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Technical Questions
What file formats are available on iTrax?
What are the various fidelity levels available on iTrax?
What is the difference between stereo, stage and audience mixes?
How do I download audio and video tracks to my computer/server?
Which operating systems are supported by iTrax?
How do I copy my iTrax content to a disc?
How do I listen to iTrax song files or view video downloads?
How long does it take to download a track?
How do I play the tracks that I've downloaded?
How much hard drive space do I need to store my tracks?
I'm having difficulty logging in to iTrax. How do I resolve the problem?

Q: What file formats are available on iTrax

A: iTrax uses a variety of file formats. Please review the list below:
MP3 - This is the lowest quality and smallest file format that we deliver. Encoding is done at 192 kbps for stereo and 256 kbps for surround (stage and audience mixes) which are reasonable bitrates. The fidelity will be marginal but the stereo files can be loaded onto your portable player and burned onto CDs. A Special MP3 Surround player is needed to play the surround files and is available from the Links section of Help.

Dolby Digital - Otherwise known as AC-3, this is one of the standards used for DVD-Video surround soundtracks. Our files use 448 kbps to deliver 2.0 or 5.1 surround music. Your software player will need to have the appropriate decoder to play these files. Decoders are available for Windows Media Player and for Quicktime. You can often output the Dolby Digital stream from your computer to outboard decoders like A/V receivers and high-end media extenders like the Sqeezebox and Transporter from Slim Devices.
 
DTS - Similar to the files used sometimes on DVD-Video surround soundtracks. DTS files can use up to 1509 kbps and can deliver 2.0 or 5.1 surround music. Our stereo files are encoded at this bitrate (not sold yet). Your software player will need to have the appropriate decoder to play these files. The fidelity is generally considered to be better than Dolby Digital, since it has three times the bitrate of AC-3. Completely different from our strereo DTS files, our surround DTS files are specifically designed to play in specially equipped cars. The files are burned as a regular music CD (Red Book Audio CD) and played in the car's audio system. If you have one of these players in your car, it is easiest way to enjoy discrete 5.1 surround sound while driving. In order to fit these surround files on to the CD media, we had to use 44.1 kHz/16-bit source files and encode them at 754 kbps. This means they will have less fidelity than the other formats listed below, so our DTS files are not the best choice for surround playback at home.

WMA Pro - Windows Media Audio Professional is a compression and decompression method that is a compromise between low fidelity codecs and higher 'lossless' schemes. Files of this type are not outrageously large but do sacrifice some fidelity. The bit-rate for the stereo files is 440 kbps and 768 kbps for the surround files. Though the stereo WMA Pro bit-rate may be less than that of the stereo Dolby Digital files, it is considered better since it utilizes the next generation in encoding technology.

WMA Lossless - A big step up from WMA Pro, the lossless variety of Window Media Audio delivers all of the bits that were in the original source and therefore can accurately reproduce the HD Audio fidelity of the master source audio tracks. The bit-rate varies depending on the complexity of the music. Once decoded, the bit-rate is the same as the 96 kHz/24-bit PCM files, namely 4608 kbps for the stereo files and 13824 kbps for the surround files. This is the best choice for playback of surround audio on a computer or media server.

PCM 96 kHz/24-bits - For the true audiophile [and those with the bandwidth and storage capacity to handle large files], PCM at 96 kHz/24-bits gives you all of the fidelilty of the master. This is the file type used during our production process. The bit-rate for the stereo files is 4608 kbps and 13824 kbps for the surround files.

QT H.264 - This encoding scheme is derived from the MPEG-4 standard and can handle the quality of our content without sacrifice. It is sent in the QuickTime container. You can choose difference sizes of video to use with this codec. 480 and 1080 refer to the lines of horizonal resolution. 480 files are considered standard defintion, even when they were shot using HD cameras. 1080 files will only be offerred when the source was shot using HD cameras.

WMV SD - This encoding scheme uses Microsoft's VC-1 codec and is very good with SD video. If you are interested in playing our video content on a standard definition TV through your media server or computer, this is the file format to use.
 
WMV HD - For customers that have a Windows Media Center Equiped or MCE computer or media server and an HD display, this is the format to use. The files are very large but they bring all of the source quality home to your media space. They are available in 720 and 1080 horizontal lines of resolution. You should download the 1080 files only if their system can play it smoothly, and only if your display can accept a 1080 input.

