2004 to 2016 Mazda 3 Forum and Mazdaspeed 3 Forums banner

1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
635 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I've been struggling for a while to coax MZD Connect to correctly playback MP3 files on a USB drive, display the correct metadata / artwork and respond correctly to voice commands. I've now cracked the problem no thanks to a lack of Mazda documentation but many thanks to those who have provided advice on the forum. I've produced a guide of all the hoops I had to jump through to achieve the seemingly simple task of correct music playback. I hope anyone facing similar problems finds some useful tips which solve their playback problems.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
405 Posts
I'd add to the guide, that Gracenote changes not only Genre, but even Artist Name in some cases.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
635 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I'd add to the guide, that Gracenote changes not only Genre, but even Artist Name in some cases.
Some of my artist names were initially screwed up but I don't have that problem having diagnosed all the mp3 files and since using the top level folder trick to ensure MZD Connect does a full music update if I edit the USB drive. I've left Gracenote v8 enabled and all is now fine apart from Genre.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Thank you, thank you, thank you. I will be taking delivery of my new Mazda 3 1.6 Automatic Hatchback next week and I am preparing my iTunes music to play in the car. Your posting is so very helpful and I have followed each step line-by-line..

I will be using the USB 2 flashdrive.

I have converted all the music to v2.3.

I am an old man and not particularly tech-savvy so should appreciate your help on the following :

(3) When I want to consolidate, I get the message "Consolidating will copy all the selected files into the iTunes Media Folder. This cannot be undone". Will this have any effect on my future use of iTunes, burning CDs, etc etc etc?

Where will this "folder" appear (where will I find this new folder that has been created)?

(4) Artwork is not important to me. Do I need to have artwork in order for the music to play in my vehicle?

Do I then copy this folder from my computer to the USB 2 flashdrive?

I am terribly sorry if I am asking the obvious, but I am a terrible novice on anything tech.

I appreciate your help and assistance.

Best wishes,
Michael - from South Africa
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
635 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
The answer is no and no. You might find Gracenote finds artwork (possibly wrong artwork!) if you don't embed artwork in your music files.

Consolidating files copies the files into the folder structure Artist / Album / Track Name. iTunes is prone to truncating the folder names so rename those affected if you want to have the full name shown. The music files are stored in the location set in iTunes under Edit / Preferences / Advanced.

When you copy your iTunes files the USB stick, first create a top level folder like Music 1 then copy the iTunes files to that folder. If you change any music files then rename that top level folder e.g. Music 2 before copying the changed music files. That forces MZD Connect in the Mazda to rebuild its cache memory and recognise all music tracks. If you do this and have playlists exported from iTunes then you will need to edit your playlists to reflect the changed folder structure. I just use search & replace in MS Word to do this in a few seconds.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
First off, thank you sc489. I have struggled with most of the issues in your document: the cache, gracenote changing things, improper tagging, etc. This guide has been a great help.

I still struggle with album art. I have used mp3tag and tagscanner to embed the art into the tags for every album, but 95% of the art refuses to show up. I have the root level folder that I change each time i edit anything. I have tried ID3v2.3 and ID3v2.4 tags. I have run through mp3diag and tried to fix as many errors as possible. I thought it might be related to the file size or resolution of the images being too large, but one of the few albums that shows the art is 900x900 200kb.

Does anyone have any other suggestions?

I am running the latest version 70 mazda connect firmware, with a 64gb usb3.0 sandisk formatted fat32. The thumb drive has about 40GB used on it. I have gracenote disabled as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
635 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
First off, thank you sc489. I have struggled with most of the issues in your document: the cache, gracenote changing things, improper tagging, etc. This guide has been a great help.

I still struggle with album art. I have used mp3tag and tagscanner to embed the art into the tags for every album, but 95% of the art refuses to show up. I have the root level folder that I change each time i edit anything. I have tried ID3v2.3 and ID3v2.4 tags. I have run through mp3diag and tried to fix as many errors as possible. I thought it might be related to the file size or resolution of the images being too large, but one of the few albums that shows the art is 900x900 200kb.

Does anyone have any other suggestions?

