You are here

Log in or register to post comments
BillB
BillB's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 2 months ago
Joined: Aug 15 2007 - 2:04pm
use external HD as primary music library?

I'd like to use my external hard drive (1 TB) as my primary iTunes music library. My regular internal hard drive (320 GB) on iMac is getting too full. Is this easily do-able? I'm neither an idiot nor a computer hobbyist..

Drtrey3
Drtrey3's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 1 week ago
Joined: Aug 17 2008 - 2:52pm
Re: use external HD as primary music library?

Bill, I think a lot of us use an external drive to hold our music collections. Check into a networked drive as some computers and receivers can access them easily and quickly. Also, pleast get two external drives as you really, really need to back up the tunes!

I have my itunes on an internal drive that is backed up by carbonite. I have a full and high res collection that is on external hard drives. I basically record on one and back up and play on the other.

Welcome to the forum and best luck about expanding your tunes.

Trey

deckeda
deckeda's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 week 2 days ago
Joined: Feb 1 2006 - 7:41pm
Re: use external HD as primary music library?

Bill, this is easy to do, but there are several ways to do it. Exact steps will vary depending on your OS, your version of iTunes and how you have iTunes already set up. Google is your friend here, but in my opinion it's equally advantageous to understand a bit about what's happening behind the scenes when something unexpected happens. So that's what I offer here.

In the old days, all media files were stored in the "iTunes Music" folder, until someone at Apple realized users might also have videos, podcasts and mobile apps. So beginning with iTunes 9 there's been an option (not sure if it's yet the default behavior) to have it use an "iTunes Media" folder with various Music, Movies and so on subfolders inside.

I highly recommend invoking that behavior if yours isn't already set up that way. Makes a bit more sense when browsing through files and folders outside of iTunes when/if that's ever needed for troubleshooting.

1) So move that folder full of media to the new hard disk.

2) Tell iTunes where your media folder now is in its Preferences. It'll currently be pointing to the old location, probably.

3) Drag the media folder you moved INTO iTunes' open window. This will re-index its library such that it can find your existing media.

Note: step 2 only tells iTunes where to store NEW media; it has no bearing on how it knows where existing media is stored. That's why step 3 (or an alternative method that accomplishes the same thing) is vital. In other words, the fact that iTunes may show songs doesn't mean it can find them when you hit Play. It relies on a database file for that. If it didn't, it would have to index everything every time it was launched, in real time.

BillB
BillB's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 2 months ago
Joined: Aug 15 2007 - 2:04pm
Re: use external HD as primary music library?

Thank you both. Will do it soon. One question: when playing your library off the external hard drive, is there any delay, compared to playing off the internal?

I do plan to use a FireWire 800 cable rather than USB.

Elk
Elk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Dec 26 2006 - 6:32am
Re: use external HD as primary music library?

The computer interface to an external drive is technically a little bit slower but I doubt it will make any real world, practical difference.

tomjtx
tomjtx's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: Nov 12 2006 - 2:53pm
No noticeable delay in my set

No noticeable delay in my set up: Itunes>Media Folder on external drive.

BillB
BillB's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 2 months ago
Joined: Aug 15 2007 - 2:04pm
Thank you - It worked and works!

It worked and works! Thank you dudes. And the computer is running faster now; the internal hard drive was 90% full and starting to slow things down. Now it's got tons of room, and the 1 TB external drive has plenty more room to rip more cd's to it.

FYI, Apple was helpful too, referring me to this step by step page: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1449?viewlocale=en_US
The last sentence on that page helpfully noted that: "If your iTunes library was originally created using iTunes 8 or earlier, the iTunes Media folder will be called "iTunes Music" instead."

Also, as you note, there is no delay running iTunes from the external drive.

And I backed up my backup drive. Good housekeeping.

Bob in Coquille
Bob in Coquille's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 month 1 week ago
Joined: Nov 30 2010 - 1:40pm
use external HD as primary music library?

I am trying to do the same thing. I have no network and do not want the computer in my listening room. But the squeezebox touch says my hard drive is empty.

A post on the logitech website suggests reformating the drive as MS DOS, but that din;t help at all. Do I HAVE to have a network or a router?

BillB
BillB's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 2 months ago
Joined: Aug 15 2007 - 2:04pm
reply
Bob in Coquille wrote:

I am trying to do the same thing. I have no network and do not want the computer in my listening room. But the squeezebox touch says my hard drive is empty.

A post on the logitech website suggests reformating the drive as MS DOS, but that din;t help at all. Do I HAVE to have a network or a router?

You don't need a network or router to do change the iTunes library from the internal hard drive to an external one.
Not sure I understand the other question contained there... you have squeezebox connected to the computer, but it is not networked?

