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Tech: Playing your digitised music collection

Dave the Gnome 02 Aug 20 - 03:34 AM
John MacKenzie 02 Aug 20 - 04:52 AM
Dave the Gnome 02 Aug 20 - 04:58 AM
GUEST,Nick Dow 02 Aug 20 - 05:06 AM
Bonzo3legs 02 Aug 20 - 05:43 AM
Johnny J 02 Aug 20 - 05:55 AM
GUEST,Ray 02 Aug 20 - 07:14 AM
Bonzo3legs 02 Aug 20 - 09:33 AM
Bonzo3legs 02 Aug 20 - 10:00 AM
GUEST 02 Aug 20 - 10:02 AM
punkfolkrocker 02 Aug 20 - 12:26 PM
GUEST,Hootenanny 02 Aug 20 - 12:49 PM
punkfolkrocker 02 Aug 20 - 01:04 PM
GUEST,jim bainbridge 02 Aug 20 - 01:46 PM
punkfolkrocker 02 Aug 20 - 01:52 PM
DonMeixner 02 Aug 20 - 02:01 PM
punkfolkrocker 02 Aug 20 - 02:11 PM
GUEST,Grishka 02 Aug 20 - 03:02 PM
Richard Mellish 02 Aug 20 - 04:15 PM
Stilly River Sage 02 Aug 20 - 04:16 PM
Bonzo3legs 02 Aug 20 - 04:24 PM
fat B****rd 02 Aug 20 - 05:14 PM
GUEST,Grishka 02 Aug 20 - 05:29 PM
GUEST,Hootenanny 02 Aug 20 - 05:30 PM
Dave the Gnome 03 Aug 20 - 02:39 AM
DaveRo 03 Aug 20 - 03:02 AM
GUEST,crumbly 03 Aug 20 - 04:59 AM
John MacKenzie 03 Aug 20 - 05:48 AM
Bonzo3legs 03 Aug 20 - 08:11 AM
punkfolkrocker 03 Aug 20 - 10:58 AM
David C. Carter 03 Aug 20 - 11:27 AM
GUEST,Jim Ward 03 Aug 20 - 02:06 PM
punkfolkrocker 03 Aug 20 - 02:09 PM
cnd 04 Aug 20 - 07:44 PM
Bonzo3legs 05 Aug 20 - 02:30 AM
Dave the Gnome 05 Aug 20 - 02:58 AM
punkfolkrocker 05 Aug 20 - 12:14 PM
cnd 09 Aug 20 - 09:57 PM
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Subject: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 03:34 AM

With Spotify I now find it difficult to justify buying CDs. If like me, however you have a collection of music that you cannot get online, such as by local folk artists, you may be interested in this.

I rediscovered a couple of old Raspberry Pies that I had tinkered with years ago. Combined with an old 240Gb SSD I have used them to digitize my music. One Pi is now a Plex server sharing the music and more, and the other Pi is now a player I can place anywhere in the house. It's a bit rough and ready and I cannot add another Pi Plex player but I can play through any other network connected device.

The server is a Pi 2B running Raspbian, Samba and Plex Server. The player is a Pi 1B with a speaker plugged into the audio out running RasPlex. Not exactly cutting edge but I enjoyed doing it and getting over the obstacles :-)


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 04:52 AM

I have loaded all my old cassette tapes onto an external drive, via Audacity, and I can take that with me and replay it via most PC music players, wherever I am.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 04:58 AM

Yes, I have done my old cassettes too. I have a copy of all the MP3s on a memory stick in the car as well and I have just found an old iPod nano that I'm sure I'll find a use for :-) This lockdown has had its uses!


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: GUEST,Nick Dow
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 05:06 AM

Amazingly a Cassette of songs that were recorded at the BBC 25 years ago has just surfaced. I thought all of them were lost forever when the Beeb wiped the reel to reel. It's a long story but they were part of a longer project bits of which I still own. So I am attempting to digitise them. I'll look up 'Audacity'. The fact that I have never heard of it is no surprise!


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 05:43 AM

We still have cassette decks so no point in digitising our 100s of cassettes, except my gig recordings, but saved to flac never mp3 so the original is preserved. I still have my reels of Saturday Club sessions recorded in 1964-67 period!


