This is the website of Scott Paul Robertson. I blog about various things (mainly programming) and have a nice project called Oggify which assists in managing collections of FLAC files with identical sets of Ogg Vorbis or MP3. Various information about the Sharp mm20, and other presentations I've done are also available.
Recent Blog Entries
So I don't post very often here anymore. I've determined that this is because I've allowed the focus of this blog to become very narrow.
Good blogs have a subject or general theme. I've tried to keep my posts focused, but it has become far constrained resulting in infrequent posting.
Because of this I'm putting the blog on hiatus until August. No posts, nothing. When it comes back I expect to have redesigned the site, done a major overhaul of the blogging engine, and decided on a broader theme that I will actually write about.
Until then, if you just can't survive without my quips and thoughts, check me out on twitter. You can just follow my RSS feed there if you're not interested in joining.
Album Sound Check - The GUI
A while ago you'll recall that I wrote a little Python script that would average out the sound check gain adjustment created by iTunes for a given set of songs.
I've gone a step farther and created a simple GUI tool for doing the same.
Album Sound Check (download link) provides a basic interface to editing this field based on the values in a given set of files.
After running the program go ahead and open a directory containing songs from your iTunes library. They will be scanned in and the gain dB adjustment values stored. ASC will then determine an average from this.
You can choose to not have certain songs affect the resulting average by unchecking the "Use" column. You can choose to not have the computed average applied to a given file by unchecking the "Apply" column.
Once you're ready just click "Apply" and ...
I've gone ahead and made an update to Oggify, pushing it to version 2.0.3. If you have version 2.0.1 or 2.0.2 you should really upgrade. They're a little bit (totally) broken.
Album Based Soundcheck
iTunes supports a feature called Sound Check. Similar to ReplyGain in other players, the goal is make songs playback at a similar volume. This is particularly useful with mixes, songs from various albums do not have jarring transitions. Since this computed on a song-by-song basis, different songs on a single album get different values. In some cases this creates a jarring experience while listening*.
For example: Muse's Absolution has an introduction track that never gets terribly loud, but leads in directly to a normal song. Sound Check did the following:
- "Intro" adjusted +19.5 dB
- "Apocalypse Please" adjusted -8.5 dB
The ending of the first track is meant to be the same volume as the beginning of the second, but because of Sound Check, this doesn't happen.
I have written album_soundcheck.py which computes the average volume of m4a or mp3 files and replaces the iTunes information ...
Best of 2008
This is out of the norm of my blog posts, but it being the end of the year I thought I'd mention some things I've found to be really good this year. I recommend these things to anyone.
"Life in Technicolor," by Coldplay, from Viva la Vida
The first track from their new album. No actual lyrics, but great music. I've listened to it more than any other track on the album. Go buy it on Amazon or iTunes and enjoy 2 minutes of great music.
Weezer, by Weezer
The Red Album was really good. I had the chance to see Weezer in concert this fall, and I'm still sold on how great a band they are. Rivers does a lot of interesting stuff on this album, but I especially enjoy "The Greatest Man Who Ever Lived."
Penny Arcade Adventures, On the Rain-Slick ...