Sonos® Digital Music Tutorial
Digital Music - The Basics
What is digital music? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1
Key digital music terms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1
Music file formats . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3
Comparing Sonos-supported file formats . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6
Comparing CD ripping software . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7
What should I consider when selecting a file format? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8
Other sources of digital music . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9
Digital Music - Album Art and Tagging
More about metadata . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .11
File formats and tag types . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .11
Using Media Monkey . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12
Using Tag and Rename . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14
Renaming files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15
Converting from one file format to another . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .16
Ripping Software for Windows®
Windows Media® Player 10 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .19
Windows Media® Player 11 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .22
iTunes® 7 for Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .25
DBpowerAMP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .29
Ripping Software for Macintosh®
iTunes® 7 For Macintosh . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .31
MARS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .34
Ripping Software for Linux
Using KAudioCreator . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .37
Digital Music - The Basics
WHAT IS DIGITAL MUSIC?
Digital music is the conversion of analog audio to a digital format. Almost all music is
distributed today in digital, rather than analog format, with CDs being one of the first
technologies to embrace digital music. In the past few years, the transmission of music files via
the Internet for storage on home computers has become so popular that the term digital
music now most commonly refers to the music files we listen to on our home computers.
Digital music can be acquired in one of the following ways:
• You can transfer music from your own CDs to your home computer using a process
called ripping. Ripping is the word used to describe the extraction and conversion of music from an audio CD into a digital music file format. This means you can take music from
a CD and copy it onto your computer or other storage device in order to listen to it
through your computer speakers, the Sonos Digital Music System, or a portable music
player like the iPod.
• You can rip files to your local hard drive, or you can store your digital music on a
Network-Attached Storage (NAS) device. If you're using a NAS box, you can run
Sonos without leaving your computer on. The Sonos Digital Music System is
compatible with most NAS solutions on the market that use the SMB file sharing
protocol (e.g. Buffalo LinkStation, DLink, etc).
• You can sign up for a variety of online services available for acquiring digital music. These
services work by allowing you to search or browse for digital music. When you find a
song you want, you can download it—either by purchasing it from a store, or perhaps
at no charge if the music has been made available for free.
• You can subscribe to a music service such as Rhapsody which, for a monthly fee, allows
you access to over 1,000,000 tracks that you don’t have to store on your computer.
• You can listen to Internet radio. Sonos can stream both MP3 and WMA (HTTP) formats.
KEY DIGITAL MUSIC TERMS
Codec
Analog audio is converted to a digital format using a codec. Codec stands for coder/decoder
and is a standard method of compressing and decompressing data so that data is encoded or
compressed to reduce file size. A codec allows an operating system or a program to properly
play audio or video in a particular format. In the case of a digital music player, the codec is
responsible for decoding the WAV, MP3, WMA or other file type and allowing it to play on the
device.
Digital Music - The Basics
2
Lossy vs. Lossless
Lossy compression means compressing music in such a way that data is lost. This is the most
popular form of compression used today because it allows users to store many digital music
files on their computer without taking up too much space.
Lossless compresses digital music in such a way that the compressed file has the exact same
data as the original—the music will sound exactly the same. It is important to understand that
some lossy compressed files sound almost identical to the original even though they are
missing data.
Digital Rights Management (DRM)
DRM is an umbrella term used to describe several technologies that restrict the use of digital
media content in order to control digital music piracy. DRM enforces limitations on the
playback and/or transfer of audio files. Typically, a DRM system protects intellectual property
by either encrypting the data so that it can only be accessed by authorized users, or by
marking the content with a digital watermark or similar method so that the content can not
be freely distributed. FairPlay (from Apple®) and PlaysForSure (from Microsoft®) are the two
most common digital music DRM technologies.
• Apple's FairPlay. Music purchased from the iTunes Music Store cannot be played back
on the Sonos Digital Music System because the tracks are protected by a DRM scheme
called FairPlay. Apple has chosen not to license the ability to play FairPlay tracks to anyone (including Sonos). If Apple should decide in the future to reasonably license FairPlay,
Sonos will be able to playback all tracks that customers have purchased from the iTunes
Music Store.
• Microsoft's PlaysForSure. Unfortunately, Microsoft's DRM cannot currently support a
multi-room architecture. When Microsoft adds support for multi-room playback, Sonos
will be able to play songs purchased from the Microsoft store, Napster, Walmart, and any
other vendor that uses the "PlaysForSure" DRM scheme.
Note: Most DRM technologies allow you to burn the music to CD and then re-rip the music
back to your computer which removes any DRM protection that was on the files. (This also
removes the tags/metadata information from the music, so those must be manually added
back.) DRM-protected music that has been re-ripped is accessible to the Sonos system.
Metadata
Each digital audio file format contains information (or a tag) about the audio file such as the
artist’s name, song name, album name, and year. Sonos uses these tags to sort your media
into different sections so that you can easily access your music. This operation is called
indexing. Whenever you make a change to your music library, you will need to update your
music index so that Sonos can read the change and sort your new media (see the online help
system included with your Desktop Controller software for help with this step.) For more
information about metadata, see "File formats and tag types" on page 11.
Digital Music - The Basics
3
Bit Rate
Bit rate is concerned with the number of bits (bits are pieces of data) an audio file uses in a
given amount of time. In general, higher bit rate means higher quality. Bit rate is almost always
expressed as kilobits per second. A common bit-rate for downloaded MP3s is 128 kilobits per
second. Formats such as AAC, WMA, and MP3 offer bit rates of up to 320 kilobits per second.