I am running the latest version 70 mazda connect firmware, with a 64gb usb3.0 sandisk formatted fat32. The thumb drive has about 40GB used on it. I have gracenote disabled as well.
Use the MP3 diagnostic tools I mentioned to check you have the same and correct album art embedded for every track on the album and that each track only contains a single embedded album art image.

The only remaining problem I have is with shuffle (random) play. This only works if I list the albums them play All Songs at the top of the list with shuffle enabled.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
To easily batch resize the artwork, look up SanseMp3ArtSizer.. it's originally meant for the sansa mp3 player device that has the same issue with artwork. I just set it to resize all artwork to 500x500 and it works flawlessly, I get artwork on every single mp3.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Use the MP3 diagnostic tools I mentioned to check you have the same and correct album art embedded for every track on the album and that each track only contains a single embedded album art image.

The only remaining problem I have is with shuffle (random) play. This only works if I list the albums them play All Songs at the top of the list with shuffle enabled.
Have you upgraded to the newest firmware, yet? Shuffle was not very random on the previous firmware, it would play three songs in a row with the same first letter, then three from another letter. Since upgrading to version 70 firmware it is truly 100% random. I was so happy!

As for the album art, I verified that I only have 1 image for each album and that they are all labeled as "front Cover" in the tags. I will have to try darvetis' suggestion of re-embedding them, or arakon resizing idea.

Thank you for the suggestions. I will report back here later with the results.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
To easily batch resize the artwork, look up SanseMp3ArtSizer.. it's originally meant for the sansa mp3 player device that has the same issue with artwork. I just set it to resize all artwork to 500x500 and it works flawlessly, I get artwork on every single mp3.
Any chance you could share a link to this? I keep turning up a bunch of links from 2010ish that are all dead.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
/file/d/1tbbxJjrhl78gMF-FhOSt6NhPSs-tn-Xh/view?usp=sharing

I can't post links yet. So add drive dot google dot com in front of the above.


There you go.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
/file/d/1tbbxJjrhl78gMF-FhOSt6NhPSs-tn-Xh/view?usp=sharing

I can't post links yet. So add drive dot google dot com in front of the above.


There you go.

Thank you so much, Arakon. I tested this on a few albums and all the artwork showed up!

I am going to run against my whole collection today and hopefully i wont have to mess with tags again for a very long time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
I ran the art resizer against my entire collection last night. It took about 10 hours, but was totally worth it. I have not found an album yet that does not show the art now.

Thank you for the suggestion, Arakon.

Perhaps we could get this added to the OP, for anyone having art issues.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Easier way?

I have over 7000 songs / 33 GB (just the music files alone, not including album artwork) to transfer. If we're restricted to 8 GB drives, I could probably keep each genre on a separate drive, but how would I get the music loaded onto the drive in such a way that it will be recognized by the Mazda Connect system? I can't download the Library from iTunes by genre, can I? Alternatively, has anyone tried with a 32 GB or larger Flash Drive to see if it works? Just a guess, but I wonder if the limitation is the time it takes the system to read and recognize the library. If I leave it always plugged in to the USB1 port, would that make a difference? Or does it need to read and load the whole library every time you turn on the car?

I'm pretty tech savvy about some things, but pretty ignorant about iTunes I'll admit.

It seems this method would take me months of my spare time to finally get ready to play. Is there a quick way to use a USB flash drive for music? I can deal with some frustration about album covers, exact song names, and so on, I suppose. I'd just like to be able to get the music onto the drive(s) in such a way that Mazda Connect recognizes it. FYI, I can plug in my old iPod Mini and it seems to recognize the m4a files without conversion to mp3. But I'm not ready to spend $300+ for a dedicated iPod big enough to hold the bulk of my music in one place. Must they all be converted to mp3 format to work from a Flash Drive?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
which link are you referring to?
Both sets of instructions come up fine for me when I click on the links. (original instructions and the instructions here on page 2)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Haha, I spoke too soon. I could get it to work properly for about 2 minutes by deleting all artwork and changing the volume label of the USB drive, but Unknown Artist comes back immediately following Gracenote's ad tag. This is lame, it is not difficult to design a simple mp3 player that can read tags properly.
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top