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: Johnny J
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 05:55 AM

"We still have cassette decks so no point in digitising our 100s of cassettes"

I thought that too until I found that my very good deck purchased in the nineties had seized up due to the rubber belt dives perishing! I've had a go at replacing them myself but it's quite a tricky process.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: GUEST,Ray
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 07:14 AM

Anything tape based can also suffer from print through, dropouts and oxide shedding and mechanical devices such as cassettes can malfunction. I have most of my music collection on a Brennan which is backed up to a 500GB hard drive. Apart from that, I still have all my old CDs, records and tapes. The CDs are also digitised in iTunes and backed up to an iPod and an iPad. It’s unwise to store anything dear to you in a single format.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 09:33 AM

iTunes quality is little better than mp3, to say nothing of the hideous software.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 10:00 AM

Johnny J - fortunately our 2 cassette decks are almost new and hardly used.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: GUEST
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 10:02 AM

Most of my CDs are now ripped and copied to my phone. The wonders of Bluetooth mean that they just start playing whenever I start the car.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 12:26 PM

Even if I live another 10 years or more, I've amassed too big a music collection stored away in boxes,
to ever listen to much of it again...

So..

I'm presently enjoying just randomly stumbling across music on youtube and Amazon Prime...

One happy accident yesterday was an early 1960s vaguely remembered novelty instrumental pop band
Nero & the Gladiators;
which indirectly linked to discovering Tommy Steele's brother
Colin Hicks & The Cabin Boys..

So let's see where that trail of long forgotten musical obscurities
takes me today...???

btw.. I'm re-purposing older [wrongly discarded as obsolete]
smartphones and tablets as dedicated music devices..

Some working well enough as midi keyboard controlled synths...


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: GUEST,Hootenanny
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 12:49 PM

I am pretty sure that Nero & the Gladiators was the band that Cyril Davis took over and they became the Cyril Davis All Stars. After Cyril'suntimely death they became The Hoochie Coochie Men bacing Long John Baldry. You can hear what a good job Cyril did if you listen to "Country Line Special" by Cyril Davis, it's on you tube. I was one of the people that handled his bookings.

Re Colin Hicks, we toured him around Scotland back in '62 when I was working in our Dundee office.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 01:04 PM

Hootenanny - wiki says Diz Disley joined 'em at some time in their poorly documented history...


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: GUEST,jim bainbridge
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 01:46 PM

I've got a very bulky old Ferrograph reel to reel & lots of tapes, including some folk/traditional stuff from mid 60s folk clubs, some recorded on the wee Philips machines we all had- some directly on the Ferrograph at after-club house sessions.
Quite apart from digitisation (!) there must be thousands like me who have no time or inclination to do anything about it!


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 01:52 PM

I've got my dad's old Ferrograph 5, and a Uher reel to reel back at my mum's house.
Neither has been powered up for nearly 30 years...

Too risky now, unless a fire extinguisher is at hand...

The Uher came with a box of tapes, a previous owner had recorded radio shows on.
Possibly Pirate stations...???


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: DonMeixner
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 02:01 PM

I buy CD's. Mainly from the artist. When I attend a show at the local and the performance is anywhere in the range of good, I buy what they are selling. I guess I am buying a memory as much as supporting a local performer. I do this also because I saw a friends check for streaming sales. Less than a buck.   Six CD's sold at $10.00 a piece won't buy a new car but it will make the gig profitable.

With minimal investment it is almost impossible not to record a decent track on your home computer and burn a copy of yourself, for yourself.

My two cents.

Don


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 02:11 PM

My mum is knocking on 90..
I'm getting increasingly anxious about the inevitable clearance of her house..

We've already ran out of room in our home
because of my collecting & hoarding since we moved in 20 years ago..

That in itself is a winning argument for a future of music and video cloud storage...


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: GUEST,Grishka
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 03:02 PM

In case someone does not know: an Audio CD is a digital medium and thus need and should not be "digitized" as tapes would. To convert it into a computer file, all you need is a computer with a CD/DVD(-ROM) drive. Push your CD inside and right click on the symbol. If you need more advice, ask us.

Conversion into WAV files is absolutely lossless. Other formats trade quality for storage.

Since CDs tend to deteriorate, your WAV may be even better than your CD will be in ten years.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: Richard Mellish
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 04:15 PM

> Since CDs tend to deteriorate, your WAV may be even better than your CD will be in ten years.

It may. Or it may not. No storage medium is 100% reliable for ever, but pressed CDs are probably better than most.

The big advantage of getting music into computer files is that you can back them up, preferably onto more than one storage medium.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 04:16 PM

Good to know. What do you know about Windows Media Player files (other than they don't play on everything, or at least they didn't used to).


