Author Topic: Workflow Advice?  (Read 3356 times)

Killer Bee

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Hi Gang,

While I haven't been terribly active in terms of posting to the forum, I regularly read new posts and glean what I can from all of you.

I have only used MB for about 4 months so I consider myself a relative newbie.

We have some extremely knowledgeable members that provide input regularly and help the MB community grow and thrive.

Here is an opportunity for each of you to provide your feedback. I did a forum search and did not see a similar topic so my apologies if one does exist.

When managing your music collection(s), what workflow do you follow?

Feel free to add screen shots and mention 3rd party software that you utilize (and why).

Much appreciated!
"You know what music is? God’s little reminder that there’s something else besides us in this universe; A harmonic connection between all living beings, everywhere...even the stars."~ Robin Williams


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All my new music goes straight to my inbox, where it gets filed. I recently set up the Inbox tab with a custom layout that highlights all the tags I have to check before I can send it to my library:

Aside from that, I don't really have any super specific workflow, unless you're talking about the details of exactly what rules I follow when tagging tracks and what virtual tags I use...

I recently standardized the way I format names, and let virtual tags do the work of changing them for various purposes. For example, I like composers to be in Lastname, Firstname format.


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Great question, hard to answer!

In terms of MusicBee, I add all new files to my Music folder, from whence "automatically sweep and organize new files" reorganizes them into the Inbox subfolder (retaining original filenames, because sometimes that's the only metadata I have at first).  I personally use the Inbox as a sort of "testing" playlist, until I decide whether or not to add something to my library.

Usually while it's still in the inbox, but sometimes after it's in the library, I use MusicBrainz Picard to tag most files. For stuff that's older or less mainstream, that often involves adding it to the database, which is its own whole process.  (I like Picard because it provides more detailed data and allows fine control of how tags are handled, through scripting.)

Once I add something to the main library, auto-organize reorganizes it from the Inbox folder to the Music subfolder (i.e. Music\Music), roughly by First Letter\Artist\Year - Album\Track#-TrackTitle.  There are a fair number of exceptions it has to handle, too.

There are a lot of extra steps involved in tagging artwork, classical info, genres, etc.  I'm always fine-tuning.  I have custom tags for music which I own in a physical format, tagging billboard chart info (a whole spreadsheet and a website just for this), handling compilations, storing MusicBrainz IDs for artist, track, and album, etc.  But those are on-going projects, may never be complete.
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Killer Bee

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Thanks for the screen shot and replies!

It is always cool to see what other members are doing with their collections since we all seem to have our own methods and work arounds.  8)

I don't have a set workflow yet......thus this thread.

I have always used MP3Tag in the past but I think I may give TagScanner a go and see how I like it.

Other software (outside of MusicBee) that I am looking to incorporate... at this point... is EAC, dbPoweramp, MP3Gain and Mp3Diags.

Anyway, if anyone else would like to contribute to this thread please feel free.
"You know what music is? God’s little reminder that there’s something else besides us in this universe; A harmonic connection between all living beings, everywhere...even the stars."~ Robin Williams


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Here's what I generally do.

If ripping to FLAC is required, EAC for that. Individual FLAC files, not an image/cue.
If I'm starting out with FLAC files  ;) I obviously skip EAC.
FLAC files I know I'm going to save/archive go into MusicBrainz Picard for tagging otherwise I just check and throw some rough tags in there using mp3tag if needed.  

I have a batch file I wrote that does the rest of the following to convert to V0 MP3 for listening when I drag and drop files onto it
- Pull metadata from the FLAC to a text file / art to a jpg via ffmpeg
- Convert FLAC to WAV in SOX
- Cut end silence from each file.  Normalize if need be (older CDs)
- Encode via LAME
- Insert the metadata to mp3 from text file via ffmpeg
- Embed the art from jpg to mp3 via metamp3.exe
- Cleanup

There are probably 10000 different and easier ways to accomplish this, but it's something I've developed over time and it's kind of a pride/joy of creation thing at this point.  

The reason I don't just do the conversion in MB or Foobar is the step in the middle of getting rid of those two seconds of silence at the end of each track.  They annoy me, and "skip silence" is flaky.

The mp3s go into Foobar for ReplayGain and BPM tagging.  I find Foobar fastest at calculating replaygain for some unknown reason.  I used to do this in the batch using a command line tool but Foobar is faster and easier than that was.

Then the MP3s go into Picard because FFMPEG fails/sucks at mapping some of the tags from FLAC to MP3.  I could probably skip doing it in ffmpeg altogether, but I find that if it's something that Picard acoustic scan doesn't know/find, having some tags there helps in accurate lookups.  And, if Picard doesn't know it at all even through a lookup, there's at least some data there that can be adjusted manually in mp3tag as a last resort.

Import to MB.  Organize.  I usually find better quality art more easily in MB, so if the files need it this is when I do it.

Listen. Enjoy.


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I have always used MP3Tag in the past but I think I may give TagScanner a go and see how I like it.

I like Tagscanner for the artwork custom/auto resizing and clean GUI;  Mp3tag and Kid3 give more detailed editing in some cases, like being able to change the Content Descriptor field in lyrics metadata.  A stand out of Kid3 is the ability to display the contents of ID3v1/v2 APE tags in one view (all 3 if present), while allowing separate editing of each in its own window;  will also alert to standards violations in many cases.