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Dolf Dijkstra
2004-04-27, 00:53
Hi,

With Exact Audio Copy (windows only) you can burn and compress to FLAC
with one instruction. In that case you don't need the flac frontend.

Please read http://www.saunalahti.fi/cse/EAC/index.html for instructions
(scroll down to the flac instructions).

Cheers

Dolf

-----Original Message-----
From: discuss-bounces (AT) lists (DOT) slimdevices.com
[mailto:discuss-bounces (AT) lists (DOT) slimdevices.com] On Behalf Of Pat Farrell
Sent: Tuesday, April 27, 2004 8:26 AM
To: Slim Devices Discussion
Subject: [slim] FLAC Encoding


At 02:09 AM 4/27/2004, Jim Willsher wrote:


Okay let's say, theoretically, that I was about to lose sleep over my
200+ albums ripped to mp3 256Kbit, and I was madly considering ripping
to flac. Flac is not something I've come across, so I'm just about to
google for it.


Hey, don't feel bad, I had to redo 500+ CDs.
My Kill the CD project has some notes I've made
http://www.pfarrell.com/music/killthecd.html
Flac is from sourceforge,
http://flac.sourceforge.net/ But don't get it from there... because...

Most Windows users want to use a GUI front end, FLAC is a shell program,
or CMD program, or Unix-like command program. So for most Windows
folks, it is pretty user hostile.

I use FlacFrontend, available with Flac
on http://members.home.nl/w.speek/flac.htm
there are also links to Flacfrontend on the sourceforge site.

Some tips are at
http://www.pfarrell.com/music/slimserver/tips.html


Pat

Daryle A. Tilroe
2004-04-27, 08:41
Dolf Dijkstra wrote:
> Hi,
>
> With Exact Audio Copy (windows only) you can burn and compress to FLAC
> with one instruction. In that case you don't need the flac frontend.
>
> Please read http://www.saunalahti.fi/cse/EAC/index.html for instructions
> (scroll down to the flac instructions).

EAC with flac is definitly the way to go. I did all mine that
way.

--
Daryle A. Tilroe

Ron Thigpen
2004-04-27, 08:53
Daryle A. Tilroe wrote:

> EAC with flac is definitly the way to go. I did all mine that
> way.

I've tried this but found it to be slow. EAC rips track-by-track and my
CD drive spins down during the encoding step.

It's much faster to extract all tracks and then encode. The trouble
with this method is that EAC doesn't do the tagging unless you go
track-by-track.

Does anyone have a workaround that will get EAC to encode by disk after
an extraction, or hints on how to get the metadata to persist in the
extracted WAV files?

--rt

Pat Farrell
2004-04-27, 09:35
At 11:53 AM 4/27/2004, Ron Thigpen wrote:
>Daryle A. Tilroe wrote:
>I've tried this but found it to be slow. EAC rips track-by-track and my
>CD drive spins down during the encoding step.
>It's much faster to extract all tracks and then encode. The trouble with
>this method is that EAC doesn't do the tagging unless you go track-by-track.

Right, the extraction process is 5 to 10 times faster than flac compression.
I extract all my files first, using CDex or EAC as my mood fits, and
then use FlacFrontEnd to compress and tag them.


>Does anyone have a workaround that will get EAC to encode by disk after an
>extraction, or hints on how to get the metadata to persist in the
>extracted WAV files?

FlacFrontEnd has a program that it uses that extracts metadata from
the directory structure, or it can guess. The program is a shell program
called tag.exe, flacfrontend calls it automagically.

I generally extract for a couple hours and then compress all night.

tag.exe also has file renaming and a few other tricks.

It is not a one click process, whereas doing it all with EAC is one click
and slow.
I am willing to do the five click process to have it run faster. More
importantly, I want extracting to be fast, since I'm there feeding in CDs.
It can compress all night while I sleep.

