Category Archives: StationPlaylistStudio

Folders vs Categories

When I was trying to schedule music with my playout system (SAM), when I wanted to change the amount of airplay the songs were getting, I moved songs from folder to folder. Now that I am about to start using Music 1, do I need to continue to do that?

No. The SAM “clock-wheel” system is based on folders. You got SAM to play a song from Folder 1, Folder 2, Folder 3, etc. and then repeat. If you wanted to decrease the weekly spins/plays of one song, then you’d need move the audio file to a different folder that either had a lot more songs in it and/or was used fewer times in the “clock wheel”.

M1 schedules from its Categories, which are “rotation groups” and are not the same thing as “folders”. The audio files for songs in one M1 category could all be in the same folder or they could be dispersed into many different folders on the hard drive. The drive/path/filename that is entered into the CART field on the M1 song card is the important thing. That’s what M1 puts into the playlists it makes for SAM, that’s what tells SAM where to find and play the song. This is true for almost all of the internet radio playout systems. Professional-level playout systems don’t rely on drive/path to find and play audio files, but have their own unique “cart number” system instead.

In M1 there’s no need to ever move the audio files from folder to folder. And when/if you do move the audio file, you must also change the drive/path in the Cart field on that Song Card in M1. It doesn’t change automatically.

The folders on your hard drive are convenient for organizing files. You may want to have one folder for all of your Oldies, another for your Current songs and another for your Promos and station ID’s. But if you choose to move an audio file to a different folder, it is very important to also update the drive/path in the CART field on the M1 ‘card’.

You can do that manually, by typing in the change. Or, you can have M1 re-import the tags for it. If you re-import, M1 will make a ‘match’ on the Title+Artist and then update both the CART and the FILE fields on the card.

As you move into the M1 world and use this tool, I recommend you consider moving all of your on-air audio into one “master” folder and that it be directly under the C-drive. I named mine: Library
my path is: c:\Library\

I have a few sub-folders within it, like: Primary Gold and Legends and Classics. Thus, the paths to my songs are very short: c:\Library\Primary Gold\willie nelson-crazy.mp3

The long-term value in this is: when you move your operation to a new computer, you just copy your backup data (the Library folder) directly to the c-drive on the new machine. Then all the rive\paths remain the same and won’t need updating.

Do not worry about having songs in folders that you may not want to be played. The only songs that will be played are the ones that M1 schedules. One folder could have hundreds of songs in it that aren’t in rotation. You SAM will no longer be “picking” from the folder, it will only be playing the specific songs out of the folder that M1 tell it to play.

Audio folders for Internet Radio

Professional broadcast playout systems all use a short Cart Number to find and play audio files. That cart number is automatically linked to the audio file, no matter where on your drive the file may be saved. But most of the inexpensive internet radio automation/playout systems use the direct drive\path\filename to find and play songs.… Continue Reading

Question About External Hard Drives

If I sometimes use two different computers, is it best that I use an external drive to have my music on, as music 1 will try pull from that folder that music is on? M1 itself doesn’t necessarily have to have any connection to the location of the audio files.  that is something your playout system will… Continue Reading

Player Commands For StationPlaylist Creator

There are two outputs for StationPlaylist in Music 1/Professional. One for StationPlaylistStudio and another for the company’s Creator. Using Creator adds a lot more functionality to SPS, allowing one to manually insert Voice Tracks into a finished schedule, to merge a music schedule and a traffic schedule and to insert Player Commands that tell SPS… Continue Reading

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