MP3 music files lack the emotion of lossless audio confirms new study
According to new research, MP3 music is drained of emotion. Compared to its hi-res audio counterparts; MP3 music and other low quality compression formats strip music of its emotional qualities. The study was carried out by the Audio Engineering Library.
Lower compression formats have a statistically negative effect on “the timbral and emotional characteristics” of a track.
The study is titled The Effects of MP3 Compression on Perceived Emotional Characteristics in Musical Instruments.
They compared compressed sounds over ten emotional categories over varying bit rates.
The results indicated that MP3 music compression contributed to the strength of negative and neutral emotional characteristics.
The negative emotions that MP3 music strengthens are sad, shy, and scary. It also weakens positive emotions such as calm feelings, romantic feelings and happiness.
Anger emotions less affected
Meanwhile, the anger emotion appeared to be more or less unaffected. The study suggests that the background growl added by compressing MP3’s is what causes the negative feelings. The Audio Engineering Library indicated that the background artefacts in low quality compression music are what sound a lot like a growl.
According to the study certain instruments are affected more than others. The trumpet is affected the most while the horn is affected the least. This is good news for all those who are vehemently against MP3’s.
This research is great evidence to back up everyone who makes the argument for hi-res audio quality. Listening to downloaded MP3 music on your phone doesn’t offer the same emotional benefits as streaming or listening to hi-res audio on your computer with a fat set of headphones or good monitors.
There is now some scientific proof giving credence to the fact that you experience a lesser quality of listening, when playing MP3 music. They may take up more space, but WAV files will offer you a greater listening experience and of course work better in your DJ sets.