• Listen to MusicGiants SuperHD on a Mac

    The topic of converting files has been popular lately. The most recent request in to Computer Audiophile is for instructions to convert DRM-Free SuperHD downloads from MusicGiants so they work in iTunes on a Mac. Standard MusicGiants HD downloads are easy to convert. Add them to your iTunes library and they'll convert on the fly. What's different about the SuperHD content? These albums have much higher resolution such as 24 bit / 88.2 kHz or 24/96. Most conversion methods downsample the files to 16 bit / 44.1 kHz, thus negating the reason most people purchase SuperHD content. The conversion method outlined in this article is so easy you won't believe it. If you know how to double-click you're in luck. Read more for all the details.

    First Things First
    Let's get one item out of the way first. This conversion method only works for DRM-Free wma files. I am sure there is a way to convert files with DRM, but I'm not real interested in that and it would probably come with a letter from the RIAA or some similar organization. The conversion method outlined below is mainly for SuperHD music from MusicGiants because almost all of the albums are DRM-Free and at least 24/88.2. As I mentioned earlier, if you have wma files at a lower resolution like 16/44.1 you'll just need to add them directly to your iTunes library and the conversion happens on the fly.

    1. A Windows computer or virtual machine of some sort. This is required to purchase the music and convert it for use on your Mac.
    2. The Windows Media Audio Lossless to Wave Converter from Microsoft.
    3. A SuperHD download from MusicGiants without DRM

    Here we go
    Initially I wrote up somewhat long instructions with several commands that needed to be run from the Windows command line. Then I came to my senses and decided to create a single file for readers to double-click on that will do the whole conversion for them. If you want the instructions for converting this music manually send me an email and we'll work something out.

    Executive Summary
    Download my zip file. Install the Lossless to Wave converter. Buy SuperHD album. Copy new tracks to C:Music. Run the script file in my download and your done.

    Step by Step
    1. Download this Zip file containing the conversion tool and my automated conversion script.

    2. Unzip the downloaded file and install the Windows Media Audio Lossless to Wave Converter by running the file named wmal2pcm_setup.exe

    3. Purchase a SuperHD DRM-Free download from MusicGiants.

    4. Create a folder on your C: drive called Music. To do this open My Computer, double-click on your C: drive and create the folder right there. (On Windows XP you can select File >> New >> Folder, once you are in My Computer.)

    5. Copy your freshly downloaded SuperHD wma files into this new folder called Music. Don't move a complete folder in here, just copy the wma files to the Music folder.

    6. Double-click the other file you downloaded from here named wma-to-wav.bat. This will convert all the music for you and output the new WAVE files into a new folder named music-wav right on your C: drive. As the files are converting you will see the progress of each conversion. When the whole album has been converted the new folder containing all the WAVE files will automatically open up for you to see.

    Optional: Once this is done the files will work great on your Mac in iTunes. if you want to take it one step further, I always do, use the Max application to convert the WAVE files to AIFF files. The AIFF files have much better support for meta data and cover art. If you need assistance converting the WAVE files into AIFF files using the Max application please read the following article http://www.computeraudiophile.com/node/519.


    This is what the conversion process looks like:

    MusicGiants On Mac SuperHD
    click to enlarge
    Comments 2 Comments
    1. The Computer Audiophile's Avatar
      The Computer Audiophile -
      Hi Carl - Thanks a lot for the info! A while back I tried db poweramp to convert these files but it always downsampled from 24/88.2 to 16/44.1! I am very excited to see there is an easier way to do this that I overlooked. I'l be firing up my Windows XP install on Parallels / Boot Camp to give it a shot.<br />
      <br />
      <br />
      Thanks again Carl!
    1. carlseibert's Avatar
      carlseibert -
      That, or it would do the sample rate right but chop the word length down to 16 bit. That's where the "XP or Media Center only" warning came from. Sadly, we just couldn't get it to work correctly on Windows 2000, which has obvious appeal for virtual machines, since it doesn't "phone home". But on XP, it works.<br />
      <br />
      Foobar 2000 is a dandy player, and it has a transcoding function, but it downsampled everything, if I remember right.<br />
      <br />
      Switch is nice and is available for both Mac and PC, but it "helpfully" downsampled whether I wanted it to or not, as well. <br />
      <br />
      I guess high res is still something of a brave new world.<br />
      <br />
      -Carl<br />
      <br />