Pat

Daryle A. Tilroe
2004-04-27, 09:35
Ron Thigpen wrote:

> I've tried this but found it to be slow. EAC rips track-by-track and my
> CD drive spins down during the encoding step.

What?? You must have something configured incorrectly with
EAC. I'm not sitting at home right now where it is installed
so I can't tell you exactly where it is; but you can
definitely have EAC rip all the tracks at once to wavs and
cue for your compressor. That is the way I did all mine.
When I was quick with the CD changes (and there were no
occasional read errors and the cddb info did not require
tweaking) I sometimes had 50+ tracks queued for FLAC.

--
Daryle A. Tilroe

Ron Thigpen
2004-04-27, 09:46
Daryle A. Tilroe wrote:

> Ron Thigpen wrote:
>
>> I've tried this but found it to be slow. EAC rips track-by-track and
>> my CD drive spins down during the encoding step.

> When I was quick with the CD changes (and there were no
> occasional read errors and the cddb info did not require
> tweaking) I sometimes had 50+ tracks queued for FLAC.

well the fact that it's possible is good news anyway. i'll take another
look at the settings and see what i find. if you get the chance, you
could maybe post a rundown of your config. thanks.

--rt

Daryle A. Tilroe
2004-04-27, 09:54
Pat Farrell wrote:

> Right, the extraction process is 5 to 10 times faster than flac compression.

You need a faster computer ;-). Actually the that's probably close
to what I was getting if you don't count the CD change itself (or
missing it by a few minutes) and tweaking the tags.

> It is not a one click process, whereas doing it all with EAC is one
> click and slow.
> I am willing to do the five click process to have it run faster. More
> importantly, I want extracting to be fast, since I'm there feeding in CDs.
> It can compress all night while I sleep.

As I mentioned EAC is capable of one-click and faster since it's
all in one program. Perhaps you guys are using an old version
of EAC? I will really have to look it up when I get home.

--
Daryle A. Tilroe

kdf
2004-04-27, 10:13
Quoting "Daryle A. Tilroe" <daryle (AT) micralyne (DOT) com>:

> Ron Thigpen wrote:
>
> > I've tried this but found it to be slow. EAC rips track-by-track and my
> > CD drive spins down during the encoding step.
>
> What?? You must have something configured incorrectly with
> EAC. I'm not sitting at home right now where it is installed
> so I can't tell you exactly where it is; but you can
> definitely have EAC rip all the tracks at once to wavs and
> cue for your compressor. That is the way I did all mine.
> When I was quick with the CD changes (and there were no
> occasional read errors and the cddb info did not require
> tweaking) I sometimes had 50+ tracks queued for FLAC.
>

I have come to the conclusion that it depends on the CD drive a lot. I have a
fast computer with a 52X CD drive and it extract a full cd in about 5-7 minutes.
I have an older PC with a 2X DVD drive and it whips out some cd's in about 2-4
minutes. Of course, encoding on the older machine is painfully slow. I've
found it faster to have the other machine connect and encode the file while they
are stripped across the network. However, unless I had a huge backlog of
encoding to do while I slept, it was just easier and overall faster to do it all
on the newer PC. EAC makes it really easy. I had two drives, so I could have
two session going for ripping, and set EAC to run 4 processes each for encoding.
This way I could cue up a load of work and leave it going with all guns blazing :)
-kdf

Ron Thigpen
2004-04-27, 11:42
kdf wrote:

> Quoting "Daryle A. Tilroe" <daryle (AT) micralyne (DOT) com>:
>
>>Ron Thigpen wrote:
>>
>>
>>>I've tried this but found it to be slow. EAC rips track-by-track and my
>>>CD drive spins down during the encoding step.
>>
>> What?? [...] I sometimes had 50+ tracks queued for FLAC.
>
> EAC makes it really easy. I had two drives, so I could have two
> session going for ripping, and set EAC to run 4 processes each for
> encoding. This way I could cue up a load of work and leave it going
> with all guns blazing :)

OK. Some questions on the specifics of this:

When you say "two sessions going", do you mean you have two instances of
the EAC program loaded?

