Subaru Ascent Forum banner
1 - 20 of 54 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, we finally got around to putting some .mp3 files on a USB flash drive. We like to listen to the music "by folder", not by album, genre, or artist. We have a "single level" of folders, and they show up fine (alphabetically). However, we have noticed several quirky, if not downright awful, behaviors regarding the media player:
(1) When we select a folder, all of the titles inside the folder appear and are played ALPHABETICALLY. That is NOT the order the music is intended to be played, especially if we are listening to a soundtrack!!!
(2) For one particular folder with 29 songs, I tried going into the properties for the mp3 files and manually setting the titles of the songs on the Details tab so that they start with a number, figuring that they would stay in order that way. When I put the USB drive in the car, about 1/2 of the songs showed up as I expected with the number sorted properly (16-29). Track 6 also had a number. However, the number was "ignored" for tracks 1-5 and 7-15, such that they did not have a number, and were listed alphabetically! I can't for the life of me figure out how that happened!
(3) While listening to a song in a folder, sometimes we want to see the other songs in the folder. However, when we hit the Browse button, it takes us all the way to the top of the list again, such that we have to scroll all the way back down to the folder and select it again, and then scroll through it. Sure, I could have just gone forward or backward, but then I can only see one song at a time, and can't "jump" to the song I want. In my Honda CR-V, I just hit the "select" button while a song is playing and it has me positioned in the folder at the song, ready to do something.
(4) When we turn off the car, it automatically switches over to the radio!!! Why not just let me continue listening to the music that I already had on???
(5) If I subsequently start the car, it once again automatically comes up with the radio. I can hit MEDIA, and it goes back to the folder/song I was at, but shows it at the beginning of the song and doesn't automatically start playing it. If I hit play, THEN it shows it at the point of the song that I was at when the car turned off, and it starts playing. Who designed this thing???
(6) It also takes quite a while to index when we turn the car on. I'd be fine with this one, but EVERY TIME we turn the car on??? Again, my CR-V doesn't have such a problem.

Anyway, am I not using this properly? Are there ways around these issues? Does my car have a "bug" in the media player? Or do other Subaru cars (Forrester? Outback?) have the same feature? I have a Limited with the Navigation package...

This is VERY disappointing for a car that otherwise is quite impressive...
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
10,954 Posts
I can help with two, maybe three, of those...

(5) If I subsequently start the car, it once again automatically comes up with the radio. I can hit MEDIA, and it goes back to the folder/song I was at, but shows it at the beginning of the song and doesn't automatically start playing it. If I hit play, THEN it shows it at the point of the song that I was at when the car turned off, and it starts playing. Who designed this thing???
(6) It also takes quite a while to index when we turn the car on. I'd be fine with this one, but EVERY TIME we turn the car on??? Again, my CR-V doesn't have such a problem.

Anyway, am I not using this properly? Are there ways around these issues? Does my car have a "bug" in the media player? Or do other Subaru cars (Forrester? Outback?) have the same feature? I have a Limited with the Navigation package...

This is VERY disappointing for a car that otherwise is quite impressive...
I agree with 1-4, so, I'll skip them. Other than custom file naming with "Artist - Album - Track# - Track Name" (which I used to do 20+ years ago when players didn't know how to read ID3 tags to find the track number), there's no easy fix for the one that's the biggest pain for me - playing albums out of order.

As for #5:
Turn on USB auto-play (or "Device Auto Play") in the settings

As for #6:
I have a 128GB NTFS formatted stick with 50GB of music on it, and it's very quick.
Try another USB stick and make sure it's formatted as NTFS, and then copy all the folders "at once" - by that I mean select them all on the computer, and drag them all at once to the stick to copy them, that way it copies them in order and builds a sensible directory structure and file system layout.

MOSTLY, I use Android Auto and Rocket Player to play songs stored on my phone. Otherwise, I use Android Auto and Google Play Music.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
334 Posts
I listen to MP3 books all the time on USB sticks and also have some complaints. I hate that I can't automatically play the next folder. So when I finish a disk, I have to go browse, sort by album, find my album and look for the next folder for my book. Since I have a stick with 10 books and maybe 60+ folders, it's hard to page through.



You have to choose one setting so the USB starts to play automatically. Check the media settings. However, the radio will still come on first. When you turn off the car, power to the USB ports is cut off so that's why you immediately switch to radio. I don't like it but I get it. I have a large USB stick and I haven't noticed the indexing being slow. Coming from my '15 Outback, this is leaps and bounds better. The Outback would forget where you were and if you are listening to a book, that sucked big time. I went back to CDs in the Outback because it was more reliable. The Outback was also MUCH slower to index. The Ascent it much better.



