Gapless playback on iPod Nano?

Discussion in 'iPod' started by c-Row, Jan 24, 2007.

  1. macrumors 65816


    The forum search didn't return anything useful, so... does the latest generation Nano (4 GB) support gapless playback? My old 4G iPod naturally doesn't, but I got some DJ mix albums which would profit from this feature of course.

    Thanks! :)
  2. macrumors 68000


    I have the 2nd gen 4Gig nano, and yes, it supports gapless playback. I've tested it with some trance mix CDs of mine, and it works as expected.

    I believe (and I'm open to correction-- I am a Macrumors n00b, after all) that the 2nd gen nanos supported gapless from the get-go.
  3. macrumors regular

    What is gapless playback and when should I rip a cd gapless?
  4. macrumors 68000


    Gapless playback refers to the continuous playback of consecutive tracks of an album without any perceivable "skip" between songs. This is very important when listening to, for example, a dance mix CD or a continuous live album. On previous iPod models, there would be a slight but noticeable silence as the player came to the end of one track and started another. Gapless playback allows the enjoyment of the original flow of the album while maintaining each separate track, as on the source CD.

    iTunes 7.0.1 (?) and higher automatically encodes gapless playback information for all imported music. If you upgrade to the current version, it will automatically determine gapless playback info for all songs in the Library when first launched. (This can take a few minutes if you have a large collection.)
  5. macrumors 601

    Forgive my ignorance, but I don't understand all of the hoopla over gapless playback. I have a 1st gen 4gig Nano and iTunes 6 (I have never upgraded to the "gapless" iTunes 7) and it seems to me like the space between songs is already far too short, with one song running into the next. This may be fine if the songs are of similar type, but when playing shuffle with a wide mix of styles it can be quite jarring. I certainly would not want the gap to be any less than it is already. I find myself using my Nano less and less because of this; as a matter of fact, if I ever buy another mp3 player it will probably NOT be an iPod because of this one feature (otherwise I love it). And no, before anybody asks, crossfade is turned OFF. Why can't the gap be settable?
  6. macrumors regular

    Interesting so you are saying that if I rip a CD itunes will automatically rip it as gapless?
  7. macrumors 6502

  8. macrumors 68000


    The "gap" is an artifact introduced during audio compression. All lossy compression schemes like to generate regularly-sized packets of data, often inserting unused data to "round out" the last packet. This artifact is rendered by the player as silence.

    In an album that has each individual track fading to silence anyway, it's not noticeable. However, an album that has continuous sound from one track to another will exhibit the silence artifacts, and in c-Row's case, it will make the dance mix go off-beat, ruining the "continuous" feel of the mix.

    What gapless playback does is create an insanely-quick crossfade, using the information iTunes encodes into the file, to start the audible part of the next song the instant the unused data is reached.

    Answering your question another way: I don't see why Apple wouldn't introduce a setting that allows for a 1-second pause between tracks, if enough users let them know.
  9. macrumors regular

    Cool thanks for the info.

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