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Topic: What software to load songs onto iPod touch?

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Old 04-18-2008, 05:00 PM
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What software to load songs onto iPod touch?

I know of a few apps you can use to copy songs FROM an ipod touch, but I want to load songs TO my ipod touch. I don't want to have itunes or quicktime installed AT ALL. Is there anything out there that can do this? I don't mind paying.
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Old 04-18-2008, 05:30 PM
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Why don't you want iTunes installed on your PC?
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Old 04-18-2008, 05:45 PM
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If you're willing to wait, I believe the new version of MediaMonkey (still in testing / beta stage) will support the touch, but only for music. You'll still need iTunes for video and photos.

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Old 04-18-2008, 06:26 PM
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You should use iTunes given that 3rd party programs will be limited to audio syncing only. Videos will need to be synced with iTunes as well as any possible SDK apps and photos. Maybe you could tell us why you don't want iTunes or QuickTime installed. I understand that many people don't like iTunes but it isn't any worse than Windows Media Player, Real Player, or MusicMatch (in fact it is better than those three popular apps). Not only that but iTunes is the only way for you to have full syncing with your iPod touch. You also need iTunes to properly unlock your iPod touch unless MediaMonkey found a way to do this using their software (doubtful).



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Old 04-18-2008, 09:56 PM
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There is no reason not to install iTunes. It will be difficult to manage your iPod touch with some other cheap software. Also, iTunes is much better than windows media player and who cares if you hve quickti e installed? Its not to hurt you if you install it.
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Old 04-20-2008, 11:21 PM
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I'm just not a fan of having bloated, fat software on my machines. I also don't need my media syncing app to have a media player in it. There's also no reason for my media player or ipod syncing app to run background services on my machine and take up more resources, but both itunes and quicktime include these.

I've had no problems at all using Anapod explorer with my ipod classic. In fact, I love it. It's faster and takes up much less resources than itunes. Maybe I'll just code up my own ipod touch manager that uses SSH since nobody seems to offer an itunes replacement, and none of you seem to understand the utility of such software.
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Old 05-05-2008, 10:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waktasz
I'm just not a fan of having bloated, fat software on my machines. I also don't need my media syncing app to have a media player in it. There's also no reason for my media player or ipod syncing app to run background services on my machine and take up more resources, but both itunes and quicktime include these.

I've had no problems at all using Anapod explorer with my ipod classic. In fact, I love it. It's faster and takes up much less resources than itunes. Maybe I'll just code up my own ipod touch manager that uses SSH since nobody seems to offer an itunes replacement, and none of you seem to understand the utility of such software.

Thank you waktasz. Finally someone who understands! I had posted a similar request earlier and all I got was "USE ITUNES!" If I wanted to, I wouldnt have asked. Anyway... checkout the new version of MediaMonkey. It supports the Touch and the basic version is free. It recognised my ipod in an instant and all the songs on it. I dont use it much for videos anyway. Primarily for podcasts and for music.. so far so good.
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Old 05-05-2008, 10:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waktasz
I'm just not a fan of having bloated, fat software on my machines. I also don't need my media syncing app to have a media player in it. There's also no reason for my media player or ipod syncing app to run background services on my machine and take up more resources, but both itunes and quicktime include these.
I love how we've now come to the second generation of high tech luddites (the first being the command line junkies when the mouse and GUI based OS's took over). RAM is now into the multi-gigabyte ranges (my three year old computer has 1.5GB as an example of how not-new this phenomenon is) and processors have two or more dedicated threads sharing millions of CPU cycles per second, yet you're going to celebrate doing more work on your part than is necessary just so there won't be a process that you'll NEVER notice, just brilliant.

There was a point when we needed to trim the fat, and genuinely ignorant computer users will still somehow find enough pointless processes to affect performance by not paying attention to what is being installed and invoked at startup, but iTunes and its *one* background process (EDIT: oops, two unless you have an iPhone), who's only purpose is to watch for a mounted iPod or CD, is NOT among the problems.

But, hey, it's your life and your computer, and if buying a piece of expensive hardware, designed from the ground up to work hand in hand with a fairly brilliant bit of software, and then going out of your way to find another bit of (arguably pretty decent in the case of MM) software that won't work as well is what makes you happy, who am I to stand in your way.

