I've been ripping my audio cds to vbr mp3s thus far, religiously following Paul's How To, but have been filled with doubts about the viability of .mp3 as a compressed audio format. I've been reading a bit about .aac and .mp4 - do either of these beat .mp3 in striking the perfect balance between size and quality? Or is there another format that beats all three? Please note I am not talking about compatibility or popularity of the format, just the quality.
Lastly, since I'm on about aac/mp4, how about how-to guides for these formats as well?