TODAY'S listeners want quality music and they are increasingly discerning in their choice of streaming services, as well as their audio hardware at home or in their cars.
In efforts to give them what they want, Apple Music has announced Apple Digital Masters, which is an initiative aimed at bringing the highest-quality recordings into a single place.
The initiative combines the company’s “Mastered for iTunes” offering into one global catalogue in the Apple Music and the iTunes Store.
The Apple Digital Masters features cutting-edge technology, the best practices and the best artist master recordings that give listeners a better streaming audio and digital download experience.
It is said that the audio quality has less noise and higher fidelity than ever.
“The piano is the hardest instrument to get right and this sounds amazing,” says Lang Lang, world-renowned concert pianist.
“The sound is incredible. I cannot hear any difference,” says Gustavo Dudamel, music and artistic director of LA Philharmonic.
Today about 75 of the top 100 US songs and 71 percent of the top 100 songs worldwide have been mastered this way.
However, despite the increase in the audio quality, there will be no change in the price of the music.
How it works
By encoding from high-resolution masters, Apple music engineers are able to capture all of the detail of a recording in a size that is convenient for streaming and downloading.
Using 24-bit files means less noise and higher encoding efficiency. Apple has distributed this encoder for free to mastering engineers worldwide and by using these software tools, engineers are able to create “test pressings” of exactly what the audience will hear.
The encodes are perceptually transparent to the original sources - the real difference is in size. The 256 kbps AAC tracks take less time and data to stream and download, allow you to keep more music with you, and yet have equivalent or better sound quality.
The result is music that is virtually indistinguishable from the original hi-res master recordings.
Among the albums in the region that have been processed with Apple Digital Masters incluide JJ Lin’s Message in a Bottle, Sezairi’s EP, Yuna’s Rouge and Yung Raja’s Mustafa.