Track information not appearing when importing into iTunes
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: Thanks for your site, it’s highly informative. I loved your tutorial on moving an iTunes library to an external drive. Following up on that, my question is how do you add music ripped by another person’s iTunes collection into your own? My friend and I rip only our own CDs in WAV format. The only option I see is Add To Library under the File menu, but this way only the track names come across—all other info is missing, which is odd considering all CDs have been ripped using iTunes itself.
A: The problem here is actually that you are storing your tracks in WAV format, which does not provide any fields for metadata such as album, artist or even the track name. When you import the WAV files into iTunes, you’re getting the track name simply because that’s the name of the file; there’s no other information inside of a WAV file that iTunes can read in to populate its library.
Although there are workarounds using Applescript or via exporting and importing XML files, your best option is to convert the tracks to another format that actually provides the ability to store metadata tags in the files. In addition to allowing you to more easily import those files into other libraries, this provides a useful backup against loss of or corruption in your iTunes database, since this allows the track information to effectively be backed up in each file.
Almost every other format supported by iTunes can do this, including the AIFF format, which is otherwise identical to WAV, or the Apple Lossless format which provides the exact same quality at an average of 50% of the file size. Apple Lossless the most efficient storage method if you’re concerned about preserving the original quality, but comes at the expense of compatibility with non-Apple hardware and software. AIFF, on the other hand, is identical to WAV except for its ability to support tags.
Since WAV files are lossless to begin with, converting them to AIFF or Apple Lossless will not reduce the quality in any way. You can convert these tracks directly in iTunes simply by setting your default Import format under the General tab in Preferences and then using the “Convert to…” option found on the Advanced menu. The conversion process will write the information from the iTunes database into the new track’s embedded tags which should in turn allow you to import those tracks into another iTunes library with all of that information intact.
Keep in mind, however, that some information such as rating, play count, and last played time is stored only in iTunes, and will not transfer between libraries as a result.
- 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 releases fourth developer betas for iOS 9.3.2, tvOS 9.2.1
- Bowers & Wilkins acquired by EVA Automation
- India rejects Apple’s plan to sell used iPhones
- Rumor: Purported iPhone 7 component photo shows headphone jack intact
- Families fight in court over missing teen’s iPhone data
- Court allows police to force woman to unlock iPhone with Touch ID fingerprint
- Coach reportedly releasing bands for Apple Watch
- Invoxia adds Amazon Alexa to Triby
- Apple provides more details on new Apple Music API
- Apple Music for Android adds music videos, Family Plan support
- 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
- Schlage Sense Smart Deadbolt with HomeKit support
- ClamCase ClamCase Pro for iPad mini 4
- Brydge BrydgeMini II Keyboard for iPad mini 4
- 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)