So an MP3 ripped at 320 kilobits per second is going to have a higher sound quality than one
ripped at 128 kilobits per second. Below is a chart that shows a comparison between different
bit rates:
Common Audio Formats
Typical Bit Rate (kilobits per second)
CD audio
1411
Rhapsody streams
128
iTunes downloads
128
Streaming music
64
Internet talk radio, streaming voice
8
Constant Bit Rate/Variable Bit Rate
You may also come across the terms Constant Bit Rate (CBR) and Variable Bit Rate (VBR).
Constant Bit Rate means that the bit rate stays the same throughout the entire song. Thus if
you have an AAC file that is playing at 192 kilobits per second, it will play at 192 kilobits per
second for the entire song. Variable Bit Rate, on the other hand attempts to lower the bit rate
during less complex portions of the song and increase the bit rate during more complicated
sections. Variable bit rate files are made to adhere to a particular sound quality and will almost
always sound better than a constant bit rate file since they can more intelligently adjust the
quality for the audio.
Average Bit Rate
Average bit rate, or ABR, is very similar to VBR. ABR is not a constant bit rate encode, nor is it a
pure VBR encode. It's similar to CBR in that the user picks a bit rate that they would like to
encode at - let's say 192 Kbps. The encoder begins encoding in a manner similar to VBR, but it
tries to stay close to the selected bit rate in order to have an average bit rate of 192Kbps when
the file is finished encoding.
Note: If VBR, ABR, or CBR is not explicitly listed, then the software is probably using CBR.
MUSIC FILE FORMATS
There are many file formats for storing audio files on your computer. Audio file formats can be
broken down into three major groups:
• Formats with lossy compression such as MP3, Ogg Vorbis, lossy WMA, and AAC.
• Formats with lossless compression such as FLAC and Apple Lossless.
• Uncompressed lossless formats such as WAV and AIFF.
Digital Music - The Basics
4
About lossy compression
Lossy compression means that music is compressed in such a way that data is actually lost.
This usually causes the sound quality to degrade somewhat depending upon on the
compression amount and file type. However, some lossy compressed files sound almost
identical to the original even though they are missing data - particularly those encoded at a
high bit rate.
• Lossy is the most popular form of compression used today because it allows a large
number of music files to be stored on a small amount of disk space. If you don’t have a
lot of hard drive space, a lossy file format is a good choice.
• If you want to use the same music for both your Sonos system and a portable device,
lossy compression may be the best choice as more portable devices currently support
lossy formats than lossless formats.
• If you decide to rip your music CDs twice, you can use smaller, lossy files for your portable
device, and larger, higher-quality, lossless files for playback on your Sonos Digital Music
System.
Lossy file types
MP3. MP3 files with bit rates in the range of 32 Kbps-320 Kbps and 8KHz-48KHz sample rates
are supported. MP3 is no longer the best format in terms of sound quality vs. compression
efficiency, but it is almost universally supported by every hardware and software player. This
makes it a popular choice for those looking for maximum compatibility. MP3 uses ID3 tags to
store information about each digital music file. MP3 can be encoded using VBR, CBR, and ABR.
AAC. Sonos supports AAC sample rates from 8KHz-48KHz in both ABR and VBR. The AAC file
must have the .m4a extension for the Sonos system to recognize it. Songs ripped in raw AAC,
(.aac), format are not supported. AAC is generally considered to be slightly higher quality than
MP3 files at equal bit rates, but AAC supports VBR up to 500 Kbps.
Ogg Vorbis. Ogg Vorbis is an open source audio compression format which supports VBR and
ABR. It is roughly comparable to other formats used to store and play digital music, such as
MP3 and AAC. It is different from these other formats because it is completely free, open, and
unpatented. Ogg Vorbis does not support embedded album art, but does support metadata
using what has been dubbed "Vorbis Style Tags". See http://www.xiph.org/vorbis/doc/vcomment.html for more info on Vorbis style tags. Ogg Vorbis can encode in VBR at up to 500
Kbps.
WMA. Windows Media Audio (WMA) is a flexible digital music format that is supported by a
wide range of portable players. WMA is slightly better in terms of sound quality than the MP3
format, but a minimum bit rate of 128Kbps is recommended for acceptable results. WMA
supports CBR up to 320 Kbps.
About lossless compressed
Lossless compression is done in such a way that the compressed file has the exact same data
as the original—the music sounds exactly the same. If sound quality is of primary importance
to you, a lossless compressed file format is your best choice. Most lossless formats can be
converted directly to another lossless format, or you can convert from a lossless format to a
lossy format for use with your other devices.
5
Digital Music - The Basics
Lossless compressed file types
Apple Lossless. A digital audio file format from Apple that compresses an audio CD to about
half of its original size. Mathematically equivalent to the original audio track, Apple Lossless
provides the highest quality Apple format for ripping audio CDs. It uses the same .M4A file
extension as unprotected AAC files. Apple Lossless is the only lossless file format that is
compatible with both Sonos and the iPod.
FLAC. (Free Lossless Audio Codec). FLAC is an open source, lossless codec. It supports Vorbis
style tags. FLAC files provide lossless audio quality while still saving on disk space. This file type
is a good choice for people who want high quality audio in a lossless format with good
metadata support.
About lossless uncompressed
Uncompressed lossless is considered to be a carbon copy of the original file. The only
difference between a compressed lossless and an uncompressed lossless file is the size of the
file. Uncompressed lossless files are much larger and have less tag support, and are not
recommended for normal home use.
