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How much storage space do you have for music files?

by Marc Bennett CNET staff/forum admin / September 21, 2006 7:21 AM PDT

How much storage space do you have on your hard drive for music files?

500MB or less
501MB to 1GB
1.1GB to 2GB
2.1GB to 5GB
5.1GB to 10GB
10.1GB to 20GB
20.1GB to 30GB
30.1GB to 50GB
More than 50GB

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Over 100 GB
by Elvis_1967 / September 21, 2006 7:51 PM PDT

I have about 60+ GB of music on my laptop, over 50GB backed up on data CDs and 8-12 GB on my mp3 player at any time. My plan is to get an external 320GB hard drive, partitioned into 3 parts. Two parts for backing up the two laptops in the house and the third (the largest part) for music.
All are in mp3 format at a vbr to balance quality & size encoded & normalised using Sound Forge 8.0.
I suspect that when I combine them & de-duplicate them there'll be about 85GB of them... for now, there's always more to come.

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...regarding your comment on de-duplicating your tracks...
by Gdickinson / September 21, 2006 8:33 PM PDT
In reply to: Over 100 GB you use any utilitities to 'clean-up' your music library and keep tracks in some sort of logical order. do you simply depend on iTunes/Windows Media Player to handle it?

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File Structure
by Elvis_1967 / September 21, 2006 10:52 PM PDT

I don't use iTunes ever - I just don't like it. I use the Winamp Lite player most of the time. Organisation is by files, alphabetically by artist, any artist with over 10 tracks gets their own folder... it's a bit anal but I run a digital music library as a job so it rubs off at home...

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Why organise files manually?
by PJWomble / September 25, 2006 7:56 PM PDT
In reply to: File Structure

I use MediaMonkey, and it organises files by artist, and separately by album, genre and other criteria.

Why do people spend time producing their own filing systems? Am I missing something here? Couldn't the time be more productively spent actually listening to the stuff?

The only thing I'd really like would be a nice kind of 'pub jukebox' interface which showed all my album covers in a scrollable list, with perhaps another little clickable list with the tracks on each album. I don't suppose any of you guys would know if such a product is available before I start trying to code one up? Happy

And perhaps a USB coin slot device so that I can make a few quid when my mates come round for a drink and want to listen to an old track or two Happy

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by Glorybox3737 / September 26, 2006 1:07 AM PDT

lol Itunes does just that:) except without the usb coin

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Get iTunes
by bestsealer / September 26, 2006 1:27 AM PDT

re:"The only thing I'd really like would be a nice kind of 'pub jukebox' interface which showed all my album covers in a scrollable list, with perhaps another little clickable list with the tracks on each album. I don't suppose any of you guys would know if such a product is available before I start trying to code one up?"

Don't bother writing one.. Get the latest version of iTunes (v7.0).. it just added ablum art covers in a juke-box-like list. Check it out. And it's free!

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by PJWomble / September 26, 2006 7:55 PM PDT
In reply to: Get iTunes

I had a look at iTunes, but there were a couple of things I couldn't figure out from a brief look:

When one 'imports' MP3 files, does iTunes convert them into another format, or indeed just produce duplicate MP3 files? I wouldn't want to (or have space to) have copies of the 10,000-odd tunes I've already got.

Also, if one imports MP3 files, can one get a tool to import the existing cover art with those files? I realise that if one buys CDs from the iTunes store, or if one converts CDs directly into Apple format and has an account with the shop, then one gets cover art automatically - but is there a tool to do this for cover art one already has?

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view the announcement video
by bestsealer / September 27, 2006 12:41 AM PDT
In reply to: Thanks

If you go to:
you will see an announcement video that was made when Steve Jobs made the new iPod product announcement recently.. towards the end of this video, is quite a comprehensive view of the new iTunes 7.0 software. It includes the cover art search function.

I have never used iTunes, so can't answer all your questions about MP3 files.. my suggestion is to download it and try it with a few of your MP3 tracks before doing your whole library.

With regard to the cover art, Apple says it is making a cover art library available free to any iTunes user. Supposedly, no matter how you got your album tracks into iTunes, there is a function to access the cover art DB and download the cover art for it for free.

Watch the video.. it is very informative. (unfortnately, you will probably need to download and install Quicktime if you don't already have it)

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You need an account/they need your credit card details.
by Elvis_1967 / September 27, 2006 6:11 PM PDT

According to the splash screen on iTunes 7 you have to have an iTunes account to get album art.

So there we go, I keep trying iTunes but it's never quite what I want.

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That sounds about right!
by PJWomble / September 27, 2006 10:50 PM PDT

Credit card details, eh...

Hmm... I just remembered, of course, that there is no such thing as a free lunch.

Time to break out the old Delphi compiler, I think, and get going on something of my own!

Thanks for all your suggestions guys, anyhow.

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You're being steered in the wrong direction!
by Glorybox3737 / October 4, 2006 12:18 PM PDT

You don't need a credit card to do anything on itunes...except buy stuff. I use iTunes daily and have NEVER given them my credit card number.

