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1000x1000 pixel album art, what is the best approach for your collection.
SamDeRe81
post Oct 23 2011, 22:42
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QUOTE (krafty @ Mar 26 2011, 17:14) *
I always go to albumartexchange.com to get my CD covers (followed an advice from someone here in the forum), because no matter what I do I can't get them scanned as perfect.
But I have been noticing that there has been a booming inscrease on average art size. The site started with 600 px, then 800 px, and now it's not uncommon to find your favourite cover with 1000px and way over 1MB, in a very perfect scanned way, of course.

In this situation, what to do?

Is it still a smart move to embed covers like this in your audio files?
I have heard that this may be a great disavantage for portable devices, which eventually choke with such huge art size. However this art size is not daunting to modern computing, as images do eventually need more resolution to look perfect, and computers are faster. Is it better to keep the 1000px in its own file "front.jpg" and leave the audio alone? Or perhaps embed 600px images and keep a higher resolution in the album directory? And where there are several tracks from several albums inside the same folder?

What do you guys think about this?


MusicBrainz Picard + Advanced Title Case Plugin + Do Not Preserve Tags = Perfect Metadata (IMO) which means - No Album art stored except inside the folder with the album. However I tend to let iTunes find any missing album covers because they're just as good as albumartexchange and Apple is a corporation that has access to original scans.

iTunes is easiest in order to retrieve album art, and it's possible to use scripts to embedd the album art across the files.
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Northpack
post Oct 24 2011, 09:37
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QUOTE (smok3 @ Aug 29 2011, 10:58) *
what would be wrong with '2000x2000 px folder.jpg' and '500x500 px each file has' it approach?

Album covers are usually offset printed at 300dpi. That makes aprox. 1400x1400dt. Considering the moiré effect, you have to reduce that resolution (dots to pixels) by at least 25% to get a clean scan, so there's no use at all in a resolution higher than 1000px.

This post has been edited by Northpack: Oct 24 2011, 09:45
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fukdup
post Oct 24 2011, 13:08
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I don't embed any images into flacs, and scan at 600dpi png. Might be a waste of space, but is just how i do it. I always make a cover.jpg from these images, at 500x500 and place this in folder with my tracks.

Edit - typo

This post has been edited by fukdup: Oct 24 2011, 13:09
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derty2
post Oct 24 2011, 20:24
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Some personal notes on processing artwork for viewing in foobar2000 on a desktop PC. I have no knowledge or interest in mobile/tablet computing.

I collect lossless music, and I manually curate my tags and filesystem and don't care for automated no-brainer solutions; I like learning.
I like to do things the manual way and I like to have full control of all steps of a task or process; I have a lot of patience.

I scan smaller things like CD covers at 400 DPI. I scan larger objects such as Vinyl LP covers at 300-400 DPI. The larger objects usually have larger text and details, so I try using 300 DPI first. I find with CD covers, 400 DPI is perfect for editing and archival purposes. CD covers are smaller in scale than Vinyl covers, thus fine details and text can be very small and hard to discern, so upping the DPI to 400 (rather than 300) allows me to zoom right in to the details for post-scan processing.

If the CD disc is silver or metallic, the scanned image tends to create rainbow artefacts; so in cases like this, I lay some very thin translucent paper between the Scanner glass and the CD disc (the Gamma and Contrast loss can be fixed later).

I fix moire artefacts in Photoshop CS3 and XnView. You can use Noise filters and Gaussian blurring and soft Resize algorithms for quick fixes, but to manually eliminate line screen artefacts in a professional way, you need to analyze the image using Fourier transformation tools. One such tool is "Michael Vinther Image Analyzer (freeware) ...with image loaded in "MVIA" go to menu: "Operations/Filters/Frequency domain filter".

Everything I have described up till now is for the purposes of archiving. I pack all the source files into a .RAR archive.
For creating artwork for my music folders, I edit the source files.

My workflow in XnView for creating artwork optimized for viewing in foobar2000:

- OPEN the source file from the .RAR archive.

- ZOOM the image smaller and discover what percentage I can resize it without losing the ability to read the finest text and details.

- CROP the image square if possible
// obviously for inlays I leave it rectangular ...but you can make it square too --> Image->Canvas size ...Place the image in the centre of the Grid ...Untick the checkbox "Keep ratio" ...Adjust the smaller pixel number of either Width or Height to be the same as the higher pixel number (in the case of inlays, it is obviously going to be the Height you will adjust) ...Choose background colour (more than likely White)

- RESIZE the image --always the the height, never the width, aspect ratio is auto-corrected-- to my previously discovered percentage, usually it's within the range of 900-1200 Pixels (height).
// I usually use the "Mitchell" algorithm for resizing; It produces a nice image for further processing and sharpening at the end of the workflow (see further down).
// I occasionally use the "Lanczos" filter, which is sharper, for blurred and damaged images; I don't use it often because I end up with more unwanted artefacts at the end of my workflow.

