Maintaining a Digital Music Collection

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There's been some talk about digital music collections in the past on threads like The Data Migration Thread , but I wanted to start a new thread! dedicated solely to those of us who are actively building up (legally acquired) digital music collections. I'm not talking about buying a CD or LP and then digitizing it, but buying music natively in mp3, FLAC, or some other format. The majority of posters on ILM seem to prefer their music on LPs and CDs, and I definitely see the appeal in doing that--up until very recently, I had to have everything in CD-- but I think there might be a few others who, like me, are starting to purchase most of their music digitally.

Recently, I've decided to go (mostly) digital. The first step in this process has been culling my CD collection. I sold off a chunk of the collection in two batches, and I'm getting ready to sell off a third. My goal is to eventually have as few physical CDs as possible, and I want all of my digital music to sit on two hard drives. Most of the new music I buy is from Amazon mp3, although I'm currently searching for some good online stores that sell everything in FLAC.

I'm doing this for several reasons:

(1) I'm 22, so I'm of the generation that sees CDs as nothing more than a storage medium. I buy a CD, rip it into iTunes, and place it on my CD shelves, where it sits forever.
(2) I have a lot of books, and I'm not a fan of eBook readers, so I plan on acquiring many more books than I already own, and I don't want to maintain two physical media collections.
(3) I need less shit in my life in general.
(4) There's a lot of stuff that's difficult for me to easily acquire where I live, and I've been able to find some stuff that I've had a lot of difficulty tracking down in brick-and-mortar stores on Amazon mp3 and iTunes.
(5) A lot of artists are starting to do the whole LP + mp3/FLAC thing, and I have no desire to start collecting LPs. I think that soon enough more and more artists will start going this route as CDs sales continue to tank.

Is anyone else actively maintaining a digital record collection or planning on doing so? Where are you buying from? How are you storing and organizing everything?

As I said, I'm sure that the audience for this thread on this board is relatively small, but I'm hoping there might be at least a few others out there who are going this route, and perhaps we can get a discussion going.

Reading his posts is like watching The Ring (kshighway), Saturday, 22 August 2009 23:19 (eleven years ago) link

i can't even fathom doing what you're doing. seems no stretch of my imagination no matter how great will alow me to even consider the possibility paying for an mp3. sorry!

samosa gibreel, Saturday, 22 August 2009 23:26 (eleven years ago) link

Keep all your favorite/best CDs, or yer gonna feel like a chump when that hard drive explodes

Whiney G. Weingarten, Saturday, 22 August 2009 23:39 (eleven years ago) link

Much more convenient for housebreakers too, like being able to carry away a whole collection in a binder.

I am using your worlds, Saturday, 22 August 2009 23:41 (eleven years ago) link

I'm more interested in how people are organizing large digital collections. Do you just chuck it all in one folder or do you take the time to set things up in an artist/album way? Do you keep multiple CDs as multiple folders or just combine it all? Do you get rid of duplicates or is that too much work? Etc.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Sunday, 23 August 2009 00:03 (eleven years ago) link

I trust that when you say "two hard drives" you mean one to back up the other. Wouldn't be the dumbest thing to, from time to time, dump everything to a third that you send offsite--back to your parents' house, for example. I'd also make sure you were getting everything at the highest quality possible. What seems good now, won't. And storage will someday be irrelevant.

I just use iTunes, so that takes care of the folders and files. Two external drives (one good quality for constant use, the other, cheaper, to backup the first once a week). I do try to eliminate duplicates, but that can be a lot of work. And also to maintain consistency of names and genres. There are certainly times I feel more like a database manager than a music listener.

But I still can't see getting rid of the originals. Risky. Maybe putting them in deeper storage?

Michael Train, Sunday, 23 August 2009 00:20 (eleven years ago) link

I'm more interested in how people are organizing large digital collections.

I don't have an enormous digital collection, only about 4000 songs. I organize it in a pretty standard way, I think. A folder for each artist, and then within that, folders for each album, using the format of:

year - album name

Adding the year onto the front can be a hassle if you didn't do it from the start, but once everything uses that format it's convenient because it arranges everything chronologically under each artist.

I also make sure that I have album art for each album, which has come in handy recently with my new iPhone acquisition, since you can flip through your collection by scrolling through album covers.

ZS69 (Z S), Sunday, 23 August 2009 00:34 (eleven years ago) link

My concern with acquiring material digitally is bad rips - I'm paranoid about downloading something from Amazon and hearing digital noise. I've heard reports of this a number of times; I'd rather make my own rips and have the quality under my own control.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Sunday, 23 August 2009 01:07 (eleven years ago) link

Z S, do you still buy many physical releases?

