Before the ND5 XS2 arrives

I’ve got a ND5XS2 arriving next week so just looking for some advice before it gets here.

I have a fair number of CDs to rip which will be stored on a Qnap NAS (also arriving next week). I’ve started using dbPowerAmp to rip them to flac. For now I’m leaving the metadata untouched and just going with what dbPowerAmp defaults to, likewise the file names and folder structure.

Are the default metadata tags good enough or is there anything else I should be adding to it? I usually listen to albums and browse by either artist name or album name, probably nothing more complex than that.

For listening to an album, do I need to create a .m3u playlist file to go with the flac files or will the uPnP server handle that? If I do need to create a .m3u file, can this be done in dbPowerAmp as I couldn’t see any options to do that. Similarly for the artwork displayed on the Naim app, does the uPnP server fetch that from the internet at run time or do I need an image file in with the flac files, or does dbPowerAmp embed the artwork in the flac files? I see the artwork in dbPowerAmp but can’t see how to save those files along with the flacs.

Any advice welcomed!

No idea what an m3u is but you don’t need one.

When the disc is ripping you will see the album art being retrieved in a box at the bottom right of the screen. Sometimes you’ll be happy with it, sometimes not. The image gets embedded in each file, and is stored in a file called folder. You don’t need to keep the folder file. You can also see the metadata being added and change it if you want.

If you want a different cover then you can chose two options - chose from file or get from internet, or something like that. You just add a new one and delete the old one. When adding a new picture you’ll see three little dots. One option is to resize the file. Say you find a 1200 by 1200 you like you can resize to say 600 by 600 which will be a more sensible file size.

One piece of metadata I use a lot is genre. So if I fancy some vocal jazz I can search under that.

One the Qnap you should have a folder for each artist, and then the albums under that.

You can easily change metadata later. Just find the files, highlight all the tracks, right click and choose Edit ID tag. It’s easiest to get the metadata right while the files are on your computer. Then copy them to the nas. You can edit directly in the nas but it’s slower.

Just remember: tidy metadata is happy metadata.

For me, the key metadata to ensure is right / there in the first place is Album Artist and (perhaps more important) Album Artist Sort. I like David Bowie to appear under B, not D.


Good tip and it helped me figure out how to use dbPowerAmp to edit metadata :slight_smile:

@elverdiblanco: as HH points out, tidy metadata is mandatory for a rewarding browsing experience: if you are not prepared to spend some time cleaning up your metadata, you should perhaps consider Roon.

Regarding which tags you should populate: it very much depends on the kind of music you plan to rip or buy and on your personal preferences. I mainly listen to classical music and a little bit of jazz. My tags are “composer”, “work”, “conductor”, “ensemble”, “artist”, “genre”, “form”, “period” and “incdate”. I use “incdate” (incorporation date) to list the most recent albums in descending order.

It looks like the default metadata is by and large good enough for me as I tend to look for albums by artist or album name. The one tag I am adding ideas suggested above by @GavinB is Artist Sort so that Leonard Cohen is under C rather than L

That’s fine until you get to albums with multiple artists. I prefer to ensure Album Artist and Album Artist Sort are also complete

Also, the notion of artist is not very telling: composers, conductors, musicians, directors, singers are all artists but one typically wants to use different tags for these different roles.

Artist and Album Artist tags should be fine for me. I’m not much in to classical music and I rarely buy compilations. I have a few compilations by the same band usually for completeness where I don’t otherwise have singles and B sides. I don’t think I have any more than 1 or 2 various artists compilations.

I’m liking dbPowerAmp but there have been a few discs so far it has just refused to rip, but the same disc has been successfully ripped by Exact Audio Copy. If only EAC wasn’t so slow compared with dbPowerAmp and handled metadata editing as well as dbPowerAmp does.

In this case you can use the internal server of the ND5XS2 and you do not even need the QNAP. It does not hurt, of course, and might be useful for backup, if you want to serve some other files or, perhaps later, to run a UPnP server that supports more comprehensive metadata.

The Qnap NAS is something I’ve been thinking about for a while anyway and this was the push I needed. But if I were to use the built in server, where would there media be, just on a hard drive attached by USB in to the back of the ND5?

Yes, the built in server can only access files on a USB drive attached to the streamer.

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