I've got lots of CD's that have been backed up to lossless AAC. This is the archive.
Is there any physical reason why I should choose one format over another, when i convert down for portable listening? I will probably go for 320 MP3, or the equivalent in AAC.
At bitrates that high, it really doesn't matter whether you use MP3 or AAC, but as saratoga said before, 320 kbit/s could be considered overkill for a portable player (or more specifically for the usual listening conditions).AAC mostly has its advantages in bitrate regions below ~120 kbit/s. However, at a certain quality level, the AAC encoders use Spectral Band Replication for high frequency reproduction (a mode called HE-AAC), which might drain your battery faster than the "regular" LC-AAC mode.
160k VBR is probably a good balance. For MP3 lame is recommended, for AAC Nero or iTunes are both good.
I haven't tried them at low bitrates, but I recently did some ABXing, aiming for transparency. While LAME MP3 was pretty much transparent at V3, AAC at a similar bitrate (170-180) was still easily ABXable, with both Nero and Quicktime.
I haven't tried them at low bitrates, but I recently did some ABXing, aiming for transparency. While LAME MP3 was pretty much transparent at V3, AAC at a similar bitrate (170-180) was still easily ABXable, with both Nero and Quicktime.It was only one sample so I can't draw any definite conclusions, all I'd advise is that you do some testing of your own to see/hear what works best for you. Compatibility is still in favor of MP3, but eventually that depends on the devices you use.
@ C.R.Helmrich: Sure. Would you mind converting it for me, since I don't have Winamp (or its encoder) at hand? There's a FLAC included in that Mediafire link, which is the same I also uploaded here (original).(Or let me know how to do that in Foobar.)
I can do that tomorrow, since it seems a new Winamp (and AAC encoder) version will be available then.
*I'm wondering if it could be due to something simple like loudness/amplitude, which perhaps other encoders don't convert as accurately, but Winamp does...
Don't know if it still does, though.