I see that AIFF encoding is now available with the latest development version of the CD ripper abcde.

How can I easily test this out under Ubuntu's Xenial Xerus?

(Full disclaimer: I personally added AIFF encoding to abcde...)

1 Answer 1


You can easily test this out under Ubuntu without even making a full installation of abcde. This will allow you to test out AIFF encoding before abcde 2.8.2 is released :). Four easy steps:

1. Install some required applications...

Here are some prerequisites which must be installed. Open a Terminal window and run the following:

sudo apt-get install cd-discid cdparanoia abcde ffmpeg git

(This will also install the stock Ubuntu abcde as this is perhaps the easiest way to get the script cddb-tool installed as well.)

2. Place a configuration file:

abcde runs best when a detailed configuration file is placed. First create an empty file:

touch $HOME/.abcde.conf

Now use your preferred text editor to place the following configuration details in this file:

# -----------------$HOME/.abcde.conf----------------- #
#   A sample configuration file to convert music cds to 
#   Audio Interchange File Format (AIFF). This requires
#   abcde version 2.8.2 and a recent copy of FFmpeg
#   http://andrews-corner.org/linux/abcde/index.html
# -------------------------------------------------- #

# Encode tracks immediately after reading. Saves disk space, gives
# better reading of 'scratchy' disks and better troubleshooting of
# encoding process but slows the operation of abcde quite a bit:

# Specify the method to use to retrieve the track information,
# the alternative is to specify 'musicbrainz':

# Make a local cache of cddb entries and then volunteer to use 
# these entries when and if they match the cd:

# Specify the encoder to use for Audio Interchange File Format (AIFF):

# Specify the path to the selected encoder. In most cases the encoder
# should be in your $PATH as I illustrate below, otherwise you will 
# need to specify the full path. For example: /usr/bin/ffmpeg

# Specify your required AIFF encoding options here. These options are
# needed by FFmpeg for tagging and selection of id3v2 version:
#  1. '-write_id3v2 1' allows id3v2 tagging while '-write_id3v2 0' disables tagging
#  2. '-id3v2_version 4' gives version id3v2.4 while '3' gives id3v2.3 
AIFFENCOPTS="-write_id3v2 1 -id3v2_version 4"  

# Output type for AIFF:

# The cd ripping program to use. There are a few choices here: cdda2wav,
# dagrab, cddafs (Mac OS X only) and flac. New to abcde 2.7 is 'libcdio'.

# Give the location of the ripping program and pass any extra options,
# if using libcdio set 'CD_PARANOIA=cd-paranoia'.

# Give the location of the CD identification program:       

# Give the base location here for the encoded music files.

# The default actions that abcde will take.


# Create playlists for single and various-artist encodes. I would suggest
# commenting these out for single-track encoding.

# This function takes out dots preceding the album name, and removes a grab
# bag of illegal characters. It allows spaces, if you do not wish spaces add
# in -e 's/ /_/g' after the first sed command.
mungefilename ()
  echo "$@" | sed -e 's/^\.*//' | tr -d ":><|*/\"'?[:cntrl:]"

# What extra options?
MAXPROCS=2                                # Run a few encoders simultaneously
PADTRACKS=y                               # Makes tracks 01 02 not 1 2
EXTRAVERBOSE=2                            # Useful for debugging
COMMENT='abcde version 2.8.2'             # Place a comment...
EJECTCD=y                                 # Please eject cd when finished :-)

3. Grab a copy of the git abcde:

Now use your git client to download the most recent version of the abcde git tree:

git clone http://git.einval.com/git/abcde.git ~/abcde

This will leave a working copy of abcde in $HOME/abcde.

4. Run abcde:

Now for the fun bit :). Place an audio CD in your drive and run the following two commands:

cd $HOME/abcde

(Note that the ./ section is important as this will reference only the copy of abcde downloaded here and not the release version also installed on your system.) If all is well your audio CD will now be painlessly converted to AIFF with the files neatly tagged and then placed in $HOME/Music!


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