I can't believe it's not... MP3
Gaining acceptance for compressed (read compromised) music among audiophiles was always going to be a tough task. For those who seek they very best reproduction only full bandwidth audio played back thought a top notch system will do. But what about music lovers? Is sound quality in recording and reproduction the essential ingredient for a pleasurable music experience or is the real prize in finding the very best performance from world class artists? Even the most astoundingly good HiFi system will struggle to make a dodgy high school band or orchestra sound good!
No matter what your chosen genre of music, no matter how good the performance or how good the recording, taking care of it is vital. When ripping music to your iPod there are far better encoding choices than the default 128kbs AAC. Apple lossless and WAV for example are formats which preserve all of the original data in the recording and offer a significant increase in sound quality.
To read what a dedicated group of music enthusiasts think about the "Good music vs. Good Hifi" debate why not take a look at the following thread on the BBC Radio 3 Forum.