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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Do playlists work if the AMI is connected to external HD?

I'm planning on hooking up an external WD Passport Hard Drive to my car via the mini-USB AMI Cable.

Wondering what playlist file types the system understands (.m3u? .wpl?)

Was planning on putting all my music in one folder and having a separate playlist folder as well.

Was also thinking of making a separate playlist for each artist, so I can shuffle all songs from a particular artist also.

How are you guys with external drives arranging your music and playlists?
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Nobody knows what playlist file types the AMI can read, and display?

Do playlists work if you're hooked up to an external hard drive instead of an iPod/iPhone?
 

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Nobody knows what playlist file types the AMI can read, and display?

Do playlists work if you're hooked up to an external hard drive instead of an iPod/iPhone?
From what I've understood and read, playlist are only supported on the iPod via AMI. But I'm not sure, maybe someone else could shed some light. Would be good to know :)
 

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Nobody knows what playlist file types the AMI can read, and display?

Do playlists work if you're hooked up to an external hard drive instead of an iPod/iPhone?
Playlists need to be stored at the "top"/"root" of the file storage tree and take the form "MyPlayList.m3u" as a text file.

An example of the contents of the file is as follows:

#EXTM3U
#EXTINF:246,My Track Name
\MyPath\MyFolder\MyTrack.mp3
#EXTINF:321,Another Track
\MyOtherPath\MyFavArtist\Song.mp3
etc, etc,

I build the files manually on a Mac without any issues. The contents are specifically as follows:

The phrase "#EXTM3U" is the first line.

The next two lines are for each track in the playlist, and you can have as many as you need in the playlist. I have upto 60 in one of them so the limit is quite high.

You start the line with "#EXTINF:" and then add the track length in seconds, followed by a comma, and then the name of the track as you would like it to appear in the list.

The second of the two lines per track is the path to the file as you have stored it in your folder hierarchy.

It is quite easy to extract this data from iTunes by saving the playlist as a text file, and then manually tweaking it. The textfile already has the trackname, duration in seconds, path, etc, you just need to copy/paste it around a bit into an "m3u" format.

Just remember to save the text in Windoze text format, not native MacOS or Unix text format. Of course, if you use Windoze, your text editor will already save it in Windoze format.

Hope it helps!
 

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Playlists need to be stored at the "top"/"root" of the file storage tree and take the form "MyPlayList.m3u" as a text file.

An example of the contents of the file is as follows:

#EXTM3U
#EXTINF:246,My Track Name
\MyPath\MyFolder\MyTrack.mp3
#EXTINF:321,Another Track
\MyOtherPath\MyFavArtist\Song.mp3
etc, etc,

I build the files manually on a Mac without any issues. The contents are specifically as follows:

The phrase "#EXTM3U" is the first line.

The next two lines are for each track in the playlist, and you can have as many as you need in the playlist. I have upto 60 in one of them so the limit is quite high.

You start the line with "#EXTINF:" and then add the track length in seconds, followed by a comma, and then the name of the track as you would like it to appear in the list.

The second of the two lines per track is the path to the file as you have stored it in your folder hierarchy.

It is quite easy to extract this data from iTunes by saving the playlist as a text file, and then manually tweaking it. The textfile already has the trackname, duration in seconds, path, etc, you just need to copy/paste it around a bit into an "m3u" format.

Just remember to save the text in Windoze text format, not native MacOS or Unix text format. Of course, if you use Windoze, your text editor will already save it in Windoze format.

Hope it helps!
can anyone translate this to english?:D
 

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can anyone translate this to english?:D

Ehhh... it can't get any easier than that, mate? Open notepad in Windows, input the text as displayed in BD977s post and save it as "CountryMusic.m3u" on your USB harddrive (save in on the root, not in a folder).

That file and what you are writing refers to the songs in your playlist and where they're all located on your USB drive. See?

Regarding the length of a song in seconds, one can write a shorter period. But then your song will suddenly be interuptet and skipped to the next song.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks a lot for the detailed response Deepmeister :)

Now I've got some tweaking to do....
 

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I'm having a heck of a time making this work. I can play music but I also have podcasts on the same SD card, and I'd really prefer to not hit >> every time the podcasts start and I want to be listening to music.

I have a top level m3u file created as follows:
Exported from iTunes (Mac)
Changed file paths to be relative to SD card root
Changed direction of all slash marks from / to \
That's it. I left the dos-style ^M new lines in there.

the card filesystem is laid out like this:

top level
- MyTopRated.m3u
- Music
-- Classical_Instrumental
-- Compilations
-- Music
--- folders 0-9 and A-Z
---- Artist Name starting with letter of parent folder)
----- sometimes album names, sometimes actual songs
- podcasts
- tools

The first few lines read:

#EXTM3U
#EXTINF:230,Take On Me - a-Ha
\Music\Music\A\A-ha\Take On Me.mp3
#EXTINF:254,Super Trouper - ABBA
\Music\Music\A\Abba\Gold - Greatest Hits\06 - Super Trouper.mp3
#EXTINF:201,S.O.S. - ABBA
\Music\Music\A\Abba\Gold - Greatest Hits\10 - S.O.S..mp3
#EXTINF:326,Chiquitita - ABBA
\Music\Music\A\Abba\Gold - Greatest Hits\11 - Chiquitita.mp3
#EXTINF:163,Waterloo - ABBA
\Music\Music\A\Abba\Gold - Greatest Hits\19 - Waterloo.mp3


I notice if I go to the very top level in the car there's Playlists (grayed out) and Music. Do I need 3 levels of Music in the m3u? Is there something else I'm doing wrong? And yes, now you know the crappy music I listen to :D
 

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The file layout looks right, and the folder hierarchy does not seem to display any obvious problem.

