Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

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Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby geriboy » Mon Apr 09, 2012 10:35 am

Good day and Happy Easter to all of you! I posted this inquiry at headphiles, and would like to repost this question here at wiredstate as well.

Currently, I have a simple audio setup at my apartment: a pair of locally-made bookshelf speakers, connected to a tube pre-amp and power amplifier. I also use an external DAC as well. I use my laptop as my audio source. Most of my music files are FLAC based, and I have a couple of CDs stored as image files. I don't have a standalone CD player and my laptop has a broken CD drive. I copy my CDs as image files (.iso files, for example) and access them via an emulator program (i.e. Daemon tools Lite) and play them using foobar.

how does this [using CD image files and accessing them via an emulator program] compare with the following:

(1) playing CDs on standalone CD players?
CD player ---> digital output ---> DAC ---> pre-amp/amp/speakers
PC ---> USB->SPDIF interface or digital output --> DAC --> pre-amp/amp/speakers


(2) playing CDs through the laptop's (or computer's) optical drive?

(3) playing FLAC files vs. CD image files?

thanks!
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby Gino » Mon Apr 09, 2012 12:43 pm

Mount the cd images and rip into Flac. That way you do away with potentially degrading algorythm.
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby arnoldc » Mon Apr 09, 2012 1:48 pm

Is your equipment hi-res enough to even reproduce the difference?
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby geriboy » Mon Apr 09, 2012 1:56 pm

Gino wrote:Mount the cd images and rip into Flac. That way you do away with potentially degrading algorythm.


someone commented that both CD images and FLAC files are both "lossless". eto rin po yung assumption ko, na walang difference between them. although I haven't been able to do some comparisons.

arnoldc wrote:Is your equipment hi-res enough to even reproduce the difference?


hindi ko alam, sir arnold. here's a list of my gears for your reference:
- M2tech hiface USB-SPDIF interface (or converter?)
- Buffalo-II DAC
- JojoD's babyT tube pre-amp
- JojoD's babyG power amp
- A-audio Daniel bookshelf speakers
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby arnoldc » Mon Apr 09, 2012 2:24 pm

+1 on Gino's recommendation.
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby geriboy » Mon Apr 09, 2012 2:40 pm

thank you po sir Gino and sir arnold :)
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby [L]es » Mon Apr 09, 2012 7:07 pm

geriboy wrote:Good day and Happy Easter to all of you! I posted this inquiry at headphiles, and would like to repost this question here at wiredstate as well.

Currently, I have a simple audio setup at my apartment: a pair of locally-made bookshelf speakers, connected to a tube pre-amp and power amplifier. I also use an external DAC as well. I use my laptop as my audio source. Most of my music files are FLAC based, and I have a couple of CDs stored as image files. I don't have a standalone CD player and my laptop has a broken CD drive. I copy my CDs as image files (.iso files, for example) and access them via an emulator program (i.e. Daemon tools Lite) and play them using foobar.

how does this [using CD image files and accessing them via an emulator program] compare with the following:

(1) playing CDs on standalone CD players?
CD player ---> digital output ---> DAC ---> pre-amp/amp/speakers
PC ---> USB->SPDIF interface or digital output --> DAC --> pre-amp/amp/speakers


(2) playing CDs through the laptop's (or computer's) optical drive?

(3) playing FLAC files vs. CD image files?

thanks!



rip them to .wav.
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby geriboy » Mon Apr 09, 2012 8:11 pm

[L]es wrote:rip them to .wav.


rip from where: from the CD --> wav, or from CD image --> wav (as similarly suggested by Gino and arnoldc)?
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby JoeyGS » Tue Apr 10, 2012 10:14 am

If you can do it direct from the CD...better..... and less one step

geriboy wrote:
[L]es wrote:rip them to .wav.


rip from where: from the CD --> wav, or from CD image --> wav (as similarly suggested by Gino and arnoldc)?
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby muypogi » Tue Apr 10, 2012 11:27 am

geriboy wrote:Good day and Happy Easter to all of you! I posted this inquiry at headphiles, and would like to repost this question here at wiredstate as well.

Currently, I have a simple audio setup at my apartment: a pair of locally-made bookshelf speakers, connected to a tube pre-amp and power amplifier. I also use an external DAC as well. I use my laptop as my audio source. Most of my music files are FLAC based, and I have a couple of CDs stored as image files. I don't have a standalone CD player and my laptop has a broken CD drive. I copy my CDs as image files (.iso files, for example) and access them via an emulator program (i.e. Daemon tools Lite) and play them using foobar.

how does this [using CD image files and accessing them via an emulator program] compare with the following:

(1) playing CDs on standalone CD players?
CD player ---> digital output ---> DAC ---> pre-amp/amp/speakers
PC ---> USB->SPDIF interface or digital output --> DAC --> pre-amp/amp/speakers


(2) playing CDs through the laptop's (or computer's) optical drive?

