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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am about to launch into a large project to rip some more of my CDs, digitize the old vinyl, and unify music indexing, and found this thread on a very different forum. Thought I would share it with you since I found it to be very common sense. I am finding mp3s fairly harsh to my ears with the MKC's nice standard audio, so it is time to up the bitrate for me:

MyFord Touch, External drives, and Lossless Audio - FORD RAPTOR FORUM - Ford SVT Raptor Forums - Ford Raptor

A long excerpt may be useful to most readers:

"MyFord Touch, External drives, and Lossless Audio Ok, so I know there are a fair amount of people out there that won't care about this, but after doing a fair amount of searching and some trial and error I figure there has got to be at least a few other people that might benefit from this. So here goes.

Since I got my truck I've been using my iPhone as my sole source of digital audio. I've got just shy of 5000 songs crammed onto it and the only way I could get that many was to reduce them all down to a standard 128kbps bitrate. Many people are probably satisfied with listening to music at that bitrate... I'm not. In fact, most of my mp3's are at 320kbps and a good 1000+ were directed ripped in Apples Lossless format (essentially a direct 1 to 1 copy of the original cd track, but occupying less drive space than the same cd track). Just these 1000+ tracks take up close to 40gb. So even with my 64GB iPhone, there is no way they can all fit on there. Add on to that the fact that every time I unplug my iPhone to get out it's anybody's guess what's going to start playing the next time I get in and hook it back up.

After doing some reading I decided an external drive of some sort would work well, be it an USB memory stick or an actual external hard drive. With 128GB sticks going for well over $100 I opted to go with a usb powered external hard drive.
HGST Touro 1TB
A little overkill, but what the ****... I figure if they ever come up with a hack for playing videos over usb I'll be well set for adding some movies. (Just a note... If you plan on using an external hard drive it needs to be formatted in the FAT 32 file system. This can't be done using windows built in formatting utility. I had to download and use this program. 2Tware Fat32Format It worked fine and MYFord Touch has no problem with the drive now.)

Ok, on to the good stuff. Acceptable audio formats!
First a little bit about basic CD rips and lossless audio.
Almost all CD's are encoded at 44khz and 16bits. As such virtually all audio players will be able to play a file encoded at this rate and bit depth, providing the player recognizes the file format (.mp3, .aac, .flac, .m4a, .wma, ect...). A full audio cd ripped in an uncompressed WAV format will yield about 650mb of audio files. The same cd in the standard 128kbps mp3 format might be around 50-60mb. To do this the audio is compressed and bits are left out, meaning there will be an audible difference between the two. How big a difference depends on the person... as I said earlier, most won't care about this. To me they sound a little muddier and I tend to notice more distortion at lower volumes. Hence the reason I want to be able to use the "lossless" formats. They sound just like the original CD... which, in itself is slightly compressed from the master recording, but that's a whole other can of worms. ;-)

To take it a step further, I have 4 albums that are DVD-Audio. These are recorded at 96khz and 24bits, are often presented in stereo and full 5.1 surround, and are true lossless audio recordings. These are as close to the actual studio recordings as you can get. There may be a slight difference, but at this level of source material it has as much or more to do with the equipment playing it back.

On to my trial and error.

My first try was to simply transfer all my music to the external drive and plug it in to the Raptor. This sorta worked. Everything, except my Apple Lossless Files (ALAC)
I converted the ALAC files to uncompressed Wav. This worked slightly better, but not perfect. The direct cd rips(44khz/16bit) played but my 4 dvd-a rips(96khz/24bit) would not. on top of this I noticed that the MyFord Touch interface was having some trouble with the ID3 tag information on the wavs. The file names would show up, but nothing else. So that wasn't going to work.
Next I tried my old iPod Touch, which was loaded with a few of my ALAC files. It played perfect, leading me to believe that when a music player is hooked up it's doing the decoding internally and then transferring the music to the truck. (don't quote me on that, but that's what my logic is telling me.)

