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I love instrumental music, especially classical music, and I'm new to the "audio world". My question is simple maybe "stupid": what's the best lossy format (and bitrate) for my audios? Since it's not convenient for me to always keep large files on my laptop, I'd rather store lossless files in my external harddrive instead.

BTW. If there're multiple choices, could you please show me the differences between them? What are the advantages and disadvantages? I have no idea about what appropriate bitrate i should use.

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Look into using LAME encoder at the V0 setting. It has pretty good transparency. –  MDT Guy Mar 2 '13 at 5:34
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closed as not constructive by random Mar 2 '13 at 3:30

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

This depends on alot of factors. How good is your hearing, what speakers/headphones do you use. What D/A converter is used in your listening device.

The only way to determine this, is for you to try readily available codecs like mp3,aac,ogg. And just decrease the bitrate until you can't bear it any more.

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