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Basic Capture And Burning Question


Shawn M.

Question

Sorry if I use incorrect terminology or otherwise show that I don't know what I'm talking about. It happens to me a lot. :)

 

Here's the issue: I want to copy my substantial (700 CDs) music collection onto the hard drive of a new laptop. My ultimate goal is to be able to burn compilation CD-Rs that have the same quality sound as the original source. I currently have Creator 9 but haven't used it much. I vaguely understand that it supports capture in a number of audio file formats. I realize, however, that some newer formats may require Creator 10. First question: Does anyone have any advice for me on whether I will need Creator 10?

 

Let me also mention that I have considered using WAV files, but everyone says they will take up too much space. Because I don't want to compromise on sound quality, some have suggested using the compressed FLAC format. Second question: Since I will be using either Creator 9 or 10, does anyone have thoughts about whether I should use FLAC or should I consider other lossless files?

 

Also, I really want to be able to tag by artist, album, and song AND also have the individual songs within the album file stay in the order in which they appear on the album. I realize that my preference regarding the ordering of the songs may be something that can be accomplished through changing the settings on the Roxio software rather than choosing the right format. I just can't figure out how to do it, and would welcome any input. Third question: How do I "tag" so that the songs stay in order? Is that a function of the software settings or the file format?

 

Final question: Irrespective of the compressed lossless file format I choose, will the Creator software decompress the file so that my burned copy will actually be the same quality as my original CD? Or is there some additional software that I'll have to have?

 

If there is another thread or another site that I should check out to get answers to these questions, please just post the link. I will really appreciate any insight. Thanks, Shawn

 

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Lots of questions. You don't need EMC 10, if you have the full version of EMC 9, on your computer.

 

You use Music Disc Creator for your compilation. I prefer setting up folders for the different compilations, then using Music Disc Creator to rip the tracks, directly from different CD's, as .wav files, to the different folders.

 

I then burn them to a CD, in the order that I want them to play.

 

I don't care about the tagging of the selections, but that can be done with Music Disc Creator, too.

 

Someone else will probably drop in and give you more information on how to do it. Good luck, and report back, in a year, when your are done compiling those 700 CD's. :)

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Tagging - In Music disc creator, right click on the tracks, select 'edit audio tags' and enter the relevant info if it is not already there. [Note: You can also select 'edit song information' by right clicking on the file name on your hard disc without going into EMC].

 

Make sure 'track number' is the order you want to play. I normally check the box 'embed or replace tags inside the audio files......'

 

On the 'File' menu, select 'project settings' and check the box 'rename tracks to ensure playback order'.

 

Other features you may want to experiment with..............

 

Having added the tracks you want, in the folder pane (the left hand side pane), right click on the folder name and select 'arrange by'. There are several options here, but some of the results can be not exactly what you would expect to see, so be prepared to have to spend a lot of time re-doing or cutting your losses and just starting again!

 

GBR

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Large external USB connected hard drives are pretty inexpensive now. I would suggest getting one for those CD's. If you get one large enough you can keep the original uncompressed wav files rather than flac. Flac will compress by about 50 %.

 

Later when you want to make compilation cds or audio DVDs, the music files do not have to be decompressed

 

Of course the real question is can you personally tell the difference between audio cds and mp3 music? A lot of people don't hear the difference. mp3 files are about 10% of the size of a wav file.

 

Lets see -700 cds by approx 12 cuts per CD by approx 50 mb per wav file = 420,000 MB . If my math is correct, that 420 gigs. I don't know of any notebooks that have that large an internal hard drive. Even stored as FLAC. most laptops don't have that size. You might want to consider something in the 650 to 1tb drive.

 

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Thanks for the great information. All of that is very useful. I actually considered using an external drive but in the final analysis wanted something that was as portable as possible. The website from which I'm buying the laptop allowed me to configure it with a 500GB hard drive, which it described in parentheses as "250GB x 2." So I am assuming it has two hard drives and that it is programmed to treat them as one, but you guys would probably know better. If I've made a huge mistake with the "250GB x 2" configuration, please let me know that. :)

 

In any event, my intention in selecting a laptop with that much storage was to allow all the music to be copied in WAV if that's the only way it can happen. After I submitted the order, one of the IT guys I work with said FLAC would be a good choice for me because those files aren't compressed like an mp3 file. He claimed that, unlike an mp3 file, which as you say, sounds fine but we all know actually cuts out some audio content, FLAC files work like a ZIP file does for data - it somehow stores it in a fashion that requires less space, but with the proper decoder (??? I'm guessing here) is able to be opened in a way that is exactly like the source. That's the reason I asked about whether I would need some additional software in order to burn - my understanding (which could be very wrong) of how FLACs work suggests that you need some way to decode the compressed file when you want to play it back or burn it in a format identical to the source, and I thought it might be a proprietary thing that Creator might not be able to add to its suite. Does that make any sense? Thanks again for everyone's great input.

 

 

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