I suspect the playlist ".m3u" file is not recognised by the car as a playlist, hence no playlists seen, thus the menu item for playlists is greyed-out.

The most likely explanation is that the file does not use DOS line endings, but in fact still has Mac or Unix line endings? I can see you have addressed the issue but perhaps something went wrong?

If you have TextWrangler (freeware), you can open your text file and the bottom of the page shows some info, one of which is the present line ending format that was discovered for that file. You can change the pop to be the preferred one (DOS), and then save the file. TextWrangler is the "free" little brother to the commercial product BBEDit available from www.barebones.com in case it helps.
 

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Well, no good. I got TextWrangler, saved it in a variety of encodings under CRLF, to no end. What encoding do you use?

Maybe I should troubleshoot with a small, controlled, playlist before trying the monster.
 

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Alright, now it works. I deleted all the playlists I had at the top level (various kinds to see what might work) exported a clean M3U, edited in textwrangler for / to \, path replacement, and made sure I saved as CRLF ... no change to encoding (was UTF-8, no BOM). Works! Woohoo!

(Thanks!)
 

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Well now that everyone but me has stopped paying attention to this thread... figured I'd close it out (again).

I don't think it was deleting the playlists that fixed it. I think it was patience. I went back in the other day after making modifications to the songs/playlist only to find the Playlists folder grey again. I kept checking it every 5 minutes on my way to work... after about 20-25 minutes it was no longer grey. Apparently I need to wait a long time for it to verify & load the playlist. It now stays orange provided I leave the SD card in.
 

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Well now that everyone but me has stopped paying attention to this thread... figured I'd close it out (again).
Not quite, still read by some! You mention that you use SD cards, whereas I use a 32GB USB stick on the USB cable adapter to the AMI in the glove compartment with MMI 2G. Should not make a difference, but it takes only a few seconds to recognise the stick when removed and reconnected although engine is off at the time to ensure no power is on the USB interface. I suspect it did not like hot-swapping hence waiting for power to switch off before swapping, which is no major hardship as it rarely gets removed. When engine is on again, the stick takes a few seconds to get loaded (screen shows "Waiting...") but then fully operational. This is with about a dozen playlists, with lengths ranging from 5 tracks to 60 tracks each, on a stick with about 2000 tracks total. All tracks are MP3 format, with ID tags set to v2.2 via iTunes and no album art.

If you are willing to experiment, try a few tracks on a SD card, with a simple Playlist, and see if the speed improves? Then amend the ID tags to v2.2 and no album art, to see if this makes it faster?

On new versions of iTunes, you can set the ID3 tag by clicking on the track in the Music Library listing, Ctrl-Click (right click) the track, and select the item called ID3 Tags where you can remove the existing tags completely (may have to select None a few times to remove all of them as many versions can co-exist on a track depending on how it was encoded) and then select v2.2 finally to set it. You should not lose any data as it then sets it from the info in the iTunes Library held on your Mac, but make a backup first!!!! Usual disclaimers/caveats shall apply!!!

This may make it faster, but you may need to experiment?
 

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Heh, now that it's *working* I'm not sure I'll be goofing around with it anymore. Note that the music plays quite readily... it's just if I take out the card and put it back in it'll be quite a while before I regain access to the playlist.

I don't see why album art would make a difference though? I mean... there's nothing but mp3 files and one single playlist (with 1400+ songs) on the SD card. Oh right and the < 300 podcasts. And a shell script.

As for ID2.2 vs IDv3... pretty sure all my mp3s are IDv3. I guess that could make a difference with playing the songs, but not sure about the playlist processing. I guess I don't really know what the MMI is doing with parsing the playlist. I have no such issues with the playlists on my iPhone when I plug it into the AMI.
 

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The main reason was to check if the card took longer to read because the MMI was scanning it each time, and was taking longer because of more (unused) data that needed to be read and was either confusing the MMI or causing it to spend time trying to identify unknown data, such as odd ID tags or superfluous data such as album art. Earlier versions of ID tags such as 2.2 did not have as many options, and therefore did not encode them. The less data encoded, the less likely to have unrecognisable data. Eliminating the unrecognised data could be one possible solution if that was found to be the cause of the delay. Some systems ignore unrecognised data, some will spend time (hence the delay) in trying to evaluate/identify it.

Either way, glad you got it working!
 

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I'm new to creating playlist and first time creating playlist for the AMI on my 2009 S5 with 2G MMI.

I have a bunch of music (24,000 songs) store on a USB hard drive that I connect to my car. Everything is laid out in a folder structure like this:

0-9
A
B
C
D
etc.

Can I connect that hard drive that I use in my car and load it in a "NEW" library in iTunes, create a playlist and then EXPORT it to the USB hard drive that I use in the car?

Am I missing something here? All of the beginning information from earlier in this post is completely beyond me. I need some easy way of creating playlists.
 

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No, that won't work because iTunes doesn't export playlists in a relative way. They always include drive letters (Windows) or the path of your home folder (Mac). But anyway, I doubt the MMI is capable of handling a playlist this large or are you planning to use multiple playlists?
I use MMItunes for playlists and it works great but then I only have a few hundred tracks on my external drive.
 

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No, that won't work because iTunes doesn't export playlists in a relative way. They always include drive letters (Windows) or the path of your home folder (Mac). But anyway, I doubt the MMI is capable of handling a playlist this large or are you planning to use multiple playlists? <br>
I use MMItunes for playlists and it works great but then I only have a few hundred tracks on my external drive.
I am wanting to make quite a few playlist for when I drive long road trips.

I tried MMItunes but wasn't quite sure how it worked as there was no clear instructions.
 
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