Keeping track of physical media

A few decades ago during my coding days, I wrote a Visual Basic application to keep track of my growing CD collection.
It worked so that the PC would read a CD from its drive and pull the info from a public online database (FreeDB Site) then save that info to a local MS access database.
It would allow me to run queries, generate reports by artist, genre, etc.
That application is now obsolete for many reasons (it requires 16-bit Windows libraries, the FreeDB is not available anymore, I do not have VB6 to compile anymore, etc).

I use Roon to manage my digital files, I really just need a new tool to keep track of my CD/SACD media inventory.
Ideally, I would like to find a tool that requires little of no manual input. It would have to read the CD from a drive, or better yet scan the CD barcode with a mobile app to find the data online.

So that was a long introduction just to ask: what is your software of choice to keep track of your CD inventory?

If you have MS Office 365, check Asset Tracking template in Access and see if it serves the purpose. If you have a sizable CD/SACD collection you may want to add something like this:
How to Read Barcode Data Into MS Access Databases | Techwalla

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Human Brain, Version 1.72.


I’ve used Music Collector for 10+ years…

It has the bar code scanning, CD reading, etc., that you’re looking for. Version I have is from several years ago when they offered lifetime standalone software/licenses before they moved to a subscription business model.

Major reason I use it is b/c I ditched the CD cases for my collection several decades ago (“decade”, wow, that hurt to type!). I store using Case Logic sleeves for my ~2000 CD, SACD, DVD collection and it fits in a relatively small space.

Only manual steps I perform are separating the respective media by format (CD, SACD, DVD) and ensuring index # is correct b/c I use a numbering convention: 1-1XXX= CD’s, 7000-7XXX=SACD, etc. Big advantage is not having to alphabetize the media. I can easily search/sort for what I’m looking for, find the index # and then locate the sequential sleeve number. For the most part, the data it retrieves from the internet is accurate but, occasionally, I have to correct text or find a cover image. Depends on how anal I want to be.

Snapshot of my inventory:


Will add…also a Roon user and you probably know but for those that don’t…it’s possible to export your inventory to Excel.

Go to album view and press ctrl-A to select all. Click on the 3 dots that appear at the top, select export.

It’ll give you 3 export options.


I tried that one but I am at version 1.54 and quickly running out of memory after a few dozen CDs :sob:

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This is really cool

It’s been great but, tbh, other than the initial input and assigning index #, I’d be fine w/Roon and the export capability.

If I didn’t have Music Collector, I’d rethink the indexing and just modify the FLAC metadata to store an index # for use within Roon. I rarely need the physical media and the only time I need a copy of my inventory is when I’m on the prowl (out-and-about scouring second-hand stores) and can’t remember what I have.


Thank you @jaycee for the detailed info. This software seems to tick most boxes. The one thing that gives me some pause is the fact that it is subscription based.


@2muchgear I also use CLZ for iPhone and iPad. I don’t have the desktop version. I can scan the barcode on most CDs and it works 98% of the time. For the remaining 2% I enter them manually— and these are mostly independent releases. Overall, it does what I need it to do. Near the end of the year they usually offer a discount on multi-year renewals and I take them up on that.

I work on the side in a record shop so I see a lot of physical media come and go, so it has gotten harder over the years to know what I have versus what I’ve seen. My memory is good, but I found myself buying a couple of things twice hahahaha. I also use CLZ to flag a disc that I’d like to revisit for my occasional radio show.

Honestly, CLZ does way more than I need. Like most software does. For what I need and use it for, it’s a winner.


Yes, there is a subscription, but that is so you can receive software updates. If you let your subscription lapse, you can still use the Music Collector software (if you are storing the database files locally, rather than on their Cloud server). I have been using it so long that I got grandfathered in on a lifetime subscription for the phone app. Once in a while I will by a subscription for 3 months (when it is offered at a discount) for the PC software so that I can get up to date on the latest version and features. They are always working on improvements and new features. I store the database on my laptop and then synchronize with the phone app so that I have a list of my CDs on my phone for when I go shopping so I can check to see what I already have.

I also use their Movie Collector software and phone app.

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Good points that I forgot. Like you, I was grandfathered years ago. I’m on their mailing list and, as you state, they offer some sort of reduced rate or specials quite often. I also agree there’s way more to the software than I need but will continue using it as long as it exists and I have the ability to.

I don’t use the phone app however, monthly, it asks me to sync recent inventory additions w/my on-line account. Using a link I’m able to view my collection via the web browser on my phone.

@2muchgear, bstanwick makes good points and, IMO, the program is worth considering.

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I downloaded the Music Collector trial to check it out. Thank you all for your recommendations.


I decided to use Discogs for all physical media (and Roon for downloads). I discovered a pretty good iOS app, Vinyl Vault, that can scan barcodes and enter into your Discogs database.

The thing I like about Discogs is that it makes it really easy to keep your wantlist and move any to your collection when you buy it. Excel spreadsheets etc just require too much manual intervention and inevitably get out of whack. At least that’s been my experience.


Another discogs user here. Yeah, plenty of other apps/services out there (and lots of ways to McGyver something with an Excel spreadsheet or Access database), but the integration of my personal db + a nearly unlimited community of sellers is awesome.

I still keep track of every purchase with excel, for equipments, CDs, LPs, so I have an idea about how much have spent (and sometimes make me feel a little bit guilty); Recently devoted decent amount of time and archived every CDs and LPs on discogs. The rewarding feeling of discogs archiving is that it shows how much these CDs and LPs may worth if put on sell (offset the guilty feeling a little bit:-)

Following your advise I’m testing the Music Connect App (OS and iOS).

Quite interesting.

Because of my organization of records, sorted by decades (60s, 70s, etc) and then by author (AC/DC, Blondie, etc) I have an issue with this app and in general.

The app is able to import from a “Core”, a web based database, the year of “Release” but not the year of “Original Release”.

I contacted them and unfortunately they do not have this information to create automatisms.

Where do you get on the web a speed search engine able to provide this information? I can use Wikipedia but it would be useful a specific database online able to give me from the Album Title the year of the first original issue of an Album.


It seems great! Thank you. It provides the information I needed.

At the moment I still haven’t found an app or software able to provide an easy way to:

  • take a picture of an album I bought (barcode is not always present and catalogue number is difficult to read)
  • automatically add it to a database, including some basic infos like format artist title cover AND the original release date (my main need)
  • manually add/select some tags and a personal shelf location (following my preferences)

I know a lot of apps that do the same job with bottles of wine or other products, why not with records and CDs?

So I keep the Music Connect and will manually add each time the original release date searching through All Music, sigh!