Choosing a music data base

vbimport

#1

Hi I’m new to this forum and would like to start a discussion on the subject of our music data storage and access. I have called this music data base because most people use MP3 Files and occasionally Wav. Files. i have just discovered Mp4 which I understand is video although Itunes uses this medium for audio files. Most people surely are looking for a level of standardization and the ability to interchange the various formats.
I tunes and Spotify are useful mediums to find and purchase new music. Magix works well recording of old vinyls, tapes and any music audio active through the computer sound card. Unfortunately I have found mixing all of these mediums causes conflicts. It may be Itunes and Spotify seek exclusive market share and will not standardize the basic audio demand, which is to permit people to source music files from various sources store them in a known place and make playlists of the favorite compositions. Surely this is something most people would like to be able to do.
I would appreciate any suggestions :).


#2

[QUOTE=builderblake;2670606]Hi I’m new to this forum and would like to start a discussion on the subject of our music data storage and access. I have called this music data base because most people use MP3 Files and occasionally Wav. Files. i have just discovered Mp4 which I understand is video although Itunes uses this medium for audio files. Most people surely are looking for a level of standardization and the ability to interchange the various formats.
I tunes and Spotify are useful mediums to find and purchase new music. Magix works well recording of old vinyls, tapes and any music audio active through the computer sound card. Unfortunately I have found mixing all of these mediums causes conflicts. It may be Itunes and Spotify seek exclusive market share and will not standardize the basic audio demand, which is to permit people to source music files from various sources store them in a known place and make playlists of the favorite compositions. Surely this is something most people would like to be able to do.
I would appreciate any suggestions :).[/QUOTE]

MP3 is the universal original format that most if not all uses…then there is flac but that itself is higher but larger format. MP3 fits on vast majority of devices already as the bases. There is nothing wrong with MP3 format unless enough users go to another format that is the determining factor that makes or breaks a format conversion. MP3 will and most likely will be with the vast majority of users for some time to come. Unless you have distinct hearing and can differentiation the tones and pitches of which most have when they get older MP3 will more then suffice for the vast population of listeners.


#3

MediaMonkey or Foobar work well with multiple formats and can make playlists. mp3’s are fine, but depending on the music source and the original master, FLAC’s sound better. Also storage is getting cheap again, so what’s the point of mp3’s on a computer? At the least you should rip to FLAC for archival purposes, since it is lossless and can be converted to your favorite format of the moment.


#4

Don’t forget that Windows Media Player has a library function
that beats anything else I’ve seen AND it already natively plays MP4, M4A, etc…

THE thing many people miss is that Incomplete ID3 tags are sometimes worse than no tags at all, so you need to methodically tag everything.

If you don’t have a dedicated Tag Editor in your personal toolkit you aren’t serious
about maintaining your music library.

I personally use “Ultimate Tag Scanner” available (free) HERE:
http://www.xdlab.ru/en/download.htm

pay attention especially to the “Album Artist” data field, as windows media player
prioritizes this data field… and iTunes leaves it BLANK

And have fun imbedding album cover art jpegs into all your compressed media files:)


#5

According to this Microsoft link, mp4 is NOT supported natively by WMP:
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/316992

WMP doesn’t play FLAC, SHN, OGG, and other useful codecs. MMonkey and Foobar do natively or can do so after adding on a codec pack, which is easy. I know Media Monkey has made it pretty simple to locate album art for particular tracks. Not sure about Foobar.

As far as library function, iTunes and WMP in the past have sucked if you have a large number of tracks. iTunes especially chokes after you get get a few thousand tracks in. Media Monkey handles large number of files very easily and has good sorting and searching functions.

Both MMonkey and Foobar also have ID3 tag editors. However I prefer using mp3tag, as it tags both mp3’s and FLAC’s. And its free.


#6

I have Foobar and Winamp as well that I use to rip my music cds. I also installed codec into WMP12 to play flac as well. So it can play other formats but you have to add codec to it for it to play it.


