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... We are down to just one classical station in NYC. At one time, there were two all-classical stations and one public station that played a fair amount of music. The best of these stations was taken over by a company that shortly thereafter fired all the wonderful, knowledgeable personnel and then changed the focus to pop....
Both of those stations were (almost literally) the soundtrack to my childhood. Somewhere I still have a cassette recording of a 1969-ish rebroadcast (on The Listening Room) of a special April Fool's Day visit with Abram Chasins and three "musicologists" (all three of them a.k.a. Sir Peter Ustinov!). You can listen to it here. (Starts at 14:40 of a 55:24 Young Artists Showcase with Bob Sherman celebrating the station's 75th anniversary in 2011.)
 


While these types of streaming sources may be nice as a radio replacement, they do not provide the ability to listen to the content of our choice in a lossless manner – why many of us still desire and retain a curated music collection, no matter what roadblocks Apple throws in our path.
Which is why I will continue to buy and rip CDs. If Apple deletes the ability to play those tracks, there are plenty of other music player apps that can play the files (all but the DRM-wrapped ones that I purchased from the iTunes store many years ago) and even load them into an iPod.

And if Apple won't let me sync them to newer players, I have the skill (and desire) to replace the batteries in my existing iPods (a Mini, a Nano and a Classic), which I can sync with third-party tools (from Windows or Linux, if necessary). Or I can just copy them all to a USB stick and plug that into my car stereo.

Apple may have an agenda, but they can't force me to go along with it. All they can do is make me get my software from somebody else, which is probably not a bad idea anyway.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
If Apple deletes the ability to play those tracks, there are plenty of other music player apps that can play the files (all but the DRM-wrapped ones that I purchased from the iTunes store many years ago)...
I hit this annoying problem from time to time with music I purchased from Apple/iTunes that won't play on my third-party app (Swinsian), thanks to Apple's DRM.

What's the easiest and quickest way to recover this purchased music? I know we used to be able to "burn a CD" and recover from that, but what's the simplest approach nowadays? (I'm not interested in downloading or buying any third-party "tools" that may contain malware, etc.)
 


What's the easiest and quickest way to recover [DRM-protected] purchased music? I know we used to be able to "burn a CD" and recover from that, but what's the simplest approach nowadays?
I still have a USB CD burner, so "burn and rip" is probably still the best approach.

If you're concerned about wasting a bunch of CD-Rs as temporary storage, you can use a CD-RW and erase it after each use.
 


Which is why I will continue to buy and rip CDs.
Or I can just copy them all to a USB stick and plug that into my car stereo.
I still buy and rip CDs. The CD then becomes my backup. And I have found that putting the music on a USB stick and plugging into my car stereo works much better than Apple CarPlay.

CarPlay has an annoying habit of stalling or quitting. At that point, I have to detach the iPhone from the car, wait, re-attach, and hope it reconnects. And I can't do that while driving. The built-in Subaru system just works.
 


Another thought, for those without CD burners or the time to do a "burn and rip".

Can you play the track with iTunes and capture the output? It's been a long time, but I used to rip the audio content from DVDs this way. Back then, I used Ambrosia Software's WireTap.

Ambrosia doesn't seem to exist anymore, but I think you can do the same thing with Rogue Amoeba's Audio Hijack software.

In the worst case, you can just play the audio and attach your computer's (digital or analog) audio output to another computer's audio input and capture it that way.

Of course, all of these approaches will create losses, since iTunes purchases are AAC compressed and you're (probably) going to re-compress them after the capture. And there will also be some amount of line-loss if you're forced to connect two computers with analog audio cables. But the results will probably be good enough for most people.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
And there will also be some amount of line-loss if you're forced to connect two computers with analog audio cables.
That seems like the worst option, but maybe using optical output/input (TOSlink) or USB audio would be a viable alternative? But recreating the individual files and metadata could be a time-consuming pain.
 


That seems like the worst option, but maybe using optical output/input (TOSlink) or USB audio would be a viable alternative? But recreating the individual files and metadata could be a time-consuming pain.
Digital audio (S/PDIF, USB, etc.) will be lossless if you configure the interface for lossless audio. So make sure to use PCM and not some compressed format (e.g. AC3/Dolby Digital, which is often used for S/PDIF output).

Make sure the bit-rate on the interface matches the bit-rate and bit-depth of the source (probably 44.1 kHz at 16-bit, but check the original file to be sure) so you don't get any resampling artifacts.

If you use USB, consider connecting directly to the computer and not via a hub - especially if it's an older device limited to USB 1.x speeds.

Be sure to raise the system volume to maximum. On analog output, it will ensure that you have the "hottest" signal for the other computer to capture. For digital output, it may or may not matter - system volume settings don't always affect digital audio devices.

Finally, since you'll be capturing all audio coming out of the computer, be sure to silence everything else. Turn off all system sounds and make sure no other apps are running. You don't want your music ruined by a "new mail" chime or some other such sound.
 


I hit this annoying problem from time to time with music I purchased from Apple/iTunes that won't play on my third-party app (Swinsian), thanks to Apple's DRM. What's the easiest and quickest way to recover this purchased music? I know we used to be able to "burn a CD" and recover from that, but what's the simplest approach nowadays? (I'm not interested in downloading or buying any third-party "tools" that may contain malware, etc.)
If you have iTunes Match and the music is still available in the iTunes Store, then you should be able to download the DRM-free version of the music from the Store: About iTunes Plus
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
If you have iTunes Match...
The idea of having Apple scan all my audio recordings was not appealing, so, no, I don't have iTunes Match.

