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dBpoweramp rubbish, any alternative?
2017-11-14, 10:33
Post: #11
RE: dBpoweramp rubbish, any alternative?
Can somebody be kind enough to tell me what to have 'all' the settings set to, not only in the main dBpoweramp interface, but in the preferences too. I'd be much obliged.
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2017-11-14, 10:44 (This post was last modified: 2017-11-14 10:58 by Briain.)
Post: #12
RE: dBpoweramp rubbish, any alternative?
(2017-11-14 00:33)TomBL Wrote:  Might be your optical drive.
I have had to clean a proportion of my CDs. Proprietary glass cleaner with appropriate tissue.

I would first suspect the optical drive (simply because they are all cheaply built and have complex mechanics within them) so if you know anyone who owns a portable USB DVD drive, it might be worth giving it a try, just to see if the unreliability persists with different hardware (and if that works, I'd suspect the Apple DVD unit as being defective). Of course, it could be a number of other things, so I'll suggest a few things to try, down a bit.

As to the general reliability of ripping disks, back in late 2007 (when I bought my DS) I used a mixture of EAC and dBpoweramp to rip 1000 CDs over a very short period (actually, my creaky old CD ROM drive died after ripping about 700 of them, but it was only £30 to get a new one and I am still using it). I worked from home, so it was trivial to feed them into the PC all day long, and of the 1000 that I ripped, there were only a tiny few (under 10) that gave me any form of grief (mostly due to surface damage, but there were a couple that looked immaculate and still caused problems; still, a very tiny proportion). Incidentally, back in the day, I found that for some reason, EAC was fractionally better at recovering the really scruffy ones, but in general, the process should be highly reliable, so there is definitely something amiss.

In more recent times, I cannot recall dBpoweramp ever giving me any problem, so my guess is that it must either be a hardware problem (with the DVD unit or its interface), a software problem (either with the Mac version of dBpoweramp, or with the Mac configuration) or something unrelated the Mac is periodically doing that interrupts the ripping process and thus cases it to fail (perhaps leave a resource monitor running whilst ripping a few disks, then when one fails, see if it coincides with another process showing 100% resource usage; that's likely the second thing that I'd look at if I had such an issue and it wasn't - proven by substitution - the DVD unit, itself).

Actually, that's pretty much how I tackle any such faults in any 'complex system'; use a mixture of substitution (swap bits out and see if changing part of the system makes any difference) and - where available - use any resource monitoring features (or even occasionally dredging through log files). I hope that perhaps gives you a few ideas which might help you to narrow things down towards eventually identifying the 'smoking gun'.

All the best
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2017-11-14, 10:49
Post: #13
RE: dBpoweramp rubbish, any alternative?
(2017-11-14 10:33)MrWriter Wrote:  Can somebody be kind enough to tell me what to have 'all' the settings set to, not only in the main dBpoweramp interface, but in the preferences too. I'd be much obliged.

This should help you and I would certainly start here.

TBH in my experience most setups will work fine just by installing as standard and without making alterations to these settings. They do allow you to adjust how you use it though.

re your earlier post re buying a separate CD drive - I would at least try one of the failed CDs somewhere else before doing that or you might just be wasting your money.
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2017-11-14, 12:06
Post: #14
RE: dBpoweramp rubbish, any alternative?
(2017-11-13 23:27)ac16161 Wrote:  while I hardly ever rip CDs these days I've always found dBpoweramp to be superb, these days I use it all the time for format conversion. Excellent support as well. Constructive posts to the site's forum get constructive replies in my experience.

This aligns 100% with my own experience - although very early on I had a handful of problems with CDs that refused to rip, these were resolved by purchasing a new optical drive, in fact a Bluray drive. All the failed CDs then ripped with no errors - I only have one or two now that won't rip due to some form of copy protection.

I simply don't recognise the descriptions of dBpoweramp as " ... totally rubbish" or " ... proving useless" and neither I think would users on this Forum? I'm always cautious about responding to such claims.

Don't want to get involved in a debate over the means by which iTunes and dBpoweramp treat "Error Correction" suffice to say that the OP himself has said " ... I'm starting to get the impression that iTunes has imported a load of discs with errors, even though they still play fine when streamed, and dBpoweramp does a better and more thorough job."

This Thread is quite interesting, I think, especially the first Post from Spoon: -

Follow the link in Martin's Post above and don't worry unduly about the more advanced settings - only point to consider is whether to rip in compressed or uncompressed format. I use uncompressed FLAC as the cost of storage is really insignificant when compared with the overall costs of your hi-fi system. Big Grin

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2017-11-14, 12:38 (This post was last modified: 2017-11-14 12:43 by Wat.)
Post: #15
RE: dBpoweramp rubbish, any alternative?
dBPA is very good software IME, but I must admit it is not as easy to use as iTunes on a Mac.

It is true iTunes does not use AccurateRip & moreover doesn't give you a report on the quality of the rip. iTunes has two modes of ripping (with & without error correction). if you choose without error correction then iTunes will rip almost anything. I had a CD by Robin Scott "M" called History of M, which iTunes ripped when nothing else would. The resultant rip was rubbish though as it jumped in several places.

So I much prefer software that uses AccurateRip & lets me know if something is wrong. I use X Lossless Decoder (XLD), which runs superbly on a Mac & has a secure ripper. It rips twice & compares & uses AccurateRip & reports. So I feel fairly confident my rips are good. Artwork & metadata are not always as I'd like them so I use Metadatics to sort that. You can load in your album & it will search for artwork (using Google or Amazon) & missing metadata (using Musicbrainz).

