iTunes for Windows - what a mediocre piece of software

Discussion in 'Music' started by MickeS, Mar 25, 2004.

  1. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    I've used it since it came out, and I've bought a few albums from iTMS, but now I'm getting fed up with this piece of extremely mediocre software, so much so that I won't buy from iTMS again.

    Some annoying things:

    - The program does not conform to Windows standards in menu layouts and such. I use a program called minimize XP which lets me minimize any program to the system tray. Guess which is the ONLY program that it can't minimize?

    - When ripping CDs there is ONE option in naming files: "Create file names with track numbers". That is laughable, since every other decent ripping software lets you customize this in detail.

    - It demands way too much memory for what it's doing. At first this didn't bother me too much, but now it really bugs me that other programs slow down so much when playing songs in iTunes.

    - The layout is... not good. It looks extremely amateurish and is a waste of screen real estate. Why take up a third of the screen with "Genre" listing when I don't give a crap about that? I can't seem to turn that off either, which means that longer titles and artist names are not shown in their entirety unless I make the program window bigger because the fields can't be resized!

    - Burning CDs is very unreliable. I don't know how many coasters I've made using iTunes, trying to burn the songs I bought. I gave up long ago using it to burn anything else, because it was a waste of discs, but unfortunately the iTMS songs can only be burned using iTunes. It doesn't even have to do with settings, I can burn one disc and get an error (which is of course unspecified), then use the exact same settings and the exact same brand and batch of discs and burn again and it works.

    - I couldn't burn at all for a while. I tried and tried, and it would not recognize that I had a CD drive. FInally, I found out that it was because I was running Daemon Tools, a "Virtual CD-ROM" program. None of my other burning programs had a problem with this. It wasn't enough to turn it off, I had to uninstall it in order to use iTunes to burn.

    So, I've decided to just stop using iTunes altogether, which bums me out because I like the simplicity of the iTMS. It's just the iTunes program itself that really sucks. I hope they figure something out, meanwhile I'll have to look at some of the competitors.

    Anyone else had the same disappointing experience with iTunes?
     
  2. charles white

    charles white Second Unit

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    You should be able to change that in the "View Preferences" option.
     
  3. Seth_L

    Seth_L Screenwriter

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    So, because other write bloated software, it's ok for apple to do it?
     
  4. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    No, the only option is to remove the browser window altogether, which leaves the list of the thousands of files in one window, making it very inconvenient.

    By the way, the list of file names gets garbled and unreadable after it's played a few songs, so I need to move the slider in order to read the file information. Not a big deal, but annoying.

    These are still minor issues compared to the problem with burning and the lack of naming options when ripping.

    /Mike
     
  5. Patrick Larkin

    Patrick Larkin Screenwriter

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    On ripping CDs, there is no reason in Apple's mind to monkey with filenames. The way the library is created is completely logical and hierarhical.

    On memory, I use OS X so I'm not sure what the problem is. Maybe I don't notice anything since its Unix and handles memory allocation well.

    On columns, don't you have this in Windows under Edit > View Options??

    [​IMG]

    I can resize the columns too.

    On burning, who knows? Its Windows.
     
  6. David_Stein

    David_Stein Second Unit

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    the library is exactly what i hate about iTunes. this is obviously a personal opinion, but i much prefer to have control over my playlist and would rather have my music collection in a logical and heirarchical manner as far as folders/filenames go on the harddrive, not in some program database.
     
  7. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    That's not the options for the browser window.

    /Mike
     
  8. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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    Well, this is why I only use iTunes for transferring MP3s from hard drive to iPod. I use MusicMatch and Nero for everything else.
     
  9. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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    This does exist in Windows, Patrick. Its one of the first things I did once I started using iTunes with the iPod. Its amazing what one can learn about a new piece of software by clicking through each and every drop down menu.

    And I am not sure I understand the gripe with the library (then again, I have had this for all of 2 weeks).

