FireFly transcode x to WAV vs. x to AIFF?

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  • #338
    jelockwood
    Participant

    I note that according to the FireFly documentation it will transcode from a variety of audio formats (e.g. Flac, Ogg, etc.) to WAV format for the benefit of clients (like iTunes) that cannot natively play Flac etc.

    However my question is whether there is any benefit to FireFly instead transcoding to AIFF format (which is identical in quality to WAV) and equally widely supported (e.g. by iTunes and the Roku Soundbridge amongst others).

    At a minimum AIFF can support embedded album artwork whereas WAV cannot. Apple do this in iTunes for AIFF by using a RIFF chunk which contains a set of ID3 tags.

    Note: the SlimServer software (by SlimDevices) can also read these tags and embedded artwork (from AIFF files).

    Would AIFF have other advantages like better handling of track length reporting (for transcoded streams)?

    #4963
    rpedde
    Participant

    @jelockwood wrote:

    At a minimum AIFF can support embedded album artwork whereas WAV cannot. Apple do this in iTunes for AIFF by using a RIFF chunk which contains a set of ID3 tags.

    But it wouldn’t on a transcoded stream.

    Would AIFF have other advantages like better handling of track length reporting (for transcoded streams)?

    Not really, as the stream length is in the header, and the fundamental problem with length is that you don’t know the number of samples in the file until it’s already transcoded. 🙁

    So at the time you stream the header, you have to guess. I’ve got a slot in the database that I can poke the final frame count into, and I hope to cache the “real” frame count so that the second time you play the song it will be sample-for-sample correct, but I haven’t implemented that yet.

    So no, unless there are more players that play aiff than wav, it’s a wash.

    – Ron

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