Help with creating a music server

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Billy Posey, Aug 23, 2005.

  1. Billy Posey

    Billy Posey Second Unit

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    Here is my situation. My Pioneer 300 disc player is dying and just when it's about time to buy another it looks like I will need to buy two changers. Well that got me to thinking about copying my nearly 300 cds to a hardrive and connecting the computer to my a/v receiver. Now I've been reading on this forum( nearly 8 hours yesturday when I was supposed to be doing some late summer spring cleaning) and others forums to get some ideas. I even talked on Stephen Phillips on this forum. I find myself, however, still not sure of how to do this.

    I'll explain what I hope to do exactly. I want to copy all my cds to the hardrive without compression. I don't want to use the inferior sounding mp3 format. That's all I want to do. Not interested in building a entire media server including video and what not. I'm not sure how big of a hardrive I will need for my cd's and future growth. The researching I have done has made me concerned about connecting hardrives. While I'm know dummy and I have connected and replaced ide hardrives, and even though I'm studying to be Cisco Certified, I wouldn't call myself computer saavy. It's looks like if I do something with 200 gb or larger, I need to do something with raid or what ever and I don't know what that is. I have two computers now but I was thinking of buying an older pentium 3 off ebay,I saw several for about 50.00 dollars, and hopefully putting a large drive in there. As for the connection to the stereo Sthephen suggested the Chaintech soundcard. I was also doing some research on the audiotron. I want it to be simple as possible. The computer will be relatively close and my home network is all wired. I just want to be able to put the cds in the drive and ripped to a hardrive use a program to make playist and start playing when I want to listen.

    I have another option if trying to rip cds at bit perfect form becomes to complicated. I could just rip the cd's using the highest quality codec, which ever that is and buy a high quality single disc cd player for when I really want to listen to high quality sound. That's what I'll do when I listen to my Sacd dics and Dvd-a disc anyway right.

    So hopefully you knowledgable people can lend me a hand and point me into the right direction.


    P.S. Can you put three hardrives on a computer. For example and you put two hardrives on one ide cable(you know master and slave) and a Cd-rom and Hardrive on another cable (master and slave). I have two computers one gateway 2ghz 256 ram and another computer(938mhz 128 mb ram) that pretty funky acting. I was messing around trying to put windows xp and a additonal hardrive (a 30 gb) the original is a 4 gb, and somehow I made it that so that the computer boots up the os only if the two are connected. I use it so the kids can play on the internet when the wife or I are on the main one.
     
  2. Phil A

    Phil A Producer

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    Not the PC type but keep in mind there has just been announced the following product when doing your stuff:

    "
    Aug 23, 2005 04:07

    Any Music, Any Format: Logitech Brings PC Music Anywhere in the Home Without Wires; Logitech Wireless Music System for PC Includes Everything Needed to Easily Stream Digital Music to Stereo System or Speakers

    FREMONT, Calif. --(Business Wire)-- Aug. 23, 2005 Experiencing digital music just got easier. Logitech (SWX:LOGN) (Nasdaq:LOGI) today introduced the Logitech(R) Wireless Music System for PC, which can stream any format of digital audio from the PC to a home stereo system or to a separate speaker system. No wireless network is needed; everything required is in the box.
    The Logitech Wireless Music System for PC is a simple, three-piece solution: a USB music transmitter that connects to the PC; a music receiver that plugs into a home stereo receiver or multimedia speakers through a standard RCA port or a 3.5 mm jack; and a wireless remote control. In a matter of minutes, people can enjoy all of their PC audio, including their entire digital music collection, MP3 subscription service, and Internet radio, in virtually any room in the home.

    "The digital music revolution has given people new flexibility in how they purchase and organize their digital music -- but for most people, that music is held captive on a PC," said Ray Weikel, director of product marketing for Logitech's Audio Business Unit. "With the Wireless Music System for PC, people can enjoy their favorite playlists or Internet radio on their living room entertainment system. The product takes less than five minutes to set up, and it works without any cables or adapters, without a Wi-Fi network, and without any restrictions on file format."

    The Logitech Wireless Music System for PC is targeted at the growing number of people who are buying digital music tracks and subscription services through online music stores such as Apple's iTunes(R) or Musicmatch(R). A recent study by Parks Associates showed that two-thirds of online U.S. households listen to music on a home computer. And whether they use a portable player or not, most people don't have a good way to get their online music from the PC to their entertainment center.

    The simplicity of the Logitech Wireless Music System for PC is due to the architecture of the Logitech(R) Music Anywhere(TM) wireless technology. The transmitter and receiver are paired at manufacturing, ensuring they will instantly connect when plugged in. The proprietary technology provides crystal-clear digital audio quality and features adaptive frequency hopping, helping the product overcome any potential wireless interference. The USB-based PC music transmitter sends audio streams directly to the music receiver at a range of up to 100 meters (330 feet). The Logitech Wireless Music System for PC also includes software that allows people to easily switch back and forth between listening to music on the PC and wirelessly streaming it to another room.

    The system's infrared remote allows people to control their music files from their living room couch, even though the files reside on the PC in another room. About the size of a credit card, the remote features controls such as volume up or down, mute, play, pause, skip forward and back. The remote works with today's most popular media players, including iTunes(R), Windows(R) Media Player, Musicmatch(R), WinAmp(R), and RealPlayer(R) -- there's no need to install a new player.

