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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a couple thousand CD's that I need to rip. It's time, I put it off too long.

What do you guys recommend as the best way to rip, store and access after?

I need help in digital 101.
 

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I have a couple thousand CD's that I need to rip. It's time, I put it off too long.

What do you guys recommend as the best way to rip, store and access after?

I need help in digital 101.

I also have a large CD library, much of which I have ripped to my PC using Windows Media Player.

I find that the 320K MP3 files are almost impossible to tell from the original, and take up a lot less hard drive space than some other formats.

I also recommend the Music Collector software to set up a master catalog system for your CDs and LPs etc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I also have a large CD library, much of which I have ripped to my PC using Windows Media Player.

I find that the 320K MP3 files are almost impossible to tell from the original, and take up a lot less hard drive space than some other formats.

I also recommend the Music Collector software to set up a master catalog system for your CDs and LPs etc.
Thanks but I will likely use JRiver, I will rip to Flac or APE, I already have some HD downloads to transfer. I have a dicted laptop right now that store some on. want to move on from that.
I'd like to rip the SACD's DSD of course.
 

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Well, I'd store it in multiple external harddrives, at least two copies of each album, then put the other set of harddrives in a drawer-size storage unit so if lightning strikes at your place you won't have to do it all over again (even with a surge protector its possible to fry everything, a good surge protector comes with an insurance payout in such an event but that don't bring back data). Keep the CDs, as proof of ownership.
 

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EAC/JRiver/dBpoweramp to rip and a server to store on using Flexraid/Snapraid. HP N54L is a decent small server. If you need lots of capacity because you also store video, check this thread.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Just found this. Looks to be perfect.

Audiophile VortexBox


Please share all the negatives before I move forward. Thanks
 

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Very, very expensive for what it is: basically a single drive box (no redundancy, RAID etc) no different to a cheap android media player.

The N54L I mentioned before offers a ton more capacity in terms of storage, which need not be just music and an Intel Celeron NUC with USB to your DAC for playback and several hundred in change.
 
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A random external harddrive can offer up to 6tb for not much money (I believe you can easily get 2x 6tb external drives for under 1000 USD, even with Norwegian prices and VAT). Buy two for redundancy. If you rip it to the main internal harddrive first, then organize it and move it over in chunks that don't have to be modified, then no fragmentation occurs and the disk speed is nice for whatever amount of time you will use it. Whatever program you use to play it can add the entire external harddrive as its music library.
 

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A random external harddrive can offer up to 6tb for not much money (I believe you can easily get 2x 6tb external drives for under 1000 USD, even with Norwegian prices and VAT).
That's very expensive. In the US I see guys getting 3TB external drives for around the $100 mark each. This is the sweet spot. So 12TB could be $400.


Buy two for redundancy.
If you own all the CDs, there's no need. Snapraid will do a parity rebuild for free. Plenty of people here use it with success (or Flexraid) and have no problems with rebuilds after a drive fails. With the HP server, you can have 5 drives, allowing 12TB (if you use 3TB drives) and a 3TB parity drive which can be music, photos, data, whatever.

If you rip it to the main internal harddrive first, then organize it and move it over in chunks that don't have to be modified, then no fragmentation occurs and the disk speed is nice for whatever amount of time you will use it.
Read/write speed is irrelevant for audio as the bandwidth is so low. I can easily write a BR to my server and play back another off the same HDD with no stuttering. I use TeraCopy to spit the files to my server as it does it sequentially and CRC checks the data to make sure it's fine. Free too.

Whatever program you use to play it can add the entire external harddrive as its music library.
Yes, JRiver, XBMC/Kodi, OpenELEC, Media Browser 3 can all do it free or for modest cost.
 

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Just found this. Looks to be perfect.

Audiophile VortexBox


Please share all the negatives before I move forward. Thanks
Yikes! :eek:

I literally just built my first NAS with 16tb of storage for right around $850 (I paid a bit more than I should have because I insisted on WD RED drives ;) ).

With RAID5, I'm getting about 11tb of useable disc space.
 

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That's very expensive. In the US I see guys getting 3TB external drives for around the $100 mark each. This is the sweet spot. So 12TB could be $400.
I was using Norwegian prices as reference.

I meant redundancy as if your house burns down or lightning physically strikes the electrical system. I've got raid and I still have an additional set of redundancy. You can never have too many backups.
 

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Thanks but I will likely use JRiver, I will rip to Flac or APE, I already have some HD downloads to transfer. I have a dicted laptop right now that store some on. want to move on from that.
I'd like to rip the SACD's DSD of course.
How are you planning on ripping your SACDs?
 

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Recommendations

Just found this. Looks to be perfect.

Audiophile VortexBox


Please share all the negatives before I move forward. Thanks
Eljr - you are getting lot of good advice in this thread. I agree with your comments as well. I will summarize my experiences from 4 years of this, having started with a proprietary (though ultimately unreliable) Olive system and having had to re-create and move my library to a 'portable' format.

1) Your library will likely be the most valuable part of your system.

2) Use a software that you like and that has the needed features. JRiver is an excellent choice; so is dBPoweramp. I use JRiver in a Mac/OSX environment. I really appreciate JRemote on an iPad.

