This format is backwards compatible with the standard mp3 audio file (MPEG-2 Layer-3 audio).
mp3PRO combines the MP3 audio format with spectral band replication compression methods.
Transparency is achieved at lower bitrates compared to MP3s and the resulting file is two times smaller compared to a usual MP3 file.
A major issue with MP3 audio is that opting for a lower bit rate eliminated high frequency components and made the music sound dull. mp3PRO managed to solve the problem of limited bandwidth mp3 files with a minimal amount of distortions.
mp3PRO files can be played by any mp3 player, but the higher frequency data is ignored if you don’t use special software. By installing the THOMSON mp3PRO Decoder Plugin for Winamp to your computer, you will have all it takes to play mp3PRO files correctly and to decode at any bitrate. The ID3v2 tags are supported, too.
The last version of the THOMSON mp3PRO Decoder Plugin was 1.3, and it was improved with several changes, such as general complexity reductions, switching to Nullsoft Install system v2.08 and added SSE optimizations to lower CPU load on PIII and higher. This plugin is not compatible with Winamp 3.0.
This compact plugin is exactly what you need to start enjoying higher sound quality with mp3PRO files using the well-known and convenient Winamp audio player.
The mp3PRO format is superior to the plain mp3 format and it offers higher sound quality over a wide range of bit rates.