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#389607 - 01/11/17 04:05 AM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] About Audiophile upgrades
Registered: 12/18/15
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Jon Thomas Offline
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Hi guys,

I just received the hard drive with the 2017 upgrade to my 2016 Audiophile version. Thank you. I'm very happy with it :-)

However, as I live in Europe, I had to pay 75 euros (almost 90 dollars) in customs fees and duties. That's a lot of money (for me at least). Especially because I'm paying for something I don't really need (the physical hard drive).

So, I was wondering ...

I understand that for 1st time Audiophile buyers it is necessary to receive the hard drive - the download would be too large.
But for Audiophile upgraders (those who already have a previous version of the Audiophile hard drive), why not allow a download only option?

The only thing that we would have to donwload would be the program folder and the new real tracks, NOT all the real tracks.
I know that the Everything pack, for example, has a download only option. My guess is that downloading the whole Everything pack with ALL the (compressed) tracks would be much larger that downloading just the new, uncompressed tracks for Audiophile users.
So, why not?
We would have several benefits:
- no delays in shipments
- no risk of receiving damaged hard drives
- faster (immediate) delivery
- no costum duties

Honestly, I would be happy to even pay a little more for a download option, as I would save money anyway because of the duties.

So ... why not?

Thank you for your attention.
And thank you for this great product and company.
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#389614 - 01/11/17 05:54 AM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] Re: About Audiophile upgrades [Re: Jon Thomas]
Registered: 07/12/00
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Loc: Hudson Valley & Lake George NY
Matt Finley Offline
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In past years, I manually added the new RealTracks I wanted by copying from the new drive to my computer. It wasn't so large that a download would not work. This year, though, they re-recorded (remastered) some of the older tracks so the download would have been larger.

Still, your idea sounds reasonable to me.
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BIAB 2019 Win Audiophile; [& 2018 Mac UltraPak]. Software: Cakewalk, Adobe Audition, Ozone, Encore; Win 10 64 Pro. Hardware: custom i7, 16 Gb; Roland Integra-7, Focusrite 18i20(2), TCE Finalizer, Behringer X-Touch, Adam sub & monitors.

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#389627 - 01/11/17 07:02 AM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] Re: About Audiophile upgrades [Re: Jon Thomas]
Registered: 12/18/15
Posts: 172
Jon Thomas Offline
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Posts: 172
Thank you Matt.
I think it's reasonable too, but of course maybe we're missing something that the PG folks know and we don't.
There would be several advantages, and it would make it more desirable to buy the product for overseas customers. A win-win.
And, quite honestly, saving 90 dollars or so per year ... multiplied by several years of "faithful" upgrades ... in the end, it becomes quite a significant saving! ... enough money for a new guitar, for example smile
(but don't tell my wife though ..)


Edited by Jon Thomas (01/11/17 07:04 AM)
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#389696 - 01/11/17 04:10 PM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] Re: About Audiophile upgrades [Re: Jon Thomas]
Registered: 02/05/15
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Pipeline Offline
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I have a big pile of pg audiophile hard drives I don't know what to do with, one would be enough to just update with downloads each year.
The new Realtrack/Drums downloads for 2017 in wma were about 6.5gig, the wav files are are just over 10 x the size, so over 70gig download I would say.
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#389772 - 01/12/17 03:32 AM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] Re: About Audiophile upgrades [Re: Pipeline]
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Jon Thomas Offline
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Yes, and the Everything pack total download I think is quite larger than 70 gig (very rough estimate, but it seems to be that way).
So ... I don't know, it seems to me that if the download option is ok for the Everything pack, it should also be feasible for Audiophile upgrades.
As I said, there may be reasons why this is not possible, I don't know.
We'll see next year I guess. I'm sure PG folks are reading this. I'll remind them after the summer smile
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#389808 - 01/12/17 07:12 AM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] Re: About Audiophile upgrades [Re: Jon Thomas]
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Matt Finley Offline
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Jon, what would the customs impact be on a flash drive?
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#389857 - 01/12/17 11:07 AM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] Re: About Audiophile upgrades [Re: Jon Thomas]
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Jon Thomas Offline
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I think it's a percentage of the value of the item, declared by the seller. I don't think it has to do with the weight or size of the item. So, I paid 75 euros for a value declared of about 260 dollars (I think, I dont have the receipt in front of me, but I think it's about right, as my purchase also included the xtra style pack). Actually, I think there was also a 10 euro administrative fee or something like that as well. So i guess in my case (Italy) the percentage is about 25% or so of the value, plus other fees, but I'm sure it varies with the country of destination.
As I said, not a very pleasant thing smile

Just one more thing.
Pipeline's estimate about the size of the new uncompressed real tracks is correct, however they could be downloaded in a zipped format, and that would certainly reduce the size of the download in half or even more. So, if I'm not wrong, the download for the Everything pack, as it is now, is probably double in size or so of what it would be the download size for the Audiophile upgrade.


