• Does FLAC sound better than 320kbps MP3?
    399 replies, posted
I find it depends on the song. Some tracks sound just as good in 320kbps, some sound far better in CD quality. Depends how well the perceptual mp3 encoder can manage in differing circumstances I guess. I can't tell the difference unless I wear my monitor headphones and have a good sound card.
I feel they do sound better, but not worth the extra space unless it's going on a cd/dvd
[QUOTE=Lamar;35458620]It's not taking into the account of the limits in human hearing. MP3 coding is supposed to cut sounds off at 18khz-16khz depending on the bit-rate. Engineers did this because those are the limits of human hearing. [url]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hearing_range#Humans[/url] Why not do a blind A/B test with foobar and see for yourself?[/QUOTE] People aren't digitalized robots, everyone has unique ears and some can be more sensitive to frequencies. For example I can clearly hear when a transistor is going out on a CRT, it rings loudly through my head, while others cannot notice it. In other words people's ability to hear things can differ a lot.
Lamar needs to realise that people are not flawed by having opinions. You don't see a meaningful difference for yourself where as others do. "But their brain is telling them to". Why do you care if people willingly listen to it? People don't have to go into this world blind. [editline]9th April 2012[/editline] This has nothing to do with a majority rules matter either, because the majority are not interested in technicality and high fidelity.
While I can't tell the difference between the two, I use FLAC for storage and archival, and mp3 for listening. Whenever I need to recompress some track (different codec, bitrate or compression settings), I go back to the FLAC source, so I won't have to rip the CD again. I only buy the music of the artists I really like, and keep the CDs on the shelf. Because of this, I never buy music from digital stores, unless they offer it in some lossless or uncompressed format. Not because I'm some crazed audiophile, but simply because I expect to keep those tracks forever, just like the CDs.
I can easily tell the difference. Flac sounds much cleaner and has more "depth" than an mp3. Though in the end I prefer mp3 as they're more popular and weight less.
[QUOTE=AceOfDivine;35509860]I can easily tell the difference. Flac sounds much cleaner and has more "depth" than an mp3. Though in the end I prefer mp3 as they're more popular and weight less.[/QUOTE] You must be some kind of superhuman, most people who have been tested using the scientific method are not able to tell one from the other.
[QUOTE=zugu;35513115]You must be some kind of superhuman, most people who have been tested using the scientific method are not able to tell one from the other.[/QUOTE] Everyone has different hearing
[QUOTE=zugu;35513115]You must be some kind of superhuman, most people who have been tested using the scientific method are not able to tell one from the other.[/QUOTE] There are so many variables its not even funny. Everyone seems to perceive hearing a bit differently. It would be pretty hard to prove one way or the other without a large sample population.
320 MP3s are generally used for the personal use, such has ipod and stuff. In my opinion the only time you should really use FLAC is if you are a serious about audio quality. However, most people can't tell the difference between mp3 and flac with headphones. The difference comes out when you are on a larger system. I use two KRK 5 on my motherboard's soundcard and you can hear a slight difference. One thing I noticed the most though is that for concerts and stuff, producers/DJs will use flac for the huge speakers they have. As I said before, mp3 is the better for personal use unless you have the monitors to push flac to their correct volume.
Yes it does. But most people dont have the right headphones/ears/speakers and media player to hear the difference. TL;DR On shitty equipment you wont hear the difference. On better equipment, you [I]will [/I]hear it.
I don't have good enough earphones to give a shit really. I like listening to and play music, but I don't have money for caring. Of course lossless is better, but that doesn't change the fact that the larger part of the population won't have neither the equipment nor care to make it a difference. I can easily (and I think most people can) hear a difference between even the best qaulity sound on youtube, and the CDs that I've got - but most people I've met don't give a shit. I certainly care about the quality, but I simply [I]can't[/I] to that extent.
I can only hear a slight difference between the two. Usually it is the drums. But I prefer 320 because of its file size and compatibility. I've had my [url=http://i.imgur.com/5H93t.jpg]Beyerdynamic DT-770 pro[/url] and [url=http://i.imgur.com/o6YHa.jpg]Auzentech Xplosion[/url] for three years.
