Ripping CD's - Is iTunes good enough?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by colby2415, Oct 5, 2017.

  1. colby2415

    colby2415 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    I have been ripping cd's and just recently came up with the idea of doing my whole collection for the sake of convenience. In the past I have used many programs like exact audio copy, but I always found them too damn overwhelming with all the options. I recently tried cd ripping in itunes as I was suggested to try it by a friend. Definitely much easier in a set-and-forget kinda way. Foobar2000 seemed closer to itunes in this regard with it's cd ripping. Now, i have various iOS devices, so I am planning to do the rips into apple lossless (alac). Since most programs support this and as far as i know there is no difference between alac and flac. My question is whether using iTunes for cd ripping with the apple lossless encoder setting will give me a copy of the cd in digital file form? I am also not sure what the error checking really does, but I would leave it on anyways as it can't hurt. Thoughts? Maybe there is another free software I missed? Would prefer not to spend money on software for this.
    Solvethebox likes this.
  2. KinkySmallFace1991

    KinkySmallFace1991 Playing cricket in the thunder and the rain...

    Ever since I moved to JRiver, I've been very satisfied with their ripping and burning options.
    detroit muscle likes this.
  3. curbach

    curbach Some guy on the internet

    The ATX
    iTunes is good enough if you take the time to listen to all your rips. Mistakes will happen, so you want to find them and correct them before you have stored the cd away where you can't get at it easily. The real advantage of programs like EAC is you will know you got a good rip without having to verify by ear.
  4. Ntotrar

    Ntotrar Not To Old To Rock And Roll

    Tri-Cities, Tn.
    Good enough for me.
  5. ThmsFrd

    ThmsFrd Forum Resident

    Seriously ? Listening to ALL your rips ? :rolleyes:
    I've been using iTunes many, many, MANY times and never had any problem that wouldn't have happened with ANY other software.
  6. colby2415

    colby2415 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    what do you mean mistakes? Are we talking about cd's in bad shape or something? Most of my cd's are in very good condition. Listening to rips fully seems silly, maybe one or 2 songs just to make sure nothing's amiss.
    Ntotrar likes this.
  7. Tim Müller

    Tim Müller Forum Resident

    EAC is good for lossless rips.

    However, for my daily listening, I prefer MP3 at 320 bit rate. Universally compatible, and audible transparent.
    I use the Windows media player for these rips. Never had an audio glitch with it.
    Diablo Griffin and Yam Graham like this.
  8. Vincent Kars

    Vincent Kars Active Member

    ALAC is Apples own FLAC.
    I have heard that FLAC support is coming to iOS.
    Both are lossless formats.
    FLAC does have a checksum, allowing you to verify the content.

    If the CD is read correctly, you have a exact copy of the CD when using a lossless format.
    Leave error correction on, it is more secure.

    Freeware like Foobar or MusicBee can do the ripping as well.
    The advantage is that they do support AccurateRip.
    Basically you compare your rip with those of others.
    The Well-Tempered Computer
  9. I’ve been Loading my CD collection into lossless iTunes ( via a Mac) for about ten years. Have around 140,000 tracks almost 3 TB ( on external HDs - and backups). I’ve never listened to everyone after loading to confirm that they all worked out. If I notice a glitch during a later playback, then I reload. That simple.

    I play mostly Records but when I’m working at home or having parties , iTunes playback through my stereo system works perfectly.

    I don't do flac files but I get those hi rez folks who prefer that. Lossless via iTunes works perfectly for me.
  10. vinylontubes

    vinylontubes Forum Resident

    Katy, TX
    I don't think you're right. There is a reason people use EAC, it's only job is to create an exact rip. It will keep scanning if there is a problem until you tell it to stop. I've used EAC on CDs that are completely unplayable due to huge scratches, and it ripped it perfectly. It took a long time with all the rescanning, but it did it. The verification against the database matched. The point is, EAC will verify your rip against other rips, so you have assurance that you did it correctly.
  11. colby2415

    colby2415 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    EAC was just too overwhelming, but if there is an up to date guide to setting it up properly I would be willing to try it again. I just remember it being very complicated, and I never knew what half the options even done. I don't want to second guess this, just want to find a method that works, and works properly. All the EAC guides I could find seem to be a few versions out of date, so half the options aren't listed there.
  12. Tim Müller

    Tim Müller Forum Resident

    You are right, EAC is a great piece of holy sch***. It does it's job perfectly. I use it for the one or the other job.
    Oh, and as I recall, the latest versions have a "no-brainer" mode, so you use the factory defaults, enjoy the results, and don't need to fiddle with the details.