Lossless uncompressed file types
WAV. No compression is used, so WAV files consume a lot of hard drive space. They also
provide a carbon copy of a music track that can be converted into a compressed format or
otherwise manipulated without affecting the original file. A major drawback of WAV is it does
not support metadata; therefore it is indexed by filename, and must be searched by the folder
option within Sonos. The WAV file format was designed as a recording format, not a music
storage format, and is therefore not an optimal choice for creating a digital music library.
There is an application called Media Monkey (see "Using Media Monkey" on page 12) that
allows you to edit the RIFF chunks within a WAV file and enter basic information like Artist and
Track titles. The Sonos System can read and display this data. However, this is currently the
only metadata solution for WAV files, and it is an awkward, cumbersome process.
AIFF. (Audio Interchange File Format). AIFF is a common format for storing and transmitting
sampled sound. This format was developed by Apple Computer and is the standard audio
format for Macintosh computers. It supports a variety of bit rates and sample rates. This format
is very popular on Apple platforms, and is widely used in professional programs that process
digital audio waveforms. Like WAV files, they are very large, and may not be practical for
normal home use.
Digital Music - The Basics
6
COMPARING SONOS-SUPPORTED FILE FORMATS
File
Format
MP3
*WMA
AAC
Ripping
Software
Lossy/
Lossless
Windows
Media Player
(WMP),
iTunes,
dBPowerAMP,
Media Monkey
Lossy
WMP,
dbPowerAMP,
Media Monkey
Lossy
dbPowerAMP,
iTunes
Lossy
Portable
device
Compatibility
(see key
below)
1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8
2,3,4,5,6,7
1,8
Bit Rate
(see page
3)
File size
per audio
minute
Supported
Metadata
tags
128 CBR
1 MB
320 VBR
3 MB
All (Artist,
Album,
Genre,
Composer,
Track)
160 CBR
1.2 MB
All
Best
Quality
VBR
4 MB
256 VBR
2 MB
320 CBR
2.5 MB
All
Ogg
Vorbis
Media Monkey,
Mars,
dbPowerAMP
Lossy
2,6
320 VBR
3 MB
**All
Apple
Lossless
dbPowerAMP,
iTunes
Lossless
compressed
1
500-1000
VBR
9 MB
All
FLAC
Media Monkey,
Mars,
dbPowerAMP
Lossless
compressed
6
500-1000
VBR,
highest
compression rate
8 MB
**All
AIFF
dbPowerAMP,
iTunes
Lossless uncompressed
1
1411 CBR
11 MB
All
WAV
WMP,
dbPowerAMP,
iTunes
Lossless uncompressed
1,4,5,6,8
1411 CBR
11 MB
Artist,
Album,
Track
* WMA is not a supported file format for Macintosh.
** Composer is a user-defined field.
Portable Device Key
If your portable player is not listed in the chart above, check your owner’s guide for file format
compatibility.
1 iPod
2 iRiver Clix
3 Samsung Z5
4 Creative Vision: M
5 Toshiba Gigabeat
Digital Music - The Basics
7
6 Cowon iAudio 6
7 Sandisk E Series
8 Sony PSP
Note: Music downloaded from iTunes Music Store is 128 Kbps AAC protected (DRM)
content. You will pay the same price as the actual CD, but with 1/11th the bit rate. Also, due
to DRM restrictions, music downloaded from the iTunes Music Store is not currently
playable on the Sonos system.
Rhapsody streams are 160 Kbps streams. Currently Sonos can stream Rhapsody tracks, but
cannot play downloaded content from Rhapsody due to DRM restrictions.
COMPARING CD RIPPING SOFTWARE
There are several tools available to transfer music from your CDs to your home computer.
Some can also convert files from one file format to another. We’ve compared a few of the more
common software choices below:
Ripping
software
Operating
system
File types
supported
Can it convert
music from
one format to
another?
Additional
album art
software
needed?
Ease of
use
* advanced
** moderate
*** easy
Windows
Media Player
Windows
MP3, WAV, WMA
No
No
***
dbPower
AMP
Windows
Supports all file
formats, including
FLAC and Ogg
Vorbis
Yes
Yes
**
iTunes
Windows
Macintosh
AIFF, AAC, WAV, MP3,
and Apple Lossless
Yes
Yes
***
Media
Monkey
Windows
MP3, FLAC, Ogg
Vorbis, WMA
Yes
No
*
Mars
Macintosh
FLAC, Ogg Vorbis
Yes
Yes
*
Digital Music - The Basics
8
WHAT SHOULD I CONSIDER WHEN SELECTING A FILE FORMAT?
Now that you know which file formats Sonos supports, you’ll need to make a decision about
which format(s) to use. Ask yourself the following questions:
• What sound quality are you trying to achieve?
Ripping to 320Kbps MP3 format provides a very acceptable sound quality and is compatible with most every kind of device, including Sonos. However, if you want CD quality
sound, a lossless format will work best for you. You should make your decision based
upon a combination of disk space limitations and the convenience of the CD ripping
tool.
Do you use a portable player? If so, what file formats does it support?
MP3 is the most universal audio file format—virtually all devices support it.
Supported file formats for some of the more common portable players are listed below:
• If you are using an Apple iPod model, it supports MP3, Apple Lossless, AAC, WAV,
and AIFF.
• If you are using a Creative Zen model, it supports MP3, WMA, and WAV.
• If you are using an iRiver Clix model, it supports MP3, Ogg Vorbis, and WMA.
• If you are using a Cowon iAudio model, it supports MP3, WMA, WAV, FLAC, and Ogg
Vorbis.