If you want to have album art just go to advanced> get album art. Then it'll try to do it's best to match the album art to the albums.

I have album art on all my albums I just copied and pasted it to the album by selecting all the songs in the album > right clicking > get info > and pasting the album art in the album art box. It's simple as hell.

Also you can import your mp3's and iTunes won't convert them to any other format...unless you right click and select that option from the menu.

If you have anymore questions go to ilounge. Those are people who actually us iTunes...don't listen to people unfarmiliar with the software...they'll only lead you down the wrong path

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People who use iTunes software
by Elvis_1967 / October 4, 2006 5:41 PM PDT

It's a valid point about letting people who use the software tell you about it - you're the first I've found who's actually been able to answer the credit card question (I know very few people who use iTunes... and none of them are interested in any more than loading up the iPod as far as I can tell)- all I knew was during the installation it says something along the lines of "if you have an account at iTunes you can now access cover art". That made it sound like they wanted card details to me.
I've now tried it & you're right, I gave them nothing & got some cover art. I say some because it's about 50% on a test sample of random tracks. I'll have a bit more of a play before I let it loose on all of them though.

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It's not perfect
by Glorybox3737 / October 5, 2006 4:43 AM PDT

Just remember that the album art search isn't perfect. After using the find album art function...go though your albums and make sure that it's the correct album art. The better your id3 tags the better chance iTunes has of fining what you want.

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Why bother with storing stuff?
by arnim / September 21, 2006 9:11 PM PDT

I've got about 270 GB of music on an external drive with about 15 GB on one of my desktop computers. I try to do a full backup every several months or so but the Internet is changing my perspective on storage - why bother with storing it when it's easy and fast to download the music if you want to listen to it?

(All my music is legally downloaded ( and other companies) or ripped from my own CDs.)

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Because it isn't 'free' to download it!
by PJWomble / September 21, 2006 10:04 PM PDT

With my ISP (Toucan), my supposedly "unlimited" 1mbps connection is limited to 1.5GB total bandwidth per week unless one wants to listen to music in 'off-peak' times (2300 to 0600 local time).

Streaming music during more respectable hours would incur a per-GB charge, and ensure that I was "contending for bandwidth with other *very heavy users* ...".

So, while I don't necessarily object to paying copyright owners for the right to play their music, I *do* object to having to pay twice: once to the copyright owner and once to my ISP every time I want to listen to a track!

Also, a 1mbps connection isn't fast enough to stream music and do anything much else at the same time. I suppse the moral of the story is: check that small print when you sign up for a year's ISP contract! D'oh!

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Good point
by arnim / September 21, 2006 10:11 PM PDT

Good point.

I have a 8 MBit connection with 'unlimited' downloads - memo to self: call ISP to check if unlimited really means unlimited.

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eh, also read the terms and check for....
by ackmondual / September 22, 2006 1:27 AM PDT
In reply to: Good point

Asteriks and superscript numbers denoting footnotes

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300 gig drive, i rip , play and store WAV files.
by CathodeRayTube / September 22, 2006 4:13 AM PDT

i have 66 gigs of music total..the majorety of it is wav files. i like wav better than the compressed lossless formats because it rips and converts faster, and its like having an HQ master of the song, and everything plays .wav files without problems..its codec-less, it allsow has the absolute best sound qualety compaired to the crappy lossy formats like mp3,wma,ogg,m4a etc, and theres no copyright or DRM BS tied to them in anyway. space isent an issue because i have a 300 gig drive and a 120 gig portable mp3 player (the DMC HD500 with a custom hitachi laptop HDD). even with that much space my drive is 20 gigs away from being full (i have a that is in exess of 130 gigs...)so im going to be buying 2 new perpendicular recording 320 gigers soon and set up a RAID 1 for my music and other personal files...and the 300 will become the new dedicated smut drive...

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Why do you prefer WAV files?
by BlazeEagle / September 30, 2006 11:30 AM PDT

I thought MP3's were a better format for music & voice?

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Compression and Loss
by PJWomble / October 2, 2006 1:10 AM PDT

*note that where I mention 'MP3s' here, you can also read 'WMAs' or indeed any other compressed format, to a greater or lesser extent*

Very roughly, the difference between the WAV and MP

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No compromises in music quality permitted.
by TreknologyNet / September 21, 2006 10:21 PM PDT

I have over 100GB dedicated to ripped CDs in MP3 format. Everything is backed up. As I'm a DJ, and I've yet to encounter a venue where high quality is important, everything is played in MP3. I know Micro$oft and Dolby have come out with "better" quality systems, but MP3 holds its own for convenience, and at a venue if the quality isn't 100%, no one is going to notice, because the equipment is meant to be LOUD not QUAKITY.

I never download anything that I can find in a store. I'm not paying for a product based on lossy compression.

When I want to sit and listen to QUALITY with a good pair of Sennheiser headphones, then I get out the vinyl (gasp, shock, horror!).


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by xandeer / September 21, 2006 9:22 PM PDT

I use Vorbis instead of MP3.
And i use around 1GB which is about 400 songs.
who else uses OGG Vorbis?

