iTunes and Media Monkey/SAM Are Contradicting Each Other
December 27, 2012 7:37 AM   Subscribe

iTunes Filter. 1. Why would the information for a song (e.g. artist name, song name) be displayed properly in iTunes but in Media Monkey/SAM the artist name is missing and the song name is listed with a number in front of it? 2. Also in Media Monkey/SAM, there are many duplicates of songs that aren't duplicated in iTunes (and these will have the artist name and the song name listed properly). Please note that this is not the case with all my songs (over 21,000), but enough of them (maybe 2,000--3,000) that it does pose a problem when I'm DJing or organising my music. Plus, y'know, I have a tidy mind and this is bugging me.
posted by Amy NM to Technology (3 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
There is enough ambiguity in the specification for how to store and retrieve metadata from music files that the two programs are interpreting the same data in different ways. On top of that, there dozens of possible fields that could be filled out and the programs could be showing you some of the fields' data and not others. Lastly, some programs might do a good job of altering what they show you (for example it might knowing strip track numbers from titles when showing you a song title).

Short of finding a comprehensive list of these tricks that your versions of Media Monkey and iTunes perform is to go in and alter your metadata so that is shows up properly in both programs. It can be helpful to take in a sample track, fill in each of the fields and see how it shows up in both programs. Also you could take a copy of one of your suspect files and start altering the fields one by one while inspecting them in the other program. That can give you hints of what is going on. Lastly, using a third (or fourth) program that lets you view music metadata might give you other hints.

Good luck with this and I feel your pain. There is a similar problem in the space of image file metadata where not all programs understand the metadata created by other programs and the cameras themselves.

(oh and you probably could post a link to one of the files that shows up differently in each program and someone smarter than I might be able to tell you why the programs are interpreting it differently).
posted by mmascolino at 8:22 AM on December 27, 2012

MP3tag is a very powerful tag editor, and it may be able to figure out the inconsistencies in your tagging and retag your entire library so that it is legible to any MP3 player. It can also rename the files based on their tags, so that you can reliably generate the tag data again, should you need to move your files to some other organizational software.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:37 AM on December 27, 2012 [2 favorites]

iTunes definitely seems to strip numbers at the beginning of file names from the name it displays, based on a quick look at the songs on this computer.
posted by thelonius at 8:40 AM on December 27, 2012

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