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MP3 player

Posted by rkj 
rkj
February 21, 2009 04:00PM
Hi Guys, I just got an intercom for Janet and I that fits in our helmets and on the main box there is a input for an MP3 player. Is there a unit that you can add/remove songs or are all of them one way only?

Thanks, Rick
February 21, 2009 04:24PM
you can add or remove songs from any mp3 player. that is the beauty of them compared to a burnt cd.

what program do you use, if any, to listen to music on your computer? also, how much music do you have?


February 21, 2009 04:37PM
Yup. Of course the most famous of the MP3 players is the iPod. However, I would recommend against any of the MP3 players that use a spinning hard disk, such as the "regular" iPod. They work great for a while, but they inevitably crash after a few years. The rougher you are with them, the shorter their life span. (My own iPod is about 5 years old and on its last legs.) IMHO the flash-based units with no moving parts are more reliable. My daughter's Sansa is one of these, and it's a great device. The iPod Nano is also a good flash-based player. The downside is that they have smaller capacities (I think 32 GB is the largest one I've seen), but depending on how much music you have, that may not be an issue.

For those of us old enough to have grown up with LP collections that took up entire shelves, it's really cool to have all that music and more on something about the size of a pack of gum. B)

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Dave
'91 325iX
February 22, 2009 03:24AM
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Dave_G
For those of us old enough to have grown up with LP collections that took up entire shelves, it's really cool to have all that music and more on something about the size of a pack of gum. B)

i can imagine. I am a music collector myself, so I buy a lot of CDs. They take up a lot of room, but i can't imagine having all those albums on vinyl instead!


February 22, 2009 06:47PM
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daniel
I am a music collector myself, so I buy a lot of CDs. They take up a lot of room, but i can't imagine having all those albums on vinyl instead!
Well, we did get more exercise moving all those boxes of records in and out of college dorm rooms. They were heavy!grinning smiley

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Dave
'91 325iX
February 22, 2009 07:57PM
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Dave_G
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daniel
I am a music collector myself, so I buy a lot of CDs. They take up a lot of room, but i can't imagine having all those albums on vinyl instead!
Well, we did get more exercise moving all those boxes of records in and out of college dorm rooms. They were heavy!grinning smiley

Weight aside; there is no substitute for the sounds that come from vinyl smileys with beer
February 22, 2009 09:43PM
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Archeo-peteriX
Weight aside; there is no substitute for the sounds that come from vinyl smileys with beer
If by that you mean the snaps, crackles, pops, and skips, I say hallelujah for that! winking smiley

You're not the first person I've heard claim that records have superior sound to digital. And with all due respect, I'm forced to respond the same way I've responded to all the other wackos "opinionated individuals" I've known to make the same claim: You're nuts. winking smiley

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Dave
'91 325iX
February 22, 2009 10:19PM
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Dave_G
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Archeo-peteriX
Weight aside; there is no substitute for the sounds that come from vinyl smileys with beer
If by that you mean the snaps, crackles, pops, and skips, I say hallelujah for that! winking smiley

You're not the first person I've heard claim that records have superior sound to digital. And with all due respect, I'm forced to respond the same way I've responded to all the other wackos "opinionated individuals" I've known to make the same claim: You're nuts. winking smiley

This wacko nut job isn't saying that vinyl is superior...only that there is a depth and a warmth in the analog recordings that gets completely filtered out in digital sound tracks. Loud and sharp noise isn't always that great to listen too winking smiley

Snaps, crackles, pops and skips are just wabi and add to the experience grinning smiley
February 23, 2009 03:48AM



February 23, 2009 05:59PM
Not all vinyl goes Snap Crackle Pop. Probably only 20% of my 500 or so vinyls sound that way.

That being said, the sound on the recorded medium is more a function of the recording technique than the playback method, especially classical and jazz.

I have vinyl that sounds better than its digital counterpart (yes, we audiophools get the same recording in different playback modes) and some CDs that sound better than the vinyl. The point is that I can hear the difference. Both the vinyl and the CD, however, sound better than the MP3 versions, especially if stored in the 'compressed' versions.

