Computers & Electronics

Dealing with old CD collection in 2020

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  • Aug 13th, 2020 11:26 am
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Dealing with old CD collection in 2020

Found a box of music CDs in storage that I am going through to keep or dispose of:
1. What's the optimal format/bit rate for listening/archiving? no edits, no studio equipment for playback
2. Which app requires minimum effort in ripping scratched CDs and auto naming/foldering
3. What's an economical way in 2020 to access music easily (by tag or by voice) at home and off multiple devices in 2020?
4. Are old CDs considered collectible? if not, I might strip them off the original jewel cases and put them in a vertical bundle. Also, I found many CDs are not recognizable by MusicBrainz, would those justify for storage?

TIA
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Dec 29, 2008
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Windows Media player let's you rip CDs, then just upload them to Google play music dunno if youtube music supports this.

If I'm not mistaken l once uploaded it gets replaced by whatever version google has unless you specify.

I uploaded my entire library a few years ago to play music, haven't really touched it since Spotify.
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JonSnow wrote: I uploaded my entire library a few years ago to play music, haven't really touched it since Spotify.
Same here I used to meticulously manage a huge MP3 collection that I've completely moved on from since Spotify. Only streaming service that's actually worth it imo, especially if you're a hardcore music fan
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LongLiveRFD wrote: Found a box of music CDs in storage that I am going through to keep or dispose of:
1. What's the optimal format/bit rate for listening/archiving? no edits, no studio equipment for playback
2. Which app requires minimum effort in ripping scratched CDs and auto naming/foldering
3. What's an economical way in 2020 to access music easily (by tag or by voice) at home and off multiple devices in 2020?
4. Are old CDs considered collectible? if not, I might strip them off the original jewel cases and put them in a vertical bundle. Also, I found many CDs are not recognizable by MusicBrainz, would those justify for storage?

TIA
I can't justify throwing away my collection...and I can't justify going through the expense and time and effort to organize and store and share. I have them ripped mostly, and loaded half on to my phone, but honestly at $5-$10 a month music streaming is pretty convenient even if it's music you already own, there's new music to explore and enjoy.

As for collectable: Unless it's a rare EP/LP, or import, or autographed...limited release...no. Vinyl's are better for value and collecting just based on rarity. A vinyl version of any CD album would be worth more just based on how many vinyl's produced versus how many CDs.
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JonSnow wrote: Windows Media player let's you rip CDs, then just upload them to Google play music dunno if youtube music supports this.

If I'm not mistaken l once uploaded it gets replaced by whatever version google has unless you specify.

I uploaded my entire library a few years ago to play music, haven't really touched it since Spotify.
Good to know.

The issue is I don't know if something is already streamed unless I feed them into the CDROM. By looking up CD under MusicBrainz I'm few minutes away from having a backup.

By ripping at least I have the future option to decide to abandon or merge with streaming. Still, physical files still help for car stereo or mobile without using data.
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LongLiveRFD wrote:
By ripping at least I have the future option to decide to abandon or merge with streaming. Still, physical files still help for car stereo or mobile without using data.
Nah, fumbling with physical CDs even in a car sounds like we in the stone age. Most cars with CD players will have an aux out or usb. If like my dad's older car which doesn't a cassette adapter actually works great. In my car i actually bought a CD slot phone mount as i never used the cd slot.

Then you just need a cheap mp3 player or old phone. In my dads car i hooked up a Bluetooth car kit and its good enough for him.
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bhrm wrote: As for collectable: Unless it's a rare EP/LP, or import, or autographed...limited release...no. Vinyl's are better for value and collecting just based on rarity. A vinyl version of any CD album would be worth more just based on how many vinyl's produced versus how many CDs.
This.

Do people buy box worth of used CDs locally? I've already thrown away hundreds of good CDs/DVDs that people might want (and already online) and not sure I should do the same this time.
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JonSnow wrote: Nah, fumbling with physical CDs even in a car sounds like we in the stone age. Most cars with CD players will have an aux out or usb. If like my dad's older car which doesn't a cassette adapter actually works great. In my car i actually bought a CD slot phone mount as i never used the cd slot.

Then you just need a cheap mp3 player or old phone. In my dads car i hooked up a Bluetooth car kit and its good enough for him.
Yes. If I rip now, there's a chance I could go over these files while stuck in traffic and delete off my phone (AUX/BT) later.

My understanding of streaming is to consume my 4G data.
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For now I'm going with fre:Ac Core Audio AAC encoder with .m4a extension and mp4 file format. If any better configs pls advise.
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LongLiveRFD wrote: This.

