1 2 Previous Next 24 Replies Latest reply: Oct 13, 2013 8:59 AM by MrHonk
roebeet Level 2 Level 2 (430 points)

This assumes iTunes 10.5.2, as this is the current version as of this writing.  Doing a brain-dump of some of the more common questions that have come up, and the ones I've personally tested.

 

 

1) I'm stuck at StepX / it's taking a long time to complete.

 

This is probably the most common question I've seen here.   There seems to be a few factors as to how long it takes the Matching process to complete:

 

1- Your library size. Self-explanatory - the bigger the library, the longer the process will take.

2- How many uploads you end up having.   This is harder to gauge, but if you end up with a lot of uploads, it will take a lot longer for the process to complete.  If you have a lot of albums that you know do not exist on iTunes, or a lot of old CD's that have since been remastered (see bullet 2) then it's a good guess that the process will take longer.

3- Your ISP's upload speed.  If you have a lot of uploads, the speed to complete will be directly related to your ISP's upload speed.   This is a second number they give you - so, for example, if your ISP's numbers are 15/2, it's 15Mbps down and 2Mbps up.  That's 250KB/sec up, which is at best ~850MB per hour.   So, assuming a large number of uploads, this could take quite a while to complete.

4- Overloading on the iTunes server infrastructure.  This doesn't seem to be as much of a problem as of this writing.   But when the service was initially rolled out in the US, and also in other countries, it was definitely a major factor.  Whenever there's a new iTunes version or if a new country is added, I would expect potential issues for a few days.   Also, I would check the iCloud Status page before running an initial Match -- http://www.apple.com/support/icloud/systemstatus/

 

 

2) Why is my very common artist CD rip not matching 100%?

 

There are many theories about this, but I believe the most likely reason for most common CD's not matching is mastering.  You've probably seen the term "re-mastered" alot, but what it essentially means is that the sound engineers have gone back to the original masters and tweaked the sound in certain ways.   Now since iTunes Match is primarily doing waveform analysis for matching, these slight variations between a CD master and whatever master iTunes is using could throw off the matching process enough to make it an upload, instead.

 

The Beatles' "She Came in Through the Bathroom Window" is a perfect example of this.  The version the older 80's CD does not match, but the 2009 remaster does match.  I'm convinced that it's because the iTunes database has the 2009 master and that there are enough differences between the two versions that the matching process is thrown off.

 

 

3) I don't want an album to Match, I actually want it to Upload.  Is there are way to force an upload?

 

Not as of this writing (Jan 2012).   I've requested a "force upload" option already and I would recommend that everyone do the same.   An example of this is the Beatles in Mono - some of those tracks end up matching with stereo versions, which you may not want.

 

You could also do some very tedious waveform changes in a sound editing tool to alter them enough to force an upload, but it's really not feasible to do this on a mass scale.

 

 

4) My song Matched, but it's still showing as 128kps in iTunes.  Where's my 256kps version?

 

It's in iCloud, but because iTunes does not delete your local version, you see that local version by default.  Some people dislike this, but I think it's a good compromise as if gives the user the option to either keep all their local music intact or to delete them manually later.   It's up to you.  When you delete a song post-Match, you'll see an option to delete the iCloud version.  If you choose not to delete that version, which is the default, then only your local copy is deleted and you are left with the iCloud version only.

 

Also, I would recommend enabling the "iCloud Status" column, in your Album List.  It's very helpful to visualize what the status is of your songs.  And here's a guide to what the icons mean:   http://support.apple.com/kb/ts4124

 

 

5) Once the Match process completes, can I delete all my local music on my PC?

 

This question comes up a lot for some reason, so I added it here.  The answer is that yes, you can delete your local files once they are in iCloud.  But the question you should really be asking yourself is "should I?".   The reason why I mention this are that there have been many reports of mis-matched files -- explicit tracks becoming clean tracks, mono tracks becoming stereo tracks, live tracks becoming studio tracks etc.   In my opinion, it's still a good idea to have your original files backed up somewhere locally, like an external hard drive.  But again it's completely up to you.

 

 

6) I have some vinyl and cassettes that I've ripped to MP3's - will these work with iTunes Match?

 

I have tested both and, imo, you should NOT expect a high success rate with these rips.   There are a lot of factors in play and results definitely vary - in my case, I've found that things like pitch and speed have a direct impact on matching, so if your tape player or turntable belt is not locked in the right pitch your results will suffer.  Also you need to match the start and end silence with whatever is used in iTunes, which can be a very tedious process with a lot of trial and error.

 

Overall, I'd say that if you are trying to match vinyl / cassettes as just a supplement to your main CD rips, it might be worth trying.  But if vinyl / cassette matching is your main reason for getting the service, then you will likely be disappointed.

 

 

7) Is there a way to get around the 25K library limit?

 

As of this writing, the only workaround is to create separate libraries.  This will at least allow the Matching process to run, if the library in question is smaller than 25K songs.  But you still have an overall 25K limit (sans purchased tracks) in iCloud itself.

 

 

8) It says I can have up to 10 devices, but I'm getting a "5 Authorized Computers maximum" error.

 

You can have up to 10 devices, but only up to 5 computers.   That sounds a little confusing, but think of it this way -- a system with iTunes is a "computer" as well as a "device", but an iOS system is only a "device".   So you can't have more than 5 computers using iCloud, the rest would need to be iOS devices before you reach the overall max limit of 10.

 

 

9) My files are showing up as "ineligible".

