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Excessive Copy Protection?, Mp3 related
Dub45
post Jan 3 2003, 05:31
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This may be old news to some of you but its the first time that I have come across it.

I have just bought a copy of 'Round about Roma' by Stefano Di Battista on Blue Note.
This disc does not seem to have been released in the US yet.

I put it into my pc to have a listen while I browsed and suddenly a player that I had never seen before appeared! Anyways the cd provides its own player but apparently will not allow me to use my usual player to rip it as I usually do for use on my ipod.

When I opened the cd through explorer it does not display the audio tracks separately.

This is infuriating (I dont share MP3s on the net and I don't download them) but I can't listen to an album that I have bought as I would wish!

I presume the introduction of the player is to get over the complaints of cds not being playable on pcs.

Any other incidents of such cds? What are other people's views?

Incidentally I tried to copy it on a 'normal hi-fi type copier and it wont copy either!
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Sachankara
post Jan 3 2003, 05:33
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Return the disc and demand your money back... Artists with extremely greedy labels should be boycotted...
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woody_woodward
post Jan 3 2003, 06:59
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I agree. The disk is defective. Take it back. The best way to stop this sort of copy ptotection is just not to buy it. Although I cannot recommend it to others, I would make an analog copy before returning it for a refund. wink.gif
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CiTay
post Jan 3 2003, 14:44
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QUOTE (Dub45 @ Jan 3 2003 - 05:31 AM)
I presume the introduction of the player is to get over the complaints of cds not being playable on pcs.

The player will most likely play compressed files (lossy of course), not the actual WAV files.
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theduke
post Jan 3 2003, 14:48
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QUOTE (CiTay @ Jan 3 2003 - 02:44 PM)
The player will most likely play compressed files (lossy of course), not the actual WAV files.

It will do so with 99.9% certainty. I have heard of such CDs and none has ever played back the original WAV files. Instead there is a second session on the CD which contains protected files like WMA and the included player can decode them.
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ronnie_t
post Jan 3 2003, 23:10
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see this topic on cdfreaks. It tells you how to recognize protections and defeat them for backup-purposes.
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Gecko
post Jan 4 2003, 00:05
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I've also had one of those (Dj Convention - Code Eleven). The software player on the accessible data session states that the file he is playing is 64kbit/s (you can clearly hear it's not the original). The freaky part is a "Checking System Integrity" dialog the first time the player is run. Don't know what it is checking for. Total Recorder perhaps? What bothers me the most, is that a beautiful song was drastically cut in length to make room for the extra data session.
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kennedyb4
post Jan 4 2003, 00:55
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QUOTE (woody_woodward @ Jan 3 2003 - 12:59 AM)
I agree.  The disk is defective.  Take it back.  The best way to stop this sort of copy ptotection is just not to buy it.  Although I cannot recommend it to others, I would make an analog copy before returning it for a refund.  wink.gif

Some would also consider ripping it via spdif in, compressing it and posting an albumwrap of the album on winmx.

Returning it is fine, but only a tiny fraction of people will do this.
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tigre
post Jan 4 2003, 03:41
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I got a similar cd as christmas present. It launchs its own player showing a bitrate of 47 kbps AFAIR. As it didn't play in two of my CD players I was "forced" to make a working copy.

It has been possible to rip it with EAC, secure mode, configured properly on two of my drives (LG 8x DVD, no-name 48x CD). The surface is perfectly clean and without any scratches, but EAC takes a long time for error correction. On the last track of the disc EAC tells "Copy OK", but everytime I copy/extract it CRC is different. On the other tracks CRC is the same all the time for each drive, but doesn't match between the drives. If I compare the WAVs, there are rhythmically repeated patterns of different samples ...

BTW: I found some way which made it possible to play the CD on all my drives as audio CD and rip it, but I'm not sure if posting details would violate Rule #9 of Hydrogen Audio Terms of Service. (Could someone tell me, please?)

In some internet database (found in HA's FAQ - protected audio CDs) they say my disc is copyprotected by Cactus Data Shield 200.


