trouble getting gapless playback with 5G iPod

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dancrocker
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trouble getting gapless playback with 5G iPod

Post by dancrocker » Mon Oct 30, 2006 3:48 am

I just bought a new 5G iPod and used Max to rip to apple lossless. The playback is often gapless but not always. Sometimes, there's a gap between tracks (I'm testing with Dark Side of the Moon). It seems like the gap is there while the iPod is seaching for the next track as the display freezes and I can feel the disk accessing madly. The same CD ripped with iTunes works flawlessly. Anyone have any explanation?

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sbooth
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Post by sbooth » Mon Oct 30, 2006 3:56 am

Max uses the Core Audio encoder, which probably doesn't set whatever iTunes uses for gapless information (iTunes has its own encoders, independent of Core Audio). I'm not sure of a way around this issue; we would need to determine what iTunes sets in the files as far as gapless information. I know people have figured it out for MP3 files, but I don't know about Apple Lossless.

dancrocker
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Post by dancrocker » Mon Oct 30, 2006 5:45 am

Thanks for the reply, Stephen.

What I'm trying to do is to set up a system where I first rip to ALAC, archive this, then make an MP3 from the ALAC files. This way, I have a lossless version which I can transcode to whatever format I want. Here's what I have tried so far:

-rip to ALAC; doesn't play gaplessly (describe in my original post)
-rip to MP3; still doesn't play gaplessly although there is less of a gap than the above...actually, I'd call it a glitch as opposed to a gap
-rip to ALAC, convert files to MP3; sounds the same as the direct to MP3 case

What's odd is that the MP3s sound fine when played using iTunes (I didn't try the ALAC files yet). It's just playback with the iPod which is not right.

I'm a little surprised to be having this trouble (esp. with the MP3s). I can't be the first person to use Max to encode MP3s using Max and to expect gapless playback. And, since Max is using LAME, I would have though it would work.

Any ideas?

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sbooth
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Post by sbooth » Mon Oct 30, 2006 6:52 am

dancrocker wrote:I'm a little surprised to be having this trouble (esp. with the MP3s). I can't be the first person to use Max to encode MP3s using Max and to expect gapless playback. And, since Max is using LAME, I would have though it would work.

Any ideas?
The issue here is that LAME writes a Xing header containing the gapless playback information, whereas iTunes uses its own method for recording gapless information. iTunes writes in additional ID3 comments; see this post for information on specifically what iTunes does.

It should be possible to add an ID3 tag like this manually using Max.

dancrocker
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Post by dancrocker » Mon Oct 30, 2006 7:19 am

I was told by someone that iPod can use the gapless related LAME tags even though iTunes may not write them when it encodes MP3s. It looks like this is not the case. Is it well-known that iPod does not use the LAME tags?

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