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Question: What is the difference between various AAC audio formats I find in my library?

I have been an iTunes user for some years though not very knowledgable I fear. I'm about to transition from iPhone 5S to an Andriod phone and was going to try to move as much of my music collection to my new phone (LG V30).


I have many songs downloaded from the iTunes Store and ripped from CDs as well. My audio files include the AAC format which I believe is Apple's, as well as, MPEGs. What is the difference between "purchased AAC audio files," "protected AAC audio files" and just "AAC audio files." All three show up. I think I changed the import preferences for CDs with the format to "AAC" rather than MPEG for consistency. Perhaps, a bad move.


Which of these file formats may be transitioned and play on my new phone and which either can't be moved to the phone or if they can are unplayable? I wonder if I should just delete those that cannot be played rather than try to import to the LG V30.


I realize my ignorance is showing but some clarification would be greatly appreciated.


Thanks guys.

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Nov 10, 2017 7:38 PM in response to Charles Yearsley Jr. In response to Charles Yearsley Jr.

AAC files are from CDs.

Purchased AAC files are ones from the iTunes Store which don’t carry DRM.

Protected AAC files are ones from the iTunes Store which do carry DRM.


Check the phone’s documentation to see if it supports AAC; this covers the first two types. The third is basically limited to iTunes and Apple-made devices.


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Nov 10, 2017 7:38 PM

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Question: What is the difference between various AAC audio formats I find in my library?