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‘Join Together’ Category

March 15 '16 - 7:03 am
Use Overcast and Join Together to Listen to Audiobooks

Marco Arment’s Overcast iOS podcast app has been updated to v2.5. I use Overcast exclusively for podcast listening. It’s fantastic. The latest version of Overcast has a great new feature: file uploads. Patrons of Overcast are allowed 2GB of cloud space in which to upload files up to 250MB each. This is a great way to get audiobooks into Overcast from iTunes whereby you can take advantage of Overcast’s playback effects, like smart speed and voice boost.

And a great way to prepare audio files for upload to the Overcast cloud is to use use my Join Together app to consolidate the files of an audiobook to just a single file (or a small batch of individual files) under 250MB. In fact, it’s likely you could get about eight hours of decent-sounding spoken word audio in a single audio file under that limit when it’s encoded at 64kbps.

First, you need to be a patron of Overcast. Which means you’ve made an in-app payment in the Overcast app and registered. I’m an annual patron at $11.99 per year, but there are three-month and six-month patronage plans available also. Only patrons will be able to upload files to the Overcast cloud.

Use Join Together to create a Music file from a batch of tracks in iTunes (I had trouble with one m4b audiobook file created with Join Together and I’m not sure what the issue was. If I manually changed the extension to m4a in the Finder there was no problem.) Join Together will display the approximate final file size as tracks are dragged to it or the bit rate settings are changed. You want to make sure to keep your final file under 250MB (as underlined in red, below).

Also, since this file is only going to be used with Overcast, rather than add the final file to iTunes, you may want to use Join Together’s Advanced Session Options (Option-Export) to save the final joined file to the Desktop. Once you upload it to Overcast, you can remove it from the Desktop.

When the appropriately-sized audio file has been exported from Join Together, go to the Overcast uploads webpage. Navigate to the file you created with Join Together and send it to the cloud.

Go to Overcast app. In Settings make sure “File uploads” is on. Refresh. Your uploaded file(s) should appear in “Uploads” at the top of the Podcasts section, where it will play like any podcast episode.

Just to be clear, I’m not affiliated with Overcast or Marco Arment. I just like listening to good stuff in a clever way on great iOS software.

March 14 '16 - 2:56 pm
UPDATED: Join Together v7.6

Join Together 7.6 will create and export a single AAC or ALAC audio file from the audio data of tracks dragged from iTunes or files dragged from the Finder, leaving the original source tracks and files intact.

This latest version will honor an iTunes track’s user-set Start and Stop Times (which are accessible in the track’s Get Info > Options panel), the presumption being that the abridged version of a track is how you prefer to listen to it. But this behavior can be over-ridden in the Advanced Session Options (Option-Export) so that the Start and Stop Times are ignored and the complete duration of a track will be incorporated into the final joined track.

I’ve also fixed a few minor bugs and done a little low-level maintenance.

The unregistered version of Join Together will operate in Demo Mode during which all of its features are available and unrestricted. However, in Demo Mode the volume-level of the exported file will be sharply reduced after a few minutes and through the duration of the file. A registration code for Join Together is $5.00. This is a free update for registered users.

November 7 '15 - 12:42 pm
UPDATED: Join Together v7.5.3

Join Together will create and export a single AAC or ALAC audio file from the audio data of tracks dragged from iTunes or files dragged from the Finder, leaving the original source tracks and files intact.

Join Together

This latest version, 7.5.3, fixes a problem some users were seeing with encoding at lower sample rates, fixes an issue when using advanced Session Options and has minor performance enhancements. It’s a free update for registered users.

You can try Join Together for free in Demo Mode, which will sharply reduce the volume of the exported file after a few minutes. A registration code for Join Together that removes the Demo Mode volume restriction is $5.00.

September 4 '15 - 9:09 am
Join Together v7.5.0

Join Together will create and export a single AAC or ALAC audio file from the audio data of tracks dragged from iTunes or files dragged from the Finder.

