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Bluetooth audio codecs aptX and LDAC are two popular choices that offer premium sound quality with low latency.

Qualcomm-owned aptX is widely used for voice-calling audio, gaming devices, and high-quality Bluetooth headphones. LDAC, developed by Sony in 2015, offers higher resolution audio over Bluetooth connections using Enhanced Data Rate (EDR) technology to boost data speeds and offers three different connection modes with varying bitrates. Both require compatible transmitters and receivers, but LDAC is better suited for higher-quality services like Amazon Music or Deezer.

Let’s break down these two codecs and see which one might be better for you.

aptX vs. LDAC: Side-by-Side Comparison

Codec TechnologyOwned by QualcommDeveloped by Sony
Audio QualityCD-like qualityHigh-resolution audio up to 32-bit/96kHz
Bluetooth SpeedLow latency, drains less batteryOptimized packetization, more efficient coding
Data TransmissionSupports A2DPEnhanced Data Rate technology
CompatibilityAndroid devices, high-quality Bluetooth headphonesSony products, soundbars, and speakers, higher-quality services
Popular Use CasesVoice-calling and gaming audioBluetooth headphones for good-quality audio

aptX vs. LDAC: What’s the Difference?

aptX and LDAC are two high-quality audio codecs that share many similarities. However, they offer distinct differences that could influence your decision when choosing between them. Let’s break them down below.

Compression and Sound Quality

When comparing aptX and LDAC, one major distinction lies in how they handle audio compression and sound quality. aptX was designed for high-definition voice quality via Bluetooth wireless technology. Its codec supports A2DP (and other codecs that support it), offering instructions to encode and decode Bluetooth transmissions without compromising sound quality. As a result, aptX delivers CD-like sound quality with uninterrupted listening experience — perfect for gaming audio. Similarly, aptX uses less battery power while processing audio than other codecs, making it ideal for gaming audio production.

LDAC provides high-resolution audio over Bluetooth connections with 32-bit/96kHz resolution audio at up to 990 kbps. Utilizing Enhanced Data Rate (EDR) helps increase data speeds beyond A2DP profile limits. LDAC also uses three times more data streaming over Bluetooth due to optimized packetization and efficient coding, offering a maximum data rate of 328 kbps. LDAC’s superior data transmission makes it compatible with higher-quality services like Amazon Music, Deezer, Tidal, and Qobuz.


Another distinction between aptX and LDAC is their compatibility with various devices. While aptX is often used to improve voice quality during calls, it’s mostly used for audio-calling audio and gaming consoles. aptX requires a compatible transmitter and receiver, and most high-quality Bluetooth headphones support it.

The LDAC codec is supported by soundbars and speakers alike. To get the full benefit of LDAC, both source, and receiver must be compatible. The Sony products it supports include the WF-1000XM4, WH-1000XM5, WH-1000XM3, and WH-1000XM4. Furthermore, users can manually toggle LDAC options on mobile phones or headphone apps for enhanced audio quality.

Connection Modes

LDAC and aptX differ in their connection modes. LDAC offers three distinct connections — quality, normal, and connection — each offering different bitrates of 990 kbps, 660 kbps, and 330 kbps, respectively. Toggling these options on mobile phones or headphone apps is simple: toggle your phone or headphone app accordingly.

aptX does not feature connection modes; it’s designed to improve voice quality during calls and gaming audio. The codec technology compresses and decompresses audio from mobile phones to Bluetooth headphones without sacrificing sound quality. aptX delivers CD-like sound quality for an uninterrupted experience. Additionally, aptX consumes less battery power while processing audio than other codecs, making it perfect for audio gaming production.

Spotify vs Amazon Music Unlimited
Bluetooth audio codecs can be super handy to improve your audio experience with low latency.

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Latency is an important factor when it comes to audio transmission, particularly for gaming or watching videos. The aptX codec has a lower latency than LDAC at around 30-40ms, while LDAC’s latency hovers around 50-150ms.

This difference in latency can cause noticeable delays when using LDAC to watch videos or playing games that require quick responses. On the other hand, LDAC’s higher bit rate and superior data transmission also make it ideal for high-quality music streaming.


LDAC is more complex than aptX in terms of complexity. It uses an advanced algorithm that requires more processing power to encode and decode audio data, leading to improved sound quality but at the cost of additional resources from both transmitter and receiver devices. As a result, LDAC requires more resources both in terms of processing power and battery life compared to aptX.

Conversely, aptX employs a simpler algorithm that requires less processing power and battery life. This makes aptX compatible with more devices, including older smartphones and other Bluetooth-enabled gadgets. Additionally, aptX can be utilized by less powerful gadgets like low-end smartphones and headphones.


