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'Best' ripping format for CDs

Discussion in 'audio' started by ExtremePie, Jun 23, 2012.

  1. ExtremePie

    ExtremePie pfm Member

    Hi all,

    please no subjective opinions about which format is here to stay or discussions about Apple vs PC. I just want to know which lossless format is best in terms of audio quality and easiest from a perspective of trying to get into streaming in a relatively painless way.
    FLAC? WAV? etc.
    What to do and what software to achieve the rip?
    Cheers
     
  2. Stunsworth

    Stunsworth pfm Member

    Why would lossless formats sound different from one another? Isn't the point of a format being lossless that it'll give the same output as any other?

    For what it's worth I rip to Apple lossless.
     
  3. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    I can't see any argument against Apple Lossless as it's lossless, public domain and will play on just about anything. Flac is less compatible as it can't be used on iTunes, iPhones, iPads etc, which amount to the vast amount of players out there. As an example I had to re-rip / reorganise nothing at all to add a Squeezebox to my Apple based system.
     
  4. Purité Audio

    Purité Audio Trade: Purite Audio

    FLAC unless you are using Apple then AIFF,
    Keith.
     
  5. graham-r

    graham-r pfm Member

    Flac, non-proprietary and always will be. Not many people play flac's on a portable player due to available disc space, mp3 is good enough for those.

    Edit: wasn't this done to death in another thread quite recently ?
     
  6. Robert

    Robert Tapehead

    Seconded.
     
  7. Purité Audio

    Purité Audio Trade: Purite Audio

    Apple is fine if you continue to use an Apple based system, if you migrate to something else then the ITunes music folder architecture can be problematic.
    FLAC is self contained,
    Keith.
     
  8. Robert

    Robert Tapehead

    Ultimately it shouldn't be a major issue, just potentially a time issue.
    So long as the file is lossless you can convert without further loss.
     
  9. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    No idea why, it's organised exactly how I'd do it myself if I were doing it manually:

    Music/ArtistName/AlbumTitle/SongFileName.ext

    Any various artist compilation albums are:

    Music/Compilations/AlbumTitle/SongFileName.ext

    As logical as a remarkably logical thing IMO.
     
  10. Nic Robinson

    Nic Robinson Moderator

    Flac unless Apple based as above. It's an irrelevant argument as converting is easy. I use EAC which is dead simple.
     
  11. keith1962

    keith1962 pfm Member

    There is a thread on the Naim Forum at present about an event at Signals recently where they did dems of the new psu regulators. As part of the event they used the new NDS and did a dem to show that wav sounds better than flac. If they are both lossless how can that be???
     
  12. ultrawomble

    ultrawomble Sith Lord

    It's broken?
     
  13. Nic Robinson

    Nic Robinson Moderator

    Was the dem blind?
     
  14. Stunsworth

    Stunsworth pfm Member

    The argument may well be that the Flac takes processing power to 'unzip' during playback, but I would have thought that was a trivial thing to do given the power of modern processors.
     
  15. graham-r

    graham-r pfm Member

    The processing power required is miniscule, especially if the server does it and not the player.
     
  16. keith1962

    keith1962 pfm Member

    No not a blind dem I don't think which could be a factor. Take a look at the thread over there. I am puzzled by it but as you say if it is not blind that could be a factor, but then why choose wav to be better rather than alac or some other?
     
  17. hammeredklavier

    hammeredklavier owner of two very cheap hi-fis

    I hate the Apple system, one of the main reasons I bought a Sony Walkman instead of an iWotnot. Trying to navigate your files the iWay is just a pain.

    I can't believe Apple's iGizmos won't play FLAC, that's pretty astonishing. Most lossless downloads are FLAC.
     
  18. hammeredklavier

    hammeredklavier owner of two very cheap hi-fis

    Yeah but if you're into classical it's hellish! It tries organising all your bloody files by composer or performer or whatever, instead of just playing the files in order of filename in a folder. Hate it! :mad:
     
  19. Purité Audio

    Purité Audio Trade: Purite Audio

    Problems can arise when you move from ITunes, you can manually embed artwork etc, but if you don't have existing ties,then FLAC.
    Keith.
     
  20. AndyU

    AndyU pfm Member

    Disadvantage of using iTunes to rip (whether to apple lossless or anything else) is that the artwork is "hidden" inside iTunes. If you think you might move away from iTunes in the future, or want to use your rips outside iTunes, consider using dBpoweramp to rip. It rips at least as well as iTunes, but in addition correctly and more usefully tags your rips and folders with artwork, lets you get more tags and control the directory structure of your library, verifies the accuracy of your rip against a database and has some smart tricks up it's sleeve to rip damaged CDs and ones with hidden tracks. Nothing stopping you using dBpoweramp to rip to ALAC - you still get all the benefits - you can even rip to two formats at once - say ALAC and a useful compressed format. And it converts formats perfectly. Ripping is a lot of work - you need a tool that ensures you don't waste all that effort.
     

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