Both are excellent
- There is a lot of misinformation being spread in some of these comments. First off, if you want near studio quality, then you choose WAV or ALAC (FLAC to save room) - you DO NOT rely on AAC for that. Second, MP3 can go higher than 450kbps, but it's not supported by many players as I understand it. I've used both extensively and they both do the job. I use my ears as the judge along with very good equipment and there is no difference to me. I never convert below 200kbps and I always use VBR. However, lossless is the way to go since storage is so cheap.
- —Guest Joshua
AAC vs MP3
- I have my music in MP3 192 kbps, using the Fraunhoffer and Windows Media Player encoders. After reading about AAC vs MP3s, decided to give a shot and tried AAC 250 kbps VBR using nero encoder. Sounds better (like CD) and some files are smaller (!!) than MP3 192 kbps. I decided to reconvert all my music to AAC because classical music needs VBR, too many complex sounds involved. I am not encoding from MP3 to AAC, this is the worst you can do, you will lose more quality by transcoding from lossy to lossy. I am having a hard time to find the FLAC's specially cpe bach's concertos for keyboard
- —Guest classicFan
AAC was designed to replace MP3
- When we say AAC, I assume we mean LC-AAC (Low Complexity). AAC supports several profiles, but LC is the only one with wide compatibility and the one Apple uses in its products. Ultimately, no lossy codec like MP3 or AAC can ever contain the exact audio data of a CD because their compression techniques work by discarding very small and very large modulations in the audio wave. However, at the same bitrate, AAC has a better defined sound wave than MP3 and a smaller file size. There is no compromise here, AAC is better in both quality and size. And that makes sense as MP3 was standardized in the MPEG-1 standard in 1995, but just 2 years later, MPEG presented AAC as an improved standard to MP3. AAC has been the MPEG standard since 1997, while MP3 was only standard for a period of 2 years. Trust the professionals, they know what they're doing. That aside, Vorbis (what most people call OGG audio) exhibits similar quality and size to AAC, but is free of MPEG's licenses
- —Guest Chris B
- You people are dumb! MP3 is old! Use Lossless FLAC instead!
- —Guest Amrita Kaur Chahal
- PC vs Apple, PC wins due to open(ish) standard. AAC vs MP3, MP3 wins because of open(ish) standard. The argument is never as cut and dried as which is best. More like which is "good enough" and easiest to work with. MP3 wins, manufacturers support unencumbered standards that cost less or nothing. So it's never which is best, it's which will win. Depending on what side of the fence you are on, you will win with MP3 or queue up with the betamax lovers with nothing to play your music with...
- —Guest rob
AAC Beats MP3's Ass
- I've been a fan of the AAC format since I first heard of it. I record in AAC 128kbs. Better music quality, less disk usage, and overall better than MP3.
- —Guest AAC LOVER
- I record at 1500 kbps AAC. This is 2012 guys! How can you be so backward?
- —Guest Eish
MP3. No question about it.
- Although AAC is a newer codec, MP3 is far more compatible. At higher bitrates (MP3 max quality - 320kbps OR V-0), there's no difference between the MP3 file and the original CD. So, MP3 is the right choice.
- —Guest Arcus Odissey
Hello. We are in 2012
- Judge for yourself. 1. MP3 (LAME) is uses a slightly higher bitrate to encode for the same quality as AAC. 2. AAC was originally built upon the correction of problems brought about by MP3. 3. AAC has a unified tagging system without many versions like MP3 whose metadata easily messes up. 4. LAME only starts competing with iTunes AAC if it is in Joint Stereo. The AAC file will be in True Stereo. This implies that the MP3's stereo image is damaged. 5. MP3 has the widest support but software-wise this point is obsolete. Hardware support is now comparable. If AAC is not supported then WMA is. 6. MP3's maximum spec is 48 kHz, 2 Channel Audio whereas AAC's maximum spec is 96 kHz, 96 Channel Audio. This means lossy near-Studio Quality distribution is possible with AAC but impossible with MP3 and AAC has support for Surround Sound. 7.The only reason why AAC is often sidelined is the same reason why AVC is often sidelined. People cannot accept change. It is human nature.
- —Guest Ronald
AAC vs. MP3 file sizes?
- What's with the ~1MB file size difference? At the same bit rate, AAC and MP3 should be within a few bytes of each other (bitrate x # of seconds = file size). Looks like you had VBR enabled when you converted for the MP3 and not the AAC.
- —Guest Chris CA
AAC is good, but still not worth it yet.
- So many things still don't support AAC. I think if AAC was more universal, I probably would switch to it (actually, I like OGG even better, but that's very unlikely). I have always listened to (don't judge yet) MP3 at 96kbps 44.1k CBR (90% of the time it's LAME) and NEVER noticed any quality loss. I am not going deaf; I listen to my music on high-end speakers and I have a musically trained ear that has been active since I was 5. I am very picky about audio, yet I still say that 96kbps MP3 is the most compatible by far and really not a measurable amount lesser than AAC.
- —Guest Erik
- AAC is a newer, more sophisticated codec than MP3. Was developed by a joint venture between Nokia and Sony in the second half of the 90s... Codecs are made of "algorithms", well...all the informatics is made of them...They are the "core" of everything we do with a computer...AAC algorithms are much better than MP3's. No matter the bitrate. And the codec pushed up to its ultimate limits reached the (crazy for a lossy) 450 Kbps!! Being AAC as pointed out ALWAYS an ABR/VBR codec that means if you encode at 320Kbps the resulting file will have transients at 450 Kbps...This is provable with Foobar2000 for Windows, the player that gives you real time the information about bitrate...In Foobar I never saw an AAC staying at 320Kbps... There is always a Peak "above"... In very complex music it reached its limit very easily...I repeat: 450 Kbps!! So...we have a much better implemented codec that can reach 128Kbps MORE than ANY MP3 codec...Guess who is the winner?
- —Guest Azure
- I am currently (for the last 3 hours) converting my WAV and MPEGs to AAC format simply to import to my Ext HD and import onto my new HP. I hope the wait is worth it. So far so good.
- —Guest JTribal
Thanx for doing it for me
- I was planning to do a test of my own. But since I found your article, I changed my mind. I have everything I need. hehehe! Will now use MP3 in 256kbps to have more songs in my device and yet still enjoy the quality. Thank you so much!
- —Guest Chardi
- use mp3 modifie,r a free mp3 encoder with hardly any loss at even 64 kbps
- —Guest guestshady