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Vorbis is good
by MillerLowlife / September 21, 2006 10:14 PM PDT
In reply to: Vorbis

I have a small percentage of Vorbis files and I think it is one of the better music formats around. My music (30Gb so far) is mostly encoded in FLAC, as well as Monkeys Audio files. For me, lossless is the way to go. I realize that most folks consider 25Mb to 35Mb per song as being excessive, but to my ears, it's a very pleasing decision. So much so that just this week I upgraded my master HDD to 750Gb and my slave to 400Gb (including 2 external HDDs this provides me with just under 1.5Tb to just totally go nuts).
I really do think, however, that Vorbis is the best sounding of the lossy audio formats and is definitely an excellent way to have good-sounding music without eating up your HDD storage.

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Ogg Vorbis
by gigigess / September 22, 2006 4:35 PM PDT
In reply to: Vorbis

I too use Ogg Vorbis, mostly. I hate to say "mostly", because it's such a great format, but it's hard to find support for it in anything except for linux and winamp.
I have about 160 Gigs worth of music on my main computer, it's on a seperate drive that both WINDOZE and Linux can access (that's in case WINDOZE crashes, or freezes, or gets infected, or tries too hard, etc, etc).
But for my car head unit, it can only read mp3's on a CD, so I have to convert the songs I want to listen to on the road from .ogg to .mp3.

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by PJWomble / September 25, 2006 10:15 PM PDT
In reply to: Ogg Vorbis

MediaMonkey will play Ogg Vorbis, and also convert to/from this format and many others. As well as loadas other neat trix.

And it's free!

PS No, I *don't* work for MediaMonkey Happy

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m4a to mp3?
by bestsealer / September 26, 2006 1:28 AM PDT
In reply to: MediaMonkey

Can mediamonkey convert Apple's M4A format to MP3?

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Yes, *but*...
by PJWomble / September 26, 2006 10:57 AM PDT
In reply to: m4a to mp3?
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by teamdave / September 21, 2006 10:32 PM PDT

I like a variety of music, but don't have time to be messing with downloading and organizing music. Satellite radio is low cost and requires nothing more of me than to select the place (car, home, office, or portable) and the type of music I feel like listening to. There's no way I could buy a music library the size available through XM or Sirius so while you guys are farting around with it, I'm just enjoying. To each his own.

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Why I own music
by PJWomble / September 21, 2006 11:12 PM PDT
In reply to: NONE

Because it's a tool to modify or reinforce moods and thoughts at any given moment in life!

I like to know that if I need "Georgia On My Mind", "Smells like Teen Spirit", "Feelin Alright With The Crew", "The Girl From Ipanema", "White Man In Hammersmith Palais" or any number of other mood-altering tunes, then I've got instant access to them when I need or want them. They let me feel the way I want to and make life feel that bit less bland.

That's why I have music on my hard drive.

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Ah! What Memories, What Memories from Nineteen Hundred and .
by jschneids / September 22, 2006 7:52 AM PDT
In reply to: Why I own music

Yesm I agree that having the music you love in your PC ready to re-live a happy or sad moment with music is all so very great. I listened to music a lot when I was young and had a lot of fun adventures and now I am getting up in age, but still love that music and can now Reminisce.
Little River Band - Reminiscing (1978)!

I have almost 600 GB in WAV files from my CD' collection. And then another 200 GB in MP3's (mostly 320KB). (Wow, big deal, wasted disks space, huh?)
Freddy Fender - Wasted Days And Wasted Nights (1975)

All my files are kept in alphabetical order by Artist - Title. All the alphabets are seperated by folders since I have so many files for each folder (Example: Folder A, Folder B, etc..) So I can easily find CCR, Stepenwolf, Dylan or Janis Joplin by going to the appropriate alphabetical folder. All file names are like typical : (This is in the Folder N)
Neil Sedaka - Breaking Up Is Hard To Do (1962)(Stereo)
Artist - Song Title (Year) (Stereo, SIMUlated or Mono)
Just so much useless information that makes me happy!
The Edwin Hawkins Singers - Oh Happy Day (1969)

Using the MusicMatch Jukebox (who was one of the first to start using the mp3 format) I can add other category data into each file (be it wav or mp3). I use MM because I found out many moons ago when the other software companies were trying to convince users that the airplane sound that their software creates on the music was the best way to go, just didn't cut it with me. The Castaways - Liar Liar (1965)

WAV files are more appropriate for that absolute best quality studio sound in a quiet room, but when you crank the volume up, it doesn't matter if it's WAV or MP3 (160KB or higher) you just won't notice.
Jackie Wilson - Whispers (Gettin' Louder) (1966)

Enuff said, I love music from Elvis to Sinatra, from Percy Faith to Enya and from Alvin & The Chipmunks to the Zombies. Now I must go and listen to my music for a few hours! Later!
Bill Haley & The Comets - See You Later Alligator (1956)
Ray Stevens - Turn Your Radio On (1974)
Teresa Brewer - Music Music Music (1950)

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