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#379074 - 06/25/12 08:33 PM Converting FLACs...
MarkSJohnson Online   happy
shareholder in the making

Registered: 09/27/04
Posts: 10856
Loc: Central NH
I've never done anything with FLAC files before. It's always .WAVs for recording/editing and 320kbit/s MP3s for wide-compatibility playback.

So tonight I downloaded FLAC files from a Gov't Mule concert I attended the other night, and I was surprised that the compatibility for playback / conversion is so low. It seems like so many of you use FLACs for everything.

I couldn't even open them in Sony SoundForge or Adobe Soundbooth... my two "go-to" programs for sound editing, and Windows Media Player wouldn't play them.

So, I Googled convertors, and WINAMP came up. "Hey...I recognize that name from posts on the Axiom forums...I'll download that!". Well, now that I have, I can't find any way to convert the files (though I've achieved playback). F1 ain't no Effin' help.

Am I missing something with WINAMP, or do those of you that do conversions use something else?

I don't mind paying for software, but this is the first and probably the last time I'll be doing anything with FLAC files and I don't really want to pay $100 or even $30 to convert this one concert...

Any help appreciated...
_________________________
::::::: No disrespect to Axiom, but my favorite woofer is my yellow lab :::::::

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#379076 - 06/25/12 08:45 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
MarkSJohnson Online   happy
shareholder in the making

Registered: 09/27/04
Posts: 10856
Loc: Central NH
The plot thickens....

Windows Media Encoder won't touch it, and though the specs for Sounforge lists FLAC files as compatible, it definitely won't open these.

Methinks these files have DRM crap attached...
_________________________
::::::: No disrespect to Axiom, but my favorite woofer is my yellow lab :::::::

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#379077 - 06/25/12 09:00 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
tomtuttle Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/20/03
Posts: 8280
Loc: Tacoma
Could be. Where did you get them? Were they Archive.org or paid?

I'm surprised, though. I didn't think FLAC had DRM capability.

Are you trying to go to WAV or to MP3?

You could try to download something (like, oh I don't know, Grace Potter?) from Archive.org and see if your current method gives you different results with different files.

Audacity? Foobar?

I am interested in what happens next.
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#379078 - 06/25/12 09:08 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
MarkSJohnson Online   happy
shareholder in the making

Registered: 09/27/04
Posts: 10856
Loc: Central NH
Never mind. I found instructions for converting FLAC files to WAVs with WINAMP.

It's just not at all intuitive. I was looking for something that made sense... Like File--> Convert File.

Stupid me.

Either way, they're converted to WAVs where I can now re-EQ them a bit, burn CDs, convert to MP3s, etc.

Thanks for looking out for me though, Tom. My patience is not in abundance of late.
_________________________
::::::: No disrespect to Axiom, but my favorite woofer is my yellow lab :::::::

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#379080 - 06/25/12 09:15 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
Socketman Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/12/09
Posts: 1183
Loc: Whitehorse YT
I recomment dbpoweramp. Not all converters are created equal,and this is one of the best.
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#379081 - 06/25/12 09:26 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: Socketman]
CV Offline
Founder, Axiom Upgrade Club
shareholder in the making

Registered: 07/20/06
Posts: 11170
Loc: Richland, WA, USA
Originally Posted By: Socketman
I recomment dbpoweramp. Not all converters are created equal,and this is one of the best.


I use Easy CD-DA Extractor almost 100% of the time, but back when I had to convert my whole music library, dBpoweramp was the ticket.

