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Old 03-20-2014, 12:08 PM   #41
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My collection is probably 90% classical, could this be part of the reason I struggle with understanding the advantages of digital? It's one thing to make a one hour playlist of 25 or so "songs". But if I'm going to listen for an hour, I'm looking at 1-5 works. It just seems much easier to pick out the LP and place it on the turntable than to create a playlist.
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Turntables with multiple disc capacities have vanished from the market, so one advantage is one can set up a series of disks to play. Also one does not have to flip the lp to hear the other side. Because they are lps i did them as side 1 side 2 since that is how you listened to lps in the past.
Once done I can put the LPs into deep storage.
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Old 03-20-2014, 12:15 PM   #42
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Turntables with multiple disc capacities have vanished from the market, so one advantage is one can set up a series of disks to play. Also one does not have to flip the lp to hear the other side. Because they are lps i did them as side 1 side 2 since that is how you listened to lps in the past.
Once done I can put the LPs into deep storage.
The few LPs I converted I also left as side 1/side 2. This does make more sense to me. Perhaps I'll try a couple more and see if I change my mind. It would be nice to have at least a few of the old favorites available at my desk instead of only in the music room.
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Old 03-20-2014, 01:58 PM   #43
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Wow, this got re-active in a hurry!

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In the most complete guide that I am aware of to Digital Music (The Ultimate Digital Music Guide: The Best Way To Store, Organize, and Play Digital Music) is a Chapter (Page 317) that goes into great detail on "Ripping Vinyl Discs and Analog Tapes to Digital." ("Detail" meaning equipment, formats, etc.)

However, the Author adds emphatically that:

Quote:
There is the additional question, of course, of whether there's value in digitizing vinyl albums that are also available on CD or available for digital download. If you're a die-hard vinyl devotee, you might think that the supposed warmth and fidelity of the vinyl release would trump the CD release, and thus justify ripping your vinyl to digital. But that's a fool's argument; if a commercial CD can't reproduce the warmth of the original, then neither can your homemade rip. ...
Not sure I 100% agree, or that it's important, but ... I can see the argument that the LP adds 'warmth' to the playback. So going to a CD made directly from the master tapes would skip this step. Think of the LP/stylus/cartridge as a post-processor. That's not why I convert LPs, but to each their own.

There's another effect that I've heard about. Sometimes (often?), the engineer is doing a 're-mastering' for CD. You can end up with a different sound, depending on how much artistic licence the engineer decided to apply. I can't think of titles offhand, but I recall hearing that some CDs had mixes with the drums brought way forward from the LP, etc.

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These snippets are what I want to hear more about. First, the 25 days. I simply mean that if I press play on iTunes, it will be 25 days before my library starts playing again from the beginning. If my entire collection were digitized this would be a 60+ day interval. ....
OK, now I follow you. Sure, if you already have plenty of music already in digital format, there might not be any advantage to you to add more. Only you can decide that.


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I think I get the playlist thing, but if I really want to LISTEN to a single piece, it is not likely that I'm going to place it in a playlist.

My collection is probably 90% classical, could this be part of the reason I struggle with understanding the advantages of digital? ...

Not being argumentative, this is one of those areas where I really want to believe that there are advantages that I haven't identified, but I just haven't been able to see them.
No, I don't think you are missing anything. I threw the term 'playlist' out there, but I actually don't use them all that much. I have several 'smart playlists' for Christmas music, so I can pick instrumental versus vocal, 'sacred' versus 'jaunty' versus 'mellow' versus neither. I use tags for all that, and the playlist allows logic so I can do any combination - like 'contains CMAS AND contains jaunty AND contains instrumental' or 'contains CMAS AND DOES NOT contain instrumental AND DOES NOT contain Sacred' etc. and I have playlists for a few different occasions, 'mother-in-law' music, and a few other 'background' playlists of varying 'intensities'.

But I really don't use playlists all that often, I generally pick out an album to play, just as you would for Classical. So it's really just a convenience thing - I find a few keystrokes easier than digging through the LP collection and loading up the turntable, etc. Or if I get bored or change my mind, a few keystrokes to bring up a different album. Some people have no problem with that 'inconvenience' (or actually enjoy the 'experience').

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... On the other hand, MP3 does have the advantage of being the most universal -- very few playback devices cannot play a MP3 file.
True, but either they are far and few between, or I've made sure they support FLAC and ogg before I buy them. But that's why my original conversion is always FLAC lossless - I can convert to whatever I need w/o generational losses.