- Adjust GAMMA if necessary --> Image->Adjust->Brightness/Contrast/Gamma/Balance (Shift+E).

- Adjust LEVELS if necessary --> Image->Adjust->Levels (L).

- Fix NOISE if necessary, using third-party filter --> Filter->Adobe Photoshop Plug-In->Ximagic Denoiser MP (Ctrl+G) ...usually using either "CWT" "DCT" or "NLM" algorithms.
// "CWT" is good for salt and pepper noise in very old photographs but not much else
// "DCT" is very good but you may lose subtle details
// "NLM" is excellent but is not always the best solution.

- SHARPEN the image, using built-in filter --> Filter->Effects // I use one of these three... Enhance Detail - less strong | Enhance Edges - stronger | Enhance Focus - strongest.

- SAVE the Image with best possible optimization and compression, using third-party filter --> Filter->RIOT (Radical Image Optimization Tool, by Lucian Sabo).
// I am saving the art for viewing in foobar2000 ...so I save as JPEG ...Chroma subsampling: Medium (4:2:0) ...adjust the "Quality" slider to anything between 40-80 percent
// when saving the 'folder.jpg' (aka the front cover) I adjust the "Quality" slider so the size is NOT MORE THAN 200 KB (give or take 50 KB either way).
// I generally save the rest of the artwork images within the range of 200-300 KB (give or take 50 KB either way).
// Obviously, we will need to pull the "Quality" slider right down if we are saving a double page (aka booklet); if necessary resize a little smaller; go to the RIOT menu "Edit->Resample->Resampling Filter: Catmull-Rom", resizing the height by 50 pixels can dramatically reduce the size and allow quality at our magic save number of "200-300 KB (give or take 50 KB either way)".

So there you have it; a beautiful set of artwork images for displaying in foobar2000, each within a file size range of 150-350 KB, and resolution range of 900-1200 Pixels (height).

-- PS: I HATE embedded images, I aways delete them from the music files; In fact I hate embedded CUE, embedded LOG, embedded anything; all are removed.


This post has been edited by derty2: Oct 24 2011, 20:55
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audiologico
post Oct 30 2011, 22:34
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I did not know albumartexchange.com, really it is a nice website to find out cover arts smile.gif Thanks to share!
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pompon
post Nov 17 2011, 04:51
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The problem with cover on the net ... they have NEVER the good color.

To ensure good scanning it's to scan RAW (no automatic correction).
Once you have a RAW scan, you just do a correction in photoshop (macro) using the color balance.

For my scanner CanonScan Lide 200:
shadow: -20, -20, -20
mid tone : -24, -29, -31
highs : 18, 21, 1

This setup work on all picture.
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gritto
post May 26 2012, 11:16
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The OP mentioned albumartexchange.com as a good source for album art.

I checked it out and seemed to see only album COVERS, not the rest of the art.

I suppose I'm an oddball, but I like to have all the artwork for my digital music. I don't need to embed them in FLAC or have them show up in my music organizer necessarily. I just want to have an art folder in my album folders containing all art, and from there I can adjust as necessary. I do have some art, but not for all my music, and I don't really have time to do a lot of scanning

http://www.freecovers.net is a good source for all the art (you have to pay for high res images), but they don't have everything by a long shot.

I don't see any mention of CoverDude.com in this forum, but it seems to offer more than covers as well. I'm not sure if I trust them, however, because they claim to be working on the FAQ. They want money to give access to art that is not very low res, even if they include jewel case backs, inserts, etc. just like freecovers.net. But they don't mention the price. I hesitate to contact them.

So I'm wondering if anyone here has checked CoverDude out and can recommend them or otherwise. ;-)
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db1989
post May 26 2012, 11:20
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Just to add my opinion: although I’d really like if digital retailers included PDF booklets and such with all their downloads, at the moment, they don’t, and therefore I think those elements should only be available to people who buy them in the form in which they are offered. TL;DR: the lack of packaging with digital downloads isn’t my ideal, but isn’t it effectively piracy to circumvent it?

Edit: And, of course, sites who offer such materials’ charging the user for them is just adding insult to injury, sheer opportunism.

This post has been edited by db1989: May 26 2012, 11:22
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derty2
post Aug 17 2012, 21:51
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Here is a step-by-step tutorial, showing you how to create a perfect cover image from a photograph of a Vinyl LP cover using Photoshop:

(Note: In the tutorial, the cover image is being edited in MAC Photoshop, but WINDOWS users should follow along without too much trouble).

View the tutorial ----> (14 PNG vertical image stitch - 1801x17186 pixels - 4.8 MB)

This post has been edited by derty2: Aug 17 2012, 22:00
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