iTunes 8

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iTunes 8

Postposted on Tue Sep 09, 2008 7:44 pm

Hey guys,


Loading up iTunes 8 and started up Genius for the first time. Some thoughts:

- Wow, the Grid view looks like a fairly dramatic departure from the iTunes GUI canon. Not only that, but as I suspected it's actually *ahem* copies a similar view mode pioneered first in Windows Media Player. :oops:

- Huh. Genius bar takes kindof a while to start up since it has to "sniff" your library's meta data 'n such and then send that info to Apple. (I have a feeling Record labels are going to pay top-dollar for THAT info) FYI I have about 1800 songs, and it took 5 - 10 minutes.

- Alright, it's done. I want to see what new songs it suggests and I want to listen to them. WHAT?! I only get the friggin' 30 second preview from the iTunes store? What a piece of... letdown! Epic letdown!

- Oh... hm, when you push the Genius button and you're in List view with a Song selected (yes, only in that mode) you sometimes get a list 25 songs strong and generally the same "feel." Er, sortof. People with smaller libraries (I would consider mine smaller than most) will have a problem of a lack of options for Genius to choose from. People with obscure libraries ( like myself, in places) will also be flat-out told by Genius "I can't find a playlist appropriate for this song." So it's hit-and-miss.

In short? If you were a fan of Pandora or are a current user of Last.fm's "recommended" playlist... iTunes8 Genius won't substitute that. Last.fm and Pandora both let you listen to the song IN IT'S ENTIRETY, which is something apparently Apple still isn't willing to do. Yes, the suggestions are good and relevent, but listening to a super-protected measly 30-second clip just makes me angry, not happy. It certainly a poor way to make a sale.
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Wed Sep 10, 2008 5:43 am

Yeah, I'm marginally disappointed. It doesn't recognize any of my big band stuff. The big Genius bar is all I could find at first, which showed me the previews and I couldn't figure out how to have it dig through my own library, but then I found the little "atomic" button in the lower left that showed me stuff from my own library. The playlists it came up with are marginally similar, but with only 1800-ish songs, it's really stretching. I have a feeling that if my library was 2x or 3x that size, it'd do better.

Also, if you double-click an album, it shows you the songs in that album and you can select one to get a Genius playlist. It's still list view, but meh. I still prefer Coverflow.
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Wed Sep 10, 2008 1:14 pm

I have 8,945 songs. As of 3:15, Genius is about 3/4 of the way done gathering information on my library. It started at 2:30.

I'll post back again and let you know what I think when it finishes up; I know both of you said you it didn't really work well for your 1800 song libraries.
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Wed Sep 10, 2008 1:27 pm

I have about 8000 songs in my library and it has worked OK for me. It has made some choices that make me go WTF though. Genius is really more like smart shuffle than it is like pandora. Maybe with time it will get smarter at least apple says it will.

Song preview on iTunes always has been 30 seconds as far as I know so thats to be expected when you click on preview.
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Wed Sep 10, 2008 1:39 pm

mkay, it finished the last third in about seven minutes. That's about as even as my car's gas gauge, which is still above full 4 gallons into a tank.

Genius doesn't actually work for about a third of my songs (anything classical, such as Aaron Copland's Clarinet Concerto, Mozart's Coronation Mass, Holst's The Planets,; anything by a local group, such as Big in Iowa, or the Psychodots to name my favorites; or anything by a big group that isn't one of their greatest hit, such as Meat Loaf or Dion.) And of course, if it can't recommend a playlist based on a song, it can't include that song in playlists either, so I'm getting recommendations for 2/3s of my library from the 2/3s that Genius can play.

It seems like a cool toy in general, though, if you ignore all of that.

edit/ps/etc./whatever: Yeah, SSID, I see what you mean. The grid is dead-on Windows Media Player
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Wed Sep 10, 2008 1:50 pm

It depends on the classical album - if I have something in my library that's on the iTMS, it at least gives me Genius suggestions, if not something in my existing library. I have a Mozart CD of Eine Klein Nachtmusik + the 40th symphony in G minor (Köchel 550 - it's a bird! it's a plane! it's a Mozart!) that is also available on the iTMS and it at least gives me something else to buy (usually by other Classical-period composers, which is nice)
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Wed Sep 10, 2008 2:12 pm

I have 8,945 songs. As of 3:15, Genius is about 3/4 of the way done gathering information on my library. It started at 2:30.

