Apple Music has been slowly rolling out Apple Digital Masters, an initiative that combines the company’s “Mastered for iTunes” offering into one global catalog with unrivaled quality for Apple Music and the iTunes Store.
Apple Digital Masters aims to provide uncompromising studio sound, virtually indistinguishable from the original master recordings, with less noise and higher fidelity.
By encoding from high-resolution masters, Apple music engineers are able to capture all of the detail of a recording in a size that is convenient for streaming and downloading. Using 24-bit files means less noise and higher encoding efficiency, and Apple has distributed their industry-leading encoder for free to mastering engineers worldwide and by using these software tools engineers are able to create “test pressings” of exactly what the audience will hear. The result is music that is virtually indistinguishable from the original hi-res master recordings.
Apple Digital Masters provide premium quality audio without any additional cost on Apple Music and the iTunes Store. All former Mastered for iTunes songs will continue to be available under the Apple Digital Masters program.