Music Organization Tips

Organizing your digital music collection is pretty time consuming. You probably have a large collection of mp3 files that you have accumulated over the years, either by ripping your own CDs or getting your files from other sources. You probably have a huge number of files that are mis-tagged, wrongly named, or you just do not know what they are. So over the next few weeks we are going to look at ways to get your digital music collection in order. We will cover metadata, figuring out what those unknown tracks are, and getting those files organized so you can find them later.

This series will last a couple of weeks and we will use a variety of tools to do it, below is a list of those tools. I would advise downloading them now rather than later, but that is up to you. Having them downloaded will make them easier to find and install when you need them later. Some of these are free, while others are not.

Music Brainz Classic Tagger We will be using this to figure out what those unknown tracks are.
Tag & Rename This will be used for the actual tagging of the files. Tag & Rename cost money to register and you only have a limited trial offer. So if you do not plan on purchasing the full program, wait to install this until we use it. Though, I recommend this program highly and vouche that it is worth the price of registration
BPM Analyzer This will allow us to calculate the beats per minute in our mp3 files.

Those are some tools we will start with. We might go over a couple of more, but we are definitely going to be using those. So be back here next week for the next part of our Music Organization Tips series.

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4 Responses to Music Organization Tips

  1. Kirk says:

    Glad to see this topic- I am just getting started in this area and have several questions/requests. My situation is that I have a large (over 1k) LP collection (also over 500CDs) and I want to digitize everything. I already have ways of recording the LPs into WAV files using Audacity, then doing some cleanup and separating each cut. The problem is that WAV files do not use tags, and it appears that each type of player prgm has resources to add metadata of some type, but it doesn’t always transfer between prgms. I intend to archive all my LPs in WAV on a large HD and then I can pick and choose what I want to put on my laptop or portable music player in a compressed format. I have chosen mp3 so far exactly for the reason of compatibility/standardization of the tag info. However, it would be nice if there were some way to “tag” the WAV files and have that info transfer to other formats once converted. Maybe you have some ideas or can point us to someone who has looked into this?

    thanx

  2. Kirk says:

    Glad to see this topic- I am just getting started in this area and have several questions/requests. My situation is that I have a large (over 1k) LP collection (also over 500CDs) and I want to digitize everything. I already have ways of recording the LPs into WAV files using Audacity, then doing some cleanup and separating each cut. The problem is that WAV files do not use tags, and it appears that each type of player prgm has resources to add metadata of some type, but it doesn’t always transfer between prgms. I intend to archive all my LPs in WAV on a large HD and then I can pick and choose what I want to put on my laptop or portable music player in a compressed format. I have chosen mp3 so far exactly for the reason of compatibility/standardization of the tag info. However, it would be nice if there were some way to “tag” the WAV files and have that info transfer to other formats once converted. Maybe you have some ideas or can point us to someone who has looked into this?

    thanx

  3. Michael Koby says:

    Kirk, What I would do for your LPs is digitize them to wav using Audacity like you plan to. But instead of storing them in the WAV format store them in a lossless format that supports tagging. My recommendation would be to use the FLAC format since you can tag those files in using Tag Rename (which we will use to tag our files in this series). The cool part is that with lossless compression, if you need to go back to WAV you can and have the exact same file you started with. Another upside is that if you use something to convert the files from FLAC to Mp3, most conversion programs out there that support both formats will carry over the metadata from the FLAC files to the mp3 counterparts.

    The FLAC format is fairly supported but you will not get support for it in iTunes or Windows Media Player. But since you plan on converting to mp3 for the items you want on your laptop or portable player, this won’t be much of a problem. There are FLAC plugins that will give you some functionality for the format on iTunes and Windows Media Player. There are also plugins for Winamp.

  4. Michael Koby says:

    Kirk, What I would do for your LPs is digitize them to wav using Audacity like you plan to. But instead of storing them in the WAV format store them in a lossless format that supports tagging. My recommendation would be to use the FLAC format since you can tag those files in using Tag & Rename (which we will use to tag our files in this series). The cool part is that with lossless compression, if you need to go back to WAV you can and have the exact same file you started with. Another upside is that if you use something to convert the files from FLAC to Mp3, most conversion programs out there that support both formats will carry over the metadata from the FLAC files to the mp3 counterparts.

    The FLAC format is fairly supported but you will not get support for it in iTunes or Windows Media Player. But since you plan on converting to mp3 for the items you want on your laptop or portable player, this won’t be much of a problem. There are FLAC plugins that will give you some functionality for the format on iTunes and Windows Media Player. There are also plugins for Winamp.

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