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Giving up on downloads

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Posted on November 23, 2019 at 07:38:24
Felixer
Industry Professional

Posts: 34
Joined: August 2, 2010
I have found managing download files too much trouble. Many have incomplete meta data, or don't sort properly (a problem particularly for classical music, and especially with multiple works on one disc), or there is no understanding of what constitutes a work with multiple movements, as distinct from multiple tracks. Anyway, I digress. I find SACDs more satisfying in every respect (and CDs if I can't find it on SACD) - especially when I want to collect an important disc. And I also occasionally enjoy streaming, mainly as a method of discovery.

So that leaves me with the question - what do I do with my old downloads? Some were 'free', but others I bought from places like iTunes. Can I sell them? Can I give them to charities?

 

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RE: Giving up on downloads, posted on November 23, 2019 at 11:11:31
Wojciech
Audiophile

Posts: 2112
Joined: June 23, 2009
Can't you just keep them, Those downloads. Unlike CD or SACD most would not consider buying "used" downloads I assume. But if the downloads will come in the form of a nice HD drive of few TB capacity than there is a market.

 

RE: Giving up on downloads, posted on November 23, 2019 at 14:09:04
DewDude
Audiophile

Posts: 157
Joined: February 13, 2002
It's a shame you feel this way. When I started with PC audio 22 years ago, we didn't have any software for organization or the like. The only thing metadata was good for was displaying information on playback. This resulted in hand-organizing files and treating our music collection much like a physical CD one.

To this day I still hand-organize my music and literally have zero reliance on metadata at all. Each album or disc gets it's own folder, all the tracks that are on that album/disc go in to that folder. The filenames are usually in some format of track number first with the track title somewhere in there.

It sounds barbaric, but it does help to ensure my stuff is organized the way I want it to be. But I think if you went "backwards" and tried a file/folder organization and did things to where metadata didn't count for much; it might work for you.

Like I said, this is how I've been organizing my music collection for 22 years.

As far as your downloads; you can't do anything with them except keep them or delete them. There are no methods to resell or donate downloads.

 

Classical metadata, posted on November 23, 2019 at 14:34:07
Dave_K
Audiophile

Posts: 2805
Joined: September 30, 2014
I learned a long time ago not to trust anybody else's metadata. So whether I'm downloading an album or ripping one, I always check and frequently correct the metadata. I don't think I've ever downloaded or ripped a classical CD that didn't need some hand entry. The best time to do that is up front, because it will be harder to muster the effort later. I use dBpoweramp, which can batch edit tags and has a Windows Explorer extension.

 

RE: Classical metadata - agreed, posted on November 23, 2019 at 16:04:14
PAR
Audiophile

Posts: 1309
Location: South London, UK
Joined: June 4, 2019
Contributor
  Since:
June 4, 2019
Downloading or ripping CDs requires a discipline for metadata that it is best to adopt from day one. Going back to refit metadata by amending ID3 files is a frustrating process and I would not like to try this with a collection of thousands of albums.

The difficulty with classical music seems not to lie fundamentally with those who have created the original metadata file ( normally the record label for downloads) but the designers of software players who still cater only for pop/rock music fans by only displaying album, artist and track information even though other fields such as composer exist completed in the metadata that is embedded in the file. The concept of "work" or "act"(for opera) is , nevertheless, still not properly dealt with. In regard to the latter I am pleased that Qobuz is dealing with the issue but only for the streaming side of things as that is where they are able to control things.

I have noticed some improvement to the accuracy of what is provided though. It instructive to use Perfect Tunes via dbpower amp when ripping and to compare the results for albums released in the last two years compared to those that came out five years ago or longer.

The new Roon Valence software seems to offer a good solution too if it lives up to the promises.

Anyway for the time being one has to be prepared to put some effort into cleaning up metadata or finding a work around to introduce useful information into a player format that does not cater for it. For example adding the name of the composer before a track title where the album consists of works by various composers.
"We need less, but better" - Dieter Rams

 

RE: Giving up on downloads, posted on November 23, 2019 at 16:54:13
Posts: 1829
Location: Orange Co., Ca
Joined: September 19, 2001
Hi Felixer,
I empathize over classical metadata. My OCD side forces me to make my library cosistent (an opus I suspect will never be complete).


