Upgrading music quality

Roon Core Machine

MacBook Pro 2019, Ram 16mb, Quad core, i7, 1.7ghz

Networking Gear & Setup Details

Connected Audio Devices

Sonos Port and Cambridge CXN V2

Number of Tracks in Library

16180 tracks

Description of Issue

I am new to Roon, moved music from Apple Music. All files are basically MP3 (low quality), and all new downloads are FLAC.

How do I convert my MP3 files to FLAC?

Do I just go to Qobuz or Tidal and download their versions? Delete lesser quality duplicates? What is the best way to do this?

Thank you.

Hi Robert you cannot convert MP3 to FLAC as MP3 is lossy and you cannot add that information back in.

You can rip FLAC from CDs or buy them at various sites (Bandcamp is great if you like supporting band’s directly).

You can also go through your library adding the albums to Qobuz and it will prefer those over the low quality ones in your library (you might also be able to use something like Soundiz to add them in Qobuz automatically, but I have not done this myself)

I made the mistake in the early 2000s of buying loads of MP3 albums and have been slowly replacing them with CD quality versions for those I really like.

eBay and Amazon are a source of cheap CDs for the ones you really like.

You don’t look that old.

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Jim,

Thanks for your suggestion. I did not care about sound quality until now. I will use quobuz to replace my mp3’s. I have still a couple hundred cd’s I can rip into FLAC, and be done with it. I enjoy the roon experience, thus I dont mind managing my music from here forward. Thanks again. Robert

Michael, I meant to thank you not Jim, but like Jim, I too bought mp3 files…oh well…

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You can link to Qobuz higher resolution files to stream in Roon or Adirvana, but if you want to download copies of the files to keep, you will need to buy them. Is that what you mean? You can also download files to play on your devices but you have to use the Qobuz app to play those. You are basically renting those files.

Here’s another consideration. Apple Music is now 100 percent lossless with many in high resolution and the rest in CD quality. I don’t know for sure, but you may be able to delete your lower quality files on Apple Music and replace them with the higher quality for free. You may want to look into that.

These, of course, would need to be files you purchased from Apple Music. I know for those of us who stream from Apple Music, we deleted any local Apple Music files to stream lossless files. These were files we were “renting” but had not purchased.

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Most of my music has been ripped from my cd collection, which I no lomnger have with exception of about 200. I will re-rip into FLAC.

If you gave away or sold the other cd’s, you are suppose to delete those files for copyright reasons. Those laws vary by country I suppose.

Just because Roon says so, it doesn’t mean all MP3s are low quality. I don’t have many, but I’m not going to replace them. Besides, I’m only carrying MP3 on my phone, or I wouldn’t be able to fit all my collection.

Ha ha it’s an old photo, but a youngish 54 soon :grin:

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Like @Marian says further down, not all mp3 files are bad. I have thousand which sound fine, but I also have bad one’s and they are the one’s I have been replacing.

Thanks to Marian and Michael: this is a good point! Will manage going forward, and not back track. Great inadvertent advice! Will save me a lot of time…

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It’s funny that MP3s sounded great when we had better hearing, but now when we’re older and our hearing has degraded, they’re not good enough.

Like so many things, it all depends…

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Had MP3 when i didnt care about the sound quality when i was young. Served the purpose well. 25 years later and a “audio” journey after, i use Qobuz. Used Tidal before but in my system i found the quality diference more obvious than i ever imagined.
Dont want to deal with HDDs/SSDs/NAS full of music anymore (and cds or lps) so streaming is the perfect option for me in home or on the go.
To be honest the only thing i cant go all digital is books. I tried but prefer hold the book and read in paper and see them in the stand.

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Always good to mix it up some, but I have not bought an MP3 in about 10 years (at least I tell myself that), portable headphones were bad in those days so you could not really tell what you were doing :grin:

While I like holding a physical book, kindles are great if you want to carry a Library with you :grin:. One holiday we had 28 books between us, the next holiday we had Kindles :joy_cat:

I still buy CDs, but mostly digital from Bandcamp to support the artists making music I like. I also like what Tidal is doing with premium subscribers payments to most streamed artists, I hope we see more of this.

So there are many ways to do it.
I was thinking about subscription to Qobuz sublime as well, as the discounts could be useful

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Discounts are only for hi-res. I don’t buy those, unless it’s the only version available. Happens with Bandcamp unfortunately.

This is true but I actually looked at 30 or so albums I wanted to buy (I’m also considering sublime) and with sublime, the high res was actually cheaper (vs CD) on average by £3 per album.

I don’t go for high res but if it’s cheaper than CD then why not.

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It’s for when I know I want the High resolution version, as you only know on Bandcamp after you bought it.

But it’s a challenge as I started buying off Bandcamp to better support artists.

:thinking:

Yes I put several back this morning to have a think about it :grin:

Didn’t stop me replacing some classic Gary Numan (have then at 180kb MP3) with 24/96 for cheaper than a CD. I listened to two albums last week and they sounded terrible so when I saw the sale this morning, who could blame me :roll_eyes: