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RE: What's a good internet service

If you are limited to downloading then, again, you will find the repertoire available to you limited particularly if you specifically want a particular recording of, say, historic interest or provenance.

There seem to be two types of service for purchasing a download . There is the quick and easy type like Apple and i-tunes or Amazon Music but which are limited to lossy formats like the now outdated MP3 or the more up to date AAC etc. Big pop music catalogues is my impression.

The other type work more like online record shops with a degree of specialist interest e.g HDTracks. Not so straightforward as i-tunes as you may need to install a special download manager or at least be competent in dealing with zipped files and file management on your computer.

Given what I think you are wanting then you sound like a serious record ( or "recording" as I guess we need to say these days) collector. I really think that the only way you will meet your desires is to go for all the options; downloading, ripping from CDs and subscribing to at least one streaming service. I do this as a reasonably serious classical music collector.

If you accept that is a reasonable strategy to find the repertoire that you want then you need a way of storing and playing it.

The players that come as part of your Windows or IOS system have lots of limitations including the formats that they will deal with. Most people on these forums will use proprietory file management/storage/playing software and, often, specialised ripping software as well, some of which will also automatically handle the cover art/metadata side of things. Storage is usually outside of the computer itself using either directly attached storage e.g. USB HDDs or by using network storage (NAS).Whichever is chosen will depend upon your broader requirements, for example could there be more than one user at a time, would you want to access the music files and player in different rooms ( perhaps also at the same time?

Without writing a lengthy response I will just say that as a Windows user I am very happy using JRiver MC file handling/playing software ( you can also rip with it) and dbpoweramp with its Perfect Tunes extension to handle all of the tagging. There are free trial periods available for both so I would suggest downloading them and playing away until you feel comfortable using them. Thereon they are a one off purchase ( not an annual subscription). JRiver handles just about every format, audio and video, known to mankind ( for now :-)).

If you are an Apple person then you will need to rely upon other inmates to help you choose what to do as I know even less about Apple than I do about Windows.

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