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iTunes question. convert mp3 to aac?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I was wondering if it were possible to convert my existing mp3 files into aac in iTunes? I see the option of converting to mp3 but no other options.... strange.
The bored one.
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The bored one.
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post #2 of 9
Quote:
Originally posted by Ichiban_jay
I was wondering if it were possible to convert my existing mp3 files into aac in iTunes? I see the option of converting to mp3 but no other options.... strange.

The "convert selection to..." option is dependent upon what type of encoding you've got selected in the import preferences. If you've got mp3 selected as your default import, that option will say "convert selection to mp3". Change your import setting to be aac and it will now say "convert selection to aac". HTH.
post #3 of 9
youre dealing with lossy foramts, so the quality of all the music you convert, unless its from an aiff or wav, is gonna drop. watch out particularly for any mp3's at 128kbps. i wouldnt convert those, as theyre already crappy enough.
post #4 of 9
If you want your songs in AAC, you should re-rip them from your original CDs. Don't just convert MP3 to AAC - it'll end up with something that sounds worse than either one.

Think of it this way. Here's a simulation of the data contained in a full, uncompressed CD:

Code:

ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ



So each letter represents a piece of data. But you don't need all the data to get a nearly equal sound. MP3 compression removes some of the data, like this:

Code:

A C EF H LMN PQR T WXYZ



So, all those gaps represent areas that were removed by the MP3 compression. You save space (in actuality, you save a lot more space than I depicted).

AAC removes different sections of data:

Code:

CDEFG JKLM OP RST W Y



AAC removes the same amount of data as MP3. However, AAC is smarter about it, and it removes data in a way that produces better sound at the same amount of compression. In both the MP3 and the AAC file, I removed ten letters.

So what happens when you convert an MP3 to an AAC file? Well, you take the MP3 data (which has already had parts removed) and remove any parts that AAC would also remove, leaving you with this:

Code:

C EF LM P R T W Y



Whoa! I just went from ten letters gone to sixteen gone! MP3 and AAC compression work in a similar way in that they remove certain frequencies from the uncompressed audio. If you convert to MP3 and then change the MP3 to an AAC, that means that any frequencies removed by either one will not be in the final music file.

In short, re-import your CDs in AAC format if you want AAC.
post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally posted by Luca Rescigno
In short, re-import your CDs in AAC format if you want AAC.

This issue comes up so often, we need FAQ for it.

Not that anyone would actually look there first, but we could at least paste a brief boilerplate warning about converting between lossy formsts into a response, and then a link to a full explanation.
We were once so close to heaven
Peter came out and gave us medals
Declaring us the nicest of the damned -- They Might Be Giants          See the stars at skyviewcafe.com
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We were once so close to heaven
Peter came out and gave us medals
Declaring us the nicest of the damned -- They Might Be Giants          See the stars at skyviewcafe.com
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post #6 of 9
Why do you want to convert your MP3s to AAC in the first place?
post #7 of 9
My reason for doing it is to save space. And I could not re-rip because a lot of my music is stolen right from the mouths of hungry artists.
proud resident of a failed state
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proud resident of a failed state
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post #8 of 9
Quote:
Originally posted by groverat
My reason for doing it is to save space. And I could not re-rip because a lot of my music is stolen right from the mouths of hungry artists.

I think in that case you may as well convert the MP3 to an MP3 at a lower bit rate. That way, you won't run into the same problems I mentioned. It'll just reduce the amount of room they take up. So, if you have a bunch of 224 kbps MP3s, you could convert them to 160 kbps MP3s with a minor loss in quality.

Actually, I don't know what is worse - moving from high-bitrare MP3 to low-bitrate AAC, or low-bitrate MP3.
post #9 of 9
Way to pull this thread off topic, guys. I was just answering his question. I thought about going into detail about why you shouldn't do it, but that's been hashed and rehashed before.
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