Tuesday, November 28, 2006


One of the nice features of my car is that it's stereo plays MP3 CDs. However, the display is kind of annoying. One of the great things about MP3s is that they have embedded metadata. So notice that the artist (A Tribe Called Quest) is being displayed on left side of the display and that the name of the current song ("Butter") is also being displayed. So what is up with "TITLE 004"? What ID3 tag is being used for this? Why doesn't it say the title of the song ("Butter") there instead? Also, up in the right corner notice FOLDER 04. What should be there?

The CD in question was made using iTunes. Admittedly, iTunes' support for MP3 CDs is not exactly extensive. It burns them just fine, but it doesn't expose the folder concept. The only way to get folders on the MP3 CD is to sort the playlist by the Artist. If you do this, iTunes will create a folder per artist, and the inside that folder, a folder per CD. So in the case above, there was a "A Tribe Called Quest" folder and it contained a folder called "The Low End Theory." The song "Butter" was in this folder. So instead of FOLDER 04, I would have really liked it to say THE LOW END THEORY.

Anyways the TITLE 004 is more annoying. Even if it said the title of the song, it's still weird. There are four fields for displaying data, but only three logical pieces to show (song title, artist, and folder/CD.) I guess you could also show something else like genre or year, but that doesn't seem like what my stereo is trying to do.

So maybe there is better software out there for creating MP3 CDs. I have used Nero, and manually created the folder structure. I got similar results to what I got with iTunes, but obviously spent a lot more time creating the CD. Time to do some research...

No comments: