iTunes not writing ID3 tags, how to play MP3 disc?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by VortexOfPain, Feb 2, 2007.

  1. VortexOfPain macrumors member

    Dec 29, 2006
    Ok, two questions I just can NOT figure out. I have a large library of about 5000 songs (33gb worth) and have everything all layed out just the way I like it. All album art, Artist, Album, Year, Genre, etc. I am finding now though that this is only saving in the .xml file, not the ID3 tags. When I put these files on an external disc so I can listen at work, nothing is organized and artists, albums, etc are all blank.

    An easy way to tell is open the mp3 in quicktime and hit Command-J. If the tags are present in the file, they will show up in the Annotations section. Has anyone else experienced this? If I click on "Get Info" inside iTunes I have found that anything that is not writing tags has "encoder: unknown" even though these were all created with a previous version of iTunes.

    The only thing I have found so far is the "Convert To Mp3" option, but I hate to recompress every file I have! It's time consuming and I don't want to loose quality. It works though... by doing this, it will say "encoder: iTunes 7.0.2" and the tags are written to the files (again verified through Quicktime). There has got to be a better way to do this...

    Also frustrating is that iTunes can burn an MP3 cd but cannot play them. My car stereo has this capability, and it works just fine. I just wish I could listen to this same CD without adding to my library (since I use multiple computers), like I can do with a normal CD. It will show up on the left, and can play without copying over.

    Anyone have a fix for either of these? Even an alternative to iTunes that will play Mp3 discs from the disc - I don't need to copy them over.
  2. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Apr 3, 2004
    Adelaide, Australia
    The MP3 disc thing might be a problem with the media brand or the player brand so I'll leave it alone for now. As for the tags, have you tried Converting The ID3 Tags (not the songs) to something more recent like 2.4 or 2.3 if they're already on 2.4? :)
  3. VortexOfPain thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 29, 2006
    The MP3 disc problem is not brand or player related, I'm using this in my MacBook. What I am finding is that if you burn a normal format CD in itunes, eject it, then put it back in iTunes it will recognize it and you can play from the disc. On the other hand, an MP3 disc burned by iTunes is not read by itunes - there is no way to play from the disc.

    As for converting ID3 Tags, I have done that too but it does not update the files only the names listed in iTunes (which saves it in the .xml file). The only thing I can find which will write tags to a file is to convert all over again.

    Can anyone verify their library? Just take a few random songs, and instead of opening them in iTunes open them in Quicktime and see if they have annotations? I think there may be a big problem in iTunes that people may not know about - where your changes to what you think are the "tags" are in fact only updating the iTunes.xml file.
  4. theBB macrumors 68020


    Jan 3, 2006
    I have dragged some MP3 songs from iTunes to a Finder window, which got them copied. I created a Burn Folder and dragged every song from Finder folder onto the Burn Folder. (I could probably drag the songs from iTunes directly into the Burn Folder.) Then I burnt a data CD with those MP3s. I have taken that CD to a Windows machine and I can see every tag that I have added. The only tags that don't get written into the actual file is my WAV and AIFF files, which are probably formats not designed to carry tags.
  5. decksnap macrumors 68040


    Apr 11, 2003
    No- the tags are written to the file. Otherwise, I'd never be able to move songs between computers without rewriting the tags. Do you have a file priveleges issue on the files in question?

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