Comparison of 6 different Bluetooth audio codecs: SBC, AAC, APTX, LDAC, LHDC, LC3

Bluetooth Audio Codecs: Choosing the Best Sound Quality for Your Application Scenarios

With the rapid development of wireless technology, Bluetooth audio codecs are also continuously improving, providing us with a richer audio experience. From AAC to SBC, from APTX to LDAC and LHDC, each codec has its unique features and advantages. This article will explain these Bluetooth audio codecs in detail and help you choose the best sound quality based on your application scenarios.

SBC: Bluetooth Stereo Transmission Protocol

The main issue with the SBC codec is its low bit rate and high compression rate. During Bluetooth transmission, intermediate devices need to transcode. For example, with an MP3 file, the transcoding process is MP3->PCM->SBC->PCM. Each transcoding step loses details, resulting in SBC sounding worse than the original MP3. These losses during transmission degrade the music listening experience. Additionally, SBC was the first Bluetooth audio codec, and the Bluetooth SIG requires all Bluetooth audio devices to support this format to ensure universality.

AAC: Advanced Audio Coding

AAC, developed in 1997 by Fraunhofer IIS, Dolby Laboratories, AT&T, Sony, and others, is a high-compression codec. AAC delivers good sound quality. Generally, at the same bit rate, AAC sounds better than MP3. Many Apple audio files use AAC, so Apple devices predominantly adopt this format. Most Apple devices support AAC.

APTX: Adaptive Lossless Audio Coding Technology

If you seek high-quality audio transmission and lossless sound, the APTX codec is your top choice. It employs adaptive lossless audio coding technology to maintain lossless sound during Bluetooth transmission. APTX offers high transmission efficiency and low latency, suitable for high-quality audio applications like music listening and voice calls. Whether at work, study, or leisure, APTX provides a clear and smooth audio experience.

  • aptX: Uses lossless compression, entry-level lossless format, offering CD-quality sound.
  • aptX-LL (Low Latency): Latency below 40ms, excellent for gaming and monitoring.
  • aptX-HD (High Definition): Increases sampling frequency to 48KHz/24bit, providing the best sound quality in the aptX family.
  • aptX-AD (Adaptive): Combines the advantages of aptX-HD and aptX-LL, adapting audio quality and latency.

LDAC: High-Resolution Audio Coding Technology

If you desire high-resolution sound quality and lossless transmission, LDAC is your top choice. It uses high-resolution audio coding technology to maintain high-resolution sound during Bluetooth transmission. LDAC offers high transmission efficiency and low latency, suitable for high-quality audio applications like music listening and high-definition audio playback. Whether in concert halls, theaters, or home theaters, LDAC provides a clear and realistic audio experience. This lossless format was introduced by Sony.

LHDC: Low-Latency High-Definition Audio Coding Technology

If you need low-latency audio transmission and high-definition sound quality in gaming, LHDC is your top choice. It uses low-latency high-definition audio coding technology to maintain low latency and high-definition sound during Bluetooth transmission. LHDC offers high transmission efficiency and low latency, suitable for real-time feedback applications like online gaming and virtual reality. Whether in competitive arenas, virtual worlds, or interactive games, LHDC provides precise and vivid audio experiences.

LC3: Low Complexity Communication Codec

Bluetooth LC3 codec is a low-latency audio coding technology typically used in applications like video conferencing and audio calls. It achieves efficient compression while providing better sound quality and maintaining very low latency. Compared to traditional audio coding technologies, the LC3 codec has higher compression efficiency, meaning higher-quality audio can be transmitted at the same data rate. Additionally, LC3 codec has better error tolerance, maintaining good sound quality even in poor network conditions. LC3 codec also supports variable bit rate (VBR) encoding, automatically adjusting the encoding rate according to the complexity of the audio signal for more efficient compression.

Each Bluetooth audio codec has its unique features and advantages, suitable for different application scenarios. Choosing the appropriate codec based on your needs and preferences is crucial.

Feasycom's Bluetooth Audio Modules

Feasycom is at the forefront of Bluetooth audio technology, offering a range of high-performance modules designed to elevate your wireless audio solutions. Whether you're developing cutting-edge in-car entertainment systems, sophisticated audio transmitters, or advanced smart home devices, Feasycom has the perfect module to meet your needs.

  • FCS-BT936B: Ideal for in-car entertainment systems and portable multimedia devices. Featuring Bluetooth 4.2 Dual Mode and robust protocol support, this module ensures seamless connectivity and superior audio quality.
  • FSC-BT1026C: Perfect for automotive central control systems and motorcycle instrument panels. With Bluetooth 5.1 Dual Mode, this module offers advanced protocols and certifications, ensuring top-tier performance and reliability.
  • FSC-BT631D: The go-to choice for LE audio, wireless headphones, and smart home systems. Equipped with Bluetooth 5.3/5.2 and NFC, this module supports I²S audio output and a wide range of interfaces for versatile applications.
  • FSC-BT805B: Designed for high-end products, this module combines Bluetooth 4.2 Dual Mode with high-speed data transmission, making it cost-effective without compromising on quality.

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