K3b - The CD/DVD Kreator for Linux - optimized for KDE - licensed under the GPL
K3b 0.12 New Features

K3b 0.12 includes some cool new feature of which some are quite hidden. So here I try to unravel the secret powers that lie within K3b 0.12.

The Audio Project

Let's start with the audio project which has been nearly completely rewritten.

Audio CD Tracks

It is now possible to drag tracks from an audio CD directly into an audio project. To use this feature left click the device containing the audio CD just as if you wanted to rip tracks to mp3 or ogg-vorbis and then simply drag the tracks you want in your compilation into the audio project (see the screenshot below). You can even use tracks from different audio CDs. K3b will ask you to insert the CDs when burning the audio project.

Multiple track sources

In K3b 0.12 the audio tracks in an audio project may consist of several audio sources. The default case when adding an audio file to an audio project (like dropping an mp3 file into the project) is a track with a single file source. But it's also possible to add other sources to a track. One special source that is the silence source which is added via the context menu of a track.

Tracks with multiple sources may be created in different ways:

  • Drag files onto the track and wait a few moments until the track reveals it's source. Then drop it before or after the already existing track source. Now the track consists of two files.
  • Select two or more tracks and use the context menu to merge the tracks into one. Note that you can also convert a track source into a track the same way.

The next screenshot shows an audio project with a hidden track like one finds on many music CDs these days. It is created using two file sources and a long silence source (the lenght of a silence source can be changed directly in the audio project list view). As you can see the track length is a sum of the length of the single sources.

The new Pregap handling

Up to K3b 0.11 pregaps in an audio project were created as additional silence. That was not the best way to handle it. K3b 0.12 treats pregaps as what they really are: simple index ranges. The pregap on an audio CD does not influence the music on it in any way (if burned with the DAO writing mode which is the default in K3b) except that your Hifi CD Player will count backwards on audio blocks with an index of -1 (which is the index for the pregap). So now K3b uses the last 2 seconds of a track as the default pregap like it is defined in the Red book standard. If you want additional silence between the tracks like it was possible with older K3b versions use the silence sources described above.

Improved Auto Writing Speed Mode

If you select Auto for the writing speed in the audio project K3b 0.12 tries to determine the maximum possible writing speed for that project. That means it checks how fast the audio tracks can be converted. This tends to be a little below the actual max but it guarantees for no buffer underruns.
K3b 0.11 simply chose the maximum possible writing speed of the writer with the inserted medium.

Convert Audio Projects

In addition to burning an audio project K3b 0.12 now also allows to convert the project into any audio format supported by K3b. It uses a dialog similar to the one for audio track ripping and supports the same features like file naming patterns.
This feature can be used to convert a bunch of audio files into the desired one.

Audio Cue file handling

An audio cue file is a big audio file (for example an mp3 file) and a text file describing the offsets of the audio tracks in the audio file.
K3b 0.12 now has full support for these kind of images. You can import them into an audio project which will give you full control of the image (like removing tracks or moving track around or even adding additional tracks). Or you can simply write them to CD as they are using the Burn CD Image tool.
K3b 0.12 is also able to create audio cue files both for ripped audio tracks or converted audio projects.

The Data Project

The Data project has not been improved as much as the audio project but there are some small things that are worth mentioning.

The Automatic Multisession Handling

When creating multisession CDs in K3b prior to 0.12 you had to always keep in mind to set the multisession mode properly since otherwise K3b would default to close the CD.

K3b 0.12 has a new automatic mode which decides which multisession mode to use. K3b does this based on the size of the project, the remaning space on the target CD (or DVD), and of course the data on the target CD. If the project would fill up the CD K3b will close it. Otherwise leave it open to allow other sessions. If the CD already contains a session and has enough space for the project K3b creates a new session and again closes the CD if the new session fills up the CD or leaves it open otherwise.

Misc stuff

New more clean theme design

With K3b 0.12 I introduced a better theme design. If you like to create a theme for K3b (which I would really like :) you can take a look at this K3b Theme Howto.

Session Management

K3b 0.12 has full session management. That means you can savely log out without caring about K3b's opened projects. They will be restored exactly the way you left them once you log in again.

I hope this helps in making K3b more user friendly. Have fun using K3b... :)

Sebastian Trüg

K3b is developed by:

Michał Małek
Developer (Current Maintainer)

Sebastian Trueg
Developer (Project Creator)

Christian Kvasny
Developer

Gianluca Varisco
Package Manager

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