Reading his posts is like watching The Ring (kshighway), Sunday, 23 August 2009 01:20 (eleven years ago) link

I'm more interested in how people are organizing large digital collections. Do you just chuck it all in one folder or do you take the time to set things up in an artist/album way? Do you keep multiple CDs as multiple folders or just combine it all? Do you get rid of duplicates or is that too much work? Etc.

― Gerald McBoing-Boing, Saturday, August 22, 2009 7:03 PM (1 hour ago) Bookmark

For right now my shit's all over the place, but I'm starting to work out in my head how I'm going to manage this . . .

I'm considering starting off by organizing by the SOURCE of the mp3. So, if I download something from Amazon, it will go into an Amazon/[artist name] folder. Then I'll copy everything into iTunes and have it copy everything into its own directory structure and sort everything for me.

Reading his posts is like watching The Ring (kshighway), Sunday, 23 August 2009 01:22 (eleven years ago) link

Keep all your favorite/best CDs, or yer gonna feel like a chump when that hard drive explodes

― Whiney G. Weingarten, Saturday, August 22, 2009 6:39 PM (1 hour ago) Bookmark

^ This is the plan, Whiney.

Honestly, though, I usually listen to records I love 30-40 times and then I can barely, if ever, listen to them again. Wilco's a ghost is born is my favorite record of the decade, and I've barely listened to it since 2005. By then, my brain's had enough of the record for a lifetime.

Reading his posts is like watching The Ring (kshighway), Sunday, 23 August 2009 01:23 (eleven years ago) link

I buy records with pretty much all of my spare money, which isn't much, admittedly. I download everything else.

ZS69 (Z S), Sunday, 23 August 2009 01:43 (eleven years ago) link

I have about 45 DVDs on a spindle, each of which holds about 4.5 GB of MP3s (AACs, actually). I have a desktop iMac with a 250GB hard drive which has about 50GB or so of music on it, and I'm planning to burn all that to DVD pretty soon. I've also got a laptop (on which I'm typing this post) with a similar-sized hard drive, and that one's got about 25GB of music on it at present (because that's the one I import all my promo CDs to, and download digital promos to). I'm gonna burn that stuff to DVD soon as well. How many individual albums does all this add up to? Several thousand, easy.

unperson, Sunday, 23 August 2009 02:08 (eleven years ago) link

my brain's had enough of the record for a lifetime.

Yeah, I feel the same about that Wilco album. Mind you, I've never heard it.

Dom J. Palladino (Noodle Vague), Sunday, 23 August 2009 02:11 (eleven years ago) link

stop ripping. bind your cds its totally hot

Man Is Nairf! (J0hn D.), Sunday, 23 August 2009 02:22 (eleven years ago) link

unperson: Do you still buy/collect any physical albums or are you mostly digital?

kshighway, Sunday, 23 August 2009 02:24 (eleven years ago) link

Album art is always nice to have, in any form. To me, just collecting mp3s seems really sterile and doesn't have any connection to the process of collecting music. A lot of my best memories of music are of buying it at my favorite local store, or studying the lyrics. My thought process when I think about an album immediately begins with the album cover.

I guess there's nothing wrong with collecting music the way you are, and god knows, just about everyone your age was raised under the same circumstances. I personally never want to stop "collecting" music outside of the mp3 format, although I do realize there will come a day (in the not too distant future) that cars won't even come with CD players.

slagterm, Sunday, 23 August 2009 02:27 (eleven years ago) link

and all your meals will come in tablet form.

Someone left the cape out in the rain (Noodle Vague), Sunday, 23 August 2009 02:28 (eleven years ago) link

Do you still buy/collect any physical albums or are you mostly digital?

I don't keep many individual album CDs around anymore - one tower's worth, which is about 400 or so, plus another couple of hundred slimcase promos and things in weirdly shaped digipaks which I keep in a cabinet. Mostly what I keep is boxed sets, especially archival ones like the Anthony Braxton Mosaic box from last year, or the Miles Davis Complete Plugged Nickel Sessions set.

unperson, Sunday, 23 August 2009 02:32 (eleven years ago) link

stop ripping. bind your cds its totally hot

Yes, great idea. This works best if you put similar genres adjacent to each other (e.g., all your M0unt41n G04ts CDs next to your Bright Eyes, Dashboard Confessional and Taking Back Sunday). That way once J0hn D. gets you feeling all emo and sad, it's only a single binder page-flip to your Chris Carrabba stuff! Woo!