I guess that I a one of those wackos who is just nuts or can distinguish proper reproduction of full symphony orchestra from the distorted sounds given by poor recording techniques and lousy MP3 playback.

Salut, Bob P.
February 24, 2009 06:51AM
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Bob P 325is 88
I guess that I a one of those wackos who is just nuts or can distinguish proper reproduction of full symphony orchestra from the distorted sounds given by poor recording techniques and lousy MP3 playback.

Salut, Bob P.

As I'm learning in my Coding & Information Theory course I'm taking right now, any lossy compression technique (of which MP3 is one) will cause information to be lost, and once lost, it can never be restored. The point of MP3s, as we've discussed before, is whether the amount of loss is acceptable. Would I want to sit down in my living room and listen to a heavily compressed MP3 version of Abbey Road when I have the CD (or vinyl) right there? No, but if I'm in my car and want to have the whole Beatles library with me, it's a lot easier to have an iPod than a bunch of CDs. And the environment in which I'm listening isn't conducive to a quality auditory experience, so for that situation, the loss is acceptable.

Cab
1990 325i(s)
2004 325XiT
February 24, 2009 09:13AM
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Cab Treadway
Quote
Bob P 325is 88
I guess that I a one of those wackos who is just nuts or can distinguish proper reproduction of full symphony orchestra from the distorted sounds given by poor recording techniques and lousy MP3 playback.

Salut, Bob P.

As I'm learning in my Coding & Information Theory course I'm taking right now, any lossy compression technique (of which MP3 is one) will cause information to be lost, and once lost, it can never be restored. The point of MP3s, as we've discussed before, is whether the amount of loss is acceptable. Would I want to sit down in my living room and listen to a heavily compressed MP3 version of Abbey Road when I have the CD (or vinyl) right there? No, but if I'm in my car and want to have the whole Beatles library with me, it's a lot easier to have an iPod than a bunch of CDs. And the environment in which I'm listening isn't conducive to a quality auditory experience, so for that situation, the loss is acceptable.

Same goes with an I-Pod or portable MP3 player with those ear buds...apart from the amplifier, how much sound can reliably be pumped through those things?

Once we remove a decent pair of speakers and a competent amplifier, a lot of the good stuff is gone anyway sad smiley
Might as well make up for it with volume grinning smiley



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/24/2009 09:13AM by Archeo-peteriX.
February 24, 2009 11:05AM
That's another way... Ruining your ears, so you can't hear the difference any more.
February 24, 2009 01:26PM
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Michiel 318iS
That's another way... Ruining your ears, so you can't hear the difference any more.

Recent studies have shown that the average teen using one of these devices for an average of two hours per day has significant hearing loss especially in the higher frequencies sad smiley
February 24, 2009 01:44PM
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Archeo-peteriX
Recent studies have shown that the average teen using one of these devices for an average of two hours per day has significant hearing loss especially in the higher frequencies sad smiley
Right. In my day, all we had to do was go to one Who concert to get the same effect. winking smiley

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Dave
'91 325iX
February 24, 2009 01:57PM
ipod earbud headphones are garbage. it amazes me at how many people don't buy another pair of headphones to use with their ipod.


rkj
February 24, 2009 02:09PM
So I guess itunes is that same crappy cramped mp3 format then, that's too bad, its so handy.

I get some CDs from the library and then burn them here through itunes; so the cd is in mp3 format, yes?

Yeah Daniel, those ear buds are handy but I could never understand all these people who claim to be all about their music not having a decent pair of headphones. Those dam buds don't stay in my ears nohow eye rolling smiley anyway.

Thanks everybody for the help, really smileys with beer
February 24, 2009 02:36PM
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rkj
I get some CDs from the library and then burn them here through itunes; so the cd is in mp3 format, yes?
No.

The CD is uncompressed digital audio, in a format known as PCM that AFAIK does not really have an analogous computer file format. It is much higher quality audio than MP3. iTunes, or any CD-ripping program, converts the CD's digital audio into something that your computer can interpret and play back. This can be an uncompressed, lossless format like WAV or AIFF, or a compressed, lossy format like MP3 or Ogg Vorbis.

