removing "track gap" from audio burns

Micah CohenMicah Cohen Ruler of the gnome universePosts: 2,020
Micah's back! And he has a question for anyone here who downloads music (torrents) and burns them to CD. Ignore for a moment the ethics of this, and please tell me why I'm experiencing "track gaps."

For example, think about these tracks: the "Space Intro" and "Fly Like An Eagle," and the lead-in to "Jet Airliner" both from Steve Miller… And the three-track combination of "Double Life," "Shoo-Be-Doo" and "Candy-O" from The Cars' second album. These are sets of tracks that have absolutely no gaps between them.

But on my burned CDs, I can't remove the tiny drop-out that happens between each MP3 file.

This is not a 5-second gap. And it's not a 2-second "skipping" type gap. What appears on these burned CDs is just a teeny tiny hiccup, a split-second audio drop-out, between these connected tracks.

Needless to say, this teeny tiny audio drop-out is driving me absolutely out of my mind. I have experienced it on burns of "live albums," where audience sound is supposed to connect tracks. In the audience sound, there is the tiny drop-out, and then the next track begins. There should be no gap whatsoever.

I'm burning CDs using both WinMediaPlayer (bad) and CDBurnerXP (better). Both programs have "no gaps" settings, but that setting does not affect this tiny drop-out.

Why am I getting this tiny gap? Is this something that everyone experiences when they download songs and burn them to CD? What can I do to remove the gap and seal the transition between those three Cars songs? Should I be using a different burn software?

Thanks for any info on this. If I have posted this in the wrong forum, please let me know.

Micah
[email protected]

"There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney

Comments

  • F1nutF1nut Posts: 44,944
    That's because you're listening to that hippie dippie music. :p



















    Ok so, the only thing I can tell you that gap seems to be common with MP3's. No idea how you'd get rid of it.
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  • tonybtonyb Posts: 32,479
    Try burning in lossless and see if you get the same results. I wouldn't use windows media player for anything though. I've burned cd's using ITunes with lossless and never experienced any drops.
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  • D'privedD'prived Posts: 191
    edited April 2016
    If you are using ripping software such as EAC you can select "Space Intro" and "Fly Like An Eagle" and tell it to rip as one track.

    If you have an audio editing software program (such as Adobe Audition) you can copy and paste both wav, mp3, flac, etc files into the program and save as one file.

    When using MP3's the player sees the MP3's as individual files and plays them as such. The player has no idea that one track should lead in to another. When the track is ripped and converted to MP3 all of that type info is thrown away.

    Not sure about MP3's but I do know when playing .flac or .wav files you have to have a player that supports gapless playback. If you don't then you will get gaps in between the individual tracks. When trying to listen to Pink Floyd's DSOTM the gaps are quite annoying.
  • Micah CohenMicah Cohen Ruler of the gnome universe Posts: 2,020
    Ah, so, it's a function of MP3s then. Burners and players see them as separate things, so there's really no "connecting" them. Thanks for that tidbit.

    This is super-annoying. DSOTM would be unlistenable. So you understand my general complaint.

    I am not in the mood to download FLAC files. There's just too much work involved. (This is all for casual listening, road-trip car listening. Anything "serious" like DSOTM I'd just buy the CD.)

    Is EAC the software "Exact Audio Copy"? I should look into that, right? Use that to burn my CDs?

    Micah


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    "There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney
  • steveinazsteveinaz Posts: 19,464
    Might be player driven problem. My Oppo BDP-103 has a "gapless" selection you can pick from the playback menu for albums that run seemlessly from song to song. This is using flac files.
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  • D'privedD'prived Posts: 191
    steveinaz wrote: »
    Might be player driven problem. My Oppo BDP-103 has a "gapless" selection you can pick from the playback menu for albums that run seemlessly from song to song. This is using flac files.

    Gapless playback is the key. When I first started streaming my tunes about 3 years ago I had an Onkyo TX-N809 which didn't support gapless playback. Trying to listen to DSOTM or a "live" album was impossible. That's when I started looking in to what caused the gaps to be there. I ended up buying a Yamaha network streamer that supported gapless playback and all was right in my music world again.

    Just to be clear... I am speaking strictly from a .FLAC standpoint. I don't stream MP3's so I don't know if it would work the same way.
  • D'privedD'prived Posts: 191
    Ah, so, it's a function of MP3s then. Burners and players see them as separate things, so there's really no "connecting" them. Thanks for that tidbit.

    This is super-annoying. DSOTM would be unlistenable. So you understand my general complaint.

