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JHummer
Oct 26, 2011, 08:24 PM
Is iTunes match a good idea to do? Is it worth the money? Will you be able to keep the higher quality songs if you delete the lower quality ones or decide to stop paying for it?

I am thinking about buying it, but I keep having all of these questions about it



jekyl
Oct 28, 2011, 10:16 AM
I'm in kind of the same boat. I ripped my entire cd collection at the default bit rate and regret it ALMOST enough to re-rip them all but not quite that much. I would be totally worth it to me to get the high bitrate Match just to not have to unpack those disks again. My hope is to do the match and have 256bit rips end up in my iTunes folders and on my two iPods.

JHawkZZ
Oct 28, 2011, 11:41 AM
I'm in the developer beta for it and can answer some of the questions you had.

Anything you download from them is 256kbps DRM free, and you get to keep it even if you do not renew iTunes Match. Think of iTunes Match as a download service you're paying for. Anything you download is yours, but without paying you cannot continue to download stuff.

The way it works is: It adds everything you've purchased and don't already have downloaded into your iTunes library with a little 'download' icon on it. For existing songs, if you delete one, the download icon will appear and you can re-download it. That's how you can upgrade it to higher quality. Here are two examples:

Example 1:
You have a 128kbps DRM protected song you bought several years ago.
You delete it, and a download icon appears next to it.
You click that, and it downloads a new copy of the song at 256kbps with no DRM.
It's now yours, and you have effectively upgraded your song to higher quality with no DRM.

Example 2:
You have a 128kbps song you did NOT buy from iTunes.
You delete it, and a download icon appears next to it.
You click that, and it downloads a new copy of the song at 256kbps with no DRM.
It is also yours.

In both examples you replaced a lower quality protected version of your song with a higher quality DRM free version, and they are yours to keep regardless of whether you continue to pay for iTunes Match or not.

Hope this helps!

tharris0101
Oct 28, 2011, 11:54 AM
First off, yes you can keep the files after you quit Match but they will no longer be available on the cloud (so basically you're back in the same boat but with higher bitrates).

I think Match will be good for some and not good for others. Here are sort of my feelings on it:

DO get Match if you have multiple computers you'd like your music on and find it a pain to keep in sync.

DO get Match if you have a lot of sub-256k encoded music.

DO get Match if having your entire music library available on your iOS devices is important to you, or if having your iPhone/iPad/iTouch be totally computer independent is important to you.

DO NOT get Match if you are obsessed with keeping your iTunes highly organized through ID3 tags or have all of your music ripped at 256 or above already and only need it on one computer.

DO NOT get Match if buy all of your music through iTunes already. iTunes in the Cloud already has you covered.

Tinmania
Oct 28, 2011, 12:07 PM
It's also a good way to clean up an iTunes library that goes way back and whose metadata, or bitrate, is less than "ideal." I started ripping CDs before there were any standards and cleaning it all up was one of the things I had always planned to "get around to" but never did.

Supposedly, iTunes Match uses the same recognition software as the iTunes add-in, iTunes TuneUp. In fact I nearly bought TuneUp just as Match became available in beta. So for me it was a no-brainer and I got it.

It can also be useful if you have purchased a lot of iTunes music before it went DRM free but didn't pay to get it in iTunes plus DRM-free format. I know people who paid way more than $20 just to update to iTunes plus for their purchased iTunes music.

One other thing: while the music downloaded from iTunes Match is DRM free, like iTunes Plus tracks it contains your iTunes ID. So it is a passive form of protection but one you should be aware.



Michael

JHummer
Oct 28, 2011, 12:30 PM
So basically if I pay for it, I can upgrade the songs, delete the lower quality ones, and all my music will be better regardless of if it was bad quality or not? Is that what you are saying? If so that is a really great deal.

Tinmania
Oct 28, 2011, 12:37 PM
So basically if I pay for it, I can upgrade the songs, delete the lower quality ones, and all my music will be better regardless of if it was bad quality or not? Is that what you are saying? If so that is a really great deal.
Well for the most part, yes. However...

iTunes Match will only upgrade tracks that it has in its database for download. If it is an obscure track, unrecognizable, or one that Apple does not have the rights to then the original track from you iTunes database is uploaded to iCloud--and when you download it you will get back the exact same track that was uploaded. How many, if any, of your tracks fall into this category I cannot say.