3) Pay attention to tagging, artwork, etc. as you rip. Think about how you want to tag albums, especially classical and jazz. Try a couple at first; try organizing them (genres, artists, composers, etc.). There is a lot of personal preference here. Most programs will get 80-90% of the tags right, but classical will require more manual tag updates than pop for example. Something like JRiver keeps track of all your updates (e.g. artist or conductor name, etc.), and makes suggestions based on your typing, so each successive CD tends to get easier

4) JRiver is usually pretty good at finding several artwork choices for any given album. In general, the largest artwork file size is usually the best, but only about 80% of the time - so preview your choice first. I also use XLD (free) connected to a (free) Amazon Web Services account - this works for obscure CD's we may find in a used record shop for example, which can 'stump' JRiver. You'll get the hang of all this; not hard. Perseverance pays off.

5) You want back-ups, but don't need to get overly paranoid. Four thousand CD's in lossless (e.g. FLAC) will easily fit on a 2 TB disk. We keep one back-up locally (on an Apple Time Capsule) and, about once a month or so - depending on how many CD's were added, I update a USB external drive which I keep in my office.

6) Keep the original media is a reasonably safe place. We use simple binders (Univenture 5 ring binders) in a file cabinet. We save the liner notes but not the jewel boxes. Just a preference

7) There are many choices out there for digital storage and access. Vortex box as you selected is very good but pricey.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
How are you planning on ripping your SACDs?
However you suggest.

Frankly, I was thinking of tackling this as a separate "adventure."

Basically, leave them on the side till all Redbook is ripped.
 

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I would agree with clpetersen above. Audio takes up a fraction of drive space compared to what video requires (ie 300 MB per CD in FLAC vs 25-40GB per BluRay). I agree that backups and redundancy are important, but wouldn't get crazy about it. A single drive to store them (wouldn't do RAID for something this small) and an online "cloud" based backup service is really all you need. If you want to back up to external drive, then fine.
I also love JRiver as a music manager and player; it's very versatile
With that said, budget will dictate what form the "box" takes; you could use an older PC, or built something cheaply. You could use one of these cases as a small "server." They have nice aluminum fronts. The downside being that the slim drives are slower than traditional PC drives. The ones without a built-in drive could make use of an external that you would put away after ripping all the CD's; alternatively, there are many slim PC's on the market now (Asus, Lenovo, hp) that have small cases, could house a 2-3TB drive and have an optical drive as well
 

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Vortex is a Linux box
It does the rippingbut I haven’t the slightest idea how good/bad it performs the ripping and thetagging. If not, you have to tag your files manually.
JRIvers weak spot imhois the support for internet databases (their own YADB and at rip time FreeDBto)
If you are into popthis won’t be a problem but in case of classical it is almost useless

My personal preferenceis to be in full control.
I do think dBpowerampone of the best rippers there is.
Its meta data ispretty good too.

I’am not a fan ofRAID, it simply replicates all your cockpit errors faithfully.
Better have a secondNAS somewhere outside the house and do remote replication
 

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I use MAID instead of RAID. :D http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-RAID_drive_architectures#MAID


Maybe other people can, but I can't listen to more than one music album / watch more than one move at the same time, and I have other things to do in life than music listening / movie watching 24/7. So no need to keep all of my harddrives spinning at all times. I own two powered USB 3.0 hubs and 17 external harddrives, giving me 37TB external storage, and 1TB internal in my laptop. Spinning down harddrives that are not in use is done by using HDDScan for Windows (freeware). Preventing automatic spindown of green harddrives is done by using (for tasks other than music playback) KeepAliveHD (freeware) and by using foobar2000 (freeware).
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Maybe other people can, but I can't listen to more than one music album... at the same time, and I have other things to do in life than music listening
:(

I am way luckier than you but not always. None the less, even when I was ultra busy with life I found time most days to spin an album or two.

:)
 

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I am way luckier than you but not always.
Hehe. :) My most recent additions are Seagate Barracuda ST3000DM001 / Western Digital Green WD30EZRX. Even though they aren't designed to run 24/7, you can play music off of them for much longer than just a couple hours per day without having to worry about them failing prematurely. And besides, spending more money by getting drives that are designed to run 24/7, like Western Digital Red (NAS) drives, for example, doesn't buy you anything much because if you want your data to be safer then you are better off spending more money on backup drives instead.


Also please note that the Wikipedia explanation about MAID (see the link I posted in my previous reply) states that low drive utilization rates may actually reduce reliability in consumer-oriented large drives. So, to strike a fair balance between running them 24/7 (typical of a NAS) and "low utilization", I recommend setting up a rotation scheme, e.g. after two to three weeks you can start using each backup drive for playback and each playback drive for backup. Next, rinse and repeat.


That said, only too often do I shake my head and ponder, does the fact that it takes some seconds to spin up a drive after it was spun down really bother people so much? I mean, I can spin up a different drive just before the last song of an album has ended. I could even let foobar2000 automatically do it for me if I wanted it to. My point is most people don't seem like they would even consider any of the reasons why things like NAS and RAID (and "reliable" enterprise drives...) are nowhere near meaningful for most home use scenarios.


A server build based around a Fractal Design Define R5 case and some additional Fractal Design case fans with an Asus Z97-Deluxe motherboard that has 10 SATA ports, 10 USB 3.0 ports and state-of-the-art fan speed control options will set you back a whole lot less than one of those fancy 8-bay NAS boxes. Still, I see tons of people recommend taking the NAS route even when it's not warranted, and they don't actually even understand that RAID cannot be used as a replacement for data backups. If you want backups that really are backups, then make multiple ones and unplug them from both the computer and the wall, store them in (geographically) multiple safe locations, and maybe consider adding an online cloud strategy on top of it all.
 
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