    I am not in the mood to download FLAC files. There's just too much work involved. (This is all for casual listening, road-trip car listening. Anything "serious" like DSOTM I'd just buy the CD.)

    Is EAC the software "Exact Audio Copy"? I should look into that, right? Use that to burn my CDs?

    Micah


    Yep... Exact Audio Copy. It's been a while since I used it but I don't think it's going to be helpful when burning the CD. If you have the physical CD then you would tell EAC to combine the two tracks and rip as one then convert to MP3. Or in the case of DSOTM you would select the whole CD and rip all the tracks as one track. So then you would probably have one 20meg MP3 which would contain the whole album.

    If you download the MP3's then the only way I know to get around the gaps is to import the two tracks in to an audio editing software and then save as one track. Keep in mind tho every time you manipulate and re-save an MP3 you will lose some sound quality.

    Google "audio editing software." Here's a free one

    http://www.nch.com.au/wavepad/index.html?gclid=CjwKEAjwlq24BRDMjdK7g8mD6BASJABBl8n36zw-NLln1fDTtm5RSe1uT07wFfT-ek5iaaH1ERV9lhoC5_7w_wcB
  • Micah CohenMicah Cohen Ruler of the gnome universe Posts: 2,020
    How do you lose sound quality when copying a digital file? It's not like making a tape-dup or new print from a negative. Is it?

    Micah


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    "There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney
  • Micah CohenMicah Cohen Ruler of the gnome universe Posts: 2,020
    I looked at that WavePad audio editing software. That looks awesome. I guess I could use that to "edit out" the tiny MP3 track-gaps.

    Then I think... Man, this is a lot of effort I'm putting in for an MP3 download of an old Bob Seger live album that I'll listen to once on a long road trip and then probably not need again. It would be tops to have the album seamless with no track-gaps, but all this work... why not just buy the album if I need it so badly?

    QUESTION: Does downloading FLAC format files, and then converting them to CD-player compatible formats (wav, MP3) using (say) CDBurnerXP give you more options in terms of combining tracks, or does it just render the FLAC into an MP3 and you're stuck with the track-gap?

    Thanks for all this info!

    Micah


    [email protected]

    "There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney
  • D'privedD'prived Posts: 191
    How do you lose sound quality when copying a digital file? It's not like making a tape-dup or new print from a negative. Is it?

    Micah


    What Makes an Audio Format Lossy?

    The word lossy is used in digital audio to describe the type of compression used to store sound data. The algorithm used in a lossy audio format compresses sound data in a way that discards some information. This means that the encoded audio isn't identical to the original.

    http://mp3.about.com/od/glossary/g/Lossy_def.htm
  • D'privedD'prived Posts: 191
    I looked at that WavePad audio editing software. That looks awesome. I guess I could use that to "edit out" the tiny MP3 track-gaps.

    Then I think... Man, this is a lot of effort I'm putting in for an MP3 download of an old Bob Seger live album that I'll listen to once on a long road trip and then probably not need again. It would be tops to have the album seamless with no track-gaps, but all this work... why not just buy the album if I need it so badly?

    QUESTION: Does downloading FLAC format files, and then converting them to CD-player compatible formats (wav, MP3) using (say) CDBurnerXP give you more options in terms of combining tracks, or does it just render the FLAC into an MP3 and you're stuck with the track-gap?

    Thanks for all this info!

    Micah


    I believe your best bet would be to download the .FLAC, covert it to .WAV and then burn the .WAV to a CD. That should retain the original format of the CD and play as the original CD. Anytime you convert to MP3 you lose that info.
  • tonybtonyb Posts: 32,479
    which circles back to....why are you burning MP3's to cd again ? lol

    Any lossless file, apple lossless, flac, Wav, when burned to a cd will play in the car.
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  • footwedgefootwedge Posts: 475
    Help me understand the want or reason for gap less playback. Any cd or album always has a dead period before playing the next track. What am I missing?

  • lightman1lightman1 Posts: 10,709
    footwedge wrote: »
    Help me understand the want or reason for gap less playback. Any cd or album always has a dead period before playing the next track. What am I missing?

    Some recordings have a blend between given tracks. Background chatter, guitar fade that goes into the next song. Like the Pink Floyd Dark Side of the Moon album example above. No loss in sound but the CD track goes from one to two.
    The MP3 sets do not recognize that flow from Track 1 to Track 2 in the files order, so it ends Track 1 to cue up Track 2. Thus the nerve wracking, fury inducing hissy fit that Micah is having.
  • NightfallNightfall Posts: 9,197
    footwedge wrote: »
    Help me understand the want or reason for gap less playback. Any cd or album always has a dead period before playing the next track. What am I missing?

