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Newbie intro/FLAC with wmp...?


Al

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Hi folks, im new here so thought id say hi and post a question to break the ice while im at it.

 

My gear should all appear in my sig, i hope.

 

Anyway, I've got my music on my main hdd, but its all of variable quality, as i went through a long intense period of downloading a few years ago, from not the best of sources...I'll leave it at that.

 

Someone on another forum put me on to EAC and FLAC, and, hearing the sound quality, it made me realise i need to re-rip everything. And i dont even have most the disks. Luckily for me, i have a smaller collection than most!

 

However, id really like to keep WMP11 as my player and library, and still have all the info i want displayed in the library.

 

So, i wonder if there is anyone here with any thoughts and/or experience of using FLAC with WMP...?

 

Long term, id like to have my music on a separate unit, and to remote control it, with a TV as a monitor, or with something like the Logitech Squeezebox remote, but I'm really eager to get the actual files sorted first - plus, i can take my time over this as im operating very much at the entry/budget level, when it comes to finance and expertise.

 

Anyway, i hope the above makes sense, and i look forward to "meeting" you all!

 

Al/

 

Panasonic PXP 42 V20; Panasonic DMP BD35; Sky+ HD Box. [br]Optical out from Asus P7H55-M into AVI ADM 9.1 speakers. [br]\"Music will provide the light you cannot resist\"[br]

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Hi Al and welcome to CA.

 

New is good so enjoy snooping around here.

 

I use WMP a little, to me it's pretty bare bones. For sure, it works. You might also look at using Winamp which rips FLAC directly. I prefer Winamp over Windows Media Player myself. But, you might really be after using Exact Audio Copy. I started out fiddling with every player I could get my hands on. Personally, I don't see huge differences in the Windows players, I settled on Winamp because it's simple and has some nice features. I started out ripping WAVs and now do FLAC to save space. I think both Winamp and WMP both use a similar folder structure per album so you can import from one to the other easily. I think I did that at least. Know that's not what you wanted to hear, but just sharing where I ended up for reference sake.

 

Main system is Mac/iTunes/AIFF but I use both.

 

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Nope. Not waht i wanted to hear at all LOL!

 

Seriously, many thnaks for the reponse. Tell me, have you ever compared FLACs encoded by Winamp with FLACs encoded with EAC, and did you notice any significant diference...?

 

I tried winamp and foobar both very briefly (maybe i should give them another shot, but its frustrating that you have to use them for a while to really know them), and media monkey even more briefly - it had a number of irritating features.

 

Just for interest/consideration, what do you really like about winamp...?

 

Now, I've managed to get EAC to jsut name the songs with, er, the song name, as opposed to, say, "Housten R.E.M. Accelerate R.E.M.", or somesuch, but I'd really like it if it would display the track in the Library with the fields available in wmp, if that makes sense...? I might have to forget some of the fields, but as long as i have the band, song and album/ep/single covered, the rest (duration, bit rate, size) is all icing on the cake.

 

One other thing tho - a song might feature another artist, but i might want it to come up in wmp as, say, johnny cash, while still ackowledging the other artist somehow. For example, Cash's ...Troubled Water cover, featuring Fiona Apple.

 

If people think i should simplify my requirements, do say. Likewise, if anything isnt clear, grill me to your hearts content, but as im a bit new to all this, you may need to make your queries very specific/clear in order to get the answer you seek.

 

 

 

Panasonic PXP 42 V20; Panasonic DMP BD35; Sky+ HD Box. [br]Optical out from Asus P7H55-M into AVI ADM 9.1 speakers. [br]\"Music will provide the light you cannot resist\"[br]

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Thanks, i look forward to reading your thoughts.

 

Panasonic PXP 42 V20; Panasonic DMP BD35; Sky+ HD Box. [br]Optical out from Asus P7H55-M into AVI ADM 9.1 speakers. [br]\"Music will provide the light you cannot resist\"[br]

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Alright Al - Let's get into the details. I'll first state that I'm not a fan of what you want to do, but that may not mean much. I've narrowed down my likes to a small number of bit perfect apps and mainly the Mac OS X platform.

