This guide is primarily intended in case I have to format my daily driver. Still, I felt it would be worthwhile to make it public knowledge for those new to this kind of stuff. I consider the end result to be a high sound quality mp3 with a reasonable file size.
The instructions are a mixture of verbatim and cropped information from Übernet (inaccessible as of 04-17-2007) and the Hydrogenaudio Knowledgebase, plus some personal configuration settings.
·o· Feedback is greatly appreciated.
·o· Do let me know if any of the links below die.
·o· If you have Daemon Tools installed, I recommend uninstalling it, then rebooting the PC, before following the steps below. I’ve experienced a problem where EAC only detects the Daemon Tools virtual drive, instead of the physical drive. Re-installing Daemon Tools afterwards shouldn’t cause problems.
·o· This article is intended to get EAC installed/configured quickly, so we’ll skip EACs test mechanisms that (inaccurately) determine what CD/DVD drive is the best to use and what features it supports. Start off by using what you think is your best drive. If it works fine, stick with it. If you find the extraction process to be slow and think another drive would be faster, try another drive by selecting it from the drop-box at the top-left. If you do end up using another drive, you may need to tweak options in step 12!
1. Download Adaptec ASPI driver and extract the contents to the default location (c:\adaptec\aspi).
·o· Open a command prompt, navigate to c:\adaptec\aspi, then issue ONE of the following commands, depending on your OS:
Windows XP 32-bit:
Windows XP 64-bit:
(I’m running XP 32-bit.)
·o· REBOOT THE PC!
2. Download EAC v0.95 beta 4 (without CDRDAO package), and extract the contents to “C:\eac-0.95b4″. I’ll reference this as the EAC main directory, in the rest of this article.
3. Download LAME 3.97 final, extract the contents anywhere on your hard drive, then copy “lame.exe” and paste it in the EAC main directory.
4. Remove all CDs/DVDs from all CD/DVD drives of the PC that you want to use for ripping.
5. If you’ve previously run EAC on this PC (even just once), clean the registry of all things EAC-related following the instructions immediately below. Otherwise, proceed to step 6.
·o· … click ‘Start | Run’, type regedit, and hit Enter.
·o· Go to the key HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\AWSoftware\EAC, and delete it…
6. Run EAC.exe from the EAC main directory.
·o· Upon running EAC for the first time, a setup wizard will appear. Close it by clicking Cancel, and close and restart EAC.
·o· After restarting, re-run the config wizard by clicking EAC -> Configuration Wizard then click Next.
·o· EAC will now list all CD drives it found in your system. Check which drive you feel is best (i.e. the newest, fastest, name brand) then click Next.
·o· At the “Extraction Preferences” window, select I prefer to have accurate results then click Next.
·o· At the “Feature Database” window, select Use these values to configure this drive then click Next.
·o· At the “Drive Rating” window, click Next.
·o· At the “Encoder Configuration” window, uncheck Install and configure… and click Next.
·o· At the “freedb Configuration” window, type “.@.”. In fact, you can leave the field blank. Click Next.
·o· Finally, select I am an expert, let me use the full potential of EAC and click Finish to close the wizard.
8. EAC / EAC options:
“Error recovery quality”: High
“On unknown CDs,”: CHECK (then change the radio value to “automatically access online freedb database”)
“Beep after extraction finished”: UNCHECK
“Eject CD after extraction finished”: CHECK
“Automatically write status report after extraction”: CHECK
“Naming scheme”: %A – %Y – %C\%A – %N – %T
“Use this directory”: “c:\eac rips” (or any other directory you’d like – just make sure it’s a local drive). I’ll reference this as the EAC rips directory in the rest of this article. If the directory doesn’t already exist, you’ll be prompted to create it when you click the Interface tab in the next step.
Confirm that “Installed external ASPI interface” is selected and grayed out.
Click OK to close the EAC Options window.
9. EAC / Drive options:
“Show this information next time”: UNCHECK
Extraction Method tab
“Drive has ‘Accurate Stream’ feature”: CHECK (this may already be checked and grayed out, which is fine)
“Drive caches audio data”: CHECK
“Drive is capable of retrieving C2 error information”: UNCHECK
Note: The way I understand it, it’s difficult to determine if a drive truly supports these features, so it’s generally recommended to use these settings initially, and change them if needed (based on the results of the log file). See step 12 for more detailed information.
“Spin up drive before extraction”: CHECK
Note: Enabling this makes sense to me, to get the drive “warmed up”, but if you observe that the beginning of a song is missing (or corrupt, or has glitches), uncheck this option to see if that helps.
Offset / Speed tab
“Allow speed reduction during extraction”: UNCHECK
Note: This should make a significant difference during the extraction (audio CD -> .wav file) phase.
Click OK to close the Drive Options window.
10. Look at the top-left of EAC and note which drive is selected. Insert a pristine, factory pressed audio CD (NOT a burned disc) in that drive. A freedb window should briefly appear then disappear. If not, you may have the CD in the wrong drive, so try another. If the tracks are listed in the main window, then you’re using the correct drive.
11. Solely for testing purposes, click the first track then press Shift+F5 to rip it to a .wav file (which will be in the EAC rips directory). After the CD ejects, click OK and confirm that “No errors occured” is displayed.
12. Click OK again then go to your EAC rips directory, open the log file, and note the “Read mode”. If it’s “Secure with NO C2, accurate stream, disable cache” you’re good to go. Otherwise, return to EAC / Drive Options / Extraction Method tab and check or uncheck the respective incorrect options(s), then rip the first track again the same way. Check the newly-created log file and confirm the “Read mode” is “Secure with NO C2, accurate stream, disable cache”.
13. EAC / Compression Options
External Compression tab
“Use external program for compression”: CHECK
“Parameter passing scheme”: User Defined Encoder (far bottom choice)
“Program, including path, used for compression”: Browse to your EAC main directory, then double-click “lame.exe”. The field should then read “C:\eac-0.95b4\lame.exe”.
“Additional command line options:
-V2 --vbr-new --add-id3v2 --pad-id3v2 --ta "%a" --tt "%t" --tg "%m" --tl "%g" --ty "%y" --tn "%n" %s %d
“Use CRC check”: UNCHECK
“Add ID3 tag”: UNCHECK
Note: IDE tags are handled via the LAME command line options above. It’s better to let LAME handle this instead of EAC.
“Check for external programs return code”: CHECK
Click OK to close the Compression Options window.
14. Download/install AccurateRip, carefully following the post-installation instructions.
More information is available here.
In conclusion, note that the online freedb database is helpful, but don’t trust the submissions. You’ll see that there are plenty of tpyos to be found! As far as capitalization is concerned, I recommend following the format of whatever is on the CD itself (i.e. if the tracks are all UPPERCASE, lowercase, Or a Mixture). Double check the spelling of the CD Title, CD Artist, and Titles (track names). If you’ve made changes to an existing database entry, or if there was no previous database entry, be sure to submit your changes to the freedb by pressing Alt+U.