Filename extension: .mlp
Developed by: Microsoft
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The MLP (Meridian Lossless Packing) filetype is an audio file format associated primarily with DVD-Audio. It was developed to allow for high-resolution audio data compression without loss of sound quality. MLP is known for preserving the exact original sound data and is commonly used in situations where audio fidelity is of utmost importance, such as in professional music production and high-quality audio releases.

History and Development

MLP was introduced by Meridian Audio, Ltd. in the late 1990s, aiming to deliver an uncompromised audio experience by packing extensive amounts of audio data into a manageable size. This was particularly valuable in the days of physical audio formats when storage space on discs was at a premium. MLP played a significant role in the early advancement of surround sound and high-definition audio formats.

How Meridian Lossless Packing Works

At its core, MLP compresses audio data by removing redundancy and irrelevancy, which results in no loss of information. The encoding process involves a technique known as 'lossless compression,' wherein the original audio waveform is perfectly preserved after decompression. Unlike lossy formats like MP3 or AAC, which discard some audio information to reduce file size, MLP maintains the integrity of the original sound.

Software and Playback Compatibility

Software supporting MLP is typically high-end audio production tools or playback software dedicated to audiophiles. Some Blu-ray players and AV receivers also support the playback of MLP files, leveraging their capacity to output high-definition audio. It is essential for users to check compatibility with their playback devices, as the support for MLP is not as widespread as more popular formats.

Alternatives to MLP

As digital storage capacities have dramatically increased, the necessity for the compression provided by MLP has decreased. Formats such as FLAC (Free Lossless Audio Codec) and ALAC (Apple Lossless Audio Codec) have become more prevalent, offering similar audio fidelity with better support and more flexibility. These formats are widely accepted by a range of devices and software, making them suitable alternatives for users seeking lossless audio without the limitations of MLP compatibility.

Supported converters for MLP files

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