7 Websites To Search For The Perfect Album Cover Art

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AlbumCover   7 Websites To Search For The Perfect Album Cover Art Tapes have given way to CDs and now CDs have given way (some if not all) to MP3 files. Then there are a huge lot of MP3 songs we download from the web or rip from music CDs. The first rule of organization says that we should neatly put them in the right folders and then tag them. There are tools for the job and some good ones at that.

Going back to the job of making our music collection look neat, we come to the “˜face’ of our songs and music albums ““ the album cover or specifically, album cover art.

Just like film posters, album covers deck up a song or the album it belongs to. Album cover art also fancies up the visual interface of our digital music players. For instance, cycling through the album art in your iPod. So just compare the two windows ““ one with album covers and one with just data tags. Get the picture (pun intended)?

Tools such as MP3Tag (recommended as one of the better ones in the free download category) ping online databases like Amazon, Discogs, or freedb to gather all the metadata for a music file. That includes the album cover art. But what if you get a blank for a particular album or the one you get is not the choicest? You have to go and get the right cover art for yourself.

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So, enter the album cover art engines.

AllCDCovers

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If you put in a search for album art cover or CD cover, it’s very likely you will get this website in the search results. AllCDCovers seems to be the first stop for all album art. The website is about covers but it also has a lot of other activities to offer. It is community driven and offers contests for uploaders. Uploaders who submit high quality album art covers stand to win quite a number of cool prizes.

A 3 step wizard searches out covers for you in music, movies and games. One timesaver for the downloader is that the covers are also rated by quality. The download page also gives out artist and album info. You can choose to download any part of the cover (front, back or CD).

AllCDCovers now also provides a browser toolbar, though that might be a bit of overkill for album art covers.

Albumart

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If the earlier web service was busy, this seems almost bare bones. Put in your search query and select between CD and DVD. Albumart throws up its results sourced from Amazon. There is no download button and a click on the thumbnail takes you to the Amazon page. The interface with Amazon is unfortunately not perfect because I threw up zero results while with Amazon, I got it all.

Albumart Exchange

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Has a motley and quirky selection of artwork. But a visit to this site tells you that the guy behind it is passionate about his creation. The author of course doesn’t have the copyright but he has improved upon the original artworks. There are more than 70,000 images with an average resolution of 600×600. Visit this site just to see the beauty in the variety of album art covers.

Album Cover Art

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Album Cover Art is another cover art site with an uncomplicated look. You get a lineup of the most popular and new releases on the homepage. If the album cover you are searching for isn’t there, browse for it in the Genres or query it in the search box. You get the album art and also information about the tracks in the album is listed along with the Amazon link.

SlothRadio

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SlothRadio is basically an online rock radio station with a cover finder. SlothRadio gives you covers for not only CD and DVDs but also games and books. The landing page is just a search box where you put in your query like the name of the artist or the album. You can also use the Advanced Search Option if you want a cover of a specific size or want to sort it in a specific order. The collection is quite extensive and is again sourced from Amazon.

Sleevage

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Sleevage is a bit off the beaten track but it does define the word “˜art’ in album art. It features an assorted bunch of artwork and not all the stuff is for the regular bands. The search engine is slick and gives you six ways to search for your album art. This site is an eyeful just for the quality of the featured album art.

Seek a Cover

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Check out covers for music albums and movies using the search box. You can also go through the archive by alphabet. The covers are all high quality and in the mid-resolution range.

Usually the search for album covers begins and ends with a Google Image Search or we leave it to the tagging feature in our mp3 software. If you are picky and finicky about your album art covers, then these websites give you seven more options. Searching for the right cover art can be a painstaking chore especially if it’s a manual job. But if you love your music collection, then these resources should definitely make it a more pleasurable search.

What about your album art? Have you paid attention to it lately? Let us know your favored method of collecting and organizing your mp3 collection (with the covers in place).

Image Credit : Leo Reynolds

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24 Comments - Write a Comment

Reply

Nickamc

I usually just use Google Images whenever mp3tag fails to recognize an album… much wider coverage than any of the mentioned websites and a variety of sizes and alternate images.

Chronic Alibi

I agree. Those websites are probably already indexed by google anyway.

AlbumArtExchange.com

Searching for images on Google will not show you the images from the bigger sites like AlbumArtExchange.com or AllCDCovers.com. The entire point of these sites is to provide images which are of superior quality than those found in Amazon or Google search results.

Reply

AndyK

Saikat,

I think you’ve not mentioned one of the most amazing sites out there for album artwork. It’ll be great if you can mention this as a post script.

http://www.5byfive.net

Simplicity is the key to finding artwork, and this site has never failed me. All you need to do is type and the album cover is ready :)

Saikat

Hi AndyK,

Thanks for the mention…It’s really slick. Wonder why it didn’t turn up in my research :)

I will suggest it for our Cool Websites series. Thanks again.

AndyK

Yes, It’s one of the most unheralded websites out there. But easily better than all the other ad-cluttered websites out there.

Jinkers

It is unheralded for good reason: It’s not that great!
Slick but with teeny images of poor quality. It’s not add cluttered YET, obviously they’re trying though and intend to plaster adverts right across the face of the image. The searches I tried turned up images that were quite mediocre.

