Fuze *.pla playlists show up but are EMPTY! WTF?

I just purchased a new Sansa Fuze to replace my aging e280.

I have the entire e280 MUSIC folder backed up complete with sub-folders for Albums

and a separate folder for playlists.

I figured it would be simple to just copy the contents from my backup drive to the Fuze, and I would be running in no time.

Copying the MUSIC and PLAYLISTS folder was eay in MSC mode.

I disconnect, the units refreshes and my playlist show up but appear empty when I select them.

How the heck can a *.pla file be perfectly fine on an e280 and then non-functional on a Fuze?

I even tried copying directly from the e280 while both were connected to my PC.

I’d love to hear a solution for this otherwise the Fuze is going right back to Circuit City.

One would think Sansa has had enough time to get something as basic as a playlist correct.

Was your aging 280 a v1 unit? The v1’s used a .pla format playlist stored in the PLAYLIST folder on your player. The v2’s and the FUZE & CLIP have a different processor chip so they act a bit differently.

There should be no problem in copying over your library; it’s the playlists that are the ‘rub’. The only way to get .pla playlists to work is by letting Windows Media Player create them, but sometimes it likes to re-copy all the files again, giving you doubles of everything in your playlist.

The other way of doing it is by creating .m3u format playlists. I have found the only reliable way for me is to use Winamp, but other people have had luck with other methods. The only thing to remember about .m3u playlists is that they _ don’t _ go in the PLAYLISTS folder. They have to be put in the MUSIC folder with the music. I know; weird . . . but that’s the way it is.

Another thing or two, there is a 500 song limit on .pla playlists. No limit on .m3u playlists. And it is impossible to combine songs from BOTH the player’s internal memory and an SD card into a single .m3u playlist and have it work. It just won’t! You have to have a .pla playlist for that, which sends you back to WMP. Not a happy thought in my mind. :cry:

So I have my music arranged so that all the music I want on a particular playlist is in the same place; either the player or the card. A pretty crappy workaround I grant you; but it works. Do a search on “playlists” on the FUZE, CLIP, & e200 SERIES boards and you’ll be inundated with discussions on the subject.

What ticks me off is that Sansa isn’t smart enough to properly document a BASIC FUNCTION OF THEIR PLAYER!

THe User manual is worthless and the FAQ is worthless. 

The damned GOList CAN’T even be saved as a playlist! WTF?!

THe e280 would at least let you save it as a *.plp file with the same format as a *.pla file.

Well through trial and error I found that *.m3u playlists are the only ones that actually work on a Fuze.

Previously a PLAYLIST folder existed that stored all playlists.

The *.pla playlists needed to include the root folder MUSIC in the full path to the music file and

they were REQUIRED to be in UNICODE format.

*.m3u playlists for the Fuze are now stored in the MUSIC folder and the file paths MUST NOT include

MUSIC in the path to the file. The paths should start with the root SUBFOLDER within MUSIC.

These files should be standard DOS ASCII Files.

After figuring all this out I wrote a small app that will convert the UNICODE *.pla playlists directly

to DOS ASCII *.m3u files. I’ll post a link to it later so others won’t have to spend 8 HOURS

figuring out how to create useable playlists from their existing *.pla files.

Here is the code for the VBScript Converter App I wrote.

This only took me about 30 minutes but it should help others so they don’t go through

trouble I did.

Copy and Paste the text from the link into a text editor and save it as a *.vbs file.

Double-click on the file to run the conversion.

This converter does NOT delete the original *.pla files.

It simply creates new *.m3u playlist files in the same folder as the *.pla files.

The *.pla files are UNICODE and the converter creates standard DOS ASCII files.

Message Edited by tmarkoski on 09-22-2008 07:56 AM

I’m having a problem getting my playlist to save.  I don’t have any .pla files from an older player so I can’t use your app…I have an .m3u file generated from JRiver Media Center that I used to synch the playlists and files to my new Sansa.

I moved the playlist to the audio directory and got rid of the \Music header on each line.  I can’t save it as an ascii though.  I’m using Notepad in Vista, and my only encoding options are ANSI,unicode, unicode big endian, and UTF-8.  Is there an easy way to do this without installing a new program to vista?