Go into itunes and right click on a track name. Select "get info". A window will open up that contains info about the track, including what type of file it is. Lossless files are called "Apple Lossless Audio Files". A typical lossless track will take up more than 20MB.
An easier way is to go to your main Music playlist and from the top menu select "View", choose "View Options" and click the box marked "Kind". It will then generate a column showing the kind of file each song is.
I ripped 650 CD's, only to find out I was using the wrong settings....they are all at 128 bit.
Here's the good news, when I rip them the second time, all of the previously saved data is saved (how many times played, when first loaded, amended genre name, etc) and the bit rate is around 800-1000.
The sound is NOTICEABLY better.
Bit rate and kind are great ways to find them. Then you can click on their headers and sort by them. I use this to find a few Hi Rez tracks that do not have proper track info.
I'm not sure if iTunes plays lossless files at all such as EAC, FLAC etc...?
I use Media Monkey since I couldn't uncode them with i-Tunes.
There's certainly hi-rez capability of iTunes but still not considered lossless.
Well I thought I had done this correctly...
but looking now as advised above, I can see music that I ripped using iTunes as well as everything I purchased is "protected AAC" and only 128.
One album which I always thought sounded better than the others was somehow ripped at 256.
But would love to know how to maximize fidelity, while remaining within iTunes if that is possible.
If iTunes forces you to buy compressed music, its time for all of us to stop using it.
iTunes can use Apple Lossless and AIFF which are lossless formats. It cannot, however, use FLAC files natively, which I find a severe omission.
I believe that things purchased from the iTunes store are compressed files (someone may need to correct me here, since I've never done it). But nothing stops you from purchasing a CD and then ripping it into Apple Lossless.
Itunes will rip the CD's at the setting you tell it to at the beginning. For Windows go to Preferences under Edit and under the General page choose import setting. Choose what setting you want. Remember when it says 128 it's for mono so it will be 256 for stereo.
Great! Thanks for all the input and responses guys! Glad to see I'm not the only one floundering a 'bit' in this format ;^)
To further add to the confusion - after poking around a little in the iTunes settings, I also noticed if you highlight any song, then right-click on it, one of the options that comes up is 'Create Apple Lossless Version'. Hmmm, it even allows this option with a supposed MP3 iTunes purchased song, which again, I thought was only MP3 ??
But bottom line, I'm a 're-adjusted' audiophile, who like many was forced to sell off my main system and am now using an iPod based headphone system. So I'm looking for the highest possible rez. From what I'm learning so far, sounds like dumping iTunes altogether and going with a different music file system is the way to go?? Comments and suggestions??
The key is the import settings in itunes need to be set to AIFF, or WAV to get the best sound using itunes. As noted, this will make good sounding files when you import by ripping CDs. After you buy a crappy file from itunes store, it is AND ALWAYS WILL BE a crappy file. Itunes will let you convert it to AIFF later, but the data you want isn't there. It's sorta like magnifying a crappy photocopy, it's too late.
HDtracks and most other good format downloadable stuff is FLAC, so itunes can't read it. If you only use ipods or stuff that can work with itunes (e.g. Squeezebox for home rig) you can just convert FLAC into AIFF with separate piece of software(search FLAC to itunes). For me, the problem is that I also have a Cowon J3 portable that only plays FLAC, so I am stuck for now with two libraries, one in AIFF and one in FLAC. A PITA for sure! Cheers,
That "Create Apple Lossless Version" setting won't add any info to a track. I use it to convert WAV files to Apple Lossless.
The other responses to the other stuff are correct, to the best of my knowledge.
Have your default CD importing setting to either Apple Lossless or AIFF. Apple Lossless is basically Apple's version of FLAC, and AIFF is their version of WAV. iTunes will play WAV. Not sure if iPods/iPohones/iPads will or not. Never tried it.
I rip all my CDs as Apple Lossless. Never heard a difference between that, WAV, or AIFF. Others here have. Others haven't. Everyone's ears, room, and gear is different. Rip a few tracks in a few different formats and see if you hear a difference. Apple Lossless takes up less hard drive space if you don't hear a difference.
I put ALL my cd's to Itunes as ALAC.
Than I make a 2 playlists...one of the lossless files for wireless streaming to the stereo / DAC and a copy into an MP3-160 playlist for car / pod.
Does anyone here use any 3rd party plugins to itunes that allow native FLAC in itunes? Cheers,
I use Xact to convert FLAC to AIFF. It's free and it works well.
Spiritualized, I hear ya, but I don't want to convert to AIFF, as my portable can only play FLAC. I want to get FLAC files from hdtracks.com and keep them FLAC, but manage only one library. Any ideas? Cheers,