Yet Another Cycling Forum

General Category => The Knowledge => Ctrl-Alt-Del => Topic started by: Redjeep! on January 04, 2020, 05:18:11 pm

Title: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: Redjeep! on January 04, 2020, 05:18:11 pm
I need to write 3 MP3 files onto a CD so that they can be played at a funeral this week. The funeral parlour can only deal with CDs and no other digital formats such as MP3 or flac etc.

I've written the mp3's as music files onto a writable CD using Exact Audio Controller (EAC) and the resultant CD plays okay in my car cd player and a small portable player, but my main 'hifi' player, which is fairly high quality but old, won't recognise it.

The discs I've used were also old, but obviously unused, and are green rather than silver.

I'm worried that the cd won't play correctly at the funeral. Is there anything else I could do ? I haven't done this in 15 or 20 years and was wondering if you can now get better quality writable discs that are guaranteed to work.

It's important to me that this works. I don't want to be messing around at the funeral with an MP3 player if I can avoid it.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: hellymedic on January 04, 2020, 05:36:30 pm
Given how dodgy and temperamental obsolescent technology can be with untried gadgets, is there ANY chance you can try out your CD with the funeral director or Chapel?
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: PaulF on January 04, 2020, 05:36:58 pm
Exactly what format have you converted to?

Some more modern players will read mp3 and wav files. But your older hifi may not.

I’m not familiar with EAC; could you try a different program such as iTunes?
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: Ham on January 04, 2020, 05:58:44 pm
What does it show up as in Explorer? Is it a CD ROM or RW you are using?
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: Redjeep! on January 04, 2020, 06:02:55 pm
Thanks both.

I've posted a copy of the CD to the funeral directors, but the problem is that they may not get it in time as I don't live in the UK. If I need to I can probably play it on another cd player but this would involve bringing another one hooking it up and making sure that the funeral staff know how to use it. It would be far easier if they could just take mp3's but that doesn't seem to be possible.

The files are written as whatever format CDs are, they're not MP3 or flac or anything. I  think that its the writable CDs. I've had compatiblity issues with them before in some cd players and was wondering if there's any way to make up a cds that look like commercial ones ( is silver not green).
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: Redjeep! on January 04, 2020, 06:04:34 pm
The discs are Memorex CD -R's but are at least 15 years old.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: road-runner on January 04, 2020, 06:07:59 pm
An audio CD needs to be written to Red Book standard otherwise it will be just a data CD with audio files.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: Ham on January 04, 2020, 06:10:10 pm
If it's any help I'd be happy to have a go on a CD here and post it, pm if that's useful.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: DaveReading on January 04, 2020, 06:25:04 pm
Windows Media Player will do what you want.

The secret is that before you start burning the CD, you need to tell Media Player that you want to make an Audio CD and not a Data CD, using the "Burn Options" pulldown menu on the Burn tab.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: Redjeep! on January 04, 2020, 06:34:02 pm
If it's any help I'd be happy to have a go on a CD here and post it, pm if that's useful.

Thanks Ham, that's very kind of you. I'll get back to you if I need it.

I've just tried the CD in an old portable unit that I found (Sony Walkman size) and it works perfectly so so far it's just my hifi player that has problems (which is a Roksan Caspian). Looking around on Google suggests that it's common enough on some older players as the discs are less reflective than commercially made discs and so some players can't read them.

The file format etc must all be okay as they play perfectly in 3 of the 4 cd players I've tried so far.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: Redjeep! on January 04, 2020, 06:59:47 pm
Windows Media Player will do what you want.

The secret is that before you start burning the CD, you need to tell Media Player that you want to make an Audio CD and not a Data CD, using the "Burn Options" pulldown menu on the Burn tab.

Thanks Dave. I've just burned another CD on WMP rather than EAC and it's the same. It plays perfectly on every CD player that I can find except my high end one. I'd say it's probably a player problem rather than a disc or a file issue. I'll take my Walkman with me just in case and get somebody to bring a boombox as well. I don't know what sort of sound system they have in the crematorium, but would guess it's just a boombox of some type rather than a full PA.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: hellymedic on January 04, 2020, 08:12:03 pm
The last crematorium I attended had fairly powerful hard-wired speakers, as I imagine most similar places will have.
They have to accommodate crowds and softly-spoken speakers, as well as playing a huge variety of music and musical genres of HUGELY differing intensities.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: SteveC on January 04, 2020, 08:22:34 pm
I would suspect your player. Our last 'hi-fi' (it wasn't very hi) with a dedicated CD drive had problems with CD-Rs. The particular one I'm thinking of has played fine on everything else I've tried it with.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: Redjeep! on January 04, 2020, 08:30:05 pm
I'll speak to the funeral directors on Monday and see what they have to say. I've posted them a CD but will also bring a couple of copies with me. If they say that I can plug in another player then I'll bring along the Walkman CD player just in case.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: Kim on January 04, 2020, 11:53:29 pm
I've written the mp3's as music files onto a writable CD using Exact Audio Controller (EAC) and the resultant CD plays okay in my car cd player and a small portable player, but my main 'hifi' player, which is fairly high quality but old, won't recognise it.

Sounds like you've made a data CD of MP3 files, not an audio CD.

Look for an audio-specific option in your CD burning software.  It may require uncompressed 16-bit 44.1kHz WAV files as an input.

