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Thread: Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

  1. #1

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    Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

    I currently have over 2800 CD's ripped in Windows Media Lossless. The CD's were ripped in Windows Media Player. I want to convert them to Flac while preserving metadata and album artwork. I tried to do a test of one ripped CD, but was unable to get album info/artwork to transfer. I've downloaded the ID-TAG-UPDATE CODEC.

    Also, some of the albums in my library are downloads that are already encoded in FLAC. How do I get Batch Converter to skip these? It would be a PITA to have to go through the entire library to find the FLAC aldums.

    Thanks,

  2. #2
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    Re: Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

    Right click on a WMA file >> Edit ID Tags

    does it show the ID Tags + album art?

  3. #3

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    Re: Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

    Quote Originally Posted by Spoon View Post
    Right click on a WMA file >> Edit ID Tags

    does it show the ID Tags + album art?
    It shows the ID Tags but no album art. I suspect the album art is kept in a separate file. Even though there's only 11 tracks in the test album, Windows File Explorer reports that there are 17 files in the directory. For the life of me, I can not get those hidden files to display.

  4. #4

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    Re: Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

    BTW - When I play back the WMA Lossless files in Foobar 2000, I see the album info and the artwork.

    My motivation for the batch conversion is that I have Sonos, Squeezeboxes and Play-fi devices that all support FLAC natively. Only the Squeezebox supports transcoding. I would love to be able to play all my music through all the devices.

  5. #5
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    Re: Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

    You have to enable the showing of hidden and system files to view the hidden art.

  6. #6
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    Re: Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

    Quote Originally Posted by prpixel View Post
    Also, some of the albums in my library are downloads that are already encoded in FLAC. How do I get Batch Converter to skip these? It would be a PITA to have to go through the entire library to find the FLAC aldums.
    You can use the Filter in Batch Converter to select for the file type (codec) you want.

    Quote Originally Posted by prpixel View Post
    It shows the ID Tags but no album art. I suspect the album art is kept in a separate file. Even though there's only 11 tracks in the test album, Windows File Explorer reports that there are 17 files in the directory. For the life of me, I can not get those hidden files to display.
    Windows Media Player is a very intrusive program....depending on its settings, it can change metadata and really mess up your library. I'd strongly suggest you completely disable or uninstall it before trying to work with your music files.

    Once you're sure that your files are clear of any association with WMP, go into Windows Explorer and use the Folder Options to allow it to show hidden and system files. Look in some album folders...are there any separate image files? When you right-click on a file and select Edit ID Tags, do you see the album art now? If the artwork is there in the album folders, you'll just need to make sure that you set dBp to keep it when you convert. If it's not there, the artwork is likely stored in a local AppData cache on your C: drive. This is how WMP generally works when it's set to retrieve art online. (One of the many reasons you should banish that program from your system...)

    Unfortunately, I don't know of a way to easily move all those images from the cache to their associated folders (There may be some way to do it....I've just never had to do it myself.) dBp can't go find artwork elsewhere on your computer and "repatriate" it, as far as I know. Perhaps foobar, which is apparently accessing the cache (or has created its own...), has an option to save the album art to the album folder....or better yet, to embed it in the files themselves.

    So without going any further, what have you determined about the art? After changing folder view options, did you find it in the album folders? Or do you think it's buried away in the AppData cache?

  7. #7

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    Re: Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

    I've already turned on view hidden files under Control Panel->Folder Options->View. This doesn't show the hidden files in each directory. There seams to be 6 hidden files in each Album directory. When I right click on an audio file and select "edit Tags" I can see the track/album information but no album art. I suspect that the album art is in a separate jpeg file. I played around a little last night and turned on "Folder.Jpeg Preserve" and that did copy over the artwork on my test album.


    As far as Filtering is concerned: if I do a batch convert, selecting only WMA files, tell it to preserve the directory structure on a different drive and delete each folder after processing, it should convert and move all my files to an external drive, correct? I have some FLAC and a ew MP3's that should be left behind. Then I could just merge the two directories and be done.

    Thanks for all the help,

  8. #8
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    Re: Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

    Quote Originally Posted by prpixel View Post
    I've already turned on view hidden files under Control Panel->Folder Options->View. This doesn't show the hidden files in each directory. There seams to be 6 hidden files in each Album directory. When I right click on an audio file and select "edit Tags" I can see the track/album information but no album art. I suspect that the album art is in a separate jpeg file. I played around a little last night and turned on "Folder.Jpeg Preserve" and that did copy over the artwork on my test album.
    Cool...sounds like that issue's resolved. WMP keeps several different-sized copies of the cover art, if I recall correctly. That may explain why there are so many hidden files. They are still hidden, incidentally, because you also have to enable viewing of hidden system files (in Folder Options).

