There’s been a lot of discontent for WMA over at hydrogen audio, do they just hate microsoft or is MP3 really better?
It all depends on the encoder used and compatability.
MP3 has become a more open standard, even though its wrapped up in licences and royalties that could have bought it to its knees. MP3 can give very good audio quality and, personally, it is better than WMA.
Does MP3 offer better sound quality than WMA? I play music on my computer (that ripped and compressed the CDs), so compatibility isn’t a problem.
Hydrogen audio says that 192kbps or greater MP3 is transparent, is that also true for WMA? (They have this WMA pro that they say is more efficient than WMA, and tops off at 192kbps.)
Is the best encoder for WMA WMP itself?
For MP3, does any free encoder use the Fraunhofer codec?
The Fraunhofer codec is one of the worst codecs there is for MP3 creation. They also charge a licence fee for its usage so I doubt you will find any free software that uses it.
Lame on the other hand is free (uses different code that is not under patent to Fraunhofer to produce a better MP3 file) and is also alot better than Fraunhofer’s version. There are a few programs that use Lame and you can also download a stand alone encoder.