Trouble with Audiobooks and music on the same Ipod



New member
Dec 6, 2010
Hello all,

I'm a long time lurker but this is my first post. I use iTunes all the time for purchasing TV shows and music and my entire family has ipods/iphones so I am not a complete newb with these things.

That being said, trying to get audiobooks to work the way I'd like them to is about to drive me completely crazy.

Basically, my mother is not very tech savvy, and she would like to have The Bible and some other audiobooks on her ipod along with some music. This seems simple, but here are the conditions I would like to set somehow:

1. Songs Shuffle
2. Audiobooks Play in order
3. Be able to pause partway through an audiobook play some songs and then resume that audiobook
4. Organize audiobooks into "Bible" and "Other"

I have set up all of the audiobooks to [Audiobook, Remember Position, Skip when Shuffling] as per the guides here on this forum but still have some issues.

1. When shuffle is on for the music, the audio books will show "1 of 1" and will not automatically go to the next chapter.

2. If you select an audiobook from a playlist, then play some music, then return to that playlist, it will NOT automatically scroll to the last chapter you were listening to(your position within that file will be remembered, but you have to scroll to the chapter you were listening to). If you go to the Audiobooks menu(instead of a playlist), then it will scroll to the last chapter you were listening to, but then it will play ALL of your audiobook chapters in alphabetical order not just the ones you want it to. This is a problem unless I want to manually rename all of the files :(

I would like to make this as simple as possible for her, but I just can't seem to figure it out. I am beginning to suspect it is impossible, but I hope that someone here can help me?

EDIT: I just tried doing this with a different Ipod and this 2nd ipod will allow for shuffling of songs while audiobooks play properly. They are both Model A1238, but iPod1 is 60GB(Gen 5 I guess) and Ipod2 is 160GB(Gen 6). iPod 1 shows an up to date firmware version of 1.1.2 and iPod2 shows an up to date firmware version of 2.0.4.

The two firmwares/generations act differently in this respect... Anyway to get the 60GB up to 2.0.4? That would take care of Problem #1.

Last edited:


New member
Sep 5, 2006
1. I think you've answered your own question: Don't turn on shuffle when using audiobooks. Use Shuffle Songs from the main menu instead.

2. Set up a smart playlist that selections tracks (e.g. Bible) that have never been played (or have not been played in some period of time). That playlist then will always start with the next track that you want to listen to.


Staff member
Apr 26, 2006
iTunes automatically looks for firmware updates every week that you connect the iPod. If iTunes has not prompted you to install an update, then there is not an update available for that model.

Did you set the audiobooks as Media Kind of Audiobook? That will make them move from the Music section to the Audiobook section. I think you did this or the manual rename of .m4a to .m4b.

Did you set up the audiobooks as playlists? It seems so.
If so you may need to check where you sync'd the playlists. I found that if I used the Music section to sync audiobook playlists they didn't work properly. But if I use the Book section to sync audiobook playlists they work just fine.

Maybe the playlist needs to be smarter:

1. Modify each audiobook file to have Remember Playback Position and Skip On Shuffle.
2. Create a smart playlist that has the Name is <name of audiobook>, Media Kind is Audiobook and Plays is 0.
3. Sync the playlist to the iPod.

When you want to listen find the Audiobook playlist (in the playlists section) and play. It will remember which disk you were on and where in that disc you were, assuming you have each file with the proper track and disc numbers set up. The remember playback position will take you to the place you last paused at within the file.

When the book is complete, and you want it back into the playlist you can have another Smart Playlist in iTunes for Books Listened To with options Media Kind = AudioBook and Plays is greater than 0. Find the book you want to reset, select all the tracks for that book, right click and choose Reset Plays.