RGibran
RGibran's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: Oct 11 2005 - 5:50pm
No Computer or Network required
Bob in Coquille wrote:

A post on the logitech website suggests reformating the drive as MS DOS, but that din;t help at all. Do I HAVE to have a network or a router?

No you do not have to have a computer or network with the Touch. You can connect a USB hard drive directly to the Touch, but hard drives are formatted in FAT32 or NTFS formats. When they are formatted all data is removed, so you must reinstall your music library files onto the drive. Have you done this?

RG

BillB
BillB's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 2 months ago
Joined: Aug 15 2007 - 2:04pm
rply
RGibran wrote:
Bob in Coquille wrote:

A post on the logitech website suggests reformating the drive as MS DOS, but that din;t help at all. Do I HAVE to have a network or a router?

No you do not have to have a computer or network with the Touch. You can connect a USB hard drive directly to the Touch, but hard drives are formatted in FAT32 or NTFS formats. When they are formatted all data is removed, so you must reinstall your music library files onto the drive. Have you done this?

RG

Haven't done that. There are squeezebox touch users in the forums, hope they'll comment.

Bob in Coquille
Bob in Coquille's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 month 1 week ago
Joined: Nov 30 2010 - 1:40pm
use external HD as primary music library

I have to admit I failed to carefully follow the directions in the Apple site: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1449?viewlocale=en_US site. I failed to name the new file iTunes Media. Now that I have done that, I can play the music I have ripped from CDs.

What I am now struggling with is HD tracks I have downloaded and converted from FLAC to MP3 with Max. The HD tracks are silent, except for some slight static at the start though the SB, but play off the iMac.

Also, how do I get playlists onto the hard drive?

RGibran
RGibran's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: Oct 11 2005 - 5:50pm
Squeezebox Forums

Here's a link to the now unofficial but most popular Squeezebox forums. All your questions will be cheerfully answered there.

http://forums.slimdevices.com

RG

Bob in Coquille
Bob in Coquille's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 month 1 week ago
Joined: Nov 30 2010 - 1:40pm
SqueezeBox Touch

I did look at that site and found that flac files are handled directly by the SB. I put them on the HD without conversion through MAX and they played!

Thanks

RGibran
RGibran's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: Oct 11 2005 - 5:50pm
Good To Hear

you are getting on and enjoying the Touch!

Cheers

RG

chrisvs
chrisvs's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 6 months ago
Joined: May 12 2010 - 6:14pm
PC Laptop Choice?

Need a new pc laptop for travel. Also want to use it to store my music and photographs (supplemented by external HD). Plan to use wire connection to my Cary 11a. Which pc laptop should I buy?
Thanks,
Chris

RGibran
RGibran's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: Oct 11 2005 - 5:50pm
The USB to SPDIF converter is

The USB to SPDIF converter is probably the best way to connect a computer to your Cary. In that case any laptop of your preference with USB will fit the bill.

If you prefer to avoid this additional preferred wired interface you need to look for a laptop with digital out or at least a line out jack...not just headphone out. This will propably limit your choices greatly.

Of course streaming devices such as the Squeezebox Touch are another wired or wireless alternative for connecting to the big rig and again frees up your choice of laptops.

RG

Reed
Reed's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 weeks 1 day ago
Joined: Sep 6 2005 - 5:37am
I use a 2TB Firewire 800

I use a 2TB Firewire 800 drive with my Mac Mini with great success.

Drtrey3
Drtrey3's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 1 week ago
Joined: Aug 17 2008 - 2:52pm
about iTunes

I only use iTunes for mp3s and my ipod. I use WMP for my full and high res files. Itunes cannot play the big stuff, though I prefer the interface. Many people use Foobar, but that interface is not Trey friendly.

Trey

chrisvs
chrisvs's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 6 months ago
Joined: May 12 2010 - 6:14pm
PC Laptop Choice?

Some of the new laptops advertise a HDMI port. Would that be better than an USB/SPDIF interface to my Cary? Would I require some type of synchronization device to limit jitter in the bitstream?
Thanks,
Chris

RGibran
RGibran's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: Oct 11 2005 - 5:50pm
Laptops belong in your lap

In my humble opinion. :-) I just don't understand why anyone would want to tether a laptop to anything.

Which media players utilize the HDMI connection? This would be my concern, along with a host of other inherent problems. Operating systems, noisy fans, connecting and disconnecting a not so stable HDMI connector, blah, blah, blah...

My advice? Buy a squeezebox Touch, connect wirelessly and free yourself as well as your music!

Then buy a laptop for it's intended purpose, and for a music server as well.