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 04:24 PM

GUEST,Hootenanny - Cyril Davies poached Carlo Little, Rick Brown & another I can't read on the family tree from Screaming Lord Sutch's Savages not Nero & the Gladiators, together with Bernie Watson (former Savage) + another from Cliff Bennett's Rebel Rousers.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: fat B****rd
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 05:14 PM

Bonzo, it was Nicky Hopkins on piano, who went on to play in Cliff Bennet's band
Best regards
Charlie


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: GUEST,Grishka
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 05:29 PM

SRS, if that question was for me, I'm sorry to say I am not an expert. File formats that are sufficiently well documented will probably be playable forever - as opposed to physical stuff such as CDs.

If however you use DRM protected files, you are entirely at the mercy of the issuing company anyway.

Richard Mellish: absolutely agreed. And, by the way, keep social distance, wash your hands and wear a mask etc.

Mudcat has many members who know more than I do, and some others who tend to make risky statements (- can even happen to me and other honest persons).


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: GUEST,Hootenanny
Date: 02 Aug 20 - 05:30 PM

Yep,

You are right they were from Sutch's group. The name you can't read would be piano player Nicky Hopkins who like Cyril sadly died very young.

Apparently when Cyril made it known that he was leaving Alex and going for a more authentic Chicago sound the Sutch guys jumped at it.

Rick Brown (Fenson)


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 03 Aug 20 - 02:39 AM

I started to save to a lossless format but quickly realised that I can't tell the difference between that and MP3. So I have gone for the smaller MP3 format not so much for saving storage but to make them quicker to transfer.

DVDs next...


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: DaveRo
Date: 03 Aug 20 - 03:02 AM

When I started digitising my LPs, in the early 2000s, I had to decide what encoding to use. Hard Disks were too expensive so FLAC was out. AAC was and is better than MP3, but MP3 was and still is usable on more devices: the Nokia phones I used then, and my car radio (it had an 'aux in' socket) could not play AAC. And although both MP3 and AAC were (at the time) proprietary and required a (free) license, so both were unavailable on my Linux computer, open-source MP3 decoders were easier to find and install.

So I used MP3 - initially at 128kbps and later at 192VBR as disks got bigger. I also made a CD of each, so I could theoretically re-encode them at higher quality later. I'd then be able to hear the hiss and crackles more faithfully ;)

AAC was and is Apple's preferred format. I think that itunes produced that by default (I never used it), and as a result it's better supported by other devices, such as car players, than it was when I started.

Windows Media Player used to produce WMA by default, though you could set it to produce MP3 and probably AAC. Both Apple and Microsoft are mainly interested in making you continue to use their own kit. ISTR that both also used a protected 'DRM' version of AAC or WMA which would only play in their players.

My choice if I were starting today would be a lossless coding: FLAC. But you might have to convert it to MP3 or AAC to play it on a phone. If you mainly use Apple kit you might choose ALAC instead, whuch us Apple's lossless format.

I play my collection from a Pi too, connected to the 'hifi' (as we used to call it) or aound the house on a mobile device.

Music transmitted between a mobile device and a bluetooth speaker is also encoded, i.e re-encoded, and many bluetooth speakers (like my kitchen radio) use a very low-quality encoding called SBC. So if you end up listening to it that way you might buy a speaker (and a phone) which suports higher-quality bluetooth transmission such - see here.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: GUEST,crumbly
Date: 03 Aug 20 - 04:59 AM

where can I get some steel needles for my gramophone?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 03 Aug 20 - 05:48 AM

"Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: GUEST,crumbly - PM
Date: 03 Aug 20 - 04:59 AM

where can I get some steel needles for my gramophone?"
Loads on EBay.

I remember seeing/hearing Cyril Davies at Eel Pie Island, and Country Line Special was a fixture on the juke box, in the café where I mis-spent a lot of my youth, L'Auberge in Richmond Surrey.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 03 Aug 20 - 08:11 AM

Pity that no live recordings of the "Savages" line up of Cyril Davis R & B All Stars have ever surfaced - they were shit hot. When seeing Carlo Little & Rick Brown with Sutch they were deafening even with unmic'd drums!


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 03 Aug 20 - 10:58 AM

Lossy or lossless...???

If you are digitising for your own personal convenience and enjoyment,
then it's your choice...