• If you are using a different portable music player, check your owner’s guide to see
which file formats it supports.
• Do you want to share your music library with a portable player?
320 Kbps MP3 will generally work well for both your Sonos system and your MP3 player.
However, if you want to listen to only CD-quality digital music on your Sonos Digital Music System, or if your portable music player has a small amount of storage space, you
might decide to create two sets of files (large and small) . Ripping two sets of files is a
time-consuming process. If you decide to do it, you should rip to lossless first as it’s easy
to convert the lossless files to another format using a tool like dBpowerAMP or iTunes.
• How much space do you want to use to store your music?
If you have a limited amount of disk space, a lossy format is best for you. If you have a
NAS box, or a great deal of disk space on your computer, you might prefer a lossless format.
• What computer operating system do you use?
The only file format that is not supported on both Windows and OS X operating systems
is WMA, which is for Windows only. However, as you can see from "Comparing CD ripping software" on page 7, not all CD ripping software is available for both platforms.
So... if you’ve decided you want a lossy format:
• MP3 is the most versatile format - it is supported by both iTunes and Windows Media
Player.
• If you own an iPod, we recommend ripping to MP3 or AAC.
• When ripping to a lossy format, we recommend using a compression rate of 192 Kbps
or higher. A compression rate of 320 Kbps provides a very acceptable sound quality.
9
Digital Music - The Basics
So... if you’ve decided you want a lossless format:
• Choose FLAC or Apple Lossless, as AIFF and WAV files are much larger and have less tag
support.
• If you own an iPod, we recommend using iTunes to rip to Apple Lossless because it is
compatible with your iPod.
• If you’ve decided you want to rip FLAC files, Media Monkey or MARS is a good choice.
OTHER SOURCES OF DIGITAL MUSIC
Rhapsody
You can hear more music in more rooms with Sonos and Rhapsody™, the #1 rated digital
music service. With Sonos software version 2.0, you can connect directly to Rhapsody via the
Web, so you don't have to download an application or keep your computer on.
Your Sonos system comes with a free 30-day Rhapsody trial — no sign up, no credit card
necessary. For more information, you can go to www.sonos.com/getmusic. For setup help,
you can go to the online help system included with your Desktop Controller software (from
the Help menu, select Sonos System Help).
Internet Radio
The Sonos Digital Music System is preloaded with over 300 Internet radio stations you can
stream wirelessly— and it’s easy to add your own. For a list of those provided with the Sonos
system, go to www.sonos.com/getmusic.
Audible
With a subscription to Audible.com®, the Internet's leading provider of spoken audio
entertainment, you can stream over 80,000 hours of audio programs all over your house. Go
to www.sonos.com/getmusic for more information.
Digital Music - Album Art and Tagging
MORE ABOUT METADATA
Each digital audio file format contains information (or a tag) about the audio file such as the
artist’s name, song name, album name, and year. Sonos uses these tags to sort your media
into different sections so that you can easily access your music. This operation is called
indexing. Whenever you make a change to your music library, you will need to update your
music index so that Sonos can read the change and sort your new media (see the online help
system included with your Desktop Controller software for help with this step.) For more
information about metadata, see File Formats and Tag Types below.
FILE FORMATS AND TAG TYPES
Different file types use different standards for tagging their files. MP3 files contain ID3 tags.
Sonos supports up to version 2.3 of the ID3 tag format. WAV files do not support metadata/
tags— instead they contain RIFF chunks that can be edited for Sonos to read. Ogg Vorbis and
FLAC use the same tagging system called Xiph Comments, also known as Vorbis_Comment's.
File Format
Extension Used
Tag Type
MP3
.mp3
ID3
AAC
.m4a
Author defined
Ogg Vorbis
.ogg
Vorbis_Comment
WMA
.wma
Author defined
AIFF
.aif
Author defined text
Apple Lossless
.m4a
Author defined
FLAC
.flac
Vorbis_Comment
WAV
.wav
<none>
Apple Lossless, FLAC, and AIFF support metadata/tags natively. However, Apple Lossless is the
only one that supports embedded album art, (art that is placed within each file individually).
So if you want to use album art with the other formats, you will need to place the art in the
corresponding artist/album folder. You can go to http://faq.sonos.com/art for more
information.
Digital Music - Album Art and Tagging
12
HOW DOES THE RIPPING SOFTWARE KNOW WHAT MUSIC CD I INSERT INTO MY
COMPUTER?
Most ripping software looks up tag information through an online database called CDDB or
freedb.
What is CDDB?
CDDB (Compact Disc Database) is a database software applications use to look up CD
(compact disc) information over the Internet. This is performed by a client which calculates a
(nearly) unique disc ID and then queries the database. As a result, the client is able to display
the artist name, CD title, track list and some additional information.
What is freedb?
freedb is a database of compact disc track listings where all the content is under the GNU
General Public License. It was originally based on the now-commercial CDDB (compact disc
database). To look up CD information over the Internet, a client calculates a nearly unique disc
ID and then queries the database. As a result, the client displays the artist, album title, track list
and some additional info.
ADDITIONAL PROGRAMS FOR METADATA/TAG EDITING AND ALBUM ART RETRIEVAL
If your ripping software is not sufficient for tag editing and/or album art retrieval, there are a
few popular programs you might want to try. Some programs will only edit metadata/tags,
some will only find album art, and some will do both.
USING MEDIA MONKEY
Media Monkey is a powerful program that can rip CD's, edit metadata/tags, embed album art,
and much more. In this document, we will focus only on the album art and metadata/tag
editing features that Media Monkey provides.
