question about the cd burning side of things.

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question about the cd burning side of things.

Permanent link to this post Posted by zurich » Sun Jan 29, 2017 11:26 pm

hello audacity forum. i hadn't heard of audacity until yesterday but wow, what a wonderful thing. i do hope my questions are appropriate for the audacity forum because i suppose technically they relate to the cd side of things after you have made your music and ready to burn onto a cd.

because that's what im going to do: make a gapless mix of audio on audacity and then burn it onto 20 different cds to then give away as part of a promotion!

i have some questions about this and so i thought i'd post on here. ive looked around for answers but wow! some answers that allude to the things i want to know are so deeply technical that my head spins (literally too, you should see it!). however all my reading has bought up some questions and i thoguht id come here and get right to the point.

i really appreciate any help that anyone can give me. you can probably tell im a novice so lol to that! please excuse my question dump.

1. i will burn onto a cd-r and absolutely not a cd-rw?
2. i will use software that supports gapless burning ie that supports disc at once?
2a. can you recommend a software for this?
2b. it this software flawless ie will the burn happen gaplessly all the time or might there be demons?
2c. if there might be demons, why is this and what are they likely to be?
3. as mentioned, i am going to give away 20 or 30 cds to different people. each cd will therefore be played on a different cd player. how likely is it that somebody's cd player wont be able to play my burned cd? is it unlikely, or 2/30, or maybe 15/30? basically, i guess my question is: can most cd players (in cars, in computers) play burned cd-rs?
4. also is it the case that the cd players that do succesfully play my burned cdr might actually play it with gaps, despite me recording it gapless? how likely is this please, that some people might hear my burned cd with gaps due to their cd player/optical player? basically: do most cd players play 'disc at once'?

thanks again for any help!
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Re: question about the cd burning side of things.

Permanent link to this post Posted by kozikowski » Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:15 am

CD-R. The CD-RW was a good idea that never caught on. I keep on one a shelf to show people as a technological curiosity.

CD-R will support multiple different flavors. You want Audio CD. That's not just a CD-R that happens to have music on it. Audio CD is a very specific, special format. You get an Audio CD by supplying music to an Audio CD Authoring and Burning Program. You can tell the program how long a gap to leave between the songs. Zero is a valid number. If your program doesn't ask you about the gap size, it's probably not going to make an Audio CD.

This is the authoring panel for iTunes.

Image

You can use Windows Media to burn an Audio CD.

You can include up to 99 songs and you can have up to 74 minutes. There's no such thing as a compressed, extended-play Audio CD. It's always top quality, uncompressed, no option. The music quality is the same as the Audacity default WAV export. 44100, 16-bit, Stereo.

This is where it gets into the weeds a bit.

Do not intentionally make MP3 music files for this job. Make WAV. MP3 is a compressed format and always causes some sound damage and you can't stop it. It's even worse if you started making your show with MP3 music files. The finished show MP3 export will make the damage even worse.

AUP is not a music file.

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Re: question about the cd burning side of things.

Permanent link to this post Posted by steve » Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:19 am

zurich wrote:1. i will burn onto a cd-r and absolutely not a cd-rw?
2. i will use software that supports gapless burning ie that supports disc at once?

For best compatibility, use CD-R not CD-RW.
Ensure that you burn the disk as an "audio CD" NOT a "data CD".
For a "gapless" CD, the software AND THE HARDWARE (the optical drive) must support "Disk At Once" ("DAO") mode.

zurich wrote:2a. can you recommend a software for this?

On Linux, most CD authoring applications can do gapless CDs. I currently use Brasero https://wiki.gnome.org/Apps/Brasero
I've previously used K3B (https://www.kde.org/applications/multimedia/k3b/) which is probably the most feature rich CD burning application for Linux.
Many years ago I used Nero on Windows, which was very good at the time but in my opinion became extremely boated so I don't currently have any recommendations for Windows (or Mac) software.

zurich wrote:2c. if there might be demons, why is this and what are they likely to be?

Beware of adware / malware disguised as freeware.

Reliability can be a problem, particularly with older drives (the drive in my laptop lasted less than a year before becoming hopelessly unreliable for burning CDs. Cheap unbranded CD-Rs are a very mixed bag - some are terrific while others are rubbish. Burning at less than maximum speed is often more reliable than burning at max speed, but this is also variable depending on the drive and the CD-R. Writing to CD is on the whole less reliable than writing to almost any other media. Definitely worth buying just a few CDs to test, and if they work OK, buy some more of the same type from the same retailer and hope that they work just as well.

zurich wrote:can most cd players (in cars, in computers) play burned cd-rs?

As long as you make "audio CDs" (not "data CDs"), and the disk has been successfully written to, they should work in most CD players. I have encountered a few players that refuse to play anything except commercial "pressed" CDs, but in my experience this is rare.

zurich wrote:also is it the case that the cd players that do succesfully play my burned cdr might actually play it with gaps, despite me recording it gapless?

I've not come across that. All CD players that I've encountered will, if they play the CD at all, play gapless CDs without gaps.

zurich wrote: do most cd players play 'disc at once'?

"Disk at once" refers to the writing process, not the reading process. As far as a player is concerned there should be no difference between playing a "gapless" CD with many "tracks" and a CD with just one long track, except that the former allows skipping from one track to the next.
9/10 questions are answered in the FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)
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Re: question about the cd burning side of things.

Permanent link to this post Posted by kozikowski » Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:33 am

A proper Audio CD with zero gap selected is intended to play straight through to the end. You can skip forward to where the gaps should have been had you made them. The gaps are still there, they're just zero. Skip forward to the beginning of song number four. OK!!