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Pio2001
post Jan 4 2003, 04:45
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QUOTE (tigre @ Jan 4 2003 - 05:41 AM)
there are rhythmically repeated patterns of different samples ...

Are there some contigous different samples ? If yes, how many in a row at most ?
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tigre
post Jan 4 2003, 13:28
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@Pio2001:

Before I forget about it: You're a HA moderator, so could you please tell me if I'm allowed to post my method to make my Plextor 121032A rip and play the copy protected disc. The way I understand forum rule # 9 I'm not, but I'm just not sure, because English is not my first language, I don't know much about U.S. laws and I saw others posting similar things without being stopped by HA staff.

To answer your question: In groups of different samples (details below) there are sometimes 2 or 3 contiguous different samples.

BTW, the CD is "Mensch" of Herbert Grönemeyer (German), EMI 2002

The first position with different samples is an exception (weird). The Plextor drive ripped about 3000 samples of digital silence (clearly audible wrong) in the middle of one song while all other drives' results are identical and sound fine at this position. IMO this is a strange behavior of the Plextor drive. C2 was deactivated, test & copy CRC are identical, I even tried with different firmware versions (with/without caching)!? blink.gif Any explanation?

Now the "regular" pattern of different samples:

1st block/group of different samples:
Left channel 459820, *845, *867, *880, *891, *893, ... last different sample 460384
Right channel 80% of different samples match left channel, same range (459820 - 460384)

Similar blocks, several 100 samples long, of different samples repeat approx. every 264600 samples.

I've got 4 wav files of every track and no matter which two of them I compare, the different samples are exactly the same (,but with different values for every drive, of course).

I'd like to know what you think about this. Tell me if you need more details about something or if my English messed up my message. The most important question for me of course is: How could I get rips with least/lowest possible errors without having to spend hours of handwork correcting sample values?

This post has been edited by tigre: Jan 4 2003, 13:29


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layer3maniac
post Jan 4 2003, 13:57
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QUOTE (tigre @ Jan 4 2003 - 04:28 AM)
could you please tell me if I'm allowed to post my method to make my Plextor 121032A rip and play the copy protected disc. The way I understand forum rule # 9 I'm not, but I'm just not sure, because English is not my first language, I don't know much about U.S. laws and I saw others posting similar things without being stopped by HA staff.

I'm not a mod, but I can assure you that there's no problem with posting your method of ripping a copy protected CD which you own. So... spill the beans already! biggrin.gif

BTW, IMHO the Plexy 121032A is the best burner EVER made.
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Guest_SK1_*
post Jan 4 2003, 14:47
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Maybe it's got something to do with a hacked firmware and that's why he wanted to make sure smile.gif.
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tigre
post Jan 4 2003, 16:58
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OK I trust layer3maniacs statement. What I did is no big deal and it's not new at all. I think it's known as marker pen crack or post-it crack or sticky tape crack ... and it worked. (Well, "secure mode" isn't secure anymore sad.gif.) For those who don't know it, have a look here.


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Pio2001
post Jan 4 2003, 22:47
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QUOTE (tigre @ Jan 4 2003 - 03:28 PM)
The first position with different samples is an exception (weird). The Plextor drive ripped about 3000 samples of digital silence (clearly audible wrong) in the middle of one song while all other drives' results are identical and sound fine at this position. IMO this is a strange behavior of the Plextor drive. C2 was deactivated, test & copy CRC are identical, I even tried with different firmware versions (with/without caching)!? :blink: Any explanation?


Maybe it has something to do with the sync markers of the CD. In http://www.digital-inn.de/showthread.php?t...=4833#post14345 , Andre Wiethoff wrote :
QUOTE
But Cactus Data Shield 200 is ugly...
illegal TOC, wrong syncmarkers, mastered C2 errors, multisession...

The syncmarkers are used by computer drive in order to access a given audio sector, while hifi players follow continuously the groove. Maybe the Plextor is disturbed by a missing syncmarker.