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Apologies for butting in, but to provide a counterpoint to this conversation, I am considering digitizing some of my vinyl collection. Most of the music I already have in digital form, but my reason for wanting to do this is actually because I was so intimately familiar with all the clicks and pops on my records that, for me, those sounds became an integral part of the way I experienced the recording. In other words, I'd like to be able to listen to my old record collection with all the surface noise, pops and clicks. If I want to hear it without the noise, I'll listen to it on CD.
DW would talk about how she likes the clicky sounds from an LP. OK, it sounds really weird on one hand, but I kind of get it. I had some cassette tapes I made of albums many years ago, to preserve the album. And one in particular had the tape rolling as the LP ended, and I can hear my much younger self brushing the dust off the stylus. It would always take me back to the day I made that recording.

But mostly, the clicks interfere with my enjoyment of the music, so out they go!


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As I digitized my lp collection I decided to not break the tracks up but leave them as side 1 side 2 etc. This is how I at least listened to them in the past. Since mine are almost all classical, I kept the selections intact. ...
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The few LPs I converted I also left as side 1/side 2. This does make more sense to me. Perhaps I'll try a couple more and see if I change my mind. It would be nice to have at least a few of the old favorites available at my desk instead of only in the music room.
I've been breaking them up for flexibility, but almost always listen to an album straight through, so I see your point. If there was, for example, one tune/track that also would stand out on its own, you could always make a copy of that one track on its own, then you also have the flexibility for that track, w/o the work of breaking up the whole LP.

-ERD50
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Old 03-20-2014, 02:12 PM   #44
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But that's why my original conversion is always FLAC lossless - I can convert to whatever I need w/o generational losses.
-ERD50
I, also, use FLAC nowadays. Way back when, I ripped everything to WAV format. OGG is, of course, a lossy conversion that I never considered.

In truth, however, I don't do much of this anymore anyway. I have way too many audio files... if I played them one at a time in a continuous stream, I would not live long enough to hear them all.

(And don't get me started on video.)
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Old 11-06-2015, 04:04 PM   #45
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I am going to convert some of my cassette tapes and LPs to digital. The first step is to get the cabling right from my stereo receiver to the computer sound input. I am thinking of using this software:
Audio/Video Recorder, Editor, Converter. Capture streaming video and audio.
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Old 11-06-2015, 04:31 PM   #46
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I am going to convert some of my cassette tapes and LPs to digital. The first step is to get the cabling right from my stereo receiver to the computer sound input. I am thinking of using this software:
Audio/Video Recorder, Editor, Converter. Capture streaming video and audio.
I highly recommend the following open source, free, cross platform (Win, Mac, Linux) software:

Audacity: Free Audio Editor and Recorder

It is very well supported, has an active forum for help, tips, etc, and is super flexible, and pretty easy to use. I've used it to digitize both cassettes and LPs. Heck, I even used it to record a message on my answering machine.

-ERD50
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Old 11-06-2015, 04:35 PM   #47
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I have used TotalRecorder for probably well over a decade. Not for converting music from old media, but just for recording 'whatever' from my PC; it kind of steamed me that I couldn't record stuff that I could hear coming from my speakers (until this software, which hooks right into the sound drivers).

As to the strategy of piping analog audio into your computer and digitizing there, eh, not a big fan of that.

What I've found, and YMMV, the back of a computer is a noisy place, rf-wise, and I'm not sure you'd get in without some nastiness. You'd probably end-up with at least some 60 cycle hum. You could have ground loop issues too.

If I were you, if most of what I wanted was LP's, I'd buy a USB turntable, but I doubt you can buy a USB cassette drive. Cassettes are horrific from a S:N ratio anyway, so wiring that up with TotalRecorder probably wouldn't make much difference.

Actually, if I were you, I'd do what I did...I just went on an IRC channel and downloaded the albums I wanted...someone else digitized them for me! I only downloaded the ones I owned LPs for, so didn't feel bad...everyone got paid back when I bought the LP's in the first place.
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Old 11-06-2015, 04:52 PM   #48
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I have used TotalRecorder for probably well over a decade. Not for converting music from old media, but just for recording 'whatever' from my PC; it kind of steamed me that I couldn't record stuff that I could hear coming from my speakers (until this software, which hooks right into the sound drivers). ...
Audacity also let's you record any direct 'stream' in the computer itself. I've used that a bunch of times.

