HITS Daily Double

Iovine working with Apple in 24-bit crusade

GIVE A LITTLE BIT: Looks like Jimmy Iovine’s campaign to signiificantly improve sound quality in MP3 era has reached the right ears—those of Steve Jobs. Last week, the Beats Audio co-founder (who’s also rumored to be running some obscure record label) revealed during a showcase of the Beats-integrated HP TouchPad tablet and Pre 3 smartphone that Apple is said to be in talks with record labels to improve the quality of song downloads available from the iTunes Store from 16 bits to 24bits, CNN reported. Studio recordings are captured in a 24-bit, high-fidelity audio format, but before the masters are pressed tyo CD or distributed to digital sellers, they're downgraded to 16-bit files. Many Macs and some PCs support 24-bit sound, and the iTunes media player can play back 24-bit files, and yet none of this technology is being put to use. Why?" Iovine asked rhetorically. "I don't know. It's not because they're geniuses… Paul McCartney can master the Beatles albums all he wants, [but] when you play them through a Dell computer, it sounds like you're playing them through a portable television." (2/23a)