Ask about using mp3 & ogg

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Raindropmemory
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Ask about using mp3 & ogg

#1 Post by Raindropmemory » Wed Apr 18, 2007 5:06 am

Well, just asking another times for sure and clear mind to work :D

I’m now working on my project and think about the sound and music I will use in my game. I read some topic and it said that I can use Mp3 music in my game freely, just to convert it to Ogg Vorbis format.

Is that so easy :shock: !!? Just convert it and I can use it? Am I right? (Well, if yes, why it is so easy? :? )

Thanks!!

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#2 Post by denzil » Wed Apr 18, 2007 6:08 am

If you have the music in mp3 format there is no need to convert it - Ren'Py can play mp3 music/sounds and there would be probably some quality lost in the conversion. But if you can get it in some uncompressed format or you can choose the format the ogg format is preferred - it's higher quality for the same size or smaller for the same quality.
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#3 Post by Kakurady » Wed Apr 18, 2007 6:09 am

Uh... if you don't have the artist's permission, you can't use the music (legally). (Or you'll become a pirate.)

And you should never transcode from MP3 to Ogg/Vorbis (or between any lossy formats for that matter), as the sound quality will degrade.
To ensuret the best quality, try encode your music from the original, uncompressed file (e.g. .WAV), into Ogg/Vorbis(it sounds somewhat better than MP3, especially under low bitrates).

Of course with the right software the conversion will be resonably painless, but it will still sound worse than the original MP3.
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#4 Post by Raindropmemory » Wed Apr 18, 2007 9:06 am

Oh, Thanks!

How sad that I can't use my favorite music in the game!! T-T
and receive the permission from artist....(can't imagine)

Well, what about MIDI? (MIDI is very crappy of course!), but some tune is not that bad and maybe I can convert it to Ogg. The Question is, did MIDI have a license? Can I use it freely without being pirate.

Anyway, where did you get your music, except compose the new one?

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#5 Post by PyTom » Wed Apr 18, 2007 9:26 am

The file format (MIDI, MP3, or OGG) doesn't matter much... if you don't have permission, then you're not allowed to use the music. (Also, we dropped midi support a while back.)

Kakurady >>> It often makes sens to transcode music, if you're going from a higher bitrate to a lower bitrate. OGG music is often decent at fairly low bitrates, and it makes sense to take advantage of that to lower the size of the final distribution. Sure, it's lossy... but the whole point of psychoacoustic coding is that we lose information that the user can't hear.
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#6 Post by monele » Wed Apr 18, 2007 9:44 am

Copyright is not about the format. MP3, OGG, MID, WAV, whatever... any music can be in any of these formats. Going from MP3 to OGG doesn't make it free. Sooo... using Midi is cool, as long as it's not a copyrighted tune :). There *are* places giving out free-to-use midis... but I don't know them. Try a search on the forums, we had a topic on this ^^

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#7 Post by Raindropmemory » Wed Apr 18, 2007 10:00 am

Well, another question(well, I'm so stupid, sorry for make another stupid question) :D

What about classical music? from Mozart, Beethoven etc.?
Can I use them?

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#8 Post by DaFool » Wed Apr 18, 2007 10:22 am

Raindropmemory wrote: Well, what about MIDI? (MIDI is very crappy of course!), but some tune is not that bad and maybe I can convert it to Ogg. The Question is, did MIDI have a license? Can I use it freely without being pirate.
MIDI is NOT crappy! :wink: I compose entirely in midi. I don't see why most people who make electronic music insist that it sounds like electronic music. (reminds me about a discussion regarding why many Playstation games have a crappy soundtrack despite having 16 bit sound whereas some older games have more memorable tunes despite being 8 bit) If I had my way I'd try at least to make things sound like the Warsaw Philharmonic.

To convert midi, you can use Timidity to convert to wav.

You can use classical music provided it isn't one of those exclusive super performances by the Bigshot Symphony Orchestra with so and so conductor which they copyright the performance... else someone clarify this.

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#9 Post by PyTom » Wed Apr 18, 2007 10:32 am

That's a more complicated question. IIRC, there are two copyrights in music.

The first goes to the guy who wrote the song. For example, for Beethoven's Ninth symphony, this would go to Beethoven, and hence would have long expired.

Now, when the music is recorded, a second copyright is created, and owned by the people who recorded it. So just because Beethoven's Ninth is out of copyright, that doesn't mean that the Ren'Py Symphony Orchestra's recording of it is out of copyright. In general, you can't just rip a classical music and use it in your game.

You can go to:

http://www.mutopiaproject.org/

Which has freely license classical midis. Convert them to ogg, and you're good to go.
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#10 Post by c.s.marshall » Wed Apr 18, 2007 7:18 pm

Sorry, totally braindead ... cold & fever ... this will take ages to type ... sorry for typos ;-(

Re: mp3... general addition (might be nothing new, but ...):

What many people do not know is that the mp3-encoding itself (the *encoding* algorythm as well as the container format) are copyrighted. That means that even if you make your own music in your own studio with your own eqipment and pass the music on without having paid license fees to either the Fraunhofer institute or one of its licensed rights distributors, the music (or rather its 'form') is illegal.