It depends what you're playing it through and how discerning you are. I can tell the difference, but I have spent quite a few years getting my Hi-Fi set up right and getting the equipment I like
[QUOTE=toastman;35565518]Yes it does. But most people dont have the right headphones/ears/speakers and media player to hear the difference. TL;DR On shitty equipment you wont hear the difference. On better equipment, you [I]will [/I]hear it.[/QUOTE] Exactly. I recently bought superb quality headphones, flac really does sound sweet. But on my speakers, there's not much difference, if any.
Voices to me sound better in flac. I have a bunch of of montreal songs and in some of them it's just him talking and it sounds much better in flac, much sharper and cleaner
I'm fairly sure this debate has conceded. One side wants to say the audiophiles are dillusioned, and the other just want to enjoy music.
[QUOTE=zugu;35513115]You must be some kind of superhuman, most people who have been tested using the scientific method are not able to tell one from the other.[/QUOTE] You must be subhuman with such poor hearing then. Seriously on proper headset I can hear the difference just fine. On a cheap one I can't though.
Scientific method cannot determine individual opinions. The blind test is not only pointless, it's just a waste of time. If people want high fidelity, they'll choose a CD over an MP3.
Why do you think a blind ABX test is pointless and a waste of time? It allows you to judge FLAC vs. MP3 without confirmation bias. I don't understand your hesitation to not actually try it when you've been in this debate since the beginning. In the meantime you could have already performed dozens of these ABX tests on yourself, so you can actually say with certainty that you think one sounds better than the other.
[QUOTE=Scot;35458123]The only real difference is between <=192kbps and 320kbps, anything after is a waste of space[/QUOTE] I have an album ripped in 56 kbps on my computer yet it hardly sounds different from a 320 rip. I think it really depends on what speakers/headphones you have. A cheap pair will most likely show no difference (like the pair I use) whereas something more expensive will show a greater difference. Though I did notice that FLAC had a cleaner sound compared to mp3s which did make things more enjoyable, so yeah I guess it does sound better.
[QUOTE=Lamar;35571919]Why do you think a blind ABX test is pointless and a waste of time? It allows you to judge FLAC vs. MP3 without confirmation bias. I don't understand your hesitation to not actually try it when you've been in this debate since the beginning. In the meantime you could have already performed dozens of these ABX tests on yourself, so you can actually say with certainty that you think one sounds better than the other.[/QUOTE] I'm not debating for my own sake, I already stated that I don't care. I'm debating for the right to people's enjoyment of whichever format they like, and that factual evidence states there are less flaws in FLAC audio than MP3. Audible differences are subject to opinions. I'm only after the facts.
[QUOTE=AK'z;35568642]I'm fairly sure this debate has conceded. One side wants to say the audiophiles are dillusioned, and the other just want to enjoy music.[/QUOTE] gee i wonder which side you're on
[QUOTE=AK'z;35572095]I'm not debating for my own sake, I already stated that I don't care. I'm debating for the right to people's enjoyment of whichever format they like, and that factual evidence states there are less flaws in FLAC audio than MP3. Audible differences are subject to opinions. I'm only after the facts.[/QUOTE] The human ear has a threshold on what it can and cannot hear, that's been the argument people like myself have been giving. FLAC having less flaws than mp3 isn't an end-all, when the previous is taken into account. You can say you're only after the facts, but the majority of your posts used anecdotal evidence to support your current viewpoint. Why not consider the limitations of the human ear then? I find you reluctance to actually judge the two formats fairly, very telling.