The site says that it gets the images from Google Images so, why is this interface necessary at all when you can just go to Google and pick the best one yourself? It’s slick but a waste of time.

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deadman36g

Albumart Exchange is my personal fav

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Nick Daws

Great list of resources, and good to see prog rock classic ‘In the Court of the Crimson King’ in the first photo!

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Paul Davies

I know that this isnt technically a ‘website’ but it does search all of the sites mentioned here. I think its great piece of software. Been using it for ages with no problems whatsoever.

http://sourceforge.net/projects/album-art/

Saikat

Thanks for that, Paul.

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Jorge

http://www.rateyourmusic.com it’s a must for this task

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كوت الكويت

I agree. Those websites are probably already indexed by google anyway

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Rob

http://www.discogs.org is another site that has (usually) decent scants of cover art

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AlbumArtExchange.com

AlbumArtExchange also has an image quality rating system. In fact, it was the first to offer such a feature. Whether using AAE or ACDC, image quality should be judged by YOU and not an arbitrary rating that most users don’t bother to vote with.

While I can see how you could look at it as “motley and quirky”, we prefer to think of it as thorough and eclectic.:-) AAE’s goal is to provide the best images are available out there and of a huge variety of albums.

As far as online image searches via Google images and the like, I want to say that these larger sites are NOT indexed in a way that you can find those images in the search results; you have to go to the site.

Saikat

Thanks for the info, guys.

Reply

Alessandro Benedetti

Try http://www.freecoversworld.com! It’s a new site with over 100,000 CD and DVD covers. You can simply search for a cover by its name or select a category. I recently added movie informations for DVD covers and album information for CD covers.

Jinkers

Re: Freecoversworld: To review honestly and IMO , Looks like the quality is pretty mediocre and you almost have as much advertising as AllCDCovers.com. I prefer the gallery type interface.

Alessandro Benedetti

Well, I don’t think is mediocre ;-) All the images are at least (about) 1000×1000 pixel, that I think is enough for print purpose. This week I’ll upload about 28000 new audio and movie cover with very high quality (over 3000×3000 pixel).

Unfortunatelly the site is really new so nobody helped me uploading new high quality covers for now, I hope to find volunteers in the next months.

And about advertising … yes probably there’s a lor of advertising, but web space really cost :-(
I’m talking about over 40GB of images.

Jinkers

We’re starting to stray off-topic here but 1.) most of the Audio covers I looked at there were 500×500 and not in the right color space. Just becaus an image is large like 1000x doesn’t mean that that it is of high quality 2.) based upon the count, I assume that these are from other sites and not their own scans. Stealing is never cool. 3.)I am quite familiar with hosting costs and if your’re shopping around properly, you should be paying mostly for bandwidth used, not storage. IMHO, this site has come along and is trying to make money. 4.) And finally, WHY? All of the sites listed above already do what you are doing and have been doing it well for years. No offense but this site offers nothing new, just artwork taked from the other sites with along new advertising! It looks like their just trying to hop on the wagon and make a couple of bucks and offer nothing new as far as interface ofr content. No thanks.

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Jinkers

P.S. There is no legal reason to need to print a cover, BTW…

Alessandro Benedetti

As you said we are off-topic but I think I have to reply to your senteces.

1) You’re right, some audio covers are at lower quality (I’ve searched for dvd cover when I replied to you). I know that pixels aren’t the only quality factor but I think that there is only one site that is working only in high quality (Albumart Exchange).
2) Covers are from other sites and from my own collection. I’m trying to make a site with the largest covers collection and I want to develop an API to leave the possibility to software developer to integrate covers in their software (like mp3tag). If you want quality use Albumart Exchange.
3) Yes, I want to give a free service and, if I can, I want to make money, don’t you use Google that have the same phylosopy?
4) Why? As wrote before: “I’m trying to make a site with the largest covers collection” and I’ve a lot of work to do, I’ve never said that I have the best covers collection. Probably you have asked the same when Google started spidering? There was Altavista too…

If you want we can continue our discussion using email (info [at] freecoversworld.com), I think that makeusof readers donesn’t care about our words ;-)

BilboBaggins

In this case, providing a FREE service has nothing to do with Hosting costs. You cannot charge money to access images that you do not hold the copyright to. The studios will sue you and shut you down before you can blink. You should be able to host that site for about $8 (or less) USD a month.

No offense but Jinkers is right – taking images from other sites and making a buck off of it is wrong. Doing so just to make money is even worse! In my opinion, it’s petty obvious by all of the advertising and images from other sites what this site is all about. This site Freecoversworld is an “also ran” and not worth the review. The author was correct to exclude it. Not trying to be mean, it’s just the truth.

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Jinkers

Of course quality is an issue! Otherwise people would just use Amazon & Google for the images. When combined, THEY have the largest covers collection. I think that perhaps you have not done the research before opening the site.

So, you do not think that there is anything wrong with taking images from other sites to add to YOUR collection and make money off of advertisers with THEIR hard work?! Seriously?

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