Having created by AAC format (.M4A) file of my next Dub Zone podcast (TDZ#12), I’ve been having a very interesting discussion with one of my listeners’s Jan Rigter, regarding who can consume (or even read) the new format. Jan is based in the Netherlands, and he tells me iPod’s don’t have a large market share out there, and many other MP3 players are common.  The question is can they read the new format?  Well, I tried by trusty iRiver H320, and Jan tried his Archos 104 and we both got the same result – we can tranefer the file to the player, but the player cannot even "see" the file, nevermind play it. So much for the "multi codec jukebox" written on the side of my iRiver!

Then there’s the computer you use to download. Obviously Mac users will be fine with AAC format, but on windows (my platform) I have problems with Windows Media Player and Real Player. Both of these handle MP3 files that have been converted to AAC without any chapters, but the "extended" nature of the podcast breaks the codex somehow. Jan has tried this on his platform, "Ubuntu" linux and has managed to get good results from the "totem" playter, but other players, such as "XMMS" gives audio, no pictures and "Rhythmbox" cannot read the file.

I’ve also had a go a trying to play AAc format podcasts (even from other podcasters) via my flash player on the PC Podcast and Dub Zones sites and no joy. The player sees the podcast, just can’t play it.

Ho Hum! So, it looks like this will be an experiment, but just that. I guess I need to upload an MP3 version of TDZ#12 or some listeners will be disappointed!