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December 27, 2003

Making the Most of iTunes

iTunes is a great application. In my experience, it's the best digital jukebox software available on any platform (at any rate, easily better than WinAmp's tiny windows and neutered concept of a "library"). Even so, three small applications can make a world of difference in the enjoyment of your music.

Synergy. Without Synergy, you basically have two options if you want to know what song is playing: some widget that takes up permanent residence (iTunes' small mode or a Konfabulator widget), or opening iTunes' dock menu. Forget about both and install Synergy. Every time the song changes, a transparent display will appear briefly and inobstrusively at a location of your choice to display cover art and song information. $5.00. [Wincent Colaiuta]

Volume Logic. The iTunes equalizer does its job, but it's not the most amazing tool known to man. Similarly, while Sound Check is useful, it doesn't take most users long to realize its limits. That's why Octiv came up with Volume Logic. Not only will it maintain a constant volume between songs, but it will also improve their sound. Cheap price, excellent sound quality, spiffy meters vaguely reminiscent of the Teac graphic EQ in my stereo setup. $19.95. [Octiv]

Clutter. iTunes is capable of displaying album covers. Unless you buy music from the iTunes Music Store, your music doesn't have album covers embedded. Clutter solves this problem, retrieving covers from Amazon as songs play and allowing you to easily copy them into every song on that album. Its name comes from its original function -- the ability to drag the artwork onto your desktop as a freefloating window. Try it, I bet you'll like it. Free. [Sprote Rsrch]

Posted by Colin at December 27, 2003 9:35 PM

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