As above, you probably should not Burn Maximum Speed. I have a very particular CD player and I use that as my quality control. If it will play on this thing, it will probably play anywhere.

How are you going to label it? The white side is more delicate than you think. If you scratch it, you can destroy the disk. Do not touch the shiny side.

I have an older Epson R300 which has the option of printing directly to a printable CD. Stick-on labels are not recommended. The first time you shove a CD into your laptop and the label starts to peel off...........

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Re: question about the cd burning side of things.

Permanent link to this post Posted by kozikowski » Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:39 am

I know this is bordering on Too Much Information, but Audio CDs play from the middle out. So the outer edge is the least valuable real estate. That's where I label it.

CDLabel.jpg
CDLabel.jpg (92.52 KiB) Viewed 245 times


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Re: question about the cd burning side of things.

Permanent link to this post Posted by steve » Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:43 am

kozikowski wrote: Stick-on labels are not recommended.

They're absolutely fine for a couple of weeks.
The CD player in my car has a CD stuck in it thanks to a stick-on label that is more than a couple of weeks old. :(
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Re: question about the cd burning side of things.

Permanent link to this post Posted by kozikowski » Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:54 am

Remove the CD player and entertainment system for servicing.

1. Starting at the front bumper.......

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Re: question about the cd burning side of things.

Permanent link to this post Posted by Tim Lookingbill » Mon Jan 30, 2017 3:27 am

And to back up Koz's excellent info on CD labeling see the link below of a photography forum thread I started on CD-R reliability...

http://photo.net/digital-darkroom-forum/00SO0y

Just FYI on which CD-R lasts the longest with the least amount of playback issues I've been using one of the two company brands that invented CD technology, Philips & Sony, except I've chosen Sony CD-R's which is pictured in the above link. It's the 50 pack version of this... https://i1.shopbot.ca/i/3ef/617/p_15342 ... .jpeg?5189

I've been burning this brand of audio CD-R's (not gapless) since 2003 and they still play in my 1998 Walmart bought Pioneer car CD player, my 2010 MacMini and my 1992 Technics home audio player. I currently use iTunes to burn audio CD-R's.

Another FYI is if any CD-R or factory pressed CD you insert into a player doesn't immediately turn on the player and also starts make a shuffling sh-shuck, sh-shuck noise and ejects, it means you need to clean the lazer head. The dusty environment of my car CD player started doing this and I solved it cleaning the head with GE disc cleaner I bought at Walmart. It required several applications and it still continues to delay playing with the described noise but now instead of self ejecting it now plays.
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Re: question about the cd burning side of things.

Permanent link to this post Posted by zurich » Mon Jan 30, 2017 7:30 pm

guys cheers so much ... very much appreciate the quick and careful replies. You ve really gone to town so cheers, drinks all round. Hope you dont mind another question dump follow up, but i reckon this one is gonna be ‘peak question dump’.

@Koz - thanks for the step-by-step. Too much information? No chance mate, i totally appreciate all of it. I hadn’t thought about labelling, so cheers for the heads-up. I now know exactly what to do so cheers!
I’ll read up on the finer points of things you say (ie 44100, 16-bit, Stereo; AUP) but before i do, i just want to ask a few more qs … and tell you that my plan is to not use mp3s, but instead: import music onto audacity via both you-tube and cds. When i import from the cds i will do it via WAV as you have recommended. I’ve read a lot of stuff in the last 24 hours and iirc i will not need to translate You-Tube music into WAV before uploading onto audacity. Am i correct? Maybe you recommend it anyway for some reason?
About gaps/gapless: am i right in thinking that when you select gapless i.e. select 0 seconds, you do though still mark where these ‘non-gaps’ appear? And that this enables the listener to jump through the cd to these markers? If i am correct then is marking the non-gaps obligatory or just an option? Ie i can make a cd which is impossible to jump through if i want (not that id want to tbh - just wanting to check all bases so to speak).

@steve - thanks for the considered replies. Excellent!
About the demons being in malware and adware: would this be the case also in purchased burning software instead of free burning software?
About the reliability of the hardware and when you say your laptop optical drive became unreliable in about a year … what happened? Did the software say ‘unable to burn onto the cd’ (or similar) or did you think you were burning only to find out afterwards that it hadnt recorded?
Obviously i can buy an optical drive to hook up to your computer, even i know that! I would be willing to do this. Dont know why i said that out loud.
Very good news about most players being able to play burned cds. This was i think my biggest worry: i had read many threads about non-compatability but the ray of hope so to speak was that these threads were mostly from 10 years ago and i thought maybe things have got better. Isnt it amazing how suddenly internet forums are 10 years old (and more!).
When you say dont burn at maximum speed … are all other speeds ok. Or do you in fact suggest only to burn at 1:1 speed?

@Tim Lookingbill : thanks for the heads-up about cleaning and about the cd-r to buy. I will definitley buy these ones.
I couldnt get into that photography forum thread though. It said access denied but i am currently in a pretty crappy hotel and the wi-fi has been bothering me all afternoon lol. The silver lining is that i’d nearly booked myself into the cheapest hotel option, and not the second cheapest, so god knows what that would have been like lol!
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Re: question about the cd burning side of things.

Permanent link to this post Posted by zurich » Mon Jan 30, 2017 8:35 pm

by the way, since im here, i thought it's a good time to acknowledge audacity. great name too! but everything, from it being free to that amazing online manual. im not drunk but i still think that the people who made it and gave it away, and people like them, should have statues built of them. im not kidding either. why not?
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