(3) playing FLAC files vs. CD image files?

thanks!


Having a digital front end myself, I rip from CD using Apple Lossless, and just store the CD for archival purposes. Whatever ripper you use, always use error correction, if available, and try to limit the CPU usage by just concentrating on the ripping process, so wala munang CPU intensive programs na bukas.

Why the need to use image files, when ripping just takes about 2-5 minutes, and you can add metadata and album art pa (by default if you rip via iTunes and may active web connections ka, as iTunes automatically references your CD with an online CD database, complete with album art)? Get a decent outboard DVD burner connect via firewire or USB and you're ready to rip and store the CD.

My setup:

Macbook via iTunes streaming wirelessly through either my Apple TV or Airport Express, then to a DAC then to my amp connected to my speakers.

You need to have a decent source (your media files) IMHO to start, before you think of upgrading any of the components in your playback chain. Try ripping via any of the lossless formats (Apple Lossless, AIFF, WAV, FLAC lossless) and see which one you prefer.
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby geriboy » Sat Apr 14, 2012 6:57 am

thanks for the comments, sir JoeyGS and sir muypogi.

[post edited]
Last edited by geriboy on Sat Apr 14, 2012 9:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby Gino » Sat Apr 14, 2012 9:00 am

"I borrow audio CDs from some of my friends and copy them and save them into image (.iso) files, contemplating whether to rip them into lossless files (flac was my initial consideration), play the image files in my PC audio setup, or burn the image files and play the CDs through a standalone CD player (which I don't have)."

This is called piracy. Please, spare this forum or any other forum from such admissions. Buy your own cds. THAT will be a better option.
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby geriboy » Sat Apr 14, 2012 9:07 am

to sir Gino and to the mods of this forum: i'm sorry for my previous post :(
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby thebrioman » Sat Apr 14, 2012 12:39 pm

they say the more process it takes to play music degrades sq. totoo b ito.

sample;

img to emulator then player

or flac and alac to player

or wav and aiff to player - eto less process since uncompressed
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Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby docsialu » Sun Apr 15, 2012 7:59 am

One might sound different to the other, but the difference could be very subtle. Dont worry so much about it. Unless your system could really express these subtle differences ;)


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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby Gino » Sun Apr 15, 2012 10:57 am

To me if I am labored to AB test two setups then choosing one over the other doesn't matter. I only act on obviously better or offensive reproduction.
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby rtsyrtsy » Sun Apr 15, 2012 1:11 pm

I've not tried playing (essentially) WAVs from a CD disk image. But in theory, the computer does more work--first reading the WAVs from the disk image and then playing the WAV. My experience in computer-based playback suggests that the less work the computer does, the better the sound. Or at least, you don't get clicks, dropped signals, etc. that is usually the effect of a computer doing many things simultaneously.

I used to rip to FLAC and now rip to ALAC. I did not go with WAV since there media playback and management software I like do not make it easy to tag and keep thousands of CDs organized. More importantly, storage was not as cheap as it is today when I started ripping my CD collection.

I switched from FLAC to ALAC not because of sonic improvements (my perhaps not resolving enough system prevents me from hearing) but because I switched from a mostly Windows environment to a mostly Mac eco-system.

I hope this helps.
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby egay » Sun May 13, 2012 9:31 am

i now play most of my digital media via a multimedia player and i find WAV files sound better than FLACs. WAVs 'seems' to retain what the original CDs reproduce while FLACs sound sharp, too direct, and dry :sweat: the decays are simply not there... even if i stream my FLACs (in my Mac) via wired LAN or WiFi the results are the same :worried: ...perhaps ALAC maybe a good answer :?:

i suppose it has something to do with my system and i don't like it.
well, i do maintain FLACs and MP3s due to playback needs (i.e. car, iPod, etc); but i try to maintain WAVs for my main system.

EMULATOR: follow the initial recommendations - rip and don't use emulators so you'll have better SQ (and less system work).

enjoy!

.e.
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby geriboy » Sun May 13, 2012 11:29 am

I never thought of using WAV as a music digital format.

thank you all for your replies and suggestions :)
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Re: Use of CD image files and emulator program as audio "source"

Postby Benok » Thu May 24, 2012 1:04 pm

wav is analog... or somewhat analog
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