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  #1  
Old 2004-12-02, 04:56 AM
e6003 e6003 is offline
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Burning direct from compressed files

OK, this might seem a daft question, but when does that stop me Another trading site forum I frequent has people saying that they always extract the FLAC/SHN/whatever to WAV before burning an audio CD with it (as opposed to, say, using the Nero FLAC or SHN plugins). One post in particular says "too many problems" can occur burning direct from the compressed files - however no-one has clarified exactly what those problems were! So, tapping into the amazing range of tech knowledge here - is there anything wrong with burning from lossless files, and any particular pitfalls to be aware of? Obviously, I keep the FLACs/SHNs on DVD-R for future trades. I'm mostly using the appropriate plugins for decoding SHN, FLAC and APE from cd-rw.org for Nero 5.5.26 under Win 2K SP4.
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  #2  
Old 2004-12-02, 06:01 AM
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Karst Karst is offline
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Re: Burning direct from compressed files

It can cause problems as the burner software will basically see it as a data CD. That way it cannot play in most stereo equipment. Also, the plugins will not actually convert the files so you are burning a compressed audio file for playback. The main reason for compression is convenience and ensuring that recording do not get altered while being spread. It was never really intented for playback.
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  #3  
Old 2004-12-02, 06:19 AM
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Re: Burning direct from compressed files

Did this happen to you, Karst? I've never heard of this before.
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  #4  
Old 2004-12-02, 06:37 AM
wazoo2u wazoo2u is offline
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Re: Burning direct from compressed files

As you know, Nero has plugins for both FLAC and SHN files. What this means is that Nero will decompress the files into .WAV "on the fly" (probably buffered) as it's writing to disk. The obvious advantage is that it saves time.

The disadvantages:

1) if your computer's drive subsystems aren't optimized, the extra disk thrashing can cause buffer underruns, which produce coasters.

2) It's VERY unusual to find a compressed archive set that's edited exactly to your liking. Even TAO compilations will have uneven or long pauses at song start/stops, which means you need to decompress to .WAV, and lay out the tracks.

So if your system is up to the task, and the compressed files are to your liking, there's no reason you can't burn directly and get a CDA audio disk as the result.
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  #5  
Old 2004-12-02, 07:27 AM
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Re: Burning direct from compressed files

Quote:
Originally Posted by Five
Did this happen to you, Karst? I've never heard of this before.
I have a Viao and the output has limits to it being customised. I got one dud due to this - it did burn but would not play in my 2 year old Sony Discman. I personally wouldn't trust the Nero decompression. I tend to use stand alone decompressors, cue up in either audio editing program/iTunes after checking and then burn at 1x to a TY disc. I've yet to find a drive that spits out the disc this way.

When I checked the dud disc it basically had the .shn files on it with some icon files. Changing the setup on the Viao seemed impossible - all audio was geared towards the SonicStage setup. Only now after a reinstall of the operating system (due to an unrelated failure) and the latest version of iTunes it can be by-passed.
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  #6  
Old 2004-12-02, 07:56 AM
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Re: Burning direct from compressed files

hmm... well, if the disc had the .shn files on it then it wasn't burned as an audio disc by some fluke. I gotta agree, the safest way is to decompress to WAV, especially if your processor is less than top of the line. Computers are funny things, everyone finds what works for them thru trial and error and it isn't always what we expect it to be. I always burn from WAV files simply because I hardly ever do it and I never could be bothered to get those silly plugins to work.

Oh, btw I just wanted to recommend EAC as the best program to burn audio cdrs with. All of my burns with it have been perfect. And, of course, it is #1 to extract with!
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  #7  
Old 2004-12-02, 08:19 AM
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RainDawg RainDawg is offline
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Re: Burning direct from compressed files

Quote:
Originally Posted by wazoo2u
1) if your computer's drive subsystems aren't optimized, the extra disk thrashing can cause buffer underruns, which produce coasters.
Wazoo is right, but let me add to this that you can enable buffer underruns, but it will ruin your audio CD by insterting little clicks in the audio if it is activated. Always turn buffer underrun off with Nero, if it ruins the disc then you know you're going to fast or trying to do too much with your computer (IE decoding on the fly). If you make a burn without buffer underrun, and it completes, I see no reason to think the disc is flawed.

That bug karst reported is extremely odd...I've never heard of it happening. Is it possible you accidentally told it to burn as a data disc instead of an audio disc? That's the only way I could see that happening....
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  #8  
Old 2004-12-02, 08:30 AM
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Re: Burning direct from compressed files

...and just to state the obvious, don't run other applications when you're burning an audio cdr.
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  #9  
Old 2004-12-02, 08:30 AM
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Cyndiotta Cyndiotta is offline
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Re: Burning direct from compressed files

Quote:
Originally Posted by Five

Oh, btw I just wanted to recommend EAC as the best program to burn audio cdrs with. All of my burns with it have been perfect. And, of course, it is #1 to extract with!


