Album Art (Why can I not see it?)

  • 12 March 2007
  • 12 replies

Userlevel 2

My prefered method of copying my music is via MediaMonkey and my choice of encooding is WAV. I get all of my track listings and album art from the "Auto-Tag from Amazon" feature, and it places them into the folder with the music files (the images are JPEG). How can I get these to show on the SONOS system as they do not appear to?

Likewise I always checj the box with information about the particular CD if possible. Does anybody know if it is possible to view this on the SONOS system or not?

Thanks in advance for any help on the matter.


12 replies

Userlevel 2
Hi Mike,

Thanks for the advice that worked perfectly!!!
Did you know whether it is possible to view the additional information on the album that is available from Amazon?

Andy, all of the additional info from Amazon captured via MediaMonkey is available within Sonos as long as you tag the files (there are check boxes next to each item like artist, album, year etc). Also, WAV does not have great tag support. I would recommend FLAC as you will reduce your storage requirements by 40% or so, still maintain bit-perfect lossless file quality and enjoy widespread tag support. This is easy to do in MM - just use the format conversion tool (backup your library beforehand of course)

Userlevel 2
I have checked the box in the amazon auto tag, but don't appear to be able to view it on the sonos controller, any thoughts?

Is FLAC really as good as WAV the bit rate is considerably lower (that is using MM at least) I have not compared the two personally but have always been told that CD was encoded in WAV so assumed it was better (this may be incorrect, just what I was told!)

also check that you are synchronizing the tags in MM (under tools -> advanced tag management). As well as reindexing Sonos as Mike points out.

FLAC is better than WAV - identical quality playback (ie bit perfect), smaller files, better tag support. Don't confuse bitrates with lossy codecs. Two different topics. True, FLAC can generate smaller files (lower bitrates) than WAV but it does this through smart compression algorithms rather than throwing away data.

Userlevel 2
"Make sure that after you tag the files in MM you are updating the music index in Sonos (from the Desktop Controller click on the Music Menu > Update Music Index Now)."

This does not appear to work, do I have to turn anything on in the preferences (i've had a quick look but nothing obvious stands out). Once you have checked the info in MM where does it sort it because although I have checked it not file appears in the artists folder besides album art or the music files.
When you say the desktop controller does that mean that they are not viewable from the handheld controller?

Many Thanks

Can I say that so far I am incredibly impressed with the level of service from SONOS and all of the forum users. I have been on many forums where beginner users of products have been ignored by the forum members! It's nice to see such a helpful group of people and i'm sure gives many users confidence in the product.
Andy, try this

Choose just one file that is not working for you (whether this is artist, album, title, genre etc).
1. highlight the file in MM
2. click tools -> advanced tag management -> clean ID3v1 and v2 tags, then tools -> advanced tag management -> synchronize tags. Although this step is not necessary, it forces MM to delete all tags in the files and then write ID3 compliant tags back into the file. You can then be sure the files have all the necessary metadata
3. go to MM artist view. Check under the artist to see if you can see the track. Double check you are looking at the right file (check filename). It's easy to get confused if you have multiple copies floating around. You could of course check under album or what ever tag you are trying to get working.
4. clear out any trash folders (esp. if you use a NAS)
5. go to Sonos desktop controller and reindex your library
6. when finished, go to Sonos and check under artist (or which ever tag you checked successfully in step #3). You should see the track.

If that works, you can of course repeat the steps for all tracks you edit to get full tags.

If step #3 fails, you have a problem tagging the files (nothing to do with Sonos). You need to resolve in MM. If step #3 works, but #6 fails, be certain you are checking the right file. Try manually editing a file and edit the artist name to 123TEST or similar to make sure it stands out for you in Sonos.

If you can't see the track @ step #6, does it appear under Sonos folder view? Again, triple check you are looking at the right file. I spent hours trouble shooting once, only to discover I actually had 2 copies of the same track.

Usual library backup warnings apply.

I don't know if this is true for Media Monkey, but many tag editors have an option to "keep old file timestamp". SONOS indexing is smart. It checks the file timestamp and, if the timestamp has not changed since the last index run, SONOS will save time and not reindex that file.

This is a great feature, but it has had more than a few users burning rubber for a while.
good point Buzz. Fortunately MM does update the timestamp. A good double check in Sonos is to remove the library, then add the share back in. This will clear the library in Sonos to ensure no orphaned index records.

Userlevel 2
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I tag MP3 songs in MediaMonkey. Library has slightly over 10,000 songs. For several albums, album art shows up in MediaMonkey and on the Sonos Desktop controller but NOT in the Sonos handheld controller (I get a long pause, then the default art). I tried clean & synchronize tags in MediaMonkey. In Sonos (from desktop, if this matters) I tried Update Music Library, then I tried rebuilding it by deleting then re-adding the directory share. None of these fixed it. Why do Sonos desktop software and handheld controller not both find the same art? Thanks.
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Fwiw, the album cover art showing up in the desktop controller but not in the handheld controller seems to be CD covers that I scanned myself, image sizes significantly larger. Images that show up on the desktop are in 10-60 KB range; these scanned images that don't show up are in 400-1500 KB range. Looks like the handheld will not accept large art files so I need to resize the scanned images-- is that right? Thanks.
these scanned images that don't show up are in 400-1500 KB range. Looks like the handheld will not accept large art files so I need to resize the scanned images-- is that right? Thanks.

That's a lot of data to send to a handheld controller. There is a timeout for displaying images on the handheld. If the image has not arrived within x seconds (I don't know exactly what x is -- probably two or three seconds) the controller assumes that there is a problem with the image, the default image is displayed and the controller moves on.

The data collector in me does not want to throw away any image resolution, but your artwork is a bit large for this generation of hardware. It will be messy to work out the details, but you could store your current artwork in an archive and prepare smaller images or lower the JPEG quality for your production images.

On my first pass at album art I used images in the 112x112 pixel range because I wanted to minimize the space and transmission time required for the images. This worked great and the system certainly was "peppy". When the expanded artwork display feature was added, my tiny little images looked horrible when expanded. Currently, I'm working in the 300x300 to 500x500 pixel range, but I can imagine that a future generation of hardware will have larger, better screens and I may wish that the images were higher quality.
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Thanks. I think that description is exactly right. The maximum image size in my situation (might matter that Sonos is linked to PC by a wireless-G bridge) is more than 129KB, less than 198KB. For album cover art images of 198 KB and larger, there is a long pause, about 6 seconds, then the default album art appears. My thinking when I did scans of CD covers was to do fairly high quality because 1) disk space is basically free in the amounts we're talking, and 2) technology is improving, so as you said the 100x100 album art pictures that were fine for my Windows Media Center edition and our iPod are inadequate on the Sonos big-screen cover art display, so I might as well prepare for the next technological step. But was not thinking about the bandwidth limitation and need for Sonos to pick up image quickly. Will save the big scanned images for archives, but for current use will downsize them to the 500x500 range, about 50 KB.


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