I am having problems using VLC Media Player on my MacMini to create m3u playlists that work on my Clip Sport.
I decided to try the freeware software “mp3tag”. The website includes a version that is specifically prepared for OSX users using “WineBottler”. This special version allows running the Windows version of mp3tag under OS X through a program called Wine. This has the side-effect that the app will still look like a Windows app, but the benefit is that you don’t need to install Windows on your Mac or have a virtual machine running — and you can run Mp3tag on Mac OS X.
Here is the link to download the OSX version of mp3tag with the Wine app included in the download.
For best ID3 tag compatibility with the Clip Sport:
Under Tools set: Write to ID3v2.3 ISO-8859-1. The ISO is how Windows displays the alphabet, as opposed to UTF on OSX.
I am having best results saving my m3u playlists inside the subdirectory that contains the related music files in the Music folder in the internal memory or external micro SD card. The playlist can only list music files that are in the internal memory OR in the micro SD card, NOT BOTH.
I use Music mode to access my playlists in the player internal memory.
I use Card mode to access my playlists in the micro SD card.
Today I discovered I can use Mp3Tag software to prepare a playlist for several mp3 files that are saved within an artist folder with a set of album subfolders on my Mac (or PC).
Here is my folder structure. Artist Folder -> Album 1, Album 2. Album 3, Album 4.
Each of the album folders has 12 mp3 files. I loaded the Artist Folder into Mp3Tag and all 48 music files appeared in the playlist & tagging screen. Then I clicked on File -> Playlist (all files) and saved a m3u playlist into the Artist Folder.
Then I can copy this set of folders into the Music folder on my Clip Sport (or my micro SD card). Then the playlist file I created on my hard drive automatically works on my Clip Sport. (No need to create a new playlist file on the Clip Sport.)
The default options for Mp3Tag Playlist creation are perfect for my desired result.
I find the easiest & most reliable way to create m3u Playlists for SanDisk players, using a software program on a Mac, is with the free software “mp3tag”. Unfortunately, mp3tag does not run “natively” on a Mac.
Fortunately, there is a way to run mp3tag on a Mac using Wine Bottler. This shareware program comes with a built-in method to install mp3tag. http://winebottler.kronenberg.org/
Using mp3tag within Wine Bottler solves the problem of incorrect CR LF line endings using a Mac.
ALSO, I discovered it is not necessary to include “Extended Info” in the ID3 tags for SanDisk players.
In mp3tag, under Tools, I found a check-box for “Write Extended Info”. When this box is not checked, mp3tag does not include any text lines with “#EXTM3U” in the ID3 data.
AND, your discussion does not mention the problem of all those pesky “dot underscore” files that are created on FAT32 drives , including using a Mac to manage music files on SanDisk players.