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Mp3 Vs Same Mp3 Converted To Lp2

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Right, I just did a comparison between a LAME 192 mp3 (straight from cd) and the the subsequent track converted to 132 Atrac3. I failed the ABX test (could not tell which is which) using SonicStage 3.0.

I would like to hear what you people's experience with this?

Would imagine going from 320 Lame mp3 to LP2 might be hearable, but 192 and below, do you notice the difference?

Also, what does Type-S decoder do, is there a hearable difference (anyone abxed this)?


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I can readily ABX 132kbps ATRAC3 from even non-LAME 192kbps FhG encoded MP3 at a constant bitrate. It's not that the quality is necessarily worse, it is that ATRAC has an issue with pre-echo on vocals that is VERY recognizeable to my ears, at least.

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I'm employing some shitty earphones at the moment, so I really can't hear much, but in speaking from experience (I haven't ABXed), transcoded Mp3's to Lp2 in SS 2.3 are listenable as long as the original bitrate is > 192kbps Lame. But there are some Mp3's I downloaded off the 'net that were > 192kbps and sounded harsh after transcoding to Lp2 (I suspect they were Xing-enc/non-Lame). I also transcoded some 192kbps AAC (after wav conversion) to Lp2 which seemed to sound pretty good.

Quality of transcoding is also an issue to me because I lost about a dozen CD's (possibly more) through the process of moving and the only trace I have of them are Mp3 and AAC rips (some rip which were not my own, i.e. I downloaded the albums before I bought them, many of which were at encoded at lower bitrate than 192kbps and probably with crappy encoders).

If more people could report their experiences it would be interesting, because although transcoding or re-encoding is a bad idea to start with, there are some people (like me) who have no choice. Boy I can't wait to grab a 2nd generation Hi-MD so I don't have to deal with transcoding anymore!

Edited by Herri
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I know what you mean. I have a few mixtapes which are very poor quality (even with high 256 bitrate). So what I do, is burn them to cd and use SP Type R to copy them to minidisc. That way (digitally, not analogue), the loss of quality is the least you can get with pre-HiMD.

However I would recommend you try SS3, to check if the encoder has been improved over 2.3.

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I usually record my CDs at MP3 VBR (100%, Fraunhofer encoder) and convert them to LP2 (Atrac3, 132kbps) when I need them on minidisc (MZ-S1). Overall IMO, they are practically the same in quality and give me identical listening experiences in terms of overall soundstage and imaging.

Listening from the PC with my Sony MDR-7506 headphones, I already hear very minute artifacts from the MP3 VBR files (I need to be actively listening and listening very hard). After the LP2 conversion, the artifacts are diminished greatly, yet the fidelity of the music remains essentially the same (i.e., enjoyable). Go figure.

I haven't done any listening tests at bitrates less than described above.


Edited by zeedale
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