How to Record a CD on a Computer-Based System

By Jeff Strong

If you’re using a computer-based system, recording a CD is as simple as opening your software and following the program’s directions for making a CD. Some systems, such as computer-based programs, allow you to dither your mix separately, before you record your CD. This approach is highly recommended because it gives you a chance to hear the dithered music before you commit it to disc.

If your system doesn’t support this approach, make sure that you compare your disc with the original mix file. (Actually, you should always check your recorded CD to make sure it plays properly and sounds good.) You’ll hear a slight difference in sound, but that’s what happens when you go from the 24-bit to the 16-bit format.

If you have a CD recorder program, such as CD Creator, Jam, Toast, or Wavelab, recording your CD is easy. Recording a CD with any of these programs gives you quite a bit of flexibility in organizing your songs and placing space between them.

You generally just click the Add Track button on the main screen and select the track you want to add. You may also be prompted to choose any silence that you want to place before the track as well as ISRC codes (unique identifiers for each song on your CD) and PQ subcode information.

A PQ subcode is additional information added to the CD data that includes start and stop times for each track, among other things. When you have all your tracks assembled, you can record your CD. Pretty simple, huh?