Greetings from a new kid on the block.
For years, I have had the project to backup all my CDs on, well, something else. Until recently, this was impossible, unless I wanted to pay even more than the price of the original CDs for the needed storage. Now that a 500 gigabytes disk costs less than a few albums (typical price here for a new release is 22 euros, or about 30 dollars), it seems time to start doing it.
Besides the storage, one needs a good ripper. I currently have about 860 discs to rip, so I really want to do it 'right' the first time. I looked at what is available for OS X, and found that Max is the most promising proposal.
Promising ? It certainly is already very very nice as it stands now. But as I am thinking about what 'right' (see above) means, I am coming across a few ideas that would make it even more suitable for my project. I hope some of these ideas will help some other projects, too.
To make a 'perfect' backup of a CD, one already has several means to perfectly preserve the encoded musical content, but still missing (in any OS X application, as far as I know) is a way to recover the indexes. Well, not many albums have indexes beyond 01, but all have an INDEX 00 at the (true) beginning of most tracks.
INDEX 00 is where the previous track really ends. The real duration of track, as stated in the track list on the back of the box (or elsewhere in the booklet), is the time between its INDEX 01 and the INDEX 00 of next track. Since most rippers only handle INDEX 01, the durations they list are mostly incorrect. The space between index 00 and index 01 is the pregap, where CD players normally display a countdown to the start of the music.
In order to make a good backup of a CD, one should recover the indexes, especially the '00'. Unfortunately, only the INDEX 01 of each track is listed in a central place (the TOC of the disc), and the other ones can only be recovered by scanning the 'Q' subcode. I don't know if Max has access to this subcode, and thus if it would be possible, if not easy, to rebuild the indexes.
My improvement suggestion is thus: if at all possible, could you please recover the indexes, especially the '00' variety.
BTW: when presented by a TOC file containing all indexes, cdrdao happily builds a CD with the correct pregaps in place.
Discuss the current and future development of Max.
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