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#379087 - 06/25/12 11:35 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
terzaghi Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 04/04/07
Posts: 4848
Loc: Tulsa, Oklahoma
I use dbpower amp as well and like it a lot
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#379088 - 06/25/12 11:41 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
INANE Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/04/04
Posts: 1660
Loc: Omaha, Nebraska
I use EAC for secure ripping to FLAC, it's free and well respected. I'm not sure if it could convert FLAC back to WAV thou.
_________________________
-Ben
HT v2.0 !
HT v1.0

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#379092 - 06/26/12 12:16 AM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
ClubNeon Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/06/09
Posts: 3448
Loc: Western Maryland, USA
I use "flac.exe -d" to turn FLACs back into waves. smile
_________________________
Pioneer VSX-1018AH-K, PDP-5020FD, DV-79AVi
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#379106 - 06/26/12 01:57 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
Murph Offline
axiomite

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 6780
Loc: PEI, Canada
Hey Mark,

Do you need to edit them or just play them?
Winamp and Foobar will play .flac files no problem as will others probably mentioned.

For conversion to wav or MP3 I use EAC as well. It's not intuitive but it's powerful and it's accu-rip feature has saved my ass on fixing up some scratched CDs I tried to rip. (It can get small sections of missing bytes from a huge library of CDs that other acu-rip users already ripped.)

I also tried dbpoweramp until it's free trial ran out. It worked well and is much more intuitive to use but since I already had EAC configured to be simple for me, I saw no need to pay for another program.

Like many here, I keep dual libraries. FLAC for home use and MP3 for portable devices.

Edit:
OK, I just read where you did want to play with the originals so you can ignore my first question.


Edited by Murph (06/26/12 01:59 PM)
_________________________
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#379136 - 06/27/12 09:55 AM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
cb919 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/17/09
Posts: 1041
Loc: Ottawa, Canada
Hi Mark,
I'm probably too late for you on this, but here's what I do since I use FLAC files whenever possible:

Ripping from CD - I use EAC and I have 2 profiles stored, 1 for MP3 and 1 for FLAC. I always rip to FLAC and optionally do a 2nd rip to MP3.

Converting FLAC to MP3 - If I need to convert something to MP3 that I've already ripped to FLAC but am too lazy to pull the CD to re-rip I use the Winamp method that you have discovered. Because this is a pain to remember how to reconfigure all the time, I leave Winamp configured to do the conversion, but then use MediaMonkey, VLC etc... for my audio playback needs.

My situation may be unique however in that when I am home I (almost) exclusively use my Sonos system for playback of audio, and the MediaMonkey, VLC or others are used on my work laptop for travel purposes only, so that is more of a floating mobile library. My core complete library resides on my NAS in FLAC for Sonos distribution.

Cheers,
_________________________
Dan
In/On Wall 500 w M2 Center Channel

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#379144 - 06/27/12 12:16 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
Murph Offline
axiomite

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 6780
Loc: PEI, Canada
Forgot to mention, Foobar also does Flac to MP3 conversion and it is free. Took me forever to find the option though. I searched the menus for a long time before realizing that I just had to right click on the highlighted tracks to get a conversion option.
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#379187 - 06/27/12 09:36 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
INANE Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/04/04
Posts: 1660
Loc: Omaha, Nebraska
I basically followed the steps on this site to get FLAC working in my Media Center HTPC. I'm sure that it would help anyone get flac working on a windows computer.

http://www.hack7mc.com/2009/01/playing-flac-files-in-media-center.html
_________________________
-Ben
HT v2.0 !
HT v1.0

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#379216 - 06/28/12 07:53 AM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
Murph Offline
axiomite

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 6780
Loc: PEI, Canada
Another free alternative to Media Center is XBMC. It has native flac support and some nice customization features so you can have different visual library interface styles for say your TV library vs. your movie library. Open Source, so lots of add ons.

I'm not saying it's better, just presenting an alternative.
_________________________
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#379683 - 07/06/12 04:33 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: Murph]
cb919 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/17/09
Posts: 1041
Loc: Ottawa, Canada
Hey guys, i ran into a new conversion task I have not done before. I have several concert discs that I enjoy in my HT, but do not have the CD equivalent to enjoy in the car. Yes my car is old school and I can either play audio only CD's (not MP3's on CD).... or cassette tapes!

