Ripping to mp3: What Bitrate?

Status
Not open for further replies.

CJ Greiner

Supreme Gold Member
For a long time, 192kbps has been the "standard" by giving very good quality, while still being fairly compact.

Now that larger hard drives are commonplace and disk space is no longer at such a premium, do you find yourselves ripping at higher bitrates?

:?:
 
CJ,
I rip everything at 320. I could definitely tell the difference between a 192 and 320 kbps, especially in the club environment. The disk space savings are nominal given today's large, fairly inexpensive drives as you noted.
 

jwg

New Member
My rackmount HD (3 yrs old) is still 120gb and my laptop HD is 160gb. I still rip at 160. If I were starting the process over, I would rip at 192 and start at least with a 250gb-300gb HD.
 

CJ Greiner

Supreme Gold Member
Without doing a direct comparison, most people won't know you're playing mp3's, no matter what they were ripped at.

I'm certainly not saying I want to rip to .wav files. That's way too huge.
And... some of the DJ programs I use don't guarantee compatibility with lossless compression formats, so I need to continue with other mp3 (or other lossy formats?) for now.

Aural Landscapes - You said you were able to tell the difference in quality... was it enough that it made 192 sound bad, or were you really just trying to get the absolute best possible quality available from the mp3 format?

Thanks.
 

Scott McKinney

Active Member
I've been ripping at VBR 100 for about 4 or 5 years. Typical bitrate conversion comes out to 250's to 320's. I have had no issues.
Should I ripp again, I'd go Lossless.
 

MusicDoctorDJ

New Member
Even though I haven't decided to make the switch to PCDJing yet, I have been getting the urge to start converting all of my CD's to MP3's!

One . . . for backup . . . and two . . . just to have a jump start on the ripping process once I do decide to go that way!

I'm still not sure which bitrate to burn at . . . been thinking 192 or 320!

I figure that as long as I'm ripping them I might as well do the best quality possible!

Just like with a digital camera . . . why have a 6 megapixel camera and shoot it at 3 megapixel . . .

I recently purchased Visitrax and spent two weeks getting all of my CD's in there . . . that was a fun project!
 

James Kane

New Member
CJ,

If you already have everything in CBR192 there is no need to reimport, unless you are going to go lossless. Higher bit rates in general are just a waste of space and the time factor to reencode again isn't worth the effort.

Sure you might be able to tell the difference on some files (a ton of my VBR files are in the 200 to 220 range), but you need to be actively listening to hear it. How many guests are picking apart your audio quality instead of just enjoying the party?
 

CJ Greiner

Supreme Gold Member
That's a good point.
I wouldn't spend the time at this point re-ripping everything to a higher lossy format.
But, I can certainly rip my new CDs at a higher bitrate if it really makes a difference.
 

jimmie

DJ of the year
As others have mentioned in other threads, your best bet is to rip everything lossless and then convert to what you plan to use. This way, when a new format comes out you can just go back to your original lossless files and reconvert them - it might take a while but you can set up a batch job and not sit there having to swap CDs for weeks on end.

As good as this advice is, I haven't been doing it... yet. I used to rip at 160, now I rip at 192. Probably have half to 2/3 of my collection at 160 and haven't had reason to complain.
 

MartyEvans

New Member
I rip everything in VBR 128 min 320k max this way you get the best quality as required with the smallest possible file size. I have been ripping vinyl to mp3 since the first codec was invented and that is the best combination I have found by far and I use it for live mobile work and night clubs
 

CJ Greiner

Supreme Gold Member
Jimmie said:
As others have mentioned in other threads, your best bet is to rip everything lossless and then convert to what you plan to use.
That's an interesting idea. Do the lossless formats have the same tags so that you don't have to re-create them?

It would mean ripping twice at first... but not having to ever pull the CD out again just might be worth it.

Does AudioGrabber convert from lossless to mp3, or are there other programs for this?
 

jimmie

DJ of the year
I can't speak to what audiograbber will do as I don't use it. I use Easy CDDA extractor (not to be confused with Easy CD Creator) which would allow for the conversion of any file format to any other file format. There are a couple of lossless formats that retain all of your tag info, but wav is not one of them.

