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Force Mac Mini CD drive to slow down?

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by dops7107, Mar 19, 2005.

  1. macrumors 6502a


    Hi all,

    Real Mac newbie here. I love the Mini, slick and good-looking. Just one bit of grief though. I have the standard CD-RW/DVD drive, and while DVDs play nice and quietly, playing music CDs through iTunes is a real chore. The drive is so loud it really detracts from the music, and makes my desk vibrate! Seeing that CD playback only requires 1x speed, and DVDs can play slow enough, why does iTunes seem to play CDs at max pace? Crazy.

    So, my question: short of burning all my CDs to the hard drive in iTunes (not keen - takes time and wastes space - why have the music in two places?), is there any way to "force" the CD drive to play at a lower speed for playback?

    Thanks for any tips you can give.
    dops :)
  2. macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

    Look you need to put all your CDs in itunes as mp3s and stop playing games with cds. Take some time and do it! it isnt going to use that much space. Playing music from cds is like playing music from 8 tracks? Then after you can put away all those cds and enjoy itunes and the music.
  3. Moderator emeritus


    Exactly what I used to think till I started using iTunes properly.

    Advantages: Immediate access to any tune in your collection, ability to make your own compilations (playlists), protects your CDs by exposing them to fewer chances of accidental damage... I could go on.

    If they're ripped to AAC 192, you may find the file sizes & sound quality acceptable and one day, you may want an iPod so you can listen to your music on the move.

    You can rip them in batches of 5-10 at a time while you're doing other things on the Mac, there's no need to do them all at once.
  4. macrumors 604


    You can setup iTunes to automatically rip the CD, encode as AAC or MP3, and save to your HD. And it can do automatically as batches, so the only thing you ever need to do keep feeding it CDs. iTunes will automate everything else.
  5. macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

    Make sure you are connected to the net while importing so when your music goes into itunes you can have itunes use the song database to have all the names,titles of songs artist album etc. instead of song 1 2 3 etc After moving my music to itunes i havent listened to a cd in a long time. Its a lot of hassle for me now to bother with opening a cd case when i can click my mouse and be on any of a thousand songs.
  6. macrumors 603


    I am still interested about the other part of the question. Is it possible to slow down the CD drive?

    I don't like that the CD drive spins up to maximum speed just to read the table of contents of a CD (or whatever it is doing). I'm mostly concerned about data CDs. The CD drive is so noisy compared to the normal silence of the Mac mini.
  7. macrumors 6502a


    Thanks for your quick replies.

    Well yes I appreciate the advantages of ripping the music, and I'll probably go that route when I get round to it. But that does defeat the point - I want a quiet CD drive, which isn't asking too much. I'm more curious than anything - I tend to listen to music through my hi-fi anyway - which unfortunately is the other side of the room or I would plug my Mini into it!
  8. macrumors 6502a


    I remember reading about a program that did this for Windows. You could limit the speed of the drive to what ever you wanted. The idea behind it was to make the drive last longer by not making it spin up so fast thus reducing the time it takes to read the cd and so on.

    Unfortunately I have not seen a program like this for the Mac. That doesn't mean it doesn't exist.

    NOTE: the program for Windows played with some very important settings of the drive. If something went wrong then your drive could be deemed useless.
  9. macrumors 6502


    The speed that the optical drive spins at is controlled by the firmware in the drive itself, not by iTunes or the OS. Without hacking the firmware and then reflashing it, there would be no way to change the speed that the drive read's CD's.

    I have heard of several hacked firmware's that unlock a drives DVD read limit (for faster DVD ripping), but never for slowing down the CD rate. Your best option by far would just be to extract the CD's into MP3's or AAC's.

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