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Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?

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Suegorgeous 28 May 10 - 02:46 PM
GUEST,^&* 28 May 10 - 02:49 PM
Bonzo3legs 28 May 10 - 03:53 PM
Barbara Shaw 28 May 10 - 04:40 PM
Bill D 28 May 10 - 04:55 PM
open mike 28 May 10 - 09:15 PM
Gurney 28 May 10 - 10:11 PM
JohnInKansas 28 May 10 - 10:43 PM
GUEST,Russ 28 May 10 - 10:45 PM
The Fooles Troupe 29 May 10 - 12:18 AM
Bert 29 May 10 - 03:55 AM
Geoff the Duck 29 May 10 - 07:06 AM
The Fooles Troupe 29 May 10 - 08:14 AM
Richard Mellish 29 May 10 - 04:44 PM
Bernard 29 May 10 - 05:22 PM
Suegorgeous 29 May 10 - 07:27 PM
Tootler 29 May 10 - 07:47 PM
Steve Shaw 29 May 10 - 08:18 PM
Ebbie 29 May 10 - 09:32 PM
GUEST,Daddy Paul 30 May 10 - 07:52 AM
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Subject: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: Suegorgeous
Date: 28 May 10 - 02:46 PM

I've just unearthed my old minidisk recorder from the back of a shelf, and I'm going through all the disks. And discovering that a few of the files are valuable bits of recorded songs/music that I'd like to keep, ie on the computer.

A friend's told me I need an obscure bit of software to move files from the disks to a computer.

Is this correct? if so, what is this software, and where could I get it?

Or - does anyone know how else I can extract the files? (in simple language for a non-tecky please!) :)

Many thanks
Sue


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: GUEST,^&*
Date: 28 May 10 - 02:49 PM

If you have or can borrow a modern digital recorder, you should be able to feed the earphone output of the minidisc to the microphone input on the digital recorder and record it as MP3 (or whatever, depending on the recorder). You may need to clean it up afterwards.


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 28 May 10 - 03:53 PM

If you can borrow a Sony MZ-RHI Hi-MD minidisc, you can upload your recordings via USB to your PC using Sony SonicStage software, and save to wav, which can be downloaded free from the Sony site.


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: Barbara Shaw
Date: 28 May 10 - 04:40 PM

Using a male-to-male cable, 1 end goes into the headphone jack on the mini disk recorder, the other end goes into the computer's mic input.

Open up your computer's sound recorder (I use Cool Edit software).

Start the sound recorder and start playing the minidisk, to record what's on the minidisk to your computer's hard drive.

At end, stop both and save the file on the sound recorder.

You can then convert the file to whatever format you want. (My software saves it in wav format, which I then convert to mp3 or CD).

I think there was a thread about this awhile back, but it's quicker to just say it again... Good luck!


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: Bill D
Date: 28 May 10 - 04:55 PM

Like Barbara said... my wife did it with Audacity software,

(be warned...it makes BIG .wav files. Do one, then either convert it or put the file on a CD.)


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: open mike
Date: 28 May 10 - 09:15 PM

the files are already digital,
you just want to transfer them.

hopefully they are labelled sufficiently
and you can recall what is on them, and
catalog them according to a system you
will remember later...chronological?
alphabetical? personell? location?
genre? what folder and what program
will you use to save them to? you
might make a seperate folder in
"my music" if you have such a file.

even real audio, windows media or
"record now" can work to save/transfer
these. These programs often come with
computers. Some players and computers
use optical inputs...but I have no idea
what these are or how they work.

what model of recorder do you have/
and what operation system does your
computer use?


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: Gurney
Date: 28 May 10 - 10:11 PM

Not all recorder's output can be transferred as digital, though.
Although the recorders record in digital (like a computer does,) the older ones often don't OUTPUT a digital signal. Unless there is a digital output from the recorder, the sound must be re-digitised. If you have only earphone or RCA outputs, you need a digitiser program on the computer.
I use 'LP Recorder,' but there are others as good (or maybe better?) It digitises from everything I've tried, LPs, tapes, and minidisks.
LPs need more hardware, though.


