Apple lossless versus Flac

I generally download music to my NAS as FLAC and then ask Asset to transcode to WAV. I downloaded an album from Qobuz this morning and wasn’t given a choice as far as I can recall, and it downloaded as Apple Lossless. It plays okay on my ND555 but should I have it transcoded to WAV? If so, what is Apple Lossless abbreviation in Asset? AAC? and there are several other possibilities that begin with the letter A.

Why not just convert it to FLAC?

You should be able to choose the format. And, if you have purchased the download, it should be visible in your profile. You should be able to download again in the format of your choice.

How do I do that ?

Assuming you have access to some sort of Windows, Linux or Mac computer there’s all sorts of free programs to convert from one format to another. Foobar2000 on Windows or freac on all 3 of those platforms

But would it sound the same as re-downloading the file from Qobuz as FLAC :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: :joy:

I was working on the assumption that option wasn’t available :slight_smile: That of course is the easiest solution.

I think the Apple Lossless abbreviation in Asset is m4a.

1 Like

I thought it was ALAC.

ALAC is the Apple equivalent of FLAC. There is nothing to choose between them sonically, both being lossless. ALAC files have an extension name of m4a. There is a Wikipedia article about it if anyone wants a quick summary.


Qobuz provide a list of formats to download including lossy versions in a drop down selection.

FLAC and ALAC give the same (lossless) bits and should sound the same. A few years back I preferred ALAC for some reason I can’t explain. But it was just on a few files so it was probably not enough data.

I usually convert both FLAC and ALAC to WAV. Older Naim-streamers seem to prefer WAV.

They are lossless. One could convert the ALAC to FLAC, then convert both the ALAC and the converted FLAC to WAV, and compare the two resulting WAV files bitwise or with a checksum program, and the results should be completely indistinguishable.

Besides, an ALAC or FLAC offered for download may well have been converted between one and the other (or from something else) before it is put on the download page.

The OP could go back to Qobuz and download the FLAC.:thinking:

Yes :slight_smile:

Transcoding to wav seems a bit superfluous for OP’s system anyway, the only scenario that has been described where transcoding might be useful was in the case of first gen streamers. The ND555 will stream FLAC or ALAC natively without any problems.

I think you missed the irony in my posting - intended to be implied by the imojis.

Coming from you I actually did see it, but I was afraid not everyone would :slight_smile: I failed to mention that, sorry

1 Like

Thanks for the replies. I set ASSET to transcode it to WAV although probably not necessary SQ wise.

This topic was automatically closed 60 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.