Playing iPod through TV USB port
Ask iLounge offers readers the opportunity to get answers to their iPod-, iPhone-, iPad-, iTunes-, or Apple TV-related questions from a member of the iLounge editorial team. We'll answer several questions here each week, and of course, you can always get help with more immediate concerns from the iLounge Discussion Forums. Submit your questions for consideration using our Ask iLounge Submit Form. We reserve the right to edit questions for grammar, spelling, and length.
Q: I am trying to play my iPod through our TV using cables purchased from Apple. When we try to play music or movies, we get a list of “F” folders on the TV and the iPod itself says “Do not disconnect.” How can I view the actual movies or music on the TV? We didn’t seem to have this trouble on an older TV that we used. The folders do not show up as “F” folders on the computer or the iPod, only when it is hooked up to the TV. The help desk for the TV was less than helpful and didn’t have an answer. We have a Samsung 540 40” LCD TV. Is this a problem with the TV? Is there a different TV brand that is more compatible with iPods?
A: The problem in this case appears to be that your TV model is either not specifically iPod compatible or perhaps is not set to an iPod-compatible mode.
When iTunes stores files on your iPod, it copies them to a hidden file and folder structure and then writes the information about the files to a database that the iPod reads to display your music in a more organized fashion. This allows you to quickly browse through your music in a multitude of different ways, such as by artist, album, genre, etc, rather than being limited by navigating to it through a linear file and folder structure. Any device that is specifically made to work with an iPod should know how to read this iPod database to properly display an index of your music.
Unfortunately, however, many devices that provide a USB port for music players are simply designed to work with a file system based device such as a USB flash drive or similar device that you would have copied the music files to manually using a tool such as Windows Explorer. What is happening here is that when you connect your iPod to your TV, it is simply displaying the iPod file system as if it were a hard drive, rather than seeing the index of music that is actually on your iPod.
You should investigate further to see if your particular model of TV has an iPod compatible setting or if there might be a firmware update available that provides this capability. If not, then you may find using your iPod directly with your TV to be somewhat impractical, since the folder structure on the iPod is somewhat random and not representative of any useful organization.
In this case, you could either purchase a different TV that is specifically iPod-compatible, connect your iPod to your TV through the audio input ports rather than through the USB port and control it manually, or look into an iPod Dock that provides video output and on-TV menus. You can find reviews of some of the available docks with on-TV menu support in our reviews section.
- Will removing a credit card from Safari also remove it from Apple Pay?
- Can I mute Handoff calls coming into my Mac from my iPhone?
- How do I keep my iPhone calls from ringing on my Mac?
- Why doesn’t Traffic show up on my Today Notifications Screen?
- Why doesn’t my iPhone reconnect to Wi-Fi after I turn it on?
- Why can’t I see the iPad-style landscape view on my iPhone 6 Plus?
- Apple’s new ‘Echo rival’ may feature a camera
- Apple ‘working rapidly’ to extend Apple Pay to more countries
- Report: Apple’s Siri-based Amazon Echo competitor will be a new Apple TV
- Report: Apple SVP Eddy Cue proposed bid to buy Time Warner
- Beta testing for Pokémon GO begins in the U.S.
- Apple’s plan to open stores in India hits a snag (Update: India’s finance minister ratifies ruling)
- Apple looking into charging stations for electric cars
- Apple hires hint at improvements in encryption, health monitoring
- Hyundai adds CarPlay support to more vehicles
- Plaintiffs file new motion to keep ‘Error 53’ Touch ID lawsuit alive
- OtterBox Symmetry Series Hybrid Case for 12.9” iPad Pro
- Logitech Logi BASE Charging Stand for iPad Pro
- Twelve South TimePorter for Apple Watch
- August Doorbell Cam
- August Smart Lock HomeKit enabled + Smart Keypad
- ecobee3 HomeKit-enabled smart Wi-Fi thermostat
- Zagg Now Cam
- Yantouch EyE Portable Wireless Speaker
- Netatmo Wind Gauge
- Incipio Stashback for iPhone 6/6s
- Filling the Gap: A look at third-party HomeKit apps
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of tvOS 9.2
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 9.3
- Opinion: Why Apple needs a dedicated HomeKit app
- Inside the betas: What’s new in iOS 9.3 and tvOS 9.2 (Updated)
- Life with HomeKit: Our experiences with Apple’s home automation system
- Under the Radar: 10 ‘hidden’ details about the new Apple TV
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 9.0
- Under the Radar: A closer look at smaller iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus changes
- A First Look at iOS 9’s Transit in Apple Maps (Updated for watchOS 2)