Batch Convert

Hi folks, I’m hoping for some advice on converting a NAS full of WAV & AIFF albums to FLAC.
Its for a friend who is a little IT nervous & has asked for help - the deal includes weekend stay with (always) excellent food & country house stuff.
As I understand it he has (2000’ish) mix of FLAC, WAV & AIFF plus some DSD which he doesn’t want to convert. His NAS is a QNAP & I will be using my laptop with dBpoweramp.
I’ve used dBp since I first started to convert individual albums but I’ve never used Batch Convert.
I’ve had a quick play on my NAS but its left me concerned with a few items as I don’t want to trash anything, TBH I was expecting more settings & options.
Is there a setting that can be used to ID & reject DSD files in the convert
Is there a setting that just over-writes the old files & replaces them with the new FLAC
Any other tips & must do’s

… thanks

You should find batch convert easy to use. It allows you to select which folders and/or files you wish to convert so as long as the DSD files are not mixed in with the other files it should be straight forward. Once you have selected the folders and files, you then choose what format you want to convert to, where you want to save the files and what you want to call them.

I would advise again deleting as you convert. Do the conversions, check they’re OK and then delete the originals.

I hope that helps.

My concern would be with the wavs and if relevant tags etc transfer successfully.

As I understand it all his rips were done with dBp or similar by himself or his son. The metadata should be embedded as per stnd MS WAV.

I have about 700 AIFF albums I’d like to convert to FLAC at some point. I have a QNAP and a macbook, can I use this batch convert for this?

I always make batch conversion from the command line. This is fast, safe and straightforward. For example

find . -name ‘*.wav’ -exec bash -c ‘flac “$1”; rm “$1”’ – {} ;

finds and converts to flac all .wav files in the folder in which the command is issued and in all its subfolders to .flac. You can try it on a small batch of files and see whether it fits your needs. O’Reilly used to offer a long list of similar commands at

“www dot oreillynet dot com slash onlamp slash blog slash 2004 slash 11 slash convert_audio_between_mp3_flac dot html”

to do all sorts of conversions, but the page does not appear to be any longer available. Have fun with the food + country house weekend!


You can manually select folders and files to convert - in your case, you can de-select the dsd folders. There may be a more sophisticated way of doing this.
There’s certainly a DSP setting to delete the original file (so you create the converted file in the same folder as the old one, and delete the old one at the same time). I’ve never had an issue using this DSP.
Recently I’ve applied the replaygain utility codec to all my files - it took about three days, but allows replay gain playback in Asset.

Thanks for the info Peakski. Selecting manually is what I was afraid of, I had a look at the guys NAS file folders yesterday, best said its a mess. A number of different music shares, folders & subfolders of subfolders & a few duplicates . I’m having a think before I get started & it will probably mean having his NAS at my house & restructuring before I get started.

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When I first started ripping I used WAV (via DBP) then realised what a colossal waste of space that was going to be, so used DBP to batch convert to FLAC. Dead easy, metadata intact. Took a while though. if I remember correctly,

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Surprise surprise, this has turned out to be a doddle. I’ve got the NAS at my house where I can keep working on it. I’ve moved files around into a new empty share that will eventually be the only Music share.
I (we) selected any & all albums from the mess of folders that looked OK, a mix of WAV, AIFF & even some FLAC, & moved them into the new Music. Once I had a few of these I started batch converting, I’m using Level 5 Compression & DSP Effects ‘Delete Source File’ meaning each album track gets replaced/overwritten with FLAC.
While the batch converting was going on I continued moving (adding) other files into the new Music share, & when able started converting these.
Its going to take a while with all the finding & moving of albums & folders of albums, but hopefully I should get finished sometime on Monday.

Its proving so easy, I’m tempted to convert all my WAV to FLAC & grab some HDD space


DBP batch convert has a great tagging plugin. In fact I use EAC for my rips (just because I always did and it works) and let DBP batch convert simply leave the wav file payload as-is but rewrite the tags. It does a sterling job of making sense of folders structured by artist/album and track number and is very flexible.

I’d say tagging in general, automatic or otherwise, is DBP’s strongsuit.

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Well that certainly proved easier & faster than I had expected.
His NAS now has one only Music share, plus some other empty shares ready for photo’s & home. Luckily most all his music is rock, folk & jazz so its easy to list the albums under ‘album artist’ (that turned out to be a problem with so many albums with missing metadata tags for that) Some work to be done with classical metadata but I have dropped them into compossor name folders for easier browsing.
All his previous WAV AIFF & ALAC is now FLAC (comp level 5) & untouched DSD.
I’m taking the NAS back to him this pm, need to do some ‘training’ etc, but as his kids have now flown the nest & he no longer has to share the NAS, he should be all set for a while.

Now the question is, do I convert my WAV to FLAC (5)
I’m not desperate as my NAS is only showing 51% HDD used, but even so I recon FLAC (5) will bring that back to around 30%.
I’m thinking about moving all my photo’s from an old decrepit HDD to the Synology & that extra space will be useful.

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I keep all my music files in .flac but I only have about 500GB of data and I would not convert between formats for the only purpose of saving disk space. I keep 5 or 6 copies of my music collection on drives of sizes between 1TB and 8TB, thus disk space is not an issue for me. I do not have a Qnap or a Synology NAS in my LAN but two or three Raspberry Pi devices. These make available the music files to different renderers, among others to the DigiOne Signature that is connected to my Naim DAC.

… well the answer is YES
I ran a few test tracks (again) comparing FLAC-5 transcode to WAV -vs- straight WAV (to be sure to be sure). There’s no detectable difference so I’m now busy converting all my WAV to FLAC-5, but not touching the sizable number of DSD’s & Mrs-Mike’s MP3’s stay as is.

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I converted my WAVs to FLAC a few years ago, and with transcoding on the fly, I certainly couldn’t hear any difference. Since moving to new platform streamers, I’ve played some stuff in FLAC, and although I haven’t made any direct A/B comparisons, it still sounds pretty good.

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I have FLAC and AIFF on my NAS and they all sound great through Asset. How would I find out if my FLAC files are FLAC 5? I don’t know what that means.

The number is the compression level I used, You can rip or convert to FLAC with various compression levels - compression is only how its packed, not how its played. It can be ripped uncompressed or at level number 0 to 8 (highest), level 5 is the recommended level per dBpoweramp.
There is no easy way to look-see what you have that I can find, a level 5 FLAC is aprx 33% smaller than an uncompressable WAV or AIFF or uncompressed FLAC

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Compression levels go from 0 (lowest compression, quickest, largest file) to 8 (most compression, slowest, smallest file). It takes longer to compress the higher the level but the decoding/decompression process is always quite fast and is not dependent on the level of compression. All compression is lossless regardless of the level chosen.

Your files are most likely level 5 compressed since that is the default. As Mike says, I don’t think the compression level is encoded in the file so there’s no way to tell. However, it shouldn’t really matter from a playback perspective.

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Go to Windows Explorer and hover over a track. If the gods are with you it’ll pop up with a window that includes the encoder settings (here seen as 5).


Nick, that method works as long as the file was encoded using dbPoweramp. It relies on a custom tag written by the dbP encoder but not all encoders do this. The reference libflac library doesn’t do this. Still, it’s worth trying to see what metadata was written to the file.