I just wish he hadn't adopted the "ilxor" moniker (ilxor), Sunday, 23 August 2009 03:04 (eleven years ago) link

god the saddoes eager to show they've heard of me are out in force tonite eh

Man Is Nairf! (J0hn D.), Sunday, 23 August 2009 03:09 (eleven years ago) link

lool

you! me! posting! (electricsound), Sunday, 23 August 2009 03:10 (eleven years ago) link

:'(

I just wish he hadn't adopted the "ilxor" moniker (ilxor), Sunday, 23 August 2009 03:42 (eleven years ago) link

eager to show they've heard of me

Seriously though -- considering I've been on ILM three years, that was hardly the point.

I just wish he hadn't adopted the "ilxor" moniker (ilxor), Sunday, 23 August 2009 03:46 (eleven years ago) link

dude it's all love I was just rezingin please unsad that face

Man Is Nairf! (J0hn D.), Sunday, 23 August 2009 03:59 (eleven years ago) link

How good a sound quality/how great a breadth would an on-demand music service have to be in order to consider doing away with having a digital collection at all?

Philip Nunez, Sunday, 23 August 2009 04:28 (eleven years ago) link

I can't really hear the difference between a well encoded mp3 and a FLAC, even though I've had the opportunity to use some pretty heavy audiophile equipment in the past...tin ears, I guess. so as long as it's 200+ kbps I'm fine, which both Amazon and iTunes do now.

what are you gonna do when iTunes moves to this rumored 'Cocktail' format?

my biggest problem with a digital collection is all the metadata. do you add the lyrics? when do you feel the need to add a composer? what if you can't find a decent scan of the album art bigger than 150x150 pixels? etc.

tony dayo (dyao), Sunday, 23 August 2009 06:25 (eleven years ago) link

We've got about 80gb of music on this iMac, which runs three iPods - an 80gb classic that sits on the Zeppelin, my 1gb shuffle, and Em's iPhone. It's not backed up anywhere at the moment, because we've only just migrated to this machine in the last week. We've got an external HD that'll take it all. The vast majority of it is backed up next door on a couple of thousand CDs though, and most of our listening is probably still off CDs. I've bought a few dozen songs from iTunes, mainly b-sides, odd old singles, and things that I'd not want a whole album or compilation of. I guess those are the only ones that really NEED backing up. Everything's just organised via iTunes; I'm pretty anal about covers & tags & things. I don't think we'd ever go totally digital; just yesterday I bought The XX album on CD. I love CDs too much. But then I'm 30.

Sickamous (Scik Mouthy), Sunday, 23 August 2009 07:38 (eleven years ago) link

for all you guys backing up to CD/DVD, be careful: Up To 10% of CD-Rs Fail Within a Few Years

tony dayo (dyao), Sunday, 23 August 2009 07:53 (eleven years ago) link

I've got pretty much my entire music collection in digital form on a 500gb hard drive (with another one as backup) for iPod purposes - however I only really buy singles digitally rather than whole albums. This is partly because I like the physical object and partly 'cos the CDs I do still buy are mostly very cheap secondhand/bargain bin ones so it's cheaper just to rip from the disc. That said, I've got rid of/have boxed up to get rid of 350+ CDs this year, basically things I've gone off. I moved earlier this year and I've got slightly less room in the new house which certainly spurred me on and I'll be honest, it feels really good paring things down (I still have loads left though!).
The main reason for me buying CDs over vinyl was portability - I've always done a large portion of my listening on the move and I had a CD walkman up until a few years back. However I've started replacing some CDs with vinyl for home listening and I intend to buy more nof my new music in vinyl form (really grateful to those labels who include a download coupon with the record). I could never see myself only having a digital collection and nothing else - I'm sure I'll hang on to lots of my remaining CDs for as long as they can be played.

Gavin in Leeds, Sunday, 23 August 2009 09:27 (eleven years ago) link

(really grateful to those labels who include a download coupon with the record)

Seconding this.

I think I'm at 8 or 9TB of digital files now split evenly between audio and video and I'm probably going to go to some sort of desktop RAID 5 set up once the next generation of 2+TB drives become common. I'm more concerned with having a decent file system that can handle all that and a metafile indexer/cataloger that won't collapse when I hit it with that size of data.

