Ripping CDs in iTunes - huuuge track lengths put a spanner in the works

Discussion in 'PC and I.T support/Advice posts' started by Bobby Dazzler, Feb 15, 2009.

  1. Bobby Dazzler

    Bobby Dazzler MB Club Veteran

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    I've noticed this a few times now, most recently Elbow: The Seldom Seen Kid.

    When ripping a CD in iTunes, one or more track apears to be absolutely huuuge, many hours in length. In this latest case, Track 1 is 59:58 and Track 2 is 15:04:22!! :crazy:

    Those tracks appear not to play through iTunes but do in a regular CD player.

    Not only do they refuse to play, but because the durations are obviously inaccurate, iTunes is unable to download track data.

    Any ideas on what's causing it and how to fix it?
     
  2. verytalldave

    verytalldave Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    If the tracks were actually as long as you are informed, then they would be truly massive in size.
    I would see how many bytes each track actually is.
    If they are "normal" size, then clearly something is wrong, possibly embedded information maybe. I would take a look at the track using notebook is possible and see if these times are part of the body of the file.
    If they are, then its a fairly simple case of editing the text to get a time which is reasonable.
    I would say this should only be attempted if you know what you are doing -AND before you attempt anything, make a backup copy just in case anything goes wrong.
     
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    Bobby Dazzler

    Bobby Dazzler MB Club Veteran

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    The tracks aren't really that long. iTunes seems to think they are though.

    Been trying to remember which other CDs have been affected but I can't remember what I had for tea tonight so there's not too much chance of that!! :D

    PS Nah, I don't know what I'm doing!!
     
  4. verytalldave

    verytalldave Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Try ripping them again. Sometimes the CD's skip and throw up all sorts of errors.
    Try cleaning the CD's properly - not just a quick wipe with a cloth.
    I was given a CD once that looked like it had been driven over by a centurian tank and then used at a kids tea party as a place mat. Needless to say it wouldnt play anything.
    I cleaned it gently using JIF (now called CIF I believe). And after it worked OK!
    I dont recommend that as a method of cleaning, but it just goes to show a proper clean can work wonders.
    Just like a Double Diamond (remember those?).
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2009
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    Bobby Dazzler

    Bobby Dazzler MB Club Veteran

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    Was brand new, came straight out of the CD case and into the CD-ROM drive tray, and unmarked.

    I bought it from an online retailer, so hassle to replace - especially given it works.

    I wonder whether it's 'designed-in' to prevent making illegal copies by ripping to MP3 and re-distributing?
     
  6. verytalldave

    verytalldave Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    My daughter has ripped literally hundreds of CD's to her iTunes library and has never ever mentioned anything like this.
    Maybe its your PC CD player lens that needs a clean. You can buy special CD lens cleaner discs for that specific purpose. Its a fault that is more likely to occour in a home where smokers live or where the PC is near the kitchen. Its the micro-fine airborne particulates that can cause the skipping problems.
    Sort of grasping at straws here.....
    Has anyone else on the forum had a similar experience?
     
  7. hitenhirani

    hitenhirani Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Just a quick thought....
    Apologies in advance, for the vague destructions, I dont have iTunes installed on my work pc.

    In iTunes, if you to go the Preferences menu item (I think View, at the bottom, Preferences...) then its under one of the tabs, Music or something, where there is a big box with the directory path to your iTunes music library, there should be another little tab for Import Music or similar.

    Change the settings for when a CD is inserted, and the import method, it might be set to AAC by default, and the codec settings might be screwed on your pc, so safest bet is to select MP3. Lame I think is the codec built in into iTunes. Use a constant bitrate (CBR), or 'dont use Variable Bitrate' and select a bitrate, higher the bitrate, higher the quality, bigger the file size. I geenrally go for 192 or 256.

    Reason to use CBR, is so the bitrate is set constant, and does not fluctuate giving a, well, constant bitrate (believe it or not!)

    Let me know how you get on.
     
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    Bobby Dazzler

    Bobby Dazzler MB Club Veteran

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    Thanks for your suggestion hitenhirani.

    Done some more digging. Track one (just about 1 hour in duration) is actually the whole album. Track two (pretty much 15 hours in duration) won't play.

    Turns out there's a hidden track - attached to the final track - and that's what's causing the problem. Having Googled it, there's a workaround but very manual. Doh!!
     
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    Bobby Dazzler

    Bobby Dazzler MB Club Veteran

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    In case anyone else gets the same problem ripping CDs with hidden or bonus tracks here's how to fix.

    1. Check which tracks are show with correct timings (check CD sleeve or Google the album name), and work out which track is which album song.
    2. Rip all tracks which appear to be correct, and note which are missing.
    3. Check that the long track contains the missing songs, and work out at which point song starts and finishes so you can splice at the right point.
    4. De-select tracks already ripped, and select the long track to be spliced.
    5. Right click the long track, and select Get Info, then Options.
    6. Set start and stop times for first track to be spliced, and tick corresponding check boxes.
    7. Rip missing track.
    8. Repeat 4-7 for all missing tracks.
     
  10. Antharro

    Antharro Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Just a thought. Is this a genuine audio CD you're trying to rip? The face it has a second "track" says it's probably got a data section which would make it a different type of CD.

    Background: There are multiple different types of CD, audio CD is just one of them. Multimedia CDs, CDs with data, CDs with video, all sorts.

    If it doesn't have this logo then it's not a genuine audio CD, even though it plays in a CD player, which would mean that some programs will have problems ripping its contents.
     
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    Bobby Dazzler

    Bobby Dazzler MB Club Veteran

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    Thanks for Antharro.

    Yes it's a proper audio CD.

    It seems hidden tracks are a known problem for ripping CDs - certainly for iTunes.

    My understanding is that usually a hidden track is inserted in the gap between visible tracks, and usually appears at the end of the album - the music finishes but the track carries on with several minutes of silence, before the hidden song starts, but which is technically the same track.

    The fix is to manually splice.

    I wonder whether it's a conspiracy to make it difficult for people to rip.
     
  12. verytalldave

    verytalldave Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    You might be able to glean some extra information here..........
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Seldom_Seen_Kid

    What may have happened in this case is that the silent interlude threw it and it had a wobble.

    Also............
    Some audio CD's have "bonus" videos on them. These will only show up and play on either a PC DVD or TV DVD player. an ordinary CD player wont even see them as its an unrecognised file type. These tracks are usually mentioned on the sleeve notes with the CD - but not always.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2009

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