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Q: Continued: Audio CD collection to compile into a DVD in MP3? ( Answered,   2 Comments )
Subject: Continued: Audio CD collection to compile into a DVD in MP3?
Category: Arts and Entertainment > Music
Asked by: 6ra3-ga
List Price: $150.00
Posted: 12 Aug 2005 17:34 PDT
Expires: 11 Sep 2005 17:34 PDT
Question ID: 555152

I have a project to convert a collection of roughly 400 to 500 Music
CDs to MP3 format and I would likely store them temporarilly on the
hard disk till I drop them into a DVD and/or CD's based on where I'm
going to need them and what media those devices support.

The project is hectic in terms of organizing the content I shall be
working on and I would like to get advice on how to approach this

My priorities:

1. Automation.
2. Categorization possibly based on the online databases for the digitized music.
3. Ability for a novice to manage such a project with the right commercial tools.
4. Effort optimization.

What I need is the following:

a. Software recommendation based on my needs that are clarified or
will be clarified via the clarification section.  Please be specific
in what software will be applicable and the price and if a
downloadable version is available and possibly a copy is available on
ebay or similar site as new as can be.. this is optional.

b. Steps described in detail of how I would go abount approaching my
workload and organization recommendations and how each recommendation
is carried out to assure goal achievement.

c. In terms of usage after the digitization process is completed, what
should I use in software to easy searching and play list selection.

d. What else should I know or can benefit from out of your experience
with these things would be appreciated. I will also have questions
that may come up later which you're not obligated to answer, but I
would appreciate it and if it's substantial I'll take care of things
in the tip area. :-)

I have recently asked about the technology and software to get a
general idea, but I didn't expect the project to involve this number
of CD's.


Request for Question Clarification by landog-ga on 12 Aug 2005 17:42 PDT
Before I delve into the ins & outs of this mighty task - keep in mind
that Automation is not goign to really help out here - for the simple
reason that 'ripping' audio for a complete CD will take only a few
minutes (on a modern PC), but YOU will need to MANUALLY change the
audio CDS each time you complete a 'rip'. No software will take out
the audio CD from your CD-ROM/ DVD-ROM tray and insert a new one. YOU
(or designated cd-changing-person) will have to do this.

Clarification of Question by 6ra3-ga on 12 Aug 2005 18:18 PDT

That is clear.

I do not want to:

1. Worry about where files are stored and if they have been done without failure.

2. Worry about the CD and track identification process running
correctly on its own without me smacking it around a little, socially
speaking, to get it to wake up and bring the information from the

3. Worry about file duplicates or settings of sampling rate and file
formats and indexing required to be set frequently.. I would like to
set up ones and forget the settings and worry about swapping CDs in
and out and that's it.

Hope this helps.

Subject: Re: Continued: Audio CD collection to compile into a DVD in MP3?
Answered By: landog-ga on 12 Aug 2005 21:29 PDT
Hi Again!
I'm glad your making the leap! I am looking forward to walking you
through this task.
Let's start off with the following:

a. Ripping software: 
"Audiograbber is a beautiful piece of software that grabs digital
audio from cd's. It copies the audio digitally-not through the
soundcard-which enables you to make perfect copies of the originals.
It can even perform a test to see that the copies really are perfect.
Audiograbber can also automatically normalize the music, delete
silence from the start and/or end of tracks, and send them to a
variety or external MP3 encoders, such as Fraunhofers L3enc, or even
use some MP3/WMA encoders internally for automatic creation of MP3's.
Audiograbber can download and upload disc info from freedb, an
Internet compact disc database. You can even record your vinyl LP's or
cassette tapes with Audiograbber and make wav's or MP3's of them.
There are a lot more functions in Audiograbber, but to put it simply:
Audiograbber has the most features one can wish from such a program! "

Price: free.

All settings can be 
Burning Software:
Ahead's Nero 6:
"Nero's products combine user-friendliness, award-winning quality and fair prices
Nero 6 Reloaded: The Ultimate All-In-One Digital Media Solution
Whether you?re an Expert or Standard user, Nero 6 Reloaded makes your
digital media projects a breeze to complete. Enhance your creative and
technical skills with multiple tools to take you beyond the ordinary
rip & burn."
Price: 60usd

b. All of the software mentioned have well documented FAQs & Guides.
But if need be I will walk you through, step by step on any specific
issues you may have after you get familiar with the software.

c. Winamp - will create your playlists and recognize your tracks.

d. In a nutshell - either ripping 2 CDs or 500 CDs - the method
remains the same. It will take a while for 100's of audio CDs, but is
very much doable.