Elvis Telecom, Sunday, 23 August 2009 22:56 (eleven years ago) link

Even if i was goin digital, I think I would throw all my CDs in storage or somethin

Whiney G. Weingarten, Sunday, 23 August 2009 22:59 (eleven years ago) link

I mean, amassing a bunch of files isn't really "collecting" anything anymore is it? It;s like saying you collect pokemon

Whiney G. Weingarten, Sunday, 23 August 2009 23:00 (eleven years ago) link

For those who are on PC, Mediamonkey is the only place to go.

J4mi3 H4rl3y (Snowballing), Sunday, 23 August 2009 23:02 (eleven years ago) link

"I mean, amassing a bunch of files isn't really "collecting" anything anymore is it? It;s like saying you collect pokemon"

If you have a file that isn't readily replaceable/accessible (like say something dubbed off a rare public access TV performance that only you have a VHS copy of), then it takes on more of the properties of something tangible/loseable like pokemon cards, but my thinking is that music services will increasingly make obsolete any need to keep a file or file backup at all.

For example, netflix users wouldn't bother to "collect" movies they've seen on netflix, at least not with any great frequency. (though there's supposedly some pirate group that prides itself on having backed up the entire netflix catalog)

Philip Nunez, Sunday, 23 August 2009 23:27 (eleven years ago) link

i don't really consider my digital music a "collection" per se, it's just me tunes

i could (and will) quite happily be all-digital in the future. i'll probably hang on to most of my cds, boxed up and stored away, more than anything else because it's not worth the time or effort trying to sell them.

you! me! posting! (electricsound), Sunday, 23 August 2009 23:29 (eleven years ago) link

my digital vs hard copy purchase ratio is about 9 to 1 at the moment. i think i've bought less than 50 cds this year.

you! me! posting! (electricsound), Sunday, 23 August 2009 23:30 (eleven years ago) link

well but this is what begs the really interesting generational divide question. what is your collection? a series of hard-evidence signifiers about experiences you've had & can have again at will, tangible evidence of those experiences - or is your real collection the experiences themselves, and the physical collection something of an old-fashioned proof that will no longer be necessary in the future/present? nb I am from the previous gen so for me I gotta have some physical token to feel like I "own" something. but I don't think that's the only way to conceive of "ownership," and I suspect that different conceptions - no less valid - will replace/have replaced "our" conception. it's like: I don't save ticket stubs or collect/trade shows, but I do have a collection of live music experiences - that collection is the experiences themselves. digital collections are considerably more tangible than those, right?

Man Is Nairf! (J0hn D.), Sunday, 23 August 2009 23:31 (eleven years ago) link

xpost w/philip btw

Man Is Nairf! (J0hn D.), Sunday, 23 August 2009 23:31 (eleven years ago) link

"Honestly, though, I usually listen to records I love 30-40 times and then I can barely, if ever, listen to them again."

I cannot for the life of me fathom feeling this way about "records I love".

Alex in SF, Sunday, 23 August 2009 23:48 (eleven years ago) link

At age 45, my big paradigm shift was when the artwork and liner notes shrank from 12" to 5", so I find myself strangely blasé (perfectly happy, actually) about the shift from 5" disc to digital file.

Hugh Manatee (WmC), Sunday, 23 August 2009 23:53 (eleven years ago) link

Pardon my grammar. I'm 45, not my paradigm shift.

Hugh Manatee (WmC), Sunday, 23 August 2009 23:54 (eleven years ago) link

w/r/t generational divide, I don't believe the next generation will be so alien as to maintain a digital collection against an endless buffet that makes that collection obsolete when making personal top-ten lists does all the signifying one needs (and is an activity well-enjoyed cross-generationally)

so maybe this kind of digital album collecting as if they were physical albums will be a weird hiccup peculiar to just this moment in time.

Philip Nunez, Sunday, 23 August 2009 23:56 (eleven years ago) link

i can appreciate good artwork as much as the next dude but i've pretty much always listened to music the same way - compiled the best songs into whatever format i was working with at the time (tape, cdr, playlist) and listen to that, completely separate from the original artifacts. so artwork is really something i only ever looked at if i wanted to know who the producer was or something. frankly some records i appreciate more for not having the shitty artwork.

internetkonnektivität (electricsound), Sunday, 23 August 2009 23:56 (eleven years ago) link

i have a car and that is mostly why i buy cds

winston, Monday, 24 August 2009 04:21 (eleven years ago) link

Honestly, though, I usually listen to records I love 30-40 times and then I can barely, if ever, listen to them again. Wilco's a ghost is born is my favorite record of the decade, and I've barely listened to it since 2005. By then, my brain's had enough of the record for a lifetime.