BTW, when you rip a CD to your computer, you can specify the bitrate. The higher the bitrate, the less the compression, the better the sound, and the larger the file size. Typically MP3s seem to be created at 128 kilobits/second, but they sound better at higher bitrates like 196 or 256.

However, as others have mentioned, if you're listening in your car, it doesn't really matter, because all the noise from the engine, road, wind, kids in the back seat, etc. overwhelm any subtle differences in audio quality.

__________
Dave
'91 325iX
February 24, 2009 02:41PM
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rkj
So I guess itunes is that same crappy cramped mp3 format then, that's too bad, its so handy.
Oh, BTW, for anyone interested in music downloads that offer higher quality than you get with MP3, check out http://www.hdtracks.com/. They offer downloads of CD-quality, AIFF or FLAC lossless formats, or 320 kbps MP3 (which is close to CD quality).

iTunes is evil. There are better audio software packages for your computer, and MUCH better places to purchase downloads.

__________
Dave
'91 325iX
rkj
February 24, 2009 03:06PM
Quote
Dave_G
Quote
rkj
So I guess itunes is that same crappy cramped mp3 format then, that's too bad, its so handy.
Oh, BTW, for anyone interested in music downloads that offer higher quality than you get with MP3, check out http://www.hdtracks.com/. They offer downloads of CD-quality, AIFF or FLAC lossless formats, or 320 kbps MP3 (which is close to CD quality).

iTunes is evil. There are better audio software packages for your computer, and MUCH better places to purchase downloads.

itunes is evil?, Whys that Dave?

What is a better piece of software that I can use? please thumbs up

So the cds I burn in itunes are not mp3 files?

Thank You
February 24, 2009 03:29PM
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rkj
itunes is evil?, Whys that Dave?
Until very recently, the music that you download from iTunes was "protected" with Digital Rights Management (DRM) that restricts playing it to the computer that you downloaded it onto, or an iPod. You could not play iTunes on, for example, a Sansa, or any other MP3 player -- just an iPod. Furthermore, iTunes was simply an interusive piece of software on my computer, and until I got rid of it it was constantly trying to assert itself as the only media player on my computer, and subjecting me to obnoxious ads for the iTunes Store. It's the Microsoft of music software.
Quote

What is a better piece of software that I can use? please thumbs up
Personally, I use Media Monkey on my Windows computer. There are lots of other choices that might be a little better, but I've been happy with Media Monkey. It organizes my music library, downloads my podcast subscriptions, and syncs to my iPod with no muss and no fuss.
Quote

So the cds I burn in itunes are not mp3 files?
If you mean putting a blank CD into your computer and creating an audio CD by burning MP3 files from your computer onto the blank, then technically, no they are not MP3s once they are on the CD, but the audio quality will be no better than the MP3 you started with (i.e., not as good as a commercial CD).

If you mean sticking a commercial CD into your computer and ripping the tracks from the CD onto your computer, then what you start with is not an MP3, but what you end up with on your computer IS an MP3. Hope that's not too confusing.

__________
Dave
'91 325iX
rkj
February 24, 2009 04:31PM
Quote
Dave_G
Quote
rkj
itunes is evil?, Whys that Dave?
Until very recently, the music that you download from iTunes was "protected" with Digital Rights Management (DRM) that restricts playing it to the computer that you downloaded it onto, or an iPod. You could not play iTunes on, for example, a Sansa, or any other MP3 player -- just an iPod. Furthermore, iTunes was simply an interusive piece of software on my computer, and until I got rid of it it was constantly trying to assert itself as the only media player on my computer, and subjecting me to obnoxious ads for the iTunes Store. It's the Microsoft of music software.
Quote

What is a better piece of software that I can use? please thumbs up
Personally, I use Media Monkey on my Windows computer. There are lots of other choices that might be a little better, but I've been happy with Media Monkey. It organizes my music library, downloads my podcast subscriptions, and syncs to my iPod with no muss and no fuss.
Quote

So the cds I burn in itunes are not mp3 files?
If you mean putting a blank CD into your computer and creating an audio CD by burning MP3 files from your computer onto the blank, then technically, no they are not MP3s once they are on the CD, but the audio quality will be no better than the MP3 you started with (i.e., not as good as a commercial CD).
If you mean sticking a commercial CD into your computer and ripping the tracks from the CD onto your computer, then what you start with is not an MP3, but what you end up with on your computer IS an MP3. Hope that's not too confusing.[/quote]