Another important distinction between aptX and LDAC is the bitrate of audio streams they support. Bitrate refers to how much data is transmitted per second in digital audio streams. Higher bitrates typically provide superior sound quality but require more bandwidth and processing power for processing.

aptX and LDAC both boast lower bitrates. aptX’s maximum bitrate is 576 kbps, while LDAC’s is 990 kbps. This indicates that, while LDAC can deliver higher quality audio streams than aptX, it also requires more bandwidth and processing power to achieve those high bitrates.

However, it’s essential to remember that the actual bitrate achieved will depend on both the device and Bluetooth connection quality. Lower-quality connections may not be able to achieve the maximum bitrate for either codec, while the distance between devices, obstructions present, and other factors all affect bitrate variation.


aptX is more efficient than LDAC. aptX uses an efficient compression algorithm that reduces audio stream size without sacrificing quality, so aptX requires less bandwidth and processing power to transmit the same audio stream as LDAC does. In addition, due to its reduced bandwidth requirements, aptX is less susceptible to interference from other wireless signals.

LDAC, on the other hand, relies on a less efficient compression algorithm that requires more bandwidth and processing power to transmit an identical audio stream as aptX does. Due to this increased demand on resources, LDAC may be more susceptible to interference from other wireless signals, particularly in congested wireless environments.

AptX vs. LDAC: 7 Must-Know Facts

  • aptX provides low latency with enhanced audio quality without sacrificing sound quality.
  • Qualcomm developed the aptX audio codec, which compresses and decompresses audio without sacrificing quality when transmitting from mobile phones to headphones via Bluetooth.
  • aptX is renowned for providing an uncompromised CD-like audio experience.
  • LDAC boasts superior data transmission compared to other codecs due to its optimized packetization of data and more efficient coding, enabling it to stream three times more data over Bluetooth compared with other codecs.
  • Sony pioneered LDAC in 2015, an audio coding technology that provides high-resolution sound over Bluetooth connections.
  • LDAC utilizes Enhanced Data Rate (EDR) technology to deliver 32-bit/96kHz audio over Bluetooth at up to 990 kbps.
  • LDAC offers three distinct connection modes — quality, normal, and connection — each with its own bitrate that can be manually toggled on mobile phones.

AptX vs. LDAC: Which One is Better?

When comparing aptX and LDAC audio codecs, both technologies offer their advantages and disadvantages. aptX codec technology offers low-latency CD-like sound and consumes less battery while processing audio data. On the other hand, LDAC codec technology offers higher-resolution audio over Bluetooth connections while offering better data transmission than other codecs.

The aptX codec technology is commonly used for voice-calling audio and gaming devices. In contrast, LDAC codec technology works better with higher-quality services like Amazon Music, Deezer, Tidal, and Qobuz. Both codecs require compatible transmitters and receivers in order to operate properly.

When choosing between aptX and LDAC, personal preference and the intended use of audio should be taken into consideration. For those who prioritize high-resolution sound quality, LDAC may be preferable; on the other hand, those who prioritize low latency and efficient battery usage might find aptX more advantageous.

It is essential to be aware that other audio codecs exist on the market, and consumers should carefully weigh all their options before making a final decision. Nonetheless, both aptX and LDAC offer superior sound quality over Bluetooth connections and are widely used by many Android devices and high-quality Bluetooth headphones.

Overall, the battle between aptX and LDAC is a close one; eventually, it boils down to personal preference and intended use.

aptX vs. LDAC: What’s the Difference? FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

Which is better, aptX or LDAC?

Ultimately, the best choice will depend on your preferences and what devices are available to you. If low latency and sound quality comparable to CD quality are important, then aptX may be your ideal option. However, if you’re after higher quality sound transmission with compatible devices, LDAC could be the better choice.

What is the maximum data rate of LDAC?

LDAC can deliver a maximum data rate of 990 kbps, higher than the majority of other codecs due to efficient coding and optimized packetization.

How does aptX technology work?

aptX offers instructions for encoding and decoding Bluetooth transmissions, helping compress audio from mobile devices to Bluetooth headphones without sacrificing quality. While this requires less battery power for processing audio, a compatible transmitter and receiver are necessary for optimal performance.

What technology does LDAC utilize?

LDAC utilizes Enhanced Data Rate (EDR) technology to accelerate data speeds beyond what A2DP profiles typically support. This enables higher-resolution audio over Bluetooth connections.

What are the different connection modes available with LDAC?

LDAC provides three connection types: quality, normal, and connection. These modes have bitrates ranging from 990 kbps to 660 kbps and 330 kbps, which can be manually selected on mobile phones or headphone apps.

Can LDAC be utilized with soundbars and speakers?

Absolutely, the LDAC codec is compatible with both soundbars and speakers.

Does aptX affect sound quality?

No, aptX does not reduce sound quality in any way. In fact, this codec is known for providing CD-like fidelity that provides an uninterrupted and uncompromised audio experience.

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