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Newbie
Posts: 17
Registered: ‎09-21-2007

Podcasts, Bookmarks, Playlists, and Rockbox

What I would like to do:

 

Create a few different playlists for the podcasts I subscribe to (News, Song of the Day, Radio Programs, etc.) preferably without having to change the "Genre" field.

Switch between the different playlists and return to the file/timestamp where I had previously been playing for any of the playlists I decide to return to.

 

Is Rockbox able to do this?

 

I have seen the posts about the Sansa Clip+ hijacking "Podcast" files, and also the issue of playlists needing to contain relative file directories otherwise they appear "Empty" in the Sansa Clip+.  If you are having this problem see my post at:

http://forums.sandisk.com/t5/Clip-Clip/Empty-Playlists-missing-Podcasts-relative-path-names/m-p/2438...

 

I have successfully created the multiple playlists I wanted and have my Sansa Clip Plus able to read them properly, but if I leave a playlist and want to return to it later on, I have to remember which file/timestamp I was at in order to navigate to and resume where I left off.

 

I am surprised that SanDisk does not have this functionality in their players. Does the Rockbox version for the Clip Plus have this feature?

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SanDisk Guru
Posts: 3,233
Registered: ‎09-13-2008

Re: Podcasts, Bookmarks, Playlists, and Rockbox

In order to  make a playlist with files, they must be in the song database. If the player recognizes a files as a podcast(when it has the genre podcast or is in the podcasts folder) then it won't be in song database. To organize a number of podcasts as a series and play them in a certain order, then give them the genre podcast, and give each file in the same series the same album tag, Assign track numbers(with leading zeros when needed) to play them in order. Now the player can play a series of podcasts in order, and it will remember which file in the series was played last, and the position in the file. This is with the original firmware.

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Newbie
Posts: 17
Registered: ‎09-21-2007

Re: Podcasts, Bookmarks, Playlists, and Rockbox


@JK98 wrote:

In order to  make a playlist with files, they must be in the song database. If the player recognizes a files as a podcast(when it has the genre podcast or is in the podcasts folder) then it won't be in song database. To organize a number of podcasts as a series and play them in a certain order, then give them the genre podcast, and give each file in the same series the same album tag, Assign track numbers(with leading zeros when needed) to play them in order. Now the player can play a series of podcasts in order, and it will remember which file in the series was played last, and the position in the file. This is with the original firmware.


Thanks for the quick response  :-)

 

This is a very complex way to be forced to create a playlist out of Podcast files, but at least a method I had not come across.  This will not work for me for several reasons though:

 

1.  I want to use some of the same files in multiple playlists.  I will not be able to have multiple Album and Track tags assigned to the files, and I do not plan on making duplicates of my files to get around this.

 

2.  Having to rename the Album field to create a series would make me lose out on information I desire to keep about the files.

 

3.  I average about a dozen podcasts a day.  I do NOT plan on taking the time to individually renumber all of my incoming files on a regular basis.

 

I can do a bulk change of the Genre tag to do away with the Podcast issue without much trouble, but having to alter tag info individually is asking far too much.

 

Questions:

1.  Why are "Podcast" files not able to be treated both as bookmarkable "Podcast" files as well as "Music" files capabable of being listed in a standard Playlist?

 

2.  It is great that the Sansa Clip can keep track of play within a Podcast series, but can it do this across multiple series at once?  For example, can I have a "Music", "News", Audio Book" series and randomly switch between  them, picking up each one where I left off within it?

 

3.  If the Sansa software is able to keep track of play location within a Podcast series, why can't it be updated to do the same with standard playlists?

 

Thanks,

Jim

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SanDisk Guru
Posts: 3,233
Registered: ‎09-13-2008

Re: Podcasts, Bookmarks, Playlists, and Rockbox

It is actually very simple.  Editing tags is very easy using mp3Tag. In a single step you can change the genre tag of all files in a folder, set the album tag to the same value for all files in a folder, or set the title tag to the filename for all files in a folder. When you have then in the order you want, then you can have mp3Tag autonumber them.

 

As for having playlists of podcasts and having the same podcast in several lists, I don't see a need for that, but if you must do that, then you need to trat the podcasts like songs, and make due with having them in the song database.

 

"1.  Why are "Podcast" files not able to be treated both as bookmarkable "Podcast" files as well as "Music" files capabable of being listed in a standard Playlist?"

 

That would mean that they would be in the song database and would play when you shuffle your songs. People don't want podcasts to play when they shuffle their songs.

 

"2.  Having to rename the Album field to create a series would make me lose out on information I desire to keep about the files."

 

What information? Why can't you use the artist tag or genre tag for that(a file with any genre tag will still be considered by the player to be a podcast if it is in the podcasts folder).

 

" 2.  It is great that the Sansa Clip can keep track of play within a Podcast series, but can it do this across multiple series at once?  For example, can I have a "Music", "News", Audio Book" series and randomly switch between  them, picking up each one where I left off within it?"

 

Yes, as long as the player treats them as podcasts(they need to either be in the podcasts folder or have the genre podcast. All files in the series need to have the same album tag.

 

"3.  If the Sansa software is able to keep track of play location within a Podcast series, why can't it be updated to do the same with standard playlists?"

