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Natural Audio Coding at its best

Software development kits (SDKs) for AAC, HE-AAC and xHE-AAC with up to 7.1 multi-channel audio support

Advanced Audio Coding (AAC) represents the “state of the art” in audio encoding. It features unprecedented device compatibility with virtually all browsers and mobile devices natively supporting playback of AAC material. The latest addition to AAC formats, xHE-AAC, adds new coding algorithms for ultra-low bitrate encoding, supporting DRC (dynamic range control) for loudness matching and a wide range of available channel configurations and sample rates.

The MainConcept AAC Encoder and Decoder SDKs offer fast, high-quality encoding and decoding of AAC LC, HE v1 and HE v2 audio, making it simple to add support for these extraordinary audio formats to existing applications using up to 7.1 discrete channels. The Fraunhofer AAC Audio Encoder adds VOD as well live xHE-AAC encoding for high-quality audio at even lower bit rates, perfectly suited for adaptive bitrate streaming formats.

AAC has been adopted by major standards organizations including the Third Generation Partnership Programme (3GPP), the Digital Radio Mondiale Consortium (DRM), the Internet Streaming Media Alliance (ISMA), the Bluetooth Special Interest Group, the satellite-based XM Radio, the Japanese Association of Radio Industries and Businesses (ARIB), and many others.

XHE-AAC playback is natively supported on Android (since Android Pie) and iOS (since iOS 13) and is actively deployed by streaming services such as Netflix.

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Product Highlights

Supported formats for encoding
  • AAC LC
  • AAC HE
  • AAC-HEv1
  • AAC-HEv2
  • xHE-AAC 
  • ISO/IEC 13818-7 compliant streams
  • ISO/IEC 14496-3 compliant streams up to 7.1 channel

AAC is also available in the MainConcept Audio SDK
Supported formats for decoding
  • AAC LC
  • AAC-HEv1
  • AAC-HEv2 audio 
  • ISO/IEC 13818-7 compliant
  • ISO/IEC 14496-3 compliant streams up to 7.1 surround channel

Standard compliant

The encoder and decoder adhere to the MPEG-2 (ISO/IEC 13818-7) and MPEG-4 (ISO/IEC 14496-3 including Amd.1:2003 – AAC HE v1 and Amd.2:2004 – AAC HE v2) AAC audio streams specification, including support for AAC LC (Low Complexity), AAC HE v1 and AAC HE v2, as well as xHE-AAC (ISO/IEC 23003-3 USAC profile).

Multiple output formats

Support for common output formats like RAW (no header, used for multiplexing into MP4 file format), ADTS (Audio Data Transport Stream header, stand-alone AAC files), and LOAS/LATM (used for multiplexing into MPEG-2 streams).


Up to 8 channels surround sound

Depending on the AAC version, encoding and decoding for different channel layouts range from mono, stereo, 5.1 up to 7.1 for the perfect AAC experience.


AAC Encoder SDK
Generate streams with AAC LC, AAC HE, AAC H Ev1 and AAC HE v2 audio.
Encoder Addons
XHE-AAC Encoding for Fraunhofer AAC Encoder Add-on feature enabling live and multi-pass encoding for DRC measurement and USAC (xHE-AAC) audio.
AAC Decoder SDK
Playback streams with AAC LC, AAC HE, AAC HE v1 and AAC HE v2 audio.