• Supports Ogg Vorbis, FLAC, MP3, and WMA files.
• To download, go to http://www.mediamonkey.com.
1. Download and install Media Monkey.
2. Launch the program.
3. Select File>Add/Rescan Tracks to the Library...
4. Select the folders you would like to add, as well as the file types that should be added into
Media Monkey's library, and then click OK.
5. Click a selection such as Artist or Album.
Digital Music - Album Art and Tagging
13
6. Right-click the album or track and select Auto-Tag from Amazon to have it search
Amazon.com for you.
A new window opens to display album information.
7. If the information is correct, click Auto-Tag.
8. If the information is wrong, select the file, right-click and select Properties. (This can also
be done from the initial Media Monkey window for metadata/tag editing.)
Here you can update any information. You can also add your own image if Media Monkey
does not find one for you by selecting the Album Art tab and adding your own.
Digital Music - Album Art and Tagging
14
USING TAG AND RENAME
Tag and Rename has the ability to edit the metadata of digital music files. It uses freedb or
Amazon.com to find information for the music files. If you use Amazon.com to find the tags,
you can also import album art.
• Supports MP3 (ID3v1 and ID3v2.2-4), WMA, Ogg Vorbis, and FLAC files.
• To download, go to http://www.softpointer.com/tr.htm.
1. Download and install the program.
2. Launch the program and select the folder you would like to modify the contents of.
3. Select the format of the digital files. If you have multiple formats, you can select All to
show all the music, without any dependencies on format type.
4. Select the Get tags from file name tab at the top left corner of the program.
5. Select all of the music you would like to edit the tags for (it’s best to do this album by
album).
6. Select Tools from the menu bar.
Digital Music - Album Art and Tagging
15
7. Select either Get Album Titles from Freedb or Get Album Titles from Amazon. If you
use Amazon, there is a chance that the album art will also be available.
Once selected, a pop-up box appears.
8. Verify that the search information is correct, and then press the Search! button.
In the example above, the correct album information was found. The photo symbol that
appears in color next to Track # indicates that the album art has also been found.
9. Click Get info!
The files above are MP3 files, so it will prompt to save the album art to the tag itself. If the files
were in a format that doesn’t support embedded album art, you would be prompted to save
the image to the folder where these files are located. When this occurs, the album art is
automatically saved as folder.jpg, which is compliant with Sonos.
10. Verify that the songs and the preference settings are correct.
11. Click Write Tags.
RENAMING FILES
You can use Tag and Rename to rename your files after they have been tagged.
1. Select the folder you wish to rename from the Tag&Rename folders tree.
Digital Music - Album Art and Tagging
16
2. Select the Rename files tab at the top left side of the window.
3. Select the File name mask that suits your needs from the chart displayed on the right.
The file name mask is extracted from the metadata/tag in the file.
4. Click Rename. All of your files will be renamed as you specified under the File name
mask.
CHANGING MULTIPLE FILE TAGS
The final option in Tag and Rename is Multi File tag editor. This allows you to alter multiple
file tags. For example, if you have several albums from the same artist— some may display the
artist’s first letter as uppercase, while others may display it as lowercase. You can use this
feature to rename them all to be the same.
1. Select the music you want to change.
2.
Check the Artist checkbox and type the artist’s name as you would like it to appear.
3. Click the Save Tags button.
CONVERTING FROM ONE FILE FORMAT TO ANOTHER
You should only convert from one file format to another if you are going from lossless to
lossless, or lossless to lossy. It’s not wise to convert from lossy to lossless, or lossy to lossy
because each file format uses a different method to cut the size and bit rate down from the
original file. So if you convert an AAC file to MP3, the end result will be a file that sounds far
worse than the file you started with. If you convert from a lossy file format to lossless, you will
gain nothing but a larger file of bad quality music.
If your music collection is currently in a lossless format that Sonos does not support (such as
WMA Lossless), you can more than likely convert it to a format that Sonos can play.
17
Digital Music - Album Art and Tagging
USING WINDOWS- DBPOWERAMP TO CONVERT FILES
Once you have dBpowerAMP installed, you can convert files whenever you want.
1. Select the desired files, right-click, and select Convert To. If you choose a codec you don't
have installed, you will be prompted to install it. In the illustration below, FLAC files are
being converted to WMA.
2. Click Convert when you have finished selecting options.
Ripping Software for Windows®
This section will guide you through the process of using three common ripping tools:
• Windows Media® Player 10 and 11
• iTunes® 7 for Windows
• DBpowerAMP
WINDOWS MEDIA® PLAYER 10
1 Set Up Windows Media Player Preferences
1. Start Windows Media Player (go to
Start>Programs>Accessories>Entertainment>Windows Media Player).
2. If this is your first time ripping a CD, it is important to set your Windows Media Player
preferences for the format and bit-rate you would like to use for ripping. To access these
settings, select Tools>Options from the Windows Media Player menu bar.
3. Click the Rip Music tab.
Be sure Copy
protect music
box is NOT
checked
click to change music
storage location
select ripping format
from the Format dropdown
4. To change the location where your music will be stored, click the Change button. If you
are using an external drive or a NAS drive, input that information here.
5. Select a ripping format from the Format drop-down. The default is Windows Media
Audio, which optimizes the balance between file size and sound quality. Other choices
include:
• Windows Media Audio (variable bit rate), which can reduce the file size but may also take
longer to rip.
• MP3 format which provides more flexibility when choosing a format.