Edited by Jon Thomas (01/12/17 11:20 AM)
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#389866 - 01/12/17 11:42 AM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] Re: About Audiophile upgrades [Re: Jon Thomas]
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jford Offline
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Unfortunately, Zip isn't going to get you 50% compression on audio files. There are some options in Zip, but whoever receives the file must have a version of WinZip/7Zip/etc capable of decoding those options. And Zip is really designed for general purpose, not audio-specific.

You would have to use a lossless CODEC instead - maybe FLAC or APE (Monkey's Audio), which are optimized for audio. But then, of course you would need the drive space to download the files, and then take the time and additional drive space to decompress them.
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#389869 - 01/12/17 11:59 AM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] Re: About Audiophile upgrades [Re: jford]
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Jon Thomas Offline
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John
you're right about ZIP. But with FLAC you can get almost 50% of compression (lossless of course). Then you need to uncompress it, yes. I'd rather do that than spending 90 dollars every year smile
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#389877 - 01/12/17 12:34 PM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] Re: About Audiophile upgrades [Re: Jon Thomas]
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Pipeline Offline
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Rar will compress wav files down a lot more that zip and rar is supposed to be lossless from what I have read.
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#390056 - 01/13/17 09:15 AM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] Re: About Audiophile upgrades [Re: Jon Thomas]
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jford Offline
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From the sites I took a look at (where folks have posted results), for the most part standard Zip might give you about 10-15% compression at most (although Zipx format could give you 30-ish%; RAR is up around 30-35%, but FLAC (which is optimized for compressing audio specifically) will generally give you 40-50% compression on WAV files. Your results, of course, will vary depending upon the size of the files and he content of the files.
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#390083 - 01/13/17 10:58 AM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] Re: About Audiophile upgrades [Re: jford]
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Pipeline Offline
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There's also http://www.wavpack.com/

I think moving to a lossless audio compression would be a good thing, the internals of the program would need to be change to work with the lossless formats, most of them will do multichannel so you could have your 5-10 or more Drum channels within the file, moving realdrums from stereo to multichannel.

WavPack is a completely open audio compression format providing lossless, high-quality lossy, and a unique hybrid compression mode. For version 5.0.0, several new file formats and lossless DSD audio compression were added, making WavPack a universal audio archiving solution.

In the default lossless mode WavPack acts just like a WinZip compressor for audio files. However, unlike MP3 or WMA encoding which can affect the sound quality, not a single bit of the original information is lost, so there's no chance of degradation. This makes lossless mode ideal for archiving audio material or any other situation where quality is paramount. The compression ratio depends on the source material, but generally is between 30% and 70%.

The hybrid mode provides all the advantages of lossless compression with an additional bonus. Instead of creating a single file, this mode creates both a relatively small, high-quality lossy file that can be used all by itself, and a "correction" file that (when combined with the lossy file) provides full lossless restoration. For some users this means never having to choose between lossless and lossy compression!

WavPack employs only well known, public domain techniques (i.e., linear prediction with LMS adaptation, Elias and Golomb codes) in its implementation. Methods and algorithms that have ever been patented (e.g., arithmetic coding, LZW compression) are specifically avoided. This ensures that WavPack encoders and decoders will remain open and royalty-free.
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#390091 - 01/13/17 11:39 AM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] Re: About Audiophile upgrades [Re: Jon Thomas]
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Loc: Hudson Valley & Lake George NY
Matt Finley Offline
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That's very interesting info. I had not heard of them.

Monkey's Audio was the most lossless compression for audio that I've seen, and it is 50% at best. If this can go higher, especially with no license costs, that's extraordinary.
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#390352 - 01/14/17 12:27 PM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] Re: About Audiophile upgrades [Re: Jon Thomas]
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Jim Fogle Online   happy
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+1

While it doesn't personally affect me I think the suggestion is well thought out and would directly benefit both PG Music and its international customer base. Definately worthy of consideration by PG Music's marketing and Sales teams.
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#391055 - 01/18/17 08:18 AM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] Re: About Audiophile upgrades [Re: Jon Thomas]
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Icelander Offline
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I'm on the same boat as the OP, overseas and massive VAT are a big deterrents with any online purchases (which I guess in the case of my country at least is somewhat the whole point), so this is an easy +1
And like Pipeline, I've lost track of the number of external drives from PG I've been sent over the years and have no idea what to do with crazy
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#391991 - 01/23/17 05:16 PM [Band-in-a-Box Wishlist] Re: About Audiophile upgrades [Re: Jon Thomas]
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doctormidi Offline
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+1 for me being I from Italy!
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Review all the new features of Band-in-a-Box® 2019 here.

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