The process of ripping audio has gotten a bad rap over the years as the music industry has reeled with the blow of dropping CD sales. Blaming improved technology that makes copying and saving MP3s from CDs far easier than ever, the music industry has made several efforts over the years to curtail the use of these MP3 ripper software applications.
Their efforts, however, have been cut short by one very compelling fact – creating new versions of a CD that has already been purchased by the user is not illegal and additionally, there are very good reasons to do so.
First, creating backup copies of CDs, which often can get scratched with hard use (certainly an issue for the most favorite albums and tracks) makes perfect sense. And for collectors who still want to enjoy the music they purchase, creating a second copy for real “use” and keeping the original safe on a shelf somewhere makes perfect sense.
Second, today’s technology requires the use of digital formats, despite the fact that the music industry insists on continuing to push CDs. While the sale of CDs won’t likely entirely disappear for many years, the fact is that of the biggest music purchasers (teens and tweens) use of CD players is likely non-existent. Even for older music lovers, MP3 players and smart phones with audio and speaker options make CDs simply an outdated technology that has to be adjusted for use with newer technology.
While many music lovers still have stereos that play music CDs, even these devices will become obsolete as MP3 players and other small audio devices allow for extended use through a simple hookup with stereo speakers.
So while use of audio CDs will not be lost forever anytime soon, it is quite clear that the need for users to be able to “rip” and convert their existing CD collection to digital format is what keeps MP3 audio ripping software at the forefront of music software options.
When selecting a software application to rip audio CD files it is important to think first of the anticipated or required end result. Consider where the created digital files will be used and what formats are required for this use. A slick software application does the user no good if the required audio output format isn’t an available option.
Additionally consider an application that allows for search and organization of large music databases. Most users will likely be purchasing software for many CDs, not just for one or two. The option to easily search a large database will pay off in spades when the CD audio files begin to grow.
Below are the criteria TopTenREVIEWS used to evaluate the MP3 ripper software rated on this site:
Appeal & Ease of Use
MP3 ripping software should be easy to navigate and allow the user to utilize most features rather easily. A well-designed user interface will make the process of selecting tracks, editing MP3 tags, and ripping audio very simple and intuitive.
Most of the audio format options in the MP3 ripping software reviewed here provide an acceptable number of audio format options, however keep in mind the end use of the output files. If the device that needs digital audio files needs an AVI format but the software purchased doesn’t have this option, that’s money down the drain.
Audio Ripping Features
This section highlights the many features available for ripping audio CD files. This includes the ability to find and edit MP3 tag information as well as options for navigating various features through the interface.
Audio Play/Burn Features
While many of these features may seem like “bonus” features, the highly competitive MP3 ripping software market requires that these additional features be reviewed as well. This section may include items like printing CD labels or searching and organizing database records.
Help & Support
Help and support options are especially important for the beginner but can also be important for the advanced user. Help, preferable help included with the software purchase, should allow the user to find assistance when using a tricky feature, or when the user is stuck and unable to complete the ripping process.
Whether a beginner or a more advanced user the reviewed features above cover the basics of a good MP3 ripper software application. By analyzing the user’s output needs and considering the complexities of large databases, any user can choose of the application options in this review and begin ripping audio CD files in no time! Be sure to check out our top ranked products; Blaze Media Pro, MediaMonkey Gold and Nero Burning ROM and helpful articles on MP3 ripper software.
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