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Question Best option to get back to ripping CD's?

Discussion in 'Audio' started by kazoo, Jan 24, 2016.

  1. kazoo

    kazoo Member

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    PLEASE IGNORE FOLLOWING QUESTION - for a reason know only to Win 7, the issue resolved itself and the OS recognized the Plextor drive. All is well that ends well.


    I am probably making this harder than it really is.

    A Plextor PX-755UF was my Old Faithful for ripping with EAC back when. The PC I used to use it with is now running Win 7 Pro (x64) which does not recognize the old Plextor, and I have not been able to locate a driver for that OS-hardware combination. Actually, I have found several websites, I know nothing about, that purport to have a driver, but they all want me to sign up, install software, and run a scan before going further. I am not comfortable with that program unless somebody I trust vouches for the website.

    I want to get back to ripping CD's with EAC and encoding mp3's with LAME. I am open to a software solution to use the old PX 755UF or to buying a new drive. The computer I would like to use, the one mentioned, above running Win 7, has only USB 2. I do have a new laptop with faster connections - USB 3 and whatever. What is the best option to get back to making high quality mp3's?

    Any help would be greatly appreciate!
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2016
  2. aldan

    aldan Active member

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    your in luck.new burners are dirt cheap.$25 cdn will buy you a decent one.it is strange tho that win7 doesnt recognize the burner.never had that problem and never had to install any drivers.what are your pc specs?
     
  3. kazoo

    kazoo Member

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    Note, original post edited to indicate problem had mysteriously resolved on its own. I have no idea why the drive was not recognized and Windows was looking for a driver.
     
  4. aldan

    aldan Active member

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    even better.cheers
     
  5. Mez

    Mez Active member

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    I would also look into a ripper like dbPowerAmp or MediaMonkey that uses AccurateRip. Actually newer versions of EAC also can use AccurateRip You may want to keep the old EAC (I would) If the tune is in the database that is a more accurate rip than a secure rip. The secure rip just figures it got the read correct if the second read exactly matches the first read. Accurip has a database of CRCs and you are comparing your CRC of hundreds of sessions. It reads in burst mode and only reads once if it gets the right CRC so it is very fast. If it isn't in the database EAC is much better. Accurip will even rate your player. This is just a thought.

    A handy table of rippers
    http://wiki.hydrogenaud.io/index.php?title=Comparison_of_CD_rippers
    Some of the rippers are new to me but I have the 2 top rippers (the first 2) and doubt that I will use anything other than those 2.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2016
  6. hogger129

    hogger129 Member

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    Why not just keep using EAC? Version 1.2 just came out. EAC is free.

    You can get an external LG CD/DVD drive at Best Buy for ~$35. As long as the rips come out as verified by AccurateRip, you're fine. The reason Plextor drives were held in such high regard is because their ability to read past errors was VERY good.

    If not EAC, then dBpoweramp is a really good software that imo, is just as good as EAC. It costs $38 for the Reference version with the secure ripping features though. dBpoweramp can be set up where it rips once, but encodes the rip to several different formats at once (Multi-Encoder).

    I also recommend ripping to FLAC and encoding from those files because it will give you an archival copy. And how come MP3? AAC is a superior lossy format. Even Ogg Vorbis is superior to MP3.
     
  7. Mez

    Mez Active member

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    Hogger where did you get your data to grade your encoders. Lame VBR has no known defects. This took hundreds if not thousands of audiophiles years to complete. AAC has hundreds of defects reported to Apple many years ago. 600+ have been around for over a decade. They have never fixed any of them.


    VBR set to 0 has crazy fidelity. 19980 hz and wave has 20000. No one can tell the difference in a double blind test. Not enough audiophiles use ogg to create a defect list that I know of.

    All players play mp3s.

    DB poweramp is much faster than EAC. If the CD is in accurip the quality will be the same. If it isn't use EAC. I don't even make archivEl copies anymore. I have discovered VBR 0 are so HiFi they will do. Many years ago we ran an experiment here converting them to wave and back several times. We could not tell the first from the last.
     