But if carefully digitising for archival purposes, and to be shared with other music enthusiasts,
then it must be lossless..
At least CD quality 16 bit 44.1 kHz.

The merits of digitising to more rarified high-resolution Audiophile quality,
are debatable for amateurs;
and again, a personal choice...


For me the choice is somewhat academic at present,
because my current family circumstances restrict my music listening
mostly to Amazon Echo devices and portable speakers in the kitchen and bathroom...

All my fancy High Quality Audio gear is gathering dust,
while stressful parental care commitments dominate my life...

So like it or lump it,
I've had to drop all audiophile principles/pretensions
until...??????


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: David C. Carter
Date: 03 Aug 20 - 11:27 AM

The Eel Pie Island,where you had to cross a footbridge to get to the

club house.And pay a penny to two elderly ladies to cross.

Maybe they're still there!


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: GUEST,Jim Ward
Date: 03 Aug 20 - 02:06 PM

First time I went to Eel Pie you had to get into a boat and pull yourself across with a pielce of rope! Sunday nights with Cyril Davis All Stars, Long John and the Velvettes, a bar with a dozen or more real ales and with a bit of luck, nookie in the long grass - Those were the days.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 03 Aug 20 - 02:09 PM

I really envy you guys who were there witnessing the birth of British Rock..

My earliest musical memories as an infant in the early 1960s,
were singing along to Adam Faith's "What Do You Want" on the family radiogram;
and queuing up at an ice cream van,
while Billy Fury's "In Summer" played on a transistor radio...

I echo Bonz's plea for unknown live tapes to turn up for digitising,
before it's too late...


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: cnd
Date: 04 Aug 20 - 07:44 PM

Dave, your setup sounds much nicer than mine! I just run an output from my receiver to a laptop with Audacity installed -- it works just like recording from a record to a cassette tape, but your computer is the location the music goes to.

Organizing it and playing it is another problem.

For years I've been talking about getting a dedicated desktop/laptop etc to use for music since it's gradually been taking up more and more memory on my computer (currently about 110 GB with just under 10,000 files, but still growing). I find it easy to set a record/cassette on, go and do a chore for 15-20 minutes and come back to flip it over or start a new recording.

I originally organized my music in lots of folders, split up by artist and album and had each song split as individual tracks like that. As the size of the folders grew, Windows Media Player had more and more "cache" issues and would frequently mix up album art, take a while in recognizing newly added tracks, etc.

Now, I keep (almost) all of my digitized audio in one large folder and use a program called Clementine to listen to it. It's a neat music player that can be powerful to use, but it does take some getting used to when compared to more straightforward music players (mainly WMP). The main benefits include "smart" playlists (where you can make the playlist automatically add new songs that meet certain specified criteria) and that it's good about properly reading files, even large amounts.

--------------------------------------------------

For all the doubters -- converting your music is worthwhile. While it may not be as high a quality as the original (depending on what file you use) I find the convenience of being able to listen to obscure songs I can't listen to on YouTube, Spotify, etc. With that being said, I'll advise that you should only convert if it's worth the hassle: if the record/cassette you're holding is already (readily) available on the internet, don't bother -- save 30+ minutes and convert another one.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 05 Aug 20 - 02:30 AM

Thankfully all my DAT recordings I did of The Mysteries in 1999-2000 are on CD, but not copied digitally which I can do now using a diy digital connector for my Sony D7 - cost was a few pence, compared with the Sony connector which was £120 + !!!


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 05 Aug 20 - 02:58 AM

Raspberry Pi with Plex and an SSD could fulfil your requirement for a dedicated music server, cnd. Cheap enough nowadays. You will need a powered USB hub but that can act as power for the Pi as well.

Having just typed that I checked the price of the new Pies. Not that cheap nowadays! Maybe one of those tiny PCs would suit better. I suppose I was lucky having stuff lying about :-)


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 05 Aug 20 - 12:14 PM

Maybe take a look at the cheap android TV boxes on Amazon/ebay..

Basicaly, the components of a smartphone in a box..
.. with Bluetooth, USB, ethernet, and HDMI connections;
for only 20 to 30 quid...

.. well, I never paid more than that for a good reliable one
with with 2GB RAM...


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Subject: RE: Tech: Playing your digitised music collection
From: cnd
Date: 09 Aug 20 - 09:57 PM

Thanks for that Dave, that's actually a really good idea. Unfortunately, Raspberry Pi's are currently a bit above my pay grade, but hey, it's always good to learn a new skill, right?


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