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rip quality dependent on CD drive and/or rip software?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

OK so this is a bit embarrassing and really shows my non-enginering/techie kinda mind but I just have no idea if sampling rates adn bits are affected by the CD drive or the software when doing a rip. yes i realise in itunes I cna schoose different formats (ALAC, mp3, etc) but is there other software where I can choose higher sample and bitrates for my rip? And does the actual drive make a differnce. My apologies if there is some basic science behind tis that would obviate the answer.

post #2 of 11

iTunes really isn't the best tool to be using to rip your CD's if you are really concerned about getting an clean accurate rip. The best paid ripper is DBPoweramp and there are a few excellent freeware rippers out there (Exact Audio Copy, CueRipper (part of CUETools).

 

Formats fall in to 2 categories

 

Lossy - Information is removed from the music to allow it to become smaller, higher the bitrate better the quality and larger the file. MP3 and AAC are lossy.

 

Lossless - No information is removed from the music, think of it like zipping a file to make it smaller, there is no bitrate to set as it uses as much as it needs to encoded the file perfectly. Downside is that the files are bigger than lossy. ALAC is lossless. Wav is also lossless but there is no compression used on this format so it will be larger than ALAC.

 

Sample rates - if you ripping from CD then leave the sample rate at 44.1khz \ 16bit. you will not gain anything by increasing this, you will only waste space.

 

The drive shouldn't make a difference unless you brought it 5+ years ago. Using a proper secure ripping program will save you from pulling your hair out later on when you find clicks pops and other glitches in your music that may happen using iTunes.


Edited by A_Man_Eating_Duck - 1/7/14 at 1:56am
post #3 of 11

As CD format is 16-bit/44.1kHz, you get a CD copied 1:1 by using equal resolution/samplerate in ripping process.

 

'Quality' isn't allways 100% because of possible errors in CD (long long ago I red an article, handling this matter, state that there can be 10's of thousands errors in one CD ... AFAIK, the error correction system found in CD drives intend for computer use is different from the ones found in genuine CD players ... ).

 

Remember also that there are CD's which are equalized by the ISO908 standard ... A genuine CD played restores the EQ automatically but CD drives used in computers can't do it so, you need to use software tools for that correction. If you need tools for this task, visit/google Hydrogenaudio & ISO908 to find some of those.

post #4 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by jiiteepee View Post
 

'Quality' isn't allways 100% because of possible errors in CD (long long ago I red an article, handling this matter, state that there can be 10's of thousands errors in one CD ... AFAIK, the error correction system found in CD drives intend for computer use is different from the ones found in genuine CD players ... ).

If you are using a ripper that supports AccurateRip you're comparing your rips against other people rips so you can be certain that the rip is clean and error free because the checksums match.

post #5 of 11
I've been using iTunes to rip CDs into AIFF 44.1/16 files. I have explored XLD recently as an option to rip to FLAC specifically for playback on my AK100. My question is this: is there any real value in using XLD over iTunes, other than reduction of file size (which doesn't concern me at this stage)?
I've ripped the same. CD with both tools and listened to the resulting files and cannot detect any difference between the two.
post #6 of 11
The Problem with iTunes is that it won't tell you if there has been any problems ripping the CD. XLD will compare your rip with other people rips (AccurateRip) and tell you if the rip is ok and also saves a ripping log.

If the CDs you are ripping are perfect then there won't be any difference between iTunes and XLD.

FLAC has a much better robustness than AIFF. It can detect errors down to the frame (fraction of a second), better tagging support, Fast to decode (faster than MP3) and you just get the added bonus of saving hard drive space. The only reason to use WAV or AIFF is if the player only supports those lossless formats.
Edited by A_Man_Eating_Duck - 3/26/14 at 12:09pm
post #7 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by A_Man_Eating_Duck View Post

The Problem with iTunes is that it won't tell you if there has been any problems ripping the CD. XLD will compare your rip with other people rips (AccurateRip) and tell you if the rip is ok and also saves a ripping log.

If the CDs you are ripping are perfect then there won't be any difference between iTunes and XLD.

FLAC has a much better robustness than AIFF. It can detect errors down to the frame (fraction of a second), better tagging support, Fast to decode (faster than MP3) and you just get the added bonus of saving hard drive space. The only reason to use WAV or AIFF is if the player only supports those lossless formats.

 

Thank you Ducky. ;-)

My old (and somewhat beat-up) CD collection has already been ripped to lossless AIFF, so my question was more about choosing a best practice going forward. IE: it will be my approach to new CDs in immaculate condition.

 

As I stated previously, the hard drive space issue is irrelevant to me, since I have many terrabytes to spare. In fact, I may opt to store both AIFF and FLAC rips of many recordings, just so I can load AIFF to Apple devices, and FLAC to my A&K player.  I have to say, though, that there may soon come a day when I give up on my iPods since I can't get the same luscious sound out of any of those compared to my AK100, even using a LOD + amp on the iPod. The iPod sound just feels generally "lifeless" to me now.

post #8 of 11
Even new CDs still have a chance of imperfection (Watermarks, Pressing problems) so I would still use XLD. You might as well not take a risk and rip it properly the first time round and if there is an error in the rip it should tell you about it.

If your going to go down the 2 libraries route, then go ALAC and FLAC.
Edited by A_Man_Eating_Duck - 3/26/14 at 4:11pm
post #9 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by A_Man_Eating_Duck View Post

If your going to go down the 2 libraries route, then go ALAC and FLAC.

 

 RE the ALAC option: Is this because the file size is significantly less, or are there other reasons?

post #10 of 11
Actually I'll take that back about suggesting ALAC. It seems the ALAC doesn't have internal error detection.
Edited by A_Man_Eating_Duck - 3/27/14 at 12:48am
post #11 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cannikin View Post
 

 

 RE the ALAC option: Is this because the file size is significantly less, or are there other reasons?

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by A_Man_Eating_Duck View Post

Actually I'll take that back about suggesting ALAC. It seems the ALAC doesn't have internal error detection.

Still has much better metadata support, however. I'd recommend ALAC over AIFF for this reason alone, don't think there's any advantage to using AIFF.

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