iTunes compression disappointment

I heard this great band on Norwegian television called Metropolitan, a jazz big band including a string section that plays nice lounge jazz. So I bought the album from Apple's iTunes online store. It set me back DKK 80,- (about half the price of a CD), and the iTunes application started downloading it immediately. A bit pricy, but ok. After a couple of minutes it was finished, and I browsed to the download folder and was shocked to see the entire album was just about 50MB! Even though it uses AAC, the lossy compression artifacts are absolutely audiable at that bitrate. It may be good enough for Britney Spears or Bon Jovi - but it sure isn't good enough for Metropolis or classical music. I always rip CDs to lossless compression - so I can later transcode to another lossless format or compress for a portable device without any double-destructive-compression artifacts. Needless to say, I will never use iTunes again.

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