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Topic: AAC "iTunes encoded only", for car head-unit (Read 4667 times) previous topic - next topic
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AAC "iTunes encoded only", for car head-unit

Am looking at purchasing a Pioneer car head-unit, want to feed it AAC on a USB stick, looking at the manual the specs are as follows:

MPEG-4 AAC (iTunes encoded only) (.m4a)
(Ver. 7.7 and earlier)

These new car head-units, not just from Pioneer, go on and on about their iTunes compatibility, which drives me up the wall and makes me wonder how much $ is wasted on that rubbish, but that's another story.

My query is, what are the ramifications of the above for using Foobar and Nero to generate AACs? I know that Nero is standards compliant etc, so how much do its settings have to be mangled (if at all) for it to fit in with this iTunes madness?

Does the above just translate to "LC only" and "change the file extension from .mp4 to .m4a", or is there something else? What about the Apple AAC "VBR" (really ABR) monkey business?

AAC "iTunes encoded only", for car head-unit

Reply #1
Probably just means they have only done testing with iTunes encoded AACs, so if you use another encoder and it doesn't work they won't provide you with support.

It doesn't mean it won't work though, just they won't help you if you have a problem.

AAC "iTunes encoded only", for car head-unit

Reply #2
My Kenwood deck said the same thing when I purchased it back in 2006.  It said it would work with "iTunes AAC files" only, and not the 128kbps DRMed ones either.  It turned out that other AAC encoded files worked just as well.  Their tags had to be iTunes compatible for them to play though, that was about it.

Do you have access to this deck at a store such as Best Buy?  I suggest that you encode some files (with your AAC encoder of choice), put them on a USB stick, take it to the store, and try to play them.  That is exactly what I did before purchasing my Kenwood deck.  I encoded files using iTunes AAC CBR, iTunes AAC VBR_constrained, Nero AAC ABR, Nero AAC VBR, Nero AAC CBR, and QuickTime AAC VBR_constrained (true VBR settings hadn't been released back then).  All the files played except the QuickTime one (due to the *.mp4 file name).  I had to rename the file to *.m4a and add the track's tag in iTunes.  Then it worked.

AAC "iTunes encoded only", for car head-unit

Reply #3
It sounds like it only works with AAC files that uses the .m4a extension and the iTunes format tags. You can use mp4box to recreate MP4 to iTunes compatable files.

Also Sony's new walkman players at some shops i've seen on display state that they play iTunes AAC files only, but alot of users say they work with Nero AAC files aswell.
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