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Best external CD Ripper for OS X iTunes

Discussion in 'Ripping, Converting, Files & Formats' started by stevedemena, Jul 14, 2015.

  1. stevedemena

    stevedemena New Member

    Hi Kirk,
    I think awhile back you were looking for Blu-Ray drives for one of your Macs. I wondered if during your research you found any drives that were particular fast for ripping CDs. I’m trying to do that research now. I believe the Asus I have is USB 2.0. Would USB 3.0 show any improvement, or is the bottleneck in the CD drive itself?
    Blu-Ray ripping or playing really isn’t a need I have, but if the best CD ripper is also a Blu-Ray player or burner I’d probably get it.
    I’m current using a white ASUS

    Thank you
  2. kirk

    kirk Administrator Staff Member

  3. stevedemena

    stevedemena New Member

    I ended up getting an LG External BE14 - amzn.to/1JoCW1k
    It is USB 3.0 and promised CD Audio reading of 40X.
    Specs: http://www.lg.com/us/data-storage/lg-BE14NU40
    I used the drive in a few scenarios: on my Mac Pro with iTunes (full database - HUGE) and with dbPowerAmp. And on my Retina MacBook Pro, with an empty iTunes Library, directly connected to the laptop with the supplied USB 3.0 cable (no hub).
    Note: The box makes no claim of Mac support: it only has icons for Windows XP, 7 and 8. I assumed OS X was left off due to the Blu-Ray aspect of the drive, which I didn't care about.

    It was working great - fastest CD rips I have encountered. The dbPowerAmp software had the drive in it's AccurateRip database and configured it automatically.

    So I was ripping the recent Warner (EMI) Rafael Kubelik 13CD "The Complete HMV Recordings" and I came to CD 9 and it took iTunes a long time to rip it on my Macbook Pro. I have the extensive options (the single "Use error correction") set (to Yes). This one disc took about 30 minutes to rip but at the end it was happy and I went on to rip some more discs. But I thought, let me spot check CD 8 as that rip time was long. Kirk, the rip was dreadful. On any track LOUD stuttering. Completely unusable. This was actually my main impetus to switch to Windows and dbPowerAMp some 5 or so years ago as my main CD ripper. I was listening to ripped music (with iTunes) and I would get audio glitches from ripped CDs. Now this Kubelik set is brand new and has no visible physical defects or fingerprints on the disc. All my discs that I bought new are immaculate.

    My question is - how can I trust iTunes to rip my CDs?

    dbPowerAmp, and I believe EAC, not only offer many fine-tuning options, they can output a ripping log with your choice of 3 logging levels and if they don't have the warm and fuzzies about a track they'll tell you, and also optionally re-read a track multiple times. iTunes simply acts like everything is OK.
    This CD8 also took longer than usual to rip in dbPoweraAmp, but I played the entire ripped CD and it sounded fine.

    I had one other issue which raises concerns with the relatively new dbPowerAmp for OS X. I was ripping the new Sony 10CD box set "Masterworks of the 20th century" and it just stopped on Track 12 of one of the CDs. About 2/3 of the way through the CD. I tried changing many ripping options but to no avail. Now iTunes ripped the disc and played tracks 11-13 and they sound OK.

    The main appeal of iTunes to me is their Gracenote database. I still edit a lot of tags but at least it gives me a baseline to work from. dbPowerAmp, although it queries FIVE sources (AMG, GD3, MusicBrainz, freedb, and TrackType), has less entries than Gracenote. So I do a lot of typing. Since I get so many new releases, I think my hit ratio % is lower than most. But I know if I rips are good.
  4. kirk

    kirk Administrator Staff Member

  5. stevedemena

    stevedemena New Member

    But if iTunes can't report on the success or failure of a rip, how can I use it reliably?

    I'll read your review and I'll return this drive to Amazon Monday. I'll also play that Kubelik CD in my Oppo CD player and test rip it on four different Windows machines with 4 different DVD drives as I want to see what they report.

    I did some UPS re-arranging today and now having other issues with power distribution. It's driving me nuts right now. Oh I found the problem. I have 3 UPSs and one is actually plugged into another. Ugh. It's a spaghetti mess of cables.


