Lossless audio explained: sorting the FLACs from the ALACs
Know the difference between lossy, lossless and hi-res audio
TechRadar.com reports that thanks to the PC, the iPod and then the smartphone, the music world was once ruled by the 128kbps MP3 file. Our music was mobile, and heavily compressed, and to anyone who had been used to CD or vinyl, it sounded pretty terrible. Lossy MP3, WMA and AAC music ripped from CDs or downloaded was the way of things … until recently.
Cue a new dawn of music downloads and streaming services that deal in music that’s as close to the original Studio Master as possible, and called either lossless audio, or the often-confused Hi-Res Audio. Hang on … there are two new lossless music formats?
What is lossless audio?
In its purest form, lossless refers to uncompressed music. “Lossless audio is the unmodified output of the recording process, it’s the most accurate representation of output of the recording process that exists,” says Gilad Tiefenbrun, CEO at hi-fi and audio equipment company Linn, which pioneered Studio Master downloads in 2007.