Let me know what you think after looking at the software and then we
can go through the minute details when you are ready to start. If for
some reason you don;' like these software choices (which I use on a
very regular basis) - we can look at other options. No problem at all.


Clarification of Answer by landog-ga on 13 Aug 2005 08:56 PDT
A simple 1-2-3 guide for Audiograbber:

Each CD you rip will require these steps:
1. Open up the Audiograbber software.
2. Insert your audio CD into your CD drive. Wait a few moments for
your computer to recognize the CD. Click on the 'Refresh' Icon.
3. You will now see all the tracks that are on the Audio Cd in Audiograbber. 
4. Make sure you are connected to the internet. 
5. Click on the 'Freedb' Icon and wait a few seconds while the data is
pulled from the internet and the tracks and album are now recognized
and named correctly.

One time settings (global settings for all CDs):
1. Click on the 'Settings' Icon. Browse to where you are planning to
store all the ripped albums. Check the 'Album as directory' checkbox.
This makes sure all the files of the specific album are stored under a
folder titled the same as the album.
2. Click on OK
3. Makes sure the checkbox under the MP3 icon is checked. Click on
this MP3 icon. Choose under the 'Mode' pulldown menu 192 kBit/s. This
makes sure all tracks will sound really nice. If you want you can play
around with the various bit rates to see what gives you the best file
size / quality ratio. If it sounds good to you - that's the most
important factor.
4. Click on OK.

All the other settings can be left as they are. But feel free to play
around or ask if you need info on more advanced settings.

Now you can start. Click on the 'Grab' Icon and let the program do its
job. After a few minutes you will find all the MP3 tracks in the
folder (you chose above in step 1).

Let me know if it goes OK.


Request for Answer Clarification by 6ra3-ga on 13 Aug 2005 11:16 PDT

Here's what happened with my tests of Nero and WinAmp.  I inserted a
CD titled "Blue Guilty" and I didn't notice it attempt getting any
title information from an online source, but WinAmp picked it up and
got the right CD and titles.  I don't know what made Nero fail... It
worked with another CD.

That doesn't make me confortable with Nero unless there's something I
can change in the settings to make it do it right and not ignore it if
it doesn't feel like it.

That's one example of what I don't want a tool to do.


Request for Answer Clarification by 6ra3-ga on 13 Aug 2005 11:30 PDT

I'm also interested in a commercial solution, no free stuff... as you
said spy and adware are an issue and the fact that mp3 technology is
not free doesn't make it logical they're able to provide it for free.

Nero's good, but the glitch I mentioned is an issue and I did find it
for around $20 on ebay.

I'm not interested in movies or pictures, purely focused on Music CDs to MP3.


Clarification of Answer by landog-ga on 13 Aug 2005 12:05 PDT
I was thinking more along the lines of ripping the audio with
Audiograbber. Then burn the MP3 files, which are already named
correctly, with Nero.
Nero is a great app for all burning needs. It may have some issues
with online CD databases, but you really don't need it for that.
Did you give Audiograbber a spin yet?


Request for Answer Clarification by 6ra3-ga on 13 Aug 2005 13:58 PDT

I just tried AudioGrabber.. I like it a lot.  Though, it failed the CD
lookup on freedb that WinAmp did find on Gracenote.

What do you recommend?


Request for Answer Clarification by 6ra3-ga on 13 Aug 2005 14:01 PDT

How does it handle scratched CDs? I'm assuming I'd run into a few.


Request for Answer Clarification by 6ra3-ga on 13 Aug 2005 14:20 PDT
Any idea what are the differences between the Sterio options?


Clarification of Answer by landog-ga on 13 Aug 2005 20:51 PDT
From thr Help file an explaination about the Freedb:
"Freedb is used for retrieving disc title and track names from an
internet database. This means of course that you have to be connected
to internet to use this function. It is a huge database available on
the internet where individuals has submitted their disc data. Programs
like Audiograbber can connect to this database to see if the disc is
found in the database and download various disc information.

