Skip navigation

Shallow shuffle on iPod Classic

408 Views 7 Replies Latest reply: Jan 26, 2013 10:07 AM by the fiend RSS
micarta Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
Jan 24, 2013 3:36 PM

Although my iPod has over 10,000 songs it only "shuffles" through the same 200 or so.  It is set to shuffle on main menu and in Settings.

  • the fiend Level 5 Level 5 (6,890 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 25, 2013 7:34 AM (in response to micarta)

    Have a look at my response to this post (referring to Smart Playlists) and see if it may suit you too.

  • the fiend Level 5 Level 5 (6,890 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 25, 2013 11:26 AM (in response to micarta)

    micarta wrote:


    Well, I was hoping not to have to go through the process of creating playlists.

    One Playlist. It's one Playlist.



    micarta wrote:

    I had hoped to find a way to simply sample the entire library at random.  Guess that ain't gonna happen.

    Well, it won't if you're not prepared to try it.


    My suggestion in that thread; creating one Smart Playlist is not difficult and can hardly be described as "going through the process" as though it's hard work. You set the rules, more or less as I stated in that post, and iTunes will put the songs into the Playlist for you. You spend three minutes (if that) setting it up. All you then need to do, to ensure the list is updating on the iPod, is to Sync the iPod with your iTunes Library every now and again.


    • Set it up as Playlist is Music. That will put every song in your Library into the Playlist. (aka "sample the entire Library")
    • Create a second rule, that states Last played is not in the last 18 months. That will exclude a song once it has been played, and not put it back in to that Playlist for 18 months.
    • Name the Playlist
    • Use it


    Considering how many songs you have in your Library, 18 months may not be long enough.


    And if you do want to hear a song that has been played in the last 18 months, it is still on your iPod, exactly where it was before. All you do is navigate to it and play it. But - on those occasions when you want to hear only songs you haven't heard in a long while, use that playlist.


    It will do exactly what you want!


    If you are having difficulty setting up a Smart Playlist, I can give you step-by-step instructions.

  • the fiend Level 5 Level 5 (6,890 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 26, 2013 5:51 AM (in response to micarta)

    micarta wrote:


    1)  While there are over 10,000 songs in the library, only 8000 appear in the playlist.  Not quite sure why.

    Because the other 2,000 have been played within the last 18 months. That's the whole point of the Playlist and precisely what I've been saying all along!


    It's because they have been played "recently", so they are removed from the list. If you play from that Playlist, it cannot shuffle through the same small selection of songs, because they are no longer in the list. Consequently, when using that Smart Playlist, you will not hear any song repeated for 18 months (except if you have a second copy of the song in your Library). Regular Syncing of your iPod with the Library will ensure that errors do not appear in this list.


    Now, there are two caveats. But considering the size of your Library, I don't think either of them are showstoppers.

    1. This Playlist will include any un-ticked songs in your Library, which will not be on your iPod if you have Sync only ticked songs and videos selected (which is the default I believe). They can be excluded from this playlist, I'll show you how in a minute.
    2. If you play any song from one of the other menus, or Playlists, it will then be removed from this Smart Playlist since it has now "been played in the last 18 months", even though you did not play it in that Smart Playlist. (A minor glitch on some iPod models means that sometimes, songs are not excluded from the Smart Playlist until a Sync with iTunes occurs. I mentioned this is in the other thread.) This is why I suggest regular Syncing; it allows iTunes to housekeep, part of which is to return songs to the Smart Playlist once 18 months has passed.


    micarta wrote:


    2)  Also, all the books (not audio books) which were in iTunes (for the iPad) the show up in the playlist in iTunes, but not on the iPod (I don't think).

    That can happen. Although it should not cause any issues when you are Playing music from this Playlist, if you wish to exclude the books from the list, modify the Playlist.


    To exclude the books, select the Playlist in your iTunes and right-click/Edit Smart Playlist. The Playlist should currently look like this:



    On the second line, click on the + button (as you did previously) to add a new line. Modify the new line as shown in the next screenshot:



    Make sure you tick the Match only ticked items box and that it states Match All the following rules at the top. This revised Playlist will now have less than the 8,000 items it had previously. It will have only songs that are ticked, and therefore set to be added to the iPod, and it will no longer have the books. Whatever that figure is, 7,000 or even less, is the songs you have not played for 18 months.


    Again, a very quick modification, which I deliberately left until now, in order not to scare you off. (No need to thank me .)


    All that's required now is for a Sync between the iPod and iTunes and the job is done. Since you will be Syncing every now and again anyway, this can actually wait for now if you wish, since it's such a minor modification.


    As I said previously, if you want to hear a song that is missing from this Smart Playlist (because it has been played "recently"), simply look for it as you do now, using the Artists, Albums, Genres or Songs menus. (Remember, the purpose of un-ticking is to exclude a song from the iPod completely. Excluding from the Playlist is simply "a quirk" - because they were not on the iPod anyway.)


    Songs not out of the list for long enough - or out for too long? Lengthen or shorten the exclusion period by further minor modification of the Playlist rules.


    By the way, you may think that only 8,000 - and now less than that, is too low. But think about it; 2,000 songs played in 18 months is just four songs per day, or roughly 27 songs per week. So the lower the number remaining in the list, the more music you're listening to - and hopefully enjoying, since it's your choice of music and you're not hearing the same songs too often! Double happiness,


    Hopefully, I've now won you over. The original poster (OP) in the thread I linked to appeared happy with my suggestion and Steve, an experienced contributor to these discussions and who originally advised the OP, was suitably impressed and admitted to learning something new as a result.

  • the fiend Level 5 Level 5 (6,890 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 26, 2013 10:07 AM (in response to micarta)


More Like This

  • Retrieving data ...

Bookmarked By (0)


  • This solved my question - 10 points
  • This helped me - 5 points
This site contains user submitted content, comments and opinions and is for informational purposes only. Apple disclaims any and all liability for the acts, omissions and conduct of any third parties in connection with or related to your use of the site. All postings and use of the content on this site are subject to the Apple Support Communities Terms of Use.