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Mykre

MP3 and 5.1 Sound

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Punters haven't heard of AC3.

AC3s aren't backwards compatible with MP3 hardware.

Fraunhofer IIS didn't invent AC3 so they want their own format.

Surround MP3s are smaller (but crappier).

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Interersting..... but do we really want another format/codec. It's bad enough as it is with AC-3, DTS, Pro Logic 2, dolby surround, SDDS and the rest. The under the hood settings for Dolby Digital alone are enough to have given me a headache over the years.

I'm hoping that by the time the next generation of consumer storage/playback devices such as the new higher capacity DVD's are in mainstream use then everyone will be able to store and playback 24bit/96kHz/5.1 PCM files along with FMV no problem. People are now so tuned in to data reduction artifacts that it takes a pretty efficent and complex algorthym to be worth the effort... either that or forced high data rates like on DTS.

Lets face it, MP3 as a compression algorthym is pretty old hat nowadays. The only thing that could be a ray of light in this is the fact that MP3 is as close to a 'standard' format that we have and maybe this new development could do the same for the surround world... but i'd be much happier if it was something that sounded better :/ But lets look at this realistically, every DVD comes with an AC-3 soundtrack, it problably is the standard for surround at the moment so what is the point of a MP3 surround? Urgh... i just remembered, Dolby are currently releasing a new better sounding DD... talk about oversaturation.

Sorry if this is all sounding rather negative, i just don't like the way that the format wars are headed... I mean, who can predict what is going to be the most popular format in 5... or even 2 years time.

It doesn't matter much to the consumer, most of the players work with pretty much everything so they wont even notice when it selects a different codec, but for creators it's a real pain in the ass.

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I don't see the market for any new surround formats just now. But in 5 years when a significant amount of music is on DVD-audio, with surround mixes, then people will want to have a small crappy surround storage medium; enter l33t surround MP3z.

Anyone downloaded the demo encoder? I don't have time to play with it right now.

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