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Thread: Is there a lossy audio compression better (by comp. ratio) than OGG-Vorbis available?

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    Is there a lossy audio compression better (by comp. ratio) than OGG-Vorbis available?

    My situation is that I've started to use a linux based MediaBox. The problem was/is that in my country the digital storage hardwares (external/internal HDDs) are VERY expensive (maybe because the atrist-just, but anyway...), so I've chosen the strategy to use a general PC Motherboard & CPU/RAM with DebianDog (linux distro) to play media content on TV via home FTP (by the router), what is as much compressed as it just can be. So, I would save as much space for new contents as it could be with software coding solutions.

    On my only external HDD, the half of the contents are movies, and the other half are music and audio-books. And now, the HDD is almost totally full.

    Music and audio-books are in mainly MP3 - as it is always -, some of them are coded with OptimFrog, but those are the ones which I would store in lossless format.
    I've started to search, and what I've found yet is that the best one which can compress more - and which is playable realtime - is OGG.

    But I'm not sure. I haven't read over professional audio-compress forums yet, so I can imagine there is a better one, with much slower encoding time and more CPU consumption and what is not well-known therefore.
    So I would wait with starting to encoding all my audios, because I have to choose the best one - I mean "best" with "best compression ratio", with about a mid-quality.

    I would choose different encoding for music and for audio-books. Maybe you know, what I mean : audio books are speech, so fot those one a different compression would needed, which is specialised for speech.
    For speech (audio-books), a quality ~about~, with a 22KHz sampling rate and 8 - or 12, if available - bitdepth would be enought. About a quality with an audible quality radio stream (with built in speakers). I don't know, if that would improve compression more for *that* encoder, but in speak I really don't like heavy bass frequenties, or even not any bass at all. So bass registers could be eliminated from audio-book records too.

    For music, a good pop quality would be enough. I'm listening classical music too, and other genres (like 70's Disco, 80's Disco, jazz-noir, dark-(movie-)ambient music, chamber, etc), but my ears are not so perfect. A quality about equal with a 64kbps OGG would enough, I think.

    Slow encoding time is NOT a problem. At my workplace, I can use a quite strong PC to do the encodings, while I working on other things. And if an AM3 Phenom (3.2 GHz) would be OK with 2GB for decoding realtime, CPU/RAM consumption can reach that because I will use that PC ONLY for playing music and videos, NOTHING ELSE.
    But in that case I would like to use the BEST compression ratio, the most agressive lossy audio compression, what is available.


    Soooo.....
    Would You, professionals, recommend me a lossy audio compression with these specs?!

    THANKS IN ADVANCE!

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    Administrator Shelwien's Avatar
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    You can try mp3+packmp3: http://packjpg.encode.ru/?page_id=19
    Its also a part of precomp: https://github.com/schnaader/precomp-cpp

    From directly playable codecs, the best one is probably AAC (some advanced profile; HE-AAC if you're ok with 64kbit)
    http://wiki.hydrogenaud.io/index.php?title=AAC_encoders

    But mp3 recompression would probably give you better overall results (quality per size) than any normal codecs.

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    Yeah, Opus is the new king basically: http://opus-codec.org/comparison/
    It's not trading a lot of speed for quality though. Slow codecs are rather unpractical and nobody would want to invest heaps of money into something useful to a tiny group of enthusiasts. Developing a state-of-the-art lossy codec requires a lot of subjective tests performed on humans to get an objective measure. Psychoacoustical models are rather untrivial, so automated analysis of encoding results won't match opinions of humans.

    Recompression from a lossy encoded sound to something else (lossily or losslessly encoded) is in general a bad idea as:
    - turning lossy compressed file to losslessly compressed one won't bring back the quality - it will only increase the file size
    - recompressing from lossily encoded sound to lossily encoded sound, even when retaining the format (eg MP3 to MP3) is a bad idea either. With different input a psychoacoustical model in a lossy codec will give different decisions about what information to remove so recompressing over and over again (even when maintaining size, ie 128 kbps MP3 to 128 kbps MP3) will result in continuously degrading quality.

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    So, should I try Opus then?!

    Ok, I will try that... firstly, I have to find a linux encoder =)
    Once I saw that "Opus" name in the installed deadbeef audio player on that media-box machine, so I think the decoder is presented.

    Shelwien, I don't know if that packmp3 is a directly playable codecs, but I forget to highlight, that I need directly playable codecs.
    Waiting for decompressing before I can start to play would be a pain for me. Slow encoding time is OK, but non-
    directly playable compression would not. If not, I could use PAQ8-kx. But I can't.