    You've never listened to a live album?
    afterburnt wrote: »
    They didn't speak a word of English, they were from South Carolina.

    Village Idiot of Club Polk
  • footwedgefootwedge Posts: 475
    Nightfall wrote: »
    footwedge wrote: »
    Help me understand the want or reason for gap less playback. Any cd or album always has a dead period before playing the next track. What am I missing?

    You've never listened to a live album?

    Not since the early 80's and was probably in a condition that would not allow this discernment. Even my current live CDs have a slight pause or maybe I need to pay more attention. It's not like the music never stops before the beginning of the next track.

    Disclaimer: when I rip my first cd it will be my first.



  • Micah CohenMicah Cohen Ruler of the gnome universe Posts: 2,020
    Y'all are cracking me up. As it should be.

    I'm burning MP3s because they are easy-peasy for grab-and-go on-the-road listening. I'm rediscovering stuff without having to buy it. (Yet. Eh-hem.)

    I think that if I get really attached to something, I might decide to download it in FLAC and convert it to a playable format retaining the gapless flow of the tracks that demand it. (That is, if I downloaded DSOTM, I'd do it in FLAC and keep the flow of the connected tracks.)

    It's very annoying that you can't just get the flow with MP3s. I thought technology made things easier.

    That said, CDBurnerXP continues to be the best, easiest burner for me.

    Micah





    [email protected]

    "There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney
  • NightfallNightfall Posts: 9,197
    I believe the difference lies in whether you are burning the MP3's as files to a CD or are converting them into a regular CD. If you're burning the files themselves the gapless playback is determined by the playback device not the CD. If you're converting the MP3's into a "regular" CD (i.e. 74 minutes on a CD, not hundreds of files on a CD) then gapless playback is determined with the burning software used.
    afterburnt wrote: »
    They didn't speak a word of English, they were from South Carolina.

    Village Idiot of Club Polk
  • NightfallNightfall Posts: 9,197
    afterburnt wrote: »
    They didn't speak a word of English, they were from South Carolina.

    Village Idiot of Club Polk
  • tonybtonyb Posts: 32,479
    Y'all are cracking me up. As it should be.

    I'm burning MP3s because they are easy-peasy for grab-and-go on-the-road listening. I'm rediscovering stuff without having to buy it. (Yet. Eh-hem.)

    Micah

    Not quite following ya Micah, easy-peasy.....it's a click of the mouse to burn in lossless to cd, take the cd and run to the car. Any easier and you probably need someone else to do it for you. :)

    ....or are you finding MP3's on other sites to download ?
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  • Micah CohenMicah Cohen Ruler of the gnome universe Posts: 2,020
    It's a data streaming issue in the MP3 decoder software of the playback device.


    OK, this makes some sense. The CD player in my car is from 2003. The CD player in my office, maybe a little older. Both players reveal the tiny MP3 track-gap hiccup.

    The new CD player in my living room, tho, it also reveals the tiny MP3 track-gap hiccup. The hiccup is much less pronounced, maybe, but it's still clearly there. So, could new decoding software (assuming the new CD player has new software in it) still be at fault here?

    Or, am I just beating my head against a technology wall? Maybe MP3s, no matter what, will never play "gapless" even when the songs run together, like the three run-together songs from The Cars I mentioned at the beginning.

    And sure, I guess it's just as easy to download some FLAC files and let CDBurnerXP do the tricks to burn them to a playable format on CD, but I have just been figuring MP3s are small and download quickly, and... Ya know: EASY.

    Last time I dealt with FLAC, there was a monkey audio thing and cue file and a conversion process and who in the heck knew what I was doing? It just wasn't AS EASY and QUICK as MP3 downloads. That's all I'm thinking.

    But if MP3s end up upsetting me with this track-gap, then I'll have to change my priorities.

    Why isn't technology EASY? Press a button and your refrigerator tells you if you have enough milk, but I can't delete the tiny track-gap between flow-together MP3s? That's just not fair.

    Micah
    [email protected]

    "There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney
  • billbillwbillbillw Posts: 5,851
    edited April 2016
    I don't really think it is purely an MP3 thing. I have CDs that came from MP3 and they don't have breaks.


    BTW, those who think all albums have breaks between the songs doesn't listen to much variety. Many electronic artists have continuous flow albums, so do progressive rock, alternative rock, jazz, and many others.

    A lot depends on who/how the file was originally sourced. If it was ripped by a good software like EAC, and then converted into MP3, then it might not have the gaps.

