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What is AAC

Rob Parsons Updated on Apr 15, 2022 4:22 PM


Short for Advanced Audio Coding, AAC is a lossy audio compression standard. Based on MPEG-2 and MERG-4 specifications, AAC was developed by AT&T, Dolby Labs, Sony, Nokia and Fraunhofer IIS with certain improvement with the intent of replacing MP3. In 1997, AAC was standardized by the Moving Picture Experts Group. it is true that AAC is a comprehensive audio coding standard. For one thing, AAC's multichannel and high sampling frequency make it perfect for DVD-Audio. For another, high quality sound with low bitrate makes AAC more acceptable for use in mobile communications, network telephone or online radio. Nowadays, more and more devices and applications are embracing AAC.

Related Article: How to Rip Blu-ray Sound Track to AAC File


  • AAC offers up to 48 full-bandwidth audio channels along with 16 low frequency effect channels.
  • Optimal compression rate is achieved to reduce the amount of space while conveying superior sound quality.
  • AAC supports as high as 96 kHz of sample frequency.
  • The coding efficiency of AAC is higher than MP3.
  • For the same sound quality, AAC audio files occupies less storage space than MP3. That is to say, you can put more songs into the library.
  • In the case of the same bitrates, AAC is ahead of MP3 in the quality of sound.

Compare AAC with MP3 in Specifications

  • Bitrate: AAC: as high as 512 KHz / MP3: as high as 320 KHz
  • Sample Rate: AAC: 8-96 KHz for AAC / MP3: 16-48 KHz
  • Bit Depth: AAC: 32 bit / MP3: 16 bit
  • Channel:AAC: 48 audio channels / MP3: 2 channels in MPEG-1 mode and 5.1 channels in MPEG-2 mode

Supported Devices or Multimedia:

YouTube, iOS ( iPhone, iPod, iPad, iTunes), most of the Nokia devices, BlackBerry, PlayStation Vita, Sony Walkman MP3 series, Samsung YEPP, in-dash car audio systems and many other Android devices.

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