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Topic: Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus? (Read 34223 times) previous topic - next topic
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Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

I've been doign a lot of research into different lossy codecs.  Though most of my collection is ripped FLACs with a very small amount of HDTracks purchases, I need to load all my music onto myu phone now, and need to pick a lossy codec, so I can maximize my storage.

I know Opus was designed for low latency to help with streaming on the Internet, something that does not matter when playing flies on your phone local storage.

Both codecs support gapless playback
Both use Vorbis tags.
Both are supported on Android now

A much as MP3 is pretty universal, lack of native gapless playback support made me cross it off my list.
AAC was a good choice, and I am on Linux.  And I need to go though some hoops with wine to get Apple's AAC encoder to work, whereas Ogg Vorbis is supported out of the box on all Linux distros.

Other than possible bitrate at which transparency is achieved, is there any other reason I would choose Vorbis over Opus or vice versa?

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #1
As far as I know, the is no equivalent to vorbisgain for Opus yet.

I'm on Linux too, and that's the only reason I haven't made the switch from Vorbis to Opus.

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #2
Well, there's a good reason to use Ogg Vorbis.  What bitrate do you encode at?

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #3
What bitrate do you encode at?

It depends on the space I have left on my phone, but right now I use -q3 (112 kb/s). For other uses (PC, TV...) I use -q5 (160 kb/s).

There is nothing wrong with using Vorbis, it's fast, mature, reliable, and quite good even at low bitrates. I use AoTuV with enzo's patches, but even stock libvorbis is very good.

Before I was using AAC-HE encoded with fdk_acc for low bitrates (which I found a bit better than Vorbis for 80-96 kb/s in my ABX tests), but I could not get gapless playback to work reliably on Android (depends on the player), and the ReplayGain implementation is not very flexible (AACGain sets a fixed gain, and you can not change it at playback time).

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #4
Compatibility is better with vorbis and at those bitrates they will have comparable quality.

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #5
Both codecs support gapless playback

That might be true in theory, but last time I checked Vorbis was still the only lossy codec that passed a problematic gapless test. Opus failed, just like MP3 and AAC.
(Though it's not easily audible and good gapless playback depends more on the audio player than the codec. For example Foobar on x86 Windows works great with any codec, but gapless playback on Android can fail even with lossless.)

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #6
loudness-scanner works with opus files if linked against a recent enough taglib.

ffmpeg copies all tags including the REPLAYGAIN ones. The peaks might not be correct. But I wouldn't expect that to matter (if an opus file has a peak > 1.0, the gain would probably be negative anyway).

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #7
Historically I've used Vorbis at quality 2 on my phone, but switched over to Opus a couple of months ago with the same target bitrate. I saved no space obviously, but Opus buys me a little more quality buffer over an already excellent Vorbis. I made the switch purely for subjective reasons as I perceived no issues with Vorbis and would still be happy as a clam using it today. I've observed no real change in quality with the switch (I had no real quality issues with Vorbis at this bitrate) and my gapless audio is just as gapless as it was before.

I'd suggest Vorbis if you intend to play the files from your phone on anything else. If not, Opus all the way. As support for Opus becomes more ubiquitous the Vorbis recommendation will likely go away. Right now, where latency doesn't matter, I basically consider Vorbis and Opus interchangeable for my purposes. I expect Opus support to gradually eclipse Vorbis support on devices so that is the direction I'm trending. All things being equal the only thing Vorbis has going for it today over Opus is the installed base of devices which are compatible. Once that advantage disappears I will consider Vorbis a completely deprecated codec.

Having lossless sources, I always encode to the best option the target device supports.

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #8
Historically I've used Vorbis at quality 2 on my phone, but switched over to Opus a couple of months ago with the same target bitrate.
Since battery life is an important parameter with mobile phones, can you elaborate on that regarding Vorbis vs. Opus? if memory serves me right Opus decoding performance is significantly worse than Vorbis, at least on x86.
It's only audiophile if it's inconvenient.

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #9
I've honestly not noticed a difference in battery usage. Both are harder on my S3 than playing mp3 which it barely notices, but I've never run the thing down by even 25% playing Vorbis or Opus over bluetooth, even through hours of sitting in traffic both ways.

