WMA Support for iPod: When?

clayj

macrumors 604
Original poster
Jan 14, 2005
7,472
180
visiting from downstream
Hey Apple,

I've got over 4700 songs ripped in WMA format (most 128kbps, some 192kbps) from CDs that I've bought over the past 20 years. I'd like to buy an iPod, but I have this thing about not wanting to convert my tracks into any other formats... when, oh when, will you add WMA support to iTunes and iPod? I'll buy an iPod if you do. :)

Sincerely,
Clay (a Visitor, but not a Switcher)
 

4409723

Suspended
Jun 22, 2001
2,222
0
clayjohanson said:
I've got over 4700 songs ripped in WMA format (most 128kbps, some 192kbps) from CDs that I've bought over the past 20 years. I'd like to buy an iPod, but I have this thing about not wanting to convert my tracks into any other formats... when, oh when, will you add WMA support to iTunes and iPod? I'll buy an iPod if you do. :)

Sincerely,
Clay (a Visitor, but not a Switcher)
The chip apple uses has WMA support but they are not going to turn it on ever I think. It's subpar compared to say AAC.
 

Blue Velvet

Moderator emeritus
Jul 4, 2004
21,652
123
If you don't want to convert your files -- which is understandable, going from one lossy format to another then you better start the big re-rip if you want an iPod...

...or buy another mp3 player that will support WMA :D
 

Sun Baked

macrumors G5
May 19, 2002
14,874
57
If Apple turned it on, they'd have to pay Microsoft for every iPod they sell.

Heck, this is MS -- Apple would also have to pay them for every copy of iTunes that's downloaded.

Remember, many of the codecs that Apple has dropped from Quicktime -- was because the companies got greedy and went from a nominal amount to serious money.

Which is why they are either only available under Pro, or as a seperate and expensive download.
 

devman

macrumors 65816
Apr 19, 2004
1,240
4
AU
gee I know one should never say never but this is about as close as it comes I think. Highly unlikely to get wma support. When you dominate you don't make it easy for competitors. MS is an endless case study of this...
 

BornAgainMac

macrumors 603
Feb 4, 2004
6,349
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Florida Resident
I wonder when WMA as an audio format will die? 2008? 2012? It probably will eventually be improved with a newer codec to improve it's quality. So that means all the CDs will have to be re-ripped.

Is the marketshare of paid WMA music under 2% yet.
 

Bear

macrumors G3
Jul 23, 2002
8,089
4
Sol III - Terra
clayjohanson said:
Hey Apple,

I've got over 4700 songs ripped in WMA format (most 128kbps, some 192kbps) from CDs that I've bought over the past 20 years. I'd like to buy an iPod, but I have this thing about not wanting to convert my tracks into any other formats... when, oh when, will you add WMA support to iTunes and iPod? I'll buy an iPod if you do. :)

Sincerely,
Clay (a Visitor, but not a Switcher)
If you ike subpar sound...

Anyway, 4700 tracks is roughly 350-400 albums. Going back to re-encode the albums into a better sound format shouldn't be that bad. As you sit and do other things on the computer feed the CDs in. It could be done a month at the most. It could probably be done in under 10 days without breaking a sweat.
 

clayj

macrumors 604
Original poster
Jan 14, 2005
7,472
180
visiting from downstream
ClarkeB said:
The question is better phrased: WMA Support for iPod: Why?
Why NOT, I would say. How about, because it will increase the potential user base even further, especially for people like me who already have thousands of WMA tracks? How about, because the iTunes software is already aware of WMA (it converts WMA to AAC) and any discussion of having to pay money to Microsoft therefore doesn't make any sense? How about, because it's the right thing to do?

I've already spent a considerable amount of time ripping my CDs into WMAs, and I don't want to have to do it again... at the same time, I don't want my music being converted from one lossy format (WMA) to another (AAC). If the iPod's chips can support WMA, then they should.

Apple can do what they like, but I'm not buying an iPod until I can play my WMAs on it, sans conversion.
 

jeremy.king

macrumors 603
Jul 23, 2002
5,478
1
Fuquay Varina, NC
clayjohanson said:
...any discussion of having to pay money to Microsoft therefore doesn't make any sense?
Perhaps you should review the licensing requirements. http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windowsmedia/licensing/consumerdevices.aspx
clayjohanson said:
I've already spent a considerable amount of time ripping my CDs into WMAs
This was your first mistake.
clayjohanson said:
but I'm not buying an iPod until I can play my WMAs on it, sans conversion.
Enjoy your Creative :rolleyes:
 

dotdotdot

macrumors 68020
Jan 23, 2005
2,381
31
Has anyone ever listened on Microsofts website the "difference" between mp3 and wma? mp3 sounds ok... but wma sounds great! why? they used a different song!!
 