Cheers,

RG

RGibran
RGibran's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: Oct 11 2005 - 5:50pm
But if you must
Bob in Coquille
Bob in Coquille's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 month 1 week ago
Joined: Nov 30 2010 - 1:40pm
SqueezeBox Touch

Turns out that playlists have to be created on the SB itself! All I wanted to do was link multidisk operas and it turns out I can. Most of them load onto the 2 T HD as Disk 1, 2 etc. So I can put them all in one folder renamed with the composer and opera.

The SqueezeBox is a fun gadget and it lets me access my CDs without having to have the iMac in my listening room. And I can download new HD music from the net. But it was not particularly intuitive to set up.

chrisvs
chrisvs's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 6 months ago
Joined: May 12 2010 - 6:14pm
PC Laptop Choice?

Thanks for the info. Question re Squeezebox: will wireless link have sufficient bandwidth? What of noise from other wireless devices? As to a dedicated music server, why spend the extra $$$ if I can use a pc with an HDMI out? Why would I use an USB port when I have a HDMI port?
Thanks,
Chris

Drtrey3
Drtrey3's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 1 week ago
Joined: Aug 17 2008 - 2:52pm
questions

Chris, some people worry about HDMI cables putting audio last. As I understand it (please correct me if I am wrong) in the HDMI cable the audio is chuncked and not streamed continuously. This places more computational and restoration demands on the DAC and that could lead to more jitter. Jitter, or timing errors, are huge in terms of making digital sound good. Reducing jitter is the main focus of the audiophile approach to digital and most of us would be very leary of any approach that might lead to more problems of that sort.

I avoid usb connections for that same reason, but I understand that technology is improving. But having said that, I don't use a music server, I use an old pc that does nothing but music, I just route it to my DAC with an rca cable from the sound card.

Trey

Drtrey3
Drtrey3's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 1 week ago
Joined: Aug 17 2008 - 2:52pm
questions

Chris, some people worry about HDMI cables putting audio last. As I understand it (please correct me if I am wrong) in the HDMI cable the audio is chuncked and not streamed continuously. This places more computational and restoration demands on the DAC and that could lead to more jitter. Jitter, or timing errors, are huge in terms of making digital sound good. Reducing jitter is the main focus of the audiophile approach to digital and most of us would be very leary of any approach that might lead to more problems of that sort.

I avoid usb connections for that same reason, but I understand that technology is improving. But having said that, I don't use a music server, I use an old pc that does nothing but music, I just route it to my DAC with an rca cable from the sound card.

Trey

Drtrey3
Drtrey3's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 1 week ago
Joined: Aug 17 2008 - 2:52pm
sorry

sorry about the double post. My wife always said I liked listening to myself talk. It must go for typing as well.

Trey

chrisvs
chrisvs's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 6 months ago
Joined: May 12 2010 - 6:14pm
PC Laptop Choice?

Trey, Thanks for you help and especially your patience. On your sound card, is there a digital out (spdif?)
At the moment I use a rca digital out from my existing laptop dock to stream Pandora to the Cary (my home office is in the back of my media cabinet allowing easy wired connections). I have noticed the Cary showing 48K when Pandora advertises 196k (I paid to avoid the ads). Have no idea why.
Getting back to the HDMI, one reason I favor it is that I also wish to use the laptop to show photos and videos on my TV (have DVDO Edge). Regarding audio, I understand there is a device that only corrects for jitter (some type of buffer that allows for synchronization?) but I assume they only have an SPDIF port. I don't need an external DAC, given the Cary. Is there one for HDMI?
Would appreciate your thoughts.
Chris

RGibran
RGibran's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: Oct 11 2005 - 5:50pm
Some soundcards

only output 48kHz max, which is not to be confused with 196kBps. Does the Cary indicate higher when you play hi res program from the laptop?

You would use a USB vs a HDMI because it _may_sound better and that is our focus here, obtaining the best sound quality.

You now move the goalposts by including video. So apparently you will elect for a computer with HDMI so give it a try for audio.

Cheers

RG

Drtrey3
Drtrey3's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 1 week ago
Joined: Aug 17 2008 - 2:52pm
you are welcome

Pal, no patience required, this is lots of fun for all of us! I use an Maudio 2496 audiophile card. It was about $100 and does have an rca digital out.

I love Pandora, but I do not listen to it at home yet. It is more of a work thing for me now.

As to the questions about the hdmi out and options, I am woefully ignorant on the subject and will wait for those more knowledgable than I to steer you.

Later and happy listening.

Trey

  • X
    Enter your Stereophile.com username.
    Enter the password that accompanies your username.
    Loading