Are you saying that you can hear the difference between 320cbr and V0 vbr in a listening comparison? Really? I have no doubt that some people can hear the difference between lossy and lossless (I struggle to do so), but to hear a difference between 320 and V0 I really think would be nearly impossible, assuming the encoding was done right, proper volume matching used, etc.
None of my devices have had any difficulty with VBR. The e280 and iPod Video 5.5G, both of which were released in 2006, play VBR just fine.....all the Clip and Fuze variants I have had played it just fine. I've also had multiple Sony DAPs, multiple Samsung DAPs, a Creative Zen Mosaic, a 4G Touch and 7G Classic and 4G Shuffle, even the Mini 2G with the CF mod played them OK. It's not quantum physics we're talking about decoding here.
Absolutely agree on AAC being an excellent lossy format to use, but that assumes what I highlighted above, device compatibility. The same could be said of Ogg Vorbis as well.
That's why if I have the FLAC to work with, my lossy conversion is always LAME mp3, because pretty much any device (asides from Charles Altmann's Tera Player) will play it without any fuss.
Yes. I hear a difference and no, I can't prove it and don't care to argue whether I can or not unless you have my ears and kit to compare with. I've always found that sort of challenge a bit rude. Results are often at the mercy of source, kit and expectations. I do think almost all ears are golden. I never said any device would have any trouble decoding VBR-0. I was referring to the Nero 400 encoder since some will not do above 320 properly. Processor load does matter a bit but like you said, no, not rocket science. Maybe it is a bit depending on what you're doing. For instance, I've never heard a USB DAC that I thought VG and I've heard some very costly ones.
What bothers me here is that everybody has their own idea what you can and can't hear. Where is the logic in that you can hear the difference between lossless and lossy but not between 2 different lossy formats? It implies lossy is less than perfect. It would then be more logical to assume that different encode processes would also not be identical. Not why I think they aren't as I only listen for results. I've found that tech knowledge doesn't help me other than to bias a result. I even prefer aac to Lame if I had to choose between them and I'm a Windows guy..
If you compare aac 400 cbr to flac, you'll find that the low level ambience and decay is very close and better than 320 or vbr as well. The problem with the (not exactly) VBR gain riding type of setups for me is that the PRAT and low level tracking doesn't always seem to be as good. It's different enough for me to not use VBR even if there is more available bits. I'd use 256 as soon as V0 but I do agree it's personal and everybody should do what works for them. Difference is that I comment on my personal result and don't tell others what to use. I'm also a believer in HiDef because my listening results have left little doubt for me but when it comes to portable use, with limited space and less than the best kit, to each his own.
Edited by goodvibes - 8/2/13 at 10:00am