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Encoders 320+ kbit/s

If you´d like some other audio codecs to be added to this section, please drop us a line with your proposal.

AAC CBR@320.4 (Winamp 5.2)
17.59
~7%
Vorbis VBR@313.4 (Xiph 1.3.1)
16.63
~16%
mp3 CBR@320.2 (Lame 3.97b2)
13.39
~13%
mp3 CBR@320.2 (Lame 3.90.3)
10.72
~7%
AAC+ CBR@320.2 (Winamp 5.2)
9.25
~14%
SBC CBR@372.1 (Max. bitrate)
7.79
~4%
ATRAC3plus CBR@353.0
6.99
~2%
wma 9.1 CBR@322.8
6.59
~3%
ATRAC SP CBR@292 (MD)
6.41
~4%
SBC CBR@328.0 (High Quality)
5.70
~3%
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AAC CBR@320.4 (Winamp 5.2) - MPEG-2 AAC Low Complexity CBR, 320.4 kbit/s FBR
CODER: LC-AAC Encoder v1.2 from Winamp 5.2 build 449 Beta
- CD Ripping
- Bitrate: 320kbps
- Channel Mode: Independent Stereo
- Bitstream Options: MPEG-4
- 44100 Hz
DECODER: Winamp 5.2 build 449 Beta
- Disk Writer plug-in v2.1

AAC+ CBR@320.2 (Winamp 5.2) - MPEG-2 AAC High Efficiency CBR , 320.2 kbit/s FBR
CODER: aacPlus (HE-AAC) High Bitrate Encoder v1.2 from Winamp 5.2 build 449 Beta
- CD Ripping
- Bitrate: 320kbps
- Channel Mode: Independent Stereo
- Bitstream Options: MPEG-4
- 88200 Hz
DECODER: Winamp 5.2 build 449 Beta
- Disk Writer plug-in v2.1
- Convert to format: PCM 44100Hz; 16bit; Stereo 

ATRAC SP CBR@292 (MD) - ATRAC1 SP (Type-R) 292 kbit/s (Minidisk)
ENCODER: h/w DSP (Type-R)
- digital recording
DECODER: h/w DSP (Type-R)
- digital playback
- time warping 

ATRAC3plus CBR@353.0 - ATRAC3plus 352 kbps (353.0 kbit/s FBR)
ENCODER: SonicStage 4.3.01.14050
- Import a CD
- Format: ATRAC
- Recording Quality: High
- Bit rate: 352 kbps
- 44100 Hz Stereo
DECODER: SonicStage 4.3.01.14050
- Save in WAV Format

mp3 CBR@320.2 (Lame 3.90.3) - MPEG-1 Layer 3 CBR, 320.2 kbit/s FBR
CODER: Lame 3.90.3
- usage: lame -b320 -h ref.wav out.mp3
- 44100 Hz Stereo
DECODER: MAD 0.15.2b

mp3 CBR@320.2 (Lame 3.97b2) - MPEG-1 Layer 3 CBR, 320.2 kbit/s FBR
CODER: Lame 3.97b2
- usage: lame --preset insane ref.wav out.mp3
- 44100 Hz Joint Stereo
DECODER: MAD 0.15.2b

SBC CBR@328.0 (High Quality) - Subband codec for Bluetooth A2DP profile, CBR, 328.0 kbit/s FBR
CODER: SBC Encoder LIB Version 1.5 (Philips)
- usage: sbc_encoder -jv -r328000 -oout.sbc ref.wav
- High Quality setting recommended by Bluetooth SIG
- 44100 Hz Joint Stereo
- bitpool:53, bands:8, allocationn method: SNR
DECODER: SBC Decoder LIB Version 1.5 (Philips)

SBC CBR@372.1 (Max. bitrate) - Subband codec for Bluetooth A2DP profile, CBR, 372.1 kbit/s FBR
CODER: SBC Encoder LIB Version 1.5 (Philips)
- usage: sbc_encoder -jv -oout.sbc ref.wav
- max. possible bitrate for SBC codec
- 44100 Hz Joint Stereo
- bitpool:61, bands:8, allocationn method: SNR
DECODER: SBC Decoder LIB Version 1.5 (Philips)

Vorbis VBR@313.4 (Xiph 1.3.1) - Ogg Vorbis, 313.4 kbit/s FBR
CODER: OggEnc v2.87 (libVorbis 1.3.1)
- usage: oggenc2 -q9 ref.wav
- 44100 Hz Stereo
DECODER: OggDec v1.9.7 (libVorbis 1.3.1) 

wma 9.1 CBR@322.8 - Windows Media Audio 9.1 (Standard) CBR, 322.8 kbit/s FBR
ENCODER: MS Windows Media Encoder 9.00.00.2980
- Mode: CBR
- Audio format: 320kbps, 44 kHz, stereo CBR
DECODER: MS Windows Media Encoder 9.00.00.2980

How to read the ratings

Rating bar graph

The ratings are updated live as new participants add their grades to the system. A rating bar consists of the following elements:

#1 - Device or technology being tested.

#2 - Value of actual perceived audio quality (rating) which is also indicated by the bar length #3. Anchor points could be interpreted as follows:

In most cases using this device/technology:

1.0 – you will hear heavily distorted sound
2.0 – you will hear unpleasant sound artifacts
3.0 – you will hear distinctly audible but tolerable sound artifacts
4.0 – you will hear faintly discernible sound artifacts
5.0 – you will not hear any sound artifacts
above 5.0 – all sound artifacts will be beyond threshold of human perception with corresponding perception margin

#4 and #5 - the "high" and the "low" of a rating. As each device is tested under nine different sound samples, there are nine different local ratings for a device. In fact, the actual rating #2 is the average of those nine local ratings. The highest and the lowest ones are indicated. Big gap between them means that sound quality of device/technology is not consistent enough. It varies with type of sound material: music of different genres and complexity, voice with or without music, noisy/clear recordings etc. The lowest local rating is more important in this sense as it indicates worst case behavior of tested device.

#6 - Accuracy of rating. It is also indicated by the color of bar - more accurate ratings have darker bars and less percentage values. Accuracy depends on number of grades returned by participants. In most cases 5% or less is OK.

#7 - Ruler for convenient estimation of "highs" and "lows".

For devices with small impairments (not audible in ordinary listening tests) SoundExpert amplifies their sound artifacts to some predefined extent. Ratings of such devices are calculated analytically taking into account both the grades received and the amplification applied. They are above 5th grade on the scale showing certain quality headroom of such devices.