Importing files to iMac

I'm importing files from discs to an iMac for transfer to a Sony HAP. I've been using iTunes (MP3 at 192 kbytes), but it's been suggested I should use uncompressed AIFF. But iTune AIFF is limited to 48 kbytes. What's the tradeoff between compressed and lossless and bit-rate? Should I look for software other than iTunes for encoding disc files, and if so what?
Ag insider logo xs@2xdbphd
it’s been suggested I should use uncompressed AIFF. But iTune AIFF is limited to 48 kbytes.
A Redbook CD’s sample rate is 44.1 kHz, which is 1411 kbps. With itunes, use AIFF encoder, click on Import Settings, then use Custom.
I've been confusing kHz with kbps.   iTunes offers 48 kHz at 16 bits for AIFF.  Thanks.
Don't rip with iTunes. Download free XLD for mac. It will get you bit perfect rips into AIFF with greater accuracy than iTunes. Use error correction option. For really scratched discs use 1x or 2x speed; it will usually still work, just a bit slower. After each rip it will create a log that confirms details of the results. Scroll all the way to bottom and usually you will see "No errors". Cheers,
@sbank , I've used XLD on my Mac and it works very well. I forget, doesn't it save ripped tracks into the iTunes library?
It saves ripped tracks wherever you specify. Could be your iTunes library if you want it to be, but it could be a different folder if you prefer. Cheers,
Following advice of Abe Collins at an Asylum thread I reset iTunes AIFF encoding to automatic and 16 bits.  I've now become pretty proficient at resetting the Sony HAP, clearing the iTunes library, resetting encoding, and clearing the memory of the HAP transfer app.  The actual process of ripping to the Sony HAP-Z1ES requires of me only inserting a CD or SACD into the reader I use with my iMac.  The resulting sound is excellent, indistinguishable from that with the disc played on the Sony SCD XA5400ES.
Abe knows his stuff. With SACD thru the Mac drive, is the HAP-Z writing a 24/96 hirez file?
I'm not sure what the HAP-Z1ES does.  I think it may upscale uncompressed encoding to DSD during playback, and attempt to address the loss from compressed encoding.
I should have written that I don't know if it writes a hirez file or converts it during playback.  I do know an SACD source sounds like an SACD.
Thanks @dbphd . I've only recently moved into computer audio.
If the HAP-Z rips SACDs as high rez that would be very big news. My understanding is that Sony has long held a strong position against the idea of ripping SACDs because of their interest in the sale of SACDs with their music biz. 
For many years the only way that anyone(and a small number) ripped SACD in high rez is by hacking a Sony Playstation of a certain vintage and doing some tweaking of the files. This is well documented online. Recently a similar routing to rip SACDs from Oppo players has gained popularity. You can find details on CA etc.
Contrary to @dbphd 's experience, IMHE it would be erroneous to conclude that ripped redbook layer from dual layer SACDs sound like SACD. Ripped SACD ISOs converted to 24/88 or 24/176 often sound like SACD, but occasionally get screwed up during the conversion process depending on the software used and settings (For me it's sometimes confusing!).
Many players show on their digital display during playback if the current song is SACD, HDCD etc. Does the HAP do that? If so at least it would be easy to confirm what the playback is looking at, 16/44, SACD or something else. Cheers,
@sbank No idea whether the Sony HAP-Z1ES can handle ripped SACDs.  But it handles DSD downloads pretty well.  Who needs to mess with physical disks at this point, short of archiving?  I've already put my CDs onto the Sony internal drive, and I ain't going back to physical media for digital (vinyl's another story).  

The Sony app, which works very well, shows the file resolution in the track listings.  The highest resolution it handles, as far as I know, is DSD 5.6Mhz, as with the recent Bill Evans "Some Other Time" album, currently playing on the Sony.  I'm hoping that firmware updates from the inscrutable Sony world will continue to keep this player at least mid-fi relevant.

The statement I can make without fear of dispute is that I don't know what the Sony HAP-Z1ES does, but whatever it does, the sound satisfies me.

My principal SACD player is an Ayre C-5xeMP in another setup.  Neither the HAP-Z1ES nor the XA5400ES quite matches it, but the HAP does sound very similar to the Sony disc player.


Here are a few other options to get best quality transfers.
At the advise of, I purchased a Mercury Pro optical drive from OWC and transfer Redbook CDs directly to the HAP-Z1ES in .wav format. also recommended JRivers software which allows you to up-convert Redbook CD to DSD which can then be transferred to the HAP-Z1Es. JRivers software has many other useful features as well.

Transferring any material in MP3 kind of defeats the advantage of having the HAP-Z1ES. Stay with a lossless format such as AIFF, FLAC, DSD etc.

I've managed to rip an SACD using FLAC with XLD and the tracks show up in an XLD window on my iMac, but I don't know how to make the HAP transfer app find the file.  It seems to look for files in iTunes.


I have XLD, JRiver, and Audirvana running on my iMac.  Yet iTunes seems to be the default app for music files.  Should I quit out of iTunes if I want to try ripping with FLAC?