Ask the iTunes Guy: Re-download audiobooks, watch Netflix offline, and more

Kirk McElhearn Senior Contributor, Macworld

Senior contributor Kirk McElhearn (@mcelhearn) writes The Ask the iTunes Guy column and writes about Macs, music and more on his blog Kirkville. He's also the author of Take Control of iTunes 11: The FAQ.
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I’ve been getting lots of questions about lossless music files recently, and in this week’s column I answer another one. I also remind you that you can’t re-download audiobooks purchased from the iTunes Store, show how you can find songs that aren’t in any playlists, and look at a question about offline storage of Netflix videos.

Lost and not found: audiobook library

Q: I had a hard disk problem, and lost my iTunes library. I went to re-download my purchased music and audiobooks, and found that I couldn’t download the audiobooks at all. All the music was available, but not the audiobooks. Does this mean I’ve lost the more than 200 audiobooks I bought from the iTunes Store?

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Ask the iTunes Guy: Encoding miracles and missing audiobook chapters

Kirk McElhearn Senior Contributor, Macworld

Senior contributor Kirk McElhearn (@mcelhearn) writes The Ask the iTunes Guy column and writes about Macs, music and more on his blog Kirkville. He's also the author of Take Control of iTunes 11: The FAQ.
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It’s easy to forget that some of the technology we use is, to paraphrase a great author, nearly indistinguishable from voodoo. One reader wrote in asking for some clarification about lossless compression, and I explain the magic in this week’s column. I also look at a question about iOS device backups, and one about missing audiobook chapters in iOS.

It must be magic

Q: I read your column regularly, and really appreciated your recent explanation of AIFF, WAV, and Apple Lossless formats. But I don’t get it; how can the file size of Apple Lossless be half that of AIFF without some voodoo going on?

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Ask the iTunes Guy: Moving your iTunes library, holiday specials, and WAV vs AIFF

Kirk McElhearn Senior Contributor, Macworld

Senior contributor Kirk McElhearn (@mcelhearn) writes The Ask the iTunes Guy column and writes about Macs, music and more on his blog Kirkville. He's also the author of Take Control of iTunes 11: The FAQ.
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It may be the dog days of summer, but questions to the iTunes Guy are still coming strong. This week, I look at three questions. I explain how to move an iTunes library to an external hard drive, I look at how to tag Christmas specials of TV series, and I discuss the pros and cons of ripping CDs in WAV and AIFF formats.

Move an iTunes library to an external hard drive

Q: Is there a way to move my iTunes library to my external hard drive?

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Ask the iTunes Guy: Should you re-rip your CDs?

Kirk McElhearn Senior Contributor, Macworld

Senior contributor Kirk McElhearn (@mcelhearn) writes The Ask the iTunes Guy column and writes about Macs, music and more on his blog Kirkville. He's also the author of Take Control of iTunes 11: The FAQ.
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Sometimes, what seems like a good idea turns out to have unexpected consequences. One reader wrote in about album art that wasn’t syncing to his iOS devices, and had a surprise when he found out the reason. Another wonders whether it’s worth re-ripping songs ripped from CDs more than ten years ago. And another reader is looking for a way to save Internet radio stations in iTunes. In this week’s column, I have answers to all those questions.

Missing artwork on iOS devices

Q: I ripped a bunch of CDs of Bach cantatas, carefully scanning each of the CD sleeves to add the artwork to my tracks. It displays correctly in iTunes, but not on my iPhone or iPad. All my other artwork shows up on my iOS devices; what might be wrong?

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Ask the iTunes Guy: Inconsistent buttons and faulty gapless playback

Kirk McElhearn Senior Contributor, Macworld

Senior contributor Kirk McElhearn (@mcelhearn) writes The Ask the iTunes Guy column and writes about Macs, music and more on his blog Kirkville. He's also the author of Take Control of iTunes 11: The FAQ.
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iTunes has many quirks and inconstancies. In this week’s column, I look at a few of them. Why do Next and Previous buttons display only sometimes when you view track tags? Why does iTunes funnel videos into the Home Videos category? And why isn’t gapless playback working on iOS devices running iTunes Match?

Next and Previous buttons are inconsistent

Q: When I go to edit tags for a song in my iTunes library by pressing Command-I, sometimes Next and Previous buttons display at the bottom of the window; but sometimes they don’t. It seems random whether or not they show up. Can you tell me what’s going on?

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Ask the iTunes Guy: Changing tags and missing movies

Kirk McElhearn Senior Contributor, Macworld

Senior contributor Kirk McElhearn (@mcelhearn) writes The Ask the iTunes Guy column and writes about Macs, music and more on his blog Kirkville. He's also the author of Take Control of iTunes 11: The FAQ.
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Why on earth does iTunes sometimes change the tags of content in your library? Can you back up your iOS devices to a different folder than the default location? And if you accidentally delete all your movies, how can you get them back? Read on to discover the answers to these three questions.

Why the heck are may tags changing?

Q: I have a very specific way of tagging my music, and iTunes sometimes changes the tags of many of my songs back to the way they are in the iTunes Store. I’m not using iTunes Match, so why is iTunes changing my tags?

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Ask the iTunes Guy: When iTunes Match doesn't match

Kirk McElhearn Senior Contributor, Macworld

Senior contributor Kirk McElhearn (@mcelhearn) writes The Ask the iTunes Guy column and writes about Macs, music and more on his blog Kirkville. He's also the author of Take Control of iTunes 11: The FAQ.
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In this week’s column, I examine an iTunes Match problem that happens to some people, where their music isn’t available from a Mac. I also look at two questions which can be resolved using AppleScripts: One about queueing playlists, and another about exporting playlists to listen to on a USB stick connected to a car stereo.

Where are my matches?

Q: I have over 12,000 songs stored in iCloud with iTunes Match. For some reason, I cannot access them from my MacBook Pro. I can access all of them from my iOS devices, so I know they’re all still there. Is there any way I can fix this so I have access to iTunes Match on my laptop again?

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