clayj

macrumors 604
Original poster
Jan 14, 2005
7,472
180
visiting from downstream
kingjr3 said:
Enjoy your Creative :rolleyes:
I don't own a music player. If I did, think I'd be asking this question? (If I did, it'd be one of those Creative Windows Media machines that also plays TV and movies... something iPod doesn't do.)
 

dejo

Moderator
Staff member
Sep 2, 2004
15,725
447
The Centennial State
clayjohanson said:
Hey Apple,

I've got over 4700 songs ripped in WMA format (most 128kbps, some 192kbps) from CDs that I've bought over the past 20 years. I'd like to buy an iPod, but I have this thing about not wanting to convert my tracks into any other formats... when, oh when, will you add WMA support to iTunes and iPod? I'll buy an iPod if you do. :)

Sincerely,
Clay (a Visitor, but not a Switcher)
Did you send this feeback to Apple also?
 

Blue Velvet

Moderator emeritus
Jul 4, 2004
21,652
123
clayjohanson said:
I don't own a music player. If I did, think I'd be asking this question? (If I did, it'd be one of those Creative Windows Media machines that also plays TV and movies... something iPod doesn't do.)
So why ask about iPods & WMA if you have no intention of buying one? :confused:

No flames, just curious...
 

Mechcozmo

macrumors 603
Jul 17, 2004
5,215
2
tykles said:
I think keeping WMA off of the iPod is what they refer to in the industry as "quality control".
Hehe... so WMA is 'good' but AAC is 'lossy'?
Who is winning the marketshare wars now?

WMA='lossy'
AAC= 'Good'

:D

(AAC is actually very good, IMO, and if you want better quality but smaller files try either upping your encoding bitrate OR try Apple LossLess)
 

devman

macrumors 65816
Apr 19, 2004
1,240
4
AU
clayjohanson said:
Why NOT, I would say. How about, because it will increase the potential user base even further, especially for people like me who already have thousands of WMA tracks?
They already dominate. In that position you force people to your format. You force them by not supporting the other. You don't do anything to legitimize the competitive format.

What's ironic about this is it is straight from the MS playbook.

clayjohanson said:
Apple can do what they like, but I'm not buying an iPod until I can play my WMAs on it, sans conversion.
Correct, they can do what they like. You can also do what you like which is to not buy an iPod.

(p.s. and off-topic, wonderful collection you have)
 

Brize

macrumors 6502a
Jun 13, 2004
732
0
Europe
Clay: I can understand your frustration, but WMA is a proprietary format. Had Microsoft adopted a standard encoder, this probably wouldn't be an issue. As such, your frustration with Apple is perhaps misplaced.

As others have mentioned, WMA offers poor sound quality when compared to mp3 or mp4 (AAC), so perhaps this is a blessing in disguise. Regardless of which player you end up purchasing, it would be a good idea to invest some time in re-ripping your CDs to a better, universal format, such as mp3.

Finally, what's the difference between Apple locking out WMA and other manufacturers locking out AAC? Those of us who use AAC are in the same position as you: our choice of portable music players is limited because we've chosen to use a format that doesn't enjoy universal support.
 

Rod Rod

macrumors 68020
Sep 21, 2003
2,174
2
Las Vegas, NV
clayjohanson said:
Hey Apple,

I've got over 4700 songs ripped in WMA format (most 128kbps, some 192kbps) from CDs that I've bought over the past 20 years. I'd like to buy an iPod, but I have this thing about not wanting to convert my tracks into any other formats... when, oh when, will you add WMA support to iTunes and iPod? I'll buy an iPod if you do. :)

Sincerely,
Clay (a Visitor, but not a Switcher)
Hi Clay, here's an idea:

1. In iTunes convert all 4700 songs into AAC.
2. Organize everything (artist, album, track name) if it doesn't organize itself.
3. In the coming year, re-rip one or two albums a day. Use the CDDB to speed everything along. Add album art for a nice finishing touch.

I see your point about re-ripping everything. However, with a gradual approach it'll be manageable.

What makes the whole endeavor worthwhile is how great iTunes and iPod are together.

By the way, you're not a visitor, you're an adder. :)
 

Sun Baked

macrumors G5
May 19, 2002
14,874
57
Mechcozmo said:
Hehe... so WMA is 'good' but AAC is 'lossy'?
Who is winning the marketshare wars now?

WMA='lossy'
AAC= 'Good'

:D

(AAC is actually very good, IMO, and if you want better quality but smaller files try either upping your encoding bitrate OR try Apple LossLess)
Don't you mean?

WMA='Lousy'
AAC= 'Good'