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command line utilities for audio conversion

hello there!

i am looking for command line applications to convert the following media formats to WAV

AU
RA
RM
RAM
M4A
MP4
MPGA
OGG

if they are individual apps, it would be better

if a mp3 file can have 5.1 tracks, then a AC3-MP3 convertor is also required.
and a wmv-avi

all converters have to be command line though.

thanx!
hathehariken.
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hathehariken
Asked:
hathehariken
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2 Solutions
 
ReneGeCommented:
Try this: http://sox.sourceforge.net/

Please give feedback.

Cheers,
Rene
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hatheharikenAuthor Commented:
AU - Sox
RA - still looking
RM - still looking
RAM - still looking
M4A - still looking
MP4 - still looking
MPGA - still looking
OGG - still looking

5.1 AAC - still looking

WMV - AVI - still looking

ReneGe, i am looking for standalone utils, so that they are very portable (sorry that i did not specifically mention that in the opening post)
i can not install add-ons and extra programs and codecs to make the core util function - in one word, no dependencies.

if there are individual apps for individual formats, there is no problem
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hatheharikenAuthor Commented:
i just downloaded Sox and tested it.

it requires an installation.
that wont work.

exe file has to run as it is, no installation can not be performed.

example:
flac.exe
lame.exe
ffmpeg.exe

size of exe does not matter.
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ocanada_techguyCommented:
>> exe file has to run as it is, no installation can not be performed. << Gee if you insist on that constraint you're unlikely to find anything.
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hatheharikenAuthor Commented:
oh my, that would be unfortunate. i am sure you experts would find some apps that could do what i want...

fyi, against your comment, i have already stated 3 apps that does not require installation.....
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ReneGeCommented:
@hathehariken

Does your found 3 apps are providing you with the desired results?
Do you need help in how to use these apps from a command line?

Cheers,
Rene
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hatheharikenAuthor Commented:
the 3 apps i have found are performing as documented.

but the formats i have mentioned in the opening question still need to be converted to WAV

if the 3 apps can convert, i would love to hear the syntax.

thanx.
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ReneGeCommented:
Would you mind then sharing what are those apps?
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ocanada_techguyCommented:
Understood,

It's just most programs these days are written to exploit the Codec architechture of the myriad of codecs you may or may not have installed to your OS, so they too tend to want to be installed to the OS, and then they could very well have a command line equivalent.  Like this http://www.mystikmedia.com/audiocommander.asp

If not then perhaps DOS command line programs. http://www.opus.co.tt/dave/indexall.htm but the problem looking for those is...
While there's ample demand, and therefore supply, of programs to go to 10 to 20 times more efficient and near lossless encodings, but going the reverse diection to WAV is far more obscure, hence of course you're asking here.

Might I ask, what's the real problem and objective you're trying to solve?  Perhaps instead of having WAV so you can edit with a WAV editor, if that's the reason, you could use an editor that lets you soundwave edit/transform MP3 directly, such as Audacity?

Perhaps consider this one as the broadest range of from and to encodings, including to WAV http://www.nesoft.org/index.shtml.  Or maybe http://www.nch.com.au/switch/index.html  http://www.avs4you.com/AVS-Audio-Converter.aspx
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ocanada_techguyCommented:
For an alternate explanation of why each codec's individual exe utility tends to only go from WAV to it's one codec format or reverse, but each codec is unlikely by itself to be able to decode other additional codec formats, see my comment here http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/MS_DOS/Q_27038266.html
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hatheharikenAuthor Commented:
@ReneGe:
Would you mind then sharing what are those apps?

they are:
flac.exe
lame.exe
ffmpeg.exe

@O! Canada!:
Audio Commander requires installation.

opus.co.tt has quite an interesting collection. definitely bookmark material! thanks!!


what's the real problem and objective you're trying to solve?

client has more than 7tb of music assets
i have to work at client's location, on a privilege restricted workstation.
cannot install, but execution of DOS items is allowed.

basic assignment as pertains to this question is conversion of all 2.0 tracks into 320_44.1_MP3
and conversion of all 5.1 tracks into one format (haven't found out a suitable format yet)

since file by file conversion would probably take centuries, i have written a small batch file:
take directory list, convert all formats, except MP3, into WAV.
then encode WAV into MP3.

NeSoft, NCH, and AVS4you all requires installation.

each codec's individual exe utility tends to only go from WAV to it's one codec format or reverse

i know!!!
so that;s why i said in the original question:
if they are individual apps, it would be better

please help!
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ocanada_techguyCommented:
Well you saw in the other thread the idea that if the decoder can pipe output to the stdou then pipe from one command into lame, otherwise interim WAV file step.

Clearly they (the client situation) don't want anything installed that could mess up their machines they use for high-end editing, composing, or whatever it is.

I think they should have, I would suggest, you have a separate dedicated machine that you CAN install software on.  You could use a laptop, but if they're concerned the laptop could be carted away then one could obtain a loaner or buy a refurbished desktop with integrated 5.1 or 7.1 soundcard for as little as $180, grab an old CRT monitor for $20.  It could be theirs and remain on their premises, you could prepare it with everything they'll need, they could then audit that and connect it to their network but block it from internet outside access.  The you can efficiently and effectively accomplish your task with the afore-commented GUI multi-codec supported conversion tool or tools.

You might need up to 15TB or more just to hold the interim WAVs plus the additional 7TB (or more if you CBR 320) space required for the destination MP3s, so you'll need tons more space or have to delete batches as you convert eh.   Do they have a complete backup they plan to archive?