And you're not actually ripping twice, you're ripping then converting. The tedious part is the rip which you have to do anyway. The conversion can run without your supervision.
 

DJ_Xtreme00

Active Member
jimmie said:
I can't speak to what audiograbber will do as I don't use it. I use Easy CDDA extractor (not to be confused with Easy CD Creator) which would allow for the conversion of any file format to any other file format. There are a couple of lossless formats that retain all of your tag info, but wav is not one of them.

And you're not actually ripping twice, you're ripping then converting. The tedious part is the rip which you have to do anyway. The conversion can run without your supervision.
Other than WAV what are the other lossless formats? I never knew there were others.
 

Jim Weisz

ProDJ Sponsor
Staff member
jimmie said:
There are a couple of lossless formats that retain all of your tag info, but wav is not one of them.
I'm currently storing my files as WAV and then encoding to MP3...but am saving the WAV. When I encode to MP3 all the ID3 tags are there. I do have the boxes checked in Audiograbber to append the ID3 tags so I'm guessing that's why it works.
 

jimmie

DJ of the year
DJ_Xtreme00 said:
Other than WAV what are the other lossless formats? I never knew there were others.
Well, for instance if you use iTunes there is the Apple Lossless Codec (yes, that's what it's called). There's a few others but I'm not certain of their names. Wav does not support tag info, so if someone is achieving results ripping to wav and having tag info appear when you convert, it's probably being stored in an .xml file associated with the program you are using to rip. Alot of programs do this to store info that tags do not support, such as gain and song ratings. Virtual DJ does this as well as iTunes. This is why I find it funny that OTs or DJ Power or one of the various DJ programs needs to have files converted to a proprietary format which is just an mp3 with more info than a normal tag. The same is accomplished with an .xml database file.

Also, I forgot to mention, other lossless formats still save space compared to .wav files. I believe they run about half the size.
 

SoftJock Rick

ProDJ Sponsor
FYI for the tech geeks out there :) :

AudioGrabber actually tags the WAV file. If you open a WAV file ripped via AG in a HEX editor, you will find both a subset of the ID3V2 tag, and the V1 tag appended to the end of the WAV data.

The reason they don't blow up decoders, is that the chunk they use is ignored by the decoder. Most decoders simply pass over any chunks they do not recognize, and proceed on to the next chunk (if any) of music data.

WAV does have a minimum standard for labeling in the spec, but nobody really uses that from what I can tell. WAV files can also store other compressed formats besides PCM or RAW data, in other words, you can put an MP3 in a WAV file if you wanted to.

Our new libraries both read and write ID3 tags to WAV files, and can read and parse the AG tags on the WAVs (shameless plug :) ).

No, they are not yet commercially available, although almost finished...


My ripping preferences:

I rip to WAV, then convert what I need to MP3 (if I need to - mainly just for testing). Since -- on the rare occasion when I actually get to DJ anymore, I only carry about 1-2k working tracks -- I really have no great need to convert them anymore. In the cases where I might convert, I usually go with 192 CBR, as I think the point of diminishing returns (to my ears anyway), is reached at about that point.

Just personal preference for me on number of tracks, as I usually have a good idea what group of songs I'll play at an event, and don't do a lot of requests. Also, the overhead of searching and sorting through a 50,000 track list, is overly intensive IMHO, on a machine that's already got at least one track playing, another cued, and is probably doing other things like effects as well. So I err on the side of stability, and try not to overwhelm the machine I'm playing on.
 

Jackie

New Member
I've been encoding at 320 for the past three years now, before that was 256.

Reason? To KNOW for sure that i'm getting the absolutely best quality and not feel like i'm compromising anything

Also, long time I ago, i did a back to back comparison of the original VS an MP3. I found that the MP3 encoded at 192 had a very slightly different sound than the original. Not that it's bad sounding, it's just colored a little bit. 256 seems to be transparent. But since hard drives are so cheap, i'm ripping at 320kps. I'll probably look into lossless encoding soon.. just as long there is global support of it like mp3.

Also... make sure you guys are using LAME or Fhg encoders. Everything else is no good...
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top