How old are you? I found that after about 10 years, I bought a lot of albums I previously weeded out by favorite groups. Now that I'm digitizing my collection, it's not as big a deal. I'm still keeping 60% of my CDs. I'm ripping in FLAC with dbpoweramp, correct some tagging and make playlists with Mediamonkey, and listen in three rooms with Squeezebox. I will be able to fit everything on my 6TB NAS server with room to spare, and have everything backed up twice, one on extra drives at home, another at work. It's nice to be able to have access to everything at work.

I think it's crucial to use lossless files. You can easily convert them to another format with a batch converter without losing anything. Buying CDs is still the cheapest option, because you can get deals on them new and used for under $10 each. $1 to $2 a song for FLAC is just not an option. The CDs you don't want to keep, you can sell, and end up spending only $2 to $5 on the music.

I'm listening to more of my music more often now that I can play it simultaneously in multiple rooms. Living with someone else the past couple years, I had stopped listening later at night because she goes to sleep earlier. Now I can put on some closed headphones and have access to the whole collection from bed on the Duet remote.

Fastnbulbous, Monday, 24 August 2009 13:38 (eleven years ago) link

i mean, one of the biggest obstacles for me re: digital is that iTunes keeps changing how it organizes things.

Like for a while it was just artist/song/album and then with a recent update you can put files in one pile while labeling it another with "sort by." Also my iphone used to recognize "sort by" so I'd sort all my compilations by "#" so the errant comp tracks just show up at the end. The new iPhone update no longer recognizes "sort by" and my iphone tracks are now a shitty jumble again.

Who knows what iTunes will change to? Or even if we'll be using itunes in 10 years?

patti lmaonnaise (Whiney G. Weingarten), Monday, 24 August 2009 13:44 (eleven years ago) link

where we're going, we don't need iTunes

tony dayo (dyao), Monday, 24 August 2009 13:45 (eleven years ago) link

iTunes is just a ID3 tag editor isn't it (at least for mp3 files) and it's such an 800 pound gorilla that I'm sure whatever player we'll be using in the future, Mp3-O-Matic 5000 or whatever, will definitely be "iTunes compatible"

the Album Artist field is such a life saver w/r/t rap albums...and Sort By is great for those who catalog by last name, among others

tony dayo (dyao), Monday, 24 August 2009 13:46 (eleven years ago) link

but completely useless for people that use iphones

patti lmaonnaise (Whiney G. Weingarten), Monday, 24 August 2009 13:49 (eleven years ago) link

i would have thought that any kind of transcoding is bad news? i converted all my FLAC to 512 AAC for ipod and kept whatever 320 mp3 i had left around...

maelin, Tuesday, 4 May 2021 20:56 (two months ago) link

why would a flac be any more convenient to work with than an mp3?

joni mitchell jarre (anagram), Tuesday, 4 May 2021 21:01 (two months ago) link

it's bad news when it's between lossy codecs and even then most of the time it will be audibly harmlesss, just very bad practice

lossy to losseless works as koogs says, i personally wouldn't do it but they're aware of the consequences and have a reason for it

chihuahuau, Tuesday, 4 May 2021 21:09 (two months ago) link

My Squeezeboxes are getting long in the tooth so I'm going to experimentally build a Raspberry Pi-based knockoff... just retired my Windows 10 Media Server I was serving music from and swapped it out for a Raspberry Pi 4 with and SSD drive attached, uses like one-fifth the power and is unobtrusively stuck to the wall behind my computer monitor instead of taking up valuable shelf space!

mark e. smith-moon (f. hazel), Tuesday, 4 May 2021 22:13 (two months ago) link

> why would a flac be any more convenient to work with than an mp3?

it's more that two master file formats are worse than one. i have a bunch of scripts to bulk tag, and keep things in sync and transcode the masters down to a format suitable for walking around with (oggs for the clip zip) and having to switch tagging / transcoding program based on source file type is a pain.

