Ripping Classical Music To Mp3

Here is how to rip a classical CD to MP3 along with how to set all the necessary tags.

Software used

Step 1: Rip the CD

  1. I use CDex to rip the CD since it gives me more control of the mp3 quality settings.
  2. Set CDex to rip to a directory structure of %1\%2\%7 %4 or Artist\Title\Track Number Leading 0 Track Name
  3. Set the composer name in the Artist field.
  4. Set the name of the piece in the album field followed by the initials of the orchestra. (Thanks to tunequest for the idea.) This will keep different recordings of the same piece distinct. Use [BP] for Berliner Philharmoniker for example.
  5. Change the track offset so that the first piece is numbered 1 even if it is not the first track on the cd.
  6. Select only the parts of the piece and rip them together.
  7. Repeat for other compositions/composers on the same cd.

Step 2: Import into iTunes and tweak the tags

  1. Import the newly ripped songs into iTunes.
  2. Select all the songs belonging to one composer that you have just ripped.
  3. Set the Composer tag to the composer, which you can copy from the Artist field.
  4. Set the Artist field to the soloist or concert lead or conductor who performed the piece.
  5. Leave the Artist field set to the composer if there is no relevant performer.
  6. Add the name of the orchestra to the comments as well as any other relevant info.
  7. Repeat for the other composers on the cd.

The final results should look like this in iTunes:


The resulting folder structure will look like this:

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