On 12/02/07, Christie Peterson wrote:
> Hello,
> No one ever said you HAVE to use CDs as a listening copy.  So, be 
> creative in your attempts to combine easy user access and cost 
> containment, and please share the results!

Most cheap DVD players will play a CD full of MP3 files. A crude menu is
shown on the screen (which can be a small low cost TV).

This might be a useful format, especially for spoken word material.
Typically, you would get as much on one CD as on ten standard audio CDs.

I wouldn't recommend this where audio quality is critical.

> With the caveat about sound quality that Tom Fine made, there's no
> reason not to serve up MP3's in-house (if you put them on the web, you
> start running into lots of copyright issues, and I'm not going to go
> there in this post).
> As much as I've drunk the Apple kool-aid (my home computer is a Mac
> laptop, and I own several iPods), I would advise against using an iPod
> if you're trying to keep costs low. (1) They're expensive for the
> amount of memory space you're getting. (2) You have to use proprietary
> software to load them, run them and keep them running. That software
> is currently free and widely available, but who knows about 5 years
> from now. (3) The batteries run down and are not replaceable, and the
> entire units wear out/break, and are not easy (if even possible?) to
> fix. I have a 2 1/2-year-old iPod sitting unused in my desk at home
> right now because the hard drive keeps failing and even the Apple
> "Geniuses" can't make it work.
> I would ask myself what you really want to achieve. If you want your
> users to be able to work out while listening to your audio, then, yes,
> iPods or something similar are probably the answer. If you just don't
> want to deal with the space and bother of hundreds of CDs, then I'd
> look into setting up a listening station that looks more like a
> regular computer. You can hook up a dummy terminal to your LAN, or
> have a stand-alone desktop unit for about the same price as an iPod
> (or less, especially if you buy used from a University or somewhere
> similar), and you'll have much more options now and in the future. If
> you want slightly more portability, you could set up a laptop with
> wireless (getting more expensive here), with a long wire, or just
> running off the hard drive.
> Good luck, and keep us posted!
> Christie Peterson
> Project Archivist, Muskie Archives & Special Collections
> Bates College
> 70 Campus Avenue
> Lewiston, ME 04240-6018
> (t) 207-753-6918
> (f) 207-755-5911
> Farris Wahbeh wrote:
>> Is this audio archival transgression? Do we need to use CDs as a
>> listening copy, or can an MP3 suffice. I'm trying to cut down on
>> space and costs.
Don Cox
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