It's hard to understand and hidden in legal mumbo-jumbo, but that is what it cooks down to. DECODING mp3 (for playing or for conversion) e.g. with WinAMP is a license-free procedure as the *decoding* algorythm is not copyrighted. That is why many legal sites (like WinAMP, just to stick with the example) require that you purchase a full version that allows encoding as they have to pay license fees.

The whole mp3-discussion also had a few people freak at this years CeBit computer fair - German police (helping French authorities) searched specific booths and confiscated hardware that allowed mp3 encoding (players, etc). The crackdown was initiated by a company that legally represents the Fraunhofer rights in France; their informants had correctly identified many companies that simply used a hardcoded version of LAME to enable mp3 conversion ... without paying a license fee to the Fraunhofer institute.

So if you can, stick with OGG...

Side note: Many people also still have their CDs unencoded (as WAV) on their drives because they think they 'lose' something when compressed - those peeps should try FLAC ... a non-lossy multiplatform solution.

Hope that all makes sense - I'm off to bed again.
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#11 Post by Kakurady » Fri Apr 20, 2007 8:48 am

But Windows Media Player doesn't play FLAC and Winamp didn't either.

(Kinda makes you wonder why they don't use WMA loseless either.)

-------------
So it is legal to use music synthesized from a public domain MID, right?
What if the sounds used by the synthesizer as the basis of synthesis, or the synthesizing algorithms, are copyrighted? Is it still legal to use the resulting audio?
-------------
PyTom wrote:Sure, it's lossy... but the whole point of psychoacoustic coding is that we lose information that the user can't hear.
Transcoding from one format to another is "even lossier".
(Though the idea of cutting down the bitrate really didn't came to me.)
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#12 Post by DaFool » Fri Apr 20, 2007 9:38 am

Kakurady wrote: -------------
So it is legal to use music synthesized from a public domain MID, right?
What if the sounds used by the synthesizer as the basis of synthesis, or the synthesizing algorithms, are copyrighted? Is it still legal to use the resulting audio?
-------------
If the soundfont you used is freeware, I see no problem. But it's always a good idea to credit the original source of music.

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#13 Post by Raindropmemory » Wed May 02, 2007 11:49 am

Oh! I'm come back again with hesitation to use music. I plan to use Claude Debussy's Music in MIDI format (and, of course, convert to OGG). I think it's more legal way to do than that mp3 things.

Can I do that?
(Well, being so stupid, I usually ask "nooby" question, sorry for that :wink: )

(Anyway, I don't care so much about using Midi in my game!! I just want to make game for pleasure, not money.) :wink:

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#14 Post by DaFool » Wed May 02, 2007 12:46 pm

Yeah, I think you're safe.

When the midi gets converted to wav, it will depend on your soundcard and whatever soundfonts you use, so that will make the final output almost totally original. People will recognize that it's classical music, but won't identify whose rendition it is. So it's safe.

About whether finally perfectly legal...no comment. Depends on the license of the midi file.

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#15 Post by absinthe » Wed May 02, 2007 1:38 pm

Raindropmemory wrote:Can I do that?
(Well, being so stupid, I usually ask "nooby" question, sorry for that :wink: )

(Anyway, I don't care so much about using Midi in my game!! I just want to make game for pleasure, not money.) :wink:
Hey, nobody starts out knowing this stuff. How will you find out if you don't ask? :)

Unfortunately, whether or not the end product is intended to make money or not doesn't make a difference for copyright purposes (except Fair Use, but there are other restrictions on that).

Here's how I had it explained to me. (This is under US law, and probably really overly simplified so I could understand it.)

Say you take work A, and use it for some purpose.

If the copyright holder of work A doesn't catch you or doesn't care or has licensed the work for the use you've put it to, you're okay (not necessarily legal, but okay). If they do catch you and care, they can sue you.

Once you're in court, you can attempt to prove that you used Work A legitimately (ie, under Fair Use), but you still have to go through all the cost and trouble of going to court. And if you lose, you might have to pay their costs, too.

Now, the copyright holder might not sue you -- they might just send you a letter telling you to stop using work A.

What I do to cover my rear as much as possible is go through Creative Commons or one of the international equivalents. Every time I download a song, I save a copy of its license (or a url to where the license is located) with that song. Then when I'm putting together the text credits and the in game credits, it's pretty easy to look up the permissions.

And don't forget, it's usually possible to email the author and ask for permission if you aren't sure about using the work. If you know they'll say no, well... that's a pretty good indicator of whether or not you should use it. :)

You might want to check out Wikipedia for some copyleft classical works (I see some Debussy on there).

On the right hand side, under 'comments', you'll find the licensing information (you may have to do some googling, though -- 'cc-by-sa', for example, is Creative Commons By-Share-Alike).
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