Looking for an all encompassing application to handle your audio files and not willing to spend a penny? Then you should try working with Max.
This open source program allows you to rip music from CDs and convert the music to any of 20 different formats. You should also normally find the right codec for the format you're looking for. The multi windowed interface is a bit of a turnoff to me and a little contrary to what you usually see in applications these days but in a way it separates all the elements of Max clearly.
Max is easy to use and performs all operations very well. The quality of files after conversion is generally very good. The ripper works through tracks quickly and you can use cdparanoia to recover damaged audio files.
The main draw back to the program would be the fairly complicated tagging system. Max works with MusicBrainz to recover track information from the internet, but you won't necessary find all your looking for.
If you're looking for a complete audio solution to rip cds and convert the tracks to another format, then Max is an excellent free solution.
Spanish localization added.
Tracks can be split using external cue sheets or FLAC embedded cue sheets
Improved MP3 decoding using MAD
FLAC upgraded to 1.2.1.
WavPack upgraded to 4.41.0
aoTuV upgraded to beta5
Loads of codecs
Rip and correct discs
Complicated tagging system
MusicBrainz doesn't always have info
Multin windowed interface a bit of a turnoff
Max is an application for creating high-quality audio files in various formats, from compact discs or files.
When extracting audio from compact discs, Max offers the maximum in flexibility to ensure the true sound of your CD is faithfully extracted. For pristine discs, Max offers a high-speed ripper with no error correction. For damaged discs, Max can either use its built-in comparison ripper (for drives that cache audio) or the error-correcting power of cdparanoia.
Once the audio is extracted, Max can generate audio in over 20 compressed and uncompressed formats including MP3, Ogg Vorbis, FLAC, AAC, Apple Lossless, Monkey's Audio, WavPack, Speex, AIFF, and WAVE.
If you would like to convert your audio from one format to another, Max can read and write audio files in over 20 compressed and uncompressed formats at almost all sample rates and and in most sample sizes. For many popular formats the artist and album metadata is transferred seamlessly between the old and new files. Max can even split a single audio file into multiple tracks using a cue sheet.
Max leverages open source components and the resources of Mac OS X to provide extremely high-quality output. For example, MP3 encoding is accomplished with LAME, Ogg Vorbis encoding with aoTuV, FLAC encoding with libFLAC, and AAC and Apple Lossless encoding with Core Audio. Many PCM conversions are also possible using Core Audio and libsndfile.
Max is integrated with MusicBrainz to permit automatic retrieval of compact disc information. For MP3, FLAC, Ogg FLAC, Ogg Vorbis, Monkey's Audio, WavPack, AAC and Apple Lossless files Max will write this metadata to the output.
Max allows full control over where output files are placed and what they are named. If desired, Max will even add the encoded files to your iTunes library in a playlist of your choice.
For advanced users, Max allows control over how many threads are used for encoding, what type of error correction is used for audio extraction, and what parameters are used for each of the various encoders.
"Sketchy but not difficult and works perfectly right."
Bit of sketchy to use as you have to set up the codec from the settings each time you desire to do so. Other than that it's not difficult to use and works like a charm.
Laws concerning the use of this software vary from country to country. We do not encourage or condone the use of this program if it is in violation of these laws.
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