(oggenc actually knows about flac format and will accept it as input and copy across all the tags, very handy. with mp3s you'd have to use an intermediate wav file and handle the tags separately. or learn ffmpeg but life's too short)

koogs, Tuesday, 4 May 2021 23:03 (two months ago) link

the mp3 masters that i have are probably a dozen Amazon purchases from before bandcamp / boomkat was a thing. add the odd compilation that people have done me. and some more recent things where buying the flacs didn't make sense for one reason or another (19 or whatever autechre live sets...). i doubt it's 5% of the total. but even 5% is hundreds.

koogs, Tuesday, 4 May 2021 23:08 (two months ago) link

my experience has been that (ffmpeg + Google use case + batch) is usually significantly less hassle than converting everything, or manual workarounds

assert (MatthewK), Tuesday, 4 May 2021 23:09 (two months ago) link

i have a bunch of scripts to bulk tag

fwiw i have wine installed almost exclusively for using foobar2000, that takes care of all audio related tasks except, weirdly, playback because for a few months now i don't get any sound output. multi-threaded mass conversion, tagging and replaygain scanning of all formats is a breeze though

chihuahuau, Wednesday, 5 May 2021 11:41 (two months ago) link

is there a database of "canonical" flac or raw checksums people generally use to make sure their rips are the best?

Philip Nunez, Wednesday, 5 May 2021 21:30 (two months ago) link

yes, there are 2 even, one of them offering limited error correction capability in addition to detection:
https://wiki.hydrogenaud.io/index.php?title=AccurateRip
http://cue.tools/wiki/CUETools_Database

strictly speaking, they're not databases of flac checksums, they're use specially made CRC algorithms that allow different CD pressings that are time-shifted during manufacturing but are effectively the exact same master to validate against each other

chihuahuau, Wednesday, 5 May 2021 23:11 (two months ago) link

there was, until quite recently, an eac/xld logchecker available at h++p://eachelper.atwebpages.com/Analyzehtml.php

anyone know if it exists anywhere else publicly? (i know there are similar things on private trackers)

mookieproof, Wednesday, 5 May 2021 23:43 (two months ago) link

logcheckers are mostly snake oil, they're used to set a ripping standard in private trackers but they're way too strict about pointless things like secure mode

checking a rip for errors, in descending order of confidence:

1. a single match in accuraterip or CTDB verification if you're certain that match isn't against an older rip of the same physical disc

2. matching CRCs in 2 rips of the same disc with 2 different drives (with different chipsets, not rebrands)

3. matching CRCs in test & copy burst passes with a single drive

4. secure mode rip with no "uncorrected" errors

1 >>> 2 > 3 >> 4

chihuahuau, Thursday, 6 May 2021 08:51 (two months ago) link

This thread often makes me wish I would have done a better job of ripping my CDs before hauling them all to Amoeba.

beard papa, Thursday, 6 May 2021 16:25 (two months ago) link

This thread often makes me think vinyl isn't that much of a pain in the arse after all.

Vanishing Point (Chinaski), Thursday, 6 May 2021 16:53 (two months ago) link

lol srsly

I will also say that I recently A/B'd Eno's "The True Wheel" on remastered CD and original UK vinyl with my new amp and subwoofer, the vinyl won

I have never once worried about EAC or anything of the sort when I rip

"Gaspar? No way." (sleeve), Thursday, 6 May 2021 17:03 (two months ago) link

xp there's no way digitising a vinyl record can be made any easier than ripping a cd. i wouldn't bother at all, that's for sure, that's what filesharing is for

I have never once worried about EAC or anything of the sort when I rip

don't worry, it means you've wasted less time to get the same results 99% of the time, maybe less if you have scratched discs

chihuahuau, Thursday, 6 May 2021 17:09 (two months ago) link

> This thread often makes me think vinyl isn't that much of a pain in the arse after all.

yeah, but i also look at the spotify thread and see people complaining about functional or ui changes every couple of weeks so...

koogs, Thursday, 6 May 2021 17:22 (two months ago) link

(update. number of unripped mix cds now > 100 thanks to Knowledge cover cds numbers 5 to 60. number of empty cases found: 1 (and not just any old case, one of those Fabric tins with the artist name embossed in the metal))

koogs, Thursday, 6 May 2021 17:24 (two months ago) link

For the most part I use the two-pass test/copy method and only scrutinize the audio when those CRCs don't match. Sometimes it's nothing I can discern, but other times it is audibly fucked up. AccurateRip is another layer of error checking and doesn't require any additional effort so I leave it on. About 1 in 20 CDs have problems on average, mostly brand new ones (since that's mostly what I'm buying). About half a dozen out of 3,000 have been completely hopeless and unrippable.

mark e. smith-moon (f. hazel), Thursday, 6 May 2021 17:44 (two months ago) link

i had never ever thought about CRC checks for any of my rips.
if i hear a skip on a ripped cd, then i get the cd out and re-rip said track after a wipe clean, and 99% of the time, that does the job.
clearly i have a much less discerning ear to most here.

mark e, Thursday, 6 May 2021 17:54 (two months ago) link

At this point when I hear a glitch in one of my rips, it's almost always on the source (latest: Waco Brothers, first track on "Freedom And Weep").

