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NTI CD-Maker puts goddamn CLICKS between audio tracks?

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Anonymous
January 12, 2005 2:57:42 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

I'm in the process of making digital recordings of all my old analog
albums, using an old SB Live card in an even older PC. The recording
process works fine, as long as I allow several dB of headroom above the
highest peaks -- the SBLive has a rather soft analog clip a bit below
the digital limit.

The problem comes when I attempt to burn the audio from my hard drive
onto a CD. This is done on a more up-to-date machine, which is running
Windows 2000 (I just couldn't stomach XP) and has NTI CD-Maker "2000
Plus" v5.1.17, some version of which comes with most burners. I divide
the giant WAV recording into tracks, and then slap those tracks into
CD-Maker and burn the disc... and when I play it back, there's this
huge CLICK every time it crosses a track change!

Is this something other people have run into, or is it my own special
good fortune? Is this a known shortcoming of NTI CD-Maker 5? Has
anyone solved this problem by changing software or hardware or
something, or is this something I just have to deal with by guesswork?

And if NTI is the problem, as I suppose is probably the case, what do
people recommend as a simple and affordable replacement for it?
Thanks for any help you can give.
Anonymous
January 12, 2005 9:21:42 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

This is sometimes a problem when burning in Track-at-Once mode instead of
Disc-at-Once mode, which you should normally do anyway.
NTI has tech support, maybe talk to them if you can't figure how to do this,
but it should be there in the Options somewhere.

The clicks are probably caused by a DC offset, however slight, at the
beginning of the tracks. Some editing software can probably fix this. My old
DC Art program did. If not DC then the "click" can be edited out just like
any other click or pop.

Mark Z.

<paul-NOZPAM@paulkienitz.net> wrote in message
news:1105516662.408141.17770@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com...
> I'm in the process of making digital recordings of all my old analog
> albums, using an old SB Live card in an even older PC. The recording
> process works fine, as long as I allow several dB of headroom above the
> highest peaks -- the SBLive has a rather soft analog clip a bit below
> the digital limit.
>
> The problem comes when I attempt to burn the audio from my hard drive
> onto a CD. This is done on a more up-to-date machine, which is running
> Windows 2000 (I just couldn't stomach XP) and has NTI CD-Maker "2000
> Plus" v5.1.17, some version of which comes with most burners. I divide
> the giant WAV recording into tracks, and then slap those tracks into
> CD-Maker and burn the disc... and when I play it back, there's this
> huge CLICK every time it crosses a track change!
>
> Is this something other people have run into, or is it my own special
> good fortune? Is this a known shortcoming of NTI CD-Maker 5? Has
> anyone solved this problem by changing software or hardware or
> something, or is this something I just have to deal with by guesswork?
>
> And if NTI is the problem, as I suppose is probably the case, what do
> people recommend as a simple and affordable replacement for it?
> Thanks for any help you can give.
>
Anonymous
January 12, 2005 9:50:56 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

paul wrote ...
> I'm in the process of making digital recordings of all
> my old analog albums, using an old SB Live card in
> an even older PC. The recording process works fine,
> as long as I allow several dB of headroom above the
> highest peaks -- the SBLive has a rather soft analog clip
> a bit below the digital limit.

My condolonces. The limiting is really harsh. I threw out
the lousy thing and went and bought a $14 generic sound
card that sounds 300% better.

> The problem comes when I attempt to burn the audio from
> my hard drive onto a CD. This is done on a more up-to-
> date machine, which is running Windows 2000 (I just couldn't
> stomach XP) and has NTI CD-Maker "2000 Plus" v5.1.17,
> some version of which comes with most burners. I divide
> the giant WAV recording into tracks, and then slap those
> tracks into CD-Maker and burn the disc... and when I play
> it back, there's this huge CLICK every time it crosses a
> track change!

