Problems with Apple Lossless

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stevekim
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Joined: Wed May 31, 2006 6:16 pm

Problems with Apple Lossless

Post by stevekim » Wed May 31, 2006 7:35 pm

First of all, thanks to the writers of Max. It's just the kind of tool that I thought was missing from OS X. I'm a Mac newbie, and this tool is making my transition away from foobar2000 a little less painful.

I've encountered some funny behavior with Max and Apple Lossless (ALAC). I'm trying to move my library from FLAC to ALAC. Here's what I've experienced:

Code: Select all

1. Start with FLAC file 'Flac.flac'
    a. Loads fine in Max
2. Convert to ALAC via Max -> 'FlacToAlacViaMax.m4a'
    a. Max behavior
        i. Cannot be loaded.  'An error occurred while converting the file "FlacToAlacViaMax.m4a". Sample size not supported.'
    b. iTunes behavior
        i. Loads and plays fine.
        ii. Bit rate = "Unknown"
        iii. Can be transcoded to WAV -> 'MaxAlacToWavViaITunes.wav'
    c. Cannot be read by foobar2000 (Windows)
    d. Cannot be read by dbPowerAMP (Windows)
3. Convert to ALAC via iTunes -> 'AlacToAlacViaITunes.m4a'
    a. Max behavior
        i. Cannot be loaded.  'An error occurred while converting the file "FlacToAlacViaITunes.m4a". Sample size not supported.'
    b. iTunes behavior
        i. Loads and plays fine.
        ii. Bit rate = "812 kbps"
        iii. Can be transcoded to WAV -> 'ITunesAlacToWavViaITunes.wav'
    c. Can be read by foobar2000 (Windows)
    d. Can be read by dbPowerAMP (Windows)
        i. Can transcode to WAV -> 'ITunesAlacToWavViaDbPowerAmp.wav'
So, the upshot is that the ALAC files Max creates can't be transcoded to another format using Max. They appear to be mostly valid, though, since they can be put into an iTunes library and played. As other threads have mentioned, using iTunes to re-convert the Max-ALAC to iTunes-ALAC seems to be necessary to produce files that other apps are happy with. Even then, Max is unable to read in ALAC files, though.

Luckily, the actual data is fully intact. Converting 'Flac.flac' to a WAV file produces a bit-identical result to the WAV files outlined above.

Can the CoreAudio ALAC be so different from whatever black magic is happening inside iTunes?

Please let me know if you can propose any 'fixes' for this behavior. I'm willing to be a test subject. I'd volunteer to help out with code, but being new to Mac means I'm still low on the learning curve!

Thanks,
Steve

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sbooth
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Post by sbooth » Thu Jun 01, 2006 1:57 am

There was a bug in the Apple Lossless converting support and the Core Audio encoding support in 0.6.

I will release 0.6.1 later tonight which fixes the problem- I have had success in my testing, at least.

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