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 28 May 10 - 10:43 PM

Some, but possibly not all, computer CD players/recorders have a "second recess" in the tray that will center a smaller disk so that you can read it as a CD. The disk is centered on the spindle once it's picked up and starts to spin, so the recess in the tray only needs to get the disk "close enough" for the spindle to pick it up.

Optical media generally read beginning at the center and scanning outward toward the edge. Ideally, the drive should know what kind of disk you have stuffed into it, so it can stop before it runs off the edge; but I haven't messed with any small disks to know whether the drives can detect the disk type(s) automatically.

Having no knowledge of "mini disks," I have only the vague impression that they may have existed in more than one size, so I can't say that there's even a remote possibility that your CD drive may be able to play your minidisk; but it might be worth looking at whether that might be the case(???????)

Quite possibly, even if the computer drive will spin the disk, you may have to discover and download some ancient codec to actually read the disk, but sometimes the OS can tell you what to look for.

If anyone has any experience with "sub-sized" disks in standard CD drives I'd be quite interested in seeing comments, since - to quote the Stalag Sargeant - "I know nothing!"

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: GUEST,Russ
Date: 28 May 10 - 10:45 PM

What barbara said.

I have a minidisc deck that allows digital transfer to my computer.

I never had a portable minidisk recorder with that capability.

Russ (Permanent GUEST)


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 29 May 10 - 12:18 AM

"experience with "sub-sized" disks in standard CD drives"

I've always been amused by the 'business card'size CDs (apparently you can fit a bootable image of Damn Small Linux (about 40Mb) on them) - but they seem damn hard to find here. I've also noticed the smaller CDs that are intended for Video cameras. Both should play back normally in normal computer drives.


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: Bert
Date: 29 May 10 - 03:55 AM

I just connected the line output from the minidisc to the line input of the computer. Radio Shack should be able to fix you up with a cable to do this.

Download a free copy of Audacity if you need to clean up the files a bit.


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: Geoff the Duck
Date: 29 May 10 - 07:06 AM

JIK - Minidisk was a completely different format from CD. They are a small optical/magnetic storage system with a disc in a small square enclosure, comparable to a reel of tape in a cassette (a bit like a zipdisc but for music). They recorded in their own "lossy" digital format, but the original players would not allow you to move that digital format to a computer. All you could do was output the audio signal and re-record it in real time.
Later expensive players had an option to transfer the digital files, but I never had one of them.
THEN proper digital recording devices arrived and the mini-disk went the same way as the Zip-Drive on a computer.
Quack!
GtD.


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 29 May 10 - 08:14 AM

... and 8 track audio .... sigh ....


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: Richard Mellish
Date: 29 May 10 - 04:44 PM

All else failing you could just take the audio output from a minidisc player and feed it into a microphone input on the computer, but the quality would not be optimum and might be nasty.

If you don't have a minidisc player with a digital output, borrow or buy one. (I bought one on eBay a few years ago.) Then connect that to a digital input on a sound card.

Richard


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: Bernard
Date: 29 May 10 - 05:22 PM

JiK - as Geoff said, the MiniDisk is not to be confused with an 8cm CD... it's a completely different and, sadly, almost obsolete format. It's still favoured by many 'self-contained acts' - those who sing to backing tracks - because they can fit an entire set list on a disc, and rearrange the order on the fly. CDs aren't quite as convenient - and don't usually display the track info, which was another real advantage of the MiniDisk.


The microphone input on most computers is MONO, and is far too sensitive for the headphone output. The socket you should use is normally coloured blue these days, and should be a stereo line input.

Start with the MD volume quite low (almost off) and the line input as high as you can get it.

With a bit of fiddling you should find an audio level that is satisfactory - turn the volume up until it sounds 'gritty' on the louder parts, then turn it down a little until it all sounds clear.

