Tunatic: Name that Tune

Written by: Adam Christianson

Categories: Cool Stuff

So how many of you are like me and have imported music into their iTunes library (while not connected to the Internet) and ended up with names like “Track 1”, “Track 2”, etc.? Personally, I am just too lazy to go track down the original CD and look on the back or in the liner notes to get the info. Now, I have a couple of those music loving friends who can name a track in an instant after hearing it, but they never seem to be around when I want to update the ID3 tags on my tunes, strange. Anyway, it turns out now I don’t need them thanks to an app called Tunatic. TunaticThis app works just like your music loving, know-it-all friend. It listens to the track played from any source into your Macs mic, captures its musical “signature” and then goes out to an on-line database and returns the artist and song title information. It is pretty amazing. I wish it also had an option to just listen to the audio going to my Macs speaker, but because it uses the mic you have the advantage of letting listen to external audio sources like the radio or your TV. Think, playback the audio from that commercial on your TiVo that has the song you can’t seem to pinpoint. I tried it with several tracks played in iTunes into my iBooks built in mic and it returned the correct information every time. I am sure it will not always be 100% accurate, but for the convenience this app is staying in my iTunes utility belt.

Update: Here is another app that does a similar function iEatBrainz. This one listens to the song playing directly from iTunes, no mic required.

There are 9 comments on Tunatic: Name that Tune:

RSS Feed for these comments
  1. Robert Nicholson | Jan 23 2006 - 02:12

    Why not just highlight the tracks and get Track Names in iTunes? This can be done without the original CD.

  2. maccast | Jan 23 2006 - 03:21

    That works, but only for CDs you import while connected to the Internet. I don’t think you do this for the tracks after the fact. You for sure can’t do it for track that you don’t import yourself.

  3. Buckdog | Jan 23 2006 - 04:04

    I use a free program called iEatBrainz for tagging my songs in iTunes. You don’t have to play the songs through the speakers, although that would be a good feature to get songs from other sources.

  4. solccs | Jan 23 2006 - 04:51

    Pretty amazing! I tried iEatBrainz and it worked on 5 out of 6 songs. Frankly that was way more than I expected. Very cool!

  5. craigeth | Jan 23 2006 - 08:51

    i just tried the advanced -> get track names on a bunch of songs that id imported from a cd ages ago. you have to be online of course, but you dont have to have the cd in.

  6. Willie | Jan 23 2006 - 11:28

    Alright I tried both programs and I found that iEatBrainz was the winner hands down. First you don’t need a mic. Second it is much faster. Third you can do entire blocks of music and import it into iTunes with one click. The only feature that could cause problems is that drop down bar that lets you choose different publications of the song. I ran about 400 songs through it and it worked great. It returned about 90% or so of the tags back accurately. I would say its a very good program. Hope this helps. Adam thanks for the MacCast it is one of only 2 podcasts I have time to listen to.

  7. Robert Nicholson | Jan 23 2006 - 11:49

    Yeah Adam, I’ve twice done this so I know it works. It’s not necessary to have an internet connection whilst importing the CD. Only when you want the names. The algorithm involves signatures of the songs etc so it doesn’t matter that you didn’t have an internet connection when you initially imported the CDs.

  8. Robert Nicholson | Jan 23 2006 - 11:50

    What I usually do is make a smart playlist of all songs that didn’t have the names and simply select everything in that playlist and then get track names. Worked last time for a lot of songs. I think order of the songs is important so you’d want to keep the original track # it used after import.

  9. Seriouslt GraceNote gets the names for you when you stick in your CD!!