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lossless things

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Hi!

 

this is my first post, it is not regarding choosing headphones nor other hardware but about the solfware.

this morning i was looking for 'how to identify whether my .flac was really a lossless file' and google direct me to this forum.

 

i downloaded the 'spek' to test my .flac and .wav file, surprised the result that both spectrum are identical, but the file size is so much different, .flac-27.5MB; .wav-45MB. so i was wandering whether one of it would be a fake file or there is other story behind it.

 

Thanks!

post #2 of 14
Hey KwenSing and hi to another newbie smily_headphones1.gif Perhaps I can help but if I'm incorrect in any way hopefuly a more experienced member can step in and correct me here.

Anyhows over the past year and a half I've learnt a bit about lossless formats. I started like many with my entire digital collection comprised of mp3. Eventually I decided it was time to go lossless. Whenever I rip a cd now I rip straight to wav because it is both lossless and uncompressed therefore higher in quality and better to work with should I need to in the future.

Flac however, while also lossless has varying levels of some compression. If you go to foobar 2000 for instance and convert a track in the dialog box somewhere you'll see flac level 5,6,7 e.t.c. so it could be the flac is the same quality but merely compressed a little more. Of course the 24 bit flacs and wavs can be extremely large in size ( 250-400mb sometimes in my experience).

Bottom line is that if flac is compressing my music in any way then given the choice I would always favour the wav file unless space was a serious issue. Haven't tried 'spek' I'll look that one up.
post #3 of 14

A WAV file is an uncompressed audio file, whereas a FLAC file uses loss-less compression. Loss-less compression uses algorithms that compress an audio file without actually changing any of the outputted data (this means a WAV and FLAC of the same file are identical when played back). This is similar to how a Zip or other compressed file archive can be smaller than the original file without losing any data after they are processed. It is common for FLAC to be approximately half the size of the original WAV file.

post #4 of 14

FLAC and WAV store identical information, that's what lossless means - nothing is lost.

As above, it's like putting files in a zip file - they get compressed but once you remove them (uncompress) they're identical to how they were.

post #5 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by ToddTheMetalGod View Post

A WAV file is an uncompressed audio file, whereas a FLAC file uses loss-less compression. Loss-less compression uses algorithms that compress an audio file without actually changing any of the outputted data (this means a WAV and FLAC of the same file are identical when played back). This is similar to how a Zip or other compressed file archive can be smaller than the original file without losing any data after they are processed. It is common for FLAC to be approximately half the size of the original WAV file.

+1 save the space, the only reason to keep something in wave is if you want to modify it, but you can decode flac to wave and back and still not lose anything
post #6 of 14
My 24 bit flac files don't play on my colorfly c4 so I have to convert them to WAV. Which is a pain as a lot of those 24 bit flacs are downloaded from bandcamp and they don't offer WAV as a format. Great comparison with the zip file, so thanks guys its very helpful to know that. smily_headphones1.gif
post #7 of 14
Thread Starter 

Thanks for all the detail explanations!

actually i got interested with music quite some times ago, about 4 years back, i bought a walkman for myself, the sony A845, spending much of my saving at that time (17).

i then thought i knew music and 'listening' to music but now only i realised that there are lot lot more things in the music world. 

so, being a newbie there are lots of thing would like to clarify.

 

i would like to ask:-

 

a) the relationship and output quality between the file format and the music player, as i was being told that i should upgrade my a845, it is outdated should be in recycle bin.. (sad to hear that actually, she is still my baby) but i did not know how to rebut them for as far as i know a better player is to play much more format only. it then lead to the next question, if i did not find it..

 

b) the costly little monster, astell & kern 240, is it kind of 'reformat' the music file to 192kHz, 24bits? perhaps some explanation to the kHz and bits, i am still in the era of kbps.. i did realise that my .flac is 44.1kHz and 16bits, but i am confused with the spectrum for showing the range until 22kHz only..

