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alternatives to itunes


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In an ideal world for me, Winamp would be available for use on my late 2009 Intel iMac.

As with the golf gods, it doesn't look good for me.


I have come to the conclusion that iTunes is not the best it can be, and I'm wondering if anybody can suggest a good alternative. Why? Because despite my (best?) efforts, iTunes will not adjust the volume for all of my AIFF files (Betty Blowtorch and The Briggs are always significantly louder), it has no clue how to properly keep a media folder organized, demands a credit card number to create an iTunes account (something i only want so i can download album images), and refuses to allow me to drag and drop files from my external hard drive onto an unnamed playlist while also not allowing me to right-click and enqueue the song onto my playlist. Yes, Winamp spoiled me.


I don't create playlists, per se, because if not listening to music at random (shuffle), I like to add songs based on what i want to hear at the moment.


So, I guess I don't like iTunes. Any suggestions for other software, or tips on how I can force iTunes to do what I want, and not what Steve Jobs thinks I want?


hungry for knowledge

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Volume level (I assume you are using volume equalising) I can't help you with ...


What issues do you have with iTunes library management - as far as I've experienced iTunes is good at keeping your files organised sensible ... so long as you LET it organise for you ... iTunes Media folder with separate Music, Movie, TVShow, etc folders beneath and in Music folder sorted in Artists/Album format.


It is possible to setup an iTunes account without a credit card (or at least used to be). Not transparent / supported but searching google should get you a promotional iTunes cards number (no value but enables you to set it up). I've even set up a US account this way even though I'm in UK.


As for alternatives - have you checked out Play (from sbooth.org) or SongBird?






...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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Eloise, thanks for your interest.

iTunes puts tracks it's unsure of into folders by artists' names, and then inside of another folder it calls "unknown album," i think it is. When I ripped my cd collection I thought that was odd, and I did have my preferences selected to allow iTunes to keep my media folder organized. I'm just not sure anymore if iTunes and I have the same definition of organized.


When I put a number of MP3s (I've been replacing those with AIFFs as I go along) on the external hard drive, I put them all into an folder called MP3s, but iTunes, when it plays any of the MP3s, moves them into a different folder it creates with the artist's name and into an "unknown album" folder. There are many folders with only one file in them; it seems a waste. The other annoying thing it does is, it all-too-often it puts music files in a "best of" album folder if it doesn't recognize a cd, especially an older one. Also, just tonight, as I was listening to a variety of music, I found that iTunes only ripped have the files on Budgie's best of cd. I hope the Budgie cd is the only one it didn't fully rip because I just finished ripping all of my cds and didn't really check to see if all the songs were ripped.


As far as Songbird, I have not checked it out, though I do recall seeing it was recommended, and I did check it out briefly, but I don't remember why I did not download it. I'll look into it further. Had not heard of Play; will check it out.


Thanks for the tip on setting up an iTunes account. I will definitely look into that. I don't buy music files online. I prefer to buy the cd and rip it, so I cannot see giving a credit card number to iTunes (not that I have a problem buying things online, mind you).


hungry for knowledge

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library managers and why I absolutely hate 'em!


It's always fascinated me that the stand-alone rippers (EAC, Db PowerAmp) are perfectly happy to create, and work with, a folder structure of wav files - top level of folders as 'Artist', next level as 'Album' - that the library managers/media players, to a man, point blankly refuse to work with! I certainly do not know of one which is happy to look at such a set-up and manage to work out what albums I've got!


Well, I hear you say, if you must use a format that doesn't tag properly then you deserve everything you get! But all of these managers/players are happy to play wav files and I don't understand why turning a folder structure into a library is such an impossible programming task that none of them can do it! When I recently pointed a new install of MediaMonkey at my folder structure, it shoved every single file into one folder marked 'Unknown'!! (All 8254 of them!!). There is no facility within the program to tell it to create a library from file and folder names. Incredible!


My view of tagging any kind of file, whether it be audio, photo, video, whatever, is that managers use it to lock you in to their software. Whenever I have gone to the effort of tagging stuff it has never been correctly read by another manager, when I've decided to give something else a try. It's infuriating. I think that if you are happy to surrender yourself to one program then tagging can be a useful tool. But if you decide to move to something else then you have to be prepared to start again. Or, at the very least, accept that there will be a fair amount of 'housekeeping' to do!


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Bob, you are exactly right.


When I first started using iTunes -- only two months ago -- it was supposed to rip my cds using artist, name of album, track number, song title; and it did so for several cds. Now that the computer is ensconced in my home, it does what it wants, and laughs in my face while telling me the vista laptop is just 10 feet away, and i can use that if I'm unhappy.


In reality, I visit CA to research some of the hardware I'm hoping to buy for my computer audio setup and my home stereo set up (both quite modest compared to what I've seen around here).


hungry for knowledge

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Eloise, again thanks.


I downloaded songbird today; after just a couple hours of shuffle play, it seems to be doing a good job. It pulls in the album art, band history and song lyrics (when possible).


Seems fairly easy to use so far. Is it as good sonically as itunes? My system wouldn't know.


Again, thanks, ry


Edit: After another day of using Songbird, i've noticed it has doesn't keep the output volume consistent. It makes it a little awkward to control the volume, especially for an apartment dweller. I have to pay closer attention. Of course, iTunes had a similar problem, just not as bad.


hungry for knowledge

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