    Also, when you burn it, there are settings that need to be looked at. I mostly use Nero to burn audio CDs and they have an automatic 2-second gap that you have to take out. Also, check settings to be sure you burn "disc at once" and NOT 'track at once."

    I'm not sure where you are getting your files from, but the best stuff to download is the Lossless files that come with a CUE sheet and an EAC log. You can typically count on those to match up to the original album. If you use EAC to burn it, then it will typically be a perfect match to the original. Of course, with EAC, I always seem to have to tweek the cue sheet to make it work. File names have to match perfect and it has to be converted back into WAV before burning.

    The more you deal with these things, the easier they get and eventually it is 'easy'.
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  • Micah CohenMicah Cohen Ruler of the gnome universe Posts: 2,020
    I'm not sure where you are getting your files from

    Shiver me timbers and yo-ho-ho, but I'm sure it's pretty evident. I usually pull down albums and sometimes burn them whole or make "compilations" of MP3s. I'm sure the bothersome track-gaps are the result of where and how and what I'm downloading, if not the decoder. Or some combination of all this.

    I will recheck settings on my burning software. Not sure if CDBurnerXP offers "DAO" vs "TAO" settings, and I'm sure I've clicked off any kind of gap or pause setting.

    Maybe FLAC is the way to go, if this really concerns me. I'll try it.

    Micah





    [email protected]

    "There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney
  • Micah CohenMicah Cohen Ruler of the gnome universe Posts: 2,020
    SOLVED.

    So, I downloaded FLAC files, allowed CDburnerXP to convert them to WAV files, and burned them to CD. (You simply "add" the FLAC "cue" file, and CDBurnerXP unpacks the files in WAV format from the associated FLAC file.)

    This successfully ELIMINATED the tiny annoying MP3 track-gap hiccup, and the three songs on "Candy-O" that flow into one another ("Double Life," "Shoo-be-doo" and then "Candy-O") all flow seamlessly into one another like they always should.

    Bonus: Better sound quality.

    The lesson learned here is, if you're going to download "Dark Side of The Moon" (or some other all-tracks-flow-together album) do it in FLAC format, not MP3, so to avoid the tiny annoying MP3 track-gap hiccup that is a part of the MP3 decoding process.

    Thanks for everyone's help here, I really appreciate it.

    Happy gap-less listening!

    Micah

    [email protected]

    "There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney
  • billbillwbillbillw Posts: 5,851
    I'm not sure where you are getting your files from

    Shiver me timbers and yo-ho-ho, but I'm sure it's pretty evident. I usually pull down albums and sometimes burn them whole or make "compilations" of MP3s. I'm sure the bothersome track-gaps are the result of where and how and what I'm downloading, if not the decoder. Or some combination of all this.

    I will recheck settings on my burning software. Not sure if CDBurnerXP offers "DAO" vs "TAO" settings, and I'm sure I've clicked off any kind of gap or pause setting.

    Maybe FLAC is the way to go, if this really concerns me. I'll try it.

    Micah

    I know its from some source on the internet, but there are probably dozens of places. What I meant was some sources like Waffles.fm or What.cd offer much better quality. They have minimum quality requirements for uploads. Waffles (which I am a member to) has something they called a Waffle Iron seal on an upload that means it is the best quality and meets all the requirements. It is always in a lossless format and has a cue sheet.
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  • Micah CohenMicah Cohen Ruler of the gnome universe Posts: 2,020
    Costs money, tho, probably. Arg, matey, you know how we feel about about that.

    If I want the real thing, I'll buy it.

    Otherwise... run up the black flag!

    upuesslda71k.png

    Micah
    [email protected]

    "There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney
  • billbillwbillbillw Posts: 5,851
    edited April 2016
    Costs money, tho, probably. Arg, matey, you know how we feel about about that.

    If I want the real thing, I'll buy it.

    Otherwise... run up the black flag!

    upuesslda71k.png

    Micah

    No money, just invitation only.

    I'm guessing you are using the Piratebay. I use that site once in awhile, but mostly I try to avoid it due to low quality and potential malware. Also, your ISP will get nasty with you if they see you torrenting certain files from there. It will start with warnings, but if you keep it up, they'll shut you down totally.

    If you want to get stuff there, I suggest using a proxy service like Private Internet Access. ($40/year). Its money well spent IMO.
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  • tonybtonyb Posts: 32,479
    Who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks. lol Glad you got it worked out. Lesson learned should be when burning to cd, there is no reason to use MP3's. :)
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