iTunes.. Beyond the Basics

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Steve CDN

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Well I've pretty well figured out iTunes for managing my new iPod and have to admit I've grown to like it. 

There are two questions I have to which I cannot find the answer.  ???

1)  What is the significance of checked tracks, the checkmarks in the left column, as well as the checkmarks in "Track Info"

2)  How are "Compilations" managed differently from other groups of tracks?  For example I have a compilation comprised of ten CD's which i have identified as a "Compilation".  I have turned "On" Compilations on my iPod's menu, but cannot understand what this gives me.

Thanks for any info  :)
 

rhmahoney

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Checkmarks: marked tracks will be played and will transfer to iPod. Unchecking a track blocks this.

Compilations: I'm a bit vague on this. It is part of the filing system. Regular albums are filed inside artist folder. Compilation is treated as just another artist who has a lot of albums inside. I think it is to cut down on the number of total folders inside the iTunes library.
 

Steve CDN

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Thanks Russ, so I presume checkmarks on the Info Edit (when you right click on a track) are the fields that will be edited.  A checkmark is automatically added to a field which is modified.

I'll experiment more with the Compilations because it might be useful for a few...compilations I have.  My intuition feels that an compilation can be configured independently from the global settings, but I haven't figured it out yet.

I've discovered that genre's can be identified with multiple descriptive keywords that can be useful in programming smart playlists to focus into very specific groups.

Any tips from your experience in programming smart playlists?
 

rhmahoney

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<<so I presume checkmarks on the Info Edit (when you right click on a track) are the fields that will be edited.  A checkmark is automatically added to a field which is modified.>>

In my first reply I was referring to the checkmarks in the left column. I failed to notice the second part of your question. I think I see a checkmark appear next to any field where you modify the data. Why this occurs I do not know.

As to compilations, I have essentially banned them as they make "various artists" the default. I Have classic music composer in the artist field instead.

My latest modifications of my library has been in utilizing the grouping field to lay down codes to augment smart playlist formation. I gave up waiting for Apple to explain how they use that field to group together the 4 movements of a symphony, so I did a kludge by makeing each symphony its own album. Now I can shuffle by album in a certain playlist and hear entire compositions instead of random movements. I selected AJ for this set of 10,200 tracks. K is celtic which is found in several genres including classical, folk, world, and new age. B=bassoon. C=cassette tape origin. G=gregorian chant. H=extra special. p=peru-andean flute music. ?=metadate needs repair. I have room for a lot more when I think of a use.
Do you have several mods that appear in most of your smart playlists? make a SPL of just those items. Then you can add that special SPL to any new SPL without having to enter each one individually.
 

Steve CDN

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Russ,

I have several SPL's  that are genre based, using exclusions and inclusions.  My genre field is comprised of multiple keywords so I can differentialte between vocals and instrumentals after selecting the true genre.  Another sub group is based on my ratings.     I am working on narrowing the focus based on other criteria which I will enter into "Comments".

Most of my iPod library tracks come from recorded streaming audio, plus CD ripping, so I have not had to buy downloaded files.

It came as a shocking surprise when I learned downloaded files for an iPod must be bought from iTunes as downloaded files from other providers such as Walmart etc are not supported by iPod. Similarly iTunes downloads play only on iPod, thereby shutting out non iPod players.

There is a lawsuit against Apple for monopolizing downloads {groan}  Lawsuit Info Here
 

rhmahoney

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Steve:<<<I have several SPL's  that are genre based, using exclusions and inclusions.  My genre field is comprised of multiple keywords so I can differentialte between vocals and instrumentals after selecting the true genre. >>>

I have left the genre as a single word. I now use groupings to denote the subgenres in the form of one letter codes. So V could indicate a vocal track with singers and i for instrumentals.

For example, my celtic music is distributed among celtic, classic,baroque, new age, folk, and world genres!

<<<It came as a shocking surprise when I learned downloaded files for an iPod must be bought from iTunes as downloaded files from other providers such as Walmart etc are not supported by iPod. Similarly iTunes downloads play only on iPod, thereby shutting out non iPod players.>>>

Not quite correct. I have many free podcasts from itunes store that are not DRMed and several albums of MP3 files that are from sites offering free samples (Philadelphia Orchestra) and the Beethoven 9 symphonies from the BBC.

You can only play purchased DRMed stuff on the appropriate brand of music player:

In addition to saying "Similarly iTunes downloads play only on iPod, thereby shutting out non iPod players". You should add: the reverse statement about plays for sure DRM not playing on ipod.

ipod=itunes...but does play in both OSX & windows
Zune=M$...will not play in OSX
plays for sure=creative, sandisk etc...will not play in OSX
Sony PS3=plays only their games
M$ Xbox=plays only their games
Wii=plays only their games


<<<There is a lawsuit against Apple for monopolizing downloads {groan} >>>

Amazing the depths lawyers will sink to! The few examples of proprietary lock in listed above barely scratches the surface. The itunes-ipod system is still far from being a monopoly and is the most open of the lot as it accepts both mac and Windows.
 
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