 

It wasn't designed to do that. The designers decided that resuming mid song for music files was not necessary. It takes space to store the resume points. The player isn't perfect.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Highlighted
Newbie
Posts: 17
Registered: ‎09-21-2007

Re: Podcasts, Bookmarks, Playlists, and Rockbox

JK"As for having playlists of podcasts and having the same podcast in several lists, I don't see a need for that, but if you must do that, then you need to trat the podcasts like songs, and make due with having them in the song database. "

 

Well, different people use the same device in different ways.  I find it very frustrating that with a simple tweak of the software it could be MUCH easier to use in a wider range of ways.

 

For me, I listen to a lot of podcasts, some news (different perspectives from different sources), some music (songs of the day put out by different indie music outlets), and at times I tend to get behind.  Normally I like having the music mixed in to break things up.  When I get behind, I want to be able to listen to just the news podcasts to catch back up on current events.  Once I am caught up, or am doing other things that do not allow me to pay attention to the news stories yet able to enjoy music, then it is nice to switch over to just the musical set of podcasts.  That means I have three primary playlists for my Podcast files: All Podcasts, News Podcasts, and Music Podcasts.  The All Podcasts list contains everything in the other two, interleaved in chronoligical order.

 

And I have done just as you suggested: removed the "Podcast" Genre tag and set up my playlists as standard music Playlists, but it took me a fair bit of searching on-line to get info about the need to do so since it is NOT intuitive about what is going on, and NOT mentioned in the manual.

 

JW"1.  Why are "Podcast" files not able to be treated both as bookmarkable "Podcast" files as well as "Music" files capabable of being listed in a standard Playlist?"

JK"That would mean that they would be in the song database and would play when you shuffle your songs. People don't want podcasts to play when they shuffle their songs. "

 

I don't understand why it would be that way.  If a file is marked as "Podcast", why can't it be placed in a non-podcast type of Playlist?  The Playlist is already pointing right at the file.  Follow what the Playlist is telling you to do.  If you are playing a Playlist, don't bother checking the "Genre" tag, it shouldn't mean anything at that point.  When playing all files randomly, have the Random function check the Genre and hop over it if it is a Podcast, although apparently this may be an issue with the Song Database.  I don't know the structure or purpose of the Song Database, but can't there be a field listing if the file is in the "Podcasts" folder, and if so leave it out of the count for total song files and left out of All Music/Random Music play?  Also it is VERY simple to just create a playlist containing all of your music files.  Start up the Music playlist, and go to Shuffle mode.  Shuffle mode will only play the files within the playlist as it is.

 

 

JW"2.  Having to rename the Album field to create a series would make me lose out on information I desire to keep about the files." 

JK"What information? Why can't you use the artist tag or genre tag for that(a file with any genre tag will still be considered by the player to be a podcast if it is in the podcasts folder). "

 

The Album info I want to keep (who produced the podcast) is already in the Album field.  Why should I have to manually transfer it for each file to another Tag field just to preserve the data I don't want to lose?  The artist tag already contains other info, and often already maxed out.  And if the player still considers the file to be a Podcast if it is in the Podcast folder, regardless of the Genre field, then why in the world is it playing around checking the Genre field if I explicitly put the file in the "Music" folder?

 

 

JW"2.  It is great that the Sansa Clip can keep track of play within a Podcast series, but can it do this across multiple series at once?  For example, can I have a "Music", "News", Audio Book" series and randomly switch between  them, picking up each one where I left off within it?"

JK"Yes, as long as the player treats them as podcasts(they need to either be in the podcasts folder or have the genre podcast. All files in the series need to have the same album tag. "

 

That is good to know, but also VERY frustrating since the functionality is so close to what I desire, yet the firmware seems to be doing a bit too much, causing the potential usefulness to be extremely limited, and at the same time needlessly crippling other functionality.

 

 

JW"3.  If the Sansa software is able to keep track of play location within a Podcast series, why can't it be updated to do the same with standard playlists?" 

JK"It wasn't designed to do that. The designers decided that resuming mid song for music files was not necessary. It takes space to store the resume points. The player isn't perfect."

 

I don't expect it to be perfect, I am just VERY frustrated since the functionality added since my Sansa Express is SOOOoooo close to being SO much more useful and capable of doing all that I desire to have it do, but by trying to keep track of podcast play in a more complex manner it has crippled other aspects and also required the end user to do a LOT of work that they should not have to be concerned about.

 

The Sansa doesn't need to keep track of what files are Podcasts, it does not need to keep a bookmark set per Podcast file.  Just use standard playlists, and have a file that stores a bookmark for each playlist.  If you want to keep Podcasts from playing when you just want all music/random music, ignore the files in the Podcast directory, but don't prevent them from being placed in Playlists.

 

For the average podcast user, who this new functionality is supposed to help, I still see this as being a bit more of a mess and usuing up more space on the player than needed.  The average user will not know that they need to change the Album and Track info for all their podcasts, instead leaving them at their defaults.  This will create dozens/hundreds of "podcast series", each one being given a Resume pointer, vs only needing one to a handful of Resume pointers for the number of playlists most users would have.

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SanDisk Guru
Posts: 3,233
Registered: ‎09-13-2008

Re: Podcasts, Bookmarks, Playlists, and Rockbox

Also keep in mind that the player will also keep its place in the file currently playing if you pause the player before turning it off. It will do this for a song, a podcast, or an audiobook file.