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #10
Last time I've done benchmarks on Opus (128 kbps, stereo, 48 kHz, vbr, full complexity = highest quality) decoder it was economic Moto G smartphone. The battery has lasted ridiculous amount of time. 35 hours 32 minutes.  It was Opus version 1.1.

As far as I can see there is 1.1.1-rc with new ARM optimizations on https://www.opus-codec.org
Saratoga has already reported that now Opus decoder is even faster than Vorbis on ARM9E   
https://www.hydrogenaud.io/forums/index.php...st&p=909049

As for smartphones there wasn't and there won't be any noticeable differences between LC-AAC, Vorbis and Opus because  minimum "Idle" frequency is way too high 200-300 MHz (in some cases 400 MHz already and keep bumping). Too fast, too energy efficient and getting even better http://images.anandtech.com/doci/9330/a53-...curve_575px.png (the graph is from this article)

P.S. Link corrections, grammar and misc stuff.

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #11
There's also the likely resampling from 44.1 kHz to 48 kHz and possibly back.  Though I have the feeling the lossy encoding itself is more likely to be audibly problematic.


Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #13
As far as I can see there is 1.1.1-rc with new ARM optimizations on https://www.opus-codec.org
Saratoga has already reported that now Opus decoder is even faster than Vorbis on ARM9E   
https://www.hydrogenaud.io/forums/index.php...st&p=909049
Interesting, thanks.
It's only audiophile if it's inconvenient.

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #14
There's also the likely resampling from 44.1 kHz to 48 kHz and possibly back.  Though I have the feeling the lossy encoding itself is more likely to be audibly problematic.
I'm glad somebody else mentioned this. I buy CD's. While modern re-sampling programs mentioned at HA are unlikely to add audible distortions or artifacts, the problem is I do not like to re-sample. Why Opus did not include native 44kHz support was a mystery to me (a separate discussion entirely unrelated to this topic).

That being said, I plan to get the newest Vorbis binaries and see how they compare to LAME.
"Something bothering you, Mister Spock?"

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #15
I buy CD's. While modern re-sampling programs mentioned at HA are unlikely to add audible distortions or artifacts, the problem is I do not like to re-sample. Why Opus did not include native 44kHz support was a mystery to me (a separate discussion entirely unrelated to this topic).
The only answer I was able to find is this:[quote author=[JAZ] link=msg=808895 date=1347905024]Opus does not natively support 44Khz. The idea is that since 48Khz can store a 44Khz signal, this simplifies the algorithm. Then, it just stores the original format and size so that a decoder could decode to the same values, but a decoder is allowed to decode at another samplerate.

You might need the --raw-rate 44100 switch to tell it that the input is working at 44Khz so that it resamples.
Else, I believe it might be encoding directly as if it was a 48Khz signal, so playback would sound wrong (Haven't tried and I don't know how the commandline encoder works in this specific case).

You might opt to resample directly in the program feeding the stream (like foobar2000), or let opus resample. I don't know about the internal resampler's quality, but I know it's not bad.[/quote]
I was not following the development of Opus from the beginning and when I get some information I was not able to find a definitive answer if Opus is the successor of Ogg Vorbis.
Sorry for my poor English, I'm trying to get better... ;)
"The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled, was convincing the world he didn't exist."

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #16
In many respects Ogg Opus is the successor to Ogg Vorbis, and was always intended to be.  Vorbis could never fully carry the FOSS flag, so a whole new codec was developed.  It has many potential improvements over Vorbis but these are most apparent in areas you probably don't care about.  Quality at low bitrates is much better, latency is much better, but quality at very high bitrates is still suspect.  Despite being transparent on a majority of test samples at lower bitrates than Vorbis (and virtually every other codec for that matter) it still occasionally stumbles over killer samples and this doesn't seem to be entirely cured at any bitrate.  Despite having written a dedicated Opus plugin myself, it still isn't my preferred codec for music unless I'm trying to cram a lot of music onto limited space for casual listening.  I can't get past knowing that every now and then I'll hear something that may (or may not) be an artefact.  I know they're there lurking and it spoils my enjoyment.