CD Ripping for Windows®
20
• For Sonos use, do not select WMA lossless as the Sonos Digital Music System cannot currently play WMA lossless.
Note: Do not check Copy protect music as this will make your music unusable to
other devices, including Sonos.
6. Select any other desired preferences.
7. Click OK to save your settings and exit the Options window.
2 Rip the CD
1. Insert a CD into your CD-ROM drive. Depending upon your settings, the CD may
automatically be detected. Otherwise, select File>CDs and Devices>Rip Audio CD from
the Windows Media Player menu bar.
All tracks will automatically be selected for import. You can de-select any tracks you don’t
wish to rip.
2. Click Rip Music in the upper right-hand corner.
The first time you rip music, you will be prompted to choose the format for the files being
created. Click one of the following options:
• Keep my current format settings. This option keeps your current file format and immediately starts ripping the songs you selected to your computer.
• Change my current format settings. Select this option if you want to change the format,
bit rate, storage folder, or other options.
3. After you select an option, click OK.
The CD will begin importing to your music library. You can watch the progress as it rips
each track to your hard drive.
3 Add Missing Album Art
MP3, AAC, WMA, and Apple Lossless files all can have art embedded into each file individually.
All other formats that Sonos supports must have album art in the form of "folder.xxx" where
xxx is the extension. Sonos supports JPG, GIF, BMP, and PNG images. You can go to http://
faq.sonos.com/art for more information.
Windows Media Player can edit tags as well as acquire album art for your music. As mentioned
above, Windows Media Player will put the Folder.jpg image into the folder it rips. It will also put
the image into a folder of music you have already ripped.
You can set your preferences so that Windows Media Player automatically obtains and
updates missing media information for any music files that are added to or stored in your
library. By default, the music files in your My Music folder are added to your library.
CD Ripping for Windows®
21
1. Select Tools>Options>Library.
check to automatically
retrieve missing
information
2. Check Retrieve additional information from the Internet, and then select either Only
add missing information, or Overwrite all media information.
When this check box is selected, Windows Media Player will try to update any missing
media information in your music files by sending data about the files to a database
operated by WindowsMedia.com.
Note: All of the CD rippers discussed in this tutorial will input the metadata/tag
information if available on the Internet.
3. If your album art does not display, you can try one of the following options:
Now Playing
List
Find Album
Info
• Click the Library tab. Select a track, right-click, and select Find Album Info. If the right
information displays, click Finish. If the right information does not display, click Search
CD Ripping for Windows®
22
to look for the album that corresponds to your digital music files.
• Select the album or tracks you would like to find album art for (or edit metadata/tags
for), and drag them into the Now Playing List located to the right. Select one or more
songs, right-click, and select Find Album Info. If the right information displays, click Finish. If the right information does not display, click Search to look for the album that corresponds to your digital music files, or right-click and select Edit to and manually enter
the information.
• If you wish to modify the assigned metadata/tag for a file, select a track from the Now
Playing List. Right-click, and select Advanced Tag Editor. Make any changes you wish,
and then click OK.
WINDOWS MEDIA® PLAYER 11
1 Set Up Windows Media Player Preferences
1. Start Windows Media Player (go to
Start>Programs>Accessories>Entertainment>Windows Media Player).
2. If this is your first time ripping a CD, it is important to set your Windows Media Player
preferences for the format and bit-rate you would like to use for ripping. To access these
settings, click the Rip tab.
3. Select More Options.
Be sure Copy
protect music
check box is NOT
checked
Click to change music
storage location
Select ripping format from
the Format drop-down
4. To change the location where your music will be stored, click the Change button. If you
are using an external drive or a NAS drive, input that information here.
CD Ripping for Windows®
23
5. Select a ripping format from the Format drop-down. The default is Windows Media
Audio, which optimizes the balance between file size and sound quality. Other choices
include:
• Windows Media Audio (variable bit rate), which can reduce the file size but may also take
longer to rip.
• MP3 format which provides more flexibility when choosing a format.
• For Sonos use, do not select WMA lossless or Windows Media Audio Pro as the Sonos
Digital Music System cannot currently play these formats.
Note: Do not check Copy protect music as this will make your music unusable to
other devices, including Sonos.
6. Select any other desired preferences.
7. Click OK to save your settings and exit the Options window.
2 Rip the CD
1. Insert a CD into your CD-ROM drive.
2. Click the Rip tab.
All tracks will automatically be selected for import. You can de-select any tracks you don’t
wish to rip.
3. Click the Start Rip button (lower right-hand corner).
The CD will begin importing to your music library. You can watch the progress as it rips
each track to your hard drive.
3 Add Missing Album Art
MP3, AAC, WMA, and Apple Lossless files all can have art embedded into each file individually.
All other formats that Sonos supports must have album art in the form of "folder.xxx" where
xxx is the extension. Sonos supports JPG, GIF, BMP, and PNG images. You can go to
http://faq.sonos.com/art for more information.
Windows Media Player can edit tags as well as acquire album art for your music. As mentioned
above, Windows Media Player will put the Folder.jpg image into the folder it rips. It will also put
the image into a folder of music you have already ripped.
You can set your preferences so that Windows Media Player automatically obtains and
updates missing media information for any music files that are added to or stored in your
library. By default, the music files in your My Music folder are added to your library.
CD Ripping for Windows®
24
1. Select Tools>Options>Library.
check to automatically
retrieve missing
information
2. Check Retrieve additional information from the Internet, and then select either Only
add missing information, or Overwrite all media information.
