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Omni?s Software Extravaganza (music Edition).

Okay so everyone processes their music differently due to the device used for playback. I personally get most my listening done while sitting at work for nine hours a day and secondly while in my car during my two hour round trip commute. At work I like to use iTunes as it was compatible with my iPod (R.I.P.). I also use iTunes because it?s simply very capable with extremely large libraries and I?ve never had a problem with it. In my newest car I am relegated to MP3/WMA disks as I cannot afford a third party USB adapter at this point. Using a ?better? media player with a large codec library isn?t always the answer either because then you?re library is comprised of so many file formats it becomes unwieldy when conformity is needed. When downloading music (legally of course) it comes in a variety of file formats and even though best quality is always preferable the amount of space you have to deal with will not always accommodate the space needed for such a large number of over sized files. When this happens and a simple 70+ minute CD is not acceptable software becomes the answer. I personally can?t stand purchasing a do-it-all suite of software as they are usually way over priced and Suites usually only do a few things well and many things not so well. The answer when you?re a picky sonofabitch like me is freeware. Generally MP3 is the way we want to go, at higher bit rates it tends to have an acceptable sound quality and when balanced with it?s vastly superior compatibility with both devices and players will give you the least amount of headaches. The primary reason for this list is I see questions on this stuff every once in a while and I?d like to have a list I and perhaps others can refer them too.
1James Blake
Enough Thunder

Players: iTunes, Windows Media Player, Mediamonkey, Winamp and
songbird. I have used all of these at least once and they all get high marks
for the most part. First thing I do upon install of any media player is go to
the ripping options and setup a custom rip Scheme so all disks get ripped at
320kbps it is a bit of over kill and you can select lower if storage space is an
issue however I suggest no lower than 192kbps.
2Jethro Tull
Songs From The Wood

File compression (.ZIP .RAR): jzip, 7-zip, winrar, Peazip. When downloading
files they are almost always compressed. All of these file compression tools
work well and can handle a host of file types. I personally use jzip. The
most common file types are RAR and ZIP and this handles both admirably
although there is limited support for RAR files it?s nothing you?ll miss.
3The Allman Brothers Band
The Allman Brothers Band

File conversion .m4p: This can be tricky depending on what you are looking
for. M4p is an apple format for iTunes and many files will come in this format
but if you want to do anything with the file outside of iTunes it can be a real
pain in the ass. A truly freeware based solution can be annoying to find
with a simple google search. I use ?Free M4a to MP3 Converter? by
ManiacTools. There are many programs with this exact same name but this
one is truly free and clean of bullshit and fully customizable.

File Conversion .FLAC: There used to be back assed way to do this with
Winamp but it is a real pain in the ass and I only ever did it out of
necessity. I now use ?Free FLAC to MP3 Converter? by PolySoft Solutions.
It is simple and it is quick however you cannot change any settings and it
only converts to Veriable Bit Rate (VBR). The downside being that you?re
taking this awesome lossless file and converting it to a much lower quality.
The upside is that the file you are converting is generally going to be of a
high enough quality that it will still sound good and a 278mb album
becomes a 68mb album.
5Brian Eno
Here Come the Warm Jets

File Splitting: Sometimes the file is so large that a host will not accept it and
the uploading party is then forced to ?Split? the file into multiple smaller files
to conform to the host?s standard. The files at this point individually or not
re-compiled. You will recognize these files because after the .zip it will then
have a number causing your Compression software (see #2) to not
recognize the file type e.g. Sit HJ-Split seems to be the
software of choice for this. I have used it a few times and it worked
Profanation (Preperation For An Upcoming Darkness)

Cleanup: There is no way you can play with this many files in this many
formats all the time without accumulating a bit of a mess over time.
Whether it?s the compressed files in your download folder, the .FLAC files
you unzipped to a temp folder (because converters work much faster when
the source and the end location are on different drives), or because you?re
just an un-organized fuck tard (A.K.A. kid). Here to assist with your clean up
or just to find out where all of your drive space has gone (Pr0n) I
recommend WinDirStat. It will tell you which folders are taking up the most
space and let you explore to your heart?s content until you have freed up
the disk space desired. It even gives you a nice little color chart for a visual
representation of just HOW much Pr0n you actually have.
Green Naugahyde

Clean up 2: The other suggestion I would like to make is that with the files
you are constantly adding to your computer your drive is going to be more
fragmented than that bottle of sand art you made at the fair when you
were 12. Solution: Disk Defrag Screen Saver by Auslogics. Every time your
computer goes into screensaver mode it will defrag your drive for you bit by
bit so you are never too far out of whack and your computer stays as
nimble as possible. I have yet to get this to work with Windows 7 however
I have not tried the newest build either. It works flawlessly on XP though.
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