dbPowerAmp tutorial on how to encode in AAC using iTunes’ AAC encoding technology (QAAC)

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Something a little bit different that I want to put out there for everybody to find and use. dbPowerAmp is probbaly THE single best solution to transcode music from a format to another on Windows and OSX. The trial available only limits MP3 encoding with the music converter so this tutorial can work on the free version, not only the “Reference” (paid version) of the product. HOWEVER, this tutorial is guranteed working for WINDOWS only.

But first,
The “legal stuff”:

  • QAAC libraries can be found here. See the website for the licence (if any).
  • The package also uses dBPowerAmp’s CLI Encoder, available here. See the website for the licence.
  • The original “encoder.txt” file used in the package was made by user “tscolin” on dbPowerAmp Help & Support forum. The post can be found here. I personally edited this text file to make a better encoder when I made version 1.1b.

Dependencies:

Dependencies mean that you have to have the following software installed in order to make the converter work. There’s no workaround to make it work without these, like it or not.

  • You must have iTunes v.10.5+ installed OR have “Apple Application Support” from iTunes package. How to here.
  • dbPowerAmp R12+ for 32-bit OR R15+ for 64-bit.

Installing:

  • Open your archive file (links at the bottom of the post)
  • Navigate to…
    • 32-bits (R12-14): C:\Program Files (x86)\Illustrate\dbpoweramp\encoder
    • 32-bits (R15): C:\Program Files (x86)\dbpoweramp\encoder
    • 64-bits (R15): C:\Program Files\dbpoweramp\encoder
  • Drop the two files and folder in the archive into that folder.
  • Do what you do to transcode your files, select QAAC in the dropdown and enjoy!

Quirks:

The encoder has some understable limitations.

  • LC AAC only works for 64kbps files and more.
  • HC AAC only works for 80kbps files and more.

So, if you try to use incompatible bitrates for LC (Low complexity) or HC (High complexity), the encoder will use the nearest compatible setting or dbpoweramp will just output an empty file.

Download links:

32-bit package (v1.1b)
64-bit package (v.1.1b)

If you have any issues, questions or comments, let me know in the comments below.

Cheers.

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