best archiver? (for music)

Jan Henrik Sylvester me at
Sat Mar 14 04:46:21 PDT 2009

Gary Kline wrote:
 > my hearing is exceptionally good and while call myself an audiophile,
 > lectures.  when i tried to cut the quality even by a bit it was
 > evident immediately.  rar compresses these file to

If you care for quality (and call yourself an audiophile), you should 
read up on what you are doing before you start it.

To compare different compression rates, you have to do both from the 
original. Applying lossy compression twice -- even with the same codec 
-- might give you artifacts that will not appear with just one run.

For the same reason, you do not convert between lossy formats. Each 
might give different kinds of artifacts that you do not want to combine. 
(Of course, this does not really contradict the suggestions you got to 
try speex if you want to do a major reduction of bitrate for your voice 
mp3 files to save space.)

The difference between lame with good settings and a bad mp3 encoder is 
probably bigger than between some better codec and mp3. Considering 
that, you should always stick to some "--preset *" options with lame, if 
you do not know better.

Are you sure you can hear the difference between your flac originals and 
"--preset standard" lame encoded mp3? Consider a "double blind" test.

This is probably all in the lame FAQ or similar sources.

I do keep flac files after ripping CDs, too, but not because I think I 
can hear the difference between them and the ogg vorbis files I produce. 
I rather like the option to go to a different lossy format someday. (I 
must admit that I have never tested if I can hear the difference between 
an mp3 that come from the original or an mp3 that comes from a higher 
bitrate ogg. Actually, I doubt it.)

I really do not see the point in saving one or two percent space by 
applying lzma/7z, rar, or similar compression. The savings in 
electricity by not doing that are better invested in a new hard drive. ;-)

BTW: lzma is the default compression of 7z. GNU tar offers lzma, too, 
but without the 7z container. If you look at archivers/gtar history, you 
will see that it seems not to have finalized on the library (and 

I am not an expert at all. You better read the lame (and ogg, speex, 
...) manual and FAQ yourself that is hopefully written by some "expert".

Jan Henrik

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