Understanding iTunes Match

Discussion in 'Apple Music, Apple Pay, iCloud, Apple Services' started by Dwalls90, Nov 13, 2011.

  1. Dwalls90, Nov 13, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2011

    Dwalls90 macrumors 601

    Dwalls90

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2009
    #1
    I'm writing this brief fact sheet up to help people understand some points about the iTunes match service.

    - An Apple iTunes Store Music-only service
    - Cost $25 per year
    - Only Available in USA initially
    - Limit of 25,000 songs
    - Songs are downloaded, not streamed (iOS devices). During the initial download, the song can be "streamed" as it is downloaded, to prevent playback lag time.
    - There is no Gb limit, it does not count against the other iCloud storage space (including free 5Gb)
    - Songs that are "matched", are made available across all match enabled devices, at 256Kbps AAC with meta-data
    - Songs that are NOT "matched", are made available across all match enabled devices, as is.

    In order for songs to be matched:
    - Must be above 96Kbps
    - Must be authorized by your iTunes account if they have DRM
     
  2. 78-bit macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2011
    #2
    Will iTunes Match replace/match the less than 256Kbps AAC tracks on my Mac or only my iPhone?
     
  3. Dwalls90 thread starter macrumors 601

    Dwalls90

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2009
    #3
    Yes. Although this is unconfirmed, if the bitrate is below 100kbps then it won't get matched. All other matched songs on your iTunes library on your computer will be matched and yiou can download iTMS quality songs.
     
  4. Sky Blue Guest

    Sky Blue

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    Jan 8, 2005
    #4
    Source?
     
  5. macfanboy macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 5, 2007
    #5
    there
     
  6. Tinmania macrumors 68040

    Tinmania

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2011
    Location:
    Aridzona
    #6
    It's 96kbps and Apple clearly states it:


    http://www.apple.com/legal/itunes/us/terms.html



    Michael

    ----------

    Not exactly true.

    When listening to tracks in iTunes you must explicitly choose to download a cloud track. If you only play it is is streamed.



    Michael
     
  7. BigDukeSix macrumors 6502a

    BigDukeSix

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    #7
    Good info. Thanks!
    If I upload music to iTunes Match, does it also still reside in my iTunes library in my computer?
    Will my iPhone which is still running iOS 4.2.10 be able to download from iTunes Match?
     
  8. Tinmania macrumors 68040

    Tinmania

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2011
    Location:
    Aridzona
    #8
    Yes it is not removed from the computer with which you used to match it. It is unchanged.

    If you were to delete the matched tracks you would see the cloud icon meaning you can then download them from iCloud at 256kbps DRM free. But don't do this before backing up your iTunes library--if you even want to do this.

    No... only 5.x will be able to use iTunes Match.



    Michael
     
  9. neko girl macrumors 6502a

    neko girl

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2011
    #9
    Will iTunes Match still downconvert to 128 kbps for iOS devices? The music on my iPhone @ 128 is currently 10 GB and there's no other way it would fit on it right now..

    I don't see anyone asking this question, strangely enough.
     
  10. BigDukeSix macrumors 6502a

    BigDukeSix

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    #10
    Thanks.
    My wife and I share the iTunes account. We each have a Mac.
    If we sign up for iTunes Match, I assume it will automatically migrate the songs that either of us purchase to the other computer as it does now, as well as to the iCloud storage?
    Just want to be sure how it works before committing.
     
  11. thatoneguy82 macrumors 68000

    thatoneguy82

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    Location:
    Beach Cities, CA
    #11
    iTunes is halfway through Step 2 of the match process and not going real slow, I expect Step 3 will much slower. I'm sure it's because I have ~13,000 that it needs process.

    Another question:

    I was about turn on iTunes match on iPhone but some message came up warning me that if I agree using iTunes match, the current music on iPhone wil be replaced by iTunes match. Is there a way to prevent this? I thought iTunes match would just be some sort feature that you can use to access your song. I don't like the of not having any of the physical songs that I chose myself.