#7

[QUOTE=yojimbo197;2670635]According to this Microsoft link, mp4 is NOT supported natively by WMP:
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/316992 [/QUOTE] Windows Media Player 12 (the one in Windows 7) plays MP4 video files with the .mp4 and .m3v extensions without the need to install any additional codecs, media-splitters or whatever.
I don’t know about MP4 audio-only files.


#8

[QUOTE=DrageMester;2670640]Windows Media Player 12 (the one in Windows 7) plays MP4 video files with the .mp4 and .m3v extensions without the need to install any additional codecs, media-splitters or whatever.
I don’t know about MP4 audio-only files.[/QUOTE]

Yeah unfortunately I found one of many codec links. WMP 12 will play audio MP4. It took them long enough.


#9

[QUOTE=DrageMester;2670640]Windows Media Player 12 (the one in Windows 7) plays MP4 video files with the .mp4 and .m3v extensions without the need to install any additional codecs, media-splitters or whatever.
I don’t know about MP4 audio-only files.[/QUOTE] Correction: That should be .m4v obviously.


#10

Personally I’m fond of WinAmp. Point the ‘library’ at a big folder or six or 10 or a hundred folders full of music and it sorts it all out for you by Artist or Album or Song or last time played or bitrate or just about any other way you want to sort. Search? It can find a single song in my 20,000+ item library in a tenth of a second or less. Have an un-tagged song? WinAmp will listen to it for you and make a pretty good guess as to what it is. Not to mention the best visualizations around…Example


#11

I have to agree Winamp has been a very good program to say and it does ripping music cds very well and it creates a folder and name the tracks all for you to do. The program is free or paid PRO version but the Pro is the version I would stick with.


#12

I stick with iTunes. It seems to keep all my stuff organized pretty neatly and works with my iPod. I tried MediaMonkey for awhile and while it seems like a decent program, I don’t think it’s as easy to use as iTunes.

What do you guys prefer as far as the music goes? Buying CD’s and ripping them? Digital music (such as via the iTunes Store)? Technically wouldn’t buying the music on a vinyl and using a recorder create a digital copy with better quality than what CD’s and digital music stores like iTunes offer?

As far as iTunes music goes, I don’t think it’s .mp4. I believe their music is .m4a, which is MPEG-4 Audio and I thought it was Apple’s proprietary audio format. Maybe I’m wrong, but isn’t .mp4 MPEG-4 Video? Apple also has a proprietary format for that too - .m4v - which is designed for Quicktime.

Wouldn’t it be so much easier if everybody would just use open source stuff? I mean wouldn’t it be less expensive and wouldn’t it have more compatibility?


#13

[QUOTE=yojimbo197;2670635]According to this Microsoft link, mp4 is NOT supported natively by WMP:
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/316992

WMP doesn’t play FLAC, SHN, OGG, and other useful codecs. MMonkey and Foobar do natively or can do so after adding on a codec pack, which is easy. I know Media Monkey has made it pretty simple to locate album art for particular tracks. Not sure about Foobar.

As far as library function, iTunes and WMP in the past have sucked if you have a large number of tracks. iTunes especially chokes after you get get a few thousand tracks in. Media Monkey handles large number of files very easily and has good sorting and searching functions.

Both MMonkey and Foobar also have ID3 tag editors. However I prefer using mp3tag, as it tags both mp3’s and FLAC’s. And its free.[/QUOTE]

MP3’s play fine on all my windows7 computers and thus WMP12.
XP or Vista with WMP11 Don’t play mp4’s, So I’m going to take
the time to see that microsoft page you are referencing.
(mp4 isn’t listed by microsoft, but it doesn’t specifically
exclude it either) But I’ve been playing mp4’s for years.

MKV and FLV do not play in WMP which is why I convert MKV
and FLV to mp4 as standard practice.

Ultimate Tag Scanner is also free.

as for “large number of files” I’ve currently got just over 36,000 Audio files, 373 Full Length Concerts & 400-ish feature films and another
3500 “short” (<10min) Videos.

Simply being unable to play FLV files is not the entire issue with FLV’s
Windows7 won’t even show thumbnails or do previews of FLV, I don’t know about Windows8.

What I prefer for buying new content is to buy a physical CD,
“ripping” it, creating mp3’s and tagging it myself.

