Monday, January 22, 2007

MP3 Tag Fixing with MusicIP Mixer

I'm a stickler about my digital music tags (the meta data about a song). I've been known to meticulously scour my collection and manually fix bad identifying information. Slow and annoying!

Enter MusicIP Mixer, which promises to fix improperly-tagged files based on their Music DNS database of over 26 million songs. A quick analysis of my collection tells me that about 21% of my collection needs some sort of data tweaking. After a few minutes of churning through my songs (7 seconds per thousand tracks if you'd like to benchmark), I now have (more) pristine data, and to me that means more accurate cataloging, storage, and mixing. During the process, though, I received a couple of errors telling me that the application AACTagReader.exe (installed with the Mixer) had unexpectedly quit. Not sure what that's all about (need to look into that one). I figured out that two problems were causing the tag fixing to halt: read-only files and any file names that were very very long. After repairing all of the bad files, re-running tag fixing worked beautifully for the most part.

Some--not all--files with quote marks (such as '12" remix') in the ID3 track name were an issue as well. Although the tag fixer told me it had repaired these files, re-running tag fixing continued to find the same problem files. I may have to fix these files manually.

The paid version of the Mixer (only $20) takes the fixing one step further and will normalize artist names for you, so all those "Eliot Smith" and "Elliot Smith" tracks become "Elliott Smith."

Disclosure: I've been paid by MusicIP for a freelance project unrelated to the Mixer.

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