    Thank for suggesting Opus, I will try.

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    Administrator Shelwien's Avatar
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    I don't really believe in these opus reviews - it'd be actually used somewhere if it was true.
    Probably used bad encodes with other codecs in comparisons, or weird bitrates.
    I'd still suggest to try AAC too.

    As to recompression - direct playback is actually possible, but somebody has to write player plugins or something for that.
    I think it'd be interesting if you could at least test it - like, whether you can get better results with mp3 encoder and packmp3
    that with other codecs.

    And of course, paq8 won't help you at all in this case.

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    Quote Originally Posted by paqfan View Post
    Ok, I will try that... firstly, I have to find a linux encoder =)
    Something like :
    Code:
    # apt-get update
    # apt-get install opus-tools

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shelwien View Post
    I don't really believe in these opus reviews - it'd be actually used somewhere if it was true.
    Probably used bad encodes with other codecs in comparisons, or weird bitrates.
    I'd still suggest to try AAC too.
    MP3 is 24 years old.
    AAC is 20 years old.
    Opus is 5 years old.
    AAC had 20 years to replace MP3 and it doesn't seem it succeeded.

    Opus is actually in widespread use thanks to YouTube. Google chose to use Opus instead of Vorbis because Opus gives superior quality.

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    > Opus is actually in widespread use thanks to YouTube.

    Uh, can you give me a youtube link with opus audio?
    I only see AAC?

    Sure, I'd believe that opus is better at speech-codec bitrates, but at 48kbit+ it seems to be very similar to AAC even on
    pro-opus comparison graphs, and I kinda doubt that it was the best possible AAC.

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    http://wiki.hydrogenaud.io/index.php...istening_Tests

    unfortunately only low bitrate tests.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shelwien View Post
    Uh, can you give me a youtube link with opus audio?
    I only see AAC?
    It depends on what browser you're using, in google chrome every video will play using VP9+Opus. Other browsers without support for playback will be sent H.264+AAC. See the browser compatibility and look at "VP9 and Opus in WebM" over here: https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/..._media_formats.

    Back to the initial question, from my own quick bit of testing here's what I'd say each encoder can use while still being reasonably transparent. The Apple AAC-LC encoder can go down to about 96kBit/s, the Apple AAC-HE encoder can go to about 64kBit/s, and opus can go to about 48kBit/s. Although it should be noted that the AAC-HE encoder sounds awful at 48kBit/s, especially in high-pitch noisy sounds like hi-hats.

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    Opus is really the way to go, has good open source tooling works just well for everything without thinking much about configuration options. I would not start messing with the AAC variants unless you are bound to legacy devices because Opus is superior. It just solved the question of audio codecs (which is also a legal question) and I don't believe we will see other codecs to come up in the next years. Opus is mandatory for WebRTC so it is found in major browsers.
    http://listening-test.coresv.net/results.htm (here again the first link from the hydrogen wiki)

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    Never recompress audio from lossy to another lossy format, leave your mp3 as is, lossless formats I would't compress to lower than V2 (~192kb Lame mp3 setting). And external hdds are cheap like never before. btw 64kb-128kb rate music encodes sounds bad with any codec.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shelwien View Post
    > Opus is actually in widespread use thanks to YouTube.

    Uh, can you give me a youtube link with opus audio?
    I only see AAC?
    Here's an example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vp1sLbpVKR0

    While the video is playing, right-click anywhere on the video. You'll get a pop-up menu – click on Stats for Nerds (which is at the bottom of the list). Then in the resulting stats popup card, look at the Codecs line. On Chromium-based browsers, it will say VP9 and Opus for audio (Chrome, Opera, Vivaldi, and Brave).

    Microsoft Edge will also use Opus on that video, and presumably many millions of other videos. The only difference between Edge and the Chromium browsers here is that Edge will sometimes use AVC1 for the video codec instead of VP9. It depends on whether your system has a hardware VP9 decoder. If it doesn't, then Edge sticks to AVC1, which is H264. The reason is that VP9 is extremely complex and computationally expensive to decode, and it kills battery life compared to using H264/AVC1. Skylake and Kaby Lake have hardware VP9 decoding, though I think Kaby Lake's implementation is especially good and results in battery life comparable to H264.

    Browsers must have some way of telling YouTube whether they want VP9 or H264. You can force Edge to always use VP9 in the about:flags settings page.

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