When Apple gets to work they are able to create excellent programs. A clear example of this is iTunes, a multimedia files manager and player with unique features. Allowing us to play and organize music and video files, this program also works as an interface that allows us to play organize and synchronize the content of our iPod or iPhone. Itunes also enables us to access the iTunes Store though our Internet connection in order to buy and download music, videos, TV shows and series, software, games for our iPod, ringtones (available only in the the USA), audiobooks, podcasts, movies and also rent movies (not available in all countries). Today we are going to review its most important characteristics.
A Full Featured Media Player
iTunes is compatible with most audio and video formats, currently, iTunes is able to read, write and convert MP3, AIFF, WAV, MPEG-4, AAC and Apple Lossless. The conversion configuration can be done at Edit → Preferences → General → Import settings there you can select the encoder and the quality and whether to apply error correction or not.
Much More Than Just Playlists
Apart from common playlist we can find in any other media player, iTunes also counts on “special” playlists with instantaneous searches and algorithms of random reproduction which still have no rival in the media players market, such is the case of the Smart Playlists, these advanced lists can be configured to be automatically updated based on a custom list with a selection criteria. Different criteria may be admitted to control different aspects of the list.
The iTunes DJ playlist is intended to work just as a real DJ. By default, it randomly selects songs from other playlists or the library. We can prevent the automatic selection deleting tracks (iTunes will look for new to replace them) or by adding our own songs by dragging and dropping or context menu.
In addition to the classic detailed list, iTunes has a spectacular grid of covers and CoverFlow, a visualizer which can navigate though the library in three dimensions. Really spectacular.
iTunes uses the Gracenote CD database to provide interactive audio track name listings for audio CDs. The service can be configured to activate when we insert a CD into the computer and has an available connection to the Internet, if not, it must be done through manual procedure. If there are similarities it gives us to choose which CD is needed to complete the operation.
You Want It? Well, You Have It
The iTunes Store is a gateway to expand our music collections, there we can find podcasts, audio books or TV shows. If we do not have any ideas, the Genius sidebar will look similar pieces in the shop taking in account our local library file. It will also create a playlist starting with a song chosen by simply pressing a button.
Of course, iTunes seamlessly integrates with the Apple portable devices (iPod, iPhone, etc.) and will keep all our media content synchronized among them and our PC or Mac, However, iTunes would gladly accept other players, and will also save any audio CDs to our playlists.
If we are working, we can switch to iTunes Mini Player right away. In this way it will reduce its size to a minimum but still allowing us to perform many action like pausing, resuming, controlling volume and so on.
And if you're not satisfied with the sound quality, iTunes features a small ten-band equalizer for us to make fine adjustments to our hearts content.
One thing that is just average is the Internet radio, anyway, it works decently and has quite a lot of options, well arranged into genres where to choose from. Maybe Apple is loosing interested in online radios...
iTunes fits by far most of the multimedia needs any average user (like me) can have. Its spectacular and intuitive interface design and the power of its library are sufficient reasons to try it. What is more interesting is that its system requirements are not high at all and it is totally for free.
Have you tried iTunes? Please, let us know what you think about it in the comments section below.
Author: Lucas Artigas Review on: iTunes 126.96.36.199