I bought a new mainboard the day after melting my AZ11. I bought a MSI K7T Turbo 2 for $80 at CompuCare. It was the cheapest one I could find that supported all the stuff I have. I could've saved $10-20 by ordering online but I would've been without my 'puter for days *gasp*. Anyway, I hooked everything up and powered it on. The diagnostic lights indicated a processor failure. So the new Athlon is cooked. Great. So I'm back to the trusty Duron. I'm going to see if I can return the Athlon for exchange by claiming that it is defective. If they don't honor the exchange, I'm just going to have to lay down another $50 for a new processor.
I also rearranged the DIMMs in the K62 box and got that working.
On the bright side, the new music gear I ordered should be here on Thursday. I ordered a mixer, microphone, kick pedal, and music stand. I wanted to get a synth too but I decided to wait until I can afford a really nice Korg or something. The Yamaha I was considering buying has decent enough sounds but the key action is atrocious, or so I've heard. Since a secondary function of the synth is for my kids to learn how to play piano, I want to make sure I have a quality instrument.
I played with my encoders some more today. I can't believe how much better Ogg Vorbis is than mp3. First I encoded a few sample songs in varying qualities with ogg. I was amazed that I couldn't tell the difference between the raw wav and the lowest quality ogg. To get the same filesize with mp3 I had to encode at 64Kbps 22Khz. The mp3 had some serious artifacts in the upper frequencies. I am still somewhat surprised that I can't tell the difference between the ogg and the wav despite a reduction in filesize by 23x!!
I decided to encode my collection with ogg set at quality 4 (just in case my hearing improves :)