Make the most of the latest version
Make the most of the latest version
Find your music
If you’ve already got lots of music on your computer, you can manage it easily by using the Libraries function in Windows 8. Simply open Windows Explorer from the desktop by pressing [Windows] and [E], then browse to the relevant folder. Right-click on it, then click on ‘Include in library > Music’.
View your libraries
This makes it easier for Media Player to find your tracks. Open Media Player, and then click ‘Organize > Manage libraries > Music’. This shows all of the folders currently in your library. Click ‘OK’ and Media Player automatically imports all of your tracks, if it hasn’t already done so.
Play and switch to Playing Mode
Double-click on any song to start it, and Media Player automatically queues up the tracks that follow. The default view does take up quite a lot of desktop space, but you can switch to Playing Mode by clicking the four-squared icon to the bottom-right of the screen. Click it again to switch back to library view.
Start a playlist and add songs
To the right of the Media Player window, you’ll see a panel with ‘Unsaved list’ at the top. To create a playlist of your favourite songs, simply browse to them and drag them into the right-hand panel. To save your new playlist, click ‘Save list’ and enter a name in the box at the top.
To add videos, click ‘Organize > Manage libraries > Videos’. To browse through your videos, click ‘Videos’ in the left-hand pane, and you’ll see them displayed in the central column. Double-click a video to begin playing it, and double-click again to view it in full-screen mode.
Rip a CD
If most of your music is currently on CDs, Media Player can rip them on to your computer. Insert a disc into your CD drive, and it shows up in the left-hand column. Select it and click ‘Rip CD’, then Media Player copies all of the tracks on to your computer and converts them to a suitable format.
Change the rip options
Media Player defaults to the Windows Media Audio format, which is high quality, but can’t be played on certain MP3 players. To switch to the more compatible MP3 format, click ‘Rip settings > Format > MP3’. You can also up the quality by selecting a higher Kbps value – but remember that higher quality means bigger files.
Sync to an MP3 player
If you own an MP3 player, syncing your music to it is a breeze. Simply connect your device to your PC, and it shows up in the panel on the right. Drag music from the central column into the right-hand panel as you did when creating a playlist. Next, click ‘Start sync’ to copy your music across.
Stream to another PC
You can also ‘push’ your music and media from Media Player to another computer on your network. Click ‘Stream’ at the top, then ‘Turn on media streaming’ – you need to do this on your destination PC, too. Click ‘Turn on media streaming’ again, and then you’ll be able to access all of the PCs on your network.
10 Let the music play
Congratulations – you now know how to find and play music on your computer, copy your music CDs to your PC, build a playlist and sync files on to your MP3 player. Media Player will automatically keep any changes to your collection up-to-date, and also seeks out album art for you.
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Enjoy your media in Windows 8 like never before with Windows 8: The Official Magazine's guide to getting the most out of Windows Media Playe...