I have found that if you don't "fade-in" at the beginning of the track
and "fade-out" at the end, you will hear the step function as the
CD player un-mutes from zero to whatever DC offset is in your
audio data.
January 12, 2005 12:36:14 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

Have a look at "The Issue of CD Block Size" in the info page
http://www.delback.co.uk/lp-cdr.htm

That may explain your problem.

paul-NOZPAM@paulkienitz.net wrote:

> I'm in the process of making digital recordings of all my old analog
> albums, using an old SB Live card in an even older PC. The recording
> process works fine, as long as I allow several dB of headroom above the
> highest peaks -- the SBLive has a rather soft analog clip a bit below
> the digital limit.
>
> The problem comes when I attempt to burn the audio from my hard drive
> onto a CD. This is done on a more up-to-date machine, which is running
> Windows 2000 (I just couldn't stomach XP) and has NTI CD-Maker "2000
> Plus" v5.1.17, some version of which comes with most burners. I divide
> the giant WAV recording into tracks, and then slap those tracks into
> CD-Maker and burn the disc... and when I play it back, there's this
> huge CLICK every time it crosses a track change!
>
> Is this something other people have run into, or is it my own special
> good fortune? Is this a known shortcoming of NTI CD-Maker 5? Has
> anyone solved this problem by changing software or hardware or
> something, or is this something I just have to deal with by guesswork?
>
> And if NTI is the problem, as I suppose is probably the case, what do
> people recommend as a simple and affordable replacement for it?
> Thanks for any help you can give.
>
Anonymous
January 12, 2005 1:55:34 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

"Richard Crowley" <rcrowley7@xprt.net> wrote in message
news:10uaeahder956f4@corp.supernews.com

>> The problem comes when I attempt to burn the audio from
>> my hard drive onto a CD. This is done on a more up-to-
>> date machine, which is running Windows 2000 (I just couldn't
>> stomach XP) and has NTI CD-Maker "2000 Plus" v5.1.17,
>> some version of which comes with most burners. I divide
>> the giant WAV recording into tracks, and then slap those
>> tracks into CD-Maker and burn the disc... and when I play
>> it back, there's this huge CLICK every time it crosses a
>> track change!

> I have found that if you don't "fade-in" at the beginning of the track
> and "fade-out" at the end, you will hear the step function as the
> CD player un-mutes from zero to whatever DC offset is in your
> audio data.

Agreed - doing proper fade-in and fade-out at the end of every track can
save a lot of grief. This is particularly true of vinyl and cassette
transcriptions.

Often, with a little artful fade-in and fade-out, you can almost make it
seem like those old cassettes and LPs really didn't have a lot of background
noise.
Anonymous
January 12, 2005 10:17:52 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

In article <1105516662.408141.17770@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com>,
<paul-NOZPAM@paulkienitz.net> wrote:

>I'm in the process of making digital recordings of all my old analog
>albums, using an old SB Live card in an even older PC. The recording
>process works fine, as long as I allow several dB of headroom above the
>highest peaks -- the SBLive has a rather soft analog clip a bit below
>the digital limit.
>
>The problem comes when I attempt to burn the audio from my hard drive
>onto a CD. This is done on a more up-to-date machine, which is running
>Windows 2000 (I just couldn't stomach XP) and has NTI CD-Maker "2000
>Plus" v5.1.17, some version of which comes with most burners. I divide
>the giant WAV recording into tracks, and then slap those tracks into
>CD-Maker and burn the disc... and when I play it back, there's this
>huge CLICK every time it crosses a track change!
>
>Is this something other people have run into, or is it my own special
>good fortune?

It would be worth "ripping" the resulting CD, and taking a look at the
digital version of the track transitions.

When a CD is burned in "track at once" mode, it is normal for the
burner to place a two-second "pregap" between tracks. This pregap is
usually filled with "digital silence" - that is, zero samples.

The click you are hearing could come from any of several things:

[1] If your audio WAV file has a DC offset in it - that is, if the
average value is not close to zero - then the transitions from
"WAV file silence" to "digital-zero silence" would involve a
sudden jump in the level. You'd probably hear a pair of
clicks, separated by two seconds.

[2] If you are cutting the WAV files into track segments using software
which is not "CD aware", you might be putting the cut points at
locations which don't correspond to CD frame boundaries (1/75 of a
second). This would force CD Maker to either discard a fraction
of a frame's worth of data, or pad out the last frame with
zeros... and it's even possible that a bug in the software causes
it to pad the last frame with garbage or with repeated data
(either of which would probably cause noise).

I suggest that you might get better results if you use software which
allows you to record in "disc at once" mode, and use the burning
software to set the inter-track boundaries. This allows the
transcribed LP data to be burned as a single digital stream (per
side of the album), without the two-second digital-silence pregap
placed between tracks.