Anyway... this kind of bummed me out. I figured my next recourse was to buy an iPod Classic ($250) which would give me 160GB of storage space.
Then I stumbled across another file format I'd never used. Windows Media Audio (honestly... who owns a Zune). That's when the little light bulb went off. Microsoft SYNC... WMA... DUh!
So I tried this and am happy to report, complete success!
So here is what you should do if you want to get those ripped cd's sounding good.
I use the program dbPoweramp to rip/convert all of my music. It has tons of options and supports many types of formats. There are several plugins you can add on through the program as far as encoders go. The one you want for MyFord Touch compatibility is the WMA 10 encoder.

Once installed it is pretty straight forward. Select your music. Pick your encoder. Pick the encoder settings: Go with WMA 9.2 Lossless, and set the rest to match your source material (normally stereo, 44khz, and 16bits for cds). It's that easy. If there's any confusion, dbPoweramp has a pretty good guides and walk-throughs on their forums, and pretty good built in program help.

That's about it. As long as I was using WMA, I could get just about everything to play through my Raptor. Stereo-96khz/24bit on down all worked. The only thing that wouldn't was files encoded in 5.1 surround.
 

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I am about to launch into a large project to rip some more of my CDs, digitize the old vinyl, and unify music indexing, and found this thread on a very different forum. Thought I would share it with you since I found it to be very common sense. I am finding mp3s fairly harsh to my ears with the MKC's nice standard audio, so it is time to up the bitrate for me:

MyFord Touch, External drives, and Lossless Audio - FORD RAPTOR FORUM - Ford SVT Raptor Forums - Ford Raptor

A long excerpt may be useful to most readers:

"MyFord Touch, External drives, and Lossless Audio Ok, so I know there are a fair amount of people out there that won't care about this, but after doing a fair amount of searching and some trial and error I figure there has got to be at least a few other people that might benefit from this. So here goes.

Since I got my truck I've been using my iPhone as my sole source of digital audio. I've got just shy of 5000 songs crammed onto it and the only way I could get that many was to reduce them all down to a standard 128kbps bitrate. Many people are probably satisfied with listening to music at that bitrate... I'm not. In fact, most of my mp3's are at 320kbps and a good 1000+ were directed ripped in Apples Lossless format (essentially a direct 1 to 1 copy of the original cd track, but occupying less drive space than the same cd track). Just these 1000+ tracks take up close to 40gb. So even with my 64GB iPhone, there is no way they can all fit on there. Add on to that the fact that every time I unplug my iPhone to get out it's anybody's guess what's going to start playing the next time I get in and hook it back up.

After doing some reading I decided an external drive of some sort would work well, be it an USB memory stick or an actual external hard drive. With 128GB sticks going for well over $100 I opted to go with a usb powered external hard drive.
HGST Touro 1TB
A little overkill, but what the ****... I figure if they ever come up with a hack for playing videos over usb I'll be well set for adding some movies. (Just a note... If you plan on using an external hard drive it needs to be formatted in the FAT 32 file system. This can't be done using windows built in formatting utility. I had to download and use this program. 2Tware Fat32Format It worked fine and MYFord Touch has no problem with the drive now.)

Ok, on to the good stuff. Acceptable audio formats!
First a little bit about basic CD rips and lossless audio.
Almost all CD's are encoded at 44khz and 16bits. As such virtually all audio players will be able to play a file encoded at this rate and bit depth, providing the player recognizes the file format (.mp3, .aac, .flac, .m4a, .wma, ect...). A full audio cd ripped in an uncompressed WAV format will yield about 650mb of audio files. The same cd in the standard 128kbps mp3 format might be around 50-60mb. To do this the audio is compressed and bits are left out, meaning there will be an audible difference between the two. How big a difference depends on the person... as I said earlier, most won't care about this. To me they sound a little muddier and I tend to notice more distortion at lower volumes. Hence the reason I want to be able to use the "lossless" formats. They sound just like the original CD... which, in itself is slightly compressed from the master recording, but that's a whole other can of worms. ;-)

To take it a step further, I have 4 albums that are DVD-Audio. These are recorded at 96khz and 24bits, are often presented in stereo and full 5.1 surround, and are true lossless audio recordings. These are as close to the actual studio recordings as you can get. There may be a slight difference, but at this level of source material it has as much or more to do with the equipment playing it back.

On to my trial and error.