 

Anyway, using flac with windows media player is kind of unnatural. I'm not a fan of getting apps to do something they don't natively do. Open source and plugins and addons are a totally different ballgame compared to flac on wmp. If you do get flac to work through wmp you will run into issues when there is an update to wmp. Are you willing to be without your music collection while the software that allows flac in wmp is fixed? I've been down the road of heavily hacked applications and made them do just about everything imaginable. Then one day a friend of mine who could barely use a computer said, "The more you mess with them the more s&*# goes wrong." After fighting that statement for a while I am fully on board with it. So, long story short I suggest trying to work your existing needs in with an application that most closely matches them. In this case it sounds like you've somewhat settled on Windows Media Player. This is totally cool with me even though I'd steer clear of the app. Since you want the lossless compression that flac would afford you, but flac doesn't play with wmp, I suggest switching to the wma lossless format. This is what MusicGiants uses for their HD and SuperHD 24/88.2 downloads. The sound is very good.

 

Let me know what you think about using wmp with wma. If this brought up more questions than answers that fine as well. Fire away :-)

 

Founder of Audiophile Style

UPDATED: My Audio Systems -> https://audiophile.style/system

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Many thanks Chris.

 

I keep trying to fight the idea that the more you mess the more goes wrong too, and it could be argued over, but for the purposes of this discussion I see youre point, and it may well apply in many more ways.

 

I thought it may be as simple as making FLAC tags speak fluently to WMP, but you seem to suggest it isnt that simple - as do those on other forums who do it, but use separate tagging appliccations. So thats an application for ripping, one for tagging, and another for library/playback duties. Thats too many stages for me, I think.

 

I would consider the Apple route - this would give me a natively supported lossless format to work with afterall - but I do'nt want to invest in a new pc yet, and I've not really got much room for another music based unit. Nevertheless, a mac or some separate music dedicated unit that could be remote controled, with a decent visual interface will be on the cards in about a year/18 months I think. I'd just like to spend a while finalising my format, library and playlists on my PC first. All that may seem a little confused/contradictory, but I hope you get my drift.

 

 

OK. So to work with an application that likes FLAC, or to use an application that agrees with whatever file format I choose seems to be the way forward - I had hoped you would'nt say that, but I'll take it like a man lol! A man who apparently uses "lol" on internet forums, but a man nonetheless.

 

That sparks two ideas in me - winamp with FLAC, or WMP with MP3s ripped with EAC (I've heard the latter briefly, and they were revelatory compared to WMP MP3s - I'm not even sure I could tell the difference between them and FLAC in a blind test with my own system).

 

So, I'd really need to establish whether winamp rips FLAC aswell as EAC (thus far I'm given to doubt it, but have'nt tried it), and whether MP3s from EAC would be of sufficient quality for my ears, having also sampled FLAC. I favour the latter option as I could still use wmp which I'm familiar with, but I'd love to hear any opinions you or hanyone else has...

 

 

 

Panasonic PXP 42 V20; Panasonic DMP BD35; Sky+ HD Box. [br]Optical out from Asus P7H55-M into AVI ADM 9.1 speakers. [br]\"Music will provide the light you cannot resist\"[br]

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I could download itunes and use Apple Lossless for now. That way I'd have a ripper, library and player in one, and a lossless archive, which could be turned into FLAC or MP3 in the future, tho i admit that the MP3/EAC idea still appeals most to me, as long as I can get the best quality MP3s.

 

I'd like to get all this right now as I do'nt want to realise down the line that FLAC would have been simple all along, but then thats assuming I have'nt missed anyting obvious. Or i could jsut be less fussy about my tagging requirements, as it is that which is giving me the headache, rather than making formats work in players.

 

Anyway, I feel the more I go on, the more I risk clouding the issue, so I'll await further replies.

 

Panasonic PXP 42 V20; Panasonic DMP BD35; Sky+ HD Box. [br]Optical out from Asus P7H55-M into AVI ADM 9.1 speakers. [br]\"Music will provide the light you cannot resist\"[br]

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Hey Al - Have you tried iTunes and ALAC? I really suggest you give it a shot. Apple is wonderful at designing interfaces. if you use it to its full potential you just may like it. I never thought I would, but after fighting it for the longest time I am addicted to it on my Mac.

 

Plus, if you ever get a Mac down the road you are all set.

 

Founder of Audiophile Style

UPDATED: My Audio Systems -> https://audiophile.style/system

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I may aswell download it and give it a shot, compare t with the FLACs i have. Is ALAC jsut Apple Lossless...?

