Question New to streaming. Backing up CDs and FLAC, wanting lossless but confused by options - help!

RayP

Well-known Member
and stop using Windows 7 as it is now unsupported so drivers will not be kept up to date.
You don't know anything about me including my experience with computers or what I use that PC for. I'm well aware driver support has ended but all the software I use on my second PC runs just fine.
 

rccarguy

Active Member
I dispise windows 10, so much mess with tabs, have to go into sub menus to do stuff
 

Ratfink

Well-known Member
Thank you, Ray.

Last few I've ripped seem okay, however one random one gave me the _file error on all the tracks. I left it, rather than immediately deleting, and it turned to FLAC - a weird delay in finalizing the files?

Speeds seem up and down. I'm using a USB 3 port and it's all good when running full speed (last few CDs, no problem.) However, again it sometimes decides to start its rip about 0.2x. If I kick it off in itunes (where it consistently rips at normal speed) then go back to dbpoweramp, that seems to give it a nudge..

Update: I just re-ripped the CD I screen-shotted above and it's created the MP3 and FLAC perfectly whilst ripping at full speed. However, it simply doesn't like another CD (which is like new, no marks) and refuses to import it at less than 0.2x speed. I'll stick with it, but so far I quite like this software (when it works for me.)
 

RayP

Well-known Member
@Ratfink , good stuff. :thumbsup: Yes I found some disks can be problematic. Try a wipe with an e-cloth. Overall dbPoweramp is pretty good although I declined the half-price offer to update to the latest version as the one I have works fine.
 

wizball1974

Active Member
Although arguably all of those benefits are applicable to my personal preference of Logitech Media Server, especially the latest version with the material skin and music information plugins enabled.

I have control and playback ability on my PC, Phone etc etc. I can stream to Chromecast. Airplay and DLNA devices. Think of it as a slightly less fancy but free alternative and you wouldn't be far wrong.
Thanks for bringing my attention to Material Skin: I tried it out and prefer it to Squeezer - plus it saves me from having to install an app on a device. :thumbsup:
 

Ratfink

Well-known Member
I love the suggestions in this thread. Once I've got these CDs ripped, my next question would be how and where to play! I'm a newbie to all this, so not familiar with NAS' etc. Some useful tips in this thread, so happy it's taken off from the basic ripping program I initially asked about.

DbPoweramp has also played nice ever since and I'm having a blast with it. I've been ripping most of the last few days and am probably 15% through my collection at a guess...
 

rccarguy

Active Member
I have a Synology ds428 with lms installed on the Nas, music on the Nas. Very fast.

Self contained so just need router to be on
 

wizball1974

Active Member
I love the suggestions in this thread. Once I've got these CDs ripped, my next question would be how and where to play! I'm a newbie to all this, so not familiar with NAS' etc. Some useful tips in this thread, so happy it's taken off from the basic ripping program I initially asked about.

DbPoweramp has also played nice ever since and I'm having a blast with it. I've been ripping most of the last few days and am probably 15% through my collection at a guess...
Glad to hear it is going well; I still am working through the FLACing of my own CD collection (albeit I opted to use CUERipper) and have been delighted to have so many options to listen to and enjoy my music (not just the home setup, but back in the days when I still commuted, listening to my Walkman on the train).

There has definitely been an element of musical rediscovery about the process, listening to stuff that perhaps had gathered dust. It has made the labour of the ripping feel totally worthwhile.
 

jamieu

Active Member
I love the suggestions in this thread. Once I've got these CDs ripped, my next question would be how and where to play! I'm a newbie to all this, so not familiar with NAS' etc. Some useful tips in this thread, so happy it's taken off from the basic ripping program I initially asked about.

DbPoweramp has also played nice ever since and I'm having a blast with it. I've been ripping most of the last few days and am probably 15% through my collection at a guess...
Glad it worked out with dbPoweramp :)

re. playing it back..

To start with don't worry too much about a NAS (Network Attached Storage) devices. It's just a name for a PC like 'home server' device that you manage over network/via a web browser more focused on file storage and server type tasks. Synology and QNAP are the main vendors, But at the end of the day they are just a PC with additional hard drive slots. In fact given how cheap and large hard drives are now there is less benefits to using them than there once was. The main benefit now is probably that they simplify the setup of server type tasks/software and need less maintenance once setup and can just be hidden away in a cupboard or another room.

As mentioned earlier in this thread, music management software like LMS (Logitech Media Server) and Roon can run on your current PC, a small form factor PC like an Intel NUC (which make a nice for a nice quiet/compact form factor) or a NAS.

The good news is you can try out the main music management software packages on your current PC for free (or at leats the trials) right now to see if they work for you, without forking out any extra cash.

Here are the download links, LMS is free, the others have trial periods.
They all will index your FLAC library and let you control it via a nice interface, web based in the case of LMS (you can also get mobile apps like iPeng to control LMS) and desktop or mobile (iOS/Android) apps in the case of Roon. Audirvana has desktop and mobile apps. There are obviously other packages out there and people will have their favourites, but just trying to give an example of what is out there.