Michael

MacDryCleaner
Oct 28, 2011, 01:32 PM
My big complaint about iTunes is that the artwork frequently does not match the correct song.

For example, let's say I download a song from Michael Jackson's thriller album. It might be that I'll play a song from that album but it will display the artwork for say I journey album.

I don't know why this happens but this is the way it happens. So, I'm wondering if this is fixed with iTunes match?

JHummer
Oct 29, 2011, 11:11 AM
Well for the most part, yes. However...

iTunes Match will only upgrade tracks that it has in its database for download. If it is an obscure track, unrecognizable, or one that Apple does not have the rights to then the original track from you iTunes database is uploaded to iCloud--and when you download it you will get back the exact same track that was uploaded. How many, if any, of your tracks fall into this category I cannot say.



Michael

I believe that all my music is in the iTunes database, so no problems with that.

Tinmania
Oct 29, 2011, 11:22 AM
I believe that all my music is in the iTunes database, so no problems with that.
Then iTunes Match is perfect for you.

Alas I started ripping CDs long before iTunes came out and I humbly admit I never got around to "fixing" metadata and whatnot. It's always been one of those I would get around to but never did.

I was about to buy iTunes Tuneup to do it for me when iTunes Match was announced. After reading more about Match it seems it uses the same wave patter recognition engine as Tuneup. So, hopefully, for the same price of iTunes Tuneup, Match will do nearly the same thing plus a lot more.



Michael

mox358
Oct 29, 2011, 01:14 PM
I wasn't sure I had a need for iTunes Match at first... but it seems like a better idea the more I think about it, just to clean up a lot of my old ripped files. I buy everything from iTunes now, but I have a lot of old files that could use the quality upgrade that were ripped at 128 and 192.

soLoredd
Oct 29, 2011, 04:34 PM
Can you clarify something for me, please? Match will not let me stream the music that is in my library, correct? So, if I am out and about with my iPhone, I still have to download the song to my iPhone in order to listen to it?

And has Apple announced a release date for Match?

Grahamwho
Nov 1, 2011, 11:24 PM
Can you clarify something for me, please? Match will not let me stream the music that is in my library, correct? So, if I am out and about with my iPhone, I still have to download the song to my iPhone in order to listen to it?

And has Apple announced a release date for Match?


Yes and no. First off match does let you stream music. Its kind of a matter of semantics. What happens is once your done matching and uploading. All of your music will be visible on your iPhone, with a new little cloud icon next to each track. If you click the song, it will immediately start playing and downloading in the background. If you click the cloud it will just download to your device and not play. So essentially it is streaming, the only difference is when your done listening to the song the file remains on your phone, so if you were to move to someplace without wifi or cell service you will still be able to listen to the songs you've already downloaded or listened to. Plus you can always delete songs from the device if it fills up. I've been using it for a while now and i love it. I went from having about 5 gigs of free space on my 32 gb ip4 to like 25 gigs free. And now all 70 gb of my music is available to listen to. It's awesome.

The only thing I'm really not sure about is if you were to stream/download enough music to fill up your device if iOS 5 would automatically delete the cache for more space like it does with other temp or cache files. Either way it's real easy to delete music off your device in iOS 5.

JHummer
Nov 2, 2011, 05:26 PM
Any word when it will be released to the public?

Alonzo84
Nov 13, 2011, 11:11 AM
I am all for iTunes Match, but what is the real advantage to higher bitrate tracks? All the CDs I added to iTunes years ago are 128 kbps and I reripped a few tracks in AIFF and Apple Lossless to see if I could tell a difference, which I could not. The only difference I could tell was the size of the file. I was listening through a pair of Shure SRH440s, which are great headphones, but is the difference in sound quality only noticeable through extremely high quality gear, or do you just need better ears to tell the difference?

JHummer
Dec 10, 2011, 06:16 PM
Does iTunes Match tell you which songs are of lower quality so that you can replace them, or do you have to figure that out yourself?

mrholder
Dec 15, 2011, 09:15 AM
Will iTunes Match retain current playcounts if all 128Kbps music were replaced with 256Kbps drm free tracks?

If you delete an album, after it has been matched and played a few times, and then re-download it on another device, will it retain the last played and playcount information?

I'm thinking about subscribing, but just wanted to clarify.