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Archive for April, 2008

Visual MP3 Splitter & Joiner

April 14th, 2008 No comments

Cool MP3 Cutter with Silence Detection

As the name suggests, Visual MP3 Splitter & Joiner promises to split our MP3 files visually. This means that the program should be able to build the waveform of our MP3 file, and we will be able to select parts to split directly on the waveform. Nice. Let’s see how this really works.

Downloading and installing the program went without problems, smooth. We were able to set necessary options, for example, we preferred to install a desktop shortcut, but no other shortcuts. Some programs automatically install all possible shortcuts, which is quite maddening. Thumb up here.

After installing itself, Visual MP3 Splitter & Joiner offered to launch itself. Well, that’s what we were installing it for, after all. Again, a nice option. Affirmative.

Now the program starts. A splash screen shows up, then almost immediately we see a window telling that we’ve got an evaluation version. Yes, we know that, it’s OK. We click "Launch trial version".

The reminder is replaced by the main window.

We see a warning that no file is loaded. Let’s follow the instruction to click "Add file".

Aha, it’s the usual "Open" dialog. We select our MP3 album that we would like to split. But hey, look at the supported formats:

The splitter claims to support MP3, WAV, WMA, and APE audio formats, and also CUE sheets. CUE sheet is a file that contains information about tracks (start/end time, titles, artists etc.), it’s the best way to split large MP3 files. We do have a CUE sheet to our MP3 album, but for now let’s check other features.

So, we open our MP3 file. What next?

The waveform is there, but we also see the hint telling us to click left button to set start and right button to set end. Let’s try it.

After a few seconds of experimenting we like this method of selecting parts. It allows very precise placing of start/end points. If you need to change start time, scroll the waveform to the required area and left-click the waveform. To change end time, right-click waveform. To start playing the file, double-click the waveform.

Once a part is selected, we are obviously supposed to click "Add". This adds our part to the split list.

Well, visual splitting is OK. But we notice the "Silence detection" tab and switch to it.

In our album, there are usual pauses between songs. Let’s try to run the silence recognition tool to see if it detects the songs correctly.

Without giving it another thought, we click "Add".

The program analyzes the file and populates its split list. We check the parts using the built-in player – they are correct.

As next, we check how the program actually splits the MP3 file. Obviously we should click "Split" on the toolbar.

Splitting goes quickly, which is a good sign. This means that the program doesn’t recompress our file (recompressing leads to quality losses). After splitting the program offers to open the output folder, and we do that to check the split files once again by playing them in Windows Media Player. They are OK.

We remove the split files and try splitting our MP3 by the CUE file. It goes smoothly, too, and we are pleased to see that the program uses titles, track numbers, and other information from our CUE sheet.

It seems that the user doesn’t need too many instructions when working with the program, but we press "F1" anyway.

The help is detailed, everything is sorted by topics. Even some additional information is present, like "What is CUE Sheet?" and "What Are ID3 Tags?" sections (we did notice the small ID3 tag editor, but we didn’t expect to find a section devoted to ID3 tags in general). Very good.

Let’s summarize our experience with the program:

  • Interface: easy to operate, hints, every feature is visible. However: the "Add" button is placed perfectly for entering time, but is too far from the waveform for visual splitting (maybe another button with the same functionality should be added). Also, building the waveform is slow, if one wants to display the whole file at once (the program defaults to a small part of the file with the possibility to scroll to the rest of it, which should be considered as the recommended setting). 8
  • Features: splitter and joiner in one program, WAV, MP3, WMA, APE support, can split MP3 using CUE sheets, can create CUE sheets, waveform, visual splitting, silence detection, splitting by equal parts or time, ID3 tag editor (information is automatically taken from the source file or from the CUE file), no re-encoding when splitting MP3 files, possible to extract intersecting parts, built-in player. 10
  • Documentation: detailed help, plenty of information. 10
  • Compatibility: ran on Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Vista 32 bit, Windows Vista 64 bit. No issues. 10

Web-site
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  1. Introduction.
  2. Visual MP3 Splitter & Joiner.
  3. MEDA MP3 Splitter.
  4. MP3 Cutter Joiner.
  5. MP3 EasySplitter.
  6. MP3 Splitter & Joiner.
  7. MP3 Splitter.
  8. Power MP3 Cutter Joiner.
  9. Slice.
  10. The Best MP3 Splitter.
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