 

Panasonic PXP 42 V20; Panasonic DMP BD35; Sky+ HD Box. [br]Optical out from Asus P7H55-M into AVI ADM 9.1 speakers. [br]\"Music will provide the light you cannot resist\"[br]

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When you know its an acronym it all makes sense lol!

 

Thaks for the link - i was jsut about to go there as it happens.

 

Its 3:20AM here, so I'll bid you all goodnight.

 

I'll check back tommorrow.

 

Panasonic PXP 42 V20; Panasonic DMP BD35; Sky+ HD Box. [br]Optical out from Asus P7H55-M into AVI ADM 9.1 speakers. [br]\"Music will provide the light you cannot resist\"[br]

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i have actually got all the details covered in wmp11 for a total of one, yes, 1 song. not sure how i fluked it tho. Any EAC experts here...?

 

Panasonic PXP 42 V20; Panasonic DMP BD35; Sky+ HD Box. [br]Optical out from Asus P7H55-M into AVI ADM 9.1 speakers. [br]\"Music will provide the light you cannot resist\"[br]

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I'm kinda coming from where Chris mentioned the add-ins, add-ons and whatknots. You start out reading this feeds that which converts this into them and at the end ... I was beat into submission. Winamp ripping FLAC. I'm not saying it's the best, but it's easy and ok. It's orderly and if it can't find the artwork you can paste whatever you like in there. Some guys I know that run higher end Win systems like it, so that works for me. Like Chris, I use OSX/iTunes for the main system.

 

Downloading these players is free and easy. Just rip a CD into all of them and let your ears be your guide. I'd bet on many systems FLAC on player A will sound the same as FLAC on player B. My suggestion is, "Don't read too much into what you can read". I studied players for hours and hours via reading. Finally I just starting downloading them and trying them out. Everyone was missing something I wanted. iTunes won't do FLAC! Media Monkey if I recall correctly won't do OSX. Remember your objective - FLAC and Win. While I don't compress on OSX, I use FLAC for space reasons on Win.

 

The way I look - test a few players out, see what gives you the interface and file format you like, or can accept without a bunch of add-on gyrations. Then get it going (rip the pile) and enjoy it. If you have 500 or fewer CDs then if you change in a year or two re-ripping (if that's even required) really isn't THAT big a deal. 5,000 ... yeah maybe a pain.

 

Oh, I might use iTunes on Win too, but here's why I don't -

1) I use it on the Mac and want to have perspective on another way to do things

2) I think our IT guru's block iTunes from probing the net

 

They will never stop me - Muhahahahahaha

 

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for the thoughts.

 

ive been emailing someone who uses eac and he too has now got flac working in wmp (you just go to the flac site and download flac for windows).

 

i think im getting on top of the tagging thing, but wmp is a bit temperamentsl - you see something wrong, but sometimes it comes good naturally. for instance, its library is currently showing just 9 out of 11 songs from rems accelerate, even tho i know i have all 11 in the folder.

 

Panasonic PXP 42 V20; Panasonic DMP BD35; Sky+ HD Box. [br]Optical out from Asus P7H55-M into AVI ADM 9.1 speakers. [br]\"Music will provide the light you cannot resist\"[br]

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...does anyone use Mac OSX on a PC, and would this give the benefits of being a mac user, as far as audio reproduction is concerned...?

 

Does this spark any other ideas/conceerns with anyone...?

 

Panasonic PXP 42 V20; Panasonic DMP BD35; Sky+ HD Box. [br]Optical out from Asus P7H55-M into AVI ADM 9.1 speakers. [br]\"Music will provide the light you cannot resist\"[br]

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be along those lines.

 

Sorry its taken a while to respond by the way, Microsoft have aparently issued some update that has messed with zone alarm, my ISP inform me.

 

yes, Innertuber, im using winamp now. i might still continue to use EAC to rip tho, what with its extra error correction, and because it seems to play nicely with winamp anyway, unlike wmp. i realise 99.9% of the time id be ok using winamp to rip, but EAC just adds to my confidence slighty.

 

Might have some questions about how to tweak some bits and pieces in winamp at some point, but have tweaked a little already and im getting on better with it than my first trial a few weeks ago.

 

Panasonic PXP 42 V20; Panasonic DMP BD35; Sky+ HD Box. [br]Optical out from Asus P7H55-M into AVI ADM 9.1 speakers. [br]\"Music will provide the light you cannot resist\"[br]

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