    As far as Filtering is concerned: if I do a batch convert, selecting only WMA files, tell it to preserve the directory structure on a different drive and delete each folder after processing, it should convert and move all my files to an external drive, correct? I have some FLAC and a ew MP3's that should be left behind. Then I could just merge the two directories and be done.

    Thanks for all the help,
    Yeah, that should work. Be careful when automatically deleting source files...thoroughly test your ripping protocol on a small batch or two to make sure everything is working as expected. But once you're confident in your setup, dBp should make quick work of converting and relocating all those files.

  9. #9
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    Re: Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

    Quote Originally Posted by prpixel View Post
    As far as Filtering is concerned: if I do a batch convert, selecting only WMA files, tell it to preserve the directory structure on a different drive and delete each folder after processing, it should convert and move all my files to an external drive, correct? I have some FLAC and a ew MP3's that should be left behind. Then I could just merge the two directories and be done.
    I would also backup the WMA files, before proceeding.

  10. #10

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    Re: Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

    Quote Originally Posted by BrodyBoy View Post
    Cool...sounds like that issue's resolved. WMP keeps several different-sized copies of the cover art, if I recall correctly. That may explain why there are so many hidden files. They are still hidden, incidentally, because you also have to enable viewing of hidden system files (in Folder Options).


    Quote Originally Posted by BrodyBoy View Post
    Yeah, that should work. Be careful when automatically deleting source files...thoroughly test your ripping protocol on a small batch or two to make sure everything is working as expected. But once you're confident in your setup, dBp should make quick work of converting and relocating all those files.
    Yes, I plan on doing a few test before pulling the big trigger. Using 8 cores, DBp is taking about a minute per album. So, 2600+ WMA Albums should take about 44 hours. I'll have to make sure sleep and hibernate are turned off.

    Thanks again,

  11. #11

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    Re: Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

    Quote Originally Posted by mville View Post
    I would also backup the WMA files, before proceeding.
    Yes, I have four copies of the WMA files. I plan to pick up another portable external drive to store a copy of the WMA files just in case I need them Later. Then I'm going to replace all my other copies with the FLAC files. I have one copy on my music server, a copy on my main computer, a backup in the closet and a backup off site. I've had to re-rip three times and don't want to do it again.

    Quote Originally Posted by BrodyBoy View Post
    Cool...sounds like that issue's resolved. WMP keeps several different-sized copies of the cover art, if I recall correctly. That may explain why there are so many hidden files. They are still hidden, incidentally, because you also have to enable viewing of hidden system files (in Folder Options).
    Enable viewing of hidden files is turned on.

    folder options.JPG

    Quote Originally Posted by BrodyBoy View Post
    Yeah, that should work. Be careful when automatically deleting source files...thoroughly test your ripping protocol on a small batch or two to make sure everything is working as expected. But once you're confident in your setup, dBp should make quick work of converting and relocating all those files.
    Yes, I plan on doing a few test before pulling the big trigger. Using 8 cores, DBp is taking about a minute per album. So, 2600+ WMA Albums should take about 44 hours. I'll have to make sure sleep and hibernate are turned off.

    Sorry for double post.

    Thanks again,

  12. #12
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    Re: Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

    Quote Originally Posted by prpixel View Post
    Enable viewing of hidden files is turned on.

    folder options.JPG
    That's not the same as enabling viewing of hidden system files. Look down the list a bit (in your image)....see where it says "Hide protected operating system files"? You need to uncheck that.

  13. #13
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    Re: Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

    Quote Originally Posted by prpixel View Post
    Using 8 cores, DBp is taking about a minute per album. So, 2600+ WMA Albums should take about 44 hours. I'll have to make sure sleep and hibernate are turned off.
    Ooops....I read 2600 "tracks" at first. Still, I bet it'll go pretty fast.
    Last edited by BrodyBoy; 04-14-2015 at 04:02 PM.

  14. #14

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    Re: Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

    Quote Originally Posted by BrodyBoy View Post
    That's not the same as enabling viewing of hidden system files. Look down the list a bit (in your image)....see where it says "Hide protected operating system files"? You need to uncheck that.
    Missed that. Did the trick and now I can see those hidden files. It's three different sizes of album art, a thumbs.db file and a desktop.ini file.

    Thanks,

  15. #15
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    Re: Batch conversions of WMA lossless to Flac - preserve tags

    Quote Originally Posted by prpixel View Post
    Missed that. Did the trick and now I can see those hidden files. It's three different sizes of album art, a thumbs.db file and a desktop.ini file.

    Thanks,
    yes, that "junk" was created by windows media player.

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