Thursday, June 19, 2008

Bonk enc #1: a very good (shell) program for ripping your CDs ...

.........and reconverting your MP3s  into another forrmat ........... A REVIEW


The program has been found i think in the freewaregenius web site (together with mediacoder , toibe reviewed later here ) several months ago, bvased on a very short review, which normally acts as a shell program for several freeware /open source audio codecs.

The program can be found  in the adress http://www.bonkenc.org  and includes  the latest two versions  , together  with two extra plug ins. The most curent is 107

ONce you download the  program the screening is shown as below:





The program has the following  specifications:
- is totally free and comes with its  source
- it can be just unzipped into a folder and  work . Thefore it is a green program
- There are various language translations including a program that handles translation fields
- Connectivity with  CDDB  for automatic  album naming (if avaialble )
- automatic ripping after a CD is inserted  and  recognized (setable)
The latest colleciton i  converted  has been  totally found from the CDDB databqase
- about 5  conversion systems
 FLAC, Blade , Lame ,Ogg, AAC and its own Bonk
- auto titling  based on the information of the artist and title given , including the ID3 info saved
- mass ID3 saving
- CD /file operations:  playback and insert/escape button shown below the web adress
- also facility  to manually update - via the help menu
- plug ins  for in- and out-put

a very interesting point is that the program allows  you not only to add the ID tags (ID 1 and 2 )  but also
- set the case letters  towards: each  word in lower or in upper cases ,
- set the tag for all the songs  included in ripping
- set a spscial  label for the music kind
Here are several  screenshots from its settings: here is just the  encoders settings. As you may see  there is also a filename naming pattern





And another settings view  for playlists . There is the ability to use cue sheets



And here you will find some screeshots  for the  encoding abilities . As  you may see  Fraunhofer FhG and WMA  codec are  missing . I think this is because FhG  codec is commercial .....WAVE OUT as show in the picture comes fromta export plugin .Blade enc is a optional codec  that can be found in the program's site  that has several peculiar conversion specs .All codecs here are  freeeware modules.




In the next pages you will find in depth (as posible ) reports on the codecs  and their operations  includeing more pictures



Here  are several imprtant notice from my usage  for about 2 months



The ID3 tags : upon the preset format , they can be shown OK to Wianamp, Windows explorer and sevreal ID tagging programs but in seeral others not . the proble consisted onthe UTF 16LE . Setting to ISO encoding  the porblem  has been solved


Cons  I found two types of crashes:
- The program crashed when resizing the time Bonk was converting
- several dragged /dropped MP3s also made it crash. I donot know  what  is the problem with these MP3 files . But dropping  their  directories into Bonkencs'  file window there was not problem



In the next pages   you will see a description of the  encoding schemes
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The blade enc adjustments:(a very  easy and simple encoder )


 

The lame encoder - which is trhe most complex encoding system.



The lame encoder  has too many parameters to use . the most important for me is the quality item that can cnvert from  just  4 secs for the worst quality to 25 secs  for the better quality. IN this paramter  i prever to use the highest possible number - usually 3 and 2 -  inorder to have the best  audio quality - though mine ears  do not  find any  significant diference . In the second part i will  show you several intereting experiments with them

Here is a  screenshot for FAAC , surely a form of AAC ,an open source MPEG-4 and MPEG-2 AAC encoder of lesser general public license  :



and here  which shows the encoder configuration with both kinds of versions




and here for ogg vorbis : note averager instad of constant bitrate is used





and here is for FLAC (a free lossless audio codec )  with also very great amount of adjustments:



with expert  encoider configuration as here:







In the next posting I will  place several measurements  on some if the above codecs

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