Renaming the files probably won't help - you have to rip the mp3 with the number prefix. It doesn't read the filename, it reads the MP3 embedded name. I check the filenames and disk names any time I rip something so I can get them to be in sort order.



Sorting by album, keeping your place for browsing and other simple things would be nice. I'd like more user configurable default options. I have noticed that the initial radio play time is actually much shorter than it used to be - not sure why. But my book will start up after only 2-3 seconds of radio now. I actually was pleasantly surprised when I pulled out this stick and played another. Later, I went back to this stick and it remembered exactly where I was. So some features are good and better than I expected.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
10,954 Posts
Renaming the files probably won't help - you have to rip the mp3 with the number prefix. It doesn't read the filename, it reads the MP3 embedded name. I check the filenames and disk names any time I rip something so I can get them to be in sort order.
Good to know!

I had a tool that would rename MP3's ID3 name... I will see if I can find it (or a more recent version since it's been ages). I never plan on using my USB drive anywhere else, so, I don't care how the stuff is named if it works and I can figure out the song name.

This is the stick I use. The radio is only playing for a second or two at most with it. Sometimes, not at all.

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B01BGTG2A0/

The other great thing about it is it's barely noticeable once it's in.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
334 Posts
Good to know!

I had a tool that would rename MP3's ID3 name... I will see if I can find it (or a more recent version since it's been ages). I never plan on using my USB drive anywhere else, so, I don't care how the stuff is named if it works and I can figure out the song name.

I used to have a tool as well but I don't remember the name and would have to find another. Nice USB stick. I have a lot of smaller capacity ones - all authors on one stick - a stick for new stuff. I have a large capacity for music but I prefer books on my long solo drives.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
565 Posts
So, we finally got around to putting some .mp3 files on a USB flash drive. We like to listen to the music "by folder", not by album, genre, or artist. We have a "single level" of folders, and they show up fine (alphabetically). However, we have noticed several quirky, if not downright awful, behaviors regarding the media player:
(1) When we select a folder, all of the titles inside the folder appear and are played ALPHABETICALLY. That is NOT the order the music is intended to be played, especially if we are listening to a soundtrack!!!

This is VERY disappointing for a car that otherwise is quite impressive...
Agreed - depending on how you listen it can be very annoying. Me personally, I have mine on shuffle and just a bunch of music on a flash drive. The manual for the infotainment system mentions how the drive should be formatted and how it reads songs/folders, so you might want to take a look at that.

Good to know!

I had a tool that would rename MP3's ID3 name... I will see if I can find it (or a more recent version since it's been ages). I never plan on using my USB drive anywhere else, so, I don't care how the stuff is named if it works and I can figure out the song name.

This is the stick I use. The radio is only playing for a second or two at most with it. Sometimes, not at all.

The other great thing about it is it's barely noticeable once it's in.
Just because I'm in IT/Tech going to share the Samsung flash drives as the Sandisk minis are known for overheating and eventually dying. The Samsungs do get a little warm, but seem to be pretty darn reliable. Also, solid warranty and CHEAPER.

128gb for $24

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B07D7PDLXC/ref=ox_sc_saved_title_3?smid=ATVPDKIKX0DER&psc=1

For using a drive this big and formatting to FAT32 you may have to use a 3rd party software like Mini Partition Tool which is free for home use.

I used to have a tool as well but I don't remember the name and would have to find another. Nice USB stick. I have a lot of smaller capacity ones - all authors on one stick - a stick for new stuff. I have a large capacity for music but I prefer books on my long solo drives.

There are some ID3 taggers out there, there's also a helpful free tool called fastfilerenamer which can help if you need to rename a bunch of files quickly. I think Winamp media player also allowed for editing ID3 tags.
 
  • Like
Reactions: scipio11111

·
Registered
Joined
·
111 Posts
I've had the folder problems on all my Subarus. I resorted to just putting all the tracks all together, and letting the Shuffle function be the DJ. Doubt they;'ll ever fix it, because music streaming is the go-to format these days.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
10,954 Posts
I've had the folder problems on all my Subarus. I resorted to just putting all the tracks all together, and letting the Shuffle function be the DJ. Doubt they;'ll ever fix it, because music streaming is the go-to format these days.
I see a "Favorites" button on the left, but I have yet to spend the time to see if it's functional and, if so, how I can add songs to it to make my own singular playlist.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
82 Posts
I have been thinking about how to handle this situation and I am thinking about just getting a handful of smaller USBs and just putting a playlist that I like on each one and then swapping them out when I want to change playlists. I know that it is cumbersome and that modern technology should have an easier fix but it seems every car out there has antiquated tech when it comes to this as they believe that everyone just streams their music anyway.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
411 Posts
Gonna throw my hat into the ring, but if you have them (being music or audiobooks) in Google Music; or even Smart Audio Book player on your phone, they integrate with AA and do just fine. I have the entire Dresden Files on my phone and they handle it just fine. It will go to the next just fine. I highly recommend it

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=ak.alizandro.smartaudiobookplayer&hl=en_US


Google Play music handles offline books really well for the most of the time, it's better handled on the PC to do the heavy lifting and then DL the music to the phone and it should be fine.


