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How to Get Thai Music as MP3s within Thailand?


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Hello, soon on my Thai vacation I would like to buy a lot of music 🎸🎵 by Thai artists. What I finally need are MP3 music files locally stored in my personal laptop, hopefully with 196+ kBit. The laptop will be with me in Thailand (incl. ext. hard disk, Cloud storage and ext. DVD player).

I was last in Thailand late 2015 (when "Labanoon" and "Sai Vassi Baw Tim Kann" were smash hits; YouTube at your own risk, toramaan maak-maak). I bought lots of "pleng Thai" (Thai music). Of my preferred recording artists, I'd like to get the albums from 2016 till today. I'm interested in general Thai artists like Carabao, Thongchai, Tai Orathai and many others, but also some morlam singers in Isaan-Lao language like Jintara or Siriporn. I can write them all into a list (in Roman script).

  • Very best solution: Download and save legal MP3 in high quality straight onto my laptop hard-disk (not streaming)
  • Second best solution: Buy safe MP3 CDs
  • Third best solution: buy original Audio-CDs from online stores in Thailand (I'd convert them into MP3s in Thailand, then give away the discs)
  • Not desired: buy original Audio-CDs in brick+mortar stores (see below)
  • Only emergency: download torrents (don't know the offerings, quality, availability)
  • NOT wanted: Spotify etc., Youtube audio downloads

Buying original CDs in store or online:

I already bought many original CDs in Thai stores. There are severe disadvantages:

In some place I was systematically lied at, when the CD covers contained Thai script only. I do speak a bit of Thai ("ao CD pleng Thai khrap!"), but can't read. Anyway the shop won't store all I need.

And you still have to manually convert the original Audio CDs into MP3, which is a drag and requires an external DVD drive.

  • So best solution: Buy legal MP3s by download to my laptop hard disk (not streaming).
  • Second best solution: Buy CDs online, preferrably full of MP3s, not Audio-CD-format.

Practicalities:

Is there a website that would deliver Thai music files or Thai audio CDs to me in the west? I can't read Thai though. I will have an international visa card and a Thai SIM card, but not a Thai-specific visa card.

I will be in Thailand soon for several weeks on end and will spend 5-7 consecutive days in various locations, including far from the tourist track where Thais are very supportive (and happy about interest in their culture and might help with ordering). I know the postal addresses of my pre-booked places, but still haven't made a personal connection.

So, how to best get Thai music MP3s for my hard-disk? Thanks 🎸🎵!

Edited by Henrik2000
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I have used this company in the past ethaicd.com

Looks like they have MP3's, too. I just searched for MP3 and this popped up (link).

Edited by bgtp
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While you exclude streaming options, my go to for Thai or current Korean music, which I found, was also well liked by TG, was Joox. The VIP subscription offers offline listening. To access from overseas you need to use a VPN. But in Thailand there are no issues.

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Thanks bgtp and goodie2shoes!

About ethaicd: When i search say "Carabao", they list hundreds of albums. Clicking on one of them, it is often out of stock. But in the initial search results, CDs out of stock are not marked and appear as available. And too bad you can't list them by release date.

When I open ethai.cd now from the west, each CD costs 10 or 14 USD including "free shipping". That one in my browser costs 10.50 USD incl. That's very unfortunate if you want to buy a lot, not just one. In my memory, in Thai shops original Thai audio CDs cost 180 or 220 THB (example). Interestingly, they even seem to send out USB drives (sticks?) filled with MP3. At least this MP3 collection is noted with 320 kbps bit rate, which would be good if used properly.

I can only hope that the prices are much lower when I open it from Thailand later.

(Many of) their MP3 CDs seem to be those seemingly random collections you also get on the fishmarket or in MBK für 150 THB with songs from many different years, so there might be a big overlap with titles I already own (i bought a lot before 2016). It still might be worthwhile and I do have a lil software to find audio duplicates.

Joox I might try once in Thailand (have no VPN now). I can try to find out if the "VIP" subscription with offline listening brings real MP3s to my hard-disk, maybe like podcasts.

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Do CD stores still exist in Thailand?  There certainly aren’t any in Pattaya. 

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Find the youtube video or song you want and use free youtube to MP3 converter found by googling,  then save it to your laptop

May your heart always be joyful. May your song always be sung....and may you stay - Forever Young

I'll let you be in my dreams if I can be in yours Bobby Dylan

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