Up there with FLAC, ALAC, and the nearly extinct SHN audio format, Monkey’s Audio APE files provide you with a set of lossless compression algorithms that allow you to enjoy your favorite music with the same quality of the original uncompressed files but taking much less space on your internal or external drives. Monkey’s Audio can also decompress APE files easily and return them to their original state without losing a bit of their quality.
Using the Rice Coding system, APE files can store high-quality music in a portion of the space taken by the original ADPCM file. Its lossless compression techniques guarantee that you can compress and decompress the files as many times as required without compromising the quality of the source WAV file in any way. Monkey’s Audio is an open-source development, meaning that you can use its SDK to incorporate it to your own products freely under a non-restrictive license.
Monkey’s Audio comes in a simple and intuitive interface where you can compress as many files as required in one single operation. The program offers you a set of compression profiles ranging from “Fast” to “Insane”, which will let you decide how much compression you wish to apply to your APE files. Regardless of the settings used, all resulting APE files are equally lossless, and once decompressed they can be seen as perfect clones of the original WAV files used. The program’s interface can be used either to compress or decompress audio files, and the program’s support for batch compression will let you define a processing priority and the number of simultaneous files to be processed. If so desired, files can be verified for errors using MD5 checksum, and redundant CRCs will be incorporated automatically to the APE files for future flawless decompression. Alternatively, Monkey’s Audio GUI allows you to tag your audio files (using APE’s own tags) and to rename the resulting tracks using information taken from the source files, all while the files are being processed.
APE files will play back seamlessly in Media Center, Foobar, WMP, Winamp, and some others software players. Regrettably, not many hardware players support Monkey’s Audio files.