Making full quality CD backups

Hey everyone. This is probably a common question but here we go.

I have a bunch of CDs and because they tend to get scratched fast, I’d like to make some full quality backups. This is for playing on my stereo, so MP3s won’t cut it. When I play MP3s on the stereo the sound is noticeably lower in quality.

Is there a way to exactly copy over the sound, losslessly, then burn it to another CD? I could rip to WAV but that would require an enormous amount of space. The files wouldn’t fit on the burned CD. FLAC?

Thanks.

Simply copy the discs…no big deal

Your mp3 playback issue is likely because you have low bitrate mp3’s. Use a higher bitrate, such as 320, and you likely won’t notice much difference.

[QUOTE=howanst;2198296]Hey everyone. This is probably a common question but here we go.

I have a bunch of CDs and because they tend to get scratched fast, I’d like to make some full quality backups. This is for playing on my stereo, so MP3s won’t cut it. When I play MP3s on the stereo the sound is noticeably lower in quality.

Is there a way to exactly copy over the sound, losslessly, then burn it to another CD?[B] I could rip to WAV but that would require an enormous amount of space. [/B]The files wouldn’t fit on the burned CD. FLAC?

Thanks.[/QUOTE]
The ability to copy audio CD’s is available in almost burning type app and has been for many years. If you only have one burner you will need some space as the software will have to temporarily store the image on your HD before burning to a blank.

If you wish to store the tracks on your hard drive in lossless compressed form then flac will do nicely. Flac files can then be used to create/burn a normal audio cd with various free applications (e.g. Burrrn).

I second, the flac suggestion…keep your archive backed up and safe for future burns or conversion to mp3,aac, whatever…

Well, at present I’m using FreeRIP and ImgBurn. According to this, standard audio CDs are all 44,100 Hz, 16-bit, so there’s no point using higher sample or bit rates (e.g. 32-bit float). The postings are from 2004, are they still accurate?

By the way, In FreeRIP, When I rip tracks to FLAC, the opening few seconds are always messed up (there’s a little distorted skip after the first second or so) when I play the files in VLC, although they play fine in Winamp. Rip the same tracks to WAV then encode them to FLAC, and VLC plays them with no problems. Weird.

Well,maybe a better ripper will work for you… Try EAC and rip to flac…

http://www.exactaudiocopy.de/

http://wiki.hydrogenaudio.org/index.php?title=EAC_and_FLAC

btw, you can rip to wav if you like, I however see no point ,if you’re going to convert to flac anyway…VLC,as far as I know is not the best choice (IMO) to play flac files…I use foobar2k or winamp…

For 1 to 1 copies of audio CDs all you need is ImgBurn. Read mode, followed by Write mode. Easy Peasy and 100% the same.

Hey olyteddy, I agree with you buddie…I’m not sure if the OP needs 1:1 copies or backup files to flac on HDD for future use…

Just to be clear though, is this topic about standard audio CDs being 44,100 Hz, 16-bit quality correct, meaning that ripping to WAV with higher quality settings (like 48,000 Hz, 32-bit float) would be pointless?

Yes and yes…

You can also rip/encode to the lossless Monkey’s Audio (APE) format instead of FLAC. You can do this directly from e.g. Exact Audio Copy or from J.River Media Jukebox.

APE and FLAC each have their advantages (I prefer APE).

Well I guess I got old ears, and unlike the OP I find that my mp3s sound great. All have been made with the latest Lame new VBR settings. I use V1 (similar to the older -alt -preset -standard). The resultant file is a little larger than a CBR 192 kb/s, and to me sound identical to the original ( ‘transparent’ is the term used).

[I]-V0 (~230 kbps),[B] -V1 (~210 kbps)[/B], -V2 (~190 kbps) or -V3 (~170 kbps) are recommended. These settings will normally produce transparent encoding (transparent = most people can’t distinguish the MP3 from the original in an ABX blind test).[/I]

A large part of the reason I prefer mp3s is because of the wonderful MP3Gain (which uses Replay Gain, not some Peak normalization). They sound great on my home rig and mp3 player all at the same volume with no clipping. But for me it’s a convenient listening/playback thing, not for archiving.

when people actually cared about saving HardDisk Drive space FLAC
and various other losless compression codecs were actually useful…

To my point of vew the only actually losless codecs that are useful
are those that can be directly played back on your portable device of choice.

For storing music files on your desktop there is no excuse for “needing” compression, yes they call FLAC "lossless"
but I personally have my doubts, because you always lose
something in decompression.

And HDD’s are cheap and have probably dropped in price again as I’ve taken the time to type this.

You can buy a 320Gb HDD for about $50 that’s $0.15/Gigabyte
when HDD space is HALF the price of blank recordable media…

Ok, I’ll admit that it’s POSSIBLE you can come up with an excuse for supporting losless compression codecs, but I’m not going to hold my breath while you think one up.

FLAC, WAV and others lack one thing to make them as “computer friendly” as mp3 files… tags.

the ID3 tag is what makes mp3’s shine for mobile (car)and portable (personal playback and notebook computers)

As for audio quality being “lower” with mp3’s if that is truely
the case then to borrow a saying from a friend in Alabama;
“Ya’ll ain’t doin’ it right!”

TOO much compression
POOR compression algorythm
(or simply the wrong one for the bitrate)

the idea that less data about the music automatically makes the sound inferior is hogwash.

The Human ear is an imprecise analog device.

AD

[quote=AllanDeGroot;2199010]For storing music files on your desktop there is no excuse for “needing” compression, yes they call FLAC “lossless” but I personally have my doubts, because you always lose something in decompression.[/quote] The reason for needing compression is when you don’t have space to store all your CDs in an uncompressed format.

You do NOT lose anything in compressing/decompression using [B]lossless[/B] formats such as FLAC or APE - that is the very definition of “lossless”!

A WAV file that is compressed to a lossless format and then decompressed back to a WAV file will be bit-identical to the original file, with the possible exception of header information - all sound data will be the same bit-for-bit.

FLAC, WAV and others lack one thing to make them as “computer friendly” as mp3 files… tags.
Monkey’s Audio (APE) files support tags which is one of the reasons I like that lossless format.

I don’t think the APE format is supported by any portable players, but some audio/jukebox programs for Windows support this format e.g. J.River Media Jukebox.

WAV audio is quite compressible without loss. If you doubt it, run a WAV file through WinRAR or PKZip. There’s a lot of wasted space in WAV. FWIW I just RARed a 63MB WAV to a 39MB RAR…

AD wrote,

"For storing music files on your desktop there is no excuse for “needing” compression, yes they call FLAC “lossless"
but I personally have my doubts, because you always lose
something in decompression.”…

Lossless is lossless… You don’t worry about losing letters when zipping a word doc do you?
GTFOH!..