Need Best Audio Codec (one for all)


Sep 5, 2012
1- I Have Huge Music Archive which I have gathered eventually in years and most of them are converted from my older Audio Cd's.

I'm mostly spending time on organizing and categorizing Music folders, names, release years, Genres & .... for every album and folder one by one!.because most of the songs data's have been lost during conversion.

Even with software like (Tag scanner) which is so helpful but still, it's a huge ton of work to do like, rewriting some of songs names, wiping additional and unuseful file data's, gathering lyrics of songs (every album lyrics and cover in its own folder and... (I know right now you are thinking "what a Geek!")
but I love to have the best-organized music files and folders.
Can you guide me and show me the best software for such a thing?

2- and at last:
why windows main multimedia player (WMP) is incomplete?
I mean many other simple and smaller players are much more practical and useful like, (KMP - VLC ) and ...
I believe the main cause of that is incomplete codec's which guides us to install additional codec packs!
what would be your suggestion if I wish to use (WMP) as my default player and make it work correctly! and make it able to read all video and audio codecs.
on the other hand, I would like to have kind of "master codec" which work for all other multimedia apps and software without any confliction.
do you suggest K-Light Mega Codec pack?

Thank you for your time.
If most of your music is from audio CDs and you have plenty of storage, you should probably be storing them as FLACs. Audio CDs store uncompressed raw audio (the record labels didn't want to compress it because people would then start to question why there's only 40 minutes of music on a CD which can hold 6 hours). FLAC is compressed, but non-lossy. So it's a pristine copy of the original CD file. The only disadvantage is that FLAC files are a lot bigger (about 1/3 to 1/2 the size of the raw CD files). But you can always convert them to MP3 or something else if you need a smaller version for a portable device.

The program you use for metadata like tag scanner isn't as important as the database it uses. I haven't done this in several years, but there were several public databases of metadata for songs. I always used Exact Audio Copy to rip the CDs, and it would automatically tag the resulting files using data from one of these databases.

WMP is probably incomplete because a lot of codec algorithms are covered by patents, or copyrights for the codec itself. If Microsoft wants to include the codec in Windows, they would have to pay a licensing fee for every copy of Windows sold. So they leave out the codec, and the end user can pay for the codec if they really need it. The public codec packs usually use free (open source) versions of the codecs, or just ignore patents on the algorithms (the codecs are written by programmers in countries where the patents don't apply).

K-Lite is a good codec pack, though I've mainly used it for the video codecs. But no codec pack is perfect. It's also important to understand that codec packs like K-lite install codecs onto Windows. Any Windows program which plays video or audio then uses those codecs. So there's no point trying different video and audio programs to play the same file because they're all using the same codecs. If WMP can't play it, none of your other programs will be able to play it. The exception is VLC - it doesn't use Windows' codecs. It uses its own built-in codecs. So it's a good idea to have VLC installed in addition to your favorite regular media program like WMP. Sometimes VLC can play something WMP can't, and vice versa.


Oct 3, 2012
There is no "one codec to rule them all" and there is no "one codec pack to rule all codec packs" either. Codecs get replaced by newer ones as requirements and equipment changes, and newer versions of each codec are also released, for those that are still being developed. Solandri gave a good explanation that, Windows Media Player is not incomplete at all, it simply doesn't ship with every codec under the sun, the same as every other media playback software, as there are intellectual property concerns surrounding many codecs. It's up to you to complete codec support on your computer, not the other way around.

For my own purposes, I'm still quite happy with Windows Media Center as far as my music collection goes, using Windows Media Lossless as the compression of choice. At one point I was using the lossless Monkey's Audio format due to it's better size after compression than the likes of FLAC and the other lossless formats, and doing all the extraction with EAC (Exact Audio Copy), but platform support, overhead, long term software support, ease of use, and large amounts of storage for what I consider reasonable pricing made me switch to Windows Media Lossless. Windows Media Player automatically converts formats when syncing with compatible devices, so I don't have to worry about that either. Metadata, other than lyrics is almost always handled by WMC, and I so seldom look at lyrics, a quick internet search is all that's needed for that.

If you are trying to house all of your media, both audio and video in one program, that's a bigger issue. I'm not sure any one program has done that satisfactorily yet. At least, none that I would consider worth shoehorning all media into. Personally, I tend to use whatever player handles the format best, whether it's HD content, TV, or audio. VLC is fine for some things, but it's too buggy and clunky to be any sort of main media player in my opinion.
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