Originally posted by The Vinyl Factory
The creators of the MP3 have officially written off the format.
As NPR reports, The Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits – a division of the state-funded German research institution that funded the MP3’s development in the late ‘80s – has announced that its “licensing program for certain MP3 related patents and software of Technicolor and Fraunhofer IIS has been terminated.”
iTunes and others now favor AAC (Advanced Audio Coding) files, which the Fraunhofer Institute also helped to create. According to Fraunhofer’s Bernhard Grill, AAC is “more efficient than MP3 and offers a lot more functionality.”
Streaming services on the other hand are, for the most part gravitating towards “Master Quality Authenticated” files.
It may be for the best. Last year, research conducted by the Audio Engineering Library found that MP3s and other low-quality compression formats essentially drain your music of emotion. The results showed that MP3 compression strengthened neutral and negative emotional characteristics (things like Shy, Scary, Sad) and weakened positive emotional ones (like Happy, Romantic, Calm).
In other analog vs. digital news, the vinyl industry continues to go from strength to strength. In December 2016, vinyl album sales outstripped digital downloads for the first time. A staggering amount of vinyl was also sold on Record Store Day this year – 547,000 albums in one week.