Ipod Classic's "Shuffle Songs" feature is not random at all..same artists often

Discussion in 'iPod' started by Siciliano611, Mar 29, 2011.

  1. macrumors regular

    Jul 8, 2008
    I have had my 120gb ipod classic for nearly 2 years now and I have been realizing for a while that when I use the "shuffle songs" feature it basically cycles through the same artist's songs everytime. I searched on this a lot last night and saw many others have the same problem, is there any good solution to this? Would restoring the ipod and putting all 12k of my songs back on it do anything? Thanks in advance....
  2. macrumors member

    Sep 22, 2008
    Haven't used a Classic in years, but the shuffle feature shuffles through the songs of the current selection, or not? So if you invoke it from the all songs overview of an artist, it will obviously shuffle through those only.
  3. thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 8, 2008
    No I mean the shuffle songs feature...the same artists basically show up a lot, and certain ones i havent heard through shuffle in a LONG LONG time....doesn't seem random is too random
  4. macrumors newbie

    Mar 17, 2011
    Chicago, IL
    The same artists show up a lot because it is random. Random means exactly that: at any given time, every song has an equal percent chance of being played next. I would assume you just need to keep shuffling. I mean, if you got one song from every artist, that wouldn't be random, now would it?
  5. macrumors 6502


    Mar 6, 2007
    I've noticed this on a lot of iPod models...
    I understand how random works... but the probability of drawing the only two songs by the same artists in my library back to back repeatedly is ridiculously small...
  6. macrumors member

    Nov 4, 2009
    Do you rate your songs? I think there's a setting option that causes higher-rated songs to be played more often.
  7. macrumors 65816


    Nov 19, 2006
    Renfrew, Scotland
    Where does it say that shuffle is random?

    I find my Classic will also go through a phase, one day it will play several Rolling Stones songs but not consecutively. Other days it will do it with another artist. Like Alan64 said, my higher rated songs get played more.

    Not sure what algorithm is at work but it isn't quite random.
  8. macrumors 65816


    Feb 7, 2011
  9. macrumors 68020


    Oct 24, 2004
    Northants, UK

    I had a 3rd gen iPod for years.

    Have most of Queens catalogue.

    Did they ever turn up when playing random songs?...
  10. macrumors member

    May 17, 2010
    it's cognitive bias. you notice when two songs by the same artist play, you don't when they don't.

    sorry, shuffle *is* random, you are not.
  11. macrumors 68020


    Oct 24, 2004
    Northants, UK
    I also own a bucket load of Stones albums, and they were on every other song.
  12. macrumors 6502a


    Aug 16, 2009
    New Zealand
    I wonder who is better at being random, your human brain or a computer... :rolleyes:
  13. macrumors 65816

    Jul 11, 2008
    If it really bothers you, restore seems to "reset" whatever algorithm apple uses. I do agree that the iPod tends to favor songs after a few weeks of using it and I'm pretty sure if you are using the rating system that it tends to favor higher rated songs.

    Alternatively you could fix this issue by creating a smart playlist that follows these rules:
    Last Played - is not in the last - 2 weeks (or whatever date you want)
  14. macrumors member

    Nov 22, 2010
    Higher rated and most played songs almost always get played when in shuffle mode. Also, I noticed that my iPod plays songs from the same artist a lot, especially if there are many songs under that one artist.
  15. macrumors 6502a

    Feb 27, 2011
    Does not seem to be the case on my iPod touch and my friend's old iPod classic.
  16. macrumors newbie

    Mar 10, 2013
    Random or Not

    The Shuffle Song feature in both my iPhone and iPad have the same problem you've described. Regardless of how many songs are in my playlists, the same artist comes up back-to-back until I manually forward to the next selection. I'm talking about 3-4 songs in a row by the same artist, regardless of how many of this artist's songs comprise the playlist.

    Definitely another one of Apple's glitches that people seem to accept as proper functionality even though I am able to get a true random selection on my other non-Apple devices with the exact same playlists.
  17. macrumors regular

    Dec 2, 2010
    My iPod Classic did this too. I just thought that due to my music collection being rather vast and consisting of three main artists that had the most songs combined that it would be obvious that songs from those artists would get played back to back more often.

    Also, I am sure you can set it so that higher rated songs are played more often, as mentioned already.
  18. macrumors 6502


    May 18, 2012
    South part of North
    This phenomenon is thoroughly discussed in Steven Levy's book "The Perfect Thing" in the chapter "Shuffle" ;-)
  19. macrumors 68020

    Dec 13, 2012
    Southern California
    Thinking Apple may discontinue these at some point. I just bought a spare. It's a very handy model to have. It's large capacity allows me to keep years of music on it.

Share This Page