    Logitech Music Anywhere Wireless Technology

    The Logitech Wireless Music System for PC is just one of Logitech's new products featuring Logitech Music Anywhere wireless technology. Today, the company also announced the Logitech(R) Wireless Music System for iPod(R), an easy-to-use product for people to wirelessly connect their iPod or MP3 player to their stereo system, and the Logitech(R) Wireless Headphones for PC, designed for people who want to wirelessly listen to their PC audio as they roam around the house. The company also sells the Logitech(R) Wireless Headphones for iPod(R) and the Logitech(R) Wireless Headphones for MP3, giving owners the ability to listen to their music player with no strings attached. Logitech's Music Anywhere technology is designed to provide digital music enthusiasts the freedom to enjoy their music listening experience in more places and in more ways, without any setup hassles or headaches.

    Pricing and Availability

    The Logitech Wireless Music System for PC will be available in stores and online beginning in September in the U.S. and in Europe. Its suggested retail price in the U.S. is $149.99. Logitech will make additional receivers available for people who want to stream their music to multiple rooms in the house. The additional receivers will be available online at http://www.logitech.com, for $79.99 (U.S.).

    About Logitech

    Founded in 1981, Logitech designs, manufactures and markets personal peripherals that enable people to effectively work, play, and communicate in the digital world. Logitech International is a Swiss public company traded on the SWX Swiss Exchange (LOGN) and in the U.S. on the Nasdaq National Market System (LOGI). The company has manufacturing facilities in Asia and offices in major cities in North America, Europe and Asia Pacific.

    Logitech, the Logitech logo, and other Logitech marks are owned by Logitech and may be registered. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

    Logitech
    Pamela McCracken, 510-713-4003
    [email protected]
     
  3. BlakeN

    BlakeN Stunt Coordinator

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    You can put way more then 3 hard drives in a pc IF you have the proper hardware. Seven is quite easy to do with a secondary controller card and a large power supply.

    You want to look into lossless audio codecs the most popular are Monkey's Audio http://www.monkeysaudio.com/FLAC http://flac.sourceforge.net/ and Ogg Vorbis http://www.vorbis.com/. Many home music centers/media servers are starting to support these codecs. A cd is going to take up 380-250mb per disk. About 50% less space then cda. The difference between a lossless codec and mp3 is this: Mp3 shrinks files by removing audio above and below a certain frequency. The frequency depends on what bit rate you are re-encoding to. Lossless shrinks files using file compression like zip files or rar. All the data is still there it has just done pattern recognition to save space. The down side is lossless takes up more space then mp3 but the huge advantage is it saves all the data.

    I hope that helps.

    Btw if you have say 400 cds at 350mb each on average thats only 140gigs. Buy 2 200gig drives and your set for a long long time.
     
  4. MikeSelis

    MikeSelis Auditioning

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    It is my suggestion that you if you are looking at taking an older system that you add two SATA hard drives to the system and a raid card. You can have them setup mirrored which means that after you get the cd music into whatever file format you want, the system copies them over to both hard drives. If one hard drive fails, you still have the data on the other and can copy it to a second drive and be back to normal. It is my understanding that in this configuration, the computer system only reads from one of the drives, but saves data to both drives at the same time.

    My suggestion behind SATA is that it has a faster transfer rate, which means you will be able to move the data faster, plus with SATA drives you will be in better shape to move the drives to another computer in the future. For playback, you may find that increased RAM, 256MB or more may improve playback quality.

    You can find a SATA raid card for less than $60, and SATA drives 250GB for less than $200 each.
     
  5. FeisalK

    FeisalK Screenwriter

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  6. Billy Posey

    Billy Posey Second Unit

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    Thanks for the help. How do I know if my bios will support a drive larger than 137? While serching the internet I came across a hard drive that connects as a network device. Can that be a possibility or one that connects via usb?
     
  7. FeisalK

    FeisalK Screenwriter

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    USB drives are cheaper than network storage, but have less capacity generally
     
  8. MikeSelis

    MikeSelis Auditioning

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    You could buy network drives, but they will be more expensive than usb or firewire drives. Keep in mind, if you use network drives, other network traffic can interfere with getting your music to the system for playback. I have seen Iomega and Lacie network drives in the area of 500GB and more, but they are very expensive, and it would be cheaper to simply add a few hard drives to a low end system.

    If you really wanted to just have a bunch of storage space, you could build a system with a Celeron or Sempron processor, 256MB ram, and a few hard drives. Most any current motherboard will recognize the largest hard drives including 400GB. If you look a little you could build a basic storage system for $250-300 without hard drives.
     
  9. FeisalK

    FeisalK Screenwriter

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    sorry ... what's a storage system without hard drives?

    do you mean without external USB / Firewire / network drives
     
  10. MikeSelis

    MikeSelis Auditioning

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    What I meant was that you could build a basic storage system (meaning processor, motherboard with onboard video network and audio, ram, power supply, case, and a cd-rom) for about $250-300. You would need to add a hard drive to the system, but the cost of this would be variable based on what size you need. The cost of the operating system would come into play, since I cannot make assumptions if you want to use Windows Home, Media Center, or Professional, or Linux.
     
  11. FeisalK

    FeisalK Screenwriter

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    ah.. OK thanks for clearing that [​IMG]
     
  12. Eric D

    Eric D Auditioning

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    So basically a basic system from Dell with the following and adding a 200+ GB harddrive would do the trick.

    Microsoft Windows XP Home
    Memory: 256 MB DDR NON-ECC SDRAM 400MHz (2 DIMMs)
    Floppy Drive: No Floppy Drive
    Hard Disk Drive: 80 GB EIDE Hard Drive (7200 RPM)
    Modem: 56Kbps Data/Fax Modem
    CD Read-Write Drive: 48X CD RW Drive
    Windows Media Player
     
  13. JoanPablo_T

    JoanPablo_T Stunt Coordinator

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    ever thought of a MusicCast? Straight PCM encoding and the ability to upgrade to a larger harddrive if you like. I love mine, I can make playlists for any occasion or mood.
     

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