TBH I'm not very demanding of metadata: as long as it has album, album artist, track title, track artist, year & genre and some decent artwork. I'm happy. Sometimes composer goes in to, but I have very little classical music (I used to, but as I got older found I listened to less & less classical music: no idea why). I nearly always edit genre as I use it to keep families of albums together - so Fairport groups Fairport Convention, Sandy Denny, Richard Thompson, Dave Swarbrick et al together.

I have no interest in storing all the details I can find on Wikipedia or cross referencing the third saxophonist on one track with that on another track on another album or software that recommends what I should play as I posted on another thread such things make me roon for cover (or cover versions). My goal is simply to find an album I'd like to play.

My music library is quite large & I have ripped several thousand CDs & I'm happy with the results. I use J River Media Centre to manage the library.

XLD is free (you can donate if you are happy) & Metadatics is very cheap. You can do everything with J River instead if you want, but I have stuck with the way I've done it for some years now. Directly I copy my ripped CD into my directory structure (genre/album artist/album) it is visible in J River & playable on both my systems.

I have absolutely nothing against dBPA, which I'm sure would work just as well, but if you can't get on with it then the XLD/Metadatics combo is worth considering. They are both written exclusively for Mac OS.

Another XLD feature is that if you've ripped with iTunes you can convert to FLAC & check the integrity of the rip against AccurateRip.

I reemphasise the caveat, I'm not a classical music collector so don't have the tagging problems associated with this genre. Mozart or W Mozart or Mozart W or Wolfgang Mozart or Mozart, Amadeus Wolfgang showing as 5 different composers - though I'd create a genre called Mozart & group them all under it. Not sure how you solve different movements other than list title or piece & movement details in track title.

Good luck with your ripping.


PS Even if sticking with dBPA, you may want to give XLD a try on a problem CD in your DVD/CD-R drive. If XLD & dBPA both fail then it points to a hardware problem.

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2017-11-14, 14:07
Post: #16
RE: dBpoweramp rubbish, any alternative?
(2017-11-13 23:04)MrWriter Wrote:  I have a streaming system and I'm ripping CDs to a NAS drive. I'm using dBpoweramp, as it was recommended by the guys at Linn.

However, it is totally rubbish. Before my Linn and NAS system I simply used iTunes and I never had a problem ripping CDs into iTunes, my entire CD collection is in there.

But, ripping with dBpoweramp is proving useless. It only rips about 7 to 8 out of every 10 CDs, chucking out 'Inaccuracy' codes. All my CDs are brand new without even a fingerprint on them, I'm fastidious about that sort of thing. Besides, all these CDs imported into iTunes without a glitch, only dBpoweramp has an issue with them.

So, is there an alternative to the 'twitchy' dBpoweramp that I can use to rip my CDs to FLAC files for my NAS.

I'm on a Mac, obviously.

I originally started using dBpoweramp to rip CD's on a MacBook Pro and had trouble with several disks throwing up errors despite not having any problems with ripping to iTunes. I moved over to ripping on my iMac several years back and dBpoweramp has ripped flawlessly ever since. I suspect the performance of the drive in the MacBook Pro was a little below par and the extensive error checking in dBpoweramp was picking this up.
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2017-11-14, 14:35
Post: #17
RE: dBpoweramp rubbish, any alternative?
I sometimes have a few issues with dBpoweramp, and it sometimes reads some tracks as 'inaccurate' even from brand-new CD's. I usually find that rescanning, and trying to rip the track again sorts it out, but there are a few 'stubborn' tracks.
I think it's probably my DVD drive at fault, but haven't got another one to compare it to.
But on the whole, I find the program works fine.

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2017-11-14, 17:02
Post: #18
RE: dBpoweramp rubbish, any alternative?
I have never had any serious issues with it either. Occasionally it has failed to read the CD at all but I put this down to the drive on my ancientish laptop. A couple of retries and/or opening and closing again sorts it.
It is also one of those dilemmas with secure ripping. It will report faults, but it is also more likely to expose faults in the drive (it includes a disclaimer to that effect - "secure ripping stresses the cd drive more than normal ripping").
You could try either disabling "ultra secure", or changing the number of ultra passes to see if you can find a happy middle.

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2017-11-14, 17:31
Post: #19
RE: dBpoweramp rubbish, any alternative?
I rarely have problems with dbpoweramp either, when I have, a quick clean of the cd has fixed it in 90% of cases.
The errors that iTunes might ignore but which dbpoweramp picks up on could be tiny, even one dropped sample would throw the checksum out compared to AccurateRip. No one is going to hear that, 1/44100 of a second, besides which iTunes probably realises it's happened and interpolates a value, which dbpoweramp can be set to do as well if that's what you want.

What I do agree on is the Metadata and cover art. Yes, dbpoweramp picks if from several databases but anecdotally, iTunes seems to do a better job here.

I agree with the other posters too that it's most likely an issue with the cd drive.

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2017-11-15, 21:02
Post: #20
RE: dBpoweramp rubbish, any alternative?
Sofar I never had any issues with rippting CD's on my IMac using iTunes and a low cost external CD-drive.
I only regret that I didn't start ripping in lossless format right from the beginning but only changed to ALAC (not FLAC due to iTunes restrictions) a couple of years later.

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