Sort of, I'm inserting a normal cd in and putting it on itunes (not downloading it from itunes, I do not do that, if I want music I buy a cd or rent it from the library) and then burning it there to another blank cd-mp3 format?
February 24, 2009 05:37PM
Quote
Cab Treadway
Quote
Bob P 325is 88
I guess that I a one of those wackos who is just nuts or can distinguish proper reproduction of full symphony orchestra from the distorted sounds given by poor recording techniques and lousy MP3 playback.

Salut, Bob P.

As I'm learning in my Coding & Information Theory course I'm taking right now, any lossy compression technique (of which MP3 is one) will cause information to be lost, and once lost, it can never be restored. The point of MP3s, as we've discussed before, is whether the amount of loss is acceptable. Would I want to sit down in my living room and listen to a heavily compressed MP3 version of Abbey Road when I have the CD (or vinyl) right there? No, but if I'm in my car and want to have the whole Beatles library with me, it's a lot easier to have an iPod than a bunch of CDs. And the environment in which I'm listening isn't conducive to a quality auditory experience, so for that situation, the loss is acceptable.

Agreed and also I haven't found a turntable that doesn't skip when going over bumps!:smile:

I have a 'travel' listening rig that consists of Beyerdynamic headphones driven by two monophonic headphone amps that I have modified. The source is a CD player and I carry some 20 CDs (mostly classical and jazz). I use this system when I am 'camped' in the Sahara or in Iran on one of my training projects.
Some have asked why I don't just get an Ipod and get more than 20 hrs (or the equivalent of 2000 songs) of music. The reason is that classical and jazz music played back from a compressed source over my high resolution system is, frankly, unlistenable. And paying 250$ for the capacity to store the equivalent of 20 CDs in a lossless format seems ridiculous to me, even if it saves bulk and weight.

Good listening.

Bob P.
February 24, 2009 06:27PM
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Bob P 325is 88
Agreed and also I haven't found a turntable that doesn't skip when going over bumps!:smile:
Not that they haven't tried:

It seemed like a good idea at the time. smiling smiley

__________
Dave
'91 325iX
February 24, 2009 06:33PM
Quote
Bob P 325is 88
And paying 250$ for the capacity to store the equivalent of 20 CDs in a lossless format seems ridiculous to me, even if it saves bulk and weight.
Actually, $250 would get you a 120GB iPod, which would store roughly 6000-7000 lossless tracks, or about 500-600 CDs worth.

__________
Dave
'91 325iX
rkj
February 24, 2009 08:40PM
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Dave_G
Quote
Bob P 325is 88
Agreed and also I haven't found a turntable that doesn't skip when going over bumps!:smile:
Not that they haven't tried:

It seemed like a good idea at the time. smiling smiley

Hey, if larry endorsed it, it has to be good eye rolling smiley turn on the bubble machine boys smileys with beer
rkj
February 24, 2009 08:45PM
Quote
Dave_G
Quote
rkj
itunes is evil?, Whys that Dave?
Until very recently, the music that you download from iTunes was "protected" with Digital Rights Management (DRM) that restricts playing it to the computer that you downloaded it onto, or an iPod. You could not play iTunes on, for example, a Sansa, or any other MP3 player -- just an iPod. Furthermore, iTunes was simply an interusive piece of software on my computer, and until I got rid of it it was constantly trying to assert itself as the only media player on my computer, and subjecting me to obnoxious ads for the iTunes Store. It's the Microsoft of music software.
Quote

What is a better piece of software that I can use? please thumbs up
Personally, I use Media Monkey on my Windows computer. There are lots of other choices that might be a little better, but I've been happy with Media Monkey. It organizes my music library, downloads my podcast subscriptions, and syncs to my iPod with no muss and no fuss.
Quote

So the cds I burn in itunes are not mp3 files?
If you mean putting a blank CD into your computer and creating an audio CD by burning MP3 files from your computer onto the blank, then technically, no they are not MP3s once they are on the CD, but the audio quality will be no better than the MP3 you started with (i.e., not as good as a commercial CD).