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Q: What are the various fidelity levels available on iTrax?

A: You can choose between low fidelity MP3 files, Dolby Digital, DTS, Windows Media Professional, Windows Media Lossless and uncompressed 96 kHz/24-bit PCM audio. Only the last two choices maintain the quality of the HD Audio masters. For video files, projects that have the "Shot in HD" logo should be downloaded in either 720p or 1080p, where 1080p will most closely match the quality of the master. Projects captured with Standard Definition cameras will not be offered in HD formats, but can be downloaded at 480p resolution.

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Q: What is the difference between stereo, stage and audience mixes?

A: We offer three distinct mixes for download:
2.0 Channel Stereo - This has been the standard way to deliver music to consumers for 50 years. The music is mixed into a left and right speaker and can reproduce a continuous spread of sound in between the speakers.

5.1 'Audience' Perspective - If you've been to the movies or have a surround sound setup in your home theater, you already know how compelling surround sound can be. For music, the surround speakers can contain the ambience of the room and give you the best seat in the house. This is referred to as the 'Audience' perspective.

5.1 'Stage' Perspective - For many musicians and more open-minded listeners, sitting on the stage in the center of the musicians is the 'best seat in the house'. Until 5.1 surround sound you couldn't experience music in this position. It's a completely new and immersive experience and one definitely worth checking out. The rear speakers are used heavily. The stage perspective works best with large rear speakers.

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Q: How do I download audio and video tracks to my computer/server?

A: Follow these simple steps to download a track or video from iTrax to your computer:
  1. Login to your account by clicking on the "Login" button on the upper right of every page. If you do not have an account, follow the instructions to register and create an account.
  2. Download and install one of the optional, free Download Managers recommended for you operation system. A download manager will allow you to pause and resume your downloads and can increase you download speed.
  3. Find the track(s) or video(s) that you are interested in downloading and select them by clicking on the "Buy" buttons next to the format(s) you want to purchase.
  4. Scroll to the bottom of the album page and click on either "Check Out" or "Continue Shopping" to enter your selections into your "Shopping Cart".
  5. Click on the "Shopping Cart" and review your purchase. Click "Submit" to proceed to checkout.
  6. Enter your payment information and click "Continue". After you information is confirmed, click the link to go to the "Download Center". Click "Start" to copy the files to your on your computer.

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Q: Which operating systems are supported by iTrax?

A: iTrax will work with the following operating systems:
  • Windows 98
  • Windows ME
  • Windows 2000
  • Windows XP
  • Mac OS X
  • MCE
  • Windows Vista (IE7)
Mac OS 9 and Linux may work but are not supported by iTrax. Certain file formats may be incompatible with you hardware and operating system. If you have a dedicated Media Server, please contact us directly for support and compatibility questions.

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Q: How do I copy my iTrax content to a disc?

A: The answer depends on the type of file you are trying to copy and for what purpose. If you are trying to play a file from a DVD-R as a DVD-Video disc or a CD-R as a Red Book CD-Audio disc, this is different then burning files to the recordable media as data files, referred to as DVD-ROM and CD-ROM. Use the instructions in your Burning Software to help you make this choice.
 
iTrax recommends the following programs for disc burning:
For the PC: Roxio's Easy Media Creator, Sonic's RecordNow!, iTunes or Nero (There are many others).
For the Mac: iTunes or Roxio's Toast.
Furthermore, Windows XP, Vista and Mac OS X now have integrated burning software applications.
 
Follow these steps to create CD of your iTrax 2-channel MP3 content:
  1. Make sure you have downloaded the MP3 files to your hard drive.
  2. Open your CD burning software.
  3. Use the CD burner software to add the files to your blank CD or drag and drop MP3s into your CD blank.
  4. Record the CD.
  5. Note: Some older CD players will not play MP3 files from a CD-ROM or CD-Audio disc.
Another good reference for questions regarding CD burning is the The CD-R Faq. See the Links section of Help.
The Stereo MP3 files are the only files that we sell that can be played back on a CD-Audio disc through a Stereo system.

