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Transcoding FLAC into WMA LL w/ DRM, yeah, it sounds nuts
post Jul 10 2013, 06:41
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OK, what I am looking at here is a pretty unique issue I think.

I want to transcode my existing FLAC (that resides on my XBMC) into WM9 lossless, but it absolutely needs to be DRM'ed.

This is due to restrictions in the head unit of my vehicle. It plays MP3, AAC and WMA, but they all have drawbacks.

MP3 has occasional problems with embedded coverart images. Aside from that highest bitrate of 320kb/s every now and then skips. I have not found any pattern to close in on the problem, it also happens _sporadic_, meaning at times a track will skip or garble at 3:20, sometimes at 1:15 and then maybe not at all.

So I was going for WMA lossless. Now, here the problem is the head unit loads the file and then just skips on. It displays the WMA ID Tag data briefly and then just moves to the next file. It also reliably displays embedded cover art. After much digging I finally found the reason in the internal BMW head unit training manula - the CIC unit of this particular model years will only accept WMA files with copy protection applied.

I am not sure if there is a difference between full blown WMA DRM (which from what I gather is an encryption requireing a license key, much like a decryption key I assume) and just simple copy protection which is mentioned in the manual. This protection could just be a boolean flag in the metadata.

I am usually using dpoweramp for encoding/transcoding but I have nowhere found any option to "protect" the created WMA files.

Does anyone have any pointers= Does it really require to setup some kind of "vendor identity" and a corresponding certificate/license/decryption passkey etc. or is there a quick and dirty workaround to make WMA files appear to have CP?

I know it's a weird problem, but it kinda stinks to be stuck with 192kb MP3 which playback reliably... Any input would be appreciated.
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post Jul 10 2013, 12:49
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If you say your head unit accepts MP3, AAC and WMA but has issues with MP3 and WMA, why don't you use AAC for playback then?
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