Crit Harmon

Producer etc

ITunes®-File Converter and Database

The ITUNES® program from Apple is a fantastic professional tool for cataloging your music library and converting audio files to different formats. In this article we'll discuss ITUNES being a lot more than just an app that stores your favorite songs.

AS A DATABASE I catalogue and store all my song files in ITUNES, whether they're songs from my CD collection or masters of my clients songs. By selecting different view options from the file menu I have access to lots of useful information. I always want to see artist, album, date added and bit rate in my ITUNES columns. (View_Options)

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For Example: ITUNES organizes music into folders by artist, then by album. Be sure to locate this folder and create a shortcut to it so you can access and backup your song files quickly. If you're MAC user, the default folder is found under Users_Music_ITUNES Media_Music

AS A FILE CONVERTER ITunes allows you to convert your files into different formats.(Audio File Formats Explained) IMPORTANT: When importing your music into ITUNES, ITUNES automatically converts your music based on the import settings that you specify. You can specify these settings in the preferences of ITUNES, and, generally ITUNES will ask before importing what file format you would like to import. If you drag and drop your music into ITUNES, ITUNES will maintain the original file type. So, let's say you have a commercially prepared CD of your own music and are asked for an MP3 version of a particular song. First, you need to import that CD into ITUNES. If you have registered the CD with Gracenote, the titles and information for the tracks should automatically appear when you insert your disc into the drive. If not, or if the CD is a one-off, you'll have to label your music once it's imported. Be sure to import the music in the .aif format so that the files are equal to the quality of the files on the CD. Now you can highlight a song and convert it to an .mp3(or several other formats) of any bit rate with ease.(file_create new version) And, with a little practice, you should be able to find the .mp3 versions quickly on your hard drive and send them on they're way. BTW, in the latest versions of ITUNES you can drag and drop right from the ITUNES screen into an email.(As I mentioned above, be sure to set your View Options in ITUNES to include the bit rate column so you can see file type).

LAST BUT NOT LEAST ITUNES also lets you store information and even artwork with your files. Highlight any song and choose Get Info from the file menu and see what you find there. Information you include in these fields (for the .mp3 format only) will even travel with the song when you export it. It's cool to be able to include your own custom artwork or CD artwork and/or put your contact info in there before you blast your song into cyberspace. Here's an example of the information I include before I send a song out to publishers or music supervisors:

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Summary Get to know your ITUNES program. As a database it's a fantastic way to keep all your music organized. As a conversion tool, it's an easy way to convert and tag your files for digital distribution.

Related Articles Audio File Formats Explained

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