When this check box is selected, Windows Media Player will try to update any missing
media information in your music files by sending data about the files to a database
operated by WindowsMedia.com.
Note: All of the CD rippers discussed in this tutorial will input the metadata/tag
information if available on the Internet.
3. If your album art does not display, you can try one of the following options:
Library tab
Now
Playing
Album
Songs
• Click the Library tab. Select Album from the menu on the left. Right-click the album you
would like to retrieve album art for, and select Update Album Info.
• If you wish to modify the assigned metadata/tag for one or more files, select a track from
the Songs menu on the left. Right-click the track you would like information for, and select Advanced Tag Editor. Make any changes you wish, and then click OK.
CD Ripping for Windows®
25
ITUNES® 7 FOR WINDOWS
If you don’t have iTunes for Windows installed, you can go to http://www.apple.com/itunes/
download/ to download the latest version.
iTunes 7 includes a feature that automatically obtains album art for your library. However,
iTunes does not embed the art into the files— instead it is stored in a separate folder, and in a
format that Sonos does not play. Step 3, "Obtain Album Art" on page 26, will walk you through
the process of changing the format and location of the album art so that Sonos can display it.
Note: You must have an iTunes store account to use the Get Album Artwork
feature in iTunes.
1 Set Up iTunes Preferences
1. Select Start>Programs>iTunes.
2.
If this is your first time ripping a CD, it is important to set your iTunes preferences for the
format and bit-rate you would like to use for ripping. To access these settings, select
Edit>Preferences from the iTunes window.
3. Click the Advanced tab.
click to change music
folder location
4. Select the location where your music is stored. In this illustration, it is set to the default
iTunes Music folder.
CD Ripping for Windows®
26
5. Click the Importing tab.
click to select
import format
This screen allows you to select the quality and type of audio you would like your digital music
to be imported in. Don't be fooled by what programs label as high quality.
Remember, an audio CD has a bit rate of 1411 Kbps, which is high quality. 128 Kbps is 1/11th
of that, which is considered as low quality. AAC and MP3 have a "Custom" setting for choices of
higher bit rates and choosing between constant and variable bit rates.
If you want high quality with Sonos and you are using iTunes, Apple Lossless Encoder is a good
option as it is a bit for bit exact copy of the song, and it supports tags and album art.
6. Click OK to save your preference settings.
2 Rip the CD
1. Insert a CD into your CD-ROM drive. The CD will automatically be detected, and its tracks
will appear in the iTunes window. All tracks will automatically be selected for import. You
can de-select any tracks you don’t wish to rip.
If your album information does not display, you can click Advanced>Get CD Track
Names to have iTunes search for it.
2. When you are ready, click the Import CD button in the lower right-hand corner. The CD
will begin importing to your music library. You can watch the progress as it rips each track
to your hard drive.
To stop the ripping process, you can click the X
in the Importing window.
Once completed, your music will appear when you click the Library tab. It also resides in the
music folder you selected when you set your preferences.
3 Obtain Album Art
Note: You must have an iTunes store account in order to use the Get Album
Artwork iTunes feature. If you don’t have one, you will need to set one up before
continuing.
CD Ripping for Windows®
27
1. From the iTunes window, select all the tracks on an album (click the first track, and then
while holding down the Shift key, click the last track.)
Selected tracks will be highlighted.
2. Right-click and select Get Album Artwork.
3. Select one of the tracks, right-click, and select Get Info.
4. Select the Artwork tab.
5. Right-click the image, and select Copy.
6. Click OK to close this window.
7. Next, click to highlight all the tracks on the album again.
8. Right-click and select Get Info. This will open a window where you can edit multiple
tracks.
9. Hover over the Artwork field, right-click, and select Paste.
CD Ripping for Windows®
28
10. Click OK.
Your art is now embedded in each file so the Sonos system can display the album art the next
time you play this album.
Note: If you do not see the album art, make sure that iTunes is set to display cover
art by selecting Show Artwork from the Edit menu.
If iTunes cannot find your album art
Follow the steps below to search the Internet if there is album art that iTunes could not find.
1. If you find the album art on a Web site, right-click the image and select Copy.
2. From the iTunes window, select all of the tracks in that album.
3. In the Now Playing pane, (where it says Drag Album Artwork Here), right-
click and select Paste.
The album art will now display for all tracks in that album.
If you’d like to use a different software program, see "Additional programs for metadata/tag
editing and album art retrieval" on page 12 for more information.
CD Ripping for Windows®
29
DBPOWERAMP
Settings for dBpowerAMP will differ depending upon the codec you are using. FLAC is the
format shown in the example below. To obtain codecs for dBpower AMP, you can go to http://
www.dbpoweramp.com/codec-central.htm and select the codec you need.
1 Set Up DBPowerAMP Preferences
1. Launch dBpower AMP.
2. Click the Rip down arrow and then select Rip To.
• If you do not have the codec for the selected format installed, you will be prompted to
install it at this point.
• When you select a format, the Compression Settings window will open.
If this window does not automatically
appear, you can select Rip>Compression
Settings from the menu bar.
3. Select the desired compression setting, and click OK.
2 Rip the CD
1. Insert your music CD.
dBpowerAMP will automatically search freedb for your album’s tag information.
• If it does not find the correct album, you can use the fields at the top of the screen (artist,
album, genre, comment, year) to enter the information manually.
• To change an individual track, select the title, right-click, and select Rename.
