. You moan, you scream and then you start to beg for mercy, for salvation"

  • rjamorim
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #17
Get up-to-date binaries of Lame, AAC, Vorbis and much more at RareWares:
http://www.rarewares.org

best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #18
Quote
http://pessoal.onda.com.br/rjamorim/mpadec.zip
[a href="index.php?act=findpost&pid=308890"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


Thanks!  I purchased some albums in mp3 format a while back and it always helps to get the best out of them.
"Have you ever been with a woman? It's like death. You moan, you scream and then you start to beg for mercy, for salvation"

  • Enig123
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #19
Does there any foobar2000 mp3 plugin based on mpadec lib exist?

  • rjamorim
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #20
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Thanks!  I purchased some albums in mp3 format a while back and it always helps to get the best out of them. [a href="index.php?act=findpost&pid=309015"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


Quote
Does there any foobar2000 mp3 plugin based on mpadec lib exist?[a href="index.php?act=findpost&pid=309019"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


...and the paranoia starts anew.

Really, do you guys believe you'll ever be able to notice the difference between MPAdec, mpg123, MAD, in_mp3, Apollo...?
Get up-to-date binaries of Lame, AAC, Vorbis and much more at RareWares:
http://www.rarewares.org

  • moozooh
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #21
And what about decoding speed?
Infrasonic Quartet + Sennheiser HD650 + Microlab Solo 2 mk3. 

  • LMS
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #22
Well, if you are just going to listen to the MP3s then mpadec is fairly useless, since all it can do in present form is decode to a wave file. To save MP3s to audio CD format, it may be of use, but one wonders what sort of reduction to 16 bits is used to make the wave. The only documentation I could find is the usage text in the executable, which makes no mention of dithering or noise shaping. Probably just truncates.

Anyway, why would you rely on software that is called "pre-alpha"? Just use either of the decoders available for Foobar (mpglib or MAD) and turn on the dithering and noise shaping if outputting at 16 bits. The "paranoia" road is a waste of time and life is short.
  • Last Edit: 26 June, 2005, 04:41:35 PM by LMS

  • Enig123
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #23
Quote
Quote
Does there any foobar2000 mp3 plugin based on mpadec lib exist?[a href="index.php?act=findpost&pid=309019"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


...and the paranoia starts anew.

Really, do you guys believe you'll ever be able to notice the difference between MPAdec, mpg123, MAD, in_mp3, Apollo...?
[a href="index.php?act=findpost&pid=309066"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


No. But the ability of error recovering of MAD lib is better than mpg123. I've tested both with some mp3s with errors, the one MAD lib can recover correctly sounds pops when decoding with mpg123 lib.

I hope this mpadec lib can do better error correcting job and be faster than MAD anyhow.

  • neoufo51
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best MP3 decoder... for sound quality
Reply #24
i guess then there is no real difference in quality between all these decoders?