Lamar. I have gone over this. Frequencies outside the range of human hearing, frequencies beyond the limits of the human ear, are called ultrasonic frequencies. This is why you can't hear an ultrasound machine. Ultrasonic frequencies aren't represented in 16bit 44.1kHz FLAC. Which means, that 100% of the frequencies represented therein are not considered 'ultrasonic', meaning none of them are outside of the range of human hearing. Meaning if you were comparing a song in MP3, which clips out both ultrasonic frequencies and some frequencies we can hear, to a song in FLAC, which does not include ultrasonic frequencies but preserves all of the frequencies we can hear, there would be a definable, measurable, and depending on the song, an audible difference between the two. You see, your argument is that FLAC has ultrasonic frequencies, meaning frequencies which are outside of the range of human hearing, and that's why it doesn't sound different. However, this is simply untrue. It would be true if you were specifically referring to 24bit 192kHz FLAC, though. That contains ultrasonic frequencies. To further elaborate - 16bit 44.1 or 48kHz is the most common and often the default sample rate and bit depth for various lossless formats. At sampling rates like this, you won't run into ultrasonic frequencies. However, some people do post 24bit 192kHz encodes of albums, and those do contain ultrasonic frequencies and not only is this useless and possibly detrimental to playback fidelity, it's an enormous waste of space. So your argument is true explicitly for oversampled lossless audio, but not lossless audio in general, and especially not lossless audio in its most common format; 16bit 44.1kHz FLAC. To elaborate even further, so as to squash any hope of attempting the 'there's no audible difference argument', the reason 16bit 44.1kHz came into use was because it's the optimal thing to prevent the representation of ultrasonic frequencies while also preserving frequencies which we can hear. In other words, the very reason we use it and the very reason the numbers are what they are is because there IS a difference in what you can hear with the human ear, but we've over time discovered that it appears to be only in that range.
everybody here should invest in the klipsch image s4. super fucking clear sounding earbuds for like $55. these earbuds helped me realize the importance of having higher quality music files on deck. the micro details you miss out on in most of your favorite songs are accentuated perfectly. these earbuds made me have to re-listen to my entire library, no joke. they also seal out sound really well and are ultra comfortable buy some now ;)
[QUOTE=Lamar;35572265]The human ear has a threshold on what it can and cannot hear, that's been the argument people like myself have been giving. FLAC having less flaws than mp3 isn't an end-all, when the previous is taken into account. You can say you're only after the facts, but the majority of your posts used anecdotal evidence to support your current viewpoint. Why not consider the limitations of the human ear then? I find you reluctance to actually judge the two formats fairly, very telling.[/QUOTE] So you reckon any enjoyment of high fidelity audio is implausable? Why don't all audio engineers just work with mp3s, heck why doesn't the companies chuck all their equipment out because surely mp3 is the maximum. :-) [editline]14th April 2012[/editline] [QUOTE=Mon;35572153]gee i wonder which side you're on[/QUOTE] Don't blame me, I'd rather defend the ones being called "scientifically deluded".
[QUOTE=Lamar;35572265]The human ear has a threshold on what it can and cannot hear, that's been the argument people like myself have been giving. FLAC having less flaws than mp3 isn't an end-all, when the previous is taken into account. You can say you're only after the facts, but the majority of your posts used anecdotal evidence to support your current viewpoint. Why not consider the limitations of the human ear then? I find you reluctance to actually judge the two formats fairly, very telling.[/QUOTE] Why judge when FLAC is obviously better?, you don't need tests to see that :v: Confirmation bias is a hell of a thing, when I was comparing H.264 vs. Theora for something, I took 2 screen captures of the same frame from the 2 formats, and labelled them as the opposite format and showed them to some staunch H.264 supporters. They all claimed the "H.264" still was of a higher quality than the "Theora" one. That's why the need for a proper blind test is so important, your own brain will lie to you.
[QUOTE=AK'z;35572851]So you reckon any enjoyment of high fidelity audio is implausable? [/QUOTE] The only thing implausible is peoples' senses working beyond what's been scientifically determined as physically possible. Of course lossless formats provide for a technically more accurate sound reproduction, but if only a machine has the capability of determining this it's for naught. [QUOTE=AK'z;35572851] Why don't all audio engineers just work with mp3s, heck why doesn't the companies chuck all their equipment out because surely mp3 is the maximum. :-) [/QUOTE] Principle states you should be working with the best possible source material to reduce the chances of introducing errors. Editing audio with physically inaudible flaws might make those flaws audible.
FLAC is a good format to make your music collection out of because you can down convert a file to whatever quality you want without breaking the golden rule of lossless-> lossy. The difference between FLAC and MP3-320 is not audible to me in most cases. I've applied personal blind tests on my upper-mid equipment and found that I don't need to listen to lossless FLAC, but will avoid anything below MP3-V0. I do keep my home collection of music in FLAC though.
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