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Too much music

Music news, rumors, what you're listening to, how you're listening to it and whether it's all on the up-and-up.

Too much music

Postby kurt_w » Fri Apr 06, 2012 6:30 am

I'm a pretty high-tech guy at work, but more or less a luddite at home. Or at least a late adopter. So here's my question to the forons:

Over the years I've acquired a huge collection of classical music on CDs -- probably close to 400 disks. A lot of it is hard-to-find stuff, out of print, disks that they only released about a dozen copies of, and some recordings that were never published at all.

If anything happened to that collection, there's no way I could rebuild it. That's one concern. Another is that I travel a lot, and would like to be able to bring more than a couple of CDs along when traveling.

I don't have an MP3 player. I've thought about copying at least part of the collection to my laptop, and/or a USB drive. That would be a huge amount of work [by my reckoning, since I'd rather not use any lossy format, the whole library would be about 250 GB] but I suppose I could start with just the best 25% or whatever.

Of course, if I did that, I'd end up with hundreds or thousands of files listed as "Unknown Artist, Unknown Album, Track 1" or whatever, right? My impression is that the software used by most MP3 players and digital music libraries isn't really designed to work with classical music, where the information hierarchy is more like "Composer, piece, movement" with the performers, conductor, year, etc. also helping identify a particular recording.

So ... I'd like to have a "backup copy" of my CD library. I'd also like to be able to carry it around with me on my laptop, an MP3 player, or whatever. But copying it all off disks would be a huge amount of work, I'd have to manually enter a lot of metadata in whatever system is archiving it, that system probably isn't really set up for working with the classical music genre ... and I don't want to start down this road and then discover that there's a better way.

Thoughts, advice, suggestions?
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Re: Too much music

Postby fisticuffs » Fri Apr 06, 2012 8:07 am

You'll have to pop in a disk and see what it comes up with for names. If someone else on the planet has imported and named them properly iTunes will probably be able to figure it out. I'd suggest importing all of it over time and backing those files up on hard disc and CD/DVD. You can keep the CD's if you want but I'd still save it it two places so you won't have to do the work again. If you have to enter track info I'd still go for it but it'll be a lot more work.
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Re: Too much music

Postby swoon_queen » Fri Apr 06, 2012 11:17 am

Check out local startup murfie.com. Pretty cool setup, and I believe they allow for storage of your own music while others can also purchase? I might be wrong.
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Re: Too much music

Postby kurt_w » Wed Apr 18, 2012 7:35 am

fisticuffs wrote:I'd suggest importing all of it over time and backing those files up on hard disc and CD/DVD. You can keep the CD's if you want but I'd still save it it two places so you won't have to do the work again. If you have to enter track info I'd still go for it but it'll be a lot more work.


Hey, thanks for the advice. So far I've imported and backed up about 270 CDs, with around 100 to go.

The track info issue was not nearly as bad as I'd feared. Back in the 1990s I'd listened to CDs a lot while working on the computer, using the old Windows CD player program, and its online database failed to recognize most of the disks I played. I think I tried it with Windows Media Player at various points in the past decade, and kept finding that the track info for my classical CDs was mostly missing or garbled. At some point, I guess I just shrugged my shoulders, told WMP to stop downloading track info, and just ignored it.

I gather that iTunes uses a different database. I don't know whether that made the difference, or whether it was just a matter of more years having passed. But of the 270 CDs I've entered so far, probably 60% required no editing of the track info, 35% some minor editing, and 5% needed substantial editing. That's much better than I expected.

I like having the original CDs (for a lot of classical CDs, the liner notes contain all kinds of interesting information). But it's reassuring to know I've got a backup copy of all the CDs stored offsite.

Anyway, thanks.
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