 

Check your file format, your kps rate and file sizes, as there are some limitations.  You can find more details here:  http://support.apple.com/kb/ts4054

 

 

10) I'm not satisfied with this service - can I cancel?

 

The answer is "most likely no".  In the Terms of Service, it mentions that the service is not refundable.  But, If you feel that the service is not doing what's been advertised, I would suggest calling them and stating your case - there have been reports of some people getting a refund, if their concerns are deemed justified. 

 

One caveat however, and something the rep may not tell you : If you do manage to secure a refund, you are not permitted to re-subscribe for one year.  So if the services gets an upgrade later that actually corrects issues that caused you to initially cancel, you might have to wait it out to try it out again.

 

 

11) Where are the other Apple iTunes Match support docs?

 

check out this excellent post from JiminMissouri -- https://discussions.apple.com/thread/3619849

 

 

 

Hope this helps!

  • 1. Re: Some User Tips (January 2012)
    carltonfrombedford Level 2 Level 2 (350 points)

    These are great, but like with Jim's post, most people don't search and we'll still be answering questions.

     

    Which is fine when I'm up to it.  I don't mind.

     

    It would be nice if people would search, but then I wouldn't earn any points for helpful answers.

     

    None the less I bump it up to the top.

  • 2. Re: Some User Tips (January 2012)
    roebeet Level 2 Level 2 (430 points)

    I have Jim's post bookmarked, and I've bookmarked my own now.  This way, if I see a "why is this taking so long" post I can just refer to this one.  Less typing. 

     

    As for earning points, I didn't think that far. But if you link to a bookmarked page, hopefully the user will give you the points for that post that points to the bookmark.   Also notice that I put the date on here since I know that it will likely be stale in six months, at least we hope it will be.

  • 3. Re: Some User Tips (January 2012)
    JiminMissouri Level 2 Level 2 (465 points)

    Good stuff Roebeet.  Anyone noticed some of the common questions are dropping off? I imagine the more we take what we've learned and post it, instead of hoping somebody will search, the better off everyone will be. I did think of the "points" issue, primarily because it does seem some privileges that could be helpful to everyone are tied to points.  For those that want to rack 'em up, I'd suggest taking a look at each post where the OP has decidd you answered the question, but never bothered to give you credit.  I don't see anything wrong with coming back and asking - or in the subtle way that I do it, responding to an obviously correct answer by saying, "robeet is correct"

     

    Add: probably the most effective way to get people to read "tips" is to do one per post and to make certain the headline will catch people with that problem, i.e. "How to make most ineligible files eligible."

  • 4. Re: Some User Tips (January 2012)
    JiminMissouri Level 2 Level 2 (465 points)

    bump

  • 5. Re: Some User Tips (January 2012)
    Mike Connelly Level 4 Level 4 (1,785 points)

    An addition to #7 - you can take songs out of the 25k pool by changing their media type to audiobook or podcast.

  • 6. Re: Some User Tips (January 2012)
    JiminMissouri Level 2 Level 2 (465 points)

    bump

  • 7. Re: Some User Tips (January 2012)
    Michael Allbritton Level 6 Level 6 (16,710 points)

    Bump

  • 8. Re: Some User Tips (January 2012)
    Michael Allbritton Level 6 Level 6 (16,710 points)

    Bump

  • 9. Re: Some User Tips (January 2012)
    JiminMissouri Level 2 Level 2 (465 points)

    bump

  • 10. Re: Some User Tips (January 2012)
    Michael Allbritton Level 6 Level 6 (16,710 points)

    bump

     

    for the new folks.

  • 11. Re: Some User Tips (January 2012)
    SteedGun Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Good information but the service just stinks.  I have been at this for 5 days.  I have 2269 tracks and Match is locked at 1840 and has been locked there for days!  After multiple reboots, restarts, etc.  This is the worst Apple solution in 25 years.  I go back all the way to the original Mac.  Either they have not provisioned enough bandwidth or they just have flaws.  Either way they had better get it fixed soon or this one will give them a big BLACK EYE!

  • 12. Re: Some User Tips (January 2012)
    JiminMissouri Level 2 Level 2 (465 points)

    SteedGun, it sounds like you have one or more problem tracks in your library and when it gets to a particular track, it just stops.  The only fix I've seen to this is to come up with a way to systematically remove groups of tracks that have not processed and try again.  Some have suggested populating a second library with a portion of what hasn't processed and running match on that library.  If it stalls, you've found one or more problem tracks.  If not, you add more tracks and keep going.  It's a major pain to do, and could be easily avoided if the inability to process a track resulted in an alert that named the track. 

     

    An ability to just tell iTunes to ignore that track (or for iTunes to just skip anything it can't process and give you a list at the end), would certainly be a huge help.

  • 13. Re: Some User Tips (January 2012)
    roebeet Level 2 Level 2 (430 points)

    SteedGun wrote:

     

    Good information but the service just stinks.  I have been at this for 5 days.  I have 2269 tracks and Match is locked at 1840 and has been locked there for days!  After multiple reboots, restarts, etc.  This is the worst Apple solution in 25 years.  I go back all the way to the original Mac.  Either they have not provisioned enough bandwidth or they just have flaws.  Either way they had better get it fixed soon or this one will give them a big BLACK EYE!

     

    I believe my comment in section 1.4 (about new countries being rolled out) is definitely a factor with the current issues.  I literally saw the service go from speedy to completely borked, about 36 hours ago.  

  • 14. Re: Some User Tips (January 2012)
    JiminMissouri Level 2 Level 2 (465 points)

    bump

1 2 Previous Next