CDEXtremely Easy-to-make Music Collections on Your HDD

very good
key review info
  • Application: CDex 1.70 Beta 2
  • Reviewed on:
  • Written by:
application features
  • Easy to use interface
  • (6 more, see all...)

When you get to pay 30 dollars on the fresh-out CD of your fav artist it's quite likely that you'd like to hear it all day long at least for a while. And if when it comes to home listening or while driving to/from work, playing that very CD is quite an easy and simple thing to do, doing the same when jogging or biking or simply traveling through the city or even country is rather not, especially as you don't want to carry the big Discman and instead wearing the small, lightweight and cozy flash-MP3 player or even listening to your favorite music from your own smartphone.

And when it comes to this, a simple question also pops up: "What do I do?" Of course the answer is more than obvious and it means turning the audio content of the CD in a digital format so you can enjoy it almost everywhere. MP3 or WMA, even OGG or other popular formats will let you experience music you like most in almost any place you'll go, while not straining the original "investment" in the physical CD or exposing it to the perils of traveling. So, grab a CD-ripping tool and start constructing your MP3 collection.

The Looks

CDex is nowhere near the cool-looking CD-ripping tools as it is "more to the tasks" than to the GUI; looking Spartan yet almost professional, very intuitive and despite the multitude of buttons - easy to use.

CDex is basically one window which can be set to the size you need and the most important feature is that the tracklist is large enough to let you see the full extent of the longest song names, along with additional data regarding length, position on the disc, playing times and many more.

A full set of transport command buttons is available at the top of the main window (including FFW and REW!!) so you can easily move "through" the tracks you plan to rip. At the right side of the screen very handy icons have been placed for quick-jumping directly to a certain preset action-type such as converting audio to a certain digital format, compressed or not, conversion between different file formats, CDDB query and so on.

As these icons are quite nicely-designed, even those users who haven't had previous experience in CD-ripping will easily carry on the tasks required by their needs: not only are the icons depicting very well the course of actions, but also very handy labels are quickly displayed, so it is really very hard to make mistakes.

With no skins and no color options, CDex is though a nice and eye-comforting software with easy to use and as well easy to understand menus and commands, all designed in a rather minimal but highly functional style.

The Works

Being a program developed for both inexperienced users and people who are already acquainted to CD-ripping, it has very simple functioning: the experienced users will simply go straight to where they already know "the buttons must be pressed" without paying too much attention to the rest, while beginners have the chance to read the menus and hints and get familiarized with what CD-ripping is about.

CDex's works are very simple: you just insert an audio CD and CDex will automatically read its content, displaying available data. Should this data not be available, all you have to do is press one button and query the databases on the web, provided you have already set up the proper fields in the Options menu. After all, things are OK; you can rename files according to your own wishes or batch-rename them using a preset algorithm you decide.

Extracting the data on the CD can be made to WAV or other formats you choose in the Options menu; there are the most popular formats available, supplemented by some others like APE, Yamaha VQF and so on, technically letting you obtain almost the exact file after processing. Needless to say that you can even set up portions of songs to be converted, set up quality and samplerate and basically everything you might think of when encoding a song.

ID-tagging is well supported, and there's also a large set of options regarding the CD drive meant for the experienced users (spin times, ripping method etc); local and/or remote CDDB settings allow you to search as effectively as possible for ID regarding the files you are about to convert, so you will not be forced to enter large amounts of data manually.

As far as I have noticed, the CDex works fast enough to be counted with the "very usable" similar softwares and this is a really good point. You even get a built-in media player so you can instantly know the going of your actions. For the standard encoding I guess that CDex is one of the "fit" softwares; it is just perfect for the beginners, if they accept starting with the defaults of the program and not attempting to set it up like a pro.

The Good

The best thing is that CDex is a very easy-to-use program when no high-science is needed and it also lacks futile add-ons which may confuse the inexperienced users; overall, CDex is one easy-to-use software.

The Bad

If pro-grade results are expected it's very likely that CDex will not be able to provide them.

The Truth

One thing I can say about the CDex (and really believe it's pure truth) is that anyone will be able to use it in no time and get good results without having to spend whole days to find out how it works or wait indefinitely for the processing to end. As well, the CDex will also help you easily move your tracks between various formats suiting your needs.

Take a look at the screenshots below:

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user interface 4
features 4
ease of use 5
pricing / value 5

final rating 4
Editor's review
very good