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Playing iTunes Music Without iTunes

RobDickson
Grafter
Posts: 633
Thanks: 2
Registered: 06-08-2007

Playing iTunes Music Without iTunes

I've got all my CDs stored on a network drive, after having copied them using iTunes a while ago. They're in .m4a format and stored with each CD in a separate directory. With hindsight, I shouldn't have copied them using iTunes, but I didn't know any better at the time. I have three music players installed on my PC. Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, and QuickTime Player.
I must be being stupid, but is there any way of playing a whole CD? Windows Media Player won't play the .m4a format. RealPlayer and QuickTime Player will play individual songs, but won't play all the tracks in a directory. I haven't looked into playlists on RealPlayer, but I don't really want to have to create a playlist for each CD.
I'd rather not install iTunes or yet another music player onto my PC. Surely one of my existing media players should be able to do what I want. I'm not asking anything that complicated!
Am I being stupid and missing something obvious?
6 REPLIES
mossgrove
Grafter
Posts: 68
Registered: 18-08-2007

Re: Playing iTunes Music Without iTunes

One approach would be to convert the whole lot to .mp3 so they will play in any player.  There is a useful free program called Switch Sound Converter (www.nch.com.au/switch) which should be able to do the job in one batch run. 
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Playing iTunes Music Without iTunes

have you tried Winamp? http://www.winamp.com its free and can play complete directories with one click, also mp4 and m4a
RobDickson
Grafter
Posts: 633
Thanks: 2
Registered: 06-08-2007

Re: Playing iTunes Music Without iTunes

Thanks for the suggestions. It looks like I'm going to have to install some more software. I think I'll try the WinAmp option, since it doesn't involve messing around with the files.
Pogdin
Dabbler
Posts: 22
Registered: 18-08-2010

Re: Playing iTunes Music Without iTunes

I had the same trouble a while back when i built a media center PC.
You need to download 2 bits of software.... one so media player can read the m4a file info and a codec so media player can play the file.......
I cant remember where i got the files from, sorry, all i can remember is i found a website explaining how to do it by searching on google.

RobDickson
Grafter
Posts: 633
Thanks: 2
Registered: 06-08-2007

Re: Playing iTunes Music Without iTunes

Thanks. I thought that WMP would have used the codecs from RealPlayer or QuickTime Player, but obviously not.
I'll do some searching, but am a bit wary of downloading codecs.
RobDickson
Grafter
Posts: 633
Thanks: 2
Registered: 06-08-2007

Re: Playing iTunes Music Without iTunes

K-Lite Codec Pack Pro from Free-Codecs.com sounds like it might do the job.
http://uk.answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20090323062519AAX0frX
I should have done some more searching before asking for people's help.