  8. hogger129

    hogger129 Member

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    Check Hydrogenaud.io. iTunes AAC is consistently winning listening tests over there. AAC is also a more efficient codec (that is you get better sound at the same bitrate). The same goes for Ogg Vorbis. It consistently beats MP3.

    LAME -v0 does sound fine most times. Unless you have really high-end equipment and a good ear, odds are you will not be able to properly ABX it from a lossless source. But AAC and Ogg Vorbis do also. "Audiophiles" are probably using FLAC files, not lossy encoding.

    And just as many will play AAC, Ogg Vorbis and FLAC. Name one player does not play these formats in 2016.


    dBpoweramp hasn't been proven to be any faster than EAC. That is totally dependent upon the drive used for ripping and the disc - all other settings being equal.

    EAC is free. dBpoweramp Reference is not.

    If you find that LAME -v0 MP3 are "hifi" then I have to ask what equipment you're listening on. I've never found any MP3 to sound as good as the same thing encoded as AAC, Ogg Vorbis or FLAC.

    Even microSD cards that many players can use are available up to 200gb now. There is not any good reason to use lossy encoding much anymore. My own 200gb microSD card has ~5000 files stored on it encoded as FLAC -8.

    Converting MP3 to WAV and then back to MP3 again numerous times, and you couldn't tell the difference? Now this is just getting laughable.


    Look I've done this before many times, take my advice. Rip to FLAC. Store those FLAC files on an external HDD for backup. Use another program to make lossy or lossless copies for your portables. Do it right one time through.




    Umm, that isn't how AccurateRip works. Being in the AccurateRip database doesn't mean a more accurate rip than if it isn't in there. EAC will give you either a "secure" or "unsecure" rip if you have Secure ripping turned on. It is just comparing that secure rip to the AR database if you turn that feature on. EAC is not superior to any of the other tools so long as it verifies a secure rip. AR is just another tool it employs to ensure a good rip.
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2016
  9. Mez

    Mez Active member

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    I don't use current versions of EAC or dbPowerAmp. I am wrong on the ripping speed. They are the same. My version of EAC only rips securely.

    Hydrogenaudio is the community that makes those defect lists you need to explore that site more. They also have more than one consensus. The one I belong to believes if you can't consistently tell the difference in a double blind test you can't tell the difference then there are the delusionals. It is a fact that humans over 20 yrs old can't hear above 18kHz. If you don't believe me google mosquito tones or there are links in the top sticky. So unless you are a teenager your belief
    that you can hear thing you can't you are in the delusional group. Even if you could actually hear the difference the belief that you can tell the difference between 20,000 and 19,980. That is like seeing a mountain in the distance that is supposed to be 20,000 ft high and claim the surveyors are wrong it is really only 19,980 ft. That is more reasonable than your statement since 99.99% of music cuts don't even have a 20kh tone for you to miss. You are claiming you can tell the difference between pieces that ARE identical. Even if you could hear a note that was there a tone 99.99% at the end of your range would be so quite it would be inaudible if it was naturally produced. As you approach your audible limit the tone needs to be extremely loud for you to hear it. A 20k tone would be a resonance tone produced by an acoustic instrument like a violin. They can only be seen on equipment read outs not heard.

    If you want to believe you have super human hearing who am I to argue with you?

    BTW, I have amazing equipment. It would almost cost 50k USDs to replace it today. It was purchased in the 70s during the height of audio excellence. The good stuff today are reconditioned equipment built then. I have seen new speakers that are comparable but they run 10k each.


    BTW
     
  10. hogger129

    hogger129 Member

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    I never claimed to have superhuman hearing. I'm simply stating that AAC and Ogg Vorbis are better formats than MP3. I am also saying, rip to a lossless format as a backup and encode from that. EAC is free. If it works fine for someone, then there is no reason to spend $38 on dBpoweramp Reference. If I had equipment that costs $50k, and I couldn't hear a difference between MP3 and FLAC, then I would have to question if something was wrong with the equipment or if my hearing was going. I've done the double-blind tests on $300 equipment and all my blind tests told me there is an audible difference.
     