Freedb started out as a hobby project a few years ago and was named
CDDB, acronym for Compact Disc DataBase. The whole project was open
source, gratis and released under GPL license. In 1998 or 1999 a
company named Escient somehow took over the project and they have
since then tried to cash in on the original CDDB project. Now in 2001
Escient has changed name to Gracenote (or if they was acquired, I
don't know) but Gracenote now has the rights to the original CDDB
database. Gracenote has also started a slightly improved CDDB version
named CDDB2 which is far from free or open source and Gracenote now
tries to get developers like myself to sign a contract to use their
CDDB2 database. They plan to stop the old CDDB database completely but
they still keep it up for programmers who have signed up to use CDDB2.

I do not like their contract at all, it is far too complicated and
restrictive, and I know that there are many persons who don't like
that this whole project where individuals has built up the database
has now become commercial. Fortunately this project was originally an
open source project so in 1999 a similar service named freedb started.
Audiograbber 1.80 has now been modified to connect to
instead of CDDB and since Gracenote has registered CDDB as their
trademark Audiograbber has been modified to mention freedb on all
places where it previously used CDDB.

Freedb does not have as many discs in their database as CDDB but now
when more and more programs connects to freedb it is just a matter of
time before that database also gets filled with a lot of discs. So, if
you have some discs that are not found in freedb then please submit
them so other users can find them on freedb in the future.

This freedb database is hosted on various servers around the world, so
select one that is close to you. By pressing the "Get list" button,
your computer will try to fetch the current list directly from the
internet. If this fails for some reason (30 seconds timeout)
Audiograbber will let you choose from the latest known list.

There are two ways to connect to the freedb server: Direct TCP/IP
(also called CDDBP) and through the HTTP protocol. Both methods are
about equally fast and generate the same result, so it really doesn't
matter which you choose. If you are accessing internet from behind a
firewall and must use proxy you will however need to use the HTTP
protocol. It is not possible to use proxys under direct TCP/IP.
Not all servers accepts HTTP transfers though. You can check the list
(from "Get list") and check the HTTP-path to see if HTTP is supported.

If your proxy server needs a username and a password you will have to
enter that manually in the audiograbber.ini file. Simply type these
two line in audiograbber.ini:
and replace jackie hacker with your own username and password.

Audiograbber needs to send an e-mail address to the freedb server when
asking for data so you will have to state your e-mail address (or at
least something that looks as an e-mail address!)

AutoQuery freedb if a new disc is not recognized
If this option is selected and the disc is not found in Audiograbbers
database or cdplayer.ini then Audiograbber will look up the disc in
the freedb database on internet automatically. Audiograbber will only
try once per disc, ie if the disc is not found in the freedb database
then Audiograbber will remember that it has already asked about that
disc and not ask again. It is recommended that you also check the
"Autosave freedb queries" box.

Autosave freedb queries
If this option is selected then your successful disc queries from
freedb will be saved in the database and cdplayer.ini automatically.
(cdplayer.ini only if you have selected to use cdplayer.ini under
General Settings, misc tab).

Path to local freedb database
It is possible to go to and download the whole
disc database and store it on your local computer. This way you will
not have to go online to find most of the discs. If you use a local
database then Audiograbber will first look for the disc info in its
own database file discs.txt and if not found there it will look in
cdplayer.ini. If still not found it will automatically look in the
local freedb database. You will not need to press the penguin button
to get the tracknames from the local database.

Discs found in the local freedb database will not be automatically
saved in your discs.txt even if you have selected to "Autosave freedb
queries", you will need to press the "Store disc in database now" on
the CD menu to save disc info from a local freedb database.

If you decide to download the local freedb database then make sure you
get the zip file with the database in Windows format. Audiograbber can
use a local freedb database regardless if it is in Windows or Unix
format but the Unix database has one file for each database entry and
Windows is not so good at handling 200,000 files or more.

There is no checkbox to turn off the local freedb database as you can
see. If you decide to not use a local freedb database anymore then
press the Browse button and empty the text field with the directory
name on top of the "Browse for database" window and press OK.

Audiograbber can also Submit (upload) disc info to freedb. This was
new in version 1.50 of Audiograbber.

The homepage for the original CDDB?, Escient® and Gracenote is"

Clarification of Answer by landog-ga on 13 Aug 2005 20:52 PDT
Onr topic of scratches:

"If your CD-ROM drive can't read digital audio or if the disc is so
scratched that digital reading fails then you will have to use Analog
sampling instead of digital reading (ripping). Some people like to say
analog ripping but I don't like that expression. Analog sampling is a
more appropriate expression.

