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what is PQ coding?
Old 12th May 2008
  #1
Gear Maniac
 

what is PQ coding?

i read something about PQ coding in master,can u tel me more about it?
thanks
iman
Old 12th May 2008
  #2
Lives for gear
 

PQ codes are basically start and stop markers for the CD player to read in order to know where each track begins and (not always necessary) ends.

So PQ codes would be added to the start and end of each of your tracks using a piece of software like Wavelab or Pyramix in order for you to make a PMCD or DDP. Even the basic burning software creates these ie, Nero or Toast but with less control than the two programs I've mentioned.

I'm sure someone will come in and elaborate, but PQ codes are fairly simple and easy to achieve with the right bit of kit.
Old 12th May 2008
  #3
Moderator
 
jayfrigo's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Let me take a moment to type up a PQ primer...

PQ codes refer to 2 of the 8 subcode channels P, Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, that run alongside the audio data on a CD. The P and Q bits contain basic info like track start, pause (end), index, and the basic TOC (Table Of Contents) data. Some other things included are ISRC codes, UPC code, emphasis flag, and copy inhibit flag.

ISRC is short for International Standard Recording Code and is a unique identifier for each track that lists the country of origin, registrant (releasing entity, usually the label), year, and designation code (unique identifier created by the registrant). This code stays with the audio recording for the life of it. Even if it later appears on a compilation, the same ISRC will accompany it.

It is not for the compposition, however, simply the recording. If a new recording of a song is made, it will receive a new ISRC code. In the US the codes are administered by the RIAA. They can help with anti-piracy and royalty collection, though most US radio isn't very good about using the codes. There is better support for them in Europe.

The UPC code is the Universal Product Code, which is essentially the number represented by the barcode on the back of the packaging. These are administered by the UCC, or Uniform Code Council. While an ISRC refers to a single track, the UPC code is for the entire album. Each unique physical product that may be put on a store shelf has a unique code. In addition to the barcode on the back, you can actually encode this into the PQ information.

The code is compatible with the Europenan EAN code, which is why it is often referred to as a UPC/EAN code. The UPC has 12 digits, while the EAN has 13, so if you are encoding a UPC onto the disc, you simply add a leading zero and the rest of the numbers are identical.

Copy Prohibit status and emphasis are less likely to be used much these days. However, early digital recordings did indeed use emphasis, so if you are doing a reissue, compilation, or career retrospective, you may indeed need to know how to deal with pre-emphasis.

CD-Text information (not supported by most players, and not to be confused with CDDB which supplies titles to computer players) is included in one of the other bits (R through W), as is karaoke info, graphics, and other extended features not standard to the original red book CD spec.

Some other "books" besides red include yellow book, which is a data CD (or CD-ROM, often used for DDPi masters), orange book, which is recordable CD, and the extended, +G, and enhanced versions like blue, green, and purple. SACD (Super Audio CD) with its DSD recording is Scarlet book. SACD and DVD are not put on CD media, but rather UDF (Universal Disc Format) higher capacity discs (flavors of DVD).
Old 15th November 2008
  #4
Lives for gear
 
superburtm's Avatar
 

thank you sir thumbsup


Quote:
Originally Posted by jayfrigo View Post
Let me take a moment to type up a PQ primer...

PQ codes refer to 2 of the 8 subcode channels P, Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, that run alongside the audio data on a CD. The P and Q bits contain basic info like track start, pause (end), index, and the basic TOC (Table Of Contents) data. Some other things included are ISRC codes, UPC code, emphasis flag, and copy inhibit flag.

ISRC is short for International Standard Recording Code and is a unique identifier for each track that lists the country of origin, registrant (releasing entity, usually the label), year, and designation code (unique identifier created by the registrant). This code stays with the audio recording for the life of it. Even if it later appears on a compilation, the same ISRC will accompany it.

It is not for the compposition, however, simply the recording. If a new recording of a song is made, it will receive a new ISRC code. In the US the codes are administered by the RIAA. They can help with anti-piracy and royalty collection, though most US radio isn't very good about using the codes. There is better support for them in Europe.

The UPC code is the Universal Product Code, which is essentially the number represented by the barcode on the back of the packaging. These are administered by the UCC, or Uniform Code Council. While an ISRC refers to a single track, the UPC code is for the entire album. Each unique physical product that may be put on a store shelf has a unique code. In addition to the barcode on the back, you can actually encode this into the PQ information.

The code is compatible with the Europenan EAN code, which is why it is often referred to as a UPC/EAN code. The UPC has 12 digits, while the EAN has 13, so if you are encoding a UPC onto the disc, you simply add a leading zero and the rest of the numbers are identical.

Copy Prohibit status and emphasis are less likely to be used much these days. However, early digital recordings did indeed use emphasis, so if you are doing a reissue, compilation, or career retrospective, you may indeed need to know how to deal with pre-emphasis.

CD-Text information (not supported by most players, and not to be confused with CDDB which supplies titles to computer players) is included in one of the other bits (R through W), as is karaoke info, graphics, and other extended features not standard to the original red book CD spec.