What can I use to rip either DVD or BR but just output a 2 channel audio track list for making an audio CD? All suggestions are appreciated. I have both Mac and Windows XP systems available to work on.

Thanks!
_________________________
Dan
In/On Wall 500 w M2 Center Channel

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#379797 - 07/09/12 07:22 AM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
Murph Offline
axiomite

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 6780
Loc: PEI, Canada
I did this a couple of years ago. It involved several programs and a lot of complexity, failures and do-overs then finally success. I think I quit after the first one.

I'm sure there is probably a much more streamlined app to do it now. Sorry, but I can't recall the steps I took with the older method although I know I created a text file somewhere on my PC if all else fails. I'm betting it is easier now anyway..
_________________________
With great power comes Awesome irresponsibility.

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#379803 - 07/09/12 12:40 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
tomtuttle Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/20/03
Posts: 8280
Loc: Tacoma
My experience was EXACTLY like Murph's. My brain is now trying to protect me by forgetting the particulars. Seems like VLC and/or Handbrake might have been in there, somewhere. I was working with only DVD, not BR.

While it obviously doesn't help you, it was nice to note that the industry seems to recognize this issue; when I bought the Adele concert Blu-Ray, it came with a digital audio download or the performance.
_________________________
bibere usque ad hilaritatem

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#379804 - 07/09/12 12:52 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: tomtuttle]
cb919 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/17/09
Posts: 1041
Loc: Ottawa, Canada
Thanks guys,
I could not seem to find the right search term that came up with a good (free) solution. Tom when you mentioned VLC I tried changing my search to include that and voila , I found the instructions I needed. I have not tried it yet, but will later this week.

Thanks, your comments gave the breadcrumbs I needed.
_________________________
Dan
In/On Wall 500 w M2 Center Channel

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#379805 - 07/09/12 01:00 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
MarkSJohnson Online   happy
shareholder in the making

Registered: 09/27/04
Posts: 10856
Loc: Central NH
Tom send some bread my way!
_________________________
::::::: No disrespect to Axiom, but my favorite woofer is my yellow lab :::::::

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#379806 - 07/09/12 01:49 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
tomtuttle Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/20/03
Posts: 8280
Loc: Tacoma
Oh, Mark, you KNOW there is all kinds of stuff headed your way.

Dan, let us know how it goes. If you have success and keep your sanity, I might be interested in giving it another go on a couple disks.

Not surprisingly, I remember tagging being pretty much full-manual. I still use MP3tag. I wish my library looked a little cleaner; keeping BOTH the flac and mp3 versions updated has proven to be quite uninteresting work.
_________________________
bibere usque ad hilaritatem

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#379807 - 07/09/12 01:52 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
Ken.C Online   content
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17754
Loc: NoVA
I just spent a significant part of the weekend manually cleaning up my iTunes library in preparation for turning on Match. Gnh. Good thing I, for some godforsaken reason, kind of enjoy that sort of thing.
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I didn't do it, no one saw me, you can't prove anything.

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#379808 - 07/09/12 02:19 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: Ken.C]
cb919 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/17/09
Posts: 1041
Loc: Ottawa, Canada
What is Match?
_________________________
Dan
In/On Wall 500 w M2 Center Channel

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#379809 - 07/09/12 02:22 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
Ken.C Online   content
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17754
Loc: NoVA
iTunes Match, basically Apple will give you 256k AACs on their storage for anything you've got above 96k, up to 10000 songs. $25/yr. You upload anything they don't have to your space on their cloud, then you get access to it from up to 10 devices, without having to use a ton of local storage.
_________________________
I didn't do it, no one saw me, you can't prove anything.

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#379811 - 07/09/12 03:04 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: MarkSJohnson]
Murph Offline
axiomite

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 6780
Loc: PEI, Canada
Then they sell your inventory listing to the piracy police.


Kidding! I hope.
_________________________
With great power comes Awesome irresponsibility.

