Tag editor

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A tag editor (or tagger) is a piece of software that supports editing metadata of multimedia file formats, rather than the actual file content. These are mainly taggers for common audio tagging formats like ID3, APE, and Vorbis comments (for example Windows Media Player and iTunes), but can also be taggers for JPEG and TIFF metadata, for example (iPhoto).

A common purpose of tag editors is to correct and sort multimedia files, for example music collections. This often happens in a batch processing mode so that one doesn't have to manually edit every file on its own.


[edit] Song files

[edit] Manual

Most media player programs, such as iTunes or Winamp, allow users to manually edit tag and song file information. They can edit many advanced fields, including composer, release year, et cetera. Most players can automatically look up CD information from Gracenote — a database that contains track information for millions of CDs.

There are also many programs dedicated to the task of tag editing. These programs provide complex tag editing capabilities, such as batch editing, creating tags from filenames and vice versa, so they are useful when there's a need for editing a lot of files.

[edit] Taggers

  • filerename.co.uk, a free open source java program which allows you to rename, edit & tag your files.
  • MetatOGGer, freeware multifunction program for organizing and managing your music collection for Windows (WPF). Can edit tags, lookup for album information, covers online, extract tags from the file names or folder. Batch renaming and organizing with fully functional undo capability. Can also identify files from their acoustic fingerprint.
  • EasyTAG, a GNU package for Linux and Windows written in C. Supports many formats and standards as well as embedded album art.
  • Jaikoz, a commercial package, available for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X written in Java that uses the MusicBrainz database for auto-tagging. Supports embedded album art and auto-lyrics
  • Mp3tag, a widely used Windows freeware package supporting an array of formats and standards. Supports embedded album art.
  • TagTuner, a commercial Windows package supporting MP3, Ogg Vorbis, Flac, Windows Media Audio, Apple AAC and Lossless files. Can edit tags, lookup for album information and covers online, extract tags from the file names. Batch renaming and fully functional undo capability. Has built-in player and external players support.
  • TagScanner, freeware multifunction program for organizing and managing your music collection for Windows.
  • TagMp3Saito, open source C#.NET Windows program. Permits you to manage your tags with Microsoft Excel.
  • eyeD3, a quite sophisticated commandline Python tag editor, licensed under GPLv2. Being a commandline utility, it is easily scripted for complex use cases.

[edit] Automatic

[edit] Comparing already-existing tag information to online music databases

One type of tag editor compares the already-existing information in a song file's tag to information from online music databases, such as Gracenote / freedb / Zortam Music Internet Database (ZMLIMD) or MusicBrainz. If the already-existing tag information matches song information of a song from an online music database, then the tag information and information about the song (such as song name and album) can be changed according to that song information match.

[edit] Acoustic fingerprinting

An acoustic fingerprint is a unique code generated from an audio waveform. Depending upon the particular algorithm, acoustic fingerprints can be used to automatically categorize or identify an audio sample. Practical uses of acoustic fingerprinting include broadcast monitoring, identification of music and ads being played, peer to peer network monitoring, sound effect library management, and video identification.

[edit] Hash function

In hash function, for audio identification, such as finding out whether an MP3 file matches one of a list of known items, one could use a conventional hash function such as MD5, but this would be very sensitive to highly likely perturbations such as time-shifting, CD read errors, different compression algorithms or implementations or changes in volume. Using something like MD5 is useful as a first pass to find exactly-identical files, but another, more advanced algorithm is required to find all items that would nonetheless be interpreted as identical to a human listener. Although they are not common[citation needed], hashing algorithms do exist that are robust to these minor differences. Most of the algorithms available are not extremely robust, but some are so robust that they can identify music played on loud-speakers in a noisy room.[citation needed] One example of this in practical use is the service Shazam. Customers call a number and place their telephone near a speaker. The service then analyses the music, and compares it to known hash values in its database. The name of the music is sent to the user. An open source alternative to this service is MusicBrainz, which creates an acoustic fingerprint for an audio file and matches it to its online, community-driven database.

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