As I've heard numerous times, lossy-to-lossy is BAD, I know this, please don't point this out anymore, it's an established point.However, I'm looking to find out, what happens in this given situation:FLAC->MP3 320 CBR->MP3 192 CBRthat is different fromFLAC->MP3 192 CBROh, but you lose quality between 320->192... YES, but you lose even more quality between FLAC->192. Of course, I do NOT know how encoders work, but I'm tired of people not knowing about transcoders try to tell me that "it's just different and i will not tell you how". My very simplistic view is that it is a layer cake, FLAC being 5 layers, 320 being 4 layer and 192 being 2 layers, and that with 320->192 you're just removing another layer. I know this is wrong, and I'm trying to find out what is really going on in transcoding, that makes the two things different.Thanks to anyone willing to help me with this
As a very general explanation, MP3 works by replacing audio data with "close enough" data. If you've taken some science courses, think of this as reducing the number of significant figures for parts of the audio spectrum deemed unimportant.When you re-encode to a lower bitrate, the MP3 encoder doesn't know that some sections are of the audio were approximated and will apply a new approximation that might change the value to something even further from its original value. Or, put another way, the second MP3 encoder can't tell the difference between legitimately important audio and audio that was distorted by the first encoder.In theory, an MP3->MP3 downcoder would be written that reads the scalefactors from the first file and never adds precision, only reduces it further. This has been discussed numerous times on Hydrogenaudio, but to my knowledge there has never been an implementation of it.