Learn More About Listening to Music: MP3 vs WAV

Do you copy or 'rip' music CDs for your media player?

Did you know you have a choice of audio file formats - .mp3 or .wav?

Improve the quality of your music listening experience

Read on to learn more...

.mp3 vs .wav - what's the difference?

.mp3 and .wav are both digital audio file formats. .mp3 has gained popularity through file-sharing and downloading music tracks from the internet but if you want to preserve the full sound quality experience of audio CD recordings, then .wav is the file format to use when ripping audio tracks.

.mp3 compresses the digital data by excluding some of the original information. Compression - as the name implies - produces a smaller file - approximately one-tenth of the original size. The difference is achieved through excluding or limiting the range of frequencies contained within the original recording.

.mp3 format has revolutionized music listening and buying habits by offering a cheaper alternative to buying CDs, but the hidden 'cost' lies in a loss of quality of your listening experience which is not so easily quantified.

Why this matters to us?

Our bodies are capable of responding to a 'symphony' of different frequencies (our audible hearing range extends from 20 to 20,000 hertz cycles per second). Music provides a rich, broad spectrum of sound frequencies that our bodies respond to naturally during our 'real-time' listening experiences.

Everything in our physical world vibrates, whether it's a table, wine glass or part of the human body. Any object or 'system' responds most easily to its 'natural' or resonant frequency, producing the biggest spontaneous response with the smallest input of energy.

As we listen to any kind of music, sound waves pass through our bodies producing subtle movement in different areas, helping us release stress & tension at a physical level, creating a 'therapeutic' benefit to our listening experience. The wider the range of frequencies in the recording, the greater the potential benefit.

Choose quality over quantity

The quality of the audio files you choose when listening to music may have more impact on your health and well-being than you realize.

Download music sites like iTunes offer a huge selection of music tracks to buy. The majority of visitors download their music as .mp3 files because they don't realize they have a choice. .mp3 is the default download option in iTunes software but can be easily changed.

'Ripping' Good Quality Copies of your Music CDs

Enhance your listening experience

We recommend Exact Audio Copy (EAC), a CD ripping program that is one of the best available. It is extremely reliable and contains a wide selection of format options and - more importantly - it's free!

Most people assume that their CDs sound the same every time they're played, whereas in reality slight errors occur nearly every time a disc is read. Modern media like DVDs have in-built error correction to re-create the original data. Audio CDs use a strategy of 'hiding' errors instead of correcting them. EAC uses 'Secure Ripping' to resolve this problem.

Most CD ripping software simply read data once and assumes the results are correct. EAC reads each data block multiple times comparing results until they match, correcting the errors in the process. If they aren't, it reads them again. It can make the difference between a perfect copy and one that's just pretty close, preserving the life of your music.

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