I'm in the process of digitalizing my entire CD collection. Since I left behind good ol' cassette tapes for CDs back in the 80s, I've amassed hundreds of discs and kept them in various CD racks to I could easily access whatever I was in the mood for. Some time last week I had an epiphany of sorts. I realized I needed to digitalize my entire collection.
This is no small task. There was much to consider. What format did I want my songs stored in? Where would I store them? What's an acceptable bit rate? What software would I use to rip my CDs? I decided to rip them as MP3s with a bit rate of 128kbps. I'm using Audiograbber and BladeEnc's MP3 DLL to up the bit rate. I've decided not to rip every CD I own, merely the ones I may actually listen to from time to time. When it comes down to that CD with only one song I like, I'm only ripping the one song. I'm storing the MP3s on my home PC's 40GB hard drive until I save up enough to buy a 2nd hard drive of at least 120 GB that will be used for all my multimedia. If I run out of room before then, I'm going to archive my less frequently listened to tunes on CDRs. Once I've got every CD I care about ripped into MP3 and organized nicely on my new hard drive, I will be finished. With my entire collection digitalized, I can grab what I want for whatever purpose. I envision one day owning a portable MP3 player and even an MP3 player in my car. Until then, it's simple to create an audio CD with the songs I want. As I've written before, the compact disc as a medium is quickly becoming obsolete.
I've been ripping steadily for a few days now and I've only scratched the surface. It's going to be weeks before I'm finished this phase of the project. I've already taken all the CDs off the CD racks in the living room and moved them to the basement. When I'm complete, they will be stored away some place in case I ever require the source material again.
I should have done this long ago. The freedom this gives me is rather liberating. Hey, I want to hear Liberate from Disturbed. It's only a click away...