For best sound, is it necessary to rip CDs to uncompressed instead of lossless compressed format?

Yes, WAV is terrible with meta data. But I’ve found ALAC and AIFF to be equal in that regard.

I do rip most CDs into AIFF these days. But it’s more because of the theoretical benefits of being not compressed rather than actually noticing a significant audio difference between the two.

As mentioned, there are many different opinions on this topic.

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I hate everything Apple and have been forced to buy an iPAD for my streaming set up. The reason for wav ripping… just not a mac mini or mac anything. I have never used that platform in my life… My buddy was a Steve Jobs worshiper and I was a Waz guy… been a chief engineer at one time in my career… :slight_smile: I thought Steve Jobs was an idiot for the complete end to end control… I liked to tinker… :slight_smile:


I gave up on apple wav or mp3 and hired someone to re-copy all my CDs, ripped to flac. That hired hand was me. :smile: 500 CDs later no regrets; flac is my favorite format. Especially for streaming, I use ROON- Tidal for a high quality streaming experience, which is 95%+ of my listening mode. I do use compressed flac level 5 initially to save space on my laptop, then bought a 4TB drive for $85. Storage is so cheap. So, I have reduced my storage space from 9 large boxes to 1 little shelf of prized CDs.

Tip, now I buy box lots of CD at auctions, 100 to 250 per box for as low as $12 for 150, up to my limit of $25 (donate most of the ones I don’t keep to a local charity shop). I do buy an occasional new release, want to support my favorite artists. The PSA forum subject “What are you spinning now” does entice me to buy new releases. All of these CDs get ‘flac-ed’ :wink:

Oh yeah, welcome to the forum of very helpful people.



If your aim is best sound quality, that will come from a CD transport connected to the DAC.

I have been ripping CD’s and DVDs for 13 years. I have read all the debates on what is best. I rip everything to FLAC at the default compression rate. I have no regrets. I also choose to trust dbPoweramp to do the deed.

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What was the result of a sound comparison in your setup? You should decide based on that and your own convenience preferences, not on what people with different basic preconditions recommend.

IMO it doesn’t make sense for people who can’t hear a difference in their system to follow recommendations of people who can in theirs.

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I hate Apple too… They’ve become a bunch of thieving robbers…! Just bought a nice Samsung and am now looking for a nice WINDOWS/LINUX laptop…

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Use my Melco N1ZS10 network player to rip cd’s to uncompressed flac files, playing these with the Melco outperforms my PWT CD transport…


No surprise about that. My only experience with PWT was at a dealer show room in Singapore and it wasn’t worth a 2nd listen. My point is, the best sounding CD transport will sound better than the best sounding music server.

I venture to doubt.

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We missed you… need to get the Magico speakers worked into this thread… were you on travel. Disagree on the CD vs. streaming… I guess it depends on your streamer… a more thought experiment “best” than actual concrete comparison. In my situation, I use my DMP about 5% after setting up my streaming; however, I don’t have thousands of CDs. My streaming is better SQ than DMP. However, that is where the pesky “best” abstract term comes in… I use my ears and brain for comparison and no I can’t travel to Australia for a swap…

@jazznut - perfectly put… I am fortunate to have great hearing, a working brain (sometimes I wonder), and a strong will. It all comes down to hearing and I don’t put much stock in group think. There are so many variables to a full system and each piece of equipment and piece of infrastructure makes a difference. If you can’t tell the difference, who cares, don’t get caught up in the group think…

I suspect there would be a vast majority consensus from owners of both high-end transport and server that the transport sounds better. Certainly in my sphere of direct discussion with such owners known to me it’s 100% in favor of the transport sounding better. In my case I have one of the best servers, and the best transport, and the transport is better.

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@Brodric - I thought I explained, I don’t care what groups of people think. I sit in my music room and listen to the difference. Could care less what others believe, and that would include deities… owners of stereo manufacturing companies… these are thought experiments and what if… I will never own that equipment, I could care less… I concern myself with me… however, we aspire and thanks for adding the fuel for aspirations… reason I read magazines, go to dealers…

That’s right, I understood your point. But my starting point in deciding what to buy next is always the group. The group experience will whittle down all the options to a few which might best fit my application. From there I will focus my further scrutiny.

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What to buy next… hum… not going to buy a $30K CD player in lue of my DMP is as far fetched as me getting a Porsche… :policeman:‍♂ besides, I like my bat $hit crazy DMP display… man you never know what that thing will display…:vampire:‍♂

Only with Hifi or also with cars, watches, furniture etc.?

Is this behavior based rather on a need to buy nothing the group might not honor or on a limited will to invest in own comparisons?

The ‘objection’ to compressed lossless files seems to be that, if the decompression takes place in the same unit that contains the DAC, the extra cpu activity can generate noise that affects the digital to analogue conversion. It is not something which would worry someone of my coarse sensibilities, but it does seem to be a legitimate argument. If your server can transcode to WAV before the data is delivered to the DAC unit then the format in which the files are stored should not be relevant. I use the Minimserver/Minimstreamer combination, which can do this.

Which surprises me why they are going to persist with bat $hit crazy displays in the DMP replacement. They really need to get that sorted out in what comes next.

In my part of the world there are very few options that facilitate investing in own comparisons.