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Thursday, 6 May 2021 18:11 (two months ago) link

usually it's very apparent because for years now I buy a CD and rip it in order to be able to listen to it, so any problems tend to be obvious. But back in the day when I was ripping 100-200 CDs at a time, you couldn't check them all by listening so good error correction was worth the effort.

mark e. smith-moon (f. hazel), Thursday, 6 May 2021 18:12 (two months ago) link

> AccurateRip is another layer of error checking and doesn't require any additional effort so I leave it on

this is underselling it, assurance that someone else out there, with a different physical copy, obtained a rip that is byte-by-byte identical to yours is as good as it gets

i seldom bother listening to suspicious rips, if there are potential problems with mine i download a replacement. plus some copy protected cds are unrippable with my drive, there's no solution other than torrenting for those

chihuahuau, Thursday, 6 May 2021 18:12 (two months ago) link

I check them out sometimes because I'm curious about if I can hear them or not, but yeah usually I just sigh and re-rip them until I get a clean copy. lately though I'm buying most physical media from Bandcamp so I don't even bother ripping... just download the FLACs.

mark e. smith-moon (f. hazel), Thursday, 6 May 2021 18:20 (two months ago) link

Sometimes when I'm ripping a CD one track will come out all distorted and fucked up, and the solution I've found is to double click the CD on my desktop so it opens up like a folder, and simply drag that track to the desktop. It arrives as an AIFF file, which I can then convert to whatever I want.

but also fuck you (unperson), Thursday, 6 May 2021 18:58 (two months ago) link

Unrelated to recent discussions: substreamer for iOS just released an update after years of silence and I'm stoked. I had to change my server from libresonic to airsonic, which was kind of a pain, but the app has a dark mode and is almost gapless (this may be more about airsonic than substreamer).

I dumped Plex (for playing music) in favor of libre/airsonic years ago and never looked back. substreamer is one of the few iOS apps that work with the sub/air/libre sonic backend. I wish I could actually pay the dev.

beard papa, Thursday, 6 May 2021 23:36 (two months ago) link

The *sonic ecosystem seems to be pretty alive and developing well I have to say. I've tried Airsonic but settled on Navidrome, and using Play:Sub as the iOS app. I still like Plex but its bad handling of compilation album really lets it down.

Siegbran, Friday, 7 May 2021 07:04 (two months ago) link

Can Navidrome do smart playlists i.e. 'music added in the last two weeks'? Can it interact with scripting, i.e. as soon as a file hits folder (x) it gets added to the Library?

One Of The Bad Guys (Tracer Hand), Friday, 7 May 2021 09:27 (two months ago) link

Smart playlists is now under development but not there yet. Navidrome does automatically pick up new files in the folder every 1h (or shorter if you set it to).

As *sonic server for 3rd party clients, Navidrome is more or less the same as the others (Airsonic/etc), what I mostly like about it is the web UI which doesn't look like it's from the 1990s. The Spotify-clone theme for it is really almost a 1:1 copy.

Siegbran, Friday, 7 May 2021 12:40 (two months ago) link

Thanks.

One Of The Bad Guys (Tracer Hand), Friday, 7 May 2021 13:15 (two months ago) link

I tried it with macos but the installation was a little beyond me. I followed their instrux but got permission errors.

One Of The Bad Guys (Tracer Hand), Friday, 7 May 2021 23:17 (two months ago) link

I'll have to take a look at substreamer - I've been using iSub for years, and play:sub has never dealt well with my (very large) library. I moved from madsonic to airsonic-advanced recently and it's much faster, except that for some reason loading an album on the web player takes 10+ seconds. On the other hand I very rarely use the web UI so it's not a big deal.

toby, Monday, 10 May 2021 09:06 (two months ago) link

Navidrome seems seriously impressive - much easier to install than any other subsonic clone I've used, and it's using way less RAM (literally 50mb versus 4gb...)

toby, Thursday, 13 May 2021 06:26 (two months ago) link

i literally could not get it to install on macos. you have to create a directory in /opt and put a bunch of files in there, and another file in your Library folder, and i kept getting permission/ownership errors and i have no idea how to fix them.

