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Topic: FLAC vs. 320 VBR AAC - For OLD People (Read 4412 times) previous topic - next topic
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Re: FLAC vs. 320 VBR AAC - For OLD People

Reply #25
I'm in my mid 60's. I know to a certainty that my ears just ain't what they used to be (an open question is if they ever were what I think they used to be).

So, I am ripping vast numbers of CD's to FLAC. I've got a pretty decent setup. An A&K SE100 player, good ripper, good quality CD's that were not abused so that they might skip, and, at the end of the chain, a FIIO Q5S portable headphone AMP, and Focal Clear headphones.

I would argue a decent setup.

The main problem, I think, is that my ears are way over 60 years old. I've tried testing AAC vs. FLAC with this setup, flipping back and forth and back and forth a number of times so that I don't know what format I'm listening too, just to see if I can notice a difference. I don't think I do. Not double blind, but worth something ,I guess.

Ok, long-winded. Should I just I let it go and go for AAC, and not be missing anything? I mean, I hate to give up audio quality, but if the ears just don't hear them, what's the point? The issue is size of files, and even with 512gb I'm a little cramped, what with all of both Rock and Classical, and soon really will be.

Have any of you reached this stage, or have thoughts on this?

I'm 54 and I can' tell the difference between a FLAC and decent bitrate AAC, not matter how may times I do blind ABX tests.

I first tried an ABX test about 4 years ago and failed.  I was 50 at the time.

With age, we all start to lose high-frequency that probably is the explanation for why you and I can't tell the difference.

17,400 Hz is a frequency that only teenagers can hear.
15,000 Hz is difficult for anyone over the age of 40 to hear.
12,000 Hz is hard for anyone over 50 years of age to hear.
8,000 Hz should be easily heard by everyone with normal hearing.

But I've watched videos of college kids ABX-ing, and even though they did better than me, they had to concentrate REALLY hard and you could see most of them were struggling.

This article has audio samples that allow you to test your high-frequency hearing:

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