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Best Import format for iTunes?

by bean_mrbean / March 10, 2006 12:42 AM PST

I really would like to hear everyone's opinion on this:
Using Tunes, what is the best format to import with?
And with that, what settings are best for that format.
HD space is not an issue for me, so I dont care about file size, I care about quality.
Please help.

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Why not toss the CD at it?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / March 10, 2006 1:04 AM PST

Works for me everytime. Most any MP3 will work too.


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I can help with that
by Glorybox3737 / March 10, 2006 12:32 PM PST

I always recommend mp3 format. Since it's universal. The 192vbr setting should produce the best quality. Anything above that would be overkill.

However if you really care about quality, the best thing would be to rip your cds in LAME 3.97b -V 2 --vbr-new using the EAC. This is perhaps the most highly recommended way to rip your cds. Trust me your ears will thank you. Here's a guide and everything you need.


I recommend this way more than ripping cd's in itunes.

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Well thats easy
by Jedi_1 / March 11, 2006 11:52 AM PST

I made the mistake of importing ALL my CD collection @ AAC 192kbps and it was great(took up 8.3Gbs) until I jumped from an iPod to the Creative Zen Vision:M. You see my music was imported in AAC which the Vision DOES NOT SUPPORT so I had to re-rip 8+ gigs of music(took all night) into 192Kpbs MP3 and left me with a big headache because WMP 10 was designed by monkeys and trying to organize 979 songs into 15 playlists was no where as easy as it would be on iTunes.
My advice is to import using the MP3 encoder @192kbps if your going to use that music on devices other than the iPod and iTunes otherwise AAC @ 192kbps is perfect.

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mp3 or lossless
by alext / March 11, 2006 7:27 PM PST

Glorybox is right. If you are ripping to a lossy format then mp3 is the way to go. It is great quality at high bit rates and will work on any player.

Don't use iTunes to rip it as it does not produce high quality mp3s. Again, Glorybox linked to the right rippers.

If you want perfect audio quality you might also consider a lossless format. These give an exact copy of the cd, at about 60% size (about double the best mp3).

The choice here is less clear as they all sound perfect. I use FLAC as this is what my portable supports, and I can also play it on my computer using WinAmp.

If you need something that plays in iTunes or on an iPod then ALAC is what you need. It is a good format, quite simple to decode, making it suitable for portables as it does not drain the battery too much.

Another plus point is that the ALAC decoder is free for any other software maker to use. This means that you could encode to ALAC for now. If you need to use a different format later you can easily find a tool that will automatically convert for you, without going through the hassle of reripping your cds. I know dbPowerAmp currently supports this, and probably many others.

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