 

c) and then i found out there are some thing called the amplifier, then i was being told that 'with an amplifier, your music sounds better', again, and in my knowledge an amplifier is for headphone with higher ohm which the music player cannot support. if it really makes my music sound better, will it still effective to work together with a powerful music player, eg. the ak240?

 

Thanks!

 

PS: much appreciation to direct me to the thread if such topic has been discussed.

post #8 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by KwenSing View Post

[...]

perhaps some explanation to the kHz and bits, i am still in the era of kbps.. i did realise that my .flac is 44.1kHz and 16bits, but i am confused with the spectrum for showing the range until 22kHz only..

[...]

I'll let someone else address the rest of your questions, but here's this. The measure of kbps describes how compressed something is, that's it - how much space it takes up on your drive for a second of audio.

 

The kHz and bit measures are sample rate and bit depth. If you imagine a sine wave running horizontally, it has to be chopped up into samples. The sample rate, kHz, is your x axis - how many samples are there in a second? The bit depth is your y axis - how much information (amplitude) is in each sample? The Nyquist theorem (ultimately) states that for a given sample rate, you can reproduce up to half that frequency - hence, a 44kHz PCM stream can reproduce up to 22kHz.

post #9 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by phobos0411 View Post

Flac however, while also lossless has varying levels of some compression. If you go to foobar 2000 for instance and convert a track in the dialog box somewhere you'll see flac level 5,6,7 e.t.c. so it could be the flac is the same quality but merely compressed a little more. Of course the 24 bit flacs and wavs can be extremely large in size ( 250-400mb sometimes in my experience).

Agreed.

The only difference between those levels is how much compression--still lossless; same sound quality. And of course, the more compression, the longer it takes for your computer to make the FLAC. I think maybe that's why those options are there. For back in the day of much slower computers when it would take a computer a while to generate them and someone might prefer speed of file creation over file size.
post #10 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

Agreed.

The only difference between those levels is how much compression--still lossless; same sound quality. And of course, the more compression, the longer it takes for your computer to make the FLAC. I think maybe that's why those options are there. For back in the day of much slower computers when it would take a computer a while to generate them and someone might prefer speed of file creation over file size.

Ah then yes those flac compression levels make a lot of sense. I might just start using flac exclusively when ripping new material. ALbeit I often require the wav format as previously mentioned for my colorfly when I'm out and about or away from the desk. Oh and Kwensing if you get the chance to listen to or purchase a colorfly c4 and have the funds then do it. You'll love the sound wink.gif
post #11 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by phobos0411 View Post




Ah then yes those flac compression levels make a lot of sense. I might just start using flac exclusively when ripping new material. ALbeit I often require the wav format as previously mentioned for my colorfly when I'm out and about or away from the desk. Oh and Kwensing if you get the chance to listen to or purchase a colorfly c4 and have the funds then do it. You'll love the sound wink.gif

i will try to look around, cause here in malaysia some of the thing just cannot find..

post #12 of 14
Colorfly can be ordered off Ebay.
post #13 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

Colorfly can be ordered off Ebay.

agreed

 

but there is always a but.. but if anything, like service or repair is needed, it will cause me lots of inconvenience..

like three years back, i actually wanted to buy a EVGA graphic card through ebay or amazon, but ended up with asus due to the inconvenient of getting after sale service..

 

one thing sad though, after three years evga still not yet expended to here in malaysia, haha, they actually got lots of fans here, most of us were stopped, at least me, for no HQ nearby. perhaps just try to build one in singapore..

post #14 of 14
My first foray into hi-fi head gear was the purchase of both the colorfly C4 and the Sennheiser hd 650s. I purchased both from amazon but I believe if my memory serves me correctly that the colorfly was sold by a separate trader on amazon. really was in retrospect a fantastic way to enter into this land of musical milk and honey. That's not to say I didn't have my doubts at the time spending so much on audio equipment. But looking back I would definitely do it again.
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