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Discussion Starter #1
So what if I don't have my music formated in the iTunes format, what is the easiest way to convert everything. Right now all my music is in ALBUM, artist-title format. There is no track number information currently.
 

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Im not sure if this helps, but if you install itunes, then use it to import your music files and tell it to keep it organized it should put everything into itunes format
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Alright, I'll try that and see what happens.
 

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You don't need Itunes.

Put your music on a USB Flash Drive. Don't have my Focus yet so I can't speak from experience with the Ford. In my Acura the album names are displayed on the screen as folders and when selected the individual songs are shown. I think the songs are in numeric order first, then in alphabetical order. Shuffle play plays from all of the songs on the drive.

The songs do need to be in MP3 format.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
You don't need Itunes.

Put your music on a USB Flash Drive. Don't have my Focus yet so I can't speak from experience with the Ford. In my Acura the album names are displayed on the screen as folders and when selected the individual songs are shown. I think the songs are in numeric order first, then in alphabetical order. Shuffle play plays from all of the songs on the drive.

The songs do need to be in MP3 format.
At the moment the songs on my usb drive are in Folder/Albumname>artist-title.mp3. The problem is, the voice commands do not work to play specific albums or songs. I thought it might have something to do with the file naming format since everyone seems to use iTunes. I'll do a small test here shortly to see if it makes any difference and report back.
 

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At the moment the songs on my usb drive are in Folder/Albumname>artist-title.mp3. The problem is, the voice commands do not work to play specific albums or songs. I thought it might have something to do with the file naming format since everyone seems to use iTunes. I'll do a small test here shortly to see if it makes any difference and report back.
Please do report back. This is the one thing driving me nuts! I cannot get the voice commands to work for the play series. Shuffle, skip, repeat, browse etc. all work fine. I am using an iPod but that shouldn't make a difference. Everything indexes fine but it sits in a constant "Building Media Commands" loop. Says that constantly. I have checked the properties of random songs and everything seems OK. I have had the lovely Sync lady speak the names of random songs and albums and it seems Sync recognizes them and repeats them back in voice. Just don't know why I cannot use the play commands. Let me know what, if anything, you find out. Like I said, driving me nuts! While I know the system is not perfect and will probably not recognize everything I say I just want to get it to work even to some extent.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The first test I did was to remove all data off of my USB drive. Then I put one folder called Triumph on it with two songs inside using the same naming scheme that I have been using. In this case it was Fight The Good Fight.mp3 and Hold On.mp3. So now I start a voice session and say "USB". Then I say "play song hold on" and it works, the song played just fine. Now I want to test to see if it recognizes the artist Triumph and it cannot.

So now I know I can tell it to play song whatever but I cannot browse the existing artists on the device because it can't find the one and only folder on the USB drive. So if anybody has a clue how to format the songs so the artist is recognized please explain what the secret is? Does it look at the tags on the songs or does it use the folder names as the artists?
 

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Here is what Ford says on the SYNC page:

How to play your USB device and SD card reader with voice commands

To play your USB connected device, first connect it to the USB port. To play your SD card, insert the card into the SD card reader. Plug your media player into the USB port (located in the console or on the dash). For the exact location of the SYNC USB port and SD card reader, please consult your vehicle's Owner's Guide.

Press the VOICE button and say "USB 1," "USB 2" or "SD Card."
Tip: If you have named your device (for example, Laura's Nano), you may say "Laura's Nano" to command the device.
Then select from the following options to begin listening to the track you want.

Press the VOICE button and say:

"Play"
"Pause"
"Play album [Title]"
"Play artist [name of Artist]"
"Play song [title of song"
"Play playlist [name of playlist]"
"Play audiobook [name of audiobook]"
Once a song is playing, you can press the VOICE button and say:

"Next" to skip to the next track
"Shuffle All" to move randomly within the selected tracks. ("Shuffle Off" will turn Shuffle off)
"Similar music" to have SYNC choose songs based on the currently playing song.​
If that doesn't work you probably need to visit your friendly Ford service department.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
That's all well and good but the issue I'm having is browsing artists. It is absolutely ridiculous to think with hundreds of artists available I can remember them all. I want to browse the list of artists on the USB disk so I can decide what I want to play. When you plug in the USB device it should automatically give you a list to browse IMHO but that's not the way it works.
 

