Ripping CDs

I am about to sell off my fairly large CD collection, so I am going to take one last pass through it to make some high-quality rips. Does anyone have advice on what piece of software I should use, what format/settings, or any other tips? Thanks…

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The last time I ripped a CD I used Exact Audio Copy. Its a little more work than simply slipping the CD in the drive and letting ITunes copy it but it does give you more control over the process and if you were concerned about accuracy it gives you that - Link.

EAC. You may want to make sure your optical drive is one of the models that reports information vital to flawless ripping.

Awesome FAQ

I would recommend ripping to FLAC, with logs, and then use a batch MP3 encoder to convert the FLACs to MP3s, assuming you want portable-friendly files.

I use Exact Audio Copy and rip to FLAC for archival purposes.

Edit: hahaha. EAC it is!

DBPowerAmp, for sure. It’s actually a better ripper than EAC, because not only does it do all the drive tricks, but it compares hashes with internet-stored values, so you can get validation external to your drive. (In EAC, if the drive consistently and persistently misreads a bit, it’ll validate fine.)

More importantly, though, if you’re ripping a ton of CDs, metadata entry and smooth workflow are key. DBPowerAmp is great with metadata to the point that it’s nearly twice as fast for me to rip as with the next nearest contender – it pulls metadata from multiple sources, gives you the most common values, and lets you select from any of the sources or manually override. And on the output side, DBPA is very efficient with highly customizable outputs for filenames, formats, and post-processing.

EAC, by constrast, is borderline unusable.

DBPowerAmp costs money, but given how much time you’re going to dedicate to this, it’s so totally worth it. But make sure you buy the expensive version upfront, as the cheap one is crippled in irritating ways and you’ll end up forking out the extra $15 anyway.

(Oh, and you’ll probably want to use FLAC, although you may want Apple Lossless or WMA Lossless if you primarily use Apple or Microsoft devices for playback. Don’t even think about a lossy format, as you’ll be throwing away data for no sensible reason.)

EAC supports external validation in addition to its own error correction. They both use AccurateRip.

So just out of curiosity, shouldn’t someone recognizable as a rather visible computer game developer be a little bit less cavalier about illegal copying of other forms of entertainment media? Or were you planning to sell off some CDs and just coincidentally wanted to know how to rip the other CDs you’re not selling?

How do you guys feel Winamp measures up? I’ve ripped hundreds of CDs and have had zero issues with the results so far. Edit: Answered my own question partially. Winamp can handle FLAC so I guess i"m set if I took on a project on the scale of what Brian Seiler is describing 12 posts down.

On a slight tangent, can someone confirm that FLAC is indeed completely lossless? I keep reading insane rants on a very irritating forum that I occasionally visit about how it’s actually not completely lossless, and that only a <insert ridiculously high sampling rate> WAV file is an accurate reflection of the music. Unless I’m missing something in the FLAC format specs, such a claim maketh no sense.

FLAC is lossless. Using a set of FLAC files and a CUE sheet generated by the ripper, you could create a duplicate of the original CD which would pass a bit by bit comparison.

Uhhh, it sounds like this guy just wants to rip some CDs, not have audiophile-crazy-levels of lossless sound quality. If you can tell the difference in sound quality after 256 kpbs, you either have a sound system that costs as much as a car (which is stupid), or you’re lying.

Audiograbber is easy to use, as it rips, encodes to mp3, and tags from an internet database all with one button press, and is easy as hell to configure. You may have to download an mp3 encoding dll, which I think is called ‘lame.dll’ or something like that. Set to 256kbps and rip away.

I bet you’re a hoot at parties.

I use Foobar2000 + neroAAC. No clue how it stacks up, but I can say it’s easy to use and convenient!

Actually, I’d like to know as well (well, not so much the part about Soren being a developer). I have a copy of Prince of Persia that I bought solely to support the no-DRM “cause”. But I’m not much of a platformer fan so I can’t quite muster the energy to actually play it. I’ve been thinking about giving it to a friend, but if I keep the game installed (and playable since there’s no DRM) wouldn’t that constitute piracy? Isn’t the issue the same with music CD’s?

(FYI, I’m not being snarky, I genuinely would like to know)


krise madsen

Yes and yes.

Do not use Foobar. I used it for a while, and I have some bad rips (overt bursts of static) because of it. It’s unreliable.

I’m sorry but aren’t we talking openly about pirating stuff here? Isn’t that (quite understandably) a big no-no on these forums?


krise madsen

Your “audiophile crazy levels” are what is also known as “the quality you get off a regular CD.” This isn’t some kind of ultra-high-end 24/192 thing.

Besides, there’s no reason not to do FLAC. DBPowerAmp is what I’d recommend for error-free ripping and ease of use, and it’s no harder for it to encode lossless than to MP3, and the disk space issues are irrelevant in this era of terabyte drives.

It seems that Soren is, but nobody else has been. I packed my CDs in a closet years ago and operate solely from my rips, so there is nothing inherently “pirate-y” about ripping CDs.