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#379812 - 07/09/12 03:12 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: cb919]
Kruncher Offline
devotee

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 484
Loc: Maple Ridge, BC
Originally Posted By: cb919
and voila, I found the instructions I needed.


Good find Dan. I had been using VLC 0.8.6, so this was good info about a useful upgrade. Unfortunately, the result is a bit of a mixed bag - at least on my system.

Yes, it does what it claims to do: convert DVD audio to MP3/WAV, what have you (even FLAC!). Just be very careful about getting the settings EXACTLY the same as the demo screenshots. I tried creating both MP3 and WAV demo files, which played back perfectly using JetAudio. So that's good.

The problem: VLC doesn't stop at the end of the track that you want. Instead it carries on to the end of the DVD if you let it. You must click the Stop button to terminate the streaming (ripping) at the end of the track, so it helps to know the time position in advance of ripping the track, otherwise you'll be looking to do editing with something like Audacity (though that might be easier in the end: rip the whole DVD as one track and slice and dice it into tracks with Audacity).

Thanks again for pointing out this info Dan.

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#379816 - 07/09/12 03:44 PM Re: Converting FLACs... [Re: Kruncher]
cb919 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/17/09
Posts: 1041
Loc: Ottawa, Canada
Oh, good info Kruncher - I thought VLC would break it up into tracks for you if selected the individual titles. I had also forgotten about Audacity - I think you just saved me some time there.

I'll report back with my results when I get around to doing this.

Also FWIW, I could not find an audio only extraction option in Handbrake. I'd be very happy to be proven wrong if someone knows better the intricacies of Handbrake.
_________________________
Dan
In/On Wall 500 w M2 Center Channel

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#384192 - 10/15/12 02:57 PM Audio Extraction from DVD [Re: Kruncher]
cb919 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/17/09
Posts: 1041
Loc: Ottawa, Canada
Update and help needed on this!

Update - i have tried unsuccessfully several times to rip a particular DVD (Porcupine Tree - Anesthetize) to an audio CD so I can enjoy this in the car. When I rip using VLC (v2.02) using the guide I found in the earlier post, it does not seem to work. The conversion seems to switch to a 2nd track and just keeps repeating making the file size get bigger and bigger and never completes. So I manually stop VLC but the resultant file either does not play or has no audio encoded in it.

Help - Any other suggestions on this? I am willing to pay for software that will do this, but would appreciate if anybody has a recommendation.

Cheers,
_________________________
Dan
In/On Wall 500 w M2 Center Channel

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#384193 - 10/15/12 03:05 PM Re: Audio Extraction from DVD [Re: MarkSJohnson]
J. B. Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/19/11
Posts: 1265
Loc: Quebec, Canada
do you want to compress the movie so it will fit on a CD or
do you want to extract the audio from the movie and burn it to CD ?
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#384194 - 10/15/12 03:08 PM Re: Audio Extraction from DVD [Re: J. B.]
cb919 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/17/09
Posts: 1041
Loc: Ottawa, Canada
Hi JB, I want to extract the 2 channel stereo audio track from the DVD movie to an audio CD so I can listen in the car. No 'lossy' compression needed - ideally I would rip to FLAC (though wav is OK too).


Edited by cb919 (10/15/12 03:25 PM)
Edit Reason: flac is compression!
_________________________
Dan
In/On Wall 500 w M2 Center Channel

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#384195 - 10/15/12 03:25 PM Re: Audio Extraction from DVD [Re: MarkSJohnson]
J. B. Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/19/11
Posts: 1265
Loc: Quebec, Canada
have a look at Movavi video converter:
i got version 11 and it seems to have audio rip.
version 12 is now out, you should have a look there:
www.movavi.com