Where/how do you configure EAC to use multiple processes for encoding?

Does EAC not stop extraction while the external compressor is
functioning? If not, how did you configure this behavior?

Sorry to be so dense, but for me to clear my library I'll have to
extracting/encoding ~1500 CDs. Process efficiency is going to be key.

No, I don't yet have a storage solution in place. I've got 320GB inside
the server box and will likely add 300GB external. That, combined with
a DVD burner for offline archiving, should keep me busy for a while.

--rt

kdf
2004-04-27, 12:17
Quoting Ron Thigpen <rthigpen (AT) nc (DOT) rr.com>:

> kdf wrote:
>
> > Quoting "Daryle A. Tilroe" <daryle (AT) micralyne (DOT) com>:
> >
> >>Ron Thigpen wrote:
> >>
> >>
> >>>I've tried this but found it to be slow. EAC rips track-by-track and my
> >>>CD drive spins down during the encoding step.
> >>
> >> What?? [...] I sometimes had 50+ tracks queued for FLAC.
> >
> > EAC makes it really easy. I had two drives, so I could have two
> > session going for ripping, and set EAC to run 4 processes each for
> > encoding. This way I could cue up a load of work and leave it going
> > with all guns blazing :)
>
> OK. Some questions on the specifics of this:
>
> When you say "two sessions going", do you mean you have two instances of
> the EAC program loaded?

yes, one set to read from each CD drive that I have installed. I have a burner
and an older reader in teh same PC.
>
> Where/how do you configure EAC to use multiple processes for encoding?

its in teh preferences somewhere. I dont have it installed here, so I can't
remember off the top of my head.

> Does EAC not stop extraction while the external compressor is
> functioning? If not, how did you configure this behavior?
>
I didnt configure anything specifc to this, to my memory. It just launches the
encoder and a command window pops up. Its been a year since I did the task, so
I may have, in reality, cued up several albums of wavs, THEN had EAC process them.

> Sorry to be so dense, but for me to clear my library I'll have to
> extracting/encoding ~1500 CDs. Process efficiency is going to be key.

ouch. I had about 250. It was digitising tapes that killed me. I ended up
giving up and just downloading copies of ones I really wanted.

-kdf

Ron Thigpen
2004-04-27, 12:33
kdf wrote:

> ouch. I had about 250. It was digitising tapes that killed me. I ended up
> giving up and just downloading copies of ones I really wanted.

yeah, analog's gotta wait. realtime capture + splitting + encoding +
tagging = way too painful. love my vinyl too much to part with it
anyway, and nothing's gonna replace hi-quality direct playback.

thanks for the tips. i'll play with it some more and post findings if i
develop a breakthrough process.

--rt

Daryle A. Tilroe
2004-04-27, 12:48
kdf wrote:

> Quoting Ron Thigpen <rthigpen (AT) nc (DOT) rr.com>:
>
>>
>>When you say "two sessions going", do you mean you have two instances of
>>the EAC program loaded?
>
> yes, one set to read from each CD drive that I have installed. I have a burner
> and an older reader in teh same PC.

Never tried ripping two at the same time. However I have noticed
that some CDs had trouble with in my main 56x ripping drive and
worked better in either my CDRW or DVD drive.

>>Where/how do you configure EAC to use multiple processes for encoding?
>
> its in teh preferences somewhere. I dont have it installed here, so I can't
> remember off the top of my head.
>

I don't see a lot of point in multiple encoding processes unless
you have two CPUs. Or have to because you are doing the dual
ripping trick above. Two in parallel processes will be slower
than one in series.

>>Does EAC not stop extraction while the external compressor is
>>functioning? If not, how did you configure this behavior?
>>

Certainly not normally. This would have been very painful. As
I said if you don't find the setting by tonight I will have a
look.

