I am new to the lossless audio format. I need HELP!

By maniac_lonestar ยท 4 replies
Jun 18, 2007
  1. 1) What is better, .wav or .flac? Which is the actual lossless?

    2) Does the type of program I use encode/rip at different qualities?

    3) I did a little confusing research, and learned that if I wanted to rip .flac, I could use Autoflac OR EAC. But when I install Autoflac, it says EAC. What the crap? Autoflac doesn't even load.

    4) Omg, I can't even play or use any programs to use and edit .flac file. Help!

    5) It doesn't make sense! .wav files can be played, but everywhere I go I hear about .flac does it have better quality or something? I thought both were lossless.
  2. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    .wav is usually not compressed, so you lose a lot of disk space using that.

    Lossless encoding is perfect by definition, so the encoder makes no difference. Different ripping programs may put more or less effort into getting a perfect signal from the CD of course.

    Can you actually hear the difference between a lossless audio file and an MP3? If you can't hear the difference, then there is none and there would be no point in (re)ripping all your CDs. I hope you are not considering re-encoding your MP3 files to lossless audio :)
  3. maniac_lonestar

    maniac_lonestar TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 117

    Well if I re-encode to high quality, real quality actually be a little bit better?

    Also, I didn't say I was gonna make all audio lossless, but only Ludacris audio, because Ludacris is the greatest MC ever. I mean I want to rip from Ludacris CD's to make a non CD backup for my Ludacris so that if I ever get too much scratches on a disk or loses the cd, then atleast I can use my .flac .wav files

    Now please, can I get helpful information?
  4. LNCPapa

    LNCPapa TS Special Forces Posts: 4,276   +461

    Fresh meat! Hey maniac - I'm a huge lossless aficionado and flac is my format of choice as well.

    First, as Nodsu already mentioned, both wav and flac are lossless formats - the differences lies in compression. Your sound quality will be identical between your flac and wav files, but your flac files should be about 1/2 to 2/3 the size of the wav. This means you'll be using lots of space for your music - I average about 350-500 MB per CD. The process usually requires ripping to wav and then compressing the wav to flac. Tools that say they do it in one shot usually just do the rip to wav for you and some even point to external applications like EAC. I'm not familiar with the use of Autoflac, but chances are you just need to tell it where your EAC installation is so it can use it.

    There are many ways to rip your music and convert it to flac and everyone who does it will probably have their own preferred way of doing so. I actually rip with EAC and do my encoding with the Flac frontend. Study up a bit on the use of EAC also and check out the forums at hydrogenaudio.org. The programmer of flac spends a lot of time on those forums, but make sure you use the search feature extensively before asking questions.

    You can also play back your flac files in MANY different applications. iTunes is NOT one of those applications and it's fairly difficult to get reliable playback in WMP as well. Winamp, Foobar2000, VLC, and many more on the windows side can play them back. CogOSX (cogx.org) is the best one I've seen for OSX, and almost anything on linux will play flac with ease. Just keep in mind that no amount of encoding is going to get you better sound quality than your original source - the best you can hope for is identical quality.

    One of the main reasons I went flac is I wanted a format I could use on many platforms (Win,Mac,Lin) and archive all of my CDs. I also playback my library on my AV system which I've spent $??,??? on so yes, I can hear the difference between 320 kbps MP3 and my flac (depending on the type of music.) I re-encoded my entire library from 320 kbps MP3 to flac once I had the storage and time to do so.
  5. Char_X

    Char_X TS Rookie Posts: 170

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