ripping to high res mp3 or flac - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 18 Old 11-24-2019, 08:21 AM - Thread Starter
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ripping to high res mp3 or flac

Hi all, I know this is probably in the wrong forum but I couldn't figure out which forum is best for this. I'm looking for the best and free software to rip audio CDs to really high resolution mp3 or flac files for my car. anyone know of any?

thanks

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post #2 of 18 Old 11-25-2019, 12:10 AM
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Just use Exact Audio Copy and the standard FLAC encoder. If you must use mp3 use lame. EAC can call each to encode.
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post #3 of 18 Old 11-25-2019, 08:45 AM - Thread Starter
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can people generally tell the difference between an mp3 file using bitrate of 320 vs flac?

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post #4 of 18 Old 11-25-2019, 08:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by velocci View Post
can people generally tell the difference between an mp3 file using bitrate of 320 vs flac?
Depends on what you are listening to it on,
in my home; HELL YES!
None of the artist I listen to deserve mp3 anything.

In a car, no, cars are too noisy.
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post #5 of 18 Old 11-25-2019, 10:37 AM
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Originally Posted by velocci View Post
can people generally tell the difference between an mp3 file using bitrate of 320 vs flac?
No.

Blind tests have pretty well established this, but there are plenty on the Web to try for yourself. I did pass one, but I identified "tells" on two of the snippets, so I don't count that.

But I rip to FLAC anyway because space is cheap and maybe there will be one someday that I can tell the difference, and it eliminates any doubt.
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post #6 of 18 Old 11-25-2019, 10:46 AM - Thread Starter
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what's the bitrate on flac?

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post #7 of 18 Old 11-25-2019, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by velocci View Post
what's the bitrate on flac?
Variable, and mostly meaningless since it's lossless (unless you want to estimate space requirements, in which case, the variability will make your estimates less accurate).
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post #8 of 18 Old 11-25-2019, 07:12 PM
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Unless you have storage constraints, I see no reason to rip to any lossless format.
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post #9 of 18 Old 11-25-2019, 07:22 PM
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Originally Posted by crn3371 View Post
Unless you have storage constraints, I see no reason to rip to any lossless format.
Even if you do, you may regret in the future not ripping to a lossless format.
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post #10 of 18 Old 11-26-2019, 12:23 AM
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Always rip to lossless, this way you have the absolute best quality rip to start from. The thing is, quality only stays the same or goes down. If you want mp3s, you can encode them from your lossless rips. There will be quality loss, even if it's inaudible.

If later on you want a different format, say AAC, you can convert from your lossless rips to AAC and again, you'll lose a bit of quality, but you started with the best quality file, so any loss of quality from your mp3 will not be present.

But if you decided to convert from mp3 to AAC, you will incur more quality loss, and potentially sounds far worse than it should as mp3 artifacts start interacting with AAC artifacts.

FLAC typically compressed to about half size. The only reasons to not use lossless formats is if your player can't play lossless, or if you're storage constrained in your player (e.g., a phone with limited storage). If you don't keep lossless rips, then you will have to rerip the files when you want a other format, which is inconvenient.
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post #11 of 18 Old 11-26-2019, 02:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by velocci View Post
Hi all, I know this is probably in the wrong forum but I couldn't figure out which forum is best for this. I'm looking for the best and free software to rip audio CDs to really high resolution mp3 or flac files for my car. anyone know of any?

thanks
If you're using Windows, then yeah, exact audio copy as others mentioned. If you're on a mac, XLD is the way to go.

Quote:
Originally Posted by velocci View Post
can people generally tell the difference between an mp3 file using bitrate of 320 vs flac?
Generally, no. With high end equipment and optimal conditions, yes. But we're talking thousands and thousands worth of equipment. With a €2000 system for example, I don't think you can really tell.

Having said that, in a moving car? No way. Too noisy as previously mentioned.

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Originally Posted by crn3371 View Post
Unless you have storage constraints, I see no reason to rip to any lossless format.
I guess you mean "I see no reason to rip to any lossy format?

---

I personally rip my Audio CDs in both FLAC and mp3 320kbps.

FLAC goes on cold storage (NAS and external backup of NAS), and the mp3s go to my SDCard on my phone and to listen on the laptop.

The point of FLAC is not so much for quality, but really to have a digital copy for the future.

If in 10 years we have an mp3 alternative that is 1/10 of the size with the same or better quality, with FLAC you will be able to encode all your flac music to the new format, without any loss of quality.

Or when your CDs stop working for any reason, you can always burn them back to a new CD with not even a bit lost.
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post #12 of 18 Old 11-26-2019, 06:52 AM - Thread Starter
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thanks everyone for your awesome input. I'm going to rip everything to flac.
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post #13 of 18 Old 11-29-2019, 11:58 AM
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Do both - some cars won't read FLAC!
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post #14 of 18 Old 12-01-2019, 02:16 PM - Thread Starter
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i'm using exact audio copy and chose flac when installing it. but when I'm ripping a CD, its using .wav for the files. how do I have it use .flac?

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post #15 of 18 Old 12-02-2019, 01:21 AM
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Did you install the FLAC encoder? It doesn't come with one and you need to install it.

The other thing is you need to make sure you tell it not to create a WAV riff header. WAV is a container format and I think by default it is set to wrap FLAC in a WAV file.
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post #16 of 18 Old 12-02-2019, 05:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by velocci View Post
can people generally tell the difference between an mp3 file using bitrate of 320 vs flac?
No, blind trials have shown this, 320kbps MP3 and flac sound identical, certain tracks may reveal differences ('tells' as another poster put it), but the quality/cost of the system doesn't matter. Anyone who says "you might not hear the difference on your system but I can on my system because my system is better and cost $$$$" is best ignored.

But there are still many other good reasons to rip to FLAC (or an alternative lossless format) so I would strongly recommend 16bit/44KHz FLAC for all your ripping needs.

Personally I keep FLACs on my PC and then re-encode them to 160-224kbps VBR mp3 for my phone.

Quote:
Originally Posted by velocci View Post
what's the bitrate on flac?
Uncompressed (.wav) 16bit/44KHz audio (like you get from a CD) has a standard bitrate of 1411kbps. FLAC compresses this without losing any audio information (hence 'lossless'), the final bitrate varies depending on the track, usually in the range 900-1300 kbps.

HD/hi-res FLAC files (24bit/96KHz and higher) will have higher bitrates, some are 2300kbps and higher. I consider these to be wholly pointless, 44Khz is perfectly adequate to encode everything a human can hear, higher bitrate FLACs are a scam pure and simple.

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post #17 of 18 Old 12-02-2019, 12:55 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Worf View Post
Did you install the FLAC encoder? It doesn't come with one and you need to install it.

The other thing is you need to make sure you tell it not to create a WAV riff header. WAV is a container format and I think by default it is set to wrap FLAC in a WAV file.
no to both questions. during the installation of EAC, it asks what format you want to rip in. I chose flac. after ripping some CDs, I just changed the .wav to .flac and it still works and my car can read them.
do I still need to install the flac encoder and not create this wav riff header?

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post #18 of 18 Old 12-03-2019, 12:37 AM
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Well, if it works, don't break it. You might find an option to change the extension so you don't have to rename the extension.
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