- From: Roderick Stewart <rjfs@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Wed, 07 Jun 2006 06:50:55 +0100
In article <aqnhg.8888$qD.6252@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, Richard Evans wrote:
You could save half the transmission cost versus 128 kbps MP2. Not bad.
But don't you worry, even 64 AAC+ is not very nice to listen to.
Actually 64k AAC+ can sound perfectly acceptable.
I sometimes listen to a radio station over the web at 64K HE-AAC (Radio
Jackie), as the FM reception of that station is a bit weak here.
The first time I tried it, it didn't sound very good, it seemed a bit
distorted. Since then I've installed a newer version of WinAmp, and now
it sounds perfectly acceptable, vastly better than 128k mp2.
Hardware can evidently make quite a difference too. I recently tried a
fairly ordinary Soundblaster card to see if it would have less background
noise than the built-in sound circuitry on my computer's motherboard. It
did, and sounded a whole lot better too. Although I'm reluctant to lapse
into the sort of flowery language that hi-fi magazines use, my best
description is that it sounds "smoother" or "sweeter", certainly more
pleasant and less tiring to listen to for any length of time.
64k AAC+ can sound surprisingly good, considering all the talk of 128k not
being good enough for DAB (which my ears confirm). Even lower bit rates than
that sound more like medium wave radio than digital distortion, and plenty
of people still listen to that. Without knowing all the details, I'd guess
that AAC is designed to make the decoded sound degrade at low bit rates in a
more graceful manner that is better suited to human perception.
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