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CD ripping drive recommendations

Hi everyone -

I can see this has been done to death over the years, but I'm having real trouble tracking down quality drives for CD ripping, so I'd really appreciate any pointers or hints and tips anyone can give.

I'm in the planning stages of a sizeable CD archival project. It includes a number of promo / short-run / limited distribution audio CDs that aren't likely to be in the AccurateRip database. There's pressure to dispose of the original media, so I want to aim for accurate, high-quality rips that are right first time.

The dBpoweramp CD Drive Accuracy report is very useful, but doesn't specify whether the drives have known-good C2 support, HTOA support, etc, which is what I'm looking for; and unfortunately it appears that the database at daefeatures.co.uk hasn't been updated for some time.

Does anyone have any recommendations? Preferably standard half-height internal SATA drives, but I'm flexible. Ideally I'm looking for a model that's still available new and I can order a few units of, but I'll scour through eBay if I have to.

Thanks


Re: CD ripping drive recommendations

Reply #2
Check out dBPowerAmp's sticky on 2019 drives. Perhaps that will help?

Thanks, but I've already seen it. It's very helpful, but it doesn't give any information on features the drives support (C2, HTOA, etc), which I'm looking for especially since many of the CDs I need to rip aren't in the AccurateRip database.

Re: CD ripping drive recommendations

Reply #3
Thanks, but I've already seen it. It's very helpful, but it doesn't give any information on features the drives support (C2, HTOA, etc), which I'm looking for especially since many of the CDs I need to rip aren't in the AccurateRip database.

Another suggestion: Try myce. They're more computer-hardware-oriented than HydrogenAudio. True, they're more into DVDs, but they have a dedicated topic for the top two drives on the list I referenced, and you might get a more accurate answer there.

https://club.myce.com/c/cd-dvd-and-blu-ray-writers
https://club.myce.com/t/asus-bw-16d1ht/306505
https://club.myce.com/t/pioneer-bdr-208-s08xlt-208d-208m-208e-u-j-xj-2208-bdr-s08-s08j-xlb/302750

I'd also try posting on illustrate's forums.

https://forum.dbpoweramp.com/forumdisplay.php?54-CD-Ripper

HTH

Re: CD ripping drive recommendations

Reply #4
If the project was important as you say, I would rip 3 times on very different drives (all offset calibrated), then compare the AR result for each of the rips. Even with C2 there is a % detection hole, it is likely that hole will be considerably less if using different drives.

Choosing the drives, a blueray, a dvd drive and an old skool plextor. All 3 types of drives have different size lasers, which would read errors differently.

Re: CD ripping drive recommendations

Reply #5
Many thanks for the helpful responses.

I think the best next step will be to order a selection of new drives (well, an Asus DRW-24D5MT and an LG GH24NSD1, which seem to be the only non-BD drives available in my country for which supplies can be guaranteed at the moment). I'll run them through their paces and update this thread in the next week or two for the benefit of anyone finding it in the future.

I've also rustled up other drives in the office (including a BD writer) and see what happens.

Re: CD ripping drive recommendations

Reply #6
... and an old skool plextor. ..
I recently bought a used PC I found in a thrift store for the sole reason that it had a Plextor drive. It's getting harder and harder to find IDE support. You might just try an ordinary drive in an older machine.
Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?  ;~)

 

Re: CD ripping drive recommendations

Reply #7
USB IDE controllers work fine.

Re: CD ripping drive recommendations

Reply #8

Choosing the drives, a blueray, a dvd drive and an old skool plextor. All 3 types of drives have different size lasers, which would read errors differently.

That's interesting information. I've been considering re-ripping to FLAC all my CDs that pre-date my switch from MP3 circa 2007. I have a good deal of promos, etc. that probably won't be in the AccurateRip database. I plan on dedicating a machine to this, and this helps inform my decision of what optical drives to put into it from my collection.

Re: CD ripping drive recommendations

Reply #9
USB IDE controllers work fine.

I've seen several references to ripping problems using a USB - IDE bridge. I'm sure this depends on the bridge chipset involved, but I don't recall the specifics to that degree. I'd do some research before going down that path to make sure you purchase a device with a chipset that meets the requirements to accurately verify discs.

Re: CD ripping drive recommendations

Reply #10
I ripped most of my CD collection with a cheap external LG drive but most of them were in the AR database. But while reading this thread I remember that I had a Toshiba CD-ROM drive which claimed that it had a special mode to extract audio. I can't remember if this was somehow special or better because back then I didn't know about MP3 or had enough space to store uncompressed PCM-WAV files.

Re: CD ripping drive recommendations

Reply #11
I've now received the Asus DRW-24D5MT and LG GH24NSD1 drives that were ordered. In my country at least, these appear to be the only two non-BD half-height internal SATA drives for which ongoing supplies are readily available at time of writing. I've submitted details for both drives to the daefeatures.co.uk database.

As promised, I've done some testing and I'm updating this thread. Hopefully it'll be useful if anyone finds themselves in the same position as me (about to undertake a sizeable, last-chance audio CD archival project with a number of rare releases) in what appears to be the waning days of the PC optical drive market!

TL;DR: They're both absolutely fine and either model will do well for audio CD archival work.

Both drives are quiet in operation, although to my ears the LG was slightly quieter than the Asus model at full speed. Read speeds of both seemed perfectly good, although I didn't check the numbers. I didn't test anything to do with CD or DVD burning.

Both drives support HTOA reading, both support FUA according to dBpoweramp, and neither support overreading (although to be honest I'm not sure what purpose that feature has).

I created a DAE Quality test disc as described on the EAC website, and used the same disc to test both models and a number of others too. Although I understand the DAE Quality test isn't exactly the be-all and end-all of drive testing, it was interesting that both came back with a C2 accuracy score of 100%, whereas no other drive I tested did. This would seem to indicate that the C2 error detection algorithms for both drives are good quality. Uncorrectable errors produced notably quieter audio artefacts from the LG than from the Asus.

So, both would seem to be perfectly fine for my use, but the LG came out slightly ahead. Given that it's also slightly cheaper than the Asus, I suppose the LG GH24NSD1 would be my recommendation - and I've gone ahead and ordered another three units.

Re: CD ripping drive recommendations

Reply #12
neither support overreading (although to be honest I'm not sure what purpose that feature has).
It allows a drive to read into lead-in/out. Some CDs may contain a bit of data there, which will be truncated or filled with zeroes if drive can't read it.

Re: CD ripping drive recommendations

Reply #13
I bought an LG BH16NS40 because I thought paying that much money I was sure to get a drive that could rip HTOA. Sure it goes through the actions, but produces tracks full of silence. Seems there's no way, short of buying the drive and testing it, to know if new drives can rip HTOA.
Later, I found a Dell (PLDS) DH-16D5S for five bucks in a pawn shop and it works perfect for the type of archiving you're talking about.
Processed audio in java and python.

Re: CD ripping drive recommendations

Reply #14
I bought an LG BH16NS40 because I thought paying that much money I was sure to get a drive that could rip HTOA. Sure it goes through the actions, but produces tracks full of silence.

One of the other drives I tested was a pricey Lite-On iHBS212 BD writer, which also can't rip HTOA - in fact it makes some very disconcerting noises when it tries to. Maybe it's something to do with the nature of all BD drives..?

Re: CD ripping drive recommendations

Reply #15
I still have a larger pile of Plextor PX-40 TSI / Ultraplex 40 once bought for worse times, but SCSI cables have become rare...

 
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