REACT 2 Makes Ripping Easy

December 16, 2006

Got a bunch of audio CDs lying around that could use some ripping? Just got an mp3 player and need to load it with music? Want to preserve your audio collection in digital format? Well, if you said “Yes” to any of the above, you’re in luck.

This will be a very high level guide on how to rip your audio CDs into mp3 files. Here’s how:

  1. Download and install Exact Audio Copy (EAC)
  2. Configure EAC for secure ripping by following the Hydrogenaudio Wiki: EAC Drive Configuration
  3. Download and install REACT 2.0
  4. Set directory location and other variables in the REACT 2.0 configuration files (Personally, I use the lame mp3 -V4 switch for Variable Bit Rates around 165 kbit/sec or -V2 for classical/orchestral/opera music. Make your own decision at List of Recommended LAME settings)
  5. Start REACT 2 and go thru the wizard to configure for use with EAC
  6. Put in an audio CD and hit ‘ALT+G’ to get the cd information from FreeDB.
  7. Hit ‘F10’ and you’ll have a lossless cd image plus tracks ripped to MP3.

That’s it.. Bear in mind, I glossed over A LOT of details, but you get the general idea. For a more in depth guide with pictures, check out Teqnilogik’s EAC guide (Note, not all steps are necessary if you’re using REACT).

Alternatively, you could just download Apple iTunes and configure iTunes settings for importing audio CDs. If going the iTunes route, I’d recommend ripping to 192 VBR AAC files.

Now, you might be thinking to yourself, why go thru all the trouble of using EAC/REACT when iTunes could do it all for you. Well, there are a couple of reasons for this:

  1. EAC’s secure ripping rocks! You got little progress bars where you can see errors being corrected and everything
  2. REACT is configured to create BOTH lossless CD images and lossy track files in one swoop.
  3. REACT/EAC can use the LAME mp3 encoder which is the bomb diggity over iTunes mp3 encoder
  4. Using EAC/REACT is just another outlet where I can geek-out a bit.

There you have it. Give it a shot and have some fun. I ripped about 300 Audio CDs down to about 30G of data. I keep the originals in a big binder hidden away and jam on tunes via my iPod or computer.


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