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I'm using Mp3Tag do edit Id3 tags in my mp3 files.

In the editor everything looks ok, but in my iTunes, some of them just ge messed up. The artist isn't read, Album Artist doesn't show up, this kind of thing. It's just random, some are messed up, some aren't.

How do I "debug" this problem? How can I check what is written in my mp3 metadata, if possible, running all my mp3 in a batch (since I have >100gb)? How do I know if there are "garbage" in the metadata section along with information I correctly edited?

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I would use either the "Rewrite tags" option in foobar2000 (I have "Enforce tag settings" enabled), or use mutagen - they both have very good ID3v2.4 support. But those aren't "good" answers though... – grawity May 20 '10 at 12:39
up vote 2 down vote accepted

As the previous posters have mentioned, use id3v2, preferably v2.3.

Sometimes, tracking down problems with tags can be quite painful and in some cases it's easier to remove all the tags and start fresh. That said, one of the useful features of Mp3Tag is it's export function. I've used this several times to find the problem in the 'raw' data.

Essentially, export a well formatted track and one that has a problem, either to csv or txt and compare the two. Using this method shows differences that aren't displayed in the standard interface. You can fix the problem and then re-import.

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Check that you are updating the id3v2 tags.

Wikipedia article on id3 tags

There are more tags available in the id3v2 specification so it could well be those that iTunes is reading.

I haven't got iTunes installed, but grawity confirms that it does read the id3v2 tags. To double check, open one of the "messed up" files to see which set of tags it's reading. You probably see the missing information in the id3v1 tags.

Then make sure that Mp3Tag updates the i3dv2 tags.

Winamp used to have an option for copying the tags between the two sets (where it could). I haven't used it in a while so I don't know whether it's still there or not.

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Even better would be to remove ID3v1 completely. I haven't seen a device that does not support v2. And it really can mess iTunes up. – grawity May 20 '10 at 12:31
@grawity - thanks for confirming that iTunes reads id3v2. I'll update the answer. – ChrisF May 20 '10 at 12:36
my last comment =~ s/it (really can mess iTunes up)/ID3v1 tags $1/ – grawity May 20 '10 at 13:15

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