Audiophiles should break out their latest Pink Floyd vinyl rips and get the party started, as Microsoft just gave them a serious reason for celebration. Among the oodles of performance optimizations, visual tweaks and productivity improvements, Windows 10 will contain a key life-easing goodie for folks preoccupied with high-fidelity sound reproduction.
As Gabriel Aul first revealed on Twitter, FLAC support will come to the Windows 10 Technical Preview “in the new year.” And by support, Aul means “platform level support, not just Windows Media Player”. Any Win32 or modern app will gain the ability to run FLAC files without exterior help.
Short for Free Lossless Audio Codec, FLAC can freely compress audio files to 50-60 percent of their original size. FLAC tracks can be easily converted back and forth with no discernible drop in quality; hence, “lossless.”
While generally larger than MP3s, FLACs deliver superior quality. The difference in sound reproduction is often difficult to perceive but it can be heard with high-quality speakers or headphones. So forget convoluted conversion methods, workarounds and FLAC-enabled plug-ins, all ye self-respecting audiophiles. Windows will soon handle it by default.
MKV video compatibility is also baked into Win 8.1’s follow-up, so even if it’s still early days, the upgrade is looking as radical and exciting as the leap in branding suggested – for multimedia connoisseurs, at least.