Thursday, September 11, 2008

iTunes 8 - now audiobooks are easy!


Thanks, Aldoblog! Michael Alderete's blog is a great resource for all things audiobook. Today's post convinced me to download Apple's new iTunes 8 software version. I really wasn't excited about the Genius playlist, updated visualizer, or HD TV viewing - the features on Apple's iTunes "What's New" page. But hidden on the iTunes A to Z page, there's news that will interest audiobook fans:

Set Media Kind

iTunes 8 includes a new feature that lets you properly categorize tracks you import from a CD. Say you’re importing a set of language learning discs. If you want iTunes to categorize tracks on those discs as audiobooks, just select the tracks and choose Audiobooks from the Media Kind pop-up menu in the Options pane of Get Info. Now, instead of appearing in your music library, your imported tracks appear in your audiobooks library.

What that means is that your position will be saved automatically when turned off, the audiobook will be skipped in shuffle play, and the audiobook speed control will be available from the Settings menu for ANY CD audiobook imported via iTunes 8! No more changing multiple drop-down menus while ripping CDs, or only having speed control with audiobooks purchased from the iTunes store. Changing the speed of audiobooks is a definite plus for me - and probably for many other iPod, iTouch & iPhone users. Thanks, Apple!

Image from www.apple.com

10 comments:

Chris said...

Thank you so much for this! It has been driving me mad trying to figure what to do. I thought I was doing something wrong.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately that thing doesn't work for podcasts...

Randy said...

Wow. that is awesome. It was such a pain before. I just converted one and it was so easy.

Sli said...

Sadly this feature is not working on older iPods :(
My 4th G. iPod does not recognize the iTunes 8 audiobooks as audiobooks but as normal albums.

Anonymous said...

But once you have converted MP3s to the audiobook format, they will only play on iPods and in iTunes. Beware the dead end.

Anonymous said...

To the last commenter, actually this is a mistake. Any mp3 can be made into an audiobook file. The only thing that's different is that you can play it at different speeds and it puts it in a category outside your music folder. No need to convert to audible file m4b was it. I think that's very old news. Ever since they've made MP3 files bookmarkable there is no reason for m4b files. This is where the Zune needs to do some major catching up. You have to work around this by treating files as podcasts in the Zune, which was a deal breaker for me when looking at buying one.

bob said...

Join CD tracks still grayed out ??
iTunes8...think I am using Michaels optimal settings (show CD, AAC Encoder, Spoken Podcast, etc), list sorted by track. Suggestions?

Anonymous said...

How do I join chapters together under one title after importing?

Pete said...

I must be missing something. I inserted a CD, highlighted all of the chapters, went to the file, get info and then to the options and changed it to audiobooks. Then struggled trying to figure out how to get them to import (so I essentially dragged all the files over to the library - tried to specifically drop into audio books unsuccessfully). Once they were downloaded, they still ended up in my music library rather than inside of my audio books section of my iTunes 8 library. Help the neophyte please. Pete

Mary Burkey said...

Hi Pete!

Take a look at this post on my new blog:
http://audiobooker.booklistonline.com/2008/12/06/importing-audiobooks-to-itunes-8/

Hope it helps!