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Mac mini CD burning question.

 
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curt
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 2:51 am    Post subject: Mac mini CD burning question. Reply with quote

For the first time on my Mac mini I went to burn a CD in iTunes "Los Lonely Boys 12 tracks" and it took forever to burn. Are there any settings I should check? I already checked iTunes > Preferences > Burning and it's set to the max. I even thought it might be a bad disk and re-burnt another one. It literally took 30 minutes to burn! Could it be a bad drive?

Curt
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numediaman
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 3:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A couple of questions:

1) were these aiff files? If not, then the reason it took so long was because the files had to be converted to aiffs before they could be burned (it happens simultaneously, so this is why it is slow)

2) have you burned a data disc? A data disc is the easiest disc to burn and should burn at the max speed.


3) finally, do you have Toast? and if so, have you tried using this and compared the results?
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 5:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It obviously didn't agree with your taste of music and was letting you know it.

Very Happy

To be honest with you, I've noticed that my Mini and my Powerbook have always been slower than my 48x burner in Linux. I think the write speeds of their drives are like 16x max. Still, it shouldn't take 30 mins.
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curt
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 7:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
1) were these aiff files? If not, then the reason it took so long was because the files had to be converted to aiffs before they could be burned (it happens simultaneously, so this is why it is slow)


No they are MP3's.

Quote:
2) have you burned a data disc? A data disc is the easiest disc to burn and should burn at the max speed.


Yes just did today and everything seemed fine. Went to burn in iTunes and same deal it took forever!

Quote:
3) finally, do you have Toast? and if so, have you tried using this and compared the results?


No I don’t own Toast. Would there be any benefit of doing so?
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Last edited by curt on Thu Mar 17, 2005 7:31 pm; edited 2 times in total
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curt
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 7:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

bubba wrote:
It obviously didn't agree with your taste of music and was letting you know it.

Very Happy

To be honest with you, I've noticed that my Mini and my Powerbook have always been slower than my 48x burner in Linux. I think the write speeds of their drives are like 16x max. Still, it shouldn't take 30 mins.


LOL come on the Boys are pretty good! I've heard before that Apple's reported burning speeds aren't always true. Is that true?
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numediaman
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2005 11:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Clearly the slowness in the CD burn was caused by iTunes decoding the MP3s and converting them to aiffs. In other words, it was not a burn issue.

You can do a couple of things to help burn those mp3s: first, you can convert them first before deciding to burn to disc. You can do this with iTunes, or any number of free audio tools. The advantage in doing this is that the mp3s may be mistracked or contain more dead time than you wish. You can then use a program like Garageband or a free one like Audacity to edit the aiffs into shape.

Second, you can use Toast -- it tends to convert and burn faster. The reason I have it, however, is that it burns DVDs with menus (primative menus admittedly), burns from image discs (you can also do this with the Mac utility program "disk utility"), and will burn VCDs and SVCDs. You also get a nice little program called CD Spin Doctor that will remove hiss and (some) pops from LPs and old tapes. It also can break up long tracks into separate aiff files. Its not free, but its nice to have.

I would say that your mini is fine -- you'll just have to be patient with those pesky mp3s!
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curt
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2005 1:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

numediaman

Thanks for all the good info and I really appreciate it! Even though it has to convert the MP3 files it seems like it should be faster, perhaps I should increase my memory to 1GB. I think next paycheck I'll pick up a copy of Toast and give it a try. I was playing around with Radio Lover this evening. Are you familiar with this program?
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numediaman
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2005 11:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Looks like an interesting program. To be honest, I don't work with mp3s very much anymore. Usually I only convert something to mp3 when I bring some music onto my laptop for a trip (using it like an iPod, I suppose), or when I convert an old LP (like a 2 or 3 record set) to mp3 in order to fit it on one CD -- and I only do this when the LP is in pretty bad shape -- and then I convert it to 320 kbps.

More RAM isn't going to help you -- unless you only have 256. If that's the case, then do it NOW! But if you have 512 the slowness would be caused by either the processor or the program.

I don't listen to music usually found at the iTunes store, and I don't download commercial music, so I usually work in FLAC or SHN formats. These are lossless formats that convert very quickly. Converting an mp3 is more like video -- its more processor intensive.
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g5g5
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2005 7:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This might sound crazy but try a different brand of blank disks. Some brands of blank disks use green and blue bottoms and some burners can be picking about those colors. I had a somewhat similar problem with an old iBook and when I started using disks with silver or gold problems the problem got better. I know it sounds crazy but it might be worth a try becasue maybe you have some bad disks to begin with!
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curt
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 19, 2005 5:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
More RAM isn't going to help you -- unless you only have 256. If that's the case, then do it NOW! But if you have 512 the slowness would be caused by either the processor or the program.


No I have 512

Quote:
lossless formats


What do you think of Apple's?
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John
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2005 11:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So far burning CDs & DVDs is my only complaint with my Mini. I think there must be little or no buffer in the drive itself. For the first time in years I've had under-run errors ruining the disk being burned. Now if I try to burn a disk I don't even touch the keyboard until it's done. If I plan on doing a lot of burning, I switch over to my Windows PC & use Roxio and a NEC DVD burner. There I have 1.5MB buffer in the drive itself & Roxio maintains a seperate cache in RAM.
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blazer
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2005 1:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

John, How much memory do you have? I agree with just about everything you said. The mini is not a great burner! I posted on here about maxing out the memory to 1GB. With the mini’s slow 4200rpm hard drive you have to max out the memory so things are not off-loaded to it. When things such as Music files are converted during burning the hard drive plays a somewhat important role. Just some thoughts…
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 29, 2005 3:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

512MB. IF I leave the Mini alone while burning, it does just fine. I think there must be little or no buffer in the drive itself.

I tried direct to disk option in iDVD. Worked fine BUT a 60min miniDV tape took over four hours! One hour to capture the tape data, three hours to create mpeg2 version for DVD & then burn time (which I didn't observe). The results were letter perfect, but it's not the kind of thing you do in a hurry!
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2005 1:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

numediaman wrote:
CUTI don't listen to music usually found at the iTunes store, and I don't download commercial music, so I usually work in FLAC or SHN formats. These are lossless formats that convert very quickly. CUT.


My kindaguy! Real audio-lover! Very Happy
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James T. Kirk©
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2005 1:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

John wrote:
So far burning CDs & DVDs is my only complaint with my Mini. I think there must be little or no buffer in the drive itself. For the first time in years I've had under-run errors ruining the disk being burned. Now if I try to burn a disk I don't even touch the keyboard until it's done. If I plan on doing a lot of burning, I switch over to my Windows PC & use Roxio and a NEC DVD burner. There I have 1.5MB buffer in the drive itself & Roxio maintains a seperate cache in RAM.


What! Doesn't the drive has buffer-underrun protection?? My old Philips 8x cdrw doesn't have that, which I DO expect, not a modern day DVD/cdrw combo drive! Evil or Very Mad
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