Old 30-01-2011   #1
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Best way to make audio CD-R for car stereo

G'day all,

I'd like to ask what is the best way to make an audio CD-R for my car stereo. I'm looking for best music quality with best compatibility.

I currently burn my CDs at 8x - 12x using Burrrn, which I find pretty good actually. Burner is a standard CD/DVD Matshita that came with my laptop, which I hear is crap.

I download my music as flac. Burrrn converts them to wav for my cd: 1411 kbps, 16 bit, 44100 Hz.

If I'm right, the CD-R brand and burner used have a big influence on how the CD turns out. I'm living in Saudi Arabia, and the only cds I can get a hold of here are the cheap variants made in Taiwan and India.

I bought a few Maxell, Imation, Basic, TDK and Sony Supremas cd's. All were either Ritek or Mosen Baer, according to Burrrn. The Sony Supremas however was identified as a Sony.

So here are my questions:
1. Does CD brand and burner quality affect a cd's music quality and compatibility?
2. If so, which cheap CD-R can I buy which is good for music? And which CD burner should I buy, how much should I expect to pay?
3. What is the best burning speed for best sound quality and cd compatibility? Does it vary for different brands of CD-R?
4. Which CD burning software should I use? Is Burrrn good enough?
5. Am I using the right music format? Is wav the best for audio? Is there any difference in sound quality and cd compatibility between using 16, 24, 32 bit and 32 bit float?
6. Is there anything else which I should I know concerning this topic?

Thanks in advance
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Old 30-01-2011   #2
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Hi,
Quote:
Originally Posted by commodore_93 View Post
I'd like to ask what is the best way to make an audio CD-R for my car stereo. I'm looking for best music quality with best compatibility.

If I'm right, the CD-R brand and burner used have a big influence on how the CD turns out.
Exactly. With many CD players you won't notice a difference. Trouble starts if your CD player was not designed to work with CD-R.
Quote:
I bought a few Maxell, Imation, Basic, TDK and Sony Supremas cd's. All were either Ritek or Mosen Baer, according to Burrrn. The Sony Supremas however was identified as a Sony.
I am focussing on picky CD players. I'd then go with Maxell branded Riteks.
Quote:
1. Does CD brand and burner quality affect a cd's music quality and compatibility?
Yes.
Quote:
2. If so, which cheap CD-R can I buy which is good for music?
See above: Maxell branded Ritek. Don't expect them to last very long, but picky players have a good chance to read them.
Quote:
And which CD burner should I buy, how much should I expect to pay?
This depends on your local market. A high price does not mean the drive is better than a cheaper one. My personal favourites for CD application are LG drives.
Quote:
3. What is the best burning speed for best sound quality and cd compatibility? Does it vary for different brands of CD-R?
It depends on the drive and the media. As a rule of thumb, you should normally be okay with 16x (on a desktop drive). On a laptop slim drive, one notch lower (8x-12x) often helps in case of readability problems.

Quote:
4. Which CD burning software should I use? Is Burrrn good enough?
Just use the software you like most. Unless a certain piece of software is heavilly buggy, there is no difference quality wise.
Quote:
5. Am I using the right music format? Is wav the best for audio?
The only one. Any CD writing software that supports the creation of CD audio should adjust the parameters automagically.
Quote:
Is there any difference in sound quality and cd compatibility between using 16, 24, 32 bit and 32 bit float?
The standard for CDDA (audio CD) is 16bit. Anything else might not work in your players.

Michael
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Old 30-01-2011   #3
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Thanks. The player in my car is a standard audio cd player from 2005, very annoyingly picky. My local computer store's got Lite-On CD/DVD burners for around $40, usb plug-in, compatible with my laptop. Should I go for it, or will my current burner give me the same result (in terms of sound quality and compatibility)?
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Old 30-01-2011   #4
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Oh and also, is there anyone on the forum who has a good understanding in car stereos? I'm looking to make a few small and inexpensive changes for some decent sound quality?
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Old 30-01-2011   #5
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Re: Best way to make audio CD-R for car stereo

Maybe you can consider an alternative: buy a new car stereo provided of an USB port. In this way you can play music from the pendrive and burning CDs is not necessary anymore.

Another (better) solution is to use a car stereo provided of a RCA input connector, because you can connect a player to the car stereo in that way. Some "mp3"player are able to read FLAC files, that are lossless, i.e. exactly the same quality of the original CDs, so you can store a hundred or more discs in a single player
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Old 31-01-2011   #6
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I'm not planning on replacing the headunit, since it would spoil the look of the center console and I would lose my steering wheel controls.

I've already got 2 JVC CSV626 speakers installed on the driver and front passenger doors, but the sound feels sort of "off-beat" and "tinny", not as good as I expected it would be. I think the power output of the headunit is not strong enough to drive these speakers. Should I consider buying an amplifier?

Sorry if this seems off the subject of CDs, but I really don't know who to ask for help, and I'm not all that familiar with sound systems. Would be great of you guys could lend me a hand here.
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Old 31-01-2011   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by commodore_93 View Post
The player in my car is a standard audio cd player from 2005, very annoyingly picky.
Okay.
Quote:
My local computer store's got Lite-On CD/DVD burners for around $40, usb plug-in, compatible with my laptop. Should I go for it, or will my current burner give me the same result (in terms of sound quality and compatibility)?
I don't like Liteon drives for their poor CD quality. Also stay clear from external USB drives without external power supply.

Michael
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