My first try was to simply transfer all my music to the external drive and plug it in to the Raptor. This sorta worked. Everything, except my Apple Lossless Files (ALAC)
I converted the ALAC files to uncompressed Wav. This worked slightly better, but not perfect. The direct cd rips(44khz/16bit) played but my 4 dvd-a rips(96khz/24bit) would not. on top of this I noticed that the MyFord Touch interface was having some trouble with the ID3 tag information on the wavs. The file names would show up, but nothing else. So that wasn't going to work.
Next I tried my old iPod Touch, which was loaded with a few of my ALAC files. It played perfect, leading me to believe that when a music player is hooked up it's doing the decoding internally and then transferring the music to the truck. (don't quote me on that, but that's what my logic is telling me.)

Anyway... this kind of bummed me out. I figured my next recourse was to buy an iPod Classic ($250) which would give me 160GB of storage space.
Then I stumbled across another file format I'd never used. Windows Media Audio (honestly... who owns a Zune). That's when the little light bulb went off. Microsoft SYNC... WMA... DUh!
So I tried this and am happy to report, complete success!
So here is what you should do if you want to get those ripped cd's sounding good.
I use the program dbPoweramp to rip/convert all of my music. It has tons of options and supports many types of formats. There are several plugins you can add on through the program as far as encoders go. The one you want for MyFord Touch compatibility is the WMA 10 encoder.

Once installed it is pretty straight forward. Select your music. Pick your encoder. Pick the encoder settings: Go with WMA 9.2 Lossless, and set the rest to match your source material (normally stereo, 44khz, and 16bits for cds). It's that easy. If there's any confusion, dbPoweramp has a pretty good guides and walk-throughs on their forums, and pretty good built in program help.

That's about it. As long as I was using WMA, I could get just about everything to play through my Raptor. Stereo-96khz/24bit on down all worked. The only thing that wouldn't was files encoded in 5.1 surround.
Midnite I care about this greatly and it's a big gripe of mine. I am huge music listener particularly in my car. I download a lot of live music shows. They are lossless Flac, hard-Flac 24 bit.

Sync is not capable of recognizing/playing lossless files off of your USB. You can play some lossless formats from your phone but the quality through Bluetooth is compressed and lost. Apple AirPlay will play uncompressed but sync doesn't have that capability.

Yes you can convert everything but what a pain! I have 5 TB of live music. It's time consuming and hard drive consuming. I just want to play it in the format(s) I collect/download. I find it ironic they are selling a high end audio system (revel) in the MKX but you still cannot play lossless formats!

My other huge gripe is they use an ID3 tag format that none of my live tracks order correctly! The order correctly on my USB drive but wil not display that way in sync. I listen to live shows and need the tracks in order. The sites I download from have them formatted by track correctly but the fields sync looks at do not match up. Drives me crazy. I have to create a WMA Playlist to have them ordered to listen to a show.

So now I gotta first convert my 24 bit hd-Flac into crappy lossless format, then I gotta create a playlist to listen to the songs in the right order. Too much time and work. I constantly change my shows so I am always doing this....not cool. :(
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
WMA is lossless, I have it on my USB in the MKC now, and it sounds remarkably better than the MP3s on the same stick.
I am probably going to 'base' rip my music in FLAC to a hard drive, then make some USB sticks in WMA for the critical listening catagory (jazz) and stay with MP3 sticks for the rock/oldies stuff.
 

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WMA is lossless, I have it on my USB in the MKC now, and it sounds remarkably better than the MP3s on the same stick.
I am probably going to 'base' rip my music in FLAC to a hard drive, then make some USB sticks in WMA for the critical listening catagory (jazz) and stay with MP3 sticks for the rock/oldies stuff.
Just wish they would make the popular lossless formats compatible without all the converting and playlists. The music (I download)is formatted correctly and perfectly...

I download new shows weekly so I'm always changing and having new files to convert and change..it would be never ending for :frown
 

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Forgot one more gripe about the music stuff...
I listen to long live tracks and a lot of times want to go back and listen at a certain point in the track. On sync you can only flip between tracks, nothing within the track.
You can do it listening through your phone but it's a tiny slider bar I don't want to be searching for when driving...
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I agree, it might be really nice to control timelines.
Has anyone out there tried to plug in a TB drive and see if it indexes properly?
 
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