MP3 vs aacPlus
We often get asked by our customers “What format is better, MP3 or aacPlus?”. If this is confusing to you, lets explain: These are both two different ways to encode (compress) audio to allow it to be transmitted over the internet. Both of which are offered by the SHOUTcast software.
The 2 formats have their advantages and disadvantages, namely aacPlus – which was introduced only a few years ago and offers excellent quality audio at much lower bitrates. Coding Technologies who produced the format claim that you can produce CD stereo quality using aacPlus at only 48kbps, whereas the MP3 equivalent would be 128kbps, this is great to lower bandwidth costs for radio stations and also great for listeners without high-speed broadband connections (which, lets face it – are few and far between in 2009).
MP3 has been around for years and is a very mature and hugely widespread format, the ideal thing about streaming in MP3 is that the support of it is native to all operating systems, including Microsoft Windows, Apple OSX and all the various types of Linux, Unix, BSD etc.
The SHOUTcast Flash Player also supports MP3, but does not yet allow aacPlus to be streamed via SHOUTcast.
So the decision is still yours, but at Shoutcheap.com, we always recommend good old 128kbps MP3 streaming to customers. We have some SHOUTcast Deals to help lower the cost of this if you run a smaller radio stations and keep you on budget. MP3 streaming will guarantee that you will be accessible to many more listeners than aacPlus and it also allows you to take advantages of Flash streaming on your website. With broadband being so widespread, listening to a 128kbps stream isn’t really a problem for people any more.