I do this on Linux using the "cdrdao" software (and its GCDMaster
graphical user interface front-end) with very good results.

--
Dave Platt <dplatt@radagast.org> AE6EO
Hosting the Jade Warrior home page: http://www.radagast.org/jade-warrior
I do _not_ wish to receive unsolicited commercial email, and I will
boycott any company which has the gall to send me such ads!
Anonymous
January 12, 2005 10:35:25 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

Dave Platt wrote:

> When a CD is burned in "track at once" mode, it is normal for the
> burner to place a two-second "pregap" between tracks. This pregap is
> usually filled with "digital silence" - that is, zero samples.
>
> The click you are hearing could come from any of several things:
>
> [1] If your audio WAV file has a DC offset in it - that is, if the
> average value is not close to zero - then the transitions from
> "WAV file silence" to "digital-zero silence" would involve a
> sudden jump in the level. You'd probably hear a pair of
> clicks, separated by two seconds.

My tracks do have a fade-in and fade-out... I made them just a few
milliseconds long so the ear wouldn't notice a hole in the background
noise. And I just checked and the software is burning disc-at-once.

> [2] If you are cutting the WAV files into track segments using
software
> which is not "CD aware", you might be putting the cut points at
> locations which don't correspond to CD frame boundaries (1/75 of
a
> second). This would force CD Maker to either discard a fraction
> of a frame's worth of data, or pad out the last frame with
> zeros... and it's even possible that a bug in the software causes
> it to pad the last frame with garbage or with repeated data
> (either of which would probably cause noise).

That must be it. So what's the exact size I have to use a multiple of?
(google google) 588 samples, right?

The software's documentation seems to claim that this should not be a
problem... Okay, I'm going to try padding my tracks to multiples of
588.

> I suggest that you might get better results if you use software which
> allows you to record in "disc at once" mode, and use the burning
> software to set the inter-track boundaries. This allows the
> transcribed LP data to be burned as a single digital stream (per
> side of the album), without the two-second digital-silence pregap
> placed between tracks.
>
> I do this on Linux using the "cdrdao" software (and its GCDMaster
> graphical user interface front-end) with very good results.

I wonder what there is for Windoze that does this. NTI doesn't have
such a feature. Since my files are mostly not divided into tracks,
saving that step would help.
January 17, 2005 9:44:44 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

paul-NOZPAM@paulkienitz.net wrote in
news:1105516662.408141.17770@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com:

> I'm in the process of making digital recordings of all my old analog
> albums, using an old SB Live card in an even older PC. The recording
> process works fine, as long as I allow several dB of headroom above the
> highest peaks -- the SBLive has a rather soft analog clip a bit below
> the digital limit.
>
> The problem comes when I attempt to burn the audio from my hard drive
> onto a CD. This is done on a more up-to-date machine, which is running
> Windows 2000 (I just couldn't stomach XP) and has NTI CD-Maker "2000
> Plus" v5.1.17, some version of which comes with most burners. I divide
> the giant WAV recording into tracks, and then slap those tracks into
> CD-Maker and burn the disc... and when I play it back, there's this
> huge CLICK every time it crosses a track change!
>
> Is this something other people have run into, or is it my own special
> good fortune? Is this a known shortcoming of NTI CD-Maker 5? Has
> anyone solved this problem by changing software or hardware or
> something, or is this something I just have to deal with by guesswork?
>
> And if NTI is the problem, as I suppose is probably the case, what do
> people recommend as a simple and affordable replacement for it?
> Thanks for any help you can give.
>

I recently installed a new DVD/CD burner on my PC and it came with the Nero
software. For once in my life, I decided to RTFM first and I ran across
this little gem, which might be the solution to your problem...

"If possible, audio CDs should always be burned in the 'Disc-at-once' mode.
This will make the most out of the features the Nero offers and will avoid
unwanted 'hiss and crackle' between individual tracks."

I'm not familiar with the NTI software, but if does support Disc-at-once,
try it.

