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Ripping to Flac with Grip
8 October 2007 @ 10:13 BST
by Paul

These days with big hard drives, there is some sense in using the highest possible audio quality when ripping your CDs. The best audio quality is provided by FLAC (Free Lossless Audio Codec).

Previously, I've always used Grip to rip CDs to mp3 or ogg. However, when ripping to Flac I noticed that the meta-data such as track title, album title and so on were disappearing! The data were not being written to the Flac file and therefore were not being displayed by any player, whether Amarok or xmms.

The reason for this is that Flac does not use the same type of tagging system that mp3 files do. Instead Flac files use something called "Vorbis comments" to store the data.

To get the players to display information like 'song title', the Grip configuration options must be changed so that Grip writes these data to the flac file when ripping.

I fixed this by clicking on the 'Config' tab and then on the 'Encode' tab. In the box called 'Encoder command-line', the correct options must be entered.

Grip dialogue box

For me these are:

--best -V -o %m %w -T "ARTIST=%A" -T "TRACKNUMBER=%t" -T "ALBUM=%d" -T "TITLE=%n" -T "GENRE=%G" -T "DATE=%y"

All works fine now!

This still works as of Fedora 14. If you have a large box of CDs to rip, consider turning on rip on insertion, eject when done, and also running this command on your system before you start the whole mess:

hal-disable-polling --device /dev/sr0

Note that you CANNOT say "/dev/cdrom"; you have to use the actual device, not a link, for this to work.

Occasionally, grip still gets into a funky state where the eject fails, the tray retract fails, but it doesn't notice either and just rips the disc over and over again. When that happens, click "abort ripping only", wait for any active encode to finish, quit, and do:

eject (and sometimes these two as well: ) eject -t eject

then restart grip, put your next CD in, and press the eject button IN GRIP to retract the CD.

Bon appetit!

Posted by Matt "breakpoint" Heck on 2011-11-17 23:58:28.
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