iTunes--Can you REMOVE Album Art? (En Masse)

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by akdj, Jan 6, 2014.

  1. akdj macrumors 65816


    Mar 10, 2008
    Hi All---
    I've been pairing down our libraries on our they've now exceeded 105,000 'songs'. It's not all music. Maybe 15,000 EFX, presidential speeches and famous audio bits, etc. Maybe 45-50,000 unique songs...the more popular dance songs with different remixes, etc. We use iTunes as a library manager; Serato and Traktor in the field for playback. The library is now approaching 900GB (with 100GB of 'pictures'). I used OmniDiskSweep on one of our older iMacs yesterday to figure this out. ODS will allow me to delete the Jpegs from iTunes....but I'm 'assuming' this is what it's describing (album art). There doesn't seem to be a way to 'preview' the pic in ODS....and I can't find it through the actual 'Finder' system in iTunes. Apparently it's not a visible library feature.

    My question---I don't need album art. At all. Can I safely delete the iTunes 'pics' library....AND make sure iTunes doesn't fill in the artwork on it's own after i've taken the artwork away? I know how to take the art off my artist and albums, but this is 40-50k songs on probably 35-40,000 albums (IE, lots of singles obviously). Is it safe to use OmniDiscSweep to remove the pics and do nothing to my audio library? Is there a safer way to do this? *Money isn't an issue. I don't mind paying for software to organize this's outta control*. That said, to actually take the time to cull the library is something I'm planning to do over the next 90 days in preparation for wedding season in Alaska (We are an audio and video production company....did 117 weddings this past year, a lot of corporate functions...smaller (<3,000 person) concerts, sweet 16s...a lot of diverse functions).

    If anyone has ideas---I'm all ears. It's a daunting task to go from A-Z manually CTRL clicking each album to 'remove associated album art'!

  2. Bear macrumors G3

    Jul 23, 2002
    Sol III - Terra
    I would be careful of a pictures category that large. I have about 100GB of music and the folder that is used to store Cover Artwork is about one GB. I don't think you're looking at just cover artwork. Also, artwork that is embedded in the song files will be counted as part of the songs and not as picture files.

    Might I suggest you figure out what the files really are?

    If you do decide to go through with clearing artwork:

    For a first step, in iTunes Preferences->Store Preferences make sure that "Automatically download album artwork" is not selected.

    After that, you could try selecting all of your songs and then from the right click menu, select Clear Downloaded Artwork.

    Any albums that still have artwork will need to be cleared individually as these will be the songs with the artwork embedded in the file.

    Do note that any album that has had artwork cleared will of course be picked up by the next backup as changed files.
  3. gnasher729 macrumors P6


    Nov 25, 2005
    1. Make sure everything is backed up.
    2. Make a smart play list limited to 1000 songs, with criteria "Album Artwork" = "true".
    3. In that playlist, select all, Info, Click on the artwork field, and backspace.

    It will take a while, then 1000 songs have lost their artwork.
    The smart playlist should update and show 1000 different songs, and repeat. Obviously you can take more than 1000 songs at a time. And of course follow Bear's post first.

    Note: Time Machine wants space for the latest backup, plus changes from the latest backup, so make sure you have enough space.
  4. akdj thread starter macrumors 65816


    Mar 10, 2008
    Thank YOU Gentlemen!!!!
    I think you nailed it...the smart list idea is 'Genius!'. Having to hand delete, song...album...or artist is a ridiculous task, and selecting 'all' won't allow you to remove associated album art because many records don't 'have' A/W!
    Thanks again, many times over. My library went from 882GB to 791! I'm not sure how that much space can actually be artwork....but again, with the 'sweep' it does show specific Jpegs and Music separately (but within users/music/iTunes)

    Thanks again....MUCH Appreciated (As well, Bear---Thanks for the reminder in the store to automatically uncheck the artwork---I had done it on two of the five, the other three were auto loading it;))


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