    However, for "daily rips" of newly arrived CDs, I simply use Windows Media Player to have it ripped to 320 bitrate MP3, together with the meta data automatically added. Never had a glitch with it. Nor, with EAC.
  13. Carl Swanson

    Carl Swanson Resident blabbermouth

    All of the options on EAC or dbPoweramp can also be set and "forgotten". Plus, they are the only two programs which access AccurateRip.
    gd0, JCM and Grant like this.
  14. MrRom92

    MrRom92 Forum Supermodel

    Long Island, NY
    iTunes ripping is absolutely not adequate. Just follow an EAC guide - once it’s set up it really never has to be done again. It’s essentially set and forget.
    boiledbeans, ubiknik, Boden9 and 2 others like this.
  15. Not sure what’s not adequate about it? 140,000 songs in my collection can’t be wrong :tiphat:
  16. colby2415

    colby2415 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    The problem is, none of the guides I have come across have been updated in a long time. I know because last time I did this, the guides didn't cover half the settings that I was seeing with my installation. This is probably the best one I could find:

    EAC Configuration Wizard - Hydrogenaudio Knowledgebase

    Is this a good place to start? I don't see the extra features of EAC really being useful unless you are ripping very damaged and worn discs.
  17. Sevoflurane

    Sevoflurane Forum Resident

    West Yorkshire
    I’m a dBPoweramp man myself, but ripping isn’t ripping without AccurateRip IMHO (Google Spoon’s ripping guide). I haven’t used EAC much, but wonder if you may find dBPoweramp a bit easier to configure.
    EddieVanHalen and Grant like this.
  18. Grant

    Grant A Musical Free-Spirit


    EAC is very good at ripping problematic CDs. You can even see the error correction at work when it encounters one. You can also configure the angle of the laser. However, as it takes longer, I get great results with using dbPoweramp for ripping. It's fast and accurate.

    There are a few reasons one should not use iTunes for ripping, but i'll let some of the more knowledgeable people here tell you why.
  19. ThmsFrd

    ThmsFrd Forum Resident

  20. That EAC guide looks good. Just go through the Configuration Wizard when you first run EAC and it will be set up fine.

    There are some old EAC guides that are way more complex. Don't follow those. They're out of date and were way more complex than needed.
    patient_ot likes this.
  21. MrRom92

    MrRom92 Forum Supermodel

    Long Island, NY

    The above guide doesn’t seem very comprehensive. I’m trying to find the one I originally followed so many years ago but I’m coming up short... will continue googling for that one. In the meantime, here is a guide on a forum post by someone who I know is knowledgeable about this stuff. I think this one should be sufficient on its own in case I can’t find the other guide I originally referenced.

    I personally would not rip any disc using any method that did not:

    • compensate for read offsets
    • accurately generate a .cue file based on the original media
    • provide a log of the ripping procedure
    • verify the rip with accuraterip and/or the CTDB

    If any of this is not done then the entire rip is a waste IMO, and the effort between a properly done rip and an improperly done rip is fairly minimal so I don’t see why anyone wouldn’t take the time to do it once and get it right the first time.
    patient_ot likes this.
  22. curbach

    curbach Some guy on the internet

    The ATX
    It has been my experience that a small percent (<5%) of CDs will rip with a glitches when using iTunes--meaning one or more tracks will not play correctly (static, dropouts)--regardless of condition. If I was starting from scratch trying to rip 1000s of CDs I wouldn't use iTunes.
  23. Carl Swanson

    Carl Swanson Resident blabbermouth

    They can be bit-inaccurate. If you haven't run across any audible defects, then you're good to go.
  24. Carl Swanson

    Carl Swanson Resident blabbermouth

    That'll make sure nothing's amiss . . . with one or two songs.

    Bottom line, if you're good with it, it's good.
  25. patient_ot

    patient_ot Forum Resident

    Either get EAC set up or spring for DBPoweramp paid version if you need something like "EAC for dummies".

    Been using EAC for years and it's really not that hard to work with once it's set up. The old guides are too complex and don't correspond to the latest version of the software as everyone said. Your settings are also saved as you update the program. I think I've been using the same settings for almost a decade now.

    Follow the Hydrogen Audio guide and experiment with ripping a couple of discs using the different options to familiarize yourself with the program.

    Itunes is utter crap, IMHO, for the reasons stated. I started out ripping with it and had to re-rip due to glitches on some discs. Knowing your rips are bit perfect is priceless because it saves time and frustration.
    JimmyCool likes this.

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