Thought I’d throw out a quick post while I was doing some searching for “best practices” in FLAC image extraction of audio CD’s for backup purposes. Basically follow this guy’s instructions:
In EAC you’ll click the “Actions > Extract Image + Cue Sheet > Compressed” function using your basic FLAC settings. Also be sure to enable Accurate Rip and do the automatic detection on all the drive settings. Save a .log file. There should be three files upon final output: the FLAC image, the CUE sheet, and the .LOG. That’s it. Simple is as simple does. If you feel like embedding the CUE sheet in the FLAC you can use Foobar2000 to do such, know however that it’s non-standard as far as burning back out. Apparently it’s always handy to have a separate CUE sheet. Good to know.
UPDATE: So, two things I realized. One: XLD (X Lossless Decoder) for OS X does pretty much the same thing as EAC. However, if you’re still hell bent on using EAC and XP (couldn’t get EAC to go under Darwine) it’s important to know that it won’t easily embed cuesheets (.cue sheets) automatically as XLD does. Embedded cuesheets do make life a little easier as your playback software can look at either the .cue or the .flac file and see all the tracks from the single disc rip.
To embed a .cue using Foobar2000 right click on the .flac image file select “Utils > Edit cuesheet” a window will pop up, check “Embed cuesheet” and then “Load .cue file” from your extraction directory, click “OK” to save. Bingo bango. XLD can do this automatically. I really cannot say which is better per data integrity, YMMV. Obviously if you’re running Windows EAC is a “reference” standard.
Album art is another grey area as either the %Album Name%.jpg or simply “cover.jpg” can be used inside the album folder. Also, what about album dates? Certainly, we can agree that the album’s original release date is the important date here in metadata, and per genre conventions I tend to trust MusicBrainz. For a good read I really liked Daniel Stout’s article about simplifying down to 25 main “top level” genres and tagging comments/notes metadata with sub-genres. The moral here is you should read up as much as you can. Either EAC or XLD will do fine with rips to backup your audio CDs. Cover art and sub-genre notes I’m going to have to keep exploring.