Tracer Hand, Thursday, 13 May 2021 07:33 (two months ago) link

I didn't do either of those things! I literally ran it from the downloaded folder, pointing it to a config file I'd made:

/Users/admin/Downloads/navidrome_0.42.1_macOS_x86_64/navidrome --configfile '/Users/admin/Dropbox/dotfiles/navidrome/navidrome.toml'

The config file is very basic, it looks like

LogLevel = 'DEBUG'
ScanInterval = '1h'
TranscodingCacheSize = '150MiB'
MusicFolder = '/Volumes/Music 2TB/'
DataFolder = '/Volumes/Music 2TB/navidrome/'

and tbh I think the only thing here that actually really needs to be there is the MusicFolder entry.

toby, Thursday, 13 May 2021 09:13 (two months ago) link

Okay will try! There's a page on the navidrome site that has all this other junk you're supposed to do

Tracer Hand, Thursday, 13 May 2021 10:19 (two months ago) link

Navidrome is not feature complete yet (smart playlists not done yet, genre navigation etc) but it’s developing at a pretty breakneck pace at the moment, saw they’re now working on chromecast and sonos integration.

Siegbran, Thursday, 13 May 2021 11:34 (two months ago) link

Wish one of these would have gapless playback in web player.

toby, Thursday, 13 May 2021 12:18 (two months ago) link

Apparently very hard to do in-browser…

Siegbran, Thursday, 13 May 2021 19:19 (two months ago) link

and sonos integration.

i dug in about this, and its already possible according to several posts about it.
definitely gets around the dreaded 65k limit.
but i think i will stick with my own current system as its now bedded in and i find it very easy ..
but still, it could be a very good solution to a crap problem.

mark e, Thursday, 13 May 2021 19:29 (two months ago) link

Apparently very hard to do in-browser…

I want a box on my home network that has RCA cables running out to my receiver. The box would have a web interface to browse albums and play stuff, but it's not actually playing music through the browser. Can Navidrome etc do gapless playback in this case?

lukas, Thursday, 13 May 2021 19:33 (two months ago) link

That's "jukebox mode" (music playback on the server itself), the original Subsonic had this, but it's currently not implemented in Navidrome but it's one of their projects for this summer (#2).

Siegbran, Thursday, 13 May 2021 20:14 (two months ago) link

so, working around the flat clockwise from the bedroom i am now at the last chunk of cds, pop/rock a-t, two 4-sided carousels, 8 shelves to a side = 64 shelves of about 20 cds per shelf. currently on shelf 15, Crimea to Dead Can Dance.

and i must've done a good job of ripping these originally because so far i have found exactly 1 thing in this batch that i didn't have lossless copies of - Cocteau Twins, Otherness EP. i also ripped the three Belly Gepetto EPs because there was some confusion over the numbering (identical catalogue numbers a year apart, different lead tracks, typo on track 2...)

keeps me off the streets

koogs, Saturday, 15 May 2021 20:52 (two months ago) link

one month passes...

Did not know that MP3Tag is now available for macs.

toby, Sunday, 11 July 2021 20:39 (two weeks ago) link

could somebody please recommend a decent file converter for mac? FLAC to 512 AAC. mediahuman wasn't working right...

maelin, Wednesday, 21 July 2021 10:40 (one week ago) link

ALAC gives me gapless playback issues on my ipod classic and FLAC doesn't play on them at all. it's a nightmare...

maelin, Wednesday, 21 July 2021 10:42 (one week ago) link

i installed rockbox but the battery life is practically cut in half with it. a shame. running musicbee for playback and tagging on windows. so efficient.

― maelin, Sunday, February 28, 2021 6:58 PM bookmarkflaglink

are you 100% sure about rockbox cutting down battery life?
because it's usually the other way around, rockbox improves battery life, and it would also take care of your FLAC and gapless playback problems.

chihuahuau, Wednesday, 21 July 2021 11:08 (one week ago) link

thank you, but it's too late now... i switched my entire library to 512 aac.

maelin, Wednesday, 21 July 2021 23:22 (one week ago) link

there's an OS X version of Foobar 2000 that should do FLAC -> AAC conversion

mark e. smith-moon (f. hazel), Wednesday, 21 July 2021 23:34 (one week ago) link

<3333 thank you! i loved foobar on windows!

maelin, Thursday, 22 July 2021 10:56 (six days ago) link


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