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I rip and burn classical music CDs now and then with Windows Media Player 11, on Windows XP Pro, SP2. I use the "WMA Lossless" setting for ripping, and "Slow" for burning, figuring these settings will probably give me the best quality for ripping and burning. Here are my questions:

  1. Are those settings the right ones to use in order to get the best possible ripping and burning quality with WMP?

  2. What other CD rippers and burners--whether free or commercial--are there out there that may deliver even better quality than WMP?

Many thanks for answering my questions,

NT

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There are many other questions on SU covering #2, such as superuser.com/questions/2100/… –  Kara Marfia Jul 17 '10 at 1:23

2 Answers 2

The quality is limited by the source (CD). Thus you won't ever be able to get higher than CD quality even if you upscale. Losless means that there is no information lost due to compression, you may lose some quality during the sampling (must be resampled to be encoded into any file).

As far as the burn speed goes you haven't mentioned what you are burning to disk. Are you burning the losless WMA files, or an audio disk? If it's the files then the burn speed doesn't matter it's digital and will either work 100% or not.

If the end result is another audio disk then you might be best off just using a product like Nero or any other somewhat advanced CD burning software. They usually have a copy feature which I would imagine would have the best results (as it doesn't have to go through multiple steps, I assume it is an exact copy).

I hope this answers your question satisfactorily.

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IMO flac is a good bet for high quality CD ripping - installing open codecs should allow you to use it with WMP. MOST rippers use ffmpeg for flac, so, pretty much anything will work, but i have a soft spot for bonkencode. Alternately many people swear by EAC - which does "perfect" copies, but i think may require you to convert from wav to flac or other formats

Finally, while the devs deny it makes a difference, many audiophiles swear by foobar2000 - a customisable but simple audio player , and use it with ASIO or other alternate output methods. Least on my hardware, ASIO makes a HUGE difference - YMMV - if you don't have a card with native ASIO suppport you can try asio4all

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