QUOTE (tigre @ Jan 4 2003 - 03:28 PM)
I've got 4 wav files of every track and no matter which two of them I compare, the different samples are exactly the same (,but with different values for every drive, of course).


Are these errors audible ?

This is a complicated matter. Any error should always return the same value, because it is concealed. EAC error correction (reading twice) and CRC mismatching must be triggered by some errors, even very few, that doesn't occur all the time. EAC compares blocks of 27 sectors, that is 15,876 samples, in order to search for errors in secure mode without C2. If only one error among these samples occurs reading once and doesn't the next time, the error correction bar lights up.

But different drives use different error detection algorithms. The mastered errors used by Datashield 200 should therefore be bad enough to defeat the most powerful chipsets. But then, the amount of wrong samples returned won't be the same on drives using different error correction strategies.

Therefore when you compare tracks ripped by different drives, the differences you see are the errors corrected by one drive and not by the other, and not all the errors on the CD. They should be always at the same place, but also have always the same value. Comparing with a third drive, you might get differences at the same place, and possibly with different values (if the error correction strategy is the same, but not the error concealment one).

But comparing two extractions from the same drive, it should be easy to see differences in the positions of the errors, because an error can only have two values : the right one (error corrected), or the interpolated one (error not corrected, thus concealed). Ripping thrice (A-B-C), all differences you can see between two given wavs (A-B) should therefore not be visible in at least one of the two other possible comparisons (A-C or B-C). This, assuming that the drive does conceal errors.

If you are insterested, you can try to detect the error correction and error concealment abilities of your drives following my method : http://pageperso.aol.fr/lyonpio2001/dae/dae.htm
It's not finished yet, but it can be useful here.
The way to detect the error correction strategy is explained in appendix 2. You don't need to understand all the calculus. All you need is understanding how to run Andre Wiethoff's DAEquality package, and download the calculated patterns at the end of part 3.3 of the appendix 2 of my page.
If a drive uses EFM info in order to flag errors, you will see bits of these patterns, with every other group of 2 or 3 wrong samples shifted 6 samples to the left.

There is no reason for these patterns to match yours, because Cactus datashield must not have used burst errors. But this way you can see if you must expect different behaviour between your drives, and if so, between which ones.

By the way it is strange that the errors show a regular pattern. Key2audio stated that the place of the errors was carefully chosen so as not to have an audible effect. Maybe it is not the case with Cactus Datashield.

QUOTE (tigre @ Jan 4 2003 - 03:28 PM)
How could I get rips with least/lowest possible errors without having to spend hours of handwork correcting sample values?


Use the SPDIF output of a hifi CD Player. Note that you need a soundcard capable of recording without resampling in order to get no errors.

It should be possible to correct the files on the computer if the error positions are always the same with Matlab. Mac successfully did it : http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index....t=ST&f=1&t=4206
The problem is to know all the exact positions. So far, you've only got the differences between the positions detected by one drive and the positions detected by another.

QUOTE (tigre @ Jan 4 2003 - 03:28 PM)
The way I understand forum rule # 9 I'm not


Quite strange indeed. I never noticed that this rule specified
QUOTE
9. Links to copyrighted or illegal material, discussion containing information of how to obtain such material, bypass protection methodologies of such material, or otherwise violate laws pertaining to such matters, will not be tolerated.

Fair use of short music clips (under 30 seconds) for codec testing purposes are allowed.

Users found in violation of this rule will be subject to immediate banishment.


Emphasis is mine.
If this rule would have been respected, I should have been banished as soon as I posted the FAQ thread, because of the link to CD Freaks about how to backup protected CDs.

Administrators, what are we going to do ? Modify rule 9, or remove the links ? On one hand, software capable of bypassing protections are illegal, on the other hand, one third of computer drives on the consumer market are natively capable of bypassing protected CDs... The problem is the status of audio CD protections... they actually do not prevent copying (analogly).

