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Zappateers
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Joined: 2004-06-24
Posts: 47
Location: Zappateers Forum/Tracker
Post 2005-07-18 17:13   [Quote] 
An Introduction to the Zappateers Tracker

You can get loads of Frank Zappa live recordings for free!

Having said audience recordings and bootlegs are always second-best,
you may wonder why we bother with all this stuff.
Well the best thing about FZ live recordings is that there is rarely a bad performance -
as anyone whoever saw FZ live knows the ‘The Band Were Tight’.
The only thing that distracts from your listening pleasure is the actual quality of the recordings
which vary from the FZ sanctioned recordings on a Professional Mobile Recording Studios,
to the mono cassette recorder hidden under someone’s jacket.

The Zappateers urge you not to part with your hard earned cash for anything other than the official releases.
Bootlegs can be obtained from the internet completely free of charge – and here’s how….

The Zappateers Tracker is a method of distributing audience recordings via the internet.
This is a modern internet-age version of the old trade by mail ‘loop’.
This means you can download live recordings of Frank Zappa to your own PC and make your own CD’s and avoid paying any money to any cheesy auction merchant.

The Zappateers Tracker does not actually store any files,
but enables file transfer between users via a protocol known as bit-torrents.

In order to do so you need several things – a high speed connection to the internet (56kbps modems simply don’t cut it),
plenty of hard disc space, and some bit-torrent software.
You may have to pay for your internet connection and your hard drives, but all the rest is free.

Once you have registered on the Zappateers tracker, you can start downloading.
But before you can listen to the music there is a bit more work you need to do.
The Zappateers Tracker is strictly for lossless files – that is files at the standard CD sampling rate of 44.1khz or higher.

MP3 or WMV files are considerably smaller than the electronic standard CDA, WAV or AIFF files.
But to achieve this compression, the smaller files loose considerable amounts of data.
In simple terms this means MP3s, WMAs and RA files sound worse.
This can be especially noticeable when you are dealing with poor quality recordings to begin with.

But WAV and AIFF files are very large, so The Zappateers use Free Audio Lossless Compression (abbreviated to FLAC)
to transfer music files at around 1/3 of the size of the uncompressed CDA, WAV or AIFF but with no loss in quality.

FLAC files must be decompressed (a similar process to using Zip files) before they can be played – but there are FLAC plug-ins for WinAmp and Nero.
There are alternative lossless compression formats to FLAC – click here for an overview of the main formats.

Be Warned: The Zappateers do not allow any official releases to be seeded via the tracker.
Any user seeding official release will be immediately banned.
See the full Tracker FAQ for details.

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