Can I play my iPod via iTunes with autosync turned on?
June 2, 2005 3:27 PM   Subscribe

Can I play music through my docked iPod via iTunes with autosync turned on?

I like to play mp3s through my docked iPod, since then I can have music coming out of my stereo and computer beeps coming out of my computer, as God intended. I used to be able to do this using the nice iTunes interface, by clicking the iPod in the left pane to make it the active volume and then playing a track.

However, some version of iTunes for OS X made the iPod library appear grayed out in iTunes with autosync on. Since I also like to have my iPod autosync with the iTunes library on my iMac, I have to reach over to my iPod and fiddle with the scroll wheel to play music.

Can I have my cake (autosync) and eat it too (use iTunes to control my docked iPod?) I'm guessing no, but maybe somebody knows a workaround...
posted by lbergstr to Computers & Internet (3 answers total)
I don't think this'll work, but try checking the option to mount the iPod as a hard disk when connected.

Thing is, if you can use the menu system on the iPod, it's really just getting power from the dock, not control.

Of course, I never knew it was possible to use the computer to control the iPod's audio out. (Did the iPod show "do not disconnect" or the menu?)

If all else fails, you might be able to use something like the Griffin iMic as a second audio-out and route iTunes through that. Or use an Airport Express, which will definitely work.

Also might want to try asking on Apple's Support Discussion boards. ( > Support > Discussions)
posted by trevyn at 6:53 PM on June 2, 2005

What about just going into the iPod preferences and turning off the synching when you want to listen to it at your desk? I don't see how there could be a workaround that would be any easier than clicking one checkbox.

(BTW, I've had iPods since the first gen, and it hasn't ever been possible to play the iPod through iTunes and make the music come out of a different speaker than your computer's beeps do, unless you add a third party utility like Detour to the mix, so I'm not sure how you ever managed that feat in the first place. Maybe I'm misunderstanding your original statement, though.)
posted by bcwinters at 8:22 PM on June 2, 2005

It used to be possible to have iTunes control the iPod while it was in the dock (with autosync on). Audio then came through the dock's line out.

I'll look into whether I can check/uncheck autosync without weird ramifications - if so, I might have a reason to write my first AppleScript.

Thanks both.
posted by lbergstr at 10:15 PM on June 2, 2005

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