IMHO make a determination if fixed bitrate CBR 320 is required, as many of your source files are already variable encoded and LAME VBR Q2 is very high quality roughly half the size of CBR.  Some editors prefer all fixed bitrate as some apps can jump navigate to mm:ss.ff faster when CBR.

It would be an idea to take inventory of what original files are in what encoding quality, as something converted from 9k6bitrate (RA or MP4 or what have you), to WAV and then to 320 MP3 will in the end "appear" to be 320k but actually sound the quality of 96k if you see what I mean.  Careful, I've seen windows explorer misrepresent the bitrates if you just add that column to explorer view, plus explorer is dog slow for any attributes other than standard filesystem ones, so I find MP3Tag far superior tool more reliable at reading the header attributes accurately, export to files or spreadsheets.

Hope that helps.
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ReneGeCommented:
Using Lame,

This will convert your MP3 files to WAV in the directory "S:\Music\Test" and it's sub directories.

If you have trouble understanding the batch file, let me know.

 
@ECHO OFF

SET MusicFolder=S:\Music\Test

FOR /F "delims=" %%A IN ('DIR /b /s %MusicFolder%\*.mp3') DO lame.exe --decode "%%~fA" "%%~dpnA.wav"

Open in new window

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hatheharikenAuthor Commented:
Clearly they (the client situation) don't want anything installed that could mess up their machines they use for high-end editing, composing, or whatever it is.

i think thats the main reason.
i AM, after all, working on their render server (the one with the highest processing capacity - quad xeons).

a separate dedicated machine that you CAN install software on
first, they wont allow it.
second, with lowered processing capacity, the work will take longer.

You might need up to 15TB or more just to hold the interim WAVs plus
work flow is serial, not parallel
each file is converted, converted again and the sources deleted then and there.
i only need about 200 mb for holding only 1 wav and 1 mp3.

make a determination if fixed bitrate CBR 320 is required
it has already been decided - cant do anything now.


up-conversion was talked about, but they finally decided to go for it.
since all file names have the original bitrate and other attribs hards coded, i dont think its and issue.



This will convert your MP3 files to WAV in the directory "S:\Music\Test" and it's sub directories.
i use this:

a 2 part batch file for wav-mp3



but we are veering very far away from the original topic in hand.

i need standalone executables.
if you can help, please post a link to the executable and its documentation.

part 1:

@echo off
FOR /F "tokens=*" %%a IN ('dir /b *.wav') DO wav-mp3 "%%a"
FOR /F "tokens=*" %%a IN ('dir /b *.wave') DO wave-mp3 "%%a"

part 2:
@echo off
set stwav=%1
set stnaked=%stwav:.wave=%
set stmp3=%stnaked%.mp3
lame --preset insane %stwav% %stmp3%
del %stwav%

Open in new window

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ReneGeCommented:
lame.exe is not installed. Along with lame.css, it is copied in either the batch file folder or the system32 folder.

You asked to translate your batch file to exe.

QUESTIONS:
1) Is wav-mp3 a program?
2) In your FOR loop, you put brackets to "%%a".  This tells me that you may possibly have a space in the file names. Then, in your part 2, your lame and del commands, you did not put any brackets. Therefore, the filenames with spaces may not be converted.

BATCH FILE 2 EXE:
http://www.google.ca/#hl=en&source=hp&biw=1483&bih=604&q=bat+2+exe&oq=bat+2+exe&aq=f&aqi=g1g-s1g1g-v4g-b3&aql=&gs_sm=e&gs_upl=3168l5683l0l9l9l0l0l0l0l195l1115l0.7&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.&fp=1399eb2fef836911
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hatheharikenAuthor Commented:
ReneGe:

please understand one thing very clearly!

i DO NOT want to convert a BAT file to an EXE file.
if i didnt know that i would probably google it, instead of asking for it here.

also please read the subject of the question a bit more thoroughly.
it says "command line utilities for audio conversion" not "how to convert BAT 2 EXE"

1) wav-mp3.bat is the part 2 of code
2) in a win 7 environment and also in a server2k8 environment, i have not had any problem till date - but i will keep your thoughts in mind.



i am looking for command line applications to convert the following media formats to WAV
AU
RA
RM
RAM
M4A
MP4
MPGA
OGG
if they are individual apps, it would be better



what part of these above lines is incomprehensible that so much discussion is required is beyond my comprehension.

either you know the answer or a part of it, or you dont.
say so, and thats that.
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dbruntonCommented:
Are portable apps OK?  If so you could run them from a USB stick.

See http://portableapps.com/apps/music_video for a list of media players.

VLC supports command line and transcoding but I'm not sure what formats it can output.   See http://wiki.videolan.org/Transcode for examples.

See http://portableapps.com/news/2007-07-13_-_mplayer_portable_1.0_rc1 

mplayer is listed there as a portable app and a batch file can convert from ogg to wav

See http://www.commandlinefu.com/commands/view/1165/batch-convert-ogg-to-wav for example.

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hatheharikenAuthor Commented:
dbrunton, they have VLC installed.

if vlc plays the file, then vlc can convert it, right?

this makes it so easy.
thanks!
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hatheharikenAuthor Commented:
dbrunton's comment about VLC's internal transcoder helped a lot.

ogg-wav from commandlinefu works like a charm

O!Canada!'s Opus.co.tt is a treasure trove of microapps.

thanks to all of you.
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