Is there any way to "fix" mismatched iTunes Match results?

Discussion in 'Apple Music, Apple Pay, iCloud, Apple Services' started by paulisme, Nov 15, 2011.

  1. paulisme macrumors 6502

    Dec 15, 2008
    Charleston, SC
    iTunes Match found several matches for tracks from my Beatles in Mono box set, but those matches turned out to be the stereo versions from the iTunes Store. For those of us who actually care about the recording and not just the content, is there any way to fix mismatches like this? If iTunes Match decides that a song in your library matches a song in its store, is there a way to correct it if it's wrong?
  2. geg macrumors newbie

    Nov 15, 2011
    There doesn't seem to be any way to fix this. In addition, we have no control over getting older, dynamic masterings replaced with newer, sometimes dynamically-squashed "loudness wars" versions. Match also seems to not always be able to recognize alternative mixes as separate versions. I even tried to Match Steven McDonald's "Redd Blood Cells" project (where he added bass to the White Stripes' "White Blood Cells") and sure enough, some of the songs are being "matched" as if they were the original White Stripes album. This would be workable if there was a way to override it, but there doesn't seem to be. So, if you can't get Match to work, you simply can't listen to the music in question on your device. And that's a problem.

    And the 96 kbps limit is a hinderence if you have any early 20th century music, as that's often ripped in mono at lower bitrates (80 kbps = 160 kbps stereo, after all, and the dynamic range doesn't really require more to sound good). So: seems like there are lots of problems for anyone who's not just trying to sync up their smallish mainstream collection. Or for someone who fits that but has something like the Beatles in mono.

    In addition, there are lots of errors that are problematic, especially with a large collection. "Duplicates" that just aren't duplicates, for one. "An error occurred" on a lot of tracks, that you have to find, go back in, and try to submit to Match again (if there's an error, why wouldn't iTunes try to process the track again itself? Is anyone EVER going to say "oh, okay, I don't need that track"?)

    Anyway, I'm really not seeing this as ready for prime time...

  3. oxocube macrumors member

    May 30, 2007
    I have the mono concern as well (yeah, another Beatles in Mono owner here).

    What if the tags are such that the track names (and/or album names) had something clearly distinguishing them from their stereo counterparts. E.g., track named Yesterday (Mono) instead of simply Yesterday. Might that force iTunes match to realize it's not the stereo track and to not do the match?
  4. geg macrumors newbie

    Nov 15, 2011
    I know for sure album names don't always matter, as many of mine have been altered with the year added for sorting purposes and tracks still match fine. I tried the trick of adding something to the name of a track but iTunes hasn't gotten to it yet. I suspect it won't because Match seems to be taking little samples of the audio, hence it not recognizing alternate mixes, different editions, etc.
  5. tharris0101 macrumors member

    Apr 15, 2010
    I'm a little worried about my new remaster Pink Floyd albums. They matched, but it is going to take a bit of A/Bing with some good headphones for me to figure out if it matched the remasters or the older versions.

    Also, can someone verify that all of the Beatles stuff in iTunes is the 2009 remasters, correct?
  6. geg, Nov 16, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2011

    geg macrumors newbie

    Nov 15, 2011
    As much as I've been complaining about this, I do wonder that if we have to A/B something extensively, maybe we're expecting too much out of this system? I understand how Match might not be able to determine which mastering something is, but I would hope at least they could figure out if something is mono or stereo! I've had a similar issue in reverse with the band Madness -- they recently did a bunch of remasters which mostly are poster children for "loudness wars" mastering -- over-compressed, peaks-sawed-off kind of mastering. I'd like to be able to listen to my previously-ripped versions, but I'm assuming Apple has the most recent you, I haven't strapped on the headphones yet. For bad errors I hope they do initiate some sort of forced-upload feature...they might have to limit it somewhat to prevent audiophile-types from uploading their entire libraries, but anything would be good.

    For issues like which edition of any album do we get, if they would at least build a manual-sync feature into it for selected tracks...maybe let us make a playlist and force that to sync manually, that would help a lot. I mean, if we can sync podcasts directly from iTunes and not over the cloud, why not that? For me it would address most of these problems in a practical manner --I'd like to at least have the option of actually listening to the right versions of my music until they fix the glitch!
  7. milo macrumors 604

    Sep 23, 2003
    True that many remasters would be difficult to tell just from the waveform. But once they determine the proper song, they certainly could look at the metadata and if it contains something like (2006 remaster) use that to assist in matching to the proper version.

    Or heck, with songs that have multiple versions/remasters would it kill them to bring up a box "Multiple versions of this song were found, click the right one"?
  8. tristancollins macrumors newbie

    Feb 22, 2012
    iTunes match comparison tool

    Hey all,

    thought I'd share this script that I've hacked together to compare the 'new' m4as Match provides to the 'old' mp3s they replaced. In this simple version the comparison is made using a DRC tool. Further details here:

    # Script to compare my original mp3s to the new 'matched' versions
    # Copyright (C) 2012 W Tristan Collins - All Rights Reserved
    # Do what the hell you like with this.
    SAVEIFS=$IFS # save the old IFS variable
    IFS=$'\n\b' # change IFS to cope with spaces in paths/filenames
    oldFILES=source/* # directory of old mp3s
    newFILES='/Users/Tristan/Music/iTunes/iTunes Music/*' # iTunes music directory
    extension='.mp3' # set the extension we are looking for, in this case mp3
    # prepare output file
    echo Name,Old Dynamic Compression,New Dynamic Compression > out.csv
    echo Name Old New
    for file in $oldFILES # for each of the original mp3s
    oldNAME=`basename $file $extension` # strip the path and extension
    newNAMEarray=(`find $newFILES -name $oldNAME\*`) # find the corresponding new file
    for i in ${newNAMEarray[*]}
    # echo "$i" # this is where the comparison could be done
    # This is a measure of Dynamic Range Compression
    # using
    # Smaller numbers are better (less obvious compression used)
    procold=$(java -jar DRC-Meter/DRC-Meter.jar "$file" | tail -c 5)
    procnew=$(java -jar DRC-Meter/DRC-Meter.jar "$i" | tail -c 5)
    echo $oldNAME $procold $procnew
    echo $oldNAME,$procold,$procnew >> out.csv
    exit 0
    Hopefully this will be of use to someone trying to identify where the new versions are drastically different to the old...
  9. tristancollins macrumors newbie

    Feb 22, 2012
    If anyone's interested, I finally ran the above script on my iTunes Library and the findings are here:

    Briefly, I found there is slightly greater DRC in the "new" iTunes Match versions of files meaning they are more compressed. However, this is only slight. The vast, vast majority of files are practically identical.


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