As for your downloads, you only purchased a license to play the file. You have no right to re-sell or even give it away. The same holds for physical media, except that you own the disc but not the recording. So you can sell a disc but you should not keep a recording for yourself.

Regards,
13DoW

 

RE: Giving up on downloads, posted on November 24, 2019 at 08:00:37
PAR
Audiophile

Posts: 1309
Location: South London, UK
Joined: June 4, 2019
Contributor
  Since:
June 4, 2019
" have zero reliance on metadata at all"

" The filenames are usually in some format of track number first with the track title somewhere in there. ". Er, that is metadata.
"We need less, but better" - Dieter Rams

 

RE: Giving up on downloads, posted on November 24, 2019 at 08:15:02
Mel
Audiophile

Posts: 2383
Location: New York City Area
Joined: February 21, 2001
I find much this advice quite impractical and somewhat absurd.

 

Yes, I don't think he's quite correct - at least as far as some download sites are concerned, posted on November 24, 2019 at 08:54:05
Chris from Lafayette
Bored Member

Posts: 18282
Location: SF Bay Area
Joined: February 17, 2004
Contributor
  Since:
February 6, 2012
I've definitely seen some sites where, under the FAQ's, they answer the question, "What if I want to give a particular download as a gift (by means of a flash drive or whatever)?" They say you can do it, as long as you delete the file on your own hard drive once you've given the file away.

As for keeping the rips of CD's etc on your own drive after you've gotten rid of the physical product, my understanding is that that is not legal, strictly speaking. However, in practice, I doubt that most users are that scrupulous.

 

RE: Giving up on downloads, posted on November 24, 2019 at 13:18:03
Posts: 1829
Location: Orange Co., Ca
Joined: September 19, 2001
Hi Mel,
I am not a legal expert but I think I am more practical than absurd. I recall someone trying to setup a download re-selling scheme where the intermediary would guarantee your copy was removed from your library as part of the transaction but it did not come to fruition.

13DoW

 

RE: Giving up on downloads, posted on November 24, 2019 at 19:16:55
Mel
Audiophile

Posts: 2383
Location: New York City Area
Joined: February 21, 2001
"the intermediary would guarantee your copy was removed from your library"?? Really?? That's a plan I'd like to see.

 

RE: Yes, I don't think he's quite correct - at least as far as some download sites are concerned, posted on November 24, 2019 at 19:29:36
Mel
Audiophile

Posts: 2383
Location: New York City Area
Joined: February 21, 2001
Chris,

I don't really understand why we talk about the law in these situations. The law is unenforced and unenforceable . . . other than for mass counterfeiting and sale.

Creators of media entertainment take full financial advantage of the technology and price their products knowing full well that copying is part of the sale, part of the deal. Their accompanying legal pronouncements notwithstanding.

 

RE: Giving up on downloads, posted on November 24, 2019 at 20:17:50
Posts: 1829
Location: Orange Co., Ca
Joined: September 19, 2001
IIRC, when you offered your download for sale the system would access your library and delete any copies. That, plus music companies not wanting people selling digital copies of their music if probably why it never came to pass.

 

RE: Giving up on downloads, posted on November 25, 2019 at 05:59:55
Mel
Audiophile

Posts: 2383
Location: New York City Area
Joined: February 21, 2001
"the system would access your library and delete any copies"?? Really??
And never make any mistakes as to what is deleted?? Talk about being invasive!! And what about the safety copy I have on my 4TB USB disk??

Like I said elsewhere, distributors know there will be copying and (should) factor that into their pricing.

Dealers of old CDs apart, hobbyists are unloading their CD and SACD collections while keeping the files with safety copies. They sound better and are much easier to handle as files. Others are copying from friends and from public libraries. No amount of legal pontificating is going to stop this. Most of the material, I think, would not be purchased new or is OOP anyway. I do buy CDs from time to time, but almost never new. Really no reason to buy new. CDs are not like LPs.

 

What!!!, posted on November 25, 2019 at 19:28:58
Kal Rubinson
Reviewer

Posts: 11691
Location: New York
Joined: June 5, 2002
I have bought many downloads and there is no way that any of the vendors can access my library, let alone delete them. I own that copy.

