FR: AAC 320k CBR and Ogg 320k ABR

Sonnox Toolbox has FH AAC 320k CBR encode setting. Foobar2000 has Ogg 320k ABR encode setting. Spotify advertises their premium as 320k Ogg.

Seems odd Wavelab doesn’t have these common bitrates.

It’s there:
2018-01-26_23-07-55.png

Thanks PG, but it’s not there on my system. WL 9.5.15. Latest Win 10. I’ll check on another system.
Wavelab AAC no 320k cbr.png

I don’t know. I see the same thing on another system with Win 10 Creators latest updates (like the first system), but other manufacturer. WL9.5.10 on this system. And I see the same thing with Wavelab 8.5.30 on the first system. No 320k.

I think I finally figured out what’s going on with the AAC CBR 320k, but it doesn’t seem right. You have to explicitly set the Sample Rate, or the AAC menu doesn’t show 320kbps. I always use Match Input for sample rate, and that doesn’t seem to affect any of the other codec’s available bit rates, so it’s kind of confusing that the AAC is like that and omits 320k with Match Input. And it doesn’t seem consistent when you do select different explicit Sample Rates: 44.1 doesn’t give you 320k (like it does with Sonnox FH Toolbox). 48 does give you 320k and others. 88.2 gives you 576k only. 96 gives you 320k and others.

Also, it would be nice to get an Ogg 320k selection, because as it is, you can’t make a Spotify Premium preset at 320k Ogg for Encoder Checker.

You have to explicitly set the Sample Rate, or the AAC menu doesn’t show 320kbps

I don’t need to do so here.

That’s exactly what I see here. I have to specifically change the sample rate to 48kHz to get 320k. It’s not supported at 44.1.

Bob, I remember seeing the same topic in a previous thread here:
https://www.steinberg.net/forums/viewtopic.php?f=244&t=118129&p=642309&hilit=AAC#p642309
I note that PG states:
“44100 + 320 is not meant to be supported by the encoder”

I guess this is the reason 320 is not available at 44.1?

Thanks Stingray. I didn’t even remember that. It’s bizarre that Sonnox and Winamp have 44.1 320kbps CBR Fraunhofer AAC. How do they do it? And bizarre that Wavelab supports every 44.1 CBR bitrate except 320k, which one would think the most common. (44.1 supposedly supports all the bitrates in my screenshot). And of course the Apple AAC encoder supports 320k at 44.1.

Mustn’t it be a FH documentation mistake saying 44.1 doesn’t support 320k if Winamp and Sonnox do it with Fraunhofer?

I don’t know. It might be one of those things where certain developers do not strictly adhere to the ‘official’ recommendations.

It might be. But another program that does FH 44.1 320 CBR AAC is xRecode. It just doesn’t seem likely that at least 3 companies - Sonnox, Winamp, and xRecode would all be doing it wrong. Doesn’t it seem more likely the FH documentation was wrong?

And does it make any sense at all? Wavelab FH 44.1 CBR AAC supports 96, 112, 128, 160, 192, 224, 256, 448, 512.

But not 320 ???

What could possibly be the reason for that? Isn’t it likely a documentation error?

This is possibly the least important thing in the world because the FH AAC hq VBR is probably the same quality as the 320 CBR would be (as said in the other thread), but I think many users using Wavelab including me wouldn’t know that. I don’t know for sure, but I’m testing it with the Sonnox.

It’s just totally weird the 320 CBR is not there in Wavelab.

You can see all combinations from the documentation:


I think that all AAC encoders that use the FH encoder, can’t deviate from it, in practise.
Not having 44.1 / 320 kbps and having 48k / 320 kbps means that the 320 kbps benefit only makes sense with 48k.

Thank you PG, I really appreciate the information. But according to that chart 256kbps shouldn’t be available at 44.1KHz either because the cutoff is between 255999 and 256000.

I think the other programs are taking a bit more liberty providing what the user might be expecting to see, and what they’re able to make. Being able to make 44.1 AAC at whatever bit rate they want.

I’ve tested the Fraunhofer AAC in Sonnox at 44.1KHz making 256k CBR AAC and 320k CBR AAC. The results are different, and the 320k CBR tests closer to the source by about 4dB. Testing with Diffmaker and standard DAW null diff crosschecking with Diffmaker, the amount of difference varies with the source material, in my past testing from 1 to 5dB.

This sort of testing might be questionable, but I think it’s relevant, and it’s consistent. I possibly can’t hear the difference, but since they are different, somebody somewhere can.

You must keep in mind that AAC, MP3, etc… is about removing information from the signal.
Going from 48k to 44.1k is also about removing information from the signal.
Therefore, the 2 might be “competing”. This is why, in “math practise”, a big kbps with a small sample rate does not make sense, and also why a high kbps “requires” a high SR.

That makes sense, but every commercial file is 44.1, and also “high” kbps. Everything on Amazon is 320k (although they might be using equivalent quality VBR now), and that number just seems to be missing in the Wavelab AAC, when it’s common in every other program I know.