    So, anyway to prevent this? Or this is how it works? I didn't go through with hit since 1) iTunes match wasn't finished 2) i didn't know yet if I want to delete all songs on my phone and always be dependent on some some data connection to play music (assuming this is how it works)
     
  12. monkeylui macrumors 6502

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    Oct 11, 2011
    Location:
    A Galaxy far, far away
    #12
    I like this idea and I'd be willing to pay. But I want to stream, like I do with gMusic and Amazon, which I can also download from to my Mac when I want too.

    We'll see what else comes out of it, if anything. I like the idea of having this digital hub, even though I have 3 of them now, Amazon (books, movies, music), gMusic (Music), iTunes (Music, Movies, Apps, books). So again, we'll see.

    Thanks for the info.
     
  13. JoelMarcey macrumors 6502

    JoelMarcey

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    Location:
    Northern California
    #13
    Matched and Uploaded Songs From Same Album?

    What I am finding strange is that sometimes, within the same album, some songs are matched and others are not matched, but uploaded instead. I checked to make sure the album, and thus songs, exist on iTunes, and they do ... so I am not sure why this is happening?

    For example, using Red Hot Chili Peppers Blood Sugar Sex Magik as an example:

    Breaking the Girl - matched
    The Power of Equality - uploaded

    :confused:

    And I ripped this album straight from the CD.
     
  14. bfranz macrumors newbie

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    Oct 11, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix
    #14
    Same thing is happening to me. I'm still uploading in step 3, so I'll have to wait to play around with it, but it's interesting.
     
  15. WasoBH macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    #15
    I have a problem here with iTunes match, can you help me?

    I made a test with a ripped song from a CD here, I took off all the tags from this song, include the album artwork and I uploaded it to iTunes Match, i thinked that the iTunes Match would add all the tags and the album artwork to that song but it not happened...

    The iTunes Match only converts the music to AAC 256? or it will be able to update the songs tags?

    Thanks
     
  16. Dwalls90 thread starter macrumors 601

    Dwalls90

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2009
    #16
    If it's matched, then it's 256Kbps, period. If it's uploaded, then it's uploaded at whatever format it resides on your computer (96-320 kbps). And match doesn't download every single song so you'll have plenty of room, it only makes every song available for an initial stream and then downloads it after you play it.

    Right. Enable automatic music downloads and itunes match on both devices and the computer, and then whenever you buy a song on any of those three electronics it should automatically either download, or appear as in the cloud available for download.

    The better organized your library, the faster the match process is. However, after the initialization, all matching/syncing will be much faster since it will only add/remove changes to your library (unless you're adding thousands of songs per day).

    At this time you have to choose between locally stored music and iTunes match. To be honest, I'm not sure why you wouldn't want iTunes match, as it makes every single song available. I it's a con if you don't have wifi or unlimited data and are afraid of going over usage on 3G, but you can select and download some of the songs when you have fast/unlimited data speeds and then they will reside on your phone until you delete them.

    I have that same quirk. I'm guessing the versions of your songs aren't exactly the same as the official iTunes Music Store ones. Or, maybe it's a matching feature that will be improved over time, as it's clear match was released pretty quickly.

    My understanding is that iTunes uses YOUR tags, YOUR artwork, YOUR information, but only will use it's own music file, if matched. I think people preferred their own data they spent a long time editing and perfecting for their own needs.
     
  17. BigDukeSix macrumors 6502a

    BigDukeSix

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    #17
    Dwalls90, Thanks for the info. One other question, once the music is uploaded to the cloud from my Mac, does it still reside on the harddrive or does it disappear?
     
  18. efusco macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2011
    #18
    Same issue here. Just ripped a new CD that I know is available on iTunes and maybe 25% of the songs are showing up. There's no "little cloud" button to allow me to download from the cloud suggesting it didn't match at all. Further, I can't find any way to re-Match from the PC I used in the first place.

    Is there some way to push the system to recheck for those missing songs? Love this idea, but now I'm stuck listening to about 8 out of 27 songs off my new CD.:(
     
  19. Tinmania macrumors 68040

    Tinmania

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2011
    Location:
    Aridzona
    #19
    That is not actually what it does. It does not initially stream and then download after playing. It downloads while it plays. It is simultaneous listen and download (Apple's description on iOS).

    If you stop or switch tracks before song finishes downloading it will leave the partially downloaded track in place (with a circular download indicator replacing the cloud icon). It will finish downloading when and if it is played again (or if the whole playlist is downloaded).



