To compare the peak value data from your own CDs with those contained in the PDF files, you need a Windows PC and a free software package called Exact Audio Copy. It can be downloaded from http://www.exactaudiocopy.de/en/index.php/resources/download/. There isn’t space to describe its features here but it’s an excellent CD ripper which can rip from damaged CDs amongst other things.
To examine the peak values for a particular CD, insert into your CD drive. After a few moments, a list of tracks on the CD should appear. Select all the tracks and then right-click and select ‘Test Selected Tracks’ from the menu that pops up.
The computer should start reading the CD. Don’t worry about hard disk space – in this mode, it doesn’t rip the tracks, it just inspects them. Once it’s finished, you should hear a bell and will be greeted with a number of options. You should select ‘Save Log’ to save the results of the analysis to your hard drive as a text file.
Then open your preferred editor (Notepad, Wordpad, Word, whatever) and look at the results, which should be broken down track by track. Each track contains a peak percentage figure – you should note down all the values and compare it against the database here.
My CD doesn’t match any of the values on your site. What does it mean?
It means that your CD has a mastering that has yet to be documented on this site and that you send in the details of the CD and the percentage values from EAC to firstname.lastname@example.org