  11. Mez

    Mez Active member

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    Firstly, I didn't explain the reasoning behind my ripping statement. Just because something is in accurip doesn't insure a perfect rip. With dbPoweramp, if the block didn't rip correctly dbPoweramp rerips using different modes until it is correct or you are notified that the track is in accurate. After the block, it goes back to bust mode. Only troublesome blocks are ripped using secure mode. This means you get the speed of burst mode but still get an accurate rip if that is at all possible.

    You can't competently lump all mp3s together because they are so different. From your responses this appears to be way over your technical capacity. Lame VBR has no known defects. You must not understand that concept. Both lossless and
     
  12. Mez

    Mez Active member

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    My version of dbPoweramp defaults to burst mode then switches to secure mode if a block doesn't pass Accurip. It goes back to burst mode for the next block. Burst more is much faster than secure mode. If the CD is not in accurip it rips the entire CD in burst mode. That might be OK or not. Most CDs in new or good shape can be accurately ripped in bust mode. I use secure rips using EAC for CDs not in accurip.

    OK I did some searching on Hydrogenaudio. The testing I saw and I reviewed several, only used CBR mp3s from various manufacturers and none were high end encoders. The tests looked rigged to make AAC look good. Nero seemed to be a favorite contestant against AAC probably because it is crap. None tested against Lame mp3s or even Helix. They were testing apples against oranges then made sweeping generalities about all mp3s from the performance of the lowest fidelity mp3 (CBR). I couldn't find that large defect list. Maybe Apple finally fixed the list or maybe I just couldn't find it. I am not going to waste my time over this. Believe what you want.

    CBR mp3s do not use psychoacoustic compression. That throws away tones you can't hear. For instance, in the 1812 Overture you can't hear the string instruments when the cannon goes off. This is compression without fidelity loss. It is unfair to compare something without psychoacoustic compression to something that does. It is like racing a bicycle against a motorcycle. Mp3s were the first format to use psychoacoustic compression so if you are going to compare do it right.
     
  13. hogger129

    hogger129 Member

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    ^ Here you go.

    http://listening-test.coresv.net/results.htm

    This was done in 2014 btw.
     
  14. Mez

    Mez Active member

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    That test was fair and believable. They tested Lame VBR mp3s. The conclusions seemed informative with no axe to grind unlike all the ones I saw performed by Apple fan boys. What was tested was the ability to maintain fidelity with lower bit rates. This is important if you are very space limited. Lame is always best in maximum HiFi and does poorer and poorer as you lower the fidelity. For super low fidelity aac is one of the better formats while Lame stinks. These would be used for audio books. Since half my players don't play aac I stick to mp3s even for audio books. A high C is only 2 KHz. Fidelity is all about the highest frequency preserved. High frequencies usually can't be heard but use up all the band width. Even though lossless preserves 20 kHz a 30 year old may only hear 15 kHz or lower. Helix had an artifact at this range they would not fix. I remember a thread discussing it. Graphically it was loud and about 15 kHz. No one could hear it so it created a bit of a buzz. The mp3 and wave snippets were included with the post so interested parties could see the artifact then listen to it. Trying to preserve very quiet resonance tones 15 kHz is purely academic because they have no real value let alone 20 kHz. resonance tones. Resonance tones are mostly made by stringed instruments. The musician plays a note but other notes/tones are venerated in the body of the instrument. The ones that are low enough and loud enough to be heard add to the richness of the music.

    Back on track, I always use extreme settings for Lame. I don't mind the small added file size. They are much smaller than lossless. That is my compromise. At those settings I get an exact audio rendering of the lossless audio. You can't do better than perfect. CD technology has not changed in 35 years so we do not need to continue to catch up to new wrinkles. Improvements are small, like packing more fidelity into a smaller file. It is a real improvement so I am not going to knock it. It still doesn't mean Lame V0 mp3s are crap. They are the highest fidelity Lame mp3s are extremely over kill.
     
