What's the best way to rip cd's?

New laptop is on its way from Dell, and I’m going to start ripping cd’s straight away.
I want to keep 'em in MP3 format, for compatability with players etc (and thats final :D)

What’s the best rate to rip 'em at and with what? I’m thinking about 320k vbr, is it overkill?

I think 160 is good enough…maybe 192 if you really want to feel that you’ve got it well covered.
More than that is just limiting how many tracks you can store on your pod.

More than that is just limiting how many tracks you can store on your pod.

Well, it’s my phone actually (sound is great from it though - wouldn’t know it’s not a dedicated player), but I won’t be putting anywhere near everything on at once!
Does what you rip 'em with make a (large) difference?
I was just going to let Media Monkey do it, with the LAME plugin (although, they might have changed it since MM3 was released, I still have 2 on this pc), would it make a sizeable difference?

would it make a sizeable difference?

The size difference is simply the ratio of the two rates. (100 Kbps is twice as big as 50 Kbps). Do the math.

[QUOTE=olyteddy;2112726]The size difference is simply the ratio of the two rates. (100 Kbps is twice as big as 50 Kbps). Do the math.[/QUOTE]

I meant a sizeable difference to sound quality :stuck_out_tongue:

Click this for some comparisons

and learn stuff here

and take this on holiday to read

[QUOTE=deanimator;2114191]Click this for some comparisons

and learn stuff here

and take this on holiday to read[/QUOTE]
Thanks, those links are pretty much what I was looking for.
One last thing - if I rip with MediaMonkey, how much different will the resounding file sound vs. using EAC?

if you have original CD’s and your trying to convert them to VBR 192kbps average bit rate MP3’s and aint worried about speed, i highly recommend…

EAC (Exact Audio Copy) + Lame encoder

this will give you top quality sounding MP3’s that in general have a average bit rate if 192kbps (they vary from around 128kbps-320kbps bit rates durring the songs made this way which is as good as your going to get while keeping file size reasonable) … and in general even though it’s usually around 192kbps… sometimes it’s lower and sometimes it’s higher… i dont think i seen it on the music i converted peak (for a average bit rate) any higher than around 224kbps.

but basically using that method it pretty much gives you 320kbps sound quality but at a noticeably smaller file size :wink:

p.s. if your encoding low bit rate (i.e. under 128kbps) stuff though in general i think .OGG is the superior format as it sounds noticeably better than MP3 does at lower bit rates say around 64kbps (give or take a little) … i use 45kbps .OGG on my Sansa E250 (2GB) Digital Audio Player running Rockbox (www.rockbox.org , basically it’s open source firmware which makes it play all kinds of audio formats that the stock firmware that comes with the player cant do etc :wink: , plus it can support pretty much any MicroSD cards out there to where as the stock firmware cant and it works on a fairly wide range of Digital Audio Players to ) and they sound quite good considering how low the bit rate is :wink:

^^^Totally agree. Go with EAC & LAME and use -V 2 --vbr-new %s %d

At the risk of being taken as a pontificating newbie I will puke forth the following opinion:

If storage space isn’t an issue I’d use less compression, but examine carefully how much of an issue storage space really is before you decide on a bitrate to use as your personal “standard”

A) when a hard drive in the 40-100Gb range was considered “big” there was a need to worry about storage space.

B)when mp3 playback devices of 2-4gb were considered “large” there was more of a point, but now that anyone with a harddrive smaller than 300gb is considered “quaint” and portable playback devices of 40-80gig (or larger) are common the purpose of highly compressing audio files is (IMO) rapidly approaching the pointless.

As storage devices get progressively larger (and cheaper) it’s argueable that the days of compressed audio files are numbered, because as storage devices get larger the purpose of compressing files to save space dimishes…

pretty soon, within a few years, IF NOT SOONER… people will be loading Terabit portable devices with uncompressed wav files and within a decade or so (though I wouldn’t be even slightly suprised if it happened sooner) newb’s will be asking “what is an .mp3 file?”

Just like you can find many people who have never SEEN a functioning vinyl record player.

that shiny new terabyte drive a friend of yours just got will hold
~1500 full length CD’s (Presuming they were “full” but as a note most albums don’t come close to filling the 702mb CD)

as 320kBit/sec mp3 files that’s just shy of 6000… not songs,
ALBUMS! (same caveat)

I don’t know about you, but my entire music collection (Vinyl/Casette/CD combined) is only ~800albums

the albums I listen to all the way through (probably only around 35-40albums) plus the average of three tracks per album on the albums I don’t listen to complete could EASILY fit on an 80Gig harddrive as WAV files.

if an 80Gig ipod would play uncompressed wav’s (I have no idea if it will) I’d be left wondering what to do with the other 20gig left on an that 80Gb iPod.

Ok, so let’s review…how much compression do you need?

Variable Bit Rate? Uhhh… why?

Granted I didn’t have the capability to create VBR mp3’s until quite recently (the last six weeks) and after serious reflection I simply
don’t see an advantage to it…

UNLESS your portable device or Car CD/mp3 player chokes on “high” bitrate files the point is questionable.

The choice of playback compression in my mind is related to what will your playback equipment work with.

I know some devices will not playback files with bitrates greater than 160k, if that is your situation you must compress to make your playback equipment happy.

IF you have limited storage volume choose your bitrate accordingly.

BUT if you have an shiny new (and empty) 80gig iPod and only want audio files on it, why bother with higher compression rates?

The investment of time in ripping your music either directly to
mp3’s or as I do it with EAC to wav then converting to mp3 represents a fairly large investment of time.
having to do it all over again if you decide that you want to use less compression is a Royal Pain (ITA).

Trust me I have firsthand knowledge of this, I went from 160k mp3’s
to re-ripping everything after a hardrive failure.
when I did it all over again I did them all as 224k files.

I greatly regret that because I am now doing it all over again as 320k CBR at maximum quality with CRC error detection.

There won’t be a need to do it again.

I hope to save someone the pain (literally) from sitting in your swivel chair that long… again… and again… :slight_smile:


If storage is truly not a problem, I would strongly recommend the use of a lossless codec for archiving / never having to rip all of your CD’s over again. My FLAC archive averages 880kbps - from that archive I can transcode on demand to any codec / bitrate combination I choose.

I use EAC to rip to wav / cue combination and encode the result to a cue embedded FLAC using foobar2000. Foobar2000 is also very useful for tagging and transcoding.