mooo said:i tunes is great, i use it for mp3 purchasing. it comes in protected thing so only itunes can play it. but you can also burn the songs with itunes and then rip to mp3 or ogg later on.
So, do you mean you can buy the mp3, burn it to disc directly (no conversion to CD audio/Wav) and simply copy it off the disc without having to decode/encode again? That sounds too easy, but if that's the way it is, then I'll have to check it out.
However, if you have to decode the mp3 from itunes to CD format, and then rip it back off and re-encode it, you are losing too much. Once the original MP3 is encoded, the missing data is gone. Period. Converting it back to CD (WAV) format won't bring the missing pieces back. Then ripping the CD audio and re-encoding just increases distortion. So, even if you started out with a 320 quality MP3, by the time you're done buring, ripping, and encoding again, you'll have the equivalent quality of a 128 MP3 (more or less) even though it may still technically be 320.
Bah, all this is making my head hurt. I guess I'll just browse those discount CD stores and/or garage sales once in a while and hope I get lucky and find a CD I want. Then I'll just rip/encode it myself and be done with it.
From what I'm hearing, the bottom line is that there is no online store that sells hi-Q MP3's (320) with no limit or restriction on use. Going through loops to re-encode/decode, etc is too much bother for the result. Oh well. Thanks everyone for their input; I'll still go out and check out some of your suggestions. Maybe I can find a way to work around the negative aspects without breaking any copyright laws. Being a law-abiding citizen is such a pain in the neck!