Resampling from 44.1 to 48 should be the least of your worries though

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #17
In many respects Ogg Opus is the successor to Ogg Vorbis, and was always intended to be.  Vorbis could never fully carry the FOSS flag, so a whole new codec was developed.  It has many potential improvements over Vorbis but these are most apparent in areas you probably don't care about.  Quality at low bitrates is much better, latency is much better, but quality at very high bitrates is still suspect.  Despite being transparent on a majority of test samples at lower bitrates than Vorbis (and virtually every other codec for that matter) it still occasionally stumbles over killer samples and this doesn't seem to be entirely cured at any bitrate.  Despite having written a dedicated Opus plugin myself, it still isn't my preferred codec for music unless I'm trying to cram a lot of music onto limited space for casual listening.  I can't get past knowing that every now and then I'll hear something that may (or may not) be an artefact.  I know they're there lurking and it spoils my enjoyment.

Resampling from 44.1 to 48 should be the least of your worries though


Why do you think that Vorbis could never carry the FOSS flag.  Vorbis is supposed to be a patent free codec, whereas there are known patents covering Opus that Xiph.org has negotiated royalty free rights for Opus users.

The Wikipedia article on Ogg Opus:

Quote
As an open format standardized through RFC 6716, a reference implementation called opus-tools is available under the New BSD License, currently the only implementation. The reference has both fixed-point and floating-point optimizations for low- and high-end devices, with SIMD optimizations on platforms that support them. All known software patents which cover Opus are licensed under royalty-free terms.


The Wikipedia article on Ogg Vorbis:

Quote
Knowledge of Vorbis' specifications is in the public domain.[5] Concerning the specification itself, the Xiph.Org Foundation reserves the right to set the Vorbis specification and certify compliance. Its libraries are released under the revised 3-clause BSD license and its tools are released under the GNU General Public License. The libraries were originally released under the GNU Lesser General Public Licence, but a BSD license was later chosen with the endorsement of Richard Stallman.[46] The Xiph.Org Foundation states that Vorbis, like all its developments, is completely free from the licensing or patent issues raised by other proprietary formats such as MP3. Although the Xiph.Org Foundation states it has conducted a patent search that supports its claims, outside parties (notably engineers working on rival formats) have expressed doubt that Vorbis is free of patented technology.[47]

The Xiph.Org Foundation has not released an official statement on the patent status of Vorbis, pointing out that such a statement is technically impossible due to the number and scope of patents in existence and the questionable validity of many of them. Such issues can only be resolved by a court of law.


So it sounds like Vorbis does it's best to be patent free, while Opus does it's best to be best of breed without concerns for being patent free.

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #18
In many respects Ogg Opus is the successor to Ogg Vorbis, and was always intended to be.  Vorbis could never fully carry the FOSS flag, so a whole new codec was developed.  It has many potential improvements over Vorbis but these are most apparent in areas you probably don't care about.  Quality at low bitrates is much better, latency is much better, but quality at very high bitrates is still suspect.  Despite being transparent on a majority of test samples at lower bitrates than Vorbis (and virtually every other codec for that matter) it still occasionally stumbles over killer samples and this doesn't seem to be entirely cured at any bitrate.  Despite having written a dedicated Opus plugin myself, it still isn't my preferred codec for music unless I'm trying to cram a lot of music onto limited space for casual listening.  I can't get past knowing that every now and then I'll hear something that may (or may not) be an artefact.  I know they're there lurking and it spoils my enjoyment.

Resampling from 44.1 to 48 should be the least of your worries though


I used to act the same way.  I was always listening to music and thinking that if I was listening to FLAC the bass would sound better.  Or something else that just kept me from enjoying the music.  Then I took the 20 tracks I listened to most and made vbr 0 MP3 rips and ABXed them against their FLAC counterparts.  At the end of the day I realized, I could not tell a difference on any of my most listened to songs.

I though for sure my classical music tracks would fail and I would spot the MP3.  But I didn't.

I really thank God and my lucky stars that I did that, cause I was on my way down the path of tube amplifiers, vinyl LPs, oxygen free copper cables and other placebophile nonsense.  At the time, I was definitely down the path of eventually buying silver cables and other unneeded stupidity.

So, now I use Ogg Vorbis and rip to ~256K VBR.  Is it overkill?  Probably.  I'm sure I could achieve transparency at a lower bitrate.  But, I really hate doing critical listening and my phone has 192 GB of storage.  I know 256K is good and I know I have the space for it.  So, I'm good with it, and I enjoy my music a lot more, not sitting there and waiting for the imperfections that I now know are never gonna happen.

