Newbie Help


Userlevel 2
Hi
Can I have some expert advice/opinion please. I have a Buffalo Linkstation pro which I set up last night along with my new Sonos kit...
My plan is that I will be able to access my music library when the computer is off....

So I have copied my itunes music folder over onto the NAS - I want to keep my original itunes folder on the hard drive as it snycs with my IPOD and is as big as it can be already (for the 32GB ipod touch).

So now I have a load of files on the NAS sorted into folders by Artists which is the ituines norm I think. So what do I do next?? - I'm keen to have album art showing on the controller (v cool) but my understanding is that itunes v8 does not allow for this.

Over time, I will re-rip my CD library to FLAC, but it takes a fair time per album (using EAC) and I just do not have the time to do all my CDs, Im going to have to spead it out over many weeks I fear..


I have downloaded media monkey but would love to know what people would do in my position and am I right in assuming now that I can turn the PC off, leave the NAS plugged in, and I can get access tot he music 24-7???....

7 replies

Userlevel 1
Hi
Can I have some expert advice/opinion please. I have a Buffalo Linkstation pro which I set up last night along with my new Sonos kit...
My plan is that I will be able to access my music library when the computer is off....

So now I have a load of files on the NAS sorted into folders by Artists which is the ituines norm I think. So what do I do next?? - I'm keen to have album art showing on the controller (v cool) but my understanding is that itunes v8 does not allow for this.


I'm probably wrong (I don't use iTunes), but I don't think the Sonos will care that this is a copy of an Itunes folder, you just need the album artwork somewhere in the same directory (I put it in an artwork sub-directory, for no reason other than neatness), and then (unfortunately for you!) you need to edit the tags on all your music files to point to the artwork, as Sonos reads the tag on the file to determine where to look for the album art.

Over time, I will re-rip my CD library to FLAC, but it takes a fair time per album (using EAC)

Really? I use FLAC and rip CDs using dbPowerAmp, it only takes a couple of minutes typically to do each album, yes if you got thousands it's going to take a while but I wouldn't have said individual CDs take a long time really.

I have downloaded media monkey but would love to know what people would do in my position and am I right in assuming now that I can turn the PC off, leave the NAS plugged in, and I can get access tot he music 24-7???....

The music folder is shared on the NAS with the appropriate Sonos permissions I take it? Obviously it needs to be shared for Sonos to be able to use it...
Userlevel 2
thnaks for that - when I ripped using EAC on a new (unscratched!) CD it took over 20 mins!!! -
Userlevel 2
[QUOTE=the_lhc;67709]I'm probably wrong (I don't use iTunes), but I don't think the Sonos will care that this is a copy of an Itunes folder, you just need the album artwork somewhere in the same directory (I put it in an artwork sub-directory, for no reason other than neatness), and then (unfortunately for you!) you need to edit the tags on all your music files to point to the artwork, as Sonos reads the tag on the file to determine where to look for the album art.

QUOTE]

Do I have to do this for every single track of every single album???!!!
Userlevel 1
thnaks for that - when I ripped using EAC on a new (unscratched!) CD it took over 20 mins!!! -

ACK! No, mine take no more than 4 minutes with dbPowerAmp. I've only got Pentium P4 as well, so it's not like it's a powerhouse PC or anything!
I would personally not recommend maintaining two libraries (one for Sonos, another for portables). But many people do that and find that it works for them.

My approach is to maintain one large, master library, preferably lossless on a NAS. This is naturally hundreds of GBs. But I maintain the files themselves, artwork, lyrics, playlists, edits (tracks, artists, albums etc) all in one place. I do not have any files on my PC. It's easy and convenient and I never have disconnects between the two libraries.

I also have many 'non Sonos' devices (2 x phatboxes, 3 x portables, some flash memory cards etc). They all support different formats, capacities, and have their specific requirements (like filenames, location, max filename length and so on). I sync these devices 'on-the-fly'. So I can tweak each one. One Phatbox has a 120GB drive so I use around 320kbps mp3, but for some 2GB flash memory cards I need to use 128k files, other devices might be around 192 for example. And each has a different subset of my library. My wife's portable is nothing like mine. I can't imagine maintaining multiple libraries to manage all this.

I happen to use MediaMonkey as it does it all, but there are plenty of choices. I maintain the one library on the NAS that Sonos also uses, with specific playlists for all the above offline devices. Then I just connect them to the PC and they sync automatically. It just works.

One point to note is that the first sync to portable takes a long time as you need to convert the file format. But resyncs are quick. The beauty is you can change the compression per device and you don't have to reconvert from the master library to a second (or third, forth...) lossy library. It's done on the fly.

HTH
db
when I ripped using EAC on a new (unscratched!) CD it took over 20 mins!!! -

I find that ripping times vary quite a lot. Some machines can rip to FLAC in about two minutes, and a few will require about 20. A 75+ minute classical CD will require more time than a 45 minute pop CD.

During ripping and tag editing, make sure that there is a wired connection between the computer and the NAS. When ripping FLAC files, back off on the compression ratio a little. While there is a significant difference in process time while using the higher settings, there is relatively little difference in the final file size.

Also fiddle with the error checking and other parameters associated with the CDROM drive. If your CD's are in good shape and the reader is working well, you don't need all of the error logging and correction options. Try a few different approaches, compare the results and see what you can get away with. In one of my trials on a 1.8GHz laptop with a DVD combo drive, a somewhat scratched CD, with all of the error correction options enabled, required HOURS to rip and the results were virtually the same (not so good) as ripping with all of the correction features turned OFF.

Sometimes reducing the read speed of the drive will actually result in faster processing because the drive will not need to retry as often. On the above laptop, I limit ripping speed to 4x, enable C2 error checking, and attempt to rip only visually perfect discs. This machine does not like scratches. For imperfect CD's or CD's that result in more than a few C2 errors, I have an old W98 machine that will flawlessly read CD's that real CD players struggle with. The W98 with a 500MHz PII averages about 12-17 minutes for a typical CD.
Userlevel 2
... am I right in assuming now that I can turn the PC off, leave the NAS plugged in, and I can get access tot he music 24-7???....

Mine is connected to my DSL Modem/Router. In that configuration, I have 24/7 access without having either my Desktop PC or laptop on, both of which are connected wirelessly to the modem/router.

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