When you sample analog you will lose quality twice: First when the
CD-ROM drive converts the digital data to an analog signal for
transport to the soundcard. Second when this signal is reconverted
back to digital data by the soundcard. However, if your CD-ROM drive
has a digital out and your soundcard has a digital in, consider
yourself lucky, as this conversion becomes unnecessary. In this case
quality loss should be minimal or nonexistent. Nonetheless, white
noise (hiss) can be added to the track due to processing in the
soundcard. With a decent soundcard though, this should be minimal.

In either case your CD-ROM drive has to be connected to the soundcard
via a thin little wire that goes from the rear of the CD-ROM drive to
the soundcard. Some soundcards have more than one socket to connect
this wire. If this is the case make sure it is connected to the CD-ROM
socket. (If this wire for example is connected to a TV input on the
soundcard then normal playback from the CD will work but Audiograbber
will not use the TV input and no sound will be sampled).

For best results with analog sampling try to set the input volume to a
level so the peak level of the sampled file ends up at around 98%. If
you have told Audiograbber to set the input level to a specific value
then Audiograbber will also choose the CD-ROM drive as input source.
If you tell Audiograbber not to change the input volume then the
currently selected input source will not be changed either. You can
manually start the mixer control to check this by double clicking on
the speaker icon in the system tray (or by starting the program
sndvol32.exe). When the mixer program start it shows the output
settings for the soundcard instead of the input (recording) settings.
You will have to go to "options", "properties" and select "recording"
under "adjust volume for" to see the input settings."

Clarification of Answer by landog-ga on 13 Aug 2005 21:55 PDT
Different stereo modes

A common question is what the different stereo modes is used for in MP3 files.

·	Joint Stereo: Joint Stereo shares certain bits between high
frequency left and right channels. This improves compression
efficiency at a slight loss of stereo separation. Lower frequencies
are treated as normal stereo. Use Joint Stereo to obtain the best
overall quality at mid-to-lower bit rates. < 224 Kbit.

·	Stereo: Stereo includes two independent channels. The total bit rate
remains constant, but the split between the channels can vary. The
Encoder uses this flexibility to improve quality by allocating more
bits to the channel with the more dynamic signal. Use the Stereo
setting for best quality stereo audio at higher bit rates.

·	Dual Stereo: Dual Stereo includes two completely independent
channels (left/right), each with half the total bit rate. In effect,
it is two mono files packed into a single file. Dual is generally used
for multi-lingual audio programs.

The higher bitrate the larger file and better sound quality. 128 Kbit
is MP3 standard and 64 Kbit is WMA standard. 128 Kbit is the same as
16000 bytes (128000 / 8). That is 16 Kbytes per second or just a
little bit less than one MB per minute of music. That is equal to a
compression ratio of 1:11.025. 128 Kbit is usually referred to as cd
quality. That might be true for most songs but some songs needs higher
bitrates to sound perfect. Use headphones to listen for artifacts in
the MP3 or WMA files.

Another comment on CDs that are not found in the Freedb - you can
manually input the correct info in the program.

Request for Answer Clarification by 6ra3-ga on 14 Aug 2005 14:52 PDT

Thank you very much for the clarification.  I'm comfortable with using
AudioGrabber for the ripping now.  Is there a way to 'import' from a
third application that uses gracenote when a CD is not found on

Also, in WinAmp the sequence of songs played doesn't follow the
information in the 'Track Number' field where the track number is
stored.. it has an impact on tracks that are usually created via a DJ
that's working at moving between some of the tracks without you
noticing.  Is there a setting to make the play list follow the 'Track
Number' field order?

So, now I'm ok with AudioGrabber, now for Nero.  Is it the most
suitable that you know of in terms of burning MP3 on CD's and DVD's?

By the way, how do I disable the Windows auto popup that comes up when
I insert a CD into the drive? :-)

Thanks a whole lot!


Clarification of Answer by landog-ga on 15 Aug 2005 03:25 PDT

It is theoretically possible to use another utility that uses CDDB2's
database and maybe 'save' the information into a file (look in
Audiograbber's help for 'database' to see which text files need to be

To see you don't have a 'connection' type problem to the freedb database:
Check on if your album is in the database.
Also check here:

An interesting utility that you can run on folders that contain
un-named ripped MP3 files that I have just tested and worked for me
(it didnt find the Album on Freedb, but it just asked me the name of
the album and after a second returned with a list of similar albums,
all I had to do was click on the correct name - and then clicked on
'rename' and that was it!):

PsychicMP3 is a straightforward, fast, and easy-to-use MP3 renaming
utility that features the world's first algorithm that retrieves MP3
titles directly from a CDDB database.