Quote:
As to the strategy of piping analog audio into your computer and digitizing there, eh, not a big fan of that.

What I've found, and YMMV, the back of a computer is a noisy place, rf-wise, and I'm not sure you'd get in without some nastiness. You'd probably end-up with at least some 60 cycle hum. You could have ground loop issues too.
I'd suggest trying it, it might be fine, or 'good enough'. It's free and convenient, so if it works, why not? The YMMV is key there.


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If I were you, if most of what I wanted was LP's, I'd buy a USB turntable, but I doubt you can buy a USB cassette drive.
I would not do that. I would get a standalone ADC (Analog to Digital Converter. Here's what I use - it includes a phono pre-amp, so it can be used with a turntable as well. If you really never envision using the phono input, there might be cheaper ones out there, but I know this to be a very high quality unit (and probably overkill, but it's not like $80 is extreme).

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...=1&*entries*=0

And even if you do want to do LPs, the typical USB turntables are trash. Any modest turntable with a modest cartridge will likely be far better - you just need the external converter, like I linked above. What do you know, I found someone who agrees with me on the Internet!

USB turntables: The worst-ever audio product? - CNET


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Actually, if I were you, I'd do what I did...I just went on an IRC channel and downloaded the albums I wanted...someone else digitized them for me! I only downloaded the ones I owned LPs for, so didn't feel bad...everyone got paid back when I bought the LP's in the first place.
That would be a lot more convenient. I'd be concerned about being tagged as a thief though (even though I agree it really isn't a moral dilemma for me if I own the original - but tell that to the judge).

-ERD50
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Old 11-06-2015, 05:02 PM   #49
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Here's two cheaper ADCs ($30), one is line level only (like a cassette), the other (at the same price?) switches between line and phono.

http://www.amazon.com/Behringer-UCA2...A1M4QF5G8BE3B6

http://www.amazon.com/Behringer-UFO2...ct_top?ie=UTF8

I have not used them, but they seem to get good reviews.

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Old 11-06-2015, 08:15 PM   #50
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I borrowed a friend's Denon turntable to experiment with the conversion and came to the conclusion that I will just stick with the LPs and my old Dual turntable. The Denon worked well enough but it is a tedious and time consuming task. The only problem was a bit of hiss that I assume came from the Denon's DA converter. It was not there when just running analog cables to my stereo.
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Old 11-06-2015, 09:34 PM   #51
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I borrowed a friend's Denon turntable to experiment with the conversion and came to the conclusion that I will just stick with the LPs and my old Dual turntable. The Denon worked well enough but it is a tedious and time consuming task. The only problem was a bit of hiss that I assume came from the Denon's DA converter. It was not there when just running analog cables to my stereo.
Pretty much where I'm at. I'll just keep my LPs and my turntables and play them and enjoy them as they are. It's just too tedious to do a proper conversion and with a lot of the music being available directly from digital sources it's not worth it. Besides I enjoy reading the LP liners and looking at the full size artwork as I listen to the LP playing as God intended
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Old 11-06-2015, 09:45 PM   #52
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Thanks for all of the excellent responses. I am getting the info I need to make good decisions, I just need to process it. I will keep you posted.
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Old 11-07-2015, 09:18 AM   #53
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One more thing. As mentioned earlier, if I were going to do the conversion of all 700+ LPs that I have I would go to FLAC format instead of MP3. To me there is a noticeable loss in quality unless one uses a very high bit rate for the MP3; I would say at least 256kbps.
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Old 11-07-2015, 09:26 AM   #54
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And if anyone decides after converting all of your LPs you want to get rid of them, let me know, I may be interested in some!

Maybe work out a fair price to take them off of your hands.
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Old 11-07-2015, 10:18 AM   #55
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I have used TotalRecorder for probably well over a decade.
I, too, used TotalRecorder for many years but drifted away several years ago because it just became too complicated... trying to keep up with plug-ins, for instance.

I now use the Applian Suite for all my computer recording. (https://applian.com/windows/) These programs are easy to use and are essentially fool-proof.

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Discover the Power to Capture ANY Online Video & Audio

The Replay Capture Suite contains seven incredibly handy software programs that provide all the tools you need to capture media from the internet. You can record radio, save music as MP3 files, download video, and convert and edit your recorded files. Explore the tabs above to see what the Replay Capture Suite can do for you!


Another group of programs that I can recommend can be found here -- http://www.avs4you.com/
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