Additionally, many older audio-only CD mechanisms can only read pressed discs.  Writeable and re-writable ones simply don't work, even if the content is in the right format.  Frustratingly, the higher-end ones seem to be worse, in this respect.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: PeteB99 on January 05, 2020, 02:09:14 pm
Might be stating the obvious but have you checked with the Crem that they will accept copied CDs? When we did my brothers funeral about 8 years ago the Crem would only play original CDs, allegedly for copyright reasons.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: DaveReading on January 05, 2020, 03:34:04 pm
I've written the mp3's as music files onto a writable CD using Exact Audio Controller (EAC) and the resultant CD plays okay in my car cd player and a small portable player, but my main 'hifi' player, which is fairly high quality but old, won't recognise it.

Sounds like you've made a data CD of MP3 files, not an audio CD.

Look for an audio-specific option in your CD burning software.  It may require uncompressed 16-bit 44.1kHz WAV files as an input.

Additionally, many older audio-only CD mechanisms can only read pressed discs.  Writeable and re-writable ones simply don't work, even if the content is in the right format.  Frustratingly, the higher-end ones seem to be worse, in this respect.

Good explanation of the difference between an audio disc and one full of MP3s here:  https://www.howtogeek.com/322676/why-can-i-only-burn-80-minutes-of-music-to-a-cd-if-my-mp3s-take-up-less-than-700mb-of-space/
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: ian on January 06, 2020, 09:37:34 am
As said, audio 'red book' CDs are different from data CDs. I expect you need the former. Most burner-type programs will let you create either from source files including mp3.

Writable and re-writable discs have limited and variable shelf-life, the dyes they use gradually fade, more so if exposed to light, variable temperature and/or humidity. Once they reach a certain point, audio players which lack the error compensation mechanisms of computer drives will start to ignore them.

You ought to be able to plug in another device via the line-in.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: phil w on January 07, 2020, 08:06:21 pm
Have you finalised the disc as a last step?

https://www.cdrom2go.com/how-to-finalize-a-disc
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: Redjeep! on January 10, 2020, 10:46:00 pm
I just wanted to wrap this up to say that in the end it all worked perfectly, and the funeral which was today, went very smoothly.

Thank you everyone, this was causing me a huge amount of stress for a while as the thought of it not working properly on the day was inconceivable.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: DaveReading on January 11, 2020, 10:17:30 pm
Good to see that everything worked out.

I had a similar challenge a couple of months ago when my sister-in-law died. She had been an avid Kenneth McKellar fan and told us that she wanted his rendition of Nessun Dorma (which isn't at all bad) at her funeral.  It took ages to find out that it only existed on a 1963 long-playing record and even longer to lay our hands on one.

Eventually I found a copy and borrowed a USB turntable so that I could rip it to an MP3 file and thence to an audio CD. Worked perfectly at the funeral.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: pcolbeck on January 17, 2020, 09:43:03 am
I had the same thing at my Dad's funeral in September. Wrote the music to CDRW three times just in case then ran round trying them in every CD player I could find (boom box in that attic that hadn't been used for years), HiFi, Sony CD Walkman form the back of the cupboard of old stuff and the car that still has a CD player. Like you I was paranoid that it wouldn't play at the service.
Was fine in the end.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: caerau on January 17, 2020, 09:50:19 am
Probably a conversation for another thread, but given the prices funeral directors charge, perhaps they should drag themselves into the 21st century on this sort of thing  ::-)


Hope the funeral goes as it should.  :-)
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: pcolbeck on January 17, 2020, 11:29:01 am
Probably a conversation for another thread, but given the prices funeral directors charge, perhaps they should drag themselves into the 21st century on this sort of thing  ::-)

Its not the funeral directors that handle this though its the venue (church, crematory etc). I talked to the chapel we used and their setup had a line in so they could use a phone or an MP3 player or whatever. This issue was more that they all have different user interfaces and applications to play music plus they tend to lock if idle for a few minutes. CDs are less likely to be a problem as you put the tracks on them in the correct order for the service sheet and the operator just presses play and pause or next at the right moment.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: chrisbainbridge on January 17, 2020, 12:44:09 pm
Also they are all subject to performing rights act
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: Kim on January 17, 2020, 12:52:45 pm
Ugh, the thought of doing any public playout from a phone.  You just know it's going to get a call or notify of a calendar item or something else you've forgotten to disable sounds for at the worst moment.

Laptops are bad enough, but have the redeeming feature of being quite good at rapid-fire, looping and overlapping sound effects.  Not really relevant for a funeral.

A CD and player combination that's been tested is generally trustworthy, and reasonably immune to user confusion.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: ian on January 17, 2020, 01:05:45 pm
Bring back the ghetto blasta, that's what I say. A C90, a small mountain of D cells, and a potential outbreak of white-boy breakdancing.

(My iphone silences notifications and calls if I'm listening to tunes, they only show on-screen. I thought that was normal. There's probably a setting.)
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: Robh on January 17, 2020, 11:48:28 pm
I did the music today for my mother-in-law’s funeral. I was seriously stressed out at the thought of it going wrong. This was not helped by a track listing that stretched from Dexy’s to the Birdie song, with a lot of ABBA, a sprinkling of Rod, a dash of Agadoo, a bit of Patsy Cline on the side, and a couple of Irish reels to even things out a little. And Spirit In The Sky. It went well. Technology involved was an iPod and a pair of Bose computer speakers. I needed a very large drink when it was all done. Goodnight Eileen.
Title: Re: Writable CDs not Working - Help
Post by: road-runner on January 18, 2020, 07:58:13 am
... a track listing that stretched from Dexy’s ... Goodnight Eileen.

Of course!

... a dash of Agadoo ...

That I was not expecting.

Glad it all went well, Robh, including the very large drink.