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Monday, September 26, 2011

030 - Burning an mp3 music CD from iTunes

First written 22.Aug.2011, updated 24.Aug.11. iTunes 10.4, Mac OS Snow Leopard 10.6.8.

Two entries for some songs, and a repair action

First:  The normal no-fuzz procedure is described at

I burnt an mp3 music CD the other day. Since some of the songs were not in mp3 format, I had to manually convert them to mp3 before I burnt the playlist. And I had to export the playlist to a file and then edit it in a text editor to replace all occurances of .m4a with .mp3. Then I had to import the playlist-file again. Only then did iTunes obey my wish to burn only .mp3 files, and not complain that "81 songs", sorry, could not be burnt.

When I afterwards looked at one of the original CDs in the Music folder, it had two entries for each song: one m4a and one mp3, or one mp3 and another list entry also as mp3! And playing that album, every song was played twice.

I then used Finder to track the music folder and move the mp3 files, that really should not be there, after the mp3 CD had been burnt, into another directory outside iTunes. Then I in iTunes scrolled through the list in the album, and it showed an exclamation mark for every song that was gone. Then I in iTunes picked them all out and moved them to the bin. The figure above shows the an album in the Music folder (left) and the almost same album as seen in the playlist.

mp3 CD in 2011?

Everybody else made mp3 CDs ten years ago. But it's only now that we in fact have two units that play them! The car stereo and the Denon CEOL. The second doesn't need mp3 CDs since it streams. And the car radio also has the aux input that takes music from iPad or iPhone's headphone outputs (see blog 028). But a few mp3 CDs in the car doesn't hurt, and makes it possible to see the song names in the car's display, and control music playing by steering wheel buttons. And since there's no USB memory stick input that would have obsoleted the mp3 CD, we will have to use standard CD, mp3 CD or aux input.

I wanted to extract the mp3 CD from our iTunes music collection.

Some more points

Some mp3 songs also all of a sudden appeared twice in the iTunes list, pointing to the same mp3 song. One lits entry has to go, so delete it, but do answer "yes" to the question whether you want to keep the file. I didn't realize and did kill a song or two. Some day I'll learn when I try to play it. Then it's going to be good with the synched backup I have!

If an album comes up with exclamation marks just by itself, it's only the list entry that's been added. Delete the exclamation mark lines only, since the mp3 file in itself is not repeated. Two files can't have the same name in the same directory.

Don't they want me to make mp3 CDs?

Probably not! Am I not supposed to make mp3 of purchased music? I think it's only ripped CDs that may be stored as mp3 out of the box, provided I had imported them to mp3.

I still haven't finished the clean-up! Some 40 albums take time! I really feel stupid.


Don't convert to mp3 if you want to burn an mp3 CD. Take the onces it has for you. Be sad and tell Apple.

But is there another way?

If there is something really wrong with what I did wrong, please comment! Like, if it's so wrong and it would have been easy to get it right, had I hit the right action trail immediately. Right?

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Øyvind Teig

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