Very briefly for those who don't know, "Lossless" [compression] refers to compression that (theoretically) does not lose any sound quality in compressing the size of the sound file. "Losse" formats like MP3 and AAC compress files into 10%-50% of their original size, but do so by diminishing sound quality depending on the rate. They typically keep only the loudest sounds at any given instant and discard the rest. The better the [compression], the deeper the compression algorhythm goes into keeping less-loud but still subtly-audible sounds.
I am more of a sound-snob audiophile compared to others and I strongly resisted any [compression] because even CD-quality sound loses too much sound quality compared to analog recording. (The whole "cold, lifeless digital sound" vs. "warm, rich analog sound " thing). The music that I initially heard DJed from laptops also sounded hollow, tinny, and far less rich than the exact same songs played from CDs.
However, I slowly gave in when I realized that much of my disdain for MP3 DJs stemmed from poor playback equipment, not so much from poor recordings. Using an external sound card instead of the internal sound card often made up the difference I had perceived. Also, many of the early MP3/computer DJs were college kids who swiped their MP3s off the internet, which tend to be of poorer quality (96 or 128 rates) than the 192, 256, or 320 rates I used when I ripped MP3s. They also were using crappy MP3s that had been [compressed] and re-[compressed] several times (losing sound quality each time) instead of good MP3s that had only been ripped once and thus lost sound quality only once.
Being an audio snob, I would prefer using a lossless format. However, they just are not widely playable off a computer. Thus, my answer so far has been to stick with MP3 because it is universally useable, not just on my computer, but on my car stereo, many portable discmen, my IPod, my DVD player, and lots of other places. MP3 is not at all the best of the [compression] methods, but it is so engrained that it seems like it would take a new digital revolution to unseat it.
Last edited by Lawrence
on Sun Aug 27, 2006 2:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.