If you're interested in burning the 5.1 Dolby Digital tracks to a DVD-Video disc, follow these steps:
  1. Make sure you have downloaded the 5.1 Dolby Digital files to your hard drive.
  2. Open up your DVD authoring software (Some versions of Nero software will do this).
  3. Use the DVD authoring software to create a DVD-Video disc with no video and the Dolby Digital files as the soundtrack.
  4. Mux and burn the DVD-Video image. Note: Dummy Video will be created.
Notes on 5.1 Files in general:
  1. See the Guides section of Help for more details.
  2. The 5.1 MP3 files can only be played on a computer at this time.
  3. Our 5.1 files cannot be burned to a CD-R as an CD-Audio disc with the exception of the DTS-CD tracks (see below)
  4. Any of our 5.1 tracks can be placed on a recordable DVD-R by recording as a DVD-ROM project, but few players can play them directly of the disc.
  5. Any of our 5.1 channel tracks can also be burned onto a CD-R as a CD-ROM project as well.
  6. Our 5.1 WMA, 5.1 WMV, and our 96kHz/24-bit/5.1ch PCM files cannot be authored as a DVD-Video project, as these formats are incompatible with the DVD-Video specification.
  7. Our specially prepared 5.1 DTS files can be burned as CD-Audio discs on CD-R media, but will only play on specially designed players, often found in stock automotive systems.
  8. Our 5.1 96 kHz/24-bit PCM files can be played in some Media Players.

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Q: How do I listen to iTrax song files or view video downloads?

A: After you have used the "Download Center" to acquire the tracks/videos, please reference the Guides section of Help. You can follow these instructions to play the files:

Adding downloads to Winamp
  1. Click on 'File' in the top left corner of the main Winamp window
  2. Click 'Add Media to Library' symbol next to 'Desktop' to display all the files and
    folders on your computer's desktop
  3. Select the 'My iTrax' folder
  4. Click 'OK' to import your new downloads
  5. Click here to download the latest version of Winamp

Adding downloads to iTunes
  1. Open iTunes
  2. Click on 'File' in the top left corner of iTunes
  3. Click 'Add Folder to Library'
  4. Select the 'My iTrax' folder
  5. Click 'OK' to import your new downloads

Adding downloads to Windows Media Player
  1. Click on 'File' in the top left corner of the program
  2. Click 'Add to Library'
  3. Click 'Add Folder'
  4. Select the 'My iTrax' folder
  5. Click 'OK' to import your new downloads

Adding downloads to RealPlayer
  1. Click on 'File' in the top left corner of the program
  2. Click 'Add Files to My Library'
  3. Click on 'Desktop' in the left hand side of the window
  4. Select the 'My iTrax' folder and click 'Open'
  5. Select the name of the artist you would like to import and click 'Open'
  6. Select the name of the album you would like to import and click 'Open'
  7. Select the files you would like to import and click 'Open' to import your new downloads
Note: Many of the formats that we sell cannot be played in these applications. Please see the Guides section of Help for more details.
Q: How long does it take to download a track?

A: The answer to this question depends on your connection speed, the size of the files, network traffic and your particular ISP service. Obviously, the smaller MP3 files can be downloaded in a matter of minutes while the 200 MB lossless WMA files can take several hours. For those individuals with problematic service, iTrax offers a hard drive program to get large amounts of data to our customers. Please contact us for additional information.

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Q: How do I play the tracks that I've downloaded?

A: Your normal computer playback software [either Windows Media Player, Winamp, Quicktime, iTunes and VLC] should work. For some formats, specialized players or plug-ins are required. Please see the Guides or Links section of Help for more details.
Q: How much hard drive space do I need to store my tracks?

A: The size required for your downloaded files will depend on the options that you've selected. MP3 files will require very little storage and lossless WMA files will require much more. You should be prepared to have multiple Gigabytes or more available on your hard drive or array to store iTrax HD Audio and Video content.

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Q: I'm having difficulty logging in to iTrax. How do I resolve the problem?

A: Please read the list of suggestions below, make any required changes and try logging in again. If you continue to have trouble please contact iTrax Customer Service at Contact us.
  • Make sure you are using the correct email address and password for your iTrax account. Please also note that passwords are case sensitive. For example, using "A" is different than using "a".
  • You can request your Password if you have forgotten it in the Login section.
  • Make sure that the date and time on your computer are correct.
  • If you are using firewall software such as ZoneAlarm or Norton Internet Security make sure the program is set to allow cookies from www.iTrax.com.
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