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Qualcomm’s aptX Lossless promises CD-quality audio for wireless headphones

2021 has been an enormous yr for lossless music now that Apple has gone in on the higher-quality streaming and Amazon is no longer charging an added premium for it. However one of many essential challenges confronting lossless audio is learn how to play it wirelessly (at full constancy) on wireless headphones and earbuds. Qualcomm thinks it has discovered an answer with the brand new aptX Lossless, which is a part of the corporate’s Snapdragon Sound program introduced earlier this yr.

With aptX Lossless (which is technically an extension of aptX Adaptive), Qualcomm says it’ll be capable to stream CD-quality, 16-bit / 44.1kHz lossless audio over Bluetooth. The primary units to characteristic the brand new expertise are anticipated to be accessible in early 2022. Snapdragon Sound leans on the entire {hardware} chain for optimum efficiency — so each your Android cell phone and your earbuds or headphones might want to help it.

But when they do, Qualcomm says Snapdragon Sound will mechanically detect a lossless audio supply and be capable to play it at a lot increased information charges than beforehand attainable with aptX HD. The corporate has managed to outdo Sony’s LDAC by way of bandwidth: aptX Lossless can hit as much as 1Mbps in comparison with LDAC’s ceiling of 990kbps. There’s nonetheless some compression being utilized; CD-quality music sometimes has a pattern bit charge of 1.4Mbps. However Qualcomm is utilizing lossless compression to ship mathematically bit-for-bit precise audio replica.

In environments with a variety of wireless congestion, the bit charge will dynamically scale down as little as 140kbps to take care of one of the best audio efficiency primarily based on connection high quality. LDAC can battle in real-world eventualities while you’re pushing it to its bit charge limits, so it’s not shocking to see Qualcomm supply an answer to smoothen out the expertise.

CD high quality is the place aptX Lossless tops out. You’ll be able to nonetheless play hi-resolution audio tracks, however that’ll end in lossy streaming, so that you’ll wish to hold a wired answer round in case you’re huge on these 24-bit 96kHz recordsdata.

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