Perhaps you didn't really buy them.



 

I'm necessarily disagreeing with you as to how things work in practice, posted on November 27, 2019 at 00:34:19
Chris from Lafayette
Bored Member

Posts: 18282
Location: SF Bay Area
Joined: February 17, 2004
Contributor
  Since:
February 6, 2012
In fact, in the days of cassettes, I broke the law with Ivan Moravec one time! He was telling me that he wished he could hear the Cortot re-orchestration of the Chopin Second Piano Concerto. I made a cassette copy of my Haskil/Markevitch recording of that work (which uses the Cortot orchestration) and gave it to him the next day! I'm hoping the statute of limitations has expired for my criminal act! ;-)

 

NOT necessarily disagreeing - sorry! [nt] ;-), posted on November 27, 2019 at 00:37:06
Chris from Lafayette
Bored Member

Posts: 18282
Location: SF Bay Area
Joined: February 17, 2004
Contributor
  Since:
February 6, 2012

 

RE: Giving up on downloads, posted on November 30, 2019 at 14:22:17
fstein
Audiophile

Posts: 2204
Location: fstein
Joined: May 18, 2006
I agree with downloads not being worth the bother, especially if CD quality. SACDs I can at least use as coasters. I can never find the files on my HD or convert them from FLAC to something my apple can read. And who needs a 5th copy of Kind of Blue?

 

delete them, posted on November 30, 2019 at 14:23:31
BSH
delete them.

 

RE: Giving up on downloads, posted on December 1, 2019 at 17:39:45
Daverz
Audiophile

Posts: 2058
Location: So. California
Joined: September 24, 2002
I use the Custom Browse plugin on LMS to create my own menus that allow me to browse my collection by composer, work, and specific recording. By default LMS does have a Composer menu, which does allow you to see every album with a work by a composer however the albums themselves may be sorted.

Yes, editing tags is annoying, but I don't see how it is more difficult than maintaining accessible space for shelving CDs. And then no matter your sorting scheme, how do you keep track of recordings that aren't in the sort order? Do you keep a cross-index?

 

RE: What!!!, posted on December 3, 2019 at 10:49:27
Posts: 1829
Location: Orange Co., Ca
Joined: September 19, 2001
No, as I recall, this was someone trying to set-up a download trading/re-selling system independent of music vendors. I think the idea was that if you sold a download via his company/system he would verify that you no longer kept a copy for yourself. Anyway, all moot as nothing came of it.

13DoW

 

Understood. Of course........................., posted on December 3, 2019 at 12:52:09
Kal Rubinson
Reviewer

Posts: 11691
Location: New York
Joined: June 5, 2002
he could only "verify" if the user gave him permission to access his system as a condition of "purchase."

 

RE: Giving up on downloads, posted on December 4, 2019 at 07:36:51
AbeCollins
Audiophile

Posts: 36567
Location: USA
Joined: June 22, 2001
Contributor
  Since:
February 2, 2002
Roon:

A robust single cohesive view into your music......

- for metadata and managing your own library of music files

- along with the vast library of music through the Tidal and Qobuz streaming services

My music consists of files that I have ripped from CD over the past decade+, hi-res downloads, and the quality streaming services mentioned above... all managed through the Roon player. The streaming services are not used just for "discovery" as the audio quality is excellent. No need to followup with a disc purchase or download.


 

RE: delete them, posted on February 4, 2020 at 09:26:43
Felixer
Industry Professional

Posts: 34
Joined: August 2, 2010
> delete them

Sounds harsh. It would be nice to find a charity for them.

 

RE: delete them, posted on February 4, 2020 at 10:39:02
DewDude
Audiophile

Posts: 157
Joined: February 13, 2002
There is no legal way to transfer them. Deleting them or not deleting them are the only options.

 

RE: Giving up on downloads, posted on March 30, 2020 at 14:48:33
peterapperup
Audiophile

Posts: 19
Location: Copenhagen
Joined: January 13, 2015
I understand how you feel.
The are so many variables with all those different formats...
but a lot of the newer audiophile recordings are only available as downloads.
I think it is the future so.....

 

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