    Yes, the library is one big-ass list of all your music, but you can choose what data you want to see, and each column is sortable just be clicking (I sort by Artist).

    And when I look on the harddrive, I see it all organized in what looks like a logical format:

    G:iTunesartistalbum

    And if that isn't to your liking, how about setting up playlists?

    From a noob perspective, it works just fine, although it is a resource hog, and I do have some issue with ripping speed, but it appears thats a PC/Drive issue.

    Perhaps as I get to using it, I will find stuff to dislike, but thus far, its pretty cool.

    BGL
     
  10. Craig S

    Craig S Producer
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    And that's exactly the problem, not only with iTunes, but with any Mac-centric app which is ported to Windows. I use Windows, I am used to Windows interface conventions, I want my apps to follow them. If I wanted a Mac interface, I'd go buy a Mac.
     
  11. Michael St. Clair

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    Part of good software development is following the user interface standards of the targeted platform so that your application is intuitive to users of that platform.

    If you don't, you are a bad developer.

    This is the case regardless of platform, it isn't just a MAC->PC thing.
     
  12. Dave Johnson

    Dave Johnson Stunt Coordinator

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    what windows interface conventions does itunes for windows not follow?
     
  13. Patrick Larkin

    Patrick Larkin Screenwriter

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    Of course it is....
     
  14. charles white

    charles white Second Unit

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    It's a memory hog but so is Windows Media Player. I use iTunes solely for my iPod. If I want to play those mp4 files, I use Winamp which can still fit on a 1.44 meg floppy. The CD burner in iTunes leaves very much to be desired but I don't know of any other CD burnig software that will accept those DRM infected ACC mp4 files.
     
  15. David_Stein

    David_Stein Second Unit

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    i use foobar2000 for playing mp3s, ephpod for adding mp3s to my ipod, nero for burning cds, and audiograbber for ripping them.

    i have found that in almost every case a collection of programs where each program does one thing well is better than one program that tries to do it all. thats the way i like it, and until there are programs that prove otherwise to me (and iTunes certainly isnt up to the task) thats how i will continue to use my computer.

    personally i like my folders and file systems to look like this:
    c:/mp3/artistname - [releasedate] - albumname

    this way, once i am inside the main folder i can see all the albums i have and can more easily access an album.

    i want the file system to be logical because i want to be able to use it in any program. it doenst matter if i am using itunes or winamp or foobar or musicmatch because the files are arranged in a logical way (to me) on a much more fundamental level than some database that a single program has. i can now share my files with friends, try new programs, use third party programs to analyze my collection, etc etc.

    if all you want to use is iTunes, then you are not going to notice the difference between the two filing systems, but if you use anything else other than iTunes you will appreciate a good logical file system.

    furthermore, i would hate to see how badly itunes would choke on my twenty thousand file mp3 collection.
     
  16. Ben Cloud

    Ben Cloud Extra

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    In the Macintosh version there is an option to "Keep iTunes Music folder organized" under Preferences: Advanced. Turning this off lets you organize the files any way you see fit.
     
  17. Patrick Larkin

    Patrick Larkin Screenwriter

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    [​IMG] Mac users have been dealing with windows ports for years and you will often hear Mac users complain about developers not adhering to Apple interface guidelines... After a while, the develoer changes or something else comes along thats better.

    But anyway, iTunes is far from mediocre. Embrace it. Or not.
     
  18. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    I didn't think the DRM ACC files could be played in anything other than iTunes. If so, that's great, because I like iTMS. Of course, since the burning is a hassle (I have resigned to burning to CD-RW in order to avoid coasters, then ripping the CD-RW to MP3, then burning that to CD-R in Nero) I'll probably lay low on purchasing for the time being anyway.
     
  19. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    I saw that one, but I didn't see a way to organize it differently. Wouldn't the files I rip/buy all of a sudden just be song names in one folder? That's not really an improvement.
     
  20. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    What does it do better than other players? Except for the iPod functionality and the iTMS, that is.
     

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