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.WMA files


Captain FuKu
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So, believe it or not, I don't often download audio/music files from the net, but when I have in the past, it was always in MP3 format and I could listen to it using Music Jukebox and also easily burn it onto a CD. But I ran across one site hosting some music files, but they are all "streaming" and in.wma format.

 

So, what exactly is this and what program do I need to listen to this? Yeah, I know this is probably a stupid question for most of you computer wizards but like I said, I never ran across this format before. And also, is it possible to burn a.wma file onto a CD like an mp3, or do I need to convert it to something else before?

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WMA = Windows Media Audio

 

Microsoft's "competitor" to MP3, but not nearly as good. WMA is Windows Media Player's proprietary audio format. If you ask me, I wouldn't use WMAs over MP3s, but that's just me.

Edited by Agozer
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WMAs are just as cool as MP3s imo. I have a MiniDisc player and the formats I can convert onto the mini discs are MP3s, WMAs and WAVs.

So it just shows you how common they are. Plus every CD I rip is in WMA format and have no problems.

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Ok, heres the run down. WMA files are perfect if you plan on using them for let's say, saving space on your harddrive or want to put a massive amount of songs on an MP3.

 

WMA's audio encoder is very different to MP3 and it's compression ratio is better almost at no cost of quality, think how MP3Pro is a 64KBPs MP3, but with special software that you can download, that 64KBPs MP3 can sound like a 192KBPs MP3 (Which is the theoritcal KBPs for CD-Quality Music). WMA uses a simply compression system that is very different yet very similar to OGM (OGG's parent for sound files, OGG is the true original meaning for both Video and Audio codecs) a 320KBPs MP3 in OGG could be just about 500KBPs OGM (Which will be much bigger then an MP3, but perfect for LOSSLESS to LOSSY conversion). With WMA, you can take the same MP3 and convert it to a lower bitrate(44khz/320KBPs MP3 to 44khz/192KBPs WMA) to WMA without that much noticeable quality loss.

 

Overall: WMA perfect for saving space with the kicks of MP3. But if you want perfect sound, Lossless all the way.

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Speaking of, Whats a moderately priced mp3 player? My mom just got a ipod mini and that thing looks righteous but its going for like 250, and i just spent about 800 on the comp so thats completely out of the picture.

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Depends on your fancy.

 

128MB MP3 players are obviously cheaper, but i've crammed about 56 songs onto one of those and lasted me for a few hours.

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Alright, so I'm gonna need to use Windows Media Player to listen to this on my computer, right? And I can't burn it onto a CD like an mp3 file? Yeah, I'm lost.

WMAs are almost the same as MP3s and yes you can burn them into audio tracks on an audio CD.

 

I listen to every music file with Windows Media Player 9 and listen to music on my minidisc player. WMAs can be converted into ATRAC3 (mini disc tracks) and Audio tracks for CDs.

 

PS - I burn the audio CDs with WMP9, does that make it different?

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