CD Ripping for Windows®
30
2. Click Options from the menu bar to select the location your files will be ripped to.
3. From the Rip to Folder option, click Set to change the music location.
4. Make any other preference changes you wish, such as rip to format or naming scheme.
5. Click OK to save your selections.
6. Click Rip to begin the conversion process.
The music converter window will display during the process, and then disappear.
Note: dBpowerAMP does not put the files you rip into particular folders. For each
CD your rip, you should make your own Artist/Album folders and put the music into
the respective folder.
Ripping Software for Macintosh®
This section will guide you through the process of using two common ripping tools:
• iTunes® 7 For Macintosh
• MARS
ITUNES® 7 FOR MACINTOSH
1
Set Up iTunes Preferences
1. Start iTunes.
2. If this is your first time ripping a CD, it is important to set your iTunes preferences for the
format and bit-rate you would like to use for ripping. To access these settings, select
iTunes>Preferences>Advanced.
3. Click the Importing tab.
Click the Importing tab
Select AAC Encoder
Select the Custom drop-down
• For best results, we suggest you import using AAC Encoder and then select Custom
from the Setting drop-down menu.
• Select 320 Kbps as the Stereo Bit Rate.
2
Rip the CD
1. Insert a CD into your CD-ROM drive. The CD will automatically be detected, and its tracks
will appear in the iTunes pane. All tracks will automatically be selected for import. You can
de-select any tracks you don’t wish to rip.
2. Click the Import CD button in the lower right-hand corner. The CD will begin importing
to your music library. You can watch the progress as it rips each track to your hard drive.
CD Ripping for Macintosh®
3
32
Obtain Album Art
Note: You must have an iTunes store account in order to use the Get Album
Artwork iTunes feature. If you don’t have one, you will need to set one up before
continuing.
1. From the iTunes window, select all the tracks on an album (click the first track, and then
while holding down the Shift key, click the last track.)
Selected tracks will be highlighted.
2. Select Advanced from the menu bar, and select Get Album Artwork.
3. Select one of the tracks, Ctrl-click, and select Get Info.
4. Select the Artwork tab.
5. Select Edit from the menu bar, and click Copy.
6. Select OK to close this window.
7. Next, select all the tracks on the album again.
CD Ripping for Macintosh®
33
8. Ctrl-click and select Get Info. This will open a window where you can edit multiple tracks.
Artwork field
9. Hover over the Artwork field, select Edit from the menu bar, and click Paste.
10. Select OK.
Your art is now embedded in each file so the Sonos system can display the album art the next
time you play this album.
Note: If you do not see the album art, make sure that iTunes is set to display cover
art by selecting Show Artwork from the Edit menu.
If iTunes cannot find your album art
Follow the steps below to search the Internet if there is album art that iTunes could not find.
1.If you find the album art on a Web site, click the image and while holding it down,
drag it to the Drag Album Artwork Here pane within iTunes.
The album art will now display for all tracks in that album.
If you’d like to use a different software program, see "Additional programs for metadata/tag
editing and album art retrieval" on page 12 for more information.
CD Ripping for Macintosh®
34
MARS
MARS is fairly limited in that it only converts CDs to Ogg Vorbis or FLAC. It is also one of the few
programs that will convert to these file formats on a Mac. You can download Mars at
http://www.mindawn.com/download.php.
1. Install MARS, and then launch the program.
Destination Directory
2. Select the destination for your music using the Destination Directory. Then click
Settings.
3. Click the Filenames tab to select the way you want your files named.
35
CD Ripping for Macintosh®
4. Click the Encoding tab.
The illustration shows Ogg Vorbis with a quality of 9 selected. You can also select a manual bit
rate. Mars will always use variable bit rate for Ogg Vorbis format.
5. Click OK when you have finished selecting options.
6. If you haven't already inserted a CD, do it now.
7. Once the CD is inserted, you can click the Get Info button.
CD Ripping for Macintosh®
36
If the information is not found for your particular album, you can manually enter the data
under Artist and Album. For the songs, you must CTRL + click each track and edit the name/
track number. Then click Convert.
Your music should now be available in the Destination Directory. Be aware that Ogg Vorbis
and FLAC are not natively supported on OS X. You will need a third-party player to play these
tracks. You can download a player called Mindawn Player from the same site as MARS.
Ripping Software for Linux
USING KAUDIOCREATOR
KAudioCreator is included by default in Suse 10 installations. Most users can access it at login
time, and rip a CD with little or no configuration. The interface is designed to be intuitive and
simple to use. KAudioCreator can rip music to four different formats with the default
installation — MP3, OGG, WAV, and FLAC. Each of these formats is configurable in
KAudioCreator so that you can personalize the ripped music to your unique tastes. The steps
below demonstrate how to rip a CD using the KAudioCreator included in Suse 10.
1
Set KAudioCreator Preferences
1. Click the KDE menu and select Multimedia.
2. From the Multimedia menu, choose CD\DVD Tools.
CD Ripping for Linux
38
A new window will appear called KAudioCreator.
3. Click the Settings menu, and then select Configure KAudioCreator.
Use the Configuration window to
select your ripping options.
4. Click the Encoder tab.
5. Highlight the audio format you want to rip to, and click Configure.
6. Select your preferences, such as bit rate and other quality settings, and then click OK.
CD Ripping for Linux
39
2
Rip the CD
1. Insert a CD into your CD-ROM drive. KAudioCreator will automatically search the Internet
for your CD information.
2. Make sure the songs you want to rip have a check mark next to them.
3. Click the Gear icon in the tool bar to view a list of encoding options.
4. Select the format you configured using the Configure KAudioCreator window.
A message will appear telling you how many jobs (songs) have started encoding.