  15. hogger129

    hogger129 Member

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    Yes I agree, LAME -v0 MP3 are fine. All I was trying to say is that AAC and Ogg Vorbis (and it looks like Opus) are more efficient codecs. That may be an advantage if you're pressed for space and want to maintain more fidelity at low bandwidth like 128kbps or 160kbps.
     
  16. Mez

    Mez Active member

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    I will agree with that. I suspect AAC has been overhauled. Up to that point it was probably just an mp3 with a different header. When they added psychoacoustic compression they hired Fraunhofer. They invented the mp3 format but couldn't compete with Lame and other companies because their programmers couldn't handle the complexities of psychoacoustic compression. Early AAC was plagued with flaws/artifacts and they were not fixed. Apple was more into the bottom line than quality. It would have been easier (cheaper) just to use the Fraunhofer body and Fraunhofer routines. They had both the CBR routine and the psychoacoustic routine built and debugged to populate their mp3 frames. Even back then Apple had talking heads saying what a wonder AAC was and ran tests against CBR mp3s to prove its superiority. You can see where my initial response came from. For most of its life, I am sure AAC used mp3 frames (the body of the audio). The test you pointed to indicates a probable fundamental change in the AAC. That is all for the good. Maybe Apple has hired Opus to over haul AAC or just maybe they have hired their own audio engineers. It is not far fetched that someone has figured out how to store audio more tightly than a product devised 30 years ago. I am sure they have kept the good of the mp3. The biggest is the loudness. To normalize a batch of mp3s that process is trivial. You change the loudness setting in the header. To normalize lossless every bit of data needs to be altered. I have learned the hard way the less altering you do the better. Of course, I figure only a true idiot would normalize lossless music. There is merit keeping a lossless archive but to listen to it??? Good lossy music has far more fidelity than we can hear not less.

    Music is the only area I know about where Apple clearly holds the upper hand over Android. I was surprised my late model android lacks a base response compared with any ipod. They might save a penny on a $#500 phone. Granted you can't actually hear anything below 20 Hz but you can sure feel it with high end speakers or certain in the ear buds. Some go as low as 6 Hz but you can easily pick up buds that have a base response below 10. Not much music has notes this low but some do. For those you need demanding equipment so you can hear what the composer wanted you to hear.
     
  17. hogger129

    hogger129 Member

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    If you're looking for an inexpensive music player that sounds great, check out Fiio.
     
  18. Mez

    Mez Active member

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    I am not looking, I have several ipods that I don't use just because I refuse to walk around with more than one electronic device. Still, I did look it up. It looked good for what I could see. One praise by a talking head got me worried. I hate meaningless colorful descriptions. It is like the guy wants to sell me a bridge. I want fidelity but the controls are also very important. I first hated the ipod circle but learned to love it. I often listen to audio books. That control was the least painless way to back up an audio book to replay something you didn't fully 'get'. I have given up on listening to audio books on my cell phone.

    Do you have one?
     
  19. hogger129

    hogger129 Member

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    Yes, I have the X1.

    A few things I like about it over years of iPods:
    -Sounds better
    -Uses microSD cards, thus don't need to buy a new device when more storage comes out
    -Plays any format I throw at it (FLAC, WAV, Apple Lossless, AIFF, AAC, MP3, Ogg Vorbis, Opus)
    -iTunes isn't needed to sync songs to it (I use Windows Media Player)
    -Costs $99

    You could also check out the M3 for $49. It's a little bit smaller, doesn't have the scroll wheel, and probably isn't going to have as refined sound as the X1, X3 or X5. It also will not play 24-bit files if that matters to you.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2016
  20. Mez

    Mez Active member

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    Yes, I liked the SD card. I had one that takes a card but the controls are terrible so I don't use it.
     

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