LMS and Roon then present your music collection in a nice interface with sleeve notes, artists pages or discovery interfaces. Think iTunes on steroids. LMS has similar interfaces, but not quite as polished, on the other hand LMS is free and hugely configurable, whereas Roon has a yearly or lifetime subscriptions costs. Audirvana is much more basic in terms of interface and features, but it might be all you need right now. There is also Foobar2000 but that is much more of a stand-alone audio player.

You can then connect your HiFI directly to whatever PC or device is running your music software (as you are now) or depending on your existing amp you may be able to stream directly to it over WiFI using the DLNA, Chromecast or AirPlay protocols. But if not and you want to cut the wire between the PC and the HIFI you can get cheap devices like a Raspberry PI or Chromecast Audio to act as a wireless bridge between the machine playing the music/running the software and your HiFi. Which bridge device to get somewhat depends on what software you chose.

The nice thing about this route is you can start using the software right way, making or migrating playlists and playing music and then move the software to a dedicated PC or NAS later on if you need to without wasting the effort you have put into organising your collection now.

----

That's only one route, you can also get all-in-one devices from various audio hardware vendors like the Bluesound Node 2i or Teufel Connector as well as similar products from the likes of Sonos, Denon or Yamaha that come with their own software that you connect directly to your hi-fi. These are more all-in-one units, unfortunately you can't really try out their apps/interfaces without owning their hardware. Their interfaces tend to be slightly simpler, focusing more on genre/artist/year browsing over rich 'discovery' type interfaces. They also tend to offer less in terms of music discovery and recommendation features. On the plus side they are a lot simpler to setup if you want an easy life, esp. if you only have one room or speaker. A lot depends on your budget, existing hardware, needs/usage, single room vs multi room, how much you value 'rich' user interfaces, how much music discovery or rediscovery is to you and most importantly (aside from budget) how much time you are willing to waste (or maybe enjoy wasting) on getting it all setup :)

I'd probably start with LMS and may be a free trial of Audirvana and Roon (just to see what a good interface can look like for comparison sake) and then see how you get on from there.
 
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RayP

Well-known Member
@jamieu , you omit one very important benefit of NAS drives. The ability to configure RAID1 which will prevent a user from losing all their data should a drive fail.

I use my NAS to backup several PCs so it’s a multi-function device. They should be seriously considered by anyone storing important data. With conventional HDDs if the drive fails everything is lost.
 

jamieu

Active Member
@jamieu , you omit one very important benefit of NAS drives. The ability to configure RAID1 which will prevent a user from losing all their data should a drive fail.

I use my NAS to backup several PCs so it’s a multi-function device. They should be seriously considered by anyone storing important data. With conventional HDDs if the drive fails everything is lost.
Yes I'd agreed that was once a key reason, along with network storage and backup and probably still is if you need multiple terabytes of disc space. I have a 12 bay NAS using RAID 5 at home, so I certainly don't have anything against them or redundancy :)

But with 4TB or even 6TB drives now available fairly cheaply (more than most people need for a music collection) and nightly internet cloud backups a realistic option, the need for a dedicated server to run a multi disc RAID setups, for a music catalogue alone, isn't quite as essential as it once was.

A small form factor PC like a NUC with nightly backups now makes for a nice and compact little music server that you can plug directly into your hi-fi if you want.

But yes, a NAS is probably still the simplest way for most people to add some redundancy and network accessible storage to a home network. Also as you say, a great option if you want a centralised server to store files and backup multiple machines to or run 'server like' software somewhere centrally. I wasn't saying don't get a NAS, I was saying don't worry too much about what they are for now, just think of a NAS as another name for a PC or server.
 
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RayP

Well-known Member
Yes I'd agreed that was once the *key* reason and probably still is if you need 100TB+ of storage. I have a 12 Bay NAS using RAID 5 at home :)

But with 6TB external drives now pretty cheap you can run two
My setup is rather more modest. 2x2Tb drives on a DS212J bought in 2012. I really should upgrade with larger drives. That’s an impressive setup. :)
 

jamieu

Active Member
My setup is rather more modest. 2x2Tb drives on a DS212J bought in 2012. I really should upgrade with larger drives. That’s an impressive setup. :)
Thanks!

I started out with a very similar Synology, in fact the current one is still a Synology NAS.

I only have 10 bays with drives in them, 4TB each, which comes out to ~32TB once you factor in RAID redundancy. Which once felt like an almost infinite amount of disc space and now feels like something Western Digital will be selling as an external USB drive in Rymans in a few years time :-(

I need to swap a couple of them out for 6TB drives as it's almost full (!!) and I want to keep a couple of slots free. It took best part of a week to rebuild the last last time I replaced a drive. I should actually go though my BluRay collection and just delete some movies, but has just always seemed easier to add more drives up until now. That's the danger of storage, it's easier to add to than remove from.

Also, while my everyday files, computer backups and music get pushed out to cloud backup from the NAS. My movie collection is far too large to practically backup — I did consider hiring an LTO drive to do a snapshot at one point, but the cost was prohibitive — so dreading the day the controller chip on the NAS dies :-( RAID is not a backup as my old sysadmin would now be screaming at me.

