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I have a 48x CD-ROM read internal drive in my PC with a phenom x6 1100t processor running Windows 7. I can't understand why iTunes only rips CDs at about 5-7x. The processor, RAM and HDD aren't breaking sweat.

This in comparison to my 2009 white MacBook which rips at about 8-15x.

I was wondering if there was a way to increase the speed, I buy a lot of CDs and it is quite irritating. I use the AAC format (320 kbps) and an iPhone so I think I'm stuck with iTunes if I want to maintain music quality, space and compatibility.

Any help would be much appreciated


The drive is a DVD-RW, I was quoting the CD-ROM read speed. The drive is this one:

Samsung SH-222AB 22x DVD±RW DL & RAM SATA Optical Drive - OEM Black

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Maybe you optical drive is a POS. Or your CDs are damaged, or the encoder is crappy software. You could try ripping with a different app just to try to isolate components involved and look for performance variances. – Doc Jan 4 '12 at 23:54
Do you have (or had) any virtual CD software installed? – grawity Jan 5 '12 at 0:08
up vote 1 down vote accepted

I agree it could be an old drive, or bad media, both of those can be valid explanations, though how old can it be, a phenom 1100t was only released Dec 2010 or so. The motherboard would have to be in that era sometime, and MOST have phased out PATA, so it cant be THAT old of a "CD-ROM", can it? It would have to be at least SATA yes? Anake do you know? Because if it is, and especially if you are sharing an IDE cable between the HDD and the CDROM or something could cause serious slow down. Though it just doesnt seem posible on a system as modern as this.

The other explanation is error correction might be enabled. Edit -> Preferences -> Click "Import Settings" and see if the "Use error correction when reading CDs" check box is checked. As far as i can remember, even when its not actively needing to error correct, this still slows ripping considerably.

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Yeah I built the computer, the drive uses a SATA connection. Please see my edit about the drive. Error correction was on, and turning that off improved my rip speed to approx. 16x, thanks. iTunes is probably the problem, I will look into alternatives. – Anake Jan 5 '12 at 10:27

A "48x CD-ROM" sounds really, really old. Spend $20 and get a modern DVD-RW drive and you'll be ripping at 30x and greater.

Or try using "FreacPortable" (the old name was BonkEnc) and see if that rips better than iTunes. Freac will let you configure your codec however you like, and it certainly can produce iTunes and iPhone compatible MP3s, (or AACs if you are dead set upon that format for some reason.)

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OP should try a dedicated ripping software just to confirm the old slow drive theory, but it may be just that. Also, OP can perhaps keep both drives and rip 2 CDs at once (I don't think iTunes supports that, but many softwares do). – mtone Jan 5 '12 at 0:10
Sorry it is a DVD-RW, I was just quoting the CD-ROM read speed. Will edit the post. I wanted to use AAC as it gives higher quality music per bit rate than MP3s, there are others which I would be happy with (like ogg) but as far as I know the iphone doesn't support it – Anake Jan 5 '12 at 10:13

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