Edited by J. B. (10/15/12 03:26 PM)
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#384274 - 10/17/12 07:16 PM Re: Audio Extraction from DVD [Re: J. B.]
cb919 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/17/09
Posts: 1041
Loc: Ottawa, Canada
Movavi apparently does the job as well as 'Switch audio File Converter'. However before I decided to buy one of these I finally found a free way of doing this - a bit long but works:

1 - use handbrake to rip the DVD into MP4 format on my WXP machine, keep the audio uncompressed (would you believe I thought Handbrake was Mac only? What a moron I am ! whistle )

2 - use Audacity and load the MP4 rip (need to install the FFMpeg library)

3 - optional - cut the track into chapters if desired

4 - export the file(s) in AIFF

5 - use iTunes to open file(s), add to playlist and burn to audio CD

Steps 4 & 5 can of course be altered for whatever format/CD burning software you will use.

Whew - I can now listen to Porcupine Tree in the car on the drive back home from Montreal tonight! I am celebrating the little victories after a long, crappy day at work.
_________________________
Dan
In/On Wall 500 w M2 Center Channel

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#384276 - 10/17/12 07:52 PM Re: Audio Extraction from DVD [Re: cb919]
Kruncher Offline
devotee

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 484
Loc: Maple Ridge, BC
Mission accomplished! Well done. Shame that it takes so much effort, but now we know of a successful method. Thanks for sharing.

Good choice too. Do you have Deadwing? I really enjoy that one on DVD-A.

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#384277 - 10/17/12 08:05 PM Re: Audio Extraction from DVD [Re: Kruncher]
cb919 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/17/09
Posts: 1041
Loc: Ottawa, Canada
Rock_Head - a fellow Axiomoe from BC - got me going on Porcupine Tree. I have listened to much of their work through Slacker but only own the one concert disc so far. However last night I pre-ordered the new special edition Octane Twisted coming out in November - an early Bday present to myself.

Now heading for the car with my freshly burned CD's in hand - blown old Volvo car speakers, here I come!!!!! grin
_________________________
Dan
In/On Wall 500 w M2 Center Channel

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#384304 - 10/18/12 06:51 AM Re: Audio Extraction from DVD [Re: MarkSJohnson]
J. B. Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/19/11
Posts: 1265
Loc: Quebec, Canada
Try this one:
http://www.avs4you.com/AVS-Audio-Converter.aspx

i tried ripping the sound from an AVI movie i have, and it does work, and very fast.
the ripping converts the audio file to the format of your choice.

by the way, i use their converters quite often and find they work very well and fast.
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#384305 - 10/18/12 07:42 AM Re: Audio Extraction from DVD [Re: MarkSJohnson]
J. B. Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/19/11
Posts: 1265
Loc: Quebec, Canada
i just tried ripping a full length movie (vob files) to FLAC with their audio converter.
the whole thing took about 3 mins. and used my processor's 4 cores to do it.
it appears that the program can convert to about 9 audio formats.

it's extremely simple to do too.


Edited by J. B. (10/18/12 07:56 AM)
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#384329 - 10/18/12 01:20 PM Re: Audio Extraction from DVD [Re: J. B.]
cb919 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/17/09
Posts: 1041
Loc: Ottawa, Canada
Great info, thanks JB. Did it give you one big audio track or can it separate into the chapters for you, so you can skip back or forward on a CD player?
_________________________
Dan
In/On Wall 500 w M2 Center Channel

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#384334 - 10/18/12 02:42 PM Re: Audio Extraction from DVD [Re: MarkSJohnson]
J. B. Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/19/11
Posts: 1265
Loc: Quebec, Canada
normally, it gives you a separate audio track for each original file, but there is a button to push is you want the program to make "one big file".
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#384364 - 10/19/12 05:52 AM Re: Audio Extraction from DVD [Re: MarkSJohnson]
J. B. Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/19/11
Posts: 1265
Loc: Quebec, Canada
in case it's useful, the movie i ripped the sound from yesterday was "The Black Swan"; the resulting audio file in FLAC was 700 MB.
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