If you mean sticking a commercial CD into your computer and ripping the tracks from the CD onto your computer, then what you start with is not an MP3, but what you end up with on your computer IS an MP3. Hope that's not too confusing.

Hey Dave, will media monkey work like itunes; with radio stations and all the neat things you can do with it?

Thanks for all the info, hanging here is going to school, so cool thumbs up
February 24, 2009 08:58PM
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Dave_G
Quote
Bob P 325is 88
And paying 250$ for the capacity to store the equivalent of 20 CDs in a lossless format seems ridiculous to me, even if it saves bulk and weight.
Actually, $250 would get you a 120GB iPod, which would store roughly 6000-7000 lossless tracks, or about 500-600 CDs worth.

Ah,memory capacity just keeps getting better, but then i would still have to load all those CDs that I already have for 250$. Seems like a waste of money to me. And what do I do about the tapes (yes, good casette recordings of some of my precious vinyl and live performances)? Unfortunately, there isn't a quick way (has to be done in real time) to load a vinyl disc or a tape to any digital medium, lossless or not. I don't have 500 hrs (or 20 hrs for that matter) to waste, when all I am going to gain is a little bit less weight or volume.

my music collection is pretty well set, except for some new jazz, so perhaps I shall look into iPod for downloading lossless digital recordings of Jazz. As long as Classical remains in CD releases, I shall be buying those. Note that I am not buying 'new' vinyl, since most of that is just reissues of the recordings that I already have and the quality is not very good.

Salut, Bob P.
February 25, 2009 12:14AM
if you do end up looking into buying an mp3 player to store lossless tracks, you probably want to steer clear of the ipod (except for the ipod touch). the sound quality of other mp3 players is significantly better than the normal ipod.


February 25, 2009 06:57AM
Quote
rkj
Sort of, I'm inserting a normal cd in and putting it on itunes (not downloading it from itunes, I do not do that, if I want music I buy a cd or rent it from the library) and then burning it there to another blank cd-mp3 format?

The music files on a CD you bought at the store are not MP3 format. When you use iTunes or another program to take files from a CD on to your computer (commonly called "ripping" songs), the files you end up with will be in whatever format you choose. You can heavily compress them to allow you to fit more of them on your computer/iPod/whatever, but that will result in the most loss of the original file. You can specify that the files be converted in a "lossless" format, in which case you do not lose any of the original file, but it will take up just as much space on your computer as it takes on the CD. You trade off sound quality for storage capacity.

So if you have essentially unlimited data storage and just want your music on your computer, you can rip the CDs into lossless files, and then you will essentially be making an exact copy of the complete original file, but storing a few hundred CDs worth of music will consume a lot of disk space. Compressing them allows more music in the same disk space, but the files have some loss. I'd recommend ripping a few songs at different rates, from lossless on down, then listening to them through whatever medium you will be using, and see if the music sounds acceptable to you. If you're just going to listen with the computer's speakers or cheap, low quality headphones, having compressed files may not matter to you.

Now, once the songs are on the computer, what you do with them is up to you. You can turn around and burn them back onto a blank CD, but as I mentioned above, once information is lost, it cannot be recovered. So if you ripped the CD onto the computer using a compression like MP3, when you put that same file onto another CD, you will not get the original file back, it can only be as good as the MP3. If you have a CD player in your car that can play MP3 CDs, this might be okay. You can put a lot more MP3 files on one CD than normal music files. So if you want to have a few physical CDs in your car but have lots of CDs' worth of music, you can do it this way.

Basically, the old rule still applies; there is no free lunch. Importing files onto a player or computer with no loss will take up a lot of memory, and limit the amount of songs you can have. Importing files with compression so you can fit more songs will cause a loss of quality that can never be recovered. Whether or not the loss of quality is acceptable is up to you. I have something like 350 CDs' worth of music on my iPod (more on my laptop), and the quality doesn't bother me, because of how I use the device. But I'm not giving up my CD collection, because I don't want to lose the original songs.

Cab
1990 325i(s)
2004 325XiT
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