to JpopMusic.com's AudioTech Center.
Here, we keep you up to date on the best, free MP3 players and MP3
encoders available. You will be able to encode the highest quality
MP3s, and enjoy them through players that offer the highest quality
***AOL backtracks on Winamp media player*** June 2003
like AOL (parent company of Nullsoft) is planning to ditch WinAMP
3 and go back to WinAMP 2.x (also referred to as WinAMP Classic).
Not surprisingly, version 3 didn't take off with many of WinAMP's
core followers. News article here.
Version of MusicMatch MP3 Encoder*** May 2003
8 of MusicMatch MP3 Encoder has been released!
MP3 Players page has been updated with reviews of the latest software
MP3 Players and MP3 Encoders pages have been updated with the latest
MP3 software available, such as WinAMP 3, MusicMatch 7.5, and the
EasyLAME MP3 Encoder.
Jukebox Version 7 released!*** November 2001
latest version of MusicMatch Jukebox has arrived. The "basic"
version is, once again, free to download and use, and features a
sleek, new interface along with Pentium 4 optimizations and a streams
manager. Go to our MP3 Encoders page
for more information.
Version 3 BETA released!*** October 2001
over a year in development, WinAMP 3 has finally reached the BETA
stage in development. Code-named "wasabi," this version's
main benefit over the excellent version 2 series is its extensive
customization capabilities. Now WinAMP skins can take any form and
shape they desire, no longer being confined by the limitations of
the standard WinAMP interface. One can say WinAMP has finally caught
up to another popular media player, Sonique, in this regard. Other
notable, new features include support for multiple playlists, amedia
library for managing music, and integrated Gracenote (CDDB) technology.
Look for the final version to be released next year. In the meantime,
you're likely to see many beta updates.
your own ultra-high quality MP3s***
2 freely available programs downloadable off the Internet, now anyone
can make the highest quality MP3s possible from his/her collection
of MP3s! Interested in making your own MP3s? Go to the MP3 Encoders
section to find out how.
rival Ogg Vorbis releases full version***
a few days after the world got its first look at the updated MP3
music format (MP3Pro), rival open-source format Ogg Vorbis is ready
to reveal a major facelift. Ogg Vorbis, created by a team of independent
developers, has been floating around the Web for about a year. Like
MP3, the specialized computer program compresses standard audio
tracks into smaller sizes without significantly compromising sound
Ogg Vorbis is actually designed to result in better audio quality
than MP3 without any of the associated patent royalties for software
developers or music distributors. And as an added plus, popular
MP3 player program WinAMP already supports playback of Ogg Vorbis
follow Ogg Vorbis' latest happenings, check out their web
Multimedia and the Fraunhofer Institute, the companies behind the
MP3 digital music format, are releasing an upgraded version of their
music format Thursday called MP3Pro. MP3Pro is an improved version
of the popular mp3 coding-decoding (codec) format that has changed
the world of music online. Utilizing advanced psychoacoustic techniques
and music structure analysis, mp3PRO creates files that are twice
(or more) as compact as original mp3 files, with equal or better
sound quality, along with backwards and forwards compatibility.
addition to its combination of more compact mp3 files and superior
audio quality, mp3PRO offers backwards and forwards compatibility
enabling original mp3 files to play normally on the new mp3PRO player
and mp3PRO files to play on original mp3 systems. The best audio
performance is achieved when consumers both encode and decode music
files in mp3PRO
making an mp3Pro file, the new mp3PRO encoder splits audio recordings
in two. One part of the new files contains all the information found
in ordinary mp3 recordings to maintain complete compatibility with
original version players. At the same time, new or upgraded players
supporting mp3PRO will tap into another stream that holds high audio
frequencies, putting them together to make a higher-quality sound.
encoder and decoder, along with a WinAMP plug-in, are available
for download at Thomson
Multimedia and RCA.
releases Windows Media Audio 8 beta***
has once again come out with a new version of their Windows Media
Technologies suite for encoding audio and video. Windows Media Audio
7 was far from impressive, so naturally, one would expect version
8 to be much improved. Microsoft claims Windows Media 8 can achieve
near-CD quality sound at only 48kbits, and CD quality sound at 64kbits
- impressive numbers for sure. I took their slogan "Hearing
is believing" to heart and ran my own tests pitting this new
WMA8 format to MP3. Getting the necessary audio codec to support
playback of this new format was quite easy, as Windows Media Player
6.4 automatically downloaded it for me once I played my first WMA8-encoded
song. My conclusions were that a 64kbit WMA8 file was still significantly
inferior in quality to a 128kbit MP3 file. Sure, the WMA8 file is
half the size as the MP3 file, but Microsoft did claim WMA8 could
achieve near-CD quality sound at 48kbits, which should mean it should
at least rival 128kbit MP3s.
onto the more interesting Windows Media Video 8 format. Based off
of MPEG-4 video encoding technology, Microsoft claims WMV8 to be
able to provide near-VHS Quality at 250kbps and near-DVD Quality
at 500kbps. If this turns out to be true, WMV8 is going to be one
impressive and popular format.
give this new format a try for yourself, visit Microsoft's Windows
Media Technologies 8 page for more information and the encoding