Last edited by Code Monkey; 05-06-2008 at 12:33 AM.
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Old 05-05-2008, 11:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Code Monkey
but iTunes and its *one* background process, who's only purpose is to watch for a mounted iPod or CD
With my iPhone, I count 3 background processes, when iTunes isn't even currently running:

- iTunesHelper.exe
- iPodService.exe
- Apple MobileDeviceService.exe

iTunes also steadfastly refuses to acknowledge that all my MP3's have track ratings in them already, which is why I continue to use MediaMonkey. I just can't face the task of re-rating nearly 10000 tracks.

Having said that, I recognise the fact that iTunes is *the* app, and is designed from the ground up to work with the hardware. MM does a good job, but it's not perfect.

If someone can tell me how to get my ratings recognised, I'll switch in a minute.

bao
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Old 05-06-2008, 12:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baobab68
With my iPhone, I count 3 background processes, when iTunes isn't even currently running:

- iTunesHelper.exe
- iPodService.exe
I do have the iPodService, so oops, 2 background tasks that use an average of 0 CPU cycles per second and less than 1% of my available RAM.

Quote:
If someone can tell me how to get my ratings recognised, I'll switch in a minute.
iTunes for reasons only Apple can explain does not use the id3 tag field for ratings, but instead uses its own database to store a track's rating independent of the file itself. As best I can tell, there is no way to get iTunes to read that field either.

That does not mean all is lost: Pick some field that iTunes does read that you aren't currently using, some common fields that might be empty are composer, comment or BPM. Use Media Monkey to tag all songs with 3 stars in one of these fields with something appropriate, say "3". Repeat for four star songs, five star songs, and so on.

In iTunes, create a smart list to find all tracks with {BPM IS 3} or {Composer CONTAINS 3} or whatever you used, select all and set the rating to 3, repeat for each rating.

It's not 100% automatic, but it shouldn't take more than a half hour to do any sized library (and probably a lot less).
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Old 05-06-2008, 12:17 AM
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Code Monkey - thank you so much for that information. I'll give that a try asap.
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Old 05-06-2008, 02:55 AM
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Sorry buds, its still a matter of taste and whether you like it or not, you can't debate
taste.

Like the OP, I too like Anapod Explorer and prefer an explorer like interface.

Why do you think this site even had that program (Anapod Ex) here for download ?

Anyways .. thanks to the guys that actually answered his question, instead
of calling him foolish for having an opinion.
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Old 05-06-2008, 07:01 AM
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Unfortunately, the problem is that although there was a time when the third-party software options for the traditional iPod models provided the same level of iPod management functionality as iTunes itself did, that gulf is getting wider and wider with every new feature and device added by Apple.

If you really only want to manage your music and other audio content on a traditional iPod, then there are a lot of solutions for this, and they provide reasonable alternatives to iTunes for the audio-only user.

The problem is that Apple has quite deliberately designed the iPod and iTunes to work hand-in-hand, and as new features and devices are added, the third-party manufacturers have had a hard time keeping up.... It started as far back as the iPod photo, when it took almost a year before you could find a third-party app that would actually do something as seemingly simple as putting your album artwork onto the device, not to mention the ability to access the photo transfer functions. Then the 5G iPod introduced video, the 5.5G introduced games, the iPod classic and 2007 iPod nano changed the database on the iPod, and the iPhone and iPod touch completely changed the sync protocols.

During all of this, iTunes was of course updated and ready to handle all of the new devices and new features, while third-party software lagged further and further behind.

So it's not so much that the people responding in this thread are narrow-minded iTunes fanboys.... We just collectively have enough experience to realize that buying a device like an iPod touch and then not using iTunes isn't going to work very well unless you're only looking to utilize a very limited set of features, and that avoiding iTunes because of some uncertain "fear factor" doesn't really make a lot of sense.

Personally, it's difficult for me to understand these ideas sometimes, since I bought an iPod because of iTunes, not in spite of it. If I hadn't liked iTunes, I would have happily stayed with my Creative Nomad Jukebox four years ago (which I was managing with Notmad Explorer, by the way.... ). The iPod models are nice enough devices in their own right, but they're not that different from many other DAPs on the market if you're only going to try to manage them with something else, particularly when that software won't even provide full-featured support of the device.



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Old 05-06-2008, 07:31 AM
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I've just come from a drag n drop device (a venerable iRiver H320), where I could effectively manage my music using MediaMonkey, or even Windows Explorer. I'll admit, I'm finding it hard to put my faith in a program that potentially physically organises my music "for" me.