> I didnt configure anything specifc to this, to my memory. It just launches the
> encoder and a command window pops up. Its been a year since I did the task, so
> I may have, in reality, cued up several albums of wavs, THEN had EAC process them.

Perhaps, but the above certainly works fine. I did 300+ CDs in a few
weeks that way.

>
>>Sorry to be so dense, but for me to clear my library I'll have to
>>extracting/encoding ~1500 CDs. Process efficiency is going to be key.
>
>
> ouch. I had about 250. It was digitising tapes that killed me. I ended up
> giving up and just downloading copies of ones I really wanted.

Maybe we should have a FLAC exchange club for those of us
who can prove ownership of the tapes; with say a photo of us
holding the tape :-).

--
Daryle A. Tilroe

kdf
2004-04-27, 13:29
Quoting "Daryle A. Tilroe" <daryle (AT) micralyne (DOT) com>:


> I don't see a lot of point in multiple encoding processes unless
> you have two CPUs. Or have to because you are doing the dual
> ripping trick above. Two in parallel processes will be slower
> than one in series.

I woudln't count on that. The reason I did it, was because I was seeing idle
time. Having 4 went up to 97% shared between the four processes. Sure, if one
used up everything, it would be faster. I was also trying to see just how hot
the athlon would get ;)


> Maybe we should have a FLAC exchange club for those of us
> who can prove ownership of the tapes; with say a photo of us
> holding the tape :-).

or move to Canada, where its legal to download. And, at least for the near term,
its also legal to share.

-kdf

Daryle A. Tilroe
2004-04-27, 14:22
kdf wrote:

> Quoting "Daryle A. Tilroe" <daryle (AT) micralyne (DOT) com>:
>
>>I don't see a lot of point in multiple encoding processes unless
>>you have two CPUs. Or have to because you are doing the dual
>>ripping trick above. Two in parallel processes will be slower
>>than one in series.
>
> I woudln't count on that. The reason I did it, was because I was seeing idle
> time. Having 4 went up to 97% shared between the four processes. Sure, if one
> used up everything, it would be faster. I was also trying to see just how hot
> the athlon would get ;)

The only time you should get idle time is very briefly in between
compressions. Otherwise it should be pegged. Multiple parallel
encoders *HAVE* to be slower on a single CPU since the task
switching adds waste overhead cycles. If a single FLAC task was
not taking up most of you CPU time it must be being pre-empted by
something with a higher priority.

>>Maybe we should have a FLAC exchange club for those of us
>>who can prove ownership of the tapes; with say a photo of us
>>holding the tape :-).
>
>
> or move to Canada, where its legal to download. And, at least for the near term,
> its also legal to share.

That's me! :-) Up here in Edmonton, Alberta. Send all
your FLACs to my ftp server. ;-)

--
Daryle A. Tilroe

Daryle A. Tilroe
2004-04-27, 20:21
Just got back from work after reconfiguring the SCSI
bus on an old server. Would you believe that BackupExec
7.11d under Netware 4.1 does not recognize ASPI tape
drives with SCSI IDs over 7? If that meant something
to you you are definitely sysadmin material :-).

Anyhow in case you have not found the setting it is:

EAC -> EAC Options -> Tools

Select: "On extraction, start external compressors queued in
the background"

I highly recommend only one compression task unless you
have dual CPUs. FLAC eats all the cycles that EAC and
the system isn't otherwise using to extract and write the
files. Another compression task will only slow things
down task switching and adding more bus traffic for
disk reads and writes.

I note that on my Athlon 2200+ with a 56x CD it takes
about 3-4 minutes to rip a typical CD and 10-12 minutes to
compress with EAC and FLAC running simultaneously. That's
also with FLAC at the insane '-best' setting to get a tiny
bit more compression.

--
Daryle A. Tilroe