This post has been edited by Pio2001: Jan 4 2003, 22:52
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outscape
post Jan 5 2003, 07:58
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>>>'Anyways the cd provides its own player but apparently will not allow me to use my usual player to rip it as I usually do for use on my ipod.'<<<

heh, the player that keeps popping up, is it called "EverAd"? if it is, then it looks like the CD is protected with midbar's cactus data shield. and of all things, the "compressed" files the player plays are mp3 files created with LAME, wrapped around this stupid .CDS format that midbar created. pure hutzpa!

btw, did you check the copyright info on the CD, where is says © 2003 blah blah recordings, etc. does it say somewhere © 2003 cactus data shield courtesy of midbar or some kind of shit like that?

>>>Any other incidents of such cds? What are other people's views?'<<<

oh there are plenty of "copy-disabled" CDs around, especially in europe and japan. my view on this issue: return it to the store and tell 'em to shove it! get your money back. copy-disabled discs are non-standard CDs!


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ronnie_t
post Jan 5 2003, 13:10
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I succesfully made a backup of my cactus-protectected audio cd on my plextor 24x by lowering the Extractionspeed to 4x max. Before that, I had the same error pio2001 described.
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deej_1977
post Jan 5 2003, 14:29
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Hi all,

In this thread I complained about copy protection from Universal. Well I just found out that Cactus Data Shield 200 v3 is now in use on them. Both my Cd-rom and my CD-R are too old to do anything with these discs. Track 1 is full of jitter errors or sometimes even recognised as a data track... I'm also afraid that the CDS player is writing something in the registry...

Guess that since a short period, Universal DE is using CDS 200 v3... Wonder what's gonna happen when 300 comes out?

Greetz!

This post has been edited by deej_1977: Jan 5 2003, 14:59


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tigre
post Jan 8 2003, 19:42
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@Pio2001:
Thanks a lot for your detailed information. I think now I understand much better what happens when drives try to rip copy protected CDs with corrupt error protection info. I'll do the test you linked to soon (atm no drive with 1.8 gig free available).

Unfortunately I don't have a CD player with digital out and only VIA on board sound, so I had to find another way to get an "as close to secure as possible" rip. I've got some ideas how to use different drives', programs' and modes' (EAC) rips to improve security, but I wrote my last program 8 years ago (does anyone here remember DOS wink.gif), and now I'm too lazy to find out how it works again. I don't know where to get matlab (AFAIK it's quite expensive, there's no free trial version) neither how it works. So I (ab)used Cool Edit Pro.

First I had a closer look on differences between the rips (comparing number, position, value of different samples, comparing spectral views) and got the impression that my plex121032A did the best job. Lowering extraction speed to 7.9 avoided the "exception (weird)" error (see previous post). All extraction modes I tried (secure, paranoid, burst, even manually offset corrected CDmage extraction from CloneCD image) gave identical results. The ripped songs sounded fine to me without knowing about error/suspiscious sample positions.
The results of my LG DRD 8120B DVD also sounded decent, my no-name 48x CD-ROM drive produced some audible clicks (both drives EAC secure mode, C2 off, copy/test CRC match).
Having a look at a lot of positions where drives give different samples I found that for most samples where plex and LG-DVD give different values plex and no-name give the same. On the other hand on samples where plex and no-name give different values, plex and LG-DVD are identical. This makes me guess that plex is most correct. BTW there are very few samples where LG-DVD and no-name give the same value but plex gives a different.
My goal now was to get a mixed file of each CD track containing as much correct (= identical values by >= 2 Drives) samples as possible. Here's my way (ab)using Cool Edit Pro:

ripped files
p plextor secure noC2 7,9speed test/copy CRC OK "gold standard"
q 2nd drive
r 3rd drive ...
n new file, containing of best possible samples of p,q,r

algorithm
if p=q then n=p [# I]
else if p=r then n=p [# II]
else if q=r then n=q [# III]
else n=p [# IV; no values match, so trust "gold standard"]

simplified:
if q=r then n=q
else n=p

To "program" this in Cool edit I had to do following steps (note: dithering must be disabled):

