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I set the .mp3 quality to 192 kbps which is the highest that iTunes will allow and I wont be able to test the performance of the client remotely until I return to work on Monday. Can you recommend any best practices for the encoding rate?
Set the bit rate as high as possible. If you use something other than iTunes you can encode MP3’s at 320kbps.
As you want to stream your music to work, you will have to find a happy compromise for the bit rate. You want it low enough that you don’t get dropouts but high enough so that your music doesn’t sound more like noise.
A good option here is variable bit rate MP3’s
One final issue, which may be slightly off-topic… when I changed from .m4a to .mp3 I noticed that the album art did not download for the album. I know the art is available as this album existed in my iTunes collection, I just deleted the .m4a version and re-imported it in .mp3. I did some research and found out that you can just go to Amazon and download the image from the website and attach it that way. That worked good for iTunes except that when I use the Java Firefly client the artwork wont appear. Still more research and I found out that I need to imbed the album art in each song?
Don’t embed the album art, it will cause Firefly to crash.
Place album art as a .jpg in the same folder as the album. Most library management software will find the album art and Firefly will just ignore it
I found http://www.fixtunes.com/ on the web, is this a solution?
There’s lots of software out there. What matters is “does it work for you”
I use dBpoweramp for ripping & MediaMonkey for library management.
My main library is in FLAC format but i have a duplicate in VBR MP3 (Lame) encoded at around 120kbps for use in the car.