I'm starting to feel a bit more confident in it (especially with that excellent info from Code Monkey, above), but it is a big change for me. I am an IT guy of some 25 years as well, so maybe I am just a bit of a control freak. :-)

Can someone please reassure me that my chances of having my music "eaten" by iTunes are relatively low? I don't really care what folder structure and file names it uses on my iPhone, as long as everything remains where I left it on the PC.

And in one respect you folks are definitely right - the iPod functionality of my phone is the buggiest part at the moment, and I can't help but wonder if that's because I'm not using iTunes to put my music on...
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Old 05-06-2008, 07:45 AM
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I've also been in IT for about the same amount of time, so you're kind of in the same position I was in four years ago when I discovered iTunes.... However in my case I was looking for a way to have my computer simplify my life (isn't that what they're supposed to do? ), as with my previous solutions I was spending far more time managing my music than I was actually listening to it.

The key point for me is that I wanted my computer to be the central repository of my music and my library, and it frustrated me that every other device I used treated the portable media player and the computer as if they were completely unrelated to each other. iTunes and the iPod solved this with it's rather brilliant synchronization concept -- the iPod becomes an extension of the main library, which was exactly what I was looking for -- managing my music in one place, and have it seamlessly updated everywhere else I wanted to use it.

Anyway, to your specific point.... If you want to leave the music in its original folders on the PC, ensure that you turn OFF the "Copy files to iTunes Music folder when adding to library" option in your iTunes preferences (see Edit->Preferences->Advanced). This will cause iTunes to leave any tracks you import in their original locations, and simply reference them in the iTunes library folder. If your files are already in your iTunes Music Folder path (see the same preferences screen), you'll also want to turn off "Keep iTunes Music folder organized". iTunes will attempt to reorganize (move) any tracks that you import directly from the iTunes folder into it's own naming structure unless this option is turned off.

Basically, iTunes considers it's own "iTunes Music Folder" to be it's "home" folder. Anything in this folder is fair game to reorganize or move (subject to the "Keep iTunes Music folder organized" setting). Anything references from outside of this folder will never be touched by iTunes.

Note that any music you download from the iTunes Store, or podcasts that you subscribe to, or CDs you import yourself through iTunes, will always be organized into iTunes' own file-system structure regardless of these settings (when creating a new file, iTunes has to put it somewhere).

The most important thing if you're not going to let iTunes organize your file/folder structure is that you must not move or rename any files once you've imported them into your iTunes library. iTunes stores the full path to each file that you import, and if you rename or move it, iTunes will lose track of it, resulting in a broken link. For the occasional individual file, you can simply double-click on the entry in iTunes and manually point to the new file location, but as you can imagine this would be tedious for hundreds or thousands of tracks. Make sure that your music is organized the way you want it before you import it into iTunes if you're going to do this.

Note that unless you're using something else to manage/access your media, there's not really any compelling reason to not let iTunes reorganize your files. They're just files after all, and if you're going to access and manage them through iTunes, then you should never need to look at the underlying file system -- in fact you can even copy tracks directly from iTunes to another folder by highlighting them in the iTunes application and dragging-and-dropping them out directly from there, so there really is no need to worry about the underlying file structure unless you still plan to use some other software to also access your files.

Of course, you can also take baby steps.... Start with your files where you want them (with the "Copy files to iTunes Music folder when adding to library" option turned OFF), and if you decide later to bring them all into iTunes' own file and folder structure, you can use the "Consolidate Library" function, found on the "Advanced" menu in iTunes, to copy all of these into your iTunes Music Folder (wherever that may be), organized into sub-folders by ARTIST and ALBUM.

Note as well that as the name implies, if the "Copy files to iTunes Music folder when adding to library" option is enabled, it will merely COPY any imported tracks into your iTunes music folder (assuming that's not where you're importing them from). Your original tracks will be left in their original location for you to do with what you will, but they will not be used by iTunes in any way. This should provide you with some flexibility to experiment and decide how you really want iTunes to handle things. Just make sure that you do NOT set your "iTunes Music Folder" path to your existing music folder.

Check out our Beginners' Guide to Filling your iPod for more information on how all of this fits together. Our iPod 201 article, Managing your iTunes Library on an External Hard Drive also has some useful tips you may want to keep in mind for the future.



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