Separate names with a comma.
Even more than that, as noahbickart said, they are bit identical. No need to mince words.
It should be about the music, first and foremost. Getting the best reproduction of the original source is key. I get that. I have both Mac based and PC systems in my home. Utilizing iTunes and ripping to ALAC is convenience choice/decision- and not a performance one.
If anyone has conducted a double blind study- I'd be very interested in their conclusions. But "if it's just identical lossless" information being converted to two to equally good playback formats- then this argument truly is moot.
Steven is just a saint? And here I was think He was God.
By the way, Steven also projects His children from the evil mkv video format and that nasty flash stuff.
Use what your equipment supports. If you are on Apple stuff, then use ALAC. Otherwise I've seen no reason NOT to use FLAC. When I have a piece of hardware that doesn't support it, I convert to WAV or 320 MP3.
FLAC and ALAC will produce the exact same audio.
The only thing that might be different is the size of the audio files due to different methods of compression, or lack thereof.
Anyone who tells you there is a difference is an ignoramus.
Geez, I can’t believe I had to join, because with all these insults nobody toke the time to simply answer a simple question without sarcasm. If you are using a Mac, instead of iTunes use the free downloadable app named XLD for your CD importing or if you wish all your Audio importing as it supports everything from Lossless to all that's in-between. People actually join these forums to gain some knowledge, project a legitimate question or simply just to help, personal feelings toward a product, company or dead guy only shows your high level of ignorance, not knowledge.
Question: Did you read the entire thread from the beginning?
The original poster's questions were all answered on the first page and the remaining posts are just typical forum rambling. There's no need to beat us up about it and besides people don't Apple computers to use third party software and work arounds. They buy Macs to use iTunes and all things Apple. The posts explaining how to rip a CD to Apple lossless completely answered the question. It's best for all concerned that we do our best to keep the evil FLAC as far away from Mac users as possible since there's no telling what kind of chaos might ensue.
Edit: By the way, welcome to Head-Fi!
Hi, just want to ask a question regarding FLAC and ALAC. I am using Mac and iPods, but recently I've been eyeing some non-Apple DAPs like the iBasso DX50, Fiio X3/X5, etc.
I'm also in the progress of converting some lower bit-rate songs in my iTunes library to either 320kpbs MP3 or lossless (ALAC). Should I be bothering with FLACs at all? I know those higher "audiophile grade" DAPs usually decode ALACs, but will it be more efficient with FLACs? Or is there no difference? Thanks in advance.
I know for a fact that the Fiio X3 and X5 can play both formats. As for the iBasso, I don't know. Since you are on a Mac and use iPods, and possibly may purchase a Fiio X3 or X5 in the future, I would go with Apple Lossless.
Myself, I use WAV for everything. It works on everything and I don't need to worry about something not being able to decode it bit-perfectly. I'm not too worried about metadata working across a lot of stuff either. Foobar2000 recognized the WAV metadata that dBpoweramp writes, so does my Fiio X3 and Sansa Clip Zip.
Also, converting lower bitrate songs to 320k or lossless is not going to improve sound quality because the source file is still whatever lower bitrate you're coming from.
There's no point in converting low bit rate. You need to re-rip at a higher rate from the start to gain anything.
ALAC does not have error handling while FLAC does.
It means, if the hard drive is corrupted/damaged and files got damages... Well, FLAC will play parts that are not damaged, while ALAC won't play ANY information.
I can't recommend ALAC as main format if you have a large collection.
See this wiki for more information.
Sorry, language misunderstanding! What I mean is re-ripping my CDs to 320kpbs MP3 or ALAC.
Is 7000+ songs considered a large collection?
Well, 'large' is subjective word indeed. For me, +7000 songs are indeed a large collection. Say, if that library is consists of 15-song albums per 10 bucks, approx price of that +7000 songs is 4.6K USD, that's quite a lot of money, and having at least a backup harddrive for those songs wouldn't hurt in case of emergency situation.
That said, surprisingly a lot of stuffs do not play ALAC natively but does play FLAC no problem. I guess the situation will get better since ALAC is now free-to-implement.... but for technical details FLAC is better (I believe FLAC is actually more efficient than ALAC for encoding. see the wiki for decoding speed).
If you have a REALLY large music library, lossless starts not making sense any more. My library is pushing a year and a half's worth of music at last count. In lossless, it probably wouldn't all fit on one drive. But in AAC 256 VBR it easily fits with space to spare, and the sound quality is identical.