    I don't see how an organized library would be faster: it looks at the waveform not the metadata. During the beta I removed all metadata from a test iTunes database. I renamed all tracks song1, song2, etc. All tracks matched exactly as if they had complete metadata. In fact it was faster as there was almost no metadata and no album art to upload. But it matched the same number of songs with metadata as without.

    Later I not only removed metadata from an old Blondie track, I completely edited to make it seem as if it was a Beatles song: filename, metadata, even album art and lyrics. It was matched to the correct Blondie song, regardless of metadata.



    Michael
     
  20. Dwalls90 thread starter macrumors 601

    Dwalls90

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2009
    #20
    Yes, local music will NOT be affected. You can, at your will, delete your music from that computer though, and then stream it through iTunes from iCloud, or even redownload the music from iCloud into iTunes.

    I haven't had this problem. Are you sure you ever actually uploaded the files to iCloud initially? The only songs that will go to iCloud automatically are itunes music store purchases. All others must be sent up (usually a streamlined, sometimes automatic, process itunes will do). In iTunes go to store and then "update itunes match".

    Downloading = retrieving a file from the internet for later use.
    Streaming = immediately viewing a file while is locally cached and downloaded, simultaneously

    Even when you stream content, it is technically still locally downloaded. So yes, it actually does stream on the initial play.

    By saying "organized", it is defined that the higher caliber the music and more accurately labeled your music is in relation to iTunes Music Store, the less work match has to do, thus the process is faster.
     
  21. Heebeejeebies macrumors regular

    Heebeejeebies

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    Nov 9, 2011
    Location:
    New Jersey
    #21
    Come on people, read the whole thread before you ask another question.

    If you enable iTunes Match from your Mac, the files that are on your Mac will stay on your Mac, unless you actively delete it from your local hard drive. If you do this, all your songs are on the cloud (which is a risk in itself, but that's not the question).

    Secondly, from what I understand, downloading a song on one of your iDevices actually downloads to your cache, and once you run out of room, songs that you play least often or haven't played in a while will be automatically deleted from the cache, thus streaming.
     
  22. Tinmania macrumors 68040

    Tinmania

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    Location:
    Aridzona
    #22
    I responded to this comment: "And match doesn't download every single song so you'll have plenty of room, it only makes every song available for an initial stream and then downloads it after you play it."

    All I meant was that it does not download after it is played it is downloaded while it play is played. Again, simultaneous listen and download.


    Streaming generally means streaming via buffered cache with no user access to that cache. Netflix for instance: you don't have local access by simply playing a movie. iTunes Match on iOS devices, other than Apple TV, do not stream in that sense.

    Downloading generally means waiting till it is 100% downloaded before having access to the file. You can choose to do this on iOS without listening to the track as it is being downloaded.

    Simultaneous listen and download combines these two. To portray it as one or the other is IMO inaccurate. iOS can listen and download or download. But it cannot just stream (other than ATV).

    iTunes, on the other hand, can do all three: you can stream by just choosing to play a song and it is not downloaded locally, you can listen and download, or you can just download without listening at all.



    Again, the labeling of the music made zero difference. It took the same amount of time to match when the music had 100% metadata vs no metadata whatsoever.



    Michael
     
  23. zhenya macrumors 603

    zhenya

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2005
    #23
    This doesn't appear to be the case. When I turned on Match on our iPhones, the locally stored music remained and the rest of the library was just merged with that. If this is the case for everyone, then you can continue to sync your own playlists so that you always have a subset of your music on the device, but Match just gives you access to everything else if you want it.
     
  24. dias.leo macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2011
    #24
    Where iTunes Match will download songs to?

    Where the upgraded tracks I download from iTunes Match will be saved?
    I have a very large library (250Gb). My library is stored at my profile folder, but it points to media files stored on an external hard disk. If iTunes Match, downloads all 25.000 256kbps files to my Macbook's internal disk, it'll simply run out of space very quickly. So, the ideal world to me would be, having iTunes over-writing the files on their original location (external disk).
    Is this what happens?
     
  25. milo macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2003
    #25
    In the iTunes prefs you can tell it where your media folder is. Point it to the folder on your external drive. Once you've done that, test it with one song to make sure it's going to the right place.
     

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