Spring cleaning


I have been spending a lot of time recently trying to organize my song collection. Its quite an under taking and will probably end up being an endless project. At any rate here is a quick run down of what I am doing and how.

I have been using CoverScout and SongGenie to get all the cover art and song information cleaned up. Overall the two apps disappoint. They are probably perfectly fine for 1k or less tracks, but not for my 10k+ song collection. So this part has been quite painful. I have send them a bazillion feature requests.

Since version 1.1 I have found a semi decent workflow. I am now always starting form SongGenie and order by Album. I then highlight an entire album in SongGenie and click to get the album art on CoverScout. This solves my biggest issues with CoverScout where albums without an album artist would get split up. I also use beaTunes to fix up some typos and minor differences in artist/album names. beaTunes can also help in finding missing album artist information.

I am also looking to add key information using mixed in key. The app seems nice, but I had some crashes when I tried to add everything in bulk. I am now going things in smaller increments. So far no crash .. once I find a track that crashes the app, I will send it to the developers who seem quite eager to get things fixed up. I am not sure if I also want to get Platinum Notes. I have noticed that a lot of my tracks will require me to adjust the volume and this app supposedly can fix this, but it also seems quite scary. Plus the app is expensive and there is no trail version. Furthermore it means the tracks get re-encoded to either a WAV or 320kbit MP3.

I have used Tangerine to get my songs somewhat accurate BPM values into iTunes. This is enough to get the song into the right smart playlist. Traktor of course tries to be a bit more precise (Tangerine only does integers and not decimal values), though sometimes Traktor is also wrong (I guess most electronic music will be at an integer and not a decimal value).

Aside from this my other big project has been to rate all my songs. The best solution I have found for this was to create a smart playlist in iTunes that contains all songs without a rating. I then use this playlist together with the iTunes DJ feature. Along with hot key shortcuts set in CoverSutra I can now listen to unrated songs and quickly rate them while at work. I briefly also synced this playlist with my iPhone 2G. I generally prefer my Nokia N95 because it supports stereo bluetooth (which the iPhone will only get support with the version 3.0 software to come out this summer). I do have a adapter bluetooth, but it does not fit into the stupid iPhone 2G connector and the adapter for the adapter (how pathetic is this Steve?) was to cheap and ripped.

All the while I am doing this I am beginning to realize that I have a lot of tracks that are 128-160kbit MP3's, which is probably not going to sound too well if I actually get to DJ on a system where I can crank up the sound. Most of the rest is at 192kbit, which is probably also a bit low. So I will need to re-rip my (and my friends CDs). I am going to go with 256kbit AAC. I think lossless is a bit overboard for my needs and will just mean that all the other things I want to keep on my laptop will not fit anymore .. requiring me to always carry an external HD.


Hey Lukas,
I'm just cleaning up all my music too. Thanks for some good insights and tools to check out. It's a lot of work! I hope to get to hear you DJ sometime, somewhere soon. Good luck with the new hobby!

2009-05-05 11:09 am

DJ Suicide Dive

Thanks. I hope to DJ at many more Frisbee parties in the future, so there is a good chance that one day I will have the honor to DJ for you :)

2009-05-05 11:34 am

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