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Topic: m4a to m4b converting ON A MAC

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Old 04-14-2005, 02:10 PM
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mtgilbert,

Welcome to the forums and thanks for posting back with the information that repairing permissions fixed your bookmarking problems. This suggestion was a guess at a likely solution, and since I've never encountered this problem myself it's very useful to know that this may work for other people. Repairing permissions is probably the most general-purpose fix for Mac problems; for more background on this and other general good maintenance information see this article.
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Old 04-15-2005, 12:09 PM
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Thanks for the welcome, moriornd.

I made another discovery which may or may not be known to many of you. When I converted mp3's into AAC format with iTunes, I had the bit rate setting at the default (128 kbps). Well, mp3's at 16 kbps were converted into 32 kbps and 32 kbps became 64. While this doubled the size of the file, I didn't think it was a big deal because I keep just a few podcasts on my Shuffle at any given time. Then I noticed that the sound became garbled partway through the 2 hour show, and the controls started behaving erratically (even turning off power took about 2 secs to take effect). I think the problem is the bit rate (or the file size, perhaps?) so I'm now careful to keep the bit rate for the AAC the same as the original mp3. Any thoughts on this matter?
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Old 04-15-2005, 12:16 PM
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16 kbps on your original mp3s is fairly low or intermediate quality and you can not improve quality above the original no matter what your settings. I use 32kbps stereo (to avoid bug) for audio conversions (even when original is mono) and 128 stereo for music. Some poster said that 40 kbps was about the max quality one can get out of audio. Audible Format 4, their best, is 32 kbps, next down is 16 kbps.

How large in mb is your file? I would bet that is the problem.

Last edited by robert; 04-15-2005 at 12:19 PM.
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Old 04-15-2005, 12:23 PM
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The 2-hour 32 kbps files ended up as 64 kbps and became about 56 MB. Is that high for the Shuffle, or for any iPod?
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Old 04-15-2005, 12:49 PM
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mtgilbert--

Many of audible format 4 files range between 60 and 110 mb, so I would think that 56 mb should work fine on your shuffle.

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Old 04-15-2005, 01:06 PM
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Thanks, dordale.

I'll play around with smaller files to see if the bit rate doubling is the offending factor, and not the size.
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Old 04-15-2005, 02:01 PM
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That file size should cause no problems at all. I would try converting again. See if you can get an original mp3 with at least 32kpbs and stick with that kbps all the way through the conversions. Just a guess that the wide gap in kbps as you convert may be the problem.
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Old 12-20-2006, 11:14 PM
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Question Problems converting .m4a files to .m4b

I'm using iTunes 6.0.1, OS 10.3.9, and trying to use Make Bookmarkable v2.1. I joined the tracks of my audiobook CD and imported it.

But when I select the new "joined" file and choose Make Bookmarkable from the iTunes Scripts menu, I get the message "The variable loc is not defined," and the file is not converted to .m4b.

Has anyone else had this error message? Thanks for any advice.



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