YMMV. just my 2 cents
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
494 Posts
Glad someone brought this up. I have the exact issue with the headunit! Even when it comes to browsing the channels on xm I have to keep scrolling back to where I was. It gets mighty frustrating. I sent subaru an email about it, but never got a response.



One trick I've done was to create a folder full of playlists and have it be at the very top so it is easy to access when "browsing".
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
918 Posts
In my Subaru Outback, the media player did order the files based on the alphabetical filename itself, rather than using the MP3 tag data. I did go into my USB and rename some files to fix the order. Naming them with track number first worked likes this
  • 01 - Song 1
  • 02- Song 2
  • 03 - etc

NOTE: the leading 0 is required or you'll have track 1, then track10, then track 11, then track2.

A brief check at lunchtime and it looks like my orders are still correct so I'm betting the new headunit does the same thing. Careful file naming and you should be fine.

There are tools that can read your MP3 tag data and create filenames based on that, so you should be able to automate the renaming if you have a lot to do! I can't remember the one I used off the top of my head, but I could look on my home computer if you need me to.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Robert.Mauro

·
Administrator
Joined
·
10,954 Posts
Just because I'm in IT/Tech going to share the Samsung flash drives as the Sandisk minis are known for overheating and eventually dying. The Samsungs do get a little warm, but seem to be pretty darn reliable. Also, solid warranty and CHEAPER.

128gb for $24

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B07D7PDLXC/ref=ox_sc_saved_title_3?smid=ATVPDKIKX0DER&psc=1
The IT/Tech Guy in me agrees as well. It's one of my frequent complaints about the Sandisk stuff that I am STUCK using in my phones (because sadly, Sandisk has had the highest capacity MicroSD cards now for the last half decade and more).

I'm not worried about losing my car's USB music collection though, and I liked the way the tiny SanDisk hides itself when plugged in.

I stay away from all of their other products just because of how much I hate the (lack of) reliability of their MicroSD cards.

So...
  • For those of you looking for better brand reliability, go with the Samsung FoRealz suggests.
  • For those of you looking for pretty and inobtrusive and so small it can't get in the way, buy the SanDisk, but beware.

This is pretty much the one thing I like about the SanDisk one (it's barely "there")...
 

Attachments

·
Administrator
Joined
·
10,954 Posts
Can you have that scandisk in for music and use AA for Waze?
Yes, that's one of the things that works really well with the system. You can use the USB stick for music while using AA and any app that's not on Android Auto's music tab and it mixes audio sources as expected (with the occasional glitch).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
82 Posts
Yes, that's one of the things that works really well with the system. You can use the USB stick for music while using AA and any app that's not on Android Auto's music tab and it mixes audio sources as expected (with the occasional glitch).
Well that is excellent because that is probably what I would need the media system for about 97% of the time!!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
92 Posts
I've tried every combination I can think of to adjust the music files on my USB drive and still I can only get it to play albums in alphabetical order. I've reworked mp3 tags in various ways, to no avail. I've renamed tracks every way I can think of
Artist - 01 - Track Title
01 - Track Title
01 Track Title
01_Track Title
01Track Title
1Track Title
etc, etc.



But still nothing but alphabetical for me. It's a really sh*tty way to listen to beloved albums! It's a very small thing but still has a large impact on how much I enjoy my Ascent.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
10,954 Posts
I've tried every combination I can think of to adjust the music files on my USB drive and still I can only get it to play albums in alphabetical order. I've reworked mp3 tags in various ways, to no avail. I've renamed tracks every way I can think of
Artist - 01 - Track Title
01 - Track Title
01 Track Title
01_Track Title
01Track Title
1Track Title
etc, etc.



But still nothing but alphabetical for me. It's a really sh*tty way to listen to beloved albums! It's a very small thing but still has a large impact on how much I enjoy my Ascent.
Go here:
https://www.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=2501727756534901&id=1181595818548108

I explain how to make playlists. It is pretty easy.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
10,954 Posts
Lol!

Or you can join the rest of us in the 21st century and just stream it from your phone :p
LOL! Sometimes, it's nice to have it readily available and not on or streamed from one's phone, such as on long road trips into the middle of nowhere with no data available.

Personally, I always go overboard. I have the USB stick, SiriusXM, and a phone with 30GB of music. In my case, I like that my Ascent starts up and plays what I like to listen to (via the USB stick) until I plug in my phone and decide whether or not I want to use it instead.
 
1 - 20 of 54 Posts
Top