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Topic: Microsoft Now on the xHE-AAC Bandwagon! (Read 616 times) previous topic - next topic
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Microsoft Now on the xHE-AAC Bandwagon!

Check this out: Fraunhofer IIS Licenses xHE-AAC Audio Codec Software to Microsoft

The 5 Internet Radio stations I manage all have 40 kbps xHE-AAC fMP4 HLS streams that with my latest web players play natively in Android 9 and 10 with Chrome, macOS Catalina (supposedly impossible but it works in Safari!), iPadOS 13.x (also supposedly impossible but it works in Safari as long as MSE is enabled), iOS 14 beta, iPad OS 14 beta, macOS 11 beta including Safari, Music and even foobar2000, tvOS 14 beta, watchOS 7 beta (yes the watch can play live xHE-AAC streams!) and soon Windows 10!

As I predicted in this forum in another thread back in October 2017, xHE-AAC is now hitting the big time. I challenge anyone on this forum including the Opus fans to get better audio at 40 kbps than what I'm getting with xHE-AAC. It must be the same bit-rate 40kbps, not something higher 'cause the codec can't do 40. I've tried Opus at 40 kbps and it hurt my ears.

Many here said there was no interest in xHE-AAC, that it was irrelevant, that it couldn't compete with Opus, etc. Here we are, July 1st 2020, and for my ears there is still nothing out there that comes close to the quality of xHE-AAC at anything below 64 kbps. Now with Microsoft getting on board all the majors are covered! xHE-AAC + fMP4 + HLS = great sounding live streams with excellent reliability and stability for mobile listening. A quantum leap over ICY streaming (Icecast/Shoutcast) with precisely timed metadata included (tags, album art etc.).

I'm very excited about this. I started streaming live xHE-AAC HLS back in April 2017. Back then the only way to hear the streams was with the appropriately named StreamS Hi-Fi Radio app on iOS (and later tvOS). I knew eventually the streams would be able to go beyond the app. I didn't think it would take just over 3 years for that but here we are now and it's finally happening!


Re: Microsoft Now on the xHE-AAC Bandwagon!

Reply #1
It was time, great news, I wasn't expecting anything else.


Re: Microsoft Now on the xHE-AAC Bandwagon!

Reply #2
Opus at 43-101-141 kbps can sound acceptable (at the moment I have opus 1.3.1-63). But obviously we don't want the bitrate to vary much. And I think is true that with CBR at this state it needs more bitrate.

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