Working from Vinyl? No.

Since the about 1990 everything is digitally mastered anyway
so any music would need to be converted to analog to put it on vinyl
anyway, then converting it back to digital?

People complain about “lossy” mp3 but reality is that analog vinyl
probably loses more signal being reduced from the digital master
than that which is stripped away creating mp3 from CDDA.

And that’s presuming broadcast quality turntable and recording from a “Virgin” vinyl disc. Vinyl suffers a loss of quality every time it’s played.

If I could buy new audio content as FLAC or WAV I could
live without a a physical disc.


#14

There are three file types I associate with iTunes.

m4a audio files
m4p audio files (these are “protected” files)
mp4 Video files which can be either protected or not without
it being reflected in the file extension


#15

+1foobar


#17

[QUOTE=builderblake;2670606]Hi I’m new to this forum and would like to start a discussion on the subject of our music data storage and access. I have called this music data base because most people use MP3 Files and occasionally Wav. Files. i have just discovered Mp4 which I understand is video although Itunes uses this medium for audio files. Most people surely are looking for a level of standardization and the ability to interchange the various formats.
I tunes and Spotify are useful mediums to find and purchase new music. Magix works well recording of old vinyls, tapes and any music audio active through the computer sound card. Unfortunately I have found mixing all of these mediums causes conflicts. It may be Itunes and Spotify seek exclusive market share and will not standardize the basic audio demand, which is to permit people to source music files from various sources store them in a known place and make playlists of the favorite compositions. Surely this is something most people would like to be able to do.
I would appreciate any suggestions :).[/QUOTE]

Use https://www.hdtracks.com/.

All their music is available in FLAC or ALAC (lossless). I believe CD quality is 44.1kHz/16 bits, while this site offers 88kHz/24 bits and I think 176kHz/24 bits. Very high quality audio. I think it’s slightly smaller in file size than if you ripped a CD also.

I have bought a couple of albums from there and it’s very high quality. I mean if you listen to this on a good audio system, you can really tell the difference between AAC (iTunes Store) and CD quality.


#18

[QUOTE=builderblake;2670606]Hi I’m new to this forum and would like to start a discussion on the subject of our music data storage and access. I have called this music data base because most people use MP3 Files and occasionally Wav. Files. i have just discovered Mp4 which I understand is video although Itunes uses this medium for audio files. Most people surely are looking for a level of standardization and the ability to interchange the various formats.
I tunes and Spotify are useful mediums to find and purchase new music. Magix works well recording of old vinyls, tapes and any music audio active through the computer sound card. Unfortunately I have found mixing all of these mediums causes conflicts. It may be Itunes and Spotify seek exclusive market share and will not standardize the basic audio demand, which is to permit people to source music files from various sources store them in a known place and make playlists of the favorite compositions. Surely this is something most people would like to be able to do.
I would appreciate any suggestions :).[/QUOTE]

Um, to be honest, I don’t quite understand what you are looking for? Interchanging between various formats (for example .mp4 -> .mp3) is not a problem assuming that the encoder and decoder is available freely and the orginating format is not riddled with DRM disease of some kind.

If you can choose, always use as high quality copy as possible for the “master copy”. For example, I have a album in lossless format (FLAC) in my hard drive. If I want a lower quality mp3 copy of it to my car or phone, it’s just matter of few clicks.

But remember to understand the difference between lossless and lossy formats. Encoding something to a lossy format (.mp3, .mp4 etc.) lowers audio fidelity. So re-encoding .mp3 to .flac or .mp3 to .mp4 is pointless fidelity-wise. Of course if you have a .mp4 file and you need to get it to your mp3-player, you’ll have to re-encode it (which does lower the audio quality, though difference may be subtle). You may convert lossless format to another lossless format without reducing audio quality.

And what kind of conflicts you are talking about? On my collection, there are songs ripped from a vinyl, ripped from a cassette, ripped from a CD, bought online and so on. On the top of my head, I can say that at least .flac, .ogg, .mp3, .mp4, .flv, and .mp2 -formatted files. And there is no conflicts. Just press play.