1. Difference

a=q-r b=p-q

problem: "clipping": a and b can have every value between -65534 and 65534, while in 16 bit audio there are only values between -32767 and 32767 possible. Solution: amplify to 50% before substracting, add twice if needed, correction of introduced errors see 4.

a=q-r is done in CEP by a="mixpaste_overlap(invert®;q)" (for a clipping is not an issue, because it'll be "booleanized", see 2.)
b=0,5*p-0,5*q : b="mixpaste_overlap(invert(amplify(q;50%));amplify(q;50%))"

2. Goal: 0 sample stay 0 sample, convert everything else to 32767 (boolean 1)
function: "booleanize"

a_b=booleanize(a) : a_b="mixpaste_modulate(amplify(a;+91dB);amplify(a;+91dB))"

Mixpaste_modulate problem: CEP mixpaste_modulate (edit>mixpaste check modulate in dialog) is should multiplicate 2 values and divide by 32767. Checking the results I found out that it lowers the value by 1. So "Booleanize" produces 0 on zero samples, on all other samples sometimes 32766, instead of 32767.
To avoid this and get only 0 or 32767 samples I used a_b_new="amplify(a_b;+1dB)"

3. Goal: if for a sample a_b_new=32767, then sample value shall be n=p=2*b+q ; if a_b_new=0, sample value n=q
n="mixpaste_overlap(mixpaste_overlap(q;mixpaste_modulate(a_b_new;b));mixpaste_modulate(a_b_new;b))"

Here the "mixpaste_modulate problem" occured again. It produced differences of the value 1 (eg. 23765 instead of 23766).

4. Correction of "clipping" and "mixpaste_modulate" inaccuracies:

c=p-n : c="mixpaste_overlap(invert(n);p)" (clipping no issue, because further needed samples have small values)

c needs correction to make the following mixpaste_overlap operation exact. 0 samples have to stay 0, negative have to be decreased by 1, positive increased by 1 (see "mixpaste_modulation problem")

c_corrected="mixpaste_overlap(c;amplify(amplify(c;+91db);-90,3db))"

n_corrected="mixpaste_overlap(mixpaste_modulate(a_b_new;c_corrected);n)"

That's it. In a 4:30 minutes song there are about 200 "insecure" samples left (before there were thousands, comparing any 2 of the drives), at the questionable positions everything sounds fine, I can't find anything strange looking in spectral view either (AFAIR in spectral view you can see "bad" things you can only hear AFTER seeing tongue.gif). Probably I could even improve the result by using more than 3 drives/rips. But I'm satisfied with what I got (and have spent enough time on this). Ok, could be interesting how long it took: After figuring out and "debugging" (too long) it took about 3 minutes to perform this manipulation on a 4:30 song. It should be quite easy to be coded in a regular programming language. Someone interested? Or does something like this exist already?

Thanks for your patience reading this wink.gif


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neomoe
post Mar 18 2004, 06:23
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Tigre,

do you know a non-commercial program with what I can do something equal to what you did with cool edit?
and I do not really understand, what You exactly did.. huh.gif I mean this:

QUOTE
ripped files
p plextor secure noC2 7,9speed test/copy CRC OK "gold standard"
q 2nd drive
r 3rd drive ...
n new file, containing of best possible samples of p,q,r

algorithm
if p=q then n=p [# I]
else if p=r then n=p [# II]
else if q=r then n=q [# III]
else n=p [# IV; no values match, so trust "gold standard"]

simplified:
if q=r then n=q
else n=p

To "program" this in Cool edit I had to do following steps (note: dithering must be disabled):

1. Difference

a=q-r b=p-q

problem: "clipping": a and b can have every value between -65534 and 65534, while in 16 bit audio there are only values between -32767 and 32767 possible. Solution: amplify to 50% before substracting, add twice if needed, correction of introduced errors see 4.

