After acquiring a Cowon D2 personal media player, I decided it was time to revisit how I handle my digital audio. A long time ago, I converted my entire music collection to MP3s mostly using Grip (and the widely used lame MP3 encoder). Most recently, I've been using Banshee to play music on my desktop. For a long time (until I lost the device on a bus in BurdensLanding:South Bend last October), I used a 512MB Creative Muvo for portable music, which worked great, although the small file size and lack of playlists was an issue.
I own a Zoom H1 for recording.
I've decided to re-rip all of my music into FLAC for archival purposes. I'm using Exact Audio Copy (EAC), which is a Windows app, for ripping. Configuration guides:
I attempted to use MAREO to compress both FLAC and MP3 at the same time from EAC, but I couldn't get it working properly, and quit out of frustration. I can easily batch convert from Linux. For Windows transcoding, the best tool I've found is MediaCoder.
In addition to archiving in FLAC, I'm also converting to MP3, mainly for my D2. The D2 plays FLAC, but I only have 12GB of space there, not enough for my entire music collection. Additionally, the D2 (and other players, both portable and computer-based) support a lot of MP3 metadata goodies.
I'm downloading cover art from Amazon.com and saving it as cover.jpg in each album directory.
The D2 also supports lyrics using LDB Manager, which is clunky and doesn't have extensive data. I've managed to mark some of my MP3s, but I haven't gotten my D2 to recognize the lyrics yet. I read a recommendation somewhere for MiniLyrics for lyrics management, although I would still need to use LDB to actually tag the MP3s.
I'm trying to fix my MP3 tags, but the Mac has a dearth of free ID3 editors. Here's what I've learned so far:
- MusicBrainz Picard. Funky interface. Automatically found some errors, but it's not thorough.
- Lots of people like Tagr. It's interface is predictably wonky, but it's fine. It's fatal flaw is that it doesn't recognize ID3 V1 tags.
- Tried ID3 Editor, but it's whole paradigm is one file at a time. It does, however, have a command-line utility, which may end up being my best choice for fixing tags.
- I couldn't even get Tag to load a directory.
- Currently looking at Kid3
I've settled on TidyMyMusic ($20) and Metadatics ($10). TidyMyMusic is very buggy. I'm basically using it to fix very broken MP3 metadata, knowing that I'll have to clean it up afterward using Metadatics. Metadatics is good for mass-editing, but it doesn't support automatic metadata through fingerprints.
Some commercial possibilities:
I'm experimenting with Spotify for playing music.
Next experiment: Plex
Recording audio from the computer: