Album Artwork

A few years ago, I burned all my CDs to FLAC using DBPoweramp when I was Windows based. I changed my operating system a couple of years ago to Mac OS. All of my FLAC files now sit both on a separate HDD as well as a NAS which links to my streamer. I use my iPad as a UPnP controller.

A number of my albums have poor quality album artwork and now that I am retired and have more time, I’m keen to upgrade the album artwork to higher quality resolution files. So 2 questions, I guess (i) what is the best tag editor for Mac to replace album artwork and (ii) what is the ideal resolution that I should be looking for?

Historically, I’ve used Album Art Exchange to source artwork.

I think DBPoweramp has an option to do it, but aside from that, I think the most common on this Forum (and easy to use) is MP3 tag, which is in the App Store

Screenshot 2022-04-29 at 17.58.13


I use Metadatics to edit metadata on a Mac. It can add artwork, and it’s pretty simple to use.

Beware of adding very high quality images. They use a little more space, and on some devices can load slowly, or even fail to load. Some servers (including Naim’s) have a size limit which you should not exceed.

@ChrisSU interesting. Do you know the size limit?

I guess different servers will vary. The Unitiserve, when it adds artwork itself to a CD rip, will use images up to 1280 x 1280 pixels.

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Thank you. That’s helpful. DBPoweramp has, indeed I believe, an editor whereby album artwork can be exchanged. However, since I migrated from Windows to Mac OS I no longer have DBP. I will give the MP3 editor a try. I know I have previously downloaded artwork with a resolution of 1000 x 1000 successfully from an image perspective so hopefully that will continue to be ok.

Your help is much appreciated.

There is a Mac version of dBP I think

I use DBP with my mac.

There is indeed. @nyron59 you might be able to move your licence across to your MAC platform - worth checking perhaps

As already mentioned - Mp3tag is very good with a number of artwork options. Also would say beware of size - I’ve found that anything over 1 mb can create issues in either my car or on my Atom.

I use Picard music tagger to sort out meta data and also the folder structure. It has cover art for most things and I add to the musicbrainz entry when it does not. The latest version supports limiting the art size (although it defaults to a miserly 500 x 500).

I’ll add another vote for Metadatics. It’s my go-to tag editor on Mac. Easy to use, good spreadsheet-like layout and some useful facilities for modifying tags.


I too reviewed my artwork a few years ago. I had just started using Qobuz and noted that they used 600x600 for their artwork so I opted for the same size. I had noted that some of my earlier rips had used inferior lower pixel size which I replaced.

There are two elements involved in choice of artwork - the pixel size and the resolution (dots per inch).
600x600 pixels equates to about 8" on many displays, whilst 800x800 equates to 11". There seems little value in a higher size. Also a size of 1000x1000 or less will not likely cause problems with any server software.

The resolution for screen display should be 72 dpi or greater. Many of mine are 96 dpi. The greater the dpi the greater the clarity but the larger the file size. Note a higher dpi will be wasted upon most displays and are for printing/photographic use.

The resulting file size will depend upon choice of pixel size, resolution and the content. A text on plain background cover consumes a small size whilst a photographic or complex art cover will be significantly bigger. I find my artwork is typically between 50kb and 150kb.

Moving forward I might use 800x800 if available in the future. Presently if I spot a suspect cover I investigate.

You can find album cover artwork with a Google images search then check them out for size, colour, correctness and alignment. I use a photo editor to crop them and adjust them (down) to the required size/resolution, and also to remove minor artwork blemishes. I then apply them with Id-Tag editor of dBpoweramp.

+1 for Mp3Tag

@Paul_C , historically I used albumartexchange when I needed to find a cover if DBPoweramp did not have the source cover. In looking at albumartexchange or, indeed, using Google I can find the data that sets out eg 600 x 600 or 800 x 800 but nothing that sets out dpi. I appreciate this may be a very basic info but where do I find dpi info?

I use dBpoweramp if I want to change album art, this is easy to do with already ripped albums.
I have Windows but suspect its the same/similar with MacOS
Select the album & highlight all the tracks > right mouse click > in popup window, select “Edit ID Tags” . A new screen opens, select “Choose From Internet” button near the album art picture at bottom of screen. This opens all the known www art associated with that album.
Select the new art & delete “X” the original & save “OK”

My NAS media server is Asset UPnP & that is not concerned with size (pixel count) that said it has a user option to limits size to 2000x2000, but its hard to see any improvement with art size over 1000x1000 on the iPad. The only real difference I’ve found is better colour tone definition has more effect than pixel count.

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If you right-click on a folder.jpg or a downloaded file and select properties you will see it.
(sure Mac is similar to Windows).
It will also be evident in a photo editor.

Often when saving a file the Image Quality is adjusting the quality and thus the file size.

Golden rule is of course you cannot “improve” quality by increasing pixels/quality/dpi of an existing image.

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