I've been using that to burn also Five...glad to know some else is also having good luck using EAC !
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  #10  
Old 2004-12-02, 09:18 AM
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Karst Karst is offline
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Re: Burning direct from compressed files

I tried to burn through EAC but that caused problems - extraction is fine but the integrated software has problems with its settings and seems to default. All the recent Viao's have been geared towards the setup for SonicStage and online downloads - I suppose it is just a slight awkward quirk that comes out of it.
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  #11  
Old 2004-12-02, 09:54 AM
e6003 e6003 is offline
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Re: Burning direct from compressed files

Interesting points you raise about disabling BURNProof whilst writing audio CDs. I have a Plextor CD-RW 4012A and a Sony DRU500A (DVD-RW). It seems to be a common feature of Plextors that they require far more CPU time than other makes - the Sony is far better in this respect. Neither will burn at speeds lower than 4x. Sometimes the Plextor will under-run according to Nero, even at the lowest burning speed, and the buffer seemingly can't keep up. This is with a few background tasks running on the computer (an Athlon XP1800+, 512 MB) but nothing else. I optimised my hard drives under Windows 2000 recently as well. The Sony is fine under similar conditions and I could turn its buffer protection off. This is when burning direct from the compressed files. Rather weird but I'm using Windows through sufferance until I can scrape together enough pennies to buy SuSE Linux 9.2. Most of my burning is for personal use, however I do occasionally get backward folk who won't trade as files on DVD-R I will bear this useful advice in mind for the next time I'm doing a trade CD-DA burn.
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  #12  
Old 2004-12-03, 08:06 PM
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feralicious feralicious is offline
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Re: Burning direct from compressed files

I've heard that Nero is prone to introducing diginoise so I don't bother with it. I use EAC for all my audio burning, which is minimal, as it seems to be the choice of the trading community from the research I did about a year ago.

I also read an interesting article on burn speeds, which I'll have to see if I bookmarked to find a link, that said that the optimal burning speeds for both error free burning and longevity are 4x and 8x. There were tests done where they recreated the aging process and also looked at how deep the burn was and how accurate the data was and that's what they found. Any faster burning doesn't burn as deep and the slower burns actually produced lesser quality.

I generally burn audio at 4x and data at 8x unless it's on my DVD then I burn at 4x cuz that's my max.
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  #13  
Old 2004-12-07, 12:05 AM
eburks
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Re: Burning direct from compressed files

I too use EAC often to burn but it will not write to some Burners

As far as the plugins go for burning compressed files (as CDA) to a disc. The reason I do not use them is 4 fold

possible glitches during decomp/burn

At least when I checked out what Nero was doing a few years ago... it just made a copy of ALL the wave files in a temp folder then deleted them all when it was done burning. I prefer control over the process and like to test my waves before burning.

If you have a problem you could end up with some big temp files that you would have to go back and delete (not good for the novice)

Finally I can then burn 1 copy and listen to it then make other copies from the waves that I manually extracted. Could save drive wear and tear and fragmentation verses letting the plugin decode each time.

YMMV

Last edited by eburks; 2004-12-07 at 12:10 AM.
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  #14  
Old 2004-12-07, 04:47 AM
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Karst Karst is offline
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Re: Burning direct from compressed files

Quote:
Originally Posted by feralicious
I also read an interesting article on burn speeds, which I'll have to see if I bookmarked to find a link, that said that the optimal burning speeds for both error free burning and longevity are 4x and 8x. There were tests done where they recreated the aging process and also looked at how deep the burn was and how accurate the data was and that's what they found. Any faster burning doesn't burn as deep and the slower burns actually produced lesser quality.

http://www.cdrfaq.org/faq03.html#S3-31
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  #15  
Old 2004-12-10, 03:25 AM
marshmellow marshmellow is offline
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Re: Burning direct from compressed files

I've been using the Burrrn program http://www.burrrn.net/ for the past year or so and had no problems or 'coasters'. Basically, I keep/archive all my music in a lossless format for trading and storing. Any show I want to have in audio/wav format, I just drag the compressed files into the Burrrn program, it converts the files and then burns them to disc. These discs are for my own personal use, and if I were to trade in audio/wav then I'd probrably want to use the appropriate converter/decoder (like mkw for shn or Flac Frontend for Flac) first and then use a reliable burning program to burn to disc (and not running any programs in the background).
I haven't had any discs turn out bad with Burrrn though, no glitches or artifacts, and I've done that while I've got many programs running.
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