I'll post back again and let you know what I think when it finishes up; I know both of you said you it didn't really work well for your 1800 song libraries


Yeah. Judging by your sig you've got a relatively modest system, and I'm guessing your iTunes is the Windows type, so it's probably slower on top of the fact that it has ~4 times as much work to do. I was on a white intel macbook in OS X 10.5 w/ (probably) a 5400RPM hdd and a 2.0Ghz C2D. IIRC, derFunk is on an intel Mac Mini.

and yeah, the Grid view is okay but... when you sort by artist it only shows you 1 album cover per artist even if you have multiple albums. Yes, you can see the other album art by rolling over with your mouse (ala iPhoto '08). WMP simply draws a "stack" of cd cases if there are multiple albums, which to me looks better AND is functional since at-a-glance I can see which artists have multiple albums and which don't.
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Wed Sep 10, 2008 4:04 pm

Yeah, Mac Mini Intel 1.83 w/2GB of memory and an upgraded 160GB 5400RPM drive. Took about 10 minutes, if even that long.

edit:

when you sort by artist it only shows you 1 album cover per artist even if you have multiple albums.

ORLY?
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Wed Sep 10, 2008 7:06 pm

derFunkenstein wrote:ORLY?


Yeah that's by album which is okay but a real space-waster for some. Could someone out there with WMP 10 or 11 post a pic of their grid view with the albums stacked on top of each other so someone knows what I'm talking about?
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Wed Sep 10, 2008 7:45 pm

ssidbroadcast wrote:Yeah that's by album which is okay but a real space-waster for some. Could someone out there with WMP 10 or 11 post a pic of their grid view with the albums stacked on top of each other so someone knows what I'm talking about?

WMP is an abomination, let's not talk about it
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Wed Sep 10, 2008 8:13 pm

leor wrote:
ssidbroadcast wrote:Yeah that's by album which is okay but a real space-waster for some. Could someone out there with WMP 10 or 11 post a pic of their grid view with the albums stacked on top of each other so someone knows what I'm talking about?

WMP is an abomination, let's not talk about it

Oh really? It's more functional that quite a few others.
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Wed Sep 10, 2008 8:13 pm

well he was talking about it in the context that iTunes did the same thing (or so that's how I read it). Now that we know that's not true (thankfully) let's move on. :D

I just need a larger library. there needs to be more good music.

And usacomp, it's not as useful as iTunes, don't even pretend otherwise. ;)
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Wed Sep 10, 2008 8:16 pm

derFunkenstein wrote:And usacomp, it's not as useful as iTunes, don't even pretend otherwise. ;)

I prefer a system that doesn't try to take over my files and change them and add random metadata and try to move them around. Hopefully they've improved that little 'feature' since the last time I tried it.
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Thu Sep 11, 2008 5:40 am

Well, iTunes doesn't do that; not sure what software you're talking about.

By default, iTunes for Windows DOES NOT:

1.) make a copy of a file to the iTunes Music folder
2.) rearrange music in the iTunes Music folder
3.) write any information to the ID3 tags
4.) do anything you just said it did

Gapless playback info, SoundCheck auto-normalization info, and just about any other info is stored in the iTunes library files (both .itl and .xml) under ~/Music/iTunes or c:\users\person\music\iTunes

Blessedly, the Mac version DOES do #1 and #2, and it doesn't take a rocket surgeon to figure out that the first level folder is the artist and the second level folders are the albums. And "better" yet, WMP can actually find all the files if you let iTunes keep things organized.
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Thu Sep 11, 2008 6:34 am

Well then I'm glad they have improved it. I shall withhold further negative judgement until I have a chance to check out the recent versions.
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Thu Sep 11, 2008 10:05 am

So I took a look at this new visualizer, not that I use them really. I don't like having the macbook fans turn on unless they have to. Anyways... yeah it's okay. It looks like what might be going on in the Hadron Collider, actually. :)
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Fri Nov 21, 2008 10:55 am

I have been running iTunes on my PC for years. I have an airport I use not only as a wireless router, but to play my iTunes through my home stereo speakers. After upgrading to iTunes 8, I now receive the following message when I try to play through my stereo:

"An error occurred while connecting to the remote speaker. An unknown error occured (-3256)."

As far as I can tell, there are no problems with the airport. It continues to function as it always has as a wireless router, and iTunes has no problems recognizing the device. The error only occurs when I try to connect. Any advice on what I can do to fix this?

Thank you.
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Fri Nov 21, 2008 11:11 am

you're apparently not alone. Never used AirTunes or Airport Express to try it for myself, though.

http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jsp ... 6&tstart=0
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Re: iTunes 8

Postposted on Fri Nov 21, 2008 11:26 am

It's nice to know this isn't just a PC issue. Apple may actually try to fix it.
In the meantime, it looks like all my Christmas music will be LP only.
Thanks for the link.
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