a=q-r is done in CEP by a="mixpaste_overlap(invert®;q)" (for a clipping is not an issue, because it'll be "booleanized", see 2.)
b=0,5*p-0,5*q : b="mixpaste_overlap(invert(amplify(q;50%));amplify(q;50%))"

2. Goal: 0 sample stay 0 sample, convert everything else to 32767 (boolean 1)
function: "booleanize"

a_b=booleanize(a) : a_b="mixpaste_modulate(amplify(a;+91dB);amplify(a;+91dB))"

Mixpaste_modulate problem: CEP mixpaste_modulate (edit>mixpaste check modulate in dialog) is should multiplicate 2 values and divide by 32767. Checking the results I found out that it lowers the value by 1. So "Booleanize" produces 0 on zero samples, on all other samples sometimes 32766, instead of 32767.
To avoid this and get only 0 or 32767 samples I used a_b_new="amplify(a_b;+1dB)"

3. Goal: if for a sample a_b_new=32767, then sample value shall be n=p=2*b+q ; if a_b_new=0, sample value n=q
n=& quot;mixpaste_overlap(mixpaste_overlap(q;mixpaste_modulate(a_b_new;b));mixpaste_modulate(a_b_new;b))
"

Here the "mixpaste_modulate problem" occured again. It produced differences of the value 1 (eg. 23765 instead of 23766).

4. Correction of "clipping" and "mixpaste_modulate" inaccuracies:

c=p-n : c="mixpaste_overlap(invert(n);p)" (clipping no issue, because further needed samples have small values)

c needs correction to make the following mixpaste_overlap operation exact. 0 samples have to stay 0, negative have to be decreased by 1, positive increased by 1 (see "mixpaste_modulation problem")

c_corrected="mixpaste_overlap(c;amplify(amplify(c;+91db);-90,3db))"

n_corrected="mixpaste_overlap(mixpaste_modulate(a_b_new;c_corrected);n)"


could you give me an description for idiots?


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tigre
post Mar 18 2004, 07:46
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I don't know any software capable of doing this, although it should be very easy to code. I haven't tried it, but I'm pretty sure that SOX (commandline wave editor) can be used to do exactly the same. This could be done automatically with batch / script files, even some simple type of interpolation could be done that way. If someone wants to give it a try, feel free to ask if you need help.

An even better approach would be using the log files Andre Wiethoff's DAEQuality test creates (additionally): Just use some good interpolation algorithm to interpolate all samples with C2 error reported in the log file. I have some ideas about how to do this, but I've just started to learn C++, so it'll take some time until I could do it - and even if I can some day, most likely there'll be a motivation/time problem from my side ... - But if anyone else feels like coding it, I'd help as far as I can.


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shadowking
post Mar 18 2004, 08:56
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Sounds like Cactus data shield CDS200 protection. I've beaten it twice!


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Lev
post Mar 18 2004, 09:58
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QUOTE (Gecko @ Jan 4 2003, 12:05 AM)
What bothers me the most, is that a beautiful song was drastically cut in length to make room for the extra data session.

OH THATS JUST FUCKING APPAULING.

I'm writhing in my seat after reading that. mad.gif


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jido
post Mar 18 2004, 10:59
Post #24





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QUOTE (tigre @ Jan 3 2003, 06:41 PM)
I got a similar cd as christmas present. It launchs its own player showing a bitrate of 47 kbps AFAIR. As it didn't play in two of my CD players I was "forced" to make a working copy.

Happened to me as well. My review of the disc here:

Amazon music review
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tigre
post Mar 18 2004, 13:54
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Just in case noone noticed so far:

This thread is from january 2003.

It was resurrected by neomoe (after PMing me) to ask his question related to software that can correct clicks/glitches caused by drives applying sub-optimal interpolation at positions with (uncorrectable) C2/CU errors.

Of course it's ok to disuss the > 1 year old topic here again, but if both discussions continue simulataneously, the thread will be split.


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Let's suppose that rain washes out a picnic. Who is feeling negative? The rain? Or YOU? What's causing the negative feeling? The rain or your reaction? - Anthony De Mello
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