I have a Sony JE780 with USB, but the software only allows me to download files from it for storage until I want to put them on another MiniDisk... which seems rather pointless!

I'll give SonicStage a look at, because it seems unfair that I've got SoundForge (now owned by Sony, and I'm up to version 10!) but I can't offload audio from my MiniDisks for edit unless I use the SPDIF output into my SPDIF sound card and do it in real time...

I gave up on MiniDisk and started using a Marantz PMD660 which records onto a Compact Flash card - it has a USB port, or I can simply use a card reader - and it only takes a couple of minutes for an hour or so of audio.


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: Suegorgeous
Date: 29 May 10 - 07:27 PM

Thanks to all for the advice so far... I'll try your suggesstions out during the week (after I've recovered from an eye infection) and report back.

Unfortunately I don't know anyone else with a minidisk recorder, so I'm lumbered with the (non-USB port) one that I've got, a Sharp. And I intend getting rid of it on Freecycle as soon as I've managed to take off the files I want to keep. It's completely obsolete for me, as I now use a Zoom recorder (so much easier, I love it!).

cheers
Sue


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: Tootler
Date: 29 May 10 - 07:47 PM

You should be able to output from your minidisk via the headphone socket to your Zoom recorder with a lead with a 3.5mm stereo plug on each end. Connect to the line in on your recorder.

I bought one of the late minidisk recorders. It came with Sonic Stage software, but it would only let you download from the minidisk to your computer once and at that only in Sony's proprietary format, so was totally useless. I believe they did later modify it so you could download to the computer as a wav. By the time they did that, I had bought a Edirol R09 and had abandoned the minidisk.

I think the problem at the time was that Sony were so obsessed with preventing copyright violation that it never occurred to them that someone who made their own recordings on the minidisk actually owned the copyright on those recordings. Certainly the instructions that came with the Sonic Stage software all had a feel of that mentality. As a result, they shot themselves well and truly in the foot, because technically the minidisks were very good.


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 29 May 10 - 08:18 PM

Barbara has it. Headphone to mic socket does it. Copy to a program such as Audacity or Audio Cleaning Lab (you may have to attend to the recording level so as to avoid digital clipping, normally by adjusting the volume control on the MD player - find the loudest bit of music on your recordings and set the level from that so as not to exceed the 0db mark on the program's recording console). You can only upload in faster than real time, via USB, with recordings made on HiMD recorders. Otherwise relax, set it going and go and mow the lawn, have a pint or two or make love to someone. By the time you've finished you'll have one huge file that you can enjoy splitting, trimming and enhancing generally.


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: Ebbie
Date: 29 May 10 - 09:32 PM

Hmmmm. I still use Sony minidisk HP Walkman recording equipment and have very good results with it.

The process I use after recording is to listen, usually several times, to the entire disk and mark the tracks. I delete the extraneous stuff.

Then I bring up Sonic Stage and plug the USB cable into the computer. The marked files show up in a list on the right side. I send each track t'other side which process copies it into a wav file.

Then I instruct it to make an audio file and when the button turns green I send them all back to the right side again. (On occasion I listen to an individual track to make sure I want to include it.)

To make sure that the list is in proper sequence I check the time data on each track; if any is out of order I grab it and move it to where it needs to be.

Then I say 'Burn' and voila! I have my CD. Minidisc may be out of date but it works very well and I would hate to do without it.


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Subject: RE: Tech: How do I make minidisk files digital?
From: GUEST,Daddy Paul
Date: 30 May 10 - 07:52 AM

Download the Ask and Record Toolbar (The Old Ask Jeeves) it comes with a "record audio" button and will record anything that is playing on your pc at the time and saves it to mp3. It is free and all you will need to do is to connect your minidisc player and start it playing after you have pressed the aforesaid button and Bobs your uncle. It works, I have recorded about 10 hours from minidisc this way. It will also of course record anything playing online as well youtube, spotify etc but of course I would never do anything like that.


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