General Question

TheKitchenSink's avatar

What is the "best" lossless compression format for compression+archive formats?

Asked by TheKitchenSink (439points) February 22nd, 2008

I know there are many different compression+archive formats (zip, rar, 7z, etc.) but based on the maximum file compression, which format is the best? I’m sure there are better formats than 7z for compression. It doesn’t have to be common, I just want to know what is the best available, and I can’t seem to find it on the web…
The best I’ve gotten is from (Google translated from French).
However, an example of a list of file formats taken from IZArc’s homepage is “7-ZIP, A, ACE, ARC, ARJ, B64, BH, BIN, BZ2, BZA, C2D, CAB, CDI, CPIO, DEB, ENC, GCA, GZ, GZA, HA, IMG, ISO, JAR, LHA, LIB, LZH, MDF, MBF, MIM, NRG, PAK, PDI, PK3, RAR, RPM, TAR, TAZ, TBZ, TGZ, TZ, UUE, WAR, XXE, YZ1, Z, ZIP, ZOO.”
Clearly there is more to be covered…

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5 Answers

paulc's avatar

That’s a tough question to answer. Different compression schemes are better at compressing different kinds of data. I generally use BZ2 and I’ve been seeing it steadily increase in usage. BZ2 does produce quite small files but can be slower than other schemes. Decompressing BZ2 seems pretty quick though. Of course, as you have listed, there’s many formats (though I wouldn’t consider B64 or UUE to be compression) so you could always do some benchmarking yourself to answer the question precisely.

TheKitchenSink's avatar

Yeah, actually in the meantime I found a really great site:

It basically answers everything and then some.

smart1979's avatar

Check out FLAC. It’s a pretty awesome lossless compression format for audio.

skritty's avatar

For iPhone or psp movies. 1st rip DVD with dvdfabprogram. 2nd reduce to vcd using interdvdvideo program. 3rd using platovision program reduce to mp4 and import into iTunes library or drag to video folder on psp. Movies converted at 256kb will be around 200 to 300 mb in size and look good. That’s a full length movie that’s originally 5 to 7 gigs !

TheKitchenSink's avatar

That’s not a compression+archive format, skritty.

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