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Unsure on format and bitrates


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I am getting back into playing with my md players.  I have 3 working Sony models.  MZ-DH710, MZ-NF810CK & MZ-NH900.  I LOVE the quality of the sound of the MD music!!!

I have the latest Sonic Stage and drivers.  (A really big thanks to those who made this possible)

As a test, I added 12 different files of the same song to the library using different bitrates and formats.  All 12 files sound very siimilar in sound quality. 

I have 40 MD discs and 10 Hi-MD discs. 

Question A:  I do not know which format/bitrate etc. to use.

Any suggestions would be really appreciated. 

Question B: Can I make my library on an external hard-drive?

Hoping for a reply.

Thanks so much.


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The rule of thumb: do whatever works. If you can find a path that accomplishes what your needs are, be happy. For example, I find that if I am recording off the internet radio that up to 128kbps (MP3 stream) will usually record perfectly at LP4 (66kbps ATRAC3), even music. I have hundreds of hours to prove it. To record at LP4 you probably want a deck (ie not portable), and if possible you should use digital (optical) input from your source.

For a higher data rate stream (eg 320kbps), it is hard to fault Hi-SP (256 kbps Atrac3+)

For LP transcriptions I find SP or Hi-SP will do. Although the latter has a slightly less "pleasing" colour to it, it transcodes and can be edited quite well. To edit ATRAC you need Sound Forge 9 or better. There is little point in always converting to WAV before editing, as SF takes care of all that internally in a completely transparent manner.

What you will have to do with uploads (from MD to PC) is to learn to use the File Conversion Tool so that you can edit your uploads. Also upgrades to Windows don't wreck the encrypted files because FCT will decrypt them permanently.

Note: you cannot upload SP or LP2 or LP4 without the (in)famous MZ-RH1. So with your hardware I would generally record at Hi-SP. There's one annoying feature of Sound Forge - it cannot understand the encoded "LPCM uncompressed" 1411kbps format as produced by direct recording. For this you would have to convert to WAV. Honestly, it's almost never necessary.

Oh yes, one more thing: for importing CD's use ATRAC Advanced Lossless. This is a good container format and you can convert after the fact to any ATRAC or MP3 format quite easily.



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