Try explaining to the majority of idevice users why lossless is better they just wont have anything of it when all they will see is larger files, shorter batter life and wont won't hear any sonic improvements over the lossy.
Unless Apple has determined that they will continue to add to their profits by still offering the outmoded and competing concept of local storage, the iPod classic will be discontinued. It seems pretty obvious to me that Apple is not the least bit interested in pushing lossless to the mobile market.
Did anyone else notice how the PDF also mentioned that Sound Check can be applied across albums (e.g DSOTM)? This is news to me.
I do however hope that Apple is trying to put a system in place to accept high quality masters in the hope that they move to providing lossless at some point. Short of actually providing lossless this whole mastered for iTunes thing seems like yet another way to market a new way to sell the same music, and sadly I don't even see a concrete jump in technology here, I don't really see what it is guaranteeing at all.
I don't see how continuing to serve the mobile market would contradict cashing in on the stationary market.
The quality problem is not data reduction but the fact that when you run a squashed masters with true peak >0 dBFS through a lossy encoder it can produce some nasty results.
Or, Apple could add an "automatically convert to AAC when syncing to iPods" option to iTunes. Either way, I think they'd manage just fine.
Why are my songs taking extra long to download? Why is my HDD all of a sudden 3 times fuller?
Well.. I think generally speaking ABX is always requested to identify any difference, since are usually slight.I mean: AAC 256 don't sound bad at all.. maybe different when compared to the orginal source.I'm just curious to understand if there is or not a real benefit, as I suppose, to encode from a better source when the goal is to stay as close as possible to the CD sound.
"Shorter battery life" is not an issue at all though.
Having read the "Mastered for iTunes" .pdf, my understanding is that Apple are requesting that recording companies provide iTunes with the best source material possible, not a replication of "CD sound". In this way, if the master supplied to iTunes has had care taken to represent the original intent of the artist, and that artist, producer and engineering team care about quality, the iTunes encodes stand a good chance of sounding very good indeed.