iTunes is rubbish

Friday 13th May, 2005
Well, somebody's got to say it...and it's me.

It comes as no surprise to me whatsoever that Apple is behind the product that is iTunes. Wonderfully user friendly and easy to use on the outside but uselessly non-technical on the inside.

Last night I decided to convert my iTunes library of songs I'd ripped from CDs from the proprietary AAC format to MP3 format. Initially I had 20-30 MP3 tracks on my PC. Then I installed iTunes which imported them and after which I ripped much of my CD collection, over 1000 tracks. The original MP3s remained in MP3 format, but all the new stuff was AAC.

So, I copied my entire library into a new playlist, removed a few things that I didn't want to convert and then did a select all. I then told it to convert all selected tracks to MP3 and off it went, so far so good.

Halfway through the conversion process it stopped, apparently one of the "protected" AAC files (purchased on iTunes online store) couldn't be converted. Hmmm...ok, but it's left me in a useless position. For all the tracks that had converted, I now have 2 files; a .m4a file (AAC format) and a .mp3 file. The tracks weren't converted at all, but a copy created in the new format in the source folder. So I now have duplicates scattered all over my music folders. Thanks Apple!

If I now re-start the conversion process, would you believe, it starts from the beginning and creates ANOTHER mp3 file; so I end up with 1 m4a file and 2 mp3 files for the tracks already converted.

Some of the original MP3s have never been converted to AAC format when iTunes imported them, so I can't just delete all the MP3's and start again as I will lose some of my music.

My final thought was to use the conversion playlist in some way. It contains more or less all my music, without duplicates, in a single list. If I just put this onto my iPod, clear the entire library and then restore back...problem solved. It was then I hit the most pathetic problem.

My playlist has 3.76MB of music in it. I have a 4GB iPod mini. So why???
Image:iTunes is rubbish

Like I's rubbish. I do have stronger words available.

  1. 1) Ben Poole Said: (13/05/2005 21:48:37 GMT) Gravatar Image
    iTunes is rubbish

    Go into your Library, and add a column for "Kind". This will allow you to sort all your tracks depending on what format they are, i.e. MP3 or AAC / AAC protected. You can then remove what you want easily, without having to root through directories etc. (especially if you use the "Show Duplicate Songs" option.

    iTunes won't convert a protected AAC file to an MP3 for obvious reasons. But there are a few ways round his. My preferred option is JHymn, which is excellent.

  2. 2) Richard Echeandia Said: (15/05/2005 19:02:53 GMT) Gravatar Image
    iTunes is rubbish

    I totally understand your pain. Only a Mac user could find that horrible, horrible product in the least bit usable.

    I've been able to chuck the whole "iTunes" bit out the window since I found out about iPod plugin for WinAmp. WinAmp gives me WAAAYYYY more formats for my music and now it can push music to the iPod as well. Check out { Link } and you might be able to say "So Long iTunes".

  3. 3) Wild Bill Said: (15/05/2005 20:42:00 GMT) Gravatar Image
    iTunes is rubbish

    Ahh. iTunes might be blinded by simplicity, but it is a good package. Compare and contrast with the Siths' Media player. God.

    jHymn is kewl. As Vowe says, "remove needless protection as quickly as possible"

    Chill. If something as innocuous as iTunes is winding you up - now is not a good time to check out the LongWait beta.. :-)

    ----* Bill

  4. 4) G Said: (16/05/2005 18:16:11 GMT) Gravatar Image
    iTunes is rubbish

    Stop dicking about about, come and see my Sonos gear and get your credit card out :-)

    It just works !


  5. 5) trondk Said: (24/05/2005 13:46:57 GMT) Gravatar Image
    iTunes is rubbish

    You might want to try JHymn

    { Link }

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