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #19
I was always listening to music and thinking that if I was listening to FLAC the bass would sound better.  Or something else that just kept me from enjoying the music.  Then I took the 20 tracks I listened to most and made vbr 0 MP3 rips and ABXed them against their FLAC counterparts.  At the end of the day I realized, I could not tell a difference on any of my most listened to songs.

I though for sure my classical music tracks would fail and I would spot the MP3.  But I didn't.


Try doing the same thing at -V3 or even -V4 or -V5, you'll be amazed at what a relatively primitive format (MP3 compared to Ogg Vorbis or AAC, for instance) can do with very little available bitrate, when sufficiently refined in the shape of LAME.

I found that I was able to ABX -V5 against FLAC with some accuracy, -V4 was mostly guessing, and -V3 ended up being completely random guessing.

Maybe there will be a tiny artifact in some specific passage in some specific track, but I've learned to stop worrying by now :-)

Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #20
I was always listening to music and thinking that if I was listening to FLAC the bass would sound better.  Or something else that just kept me from enjoying the music.  Then I took the 20 tracks I listened to most and made vbr 0 MP3 rips and ABXed them against their FLAC counterparts.  At the end of the day I realized, I could not tell a difference on any of my most listened to songs.

I though for sure my classical music tracks would fail and I would spot the MP3.  But I didn't.


Try doing the same thing at -V3 or even -V4 or -V5, you'll be amazed at what a relatively primitive format (MP3 compared to Ogg Vorbis or AAC, for instance) can do with very little available bitrate, when sufficiently refined in the shape of LAME.

I found that I was able to ABX -V5 against FLAC with some accuracy, -V4 was mostly guessing, and -V3 ended up being completely random guessing.

Maybe there will be a tiny artifact in some specific passage in some specific track, but I've learned to stop worrying by now :-)


The ABX test is very liberating.  Almost everyone I talk to that claims they can ABX a FLAC vs a high bit-rate MP3 and are willing to show results will never let ME pick the tracks they ABX.  That obviously have cherry picked the tracks that they know they can spot a difference on and continue to use those few tracks to justify their supposed golden ears.

I've also noticed these golden ears always ABX against MP3s.  I never see them try AAC or Vorbis files.  I wonder if any of the differences they are picking up would not be there if they are using a more modern codec.

Re: Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #21
There's also the likely resampling from 44.1 kHz to 48 kHz and possibly back.   Though I have the feeling the lossy encoding itself is more likely to be audibly problematic.
I'm glad somebody else mentioned this. I buy CD's. While modern re-sampling programs mentioned at HA are unlikely to add audible distortions or artifacts, the problem is I do not like to re-sample. Why Opus did not include native 44kHz support was a mystery to me (a separate discussion entirely unrelated to this topic).

I don't have a reference but I remember reading it had to do with some DACs doing better with sample rates that were 12 kHz * 2^n than with 44.1 kHz.

Supposedly it doesn't matter on good hardware but with cheap DACs they don't do 44.1 kHz as well. Upsampling to 48 kHz improves audio quality on those cheap devices.

I don't know if that is true, but after reading the PONO has what sounded like a similar issue I suspect it is true.


Re: Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #23
Quote from xiphwiki's OpusFAQ
Quote
Note that it's generally preferable for a decoder to output at 48kHz, even when you know the original input was 44.1kHz. This is not only because you can skip resampling, but also because many cheaper audio interfaces have poor quality output for 44.1kHz.

I don't know what he means by "skipping resampling",and I didn't know cheaper audio devices have poor quality output for 44.1kHz.

First post btw,Hello HydrogenAudio!

Re: Does Ogg Vorbis offer any advantages over Ogg Opus?

Reply #24
Quote from xiphwiki's OpusFAQ
Quote
Note that it's generally preferable for a decoder to output at 48kHz, even when you know the original input was 44.1kHz. This is not only because you can skip resampling, but also because many cheaper audio interfaces have poor quality output for 44.1kHz.

I don't know what he means by "skipping resampling",

Rather than repeat the answer to this question, just take a look at the posts above yours discussing this.

and I didn't know cheaper audio devices have poor quality output for 44.1kHz.

That is referring to lower cost PCs, which frequently run at 48kHz native resampling rate.  It is not true of all PCs, or even most, but for a lot of lower cost devices, 48k is widely used. 

 
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