(anyway...probably all TERRIBLY off topic!!!)
 
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Ratfink

Well-known Member
This is absolutely brilliant, @jamieu - thank you. That was my next question and you went into it in some depth. I truly appreciate the kind help and patience from you good people in this thread. That's the next step, having a nice PC control centre, so I'll follow the links you provided. I'll start with the basics you suggested and go from there - but I've a lot of music so - once I buy new speakers - I will eventually upgrade my entire AV system (feel free to go OT, but I've started backing up a few movies too - also in storage - that I play locally on an attached external HD through PLEX. It'd be nice to integrate it all but like you I have rather a LOT of blu rays!)

At the moment I'm just ripping to a new external WD HD I bought for this purpose (maybe, 40% through by CDs? Making good progress!) As @wizball1974 said, I'm re-discovering loads of stuff that's been unplayed in storage. I was going to simply copy the drive over to another spare HD (if the worst happened, I'd be devastated but then that too could, and will someday, go kaput) but I will look into a NAS with RAID too. I was looking at uploading it all online somewhere for safety, but a local storage is preferable as I've a lot of music - options are confusing and a tad overwhelming, so happy to follow the advice from here and go with it!

Thanks again.
 

Flynch191

Active Member
They say to back up in three places. At home. Another building somewhere. Ie keep a drive around someones house and then the cloud. The main thing is to check that the backups are good by running a restore every so often. No point backing up corrupt data.
Anyhow to my point...for cloud backup I purchase office 365 subscription each year. The family use office and I get to backup 1tb off data that’s enough for my photos and music. This data is also backed up to drivers every week. Due to Spotify and all the new music I find I just don’t have time to listen to my old cd collection that’s ripped into flac. So my online storage isn’t growing that much anymore and I can see 1tb being enough for the foreseeable future.
there’s other online cloud services but as I need word excel etc this suits me just fine.
PS the next thing to decide is whether to keep your old cds now that you‘ve converted then all....?!
 

Jamie

Distinguished Member
PS the next thing to decide is whether to keep your old cds now that you‘ve converted then all....?!
Interesting question, technically I believe ripping CDs is actually still illegal in the UK, the law was changed 5 or so years ago to allow backups or transfer to a media device but it was overturned in the high court.

Personally I think that's ludicrous and I rip my own CDs without any guilty feelings at all, however is it still a backup if o don't own the original anymore?
 

Flynch191

Active Member
Hmm good question. I’d guess if you pass on the CDs you should also delete your backups..
Up they go into the attic then.
 

RayP

Well-known Member
Interesting question, technically I believe ripping CDs is actually still illegal in the UK, the law was changed 5 or so years ago to allow backups or transfer to a media device but it was overturned in the high court.

Personally I think that's ludicrous and I rip my own CDs without any guilty feelings at all, however is it still a backup if o don't own the original anymore?
Any law that cannot be enforced is not worth the paper it’s written on.
 

Ratfink

Well-known Member
I'd still keep my CDs. Most of them aren't really worth anything. I have a fair amount of signed stuff (and set lists and concert tickets) which isn't going anywhere, but they're pretty much all taken out the cases anyway.

And it's that backup in case something did go horribly wrong!

While this thread is still alive, I've been linking it all to Groove music for easy access (although some of the incorrect data drives me barmy!!) It's probably because I don't understand it, but for the life of me I can't get LMS to work!
 

spile

Active Member
What has worked for me over a number of years...
Use EAC to rip to FLAC. Use mp3tag to tweak tagging. Files stored on a Qnap NAS.
Playback for many years was Squeezebox Touch until I changed to a Naim 172 .
 

Flynch191

Active Member
I used a program called media money to rip my cds adding cover art and lyrics etc.
This runs on a small mini PC with LMS that powers my Logitech touch and other squeeze box booms around the house.

The great community that keep updating LMS make sure BBC (Radio 6) and Spotify keep working on my old Logitech gear. If these stopped working I’d have to upgrade.

I find listening to my cd collection has become less and less as Spotifys catalogue continues to grow.....but its good to know that all my music is now safely backed up.
 

RMCF

Distinguished Member
I stumbled across this thread, and it had made for great reading and a source of info for someone out of the music listening world for a long time.

I would have a fairly hefty collection of cds but over the last decade or more I would have rarely sat down and listened to any of them at home, as most of my day would be basically having talk radio on in the background or else having a selection of my cds in the car.

With lockdown and working from home, I found myself delving into my cd collection a little, and it re-awakened my interest in my collection.

I was going to buy the likes of a Marantz cd-r611 and listen to my cds that way, but I'm starting to think about ripping my cds to an external hdd instead and buying a streamer.

Op, how have you found the experience so far? Any more thoughts to share?
 

RMCF

Distinguished Member
You may have the music on a HDD, but what is playing the music?
Haven't decided on what to buy yet.

As above, mentioned a unit with a CD, just because you do get the odd lend of a CD from folk, would be handy to have the option of playing it without ripping.

But if I thought I could forego the cd player and get something with better sound quality that just played my flacs I'd be tempted by that.

Reading some reviews, I'd love something like the Bluesound N2i
 

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