Join Together in action

Join Together features:

  • Create a single audio file from two or more files drag-and-dropped from iTunes or the Finder
  • Export final file as AAC or ALAC (Apple Lossless) and automatically add to iTunes as a Music or Audiobook track
  • Join Together handles all audio processing; QuickTime or other third-party apps aren’t required
  • Non-destructive—source files are left intact
  • Flexible export options
  • Easily supply tags, artwork and playback options for the final file
  • Arrange, Get Info and audition tracks in the Track List
  • Save names and timing of source tracks as table-of-contents to Lyrics tag of final file
  • Built-in and online help

This latest version provides a button to reset the AAC export settings to 128kbps stereo @ 44.100 mHz for convenience; provides UI compatibility fixes between older and newer OS X operating systems; additional compatibility support for iTunes 12.2 and later; maintenance fixes and performance enhancements.

Join Together is free to try in Demo Mode during which all of its features are available. However, in Demo Mode the volume-level of the exported file will be sharply reduced after a few minutes and through the duration of the file. A registration code which will unlock the volume restriction is $5.00. This is a free update for registered users.

July 4 '15 - 10:01 am
iTunes 12.2 Playlist View Issues

iTunes 12.2 introduces a new View by which to display tracks in a playlist: “Playlist”. It displays a nice header with artwork from the tracks in the playlist and abbreviated tag information. I like it.

Playlist in playlist view

Except that there is an issue when dragging tracks from a playlist set to “Playlist” view to another drag-and-drop enabled application. The pasteboard that should contain metadata information about the tracks being dragged (“com.apple.itunes.metadata” is the name of the pasteboard type) only supplies the file paths (“NSFilenamesPboardType”).

This affects my apps “Join Together”, “M3Unify” and “Playlist Assist”. The workaround is to either drag tracks while the playlist is in “Songs” view or drag the entire playlist by selecting its name in the Playlist Column and dragging.

I’m working on fixes for those apps.

March 26 '15 - 6:13 am
Join Together v7.3.0 Now Available

I’m happy to announce a pretty cool update to Join Together.

Join Together will create and export a single AAC or ALAC (Apple Lossless) audio file from the audio data of tracks dragged from iTunes or files dragged from the Finder.

This latest version will accept dragged or copy-and-pasted artwork to be applied to the final joined file’s metadata. Additionally, there is now support for exporting 16-bit and 24-bit ALAC files at 44.1, 48, 88.2 and 96 kHz.

Join Together is free to use full-featured in demo mode, whereby the volume level of the final joined file will be sharply reduced at the half-way point of the file. A registration code, which when entered will remove this restriction, is $5.00. More info and download is here.

Additional screenshots follow. (more…)

July 28 '14 - 7:27 am
Join Together v7.2.0

Join Together will create and export a single AAC or ALAC audio file from the audio data of tracks dragged from iTunes or files dragged from the Finder.

This latest version includes fixes for some memory management issues in Mavericks and later. It will work under the Yosemite beta with iTunes 12, but observe the usual caveats about pre-release beta software.

Join Together is $5.00; this version is a free update for registered users of v7.0 and later. More information and download is here.

June 2 '14 - 3:44 pm
UPDATED: Join Together v7.1.2

Join Together, my app that makes a single file from tracks dragged from iTunes or from files dragged from the Finder, has been updated to version 7.1.2. It fixes some memory issues that might cause a fail or crash while joining many large files in successive sessions and fixes a problem validating numeric input.

August 15 '11 - 11:45 am
Join Together v6.1.2

Join Together v6.1.2 addresses an artwork-related issue that would cause a stall when adding the final file to to iTunes and fixes an issue with the shareware notice in Lion.

July 12 '11 - 9:21 am
Lion, Join Together and ChapterTool

I’ve been developing Join Together since 2004, when it began as just a simple AppleScript that automated the process of using QuickTime to combine the files of selected tracks into a single file. Later, I added the Cocoa interface and ability to chapterize with Apple’s “ChapterTool”. Well, “ChapterTool” requires Rosetta to run and Apple is discontinuing support for Rosetta in OS X Lion. That means that Join Together will be unable to to use “ChapterTool” when run in Lion and there really isn’t anything I can do about it. C’est la vie, to put it politely.

There are other apps that perform similarly (and better), but I know that Join Together is a favorite among a small number of Mac users (it was designated a Mac Gem by Macworld in 2008) which is why I have continued to maintain it. Therefore, I will be releasing an updated version of Join Together that side-steps the chapterizing options when run in Lion. However, these options will still be available when it’s run on Snow Leopard operating systems.

Look for the update within the next few days.

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