Do people buy box worth of used CDs locally? I've already thrown away hundreds of good CDs/DVDs that people might want (and already online) and not sure I should do the same this time.
Unless it's something special or really really cheap you're going to have a hard time getting rid of it. You can try craiglist, facebook marketplace or kijiji etc. Or you can donate to your local library! Everyone can enjoy!
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For my small CD collection, I used iTune to rip them in the past to listen on an iPod and a Windows PC.

Now, where are my iTune files? Don't ask me.
I don't care as I have an online music subscription.
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I thought all the cool kids used Exact Audio Copy.

When I used Windows, I think I just used foobar2000 to rip.

And if you want to archive the files, rip them to FLAC.
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EAC is like running Windows 9x on modern hardware. CueRipper (part of CueTools) is where it's at. EAC is good as a secondary ripper, though, since it has a "never give up" attitude.

But yes, rip your CDs using a secure ripper. Rip to a lossless format like FLAC.

I buy used CDs from thrift stores all the time. Sure, I collect them, although most people go with the trend and think vinyl is really cool. For sure, vinyl is more fun in that it is a bigger package, and nicer to look at. But unless you're willing to spend more money on a quality pressing and on hardware, it's not going to sound better than a CD.

CDs without the artwork (and possibly without the case) is next to worthless, pretty much the same with vinyl. In general, though, since people are giving CDs away, I tend not to pay more than a few dollars for them. It has to be something pretty specific for me to pay more than $10 for.
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LongLiveRFD wrote: This.

Do people buy box worth of used CDs locally? I've already thrown away hundreds of good CDs/DVDs that people might want (and already online) and not sure I should do the same this time.
Back in the day, my friends and I used to go to a local Flea Market to buy and sell ours. They didn't give much but it was better than nothing. Worth looking into, although who knows if those places are still open with covid.
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1. FLAC. It's lossless so you can re-encode to something else from it if you need to.
2. dBpoweramp would probably be the least effort
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find a young nephew or niece and have them do it for you, usually young kids have a lot of free time and are good with computers. when i was young i used to rip audio files off of CDs for my uncle and he would give me some money for it, not a lot of money but when your unemployed teen, any money is better than none and you get experience
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If the music is good: WAV (full format uncompressed lossless - and if you want to want to recreate a CD). Ripped my collection to WAV and playing it through my computer using an Asus Xonar Essence ST (and also STX) card with various Burson OpAmps.

Surprisingly, a lot of rock albums only take up less than half the stated capacity of a CD (700MB).

Do have at least 2 copies of your library though. Mine occupy 700 GB).
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LongLiveRFD wrote: My understanding of streaming is to consume my 4G data.
One of the main selling points of Spotify premium is it lets you download whatever you want to your device to play offline. I have a couple hundred albums downloaded to my phone right now that I can just play through bluetooth in the car or my portable speaker when we're biking/hiking without using any data. The vast majority of commercially released music is available so chances are if you own it on CD, it's already on Spotify saving you the time and hassle of manually ripping CD's
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LongLiveRFD wrote: Found a box of music CDs in storage that I am going through to keep or dispose of:
1. What's the optimal format/bit rate for listening/archiving? no edits, no studio equipment for playback
2. Which app requires minimum effort in ripping scratched CDs and auto naming/foldering
3. What's an economical way in 2020 to access music easily (by tag or by voice) at home and off multiple devices in 2020?
4. Are old CDs considered collectible? if not, I might strip them off the original jewel cases and put them in a vertical bundle. Also, I found many CDs are not recognizable by MusicBrainz, would those justify for storage?

TIA
I have close to 900 music CDs that I archived to computer (with mulitple back-ups) in FLAC format using Exact Audio Copy. I edited the album art work and file tags with MP3tag. I couldn't bear to throw them out but I did recycle the jewel boxes and kept the CDs in old blank CD towers and the inserts in shoeboxes. I don't know what the future holds for my CDs, but they're packed away now and take up less space. The ripped files sound great and to my ears, sound identical to the original CDs.
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Sorcerer wrote: The ripped files sound great and to my ears, sound identical to the original CDs.
They should sound if not better. There's an alleged problem called jitter. Supposedly the process of how data is read from the CD or other optical media isn't smooth and even, but rather clumpy and erratic. This could depend on the CD's (or other optical media) condition, the laser, and alignment of the ODD, etc. I've noticed that ripped lossless music appears to be a lot easier to listen to than music through a higher-end CD player(*), with the music stored and read off a HDD and process through a good DAC. That's one reason why electronic distribution of audiophile music (CD format, 44.1 KHz/16 bit, isn't popular as audiophiles prefer 96KHz/24-bit, or even 192KHz/24 bit, or DSD used in SACD of up to 5.6 GHz) has taken off while audiophile formats such as SACD, DVD-A and BD-A have languished if are not virtually dead.

(*) - I'm not the type that spends lavish amounts on discrete CD transports and DACs. Make do with used equipment and whatever I already have, upgraded.
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