Some other "books" besides red include yellow book, which is a data CD (or CD-ROM, often used for DDPi masters), orange book, which is recordable CD, and the extended, +G, and enhanced versions like blue, green, and purple. SACD (Super Audio CD) with its DSD recording is Scarlet book. SACD and DVD are not put on CD media, but rather UDF (Universal Disc Format) higher capacity discs (flavors of DVD).
Old 17th November 2008
  #5
Gear Nut
 
Rappinghood's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jayfrigo View Post
Let me take a moment to type up a PQ primer...

PQ codes refer to 2 of the 8 subcode channels P, Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, that run alongside the audio data on a CD. The P and Q bits contain basic info like track start, pause (end), index, and the basic TOC (Table Of Contents) data. Some other things included are ISRC codes, UPC code, emphasis flag, and copy inhibit flag.

ISRC is short for International Standard Recording Code and is a unique identifier for each track that lists the country of origin, registrant (releasing entity, usually the label), year, and designation code (unique identifier created by the registrant). This code stays with the audio recording for the life of it. Even if it later appears on a compilation, the same ISRC will accompany it.

It is not for the compposition, however, simply the recording. If a new recording of a song is made, it will receive a new ISRC code. In the US the codes are administered by the RIAA. They can help with anti-piracy and royalty collection, though most US radio isn't very good about using the codes. There is better support for them in Europe.

The UPC code is the Universal Product Code, which is essentially the number represented by the barcode on the back of the packaging. These are administered by the UCC, or Uniform Code Council. While an ISRC refers to a single track, the UPC code is for the entire album. Each unique physical product that may be put on a store shelf has a unique code. In addition to the barcode on the back, you can actually encode this into the PQ information.

The code is compatible with the Europenan EAN code, which is why it is often referred to as a UPC/EAN code. The UPC has 12 digits, while the EAN has 13, so if you are encoding a UPC onto the disc, you simply add a leading zero and the rest of the numbers are identical.

Copy Prohibit status and emphasis are less likely to be used much these days. However, early digital recordings did indeed use emphasis, so if you are doing a reissue, compilation, or career retrospective, you may indeed need to know how to deal with pre-emphasis.

CD-Text information (not supported by most players, and not to be confused with CDDB which supplies titles to computer players) is included in one of the other bits (R through W), as is karaoke info, graphics, and other extended features not standard to the original red book CD spec.

Some other "books" besides red include yellow book, which is a data CD (or CD-ROM, often used for DDPi masters), orange book, which is recordable CD, and the extended, +G, and enhanced versions like blue, green, and purple. SACD (Super Audio CD) with its DSD recording is Scarlet book. SACD and DVD are not put on CD media, but rather UDF (Universal Disc Format) higher capacity discs (flavors of DVD).
Though I knew all this, I couldn't have put it better! Copied and pasted for any future email enquiries! Cheers!
Old 17th November 2008
  #6
Lives for gear
 

Jay,

Thanks for such a clear and concise explanation.

Ken Paul
Kengineering
Chicago
Old 17th November 2008
  #7
Lives for gear
 

Actually happened...

Manager / Booker of MAJOR Mastering facility to Mastering Engineer:

"What's the difference between PQ and EQ ?"

Maybe I should get them to read this thread.
Old 1st May 2012
  #8
Lives for gear
 
Piedpiper's Avatar
Reviving this old but excellent thread here to enquire as to the minimum software required to add these codes when mastering. I do all processing in Protools and order and burn discs from iTunes which doesn't accommodate adding these and other codes.
Old 1st May 2012
  #9
Mastering Moderator
 
Riccardo's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by Piedpiper View Post
Reviving this old but excellent thread here to enquire as to the minimum software required to add these codes when mastering. I do all processing in Protools and order and burn discs from iTunes which doesn't accommodate adding these and other codes.
You can add ISRC codes as well as UPC/EAN with Toast. Not sure about copy prohibit flags though, I'll have to check about this. If you also need an editor besides adding codes there is another thread going at the moment mentioning Wavelab, Samplitude, Sonoris, Sonic and a few others......
Old 1st May 2012
  #10
Lives for gear
 
Piedpiper's Avatar
Thanks. posted on that other thread. I just thought this would be a good thread to revive with the addition of this question. I'm happy to do all my editing in Protools; I just need to add the codes. Too bad PT or iTunes doesn't accommodate that... I've just gotten the pressing house to add them...