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That's all well and good but the issue I'm having is browsing artists. It is absolutely ridiculous to think with hundreds of artists available I can remember them all. I want to browse the list of artists on the USB disk so I can decide what I want to play. When you plug in the USB device it should automatically give you a list to browse IMHO but that's not the way it works.
That is good to know I will check it out when I get my Focus. I don't think my Acura lets me browse a USB by artist either.
 

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That's all well and good but the issue I'm having is browsing artists. It is absolutely ridiculous to think with hundreds of artists available I can remember them all. I want to browse the list of artists on the USB disk so I can decide what I want to play. When you plug in the USB device it should automatically give you a list to browse IMHO but that's not the way it works.
I'm able to browse by artist, album, and song all on the touchscreen. Just can't get the voice part work. You got a song to play by voice. I haven't even been able to do that.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I'm not sure what made the difference but I got it working just now. First thing I did was use the ARTIST/ALBUM/songname.mp3 style of naming. I had to manually rename everything and create folders for albums and such. I never used to care about albums before since I use a special karaoke/DJ program to organize everything most of the time. I guess now I need to start using the other format.

The other thing I noticed is when I first plugged into the rear USB port it showed up as USB 2 on the touch screen. I tried the browse all artists command and it worked! Then I parked the car and turned everything off to go get a movie at Red Box. So I turn it back on and tried to give the same command as before to browse USB 2 and it didn't work. Later I realized what happened because the touch screen now was saying the current song was playing from USB 1. Once I realized that the following command worked flawlessly:

USB 1 (wait for beep), Browse all artists

That's was it for me. There is definitely some strange bugs still present in MFT but this is a small one relatively speaking. All the play song commands work too.
 

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Here's a little lesson on MP3 music for those of you who have no idea how it works besides containing your song.

The MP3 file that is your song, also contains what's called an ID3 container tag. That's where all of your info is. The album, song title, artist, etc... and even the cover art are all written to these tags.

When it comes to playing back your music there are two different philosophies that the various mp3 player manufacturers came up with. First, they let you do it by file name only. Im talking Creative players, Plays for Sure stuff, etc.. This was good for basic playback but would NOT require or allow for searching by artist or title because the player was not reading those tags as a basis to play the music.

Enter the ipod and zune. They DO read those tags because it's far more powerful to be able to search based on criteria rather then basic file name. Wanna listen to all your albums that contain an Aerosmith song? no problem. Wanna listen to nothing but Metallica? sure. What about nothing but jazz music? easy. It's a much better system.

BUT - because the older players are so prevalent the fools who made early mp3's didn't bother to fill out the tags properly. In lots of cases the tags aren't filled in at all. Since the majority of you download your music from the internet your collections are likely to be filled with poorly filled out tags.

THIS IS WHERE MOST OF THE PROBLEMS WITH SYNC COME FROM. It works the new advanced way, not the simple old way.

You MUST have properly filled out tags on all your files or else you WILL likely encounter all kinds of crazy errors you think is ford's issue when really it's yours.

So, what to do? Well you could use an automatic program that fills out your info, but in 99% of cases in my experience they don't work. So, it's the MANUAL WAY. Learn and use a program like Tag scanner -

http://download.cnet.com/TagScanner/3000-2141_4-10056506.html

use it to automatically fill in the tags and then refine them manually one album at a time. Once you're done and you have everything filled out properly and saved properly, just about all of your playback issues magically melt away.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks for that info. I was looking for someone to verify whether sync used the file names or not. So you are saying that tag info is all you need? Does folder structure have anything to do with it also?

I've got my work cut out for me. It took years to organize all the karaoke files, now I have to do the darn mp3's as well. I have most of the tag info just not the album stuff organized into separate folders. If sync worked off the tags only that would be great but I'm guessing it needs the folder structure too.
 

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Here's a little lesson on MP3 music for those of you who have no idea how it works besides containing your song.

The MP3 file that is your song, also contains what's called an ID3 container tag. That's where all of your info is. The album, song title, artist, etc... and even the cover art are all written to these tags.
All my MP3's are tagged properly and is in proper file structure.
MFT just fails to run properly.
 
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