Jump to content

AppleTV and transmission format


Recommended Posts

As far as I understood it right - if I have AIFF file in my iTunes and try to play it via Airport Express, it will be converted to Apple lossless, sent to AE, reconverted back on the fly and played. Is it right? And is it the same with AppleTV? Does that mean that I can not avoid this double processing using Apple products and wi-fi, and that it makes no sense to have AIFF if you use wi-fi? Does that mean that the only way to play AIFF without decoding on the fly from AppleTV is to have those AIFF files on the AppleTV's hard drive? And finally - is it different with Sonos - does it transfers the real AIFF or WAV without compression?


The reason of these questions - I have to make choice with wireless music and I do believe that decoding on the fly may result in lower sound quality.


Link to comment

Yes, this is what happens as far as we can determine. Apple is not really specific here.


One thing is that if you sync the music so that it is on the hard-drive of the ATV and play it from there, then it will sound better than if it is streamed with WiFi. Dont ask me why, it just does. Even if the tracks are ALAC to begin with.


Steve N.

Empirical Audio


Link to comment

Thank you Steve.


And Sonos and SB will make the same (or sort of, with another type of compression) as I understood? So wi-fi solution itself is one of the bottlenecks in the system. Just don't understand why, as technically there is more than enough possibility to send AIFF even with ATV's limitation of 5mbps. It's a pity as I don't want to sacrifice even a smallest part of sound quality and 160 GB of ATV is not enough really... Really a pity, looked very attractive.




Link to comment

"And Sonos and SB will make the same (or sort of, with another type of compression) as I understood?"


No, actually each of these is done differently.


The SB3 does not encode the data. It ships 16/44.1 natively.


The Sonos on the other hand converts 16/44.1 into 24/44.1, which is a big win, and still bit-perfect. Better audio quality. Unfortunately, the jitter from it is so high that unless you use a reclocker, the benefits will not be realized IME.


Steve N.

Empirical Audio


Link to comment

"I don't think that the wifi itself, as protocol, can be a bottleneck.

the 802.11 G standard has a theoretical bandwidth of 54 Mb/sec, which in reality is about 24,7 Mb/sec.

The bitrate of compressed and even WAV files is much lower than this..."


Oh yes, I was not precise, I mean not bandwidth itself, but how the transmission is implemented.


Link to comment

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Create New...