...forgot to mention Mac only...
Old 1st May 2012
  #11
Mastering Moderator
 
Riccardo's Avatar
 

Verified Member
The latest version of Toast is very good, handles ISRC and CD-Text and is reasonably priced.
Old 1st May 2012
  #12
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Red Mastering's Avatar
 

Verified Member
ddp creator,
or mixture of 2, like cd architect and nero (freeware),
or wavelab and nero
not 100%sure about wlab
but for most jobs I used cd architect and nero and it was fine for redbook master
Old 1st May 2012
  #13
Lives for gear
 
Piedpiper's Avatar
Thanks for that definitive recommendation, Riccardo. Still a pisser I have to pay $99 just to add codes... I wonder why itunes doesn't accommodate that simple addition.
Old 2nd May 2012
  #14
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MASSIVE Master's Avatar
 

Verified Member
iTunes doesn't even correctly author the disc -- Burn a disc in iTunes and play it in a "pro" CD transport and see if it will play (or send one to the plant and wait for the inevitable phone call).**

My experience is about 2/3 or them won't even get past the "spinning" part. Same with WMP and a host of other consumer programs. Others might play for a while and then the TC slips up and it'll just jump to the middle of track 7 with no warning.

Keeping in mind that they might play fine on "fast & loose" drives that are used to data discs and what not -- Car players, boom-boxes, computers, etc.

You don't need to spend the $99 (which is a bargain) to add ISRC's - You need to spend the $99 to author a disc properly.

** Had a client years ago that RIP'd and burned their project in iTunes (instead of simply "copying" it). Sent the disc to the plant. For some odd reason, the plant went ahead and made 2,000 reps of that disc. Sold a bunch of those discs at a show - Found out the next day that most of them wouldn't play. The plant said "Hey, we just reproduced what you sent us" but gave them a helluva deal on replacing them. Which they (the band) did - Manually - opening the wrap and the spine sticker on every one of those CD's.

Long story short - iTunes is not an proper authoring program. It's something to make a quick disc for the car.
Old 2nd May 2012
  #15
Lives for gear
 
Piedpiper's Avatar
hmmm... thanks... I haven't run into that. I used to use my Alesis Masterlink and I suppose I can go back to that, but it's so cumbersome to type info into it...
Old 2nd May 2012
  #16
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by MASSIVE Master View Post
Long story short - iTunes is not an proper authoring program. It's something to make a quick disc for the car.
This exactly. iTunes is a consumer product, with simplicity and ease of use determining the overall design. ISRCs etc are not simple functions but pro features way out of scope for the app.
Old 2nd May 2012
  #17
Lives for gear
 
Jerry Tubb's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Mind your Peas and Queues...

JT
Old 20th January 2018
  #18
Quote:
Originally Posted by jayfrigo View Post
Let me take a moment to type up a PQ primer...

PQ codes refer to 2 of the 8 subcode channels P, Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, that run alongside the audio data on a CD. The P and Q bits contain basic info like track start, pause (end), index, and the basic TOC (Table Of Contents) data. Some other things included are ISRC codes, UPC code, emphasis flag, and copy inhibit flag.

ISRC is short for International Standard Recording Code and is a unique identifier for each track that lists the country of origin, registrant (releasing entity, usually the label), year, and designation code (unique identifier created by the registrant). This code stays with the audio recording for the life of it. Even if it later appears on a compilation, the same ISRC will accompany it.

It is not for the compposition, however, simply the recording. If a new recording of a song is made, it will receive a new ISRC code. In the US the codes are administered by the RIAA. They can help with anti-piracy and royalty collection, though most US radio isn't very good about using the codes. There is better support for them in Europe.

The UPC code is the Universal Product Code, which is essentially the number represented by the barcode on the back of the packaging. These are administered by the UCC, or Uniform Code Council. While an ISRC refers to a single track, the UPC code is for the entire album. Each unique physical product that may be put on a store shelf has a unique code. In addition to the barcode on the back, you can actually encode this into the PQ information.

The code is compatible with the Europenan EAN code, which is why it is often referred to as a UPC/EAN code. The UPC has 12 digits, while the EAN has 13, so if you are encoding a UPC onto the disc, you simply add a leading zero and the rest of the numbers are identical.

Copy Prohibit status and emphasis are less likely to be used much these days. However, early digital recordings did indeed use emphasis, so if you are doing a reissue, compilation, or career retrospective, you may indeed need to know how to deal with pre-emphasis.

CD-Text information (not supported by most players, and not to be confused with CDDB which supplies titles to computer players) is included in one of the other bits (R through W), as is karaoke info, graphics, and other extended features not standard to the original red book CD spec.

Some other "books" besides red include yellow book, which is a data CD (or CD-ROM, often used for DDPi masters), orange book, which is recordable CD, and the extended, +G, and enhanced versions like blue, green, and purple. SACD (Super Audio CD) with its DSD recording is Scarlet book. SACD and DVD are not put on CD media, but rather UDF (Universal Disc Format) higher capacity discs (flavors of DVD).
I know this was a very old thread; however, I just have to say thank you for this information. You were so thorough in your explanation, it answered every question I had about this.

Musically Yours,
Sir Wick
Old 30th January 2018
  #19
Moderator
 
jayfrigo's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by maestrowick View Post
I know this was a very old thread; however, I just have to say thank you for this information. You were so thorough in your explanation, it answered every question I had about this.

Musically Yours,
Sir Wick
Always happy when a post can be helpful!
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