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Best Version of ID3 Tags?

Hello all.

I am building an V0 MP3 library in iTunes (blah, I know, but my brother has an iPod Touch) and I was curious about ID3 tags.

Which is the best version to use?

All my MP3s are currently using ID3v2.3 (ID3v1 ID3v2.3) (this is what is shown by Mp3tag. Does that mean I have 2 versions of ID3 tags on my MP3 files? Is this a good or bad thing? Should I get rid of one?

Many thanks guys, and sorry for my torrent of n00by questions.

Take care.

Best Version of ID3 Tags?

Reply #1
The touch can read ID3v1, ID3v2.3 and ID3v2.4 without issue. To put it pretty pretty plainly, just use whatever you want. ID3v1+ID3v2.3 is perfectly fine. There is no universal "best" version.

To answer your question about getting rid of one (ID3v1 or ID3v2.3), there's no specific need to. iTunes knows what it's doing (with respect to tagging, anyway).

Best Version of ID3 Tags?

Reply #2
I also have both v1 and v2.3 tags, as some of my older players don't handle v2 tags, and some newer ones don't handle v2.4.  There doesn't seem to be any problem with having both of these versions of the ID3 tags. You can get rid of the v1 tags (if you want to) in MP3 Tag by going to Tools options and ticking off Write ID3v1 and clicking on Remove ID3v1, then re-write the tags. I think this is the default setting and at first my ID3 tags were all annoyingly removed.

Best Version of ID3 Tags?

Reply #3
I use v2.4 with no problems, but if you're looking for compatibility across multiple devices, v2.3 is your best bet.

Best Version of ID3 Tags?

Reply #4
The touch can read ID3v1, ID3v2.3 and ID3v2.4 without issue.


I am not sure about the iPod touch but I have run into issues even with the latest version of iTunes and ID3v2.4 compatibility.  For some reason, there are some instances when iTunes will insert square symbols before and after each ID tag entry.  A song name could come up as "? Song Name ?" (just replace the ? symbol with a full square).  iTunes (and my 120GB iPod classic) would display the song name, artist name, genre, year, everything with two squares like that.

Then again, it could have been foobar2000 that caused the issue.

Edit: So I would just stick with ID3v2.3 tags and drop the 1.1 tags.  By default, iTunes will use the v2.3 tags anyway and I have yet to come across a device (or application) that didn't support v2.3 tags.

Best Version of ID3 Tags?

Reply #5
iTunes/iPod has problems with Unicode ID3v2.4 tags
elevatorladylevitateme

Best Version of ID3 Tags?

Reply #6
I use ID3v1 + APEv2, since I replaygain my whole collection.
So any other tag would be waste, foobar can read APEv2 and other players and devices will go for ID3v1 and read this.
Besides that, manipulation with tags is much more faster that with ID3v2. You appreciate that with large music collections.
But this is useless hint for iTunes/iPod crap

Best Version of ID3 Tags?

Reply #7
iTunes/iPod has problems with Unicode ID3v2.4 tags

Curiously, I haven't encountered any issues with ID3v2.4 (UTF-8) tagged files and iTunes. All of my MP3s are tagged solely with 2.4. My iPhone 3G, iPod 5.5G and iPod touch all read all of my tags correctly. This is with iTunes 8.0.2.20 on Windows.

Best Version of ID3 Tags?

Reply #8
Again, I have never had issues with my iPod or iTunes with Unicode (UTF-8) ID3v2.4.

Best Version of ID3 Tags?

Reply #9
Besides that, manipulation with tags is much more faster that with ID3v2. You appreciate that with large music collections.

This is only true if you don't use padding. You can add padding at the encoding process or when you tag the first time (mp3tag will do this automaticly).

Best Version of ID3 Tags?

Reply #10
I use ID3v1 + APEv2, since I replaygain my whole collection.
So any other tag would be waste, foobar can read APEv2 and other players and devices will go for ID3v1 and read this.
Besides that, manipulation with tags is much more faster that with ID3v2. You appreciate that with large music collections.
But this is useless hint for iTunes/iPod crap
The problem with just using ID3v1 (with devices that can't read APEv2) is that your string lengths are severely limited. 32 characters for a song title might be good for 80% of the songs in your collection but the rest will be truncated. Replaygain values are just as easily stored in ID3v2 as in APEv2. I'd rather go with the tag most likely to be recognized in players.

Also, as onkl stated the speed "problem" is only an issue if you don't have enough/any padding, otherwise it takes no longer to write an ID3v2 tag than an ID3v1.

 
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