Jim
Anonymous
January 17, 2005 10:34:12 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

> I recently installed a new DVD/CD burner on my PC and it
> came with the Nero software. For once in my life, I decided
> to RTFM first and I ran across this little gem, which might be
> the solution to your problem...
>
> "If possible, audio CDs should always be burned in the
> 'Disc-at-once' mode. This will make the most out of the
> features the Nero offers and will avoid unwanted 'hiss
> and crackle' between individual tracks."

Unless they can offer a competent technical explanation of how
this happens, it sounds like marketing gibberish. No proper
CD player will un-mute unless it has a reliable bitstream of
audio data to decode. Extraneous digits at the beginning and
end of a "track" will be thrown away as noise before they ever
get translated into audio.
January 18, 2005 4:00:02 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

"Richard Crowley" <rcrowley7@xprt.net> wrote in news:10up0tltjtpl635
@corp.supernews.com:

>> I recently installed a new DVD/CD burner on my PC and it
>> came with the Nero software. For once in my life, I decided
>> to RTFM first and I ran across this little gem, which might be
>> the solution to your problem...
>>
>> "If possible, audio CDs should always be burned in the
>> 'Disc-at-once' mode. This will make the most out of the
>> features the Nero offers and will avoid unwanted 'hiss
>> and crackle' between individual tracks."
>
> Unless they can offer a competent technical explanation of how
> this happens, it sounds like marketing gibberish. No proper
> CD player will un-mute unless it has a reliable bitstream of
> audio data to decode. Extraneous digits at the beginning and
> end of a "track" will be thrown away as noise before they ever
> get translated into audio.

No, it doesn't sound like marketing giberish. Earlier in the manual they
described the difference between track-at-once and disc-at-once recording.
Apparently they (and, presumably, others) turn off the laser between tracks
when recording in track-at-once mode; in disc-at-once mode, the laser stays
on and gives a clean transition from track to track. In other words, in
track-at-once mode, the entity being recorded is the track, not the
complete disc.

I still think it's a worthwhile experiment for the original poster,
assuming that he's still using the NTI software and that NTI supports disc-
at-once recording.
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 4:00:03 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

"Jim" wrote ...
> No, it doesn't sound like marketing giberish. Earlier in the
> manual they described the difference between track-at-once
> and disc-at-once recording. Apparently they (and, presumably,
> others) turn off the laser between tracks when recording in
> track-at-once mode; in disc-at-once mode, the laser stays
> on and gives a clean transition from track to track. In other
> words, in track-at-once mode, the entity being recorded is
> the track, not the complete disc.

Hate to break it to you, but virtually all CDR hardware and
software uses both track-at-once and disc-at-once modes.
If you can't cite any information beyond the original gibberish,
suggest learning how CD players work might be instructional.
January 18, 2005 9:09:01 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

"Richard Crowley" <rcrowley7@xprt.net> wrote in
news:10uqbg1333erb82@corp.supernews.com:

> "Jim" wrote ...
>> No, it doesn't sound like marketing giberish. Earlier in the
>> manual they described the difference between track-at-once
>> and disc-at-once recording. Apparently they (and, presumably,
>> others) turn off the laser between tracks when recording in
>> track-at-once mode; in disc-at-once mode, the laser stays
>> on and gives a clean transition from track to track. In other
>> words, in track-at-once mode, the entity being recorded is
>> the track, not the complete disc.
>
> Hate to break it to you, but virtually all CDR hardware and
> software uses both track-at-once and disc-at-once modes.
> If you can't cite any information beyond the original gibberish,
> suggest learning how CD players work might be instructional.

Not being so quick to pull the trigger on gratuitous putdowns in your posts
could be helpful, too.

I simply quoted material in Nero's user manual where they recommended using
disc-at-once mode instead of track-at-once for recording audio CDs.
Granted, the manual is dumbed down, but I've got to assume that they have
valid reasons for making that recommendation. I can't see how their
recommendation could be interpreted as marketing-related.

-- JS
Anonymous
January 19, 2005 1:29:52 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.tech (More info?)

"Jimbo" wrote ...
> I simply quoted material in Nero's user manual where they recommended
> using
> disc-at-once mode instead of track-at-once for recording audio CDs.
> Granted, the manual is dumbed down, but I've got to assume that they
> have
> valid reasons for making that recommendation. I can't see how their
> recommendation could be interpreted as marketing-related.

Good luck.
!