Of course, now Apple scans all my photos and videos and more to, cough, "curate" these for me, using "machine learning" to recognize faces and places, etc. – whether I like it or not (you can't say "no") – along with who knows what else....
 


I have a vexing issue that started in iTunes long ago and carries on to Music in Catalina. My peculiar use case is that play count is important to maintain. However, if I'm in the middle of a long audio file on my iPhone, occasionally the play count on my computer will be reset to zero (blank) with the last complete play date and time still filled in.

When I next sync iPhone to computer, the new play count is 1 (assuming I've completed the long audio file) or still blank, regardless of what it was before.

My workaround is to manually bump the play count to what it should be (I keep track in Catalina Music by exporting and searching Library.xml).

A new issue popped up this week, however, in Catalina Music. I have several files that have the same episode title but in all other respects are different. Two of the episodes I was in the middle of, over 3 days between syncs, had their play counts reset to blank, but they were not the ones I was listening to - they were the other episodes of the same title, different content! The ones I listened to had the correct play count after syncing.

It's a bizarre bug that I'm not even sure how to recreate. The reset seems to occur only when my iPhone is physically in the presence of the laptop running Catalina, even though I have WiFi synching turned off and the phone does not appear in the Finder.
 


What's the easiest and quickest way to recover this purchased music? I know we used to be able to "burn a CD" and recover from that, but what's the simplest approach nowadays? (I'm not interested in downloading or buying any third-party "tools" that may contain malware, etc.)
I've used Soundflower previously to record what the computer 'plays' through its speakers out to another 'sound output' device that can be captured as 'sound input' by another app (Garageband, Quicktime recording, etc.)

(The source is available in the link above).
 




After 6 weeks in Apple's discussion forums searching for a solution to download failures in Apple TV app on Catalina I was pointed to an Apple Support article. It doesn't directly address the issue I was researching, but it does contain confirmation of speculation about what you get when you purchase a movie (italics and underscore mine).
Apple said:
Find and watch movies with 4K, HDR, Dolby Vision, or Dolby Atmos
You can download a copy of an HD movie to your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, or PC, and you might be able to download HDR and Dolby Vision versions to your iOS and iPadOS devices, but you can't download a 4K version.
Just wondering why Apple buried this on their Support site instead of posting it on their iTunes/Movies page. The article was published the day Catalina was released, for what that's worth.
 


Thanks to VRMichael for casting light on what you really get when you pay for a movie.

Burying info such as this -- and Apple seems to do it a lot, although they're clearly not alone -- is a general behavior in sellers of services. Cell phone contracts come to mind. The idea seems to be to avoid outright lying, which can't be defended in court. Instead the customer gets all the opportunity they need to think the service is better or cheaper than it actually is.

In this very useful example, 4K content is not sold, but you can look at it as much as you want via streaming. Of course this involves paying for the download from your Internet provider, every time you stream. Yes, we pay for it even if we have unlimited data, because we pay not to have the limit.

Apple is helping the movie publisher keep hi-res versions of proprietary content out of general circulation. This way, the best-quality content can't enter general circulation via copying and can be resold as often as possible.

Selling hi-res is sometimes called "giving away the crown jewels". We hear this a lot when we discuss music downloads. The MQA encoding system, for example, is much more an attempt to shut off revenue leaks than it is a means of delivering quality.
 


Apple is helping the movie publisher keep hi-res versions of proprietary content out of general circulation. This way, the best-quality content can't enter general circulation via copying and can be resold as often as possible.
Except, of course, that it doesn't. The pirate community gets content before it is commercially available - sometimes before it is even released by the publisher.

Draconian controls only hurts the consumer. It really doesn't benefit the publisher in any meaningful way.
 


Thanks for the reference to Idagio. I'm listening to Baroque on the free version on their Mac app. It'll take me a few days to decide if it's worth a paid subscription to not hear ads. My only negative comment is that their web page pushed the subscriptions in my face and made it difficult to find the app download without subscribing.
A bit late to the show. I have been using Idagio for about eight months and I like it a lot. Easily able to find music you want to hear and easily able to experience new music. Apparently it is lossless quality and you can download music to your iDevice for when you aren’t connected to the net. The only problem I have is that I have found several albums that I have subsequently purchased. But that is me, not the app.
 


I'm experiencing unusual behaviour with iTunes 12.9.5.5 on macOS 10.14.6. This is the most up-to-date version of iTunes available for macOS Mojave.

All of my non-downloaded purchased iTunes content (music, movies and TV shows) disappeared from my iTunes libraries on my iMac and MacBook Air this evening. This content was stored in iCloud (note, not iCloud Music Library), as I have limited local storage space.

The purchased media were still present in my iTunes account, and could be re-downloaded, which is a tedious matter for something like Star Trek:Voyager (172 episodes), but after testing this with a couple of episodes I note that the 'remove download' option has gone from iTunes (i.e. keep a link from the iTunes library to the episode stored in iCloud), and the only option available is 'delete from library', which necessitates downloading again to watch. This is extremely aggravating.

I contacted Apple support, but the agent who assisted me simply suggested I re-download my content again, and could not offer an explanation as to why the (links to the iCloud) media had disappeared in the first place. Has anyone else experienced this? Is there an obvious fix I'm missing if so? I don't want to have to download 200+ GB of iTunes content onto local storage.
 


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