    Here is the type of log dbpoweramp gives me:

    dBpoweramp Digital Audio Extraction Log from 2015-07:17 10:58:20

    Drive & Settings

    Ripping with drive 'disk3 [ASUS - SDRW-08D2S-U]', Drive offset: 0, Overread Lead-in/out: No
    AccurateRip: Active, Using C2: Yes, Cache: 1024 KB, FUA Cache Invalidate: No
    Pass 1 Drive Speed: Max, Pass 2 Drive Speed: Max
    Bad Sector Re-rip:: Drive Speed: Max, Maximum Re-reads: 34

    Encoder: Apple Lossless

    Extraction Log

    Track 1: Ripped LBA 0 to 82547 (18:20) in 1:36. Filename: /Volumes/DroSAT1/M0/dbPowerAmp/Rafael Kubelík - The Complete HMV Recordings (Warner 13CDs 0825646319015)/901 - Symphony No. 4 in F minor, Op. 36: I. Andante sostenuto - Moderato con anima.m4a
    Secure [Pass 1]
    CRC32: 92A7BAEF AccurateRip CRC: D42E82B2 (CRCv2) [DiscID: 006-0010ff89-00588983-36102f06-1]

    Track 2: Ripped LBA 82547 to 123500 (9:06) in 0:35. Filename: /Volumes/DroSAT1/M0/dbPowerAmp/Rafael Kubelík - The Complete HMV Recordings (Warner 13CDs 0825646319015)/902 - Symphony No. 4 in F minor, Op. 36: II. Andantino in modo di canzona.m4a
    Secure [Pass 1]
    CRC32: 1D42694C AccurateRip CRC: 03D8967C (CRCv2) [DiscID: 006-0010ff89-00588983-36102f06-2]

    Track 3: Ripped LBA 123500 to 150200 (5:56) in 0:21. Filename: /Volumes/DroSAT1/M0/dbPowerAmp/Rafael Kubelík - The Complete HMV Recordings (Warner 13CDs 0825646319015)/903 - Symphony No. 4 in F minor, Op. 36: III. Scherzo: Pizzicato ostinato.m4a
    Secure [Pass 1]
    CRC32: 596A263B AccurateRip CRC: 43FDDFD6 (CRCv2) [DiscID: 006-0010ff89-00588983-36102f06-3]

    Track 4: Ripped LBA 150200 to 191272 (9:07) in 0:30. Filename: /Volumes/DroSAT1/M0/dbPowerAmp/Rafael Kubelík - The Complete HMV Recordings (Warner 13CDs 0825646319015)/904 - Symphony No. 4 in F minor, Op. 36: IV. Finale: Allegro con fuoco.m4a
    Secure [Pass 1]
    CRC32: C437CC9E AccurateRip CRC: C7B996F1 (CRCv2) [DiscID: 006-0010ff89-00588983-36102f06-4]

    Track 5: Ripped LBA 191272 to 255702 (14:19) in 0:42. Filename: /Volumes/DroSAT1/M0/dbPowerAmp/Rafael Kubelík - The Complete HMV Recordings (Warner 13CDs 0825646319015)/905 - Symphony No. 5 in E minor, Op. 64: I. Andante - Allegro con anima.m4a
    Secure [Pass 1]
    CRC32: 1A415A26 AccurateRip CRC: C4D7E2F9 (CRCv2) [DiscID: 006-0010ff89-00588983-36102f06-5]

    Track 6: Ripped LBA 255702 to 310772 (12:14) in 0:33. Filename: /Volumes/DroSAT1/M0/dbPowerAmp/Rafael Kubelík - The Complete HMV Recordings (Warner 13CDs 0825646319015)/906 - Symphony No. 5 in E minor, Op. 64: II. Andante cantabile.m4a
    Secure [Pass 1]
    CRC32: 8B65F507 AccurateRip CRC: 96B190E2 (CRCv2) [DiscID: 006-0010ff89-00588983-36102f06-6]


    6 Tracks Ripped Securely
  6. Carla

    Carla New Member

    I'd suggest taking a look at XLD, a free audio converter which can also rip CDs and which supports AccurateRip. There are various guides to setting it up for secure ripping. Here's the one from the Hydrogen Audio forum. It supports a variety of formats for input and output, including MP3, AAC and Apple Lossless.
  7. stevedemena

    stevedemena New Member

    Hi, I have XLD and dbpoweramp for OS X.

    My question was how can one trust iTunes to rip CDs if it can produce garbled horrendous rips with no warnings?

  8. Carla

    Carla New Member

    Ah, I understand, my apologies. I gave up on using iTunes for ripping CDs long ago (except for audiobooks—XLD seems to have major problems ripping them which iTunes does not) because it's not trustworthy, even with "use error correction" turned on. It would be nice if Apple provided a more trustworthy ripping process but given how they've been pushing the iTunes store and now Apple Music I'm not going to hold my breath waiting for it to happen.

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