AAC Encoding Settings

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AAC Encoding Settings

Post by Solitaire001 »

I was interested in encoding my music in the AAC (M4A) format, so I purchased MediaMonkey's codec pack which included AAC encoding. After installing the codec pack and ripping a few tracks at the maximum VBR quality (100% = ~ 209 kbps) I checked the resulting files in MediaMonkey and I noticed that the bitrate on one of the songs reached 325kbps and most of the others were far higher than 209 kbps. Plus, when I set it to average bitrate and attempted to set it to 256 kpbs it actually set it to 152 kpbs and I wasn't able to set it higher than 152 kbps.

I've looked for information about these settings around the internet without success so I thought I'd ask some questions here since it might also help others using this codec pack for AAC encoding.
  • When using variable bitrate encoding, does the approximate bitrate shown indicate the projected average bitrate for the entire resulting file?
  • Does the bitrate shown in the resulting file indicate it's actual maximum bitrate? In my above example did a bitrate of 325 kbps indicate that the file reached a bitrate of 325 kbps sometime during the encoding? This is a concern because my player supports a maximum bitrate of 320 kbps with AAC files.
  • What is the effect of the Mid/Side stereo setting?
  • When using average bitrate encoding, is the bitrate you set just the average bitrate and the actual bitrate can vary quite a bit during encoding?
Thanks for your help in advance.