Forget about spending time on finding the right filename for your
MP3's ! It takes only one click to PsychicMP3 to rename them all
automatically !

PsychicMP3 calculates a diskid from your MP3 directory, and then
queries FreeDB to get the associated disk information and
ID3Tag/Rename the files. If the disk is not found in FreeDB, the
program will query a search engine to get the right disk information
and then requery FreeDB with the right DiskID.

"in WinAmp the sequence of songs played doesn't follow the
information in the 'Track Number'"

I'm not sure what you mean by "created via a DJ that's working at
moving between some of the tracks without you
When does this happen? Can you go into detail of this problem?

This may be an ID3 tagging issue. Are the tracks numbers at the start
of the file name?

Did you check that the checkmark is checked for "Use ID3v1 Tag" also
click on the 'Edit' button and check the "include track number' in the
MP3 settings in Audiograbber.

"now for Nero.  Is it the most
suitable that you know of in terms of burning MP3 on CD's and DVD's?"-

Nero is absolutely the best CD/DVD burning suite out there. I suggest
you use Nero's Wizard "SmartStart". Just choose to burn a data DVD and
then just drag all your MP3 folders on to the new data DVD. And then
click on Burn. You can also Name the DVD discs as you wish.

The interface is very visual and quite usable. Could be a nice
addition for newbies, but perhaps just adds an extra unnecessary step
for the professionals. The SmartStart is configurable as the colors
can be changed and the task icons in the panel reconfigured. Ability
to reconfigure the task could be useful in corporate usage as only
vital tasks could be presented to the end user. SmartStart also has a
switchable Advance mode that enables more functions to the panel.

"By the way, how do I disable the Windows auto popup that comes up when
I insert a CD into the drive? :-)"

Try the following methods starting with 'Solution 1' for a permanent fix.

Any OS (temporary fix) 
If you hold down the Shift key when inserting the CD, the autorun is
bypassed. (although it's not exactly graceful trying to insert a CD
while holding down keys on the keyboard.)

Windows XP - Solution 1 
Right-click on the drive icon for your CD drive, CD recorder, or DVD
drive, and select Properties.
Choose the AutoPlay tab, and choose the desired action for each type
of CD. For example, choose Music CD, then click Select an action to
perform, then select Take no action.
Windows XP - Solution 2 
Obtain and install TweakUI (part of the PowerToys for Windows XP
package), and then start TweakUI.
Expand the My Computer branch, then the AutoPlay branch, and then select Drives. 
Turn off the checkbox next to each drive letter for which you want
AutoPlay disabled.

Windows 2000/XP 
Run the Registry Editor (REGEDIT.EXE). 
Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\Cdrom. 
Double-click the Autorun value, and type 0 for its value. (If it's not
there, create it by selecting Edit -> New -> DWORD Value, and typing
"Autorun" for its name.)
You may have to log out and then log back in for this change to take effect. 

Note: With this solution, Windows will no longer be notified when you
insert a new CD. To make sure the correct icon and title for the
current CD are displayed in My Computer and Explorer, press F5 to
refresh the window.

To Disable CD autoplay, completely, in Windows XP Pro
1) Click Start, Run and enter GPEDIT.MSC
2) Go to Computer Configuration, Administrative Templates, System.
3) Locate the entry for Turn autoplay off and modify it as you desire


Request for Answer Clarification by 6ra3-ga on 27 Oct 2005 10:43 PDT
Hello Landog,

I had to be away from life a little, back and willing to work and
compansate you for the delay if you're still interested?

You already deserve a five star rating, so can we continue? :-)

Subject: Re: Continued: Audio CD collection to compile into a DVD in MP3?
From: gdog2000-ga on 30 Oct 2005 22:27 PST
Welcome back. I will be pleased to continue. Let me know what further
information you require.
Subject: Re: Continued: Audio CD collection to compile into a DVD in MP3?
From: 6ra3-ga on 31 Oct 2005 01:41 PST

Are you Landog-ga?


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