Qualcomm has introduced aptX Lossless, a new standard for wireless headphones that will allow you to obtain lossless sound and CD quality.
Lossless sound has been one of the revelations of 2021 for many users, after streaming services like Apple Music and Amazon Music HD have started offering it. With the highest sound quality , we can enjoy our music like never before, appreciating instruments and details that went unnoticed with compressed music, even if that means a greater consumption of data.
However, many users were disappointed that they did not notice the difference, for one simple reason: they were wearing wireless headphones. Even the best models on the market only support compressed or lossy codecs ; Apple, for example, only supports AAC on all AirPods models, and it falls short of the quality of the ALAC format used in Apple Music.
The ‘bottleneck’ is in the Bluetooth connection, which does not have enough bandwidth to transmit so much data at the same time? or if? Qualcomm now comes with aptX Lossless , a technology it claims will allow lossless music playback over Bluetooth connections. It is part of their aptX Adaptive platform, which is already implemented in some smartphones and headphones; recently, we were able to test the OnePlus Buds Pro , which featured aptX.
Qualcomm claims that with this release it has been able to stream CD-quality lossless sound over Bluetooth; Specifically, it has reached 16 bits and 44.1 kHz, which is not the best possible quality (with a sound card like the SoundBlaster X4 you can reproduce 24 bits and 192 kHz, for example), but which until now had not been achieved with Bluetooth
To achieve this, the new standard works with Qualcomm’s Bluetooth High Speed Link technology to obtain a greater bandwidth, capable of exceeding 1 Mbps but which can also go down to 140 kbs in congested areas but without suffering cuts or failures in the music . Therefore, the quality will not always be the same, and will vary depending on the quality of the connection. The system will be able to automatically detect if the sound is lossless, and will reproduce it as such through the headphones or wireless speakers if the connection quality is good.
The downside is that this technology will have to be implemented in future devices, and Qualcomm hopes to make it available to its customers by the end of the year; therefore, probably until mid to late 2022 we will not see compatible headsets and smartphones. And of course, we will need music in high definition to take advantage of them, whether with Apple Music, Amazon Music, Tidal, or the announced Spotify service.