My Media Library (requires a Windows PC)

While Sero does have a wide variety of streaming radio stations, there will be times when you want to listen to music that you've collected yourself. For this, the Media Library is the perfect tool. It allows you to browse, organize, and play your music, whether at home or on the road. You can even copy your music from CDs you own, or create custom CDs to play later.

Although you can listen to content in your media library from a Mac or mobile device, the media library itself must be stored on your primary Windows PC. Therefore, the instructions for managing your media library are optimized for Windows. Also, some features of the Media Library, such as the Sync List and working with audio CDs, are only available directly on your Windows PC.

Browsing your library

When you want to play music from your media library, the best place to start is the, Browse Library option. Here, you'll see a page with links to each of the folders and files in your library. The folders in your library will be designated with a "Folder" label at the end of the folder name.

Managing your media library

Before you can take advantage of the features in the Media Library, you must first make sure you have content to work with. To view your current Media Library content, or to import new content:

  1. Choose the Manage Library option from the Media Library screen. When you've done this, you'll see a list of existing folders and files in your library. Any tracks in your Sero Media folder will appear here.

  2. If you don't yet have any items in your library, choose the Import Media into My Media Library link from the Manage Library section. You will be presented with a list of folder links, including one for your Windows Desktop.

  3. Navigate to the folder which contains the media you'd like to import, and choose the Import This Folder link to make media inside this folder available in your library.

Once media is in your library

When you have media in your library, you can use the links on the Manage Library screen to copy, move, or rename files and folders so that your library is organized the way you want it.

The first section on the Manage Library screen contains a list box with the folders in your library. You can select the folder you want to manipulate with your Up or Down Arrow keys.

Then tab through the options available for that folder.

Press the Spacebar on the action you'd like to perform. If you continue tabbing, you'll encounter a similar list box.

This one contains the files in the top level folder of your library. Select the tracks you'd like to work with, and then press the Tab key to view the options available to you.

Then simply press the Spacebar on the action you'd like to perform.

A note about selecting multiple items

In list boxes for files and folders, you may select more than one item at a time, and then tab to the button you want in order to perform the appropriate action on all the selected files.

You can select multiple files in two ways.

The first assumes that the files you want to select are located next to each other. You may hold down the Shift key and use your Up or Down Arrow keys to select files in a list.

If the files you'd like to select are not next to each other, the method for selecting them is a bit different. Hold down the Control key, and then move through the list with the Up or Down Arrow keys. When you've found a file you'd like to select, press Spacebar on it.

Note that the Control key needs to be held down during this operation. Once you've selected the appropriate files, use your Tab key to find the button you want, and press the Spacebar to activate it.

Sync List

This section only applies to Sero for Windows.

The Sync List in the Media Library is used to manage content that you transfer to a digital talking book player, such as the Victor Reader Stream or PLEXTALK Pocket. To learn more, please refer to the section titled: Digital talking book players: listen where you want (Windows only).

Using playlists

There will be times when you'd like to play a particular group of songs without browsing for each individual selection. You might even want to create a custom CD with the group of songs you have chosen.

A group of songs which you organize to play consecutively is called a playlist, and you can create and manage playlists using the Sero Media Library.

Creating a playlist

To create a playlist:

  1. Choose the Manage Playlists option from the Media Library.

  2. Next, choose the Create a Playlist option.

  3. In the resulting dialogue, type a name for your playlist.

  4. Next, press the Tab key and you'll be prompted whether you'd like to use this playlist to create a custom CD. If you do, check this box.

  5. Finally, tab to the OK button and press the Spacebar.

Now you can begin adding songs to the playlist you've just named. You are presented with the contents of your Media Library, and you can browse to the first song you'd like to add.

Once you've found it, simply press Enter, and the song will be added to the playlist. At this point, you can continue adding songs by browsing for them, listen to the playlist you've just created, create an audio CD from the playlist, create another playlist, or return to the Media Library main menu.

Playing content

There are several ways to play the content in your Media Library. However, for each option you choose, the content will always open in the Sero media player. For this reason, we strongly recommend that you familiarize yourself with how the media player operates by reading the help section on the Sero media player.

When you are ready to play content, you can select from a number of options.

  1. The first option is to play individual songs as you choose them. To do this, just browse your Media Library and press Enter on the song you want to play.

  2. The next option is to play tracks from your media library in random order. To do this, choose the Shuffle option from the Media Library main menu.

  3. The third option for playing content is to choose a playlist you've created. To do this, tab to the Listen to a Playlist option and press Enter. On this page, you'll see each of the playlists you've created. Tab through the group of playlists and press Enter on the one you want to hear.

Working with CDs

This section only applies to Sero for Windows.

The Sero Media Library allows you to play existing music CDs, copy tracks from music CDs to files on your hard drive, and even burn a CD containing songs from a playlist you've created.

There's nothing complicated to set up and no additional software that you need to install.

Playing a music CD

When you've inserted the music CD you'd like to play, you can choose the Play or Copy a CD option from the Media Library main menu.

Upon doing this, the CD will not immediately begin to play. Instead, the Sero Media Library will query an Internet database containing CD information and return a few possible matches for the CD you've inserted.

Select the best possible match from the list box using your arrow keys, then tab to the Continue button and press Enter.

Next, you'll be presented with a list of tracks on the CD. If you only want to play one track, you can tab to that track and press Enter on it to begin playing.

However, if you'd like to play all the tracks on the CD, you can press Spacebar on the Select All button to choose all tracks. To begin playing the CD, press Spacebar on the Play Tracks button.

Sometimes you may only wish to play certain tracks from the CD. To do this, press Spacebar on the checkbox associated with the tracks you want to play. Then, press the Tab key until you find the Play tracks button and press the Spacebar on it to begin.

Copying a CD

If you'd like to be able to listen to the music from a CD even when that CD is not in your CD drive, the best way to do this is to copy the files from the CD to your hard drive. These files will have the MP3, OGG, or WAV extension, depending on which format you choose, and can be played from your Media Library.

The initial steps for copying a CD are the same as those you'd use to play a CD. Choose the Play or Copy a CD option from the Media Library main menu, select the closest match for your CD, and choose the Continue button.

At this point, you may check the boxes associated with each track you wish to copy, or activate the Select All button with the Spacebar if you want to copy all the tracks on the CD.

Next, choose the format you wish to use from the Format to Use When Copying dropdown list.

Note that this dropdown list is located just before the Select All button in the tab order.

Uncompressed WAV format will generate the largest files by far, whereas the MP3 and OGG formats generate much smaller files and are perfect for playing both on your PC and from a portable device.

Finally, once you've selected your tracks and the file format you prefer, tab to the Copy CD button and activate it with the Spacebar.

At this point, Sero will begin the process of copying your files, and you'll see a page indicating progress. You can tab through the read-only edit boxes which display total percentage complete, copying Speed, status, and more.

You'll know that copying is complete when the message in the status edit box says: "done." You can now tab to the Close button and press the Spacebar.

The next time you browse your media library, you'll see a folder with the title of your CD, and within this folder you'll see the tracks you've just copied.

Editing CDDB information

Each time you insert a CD and wish to play it within the Sero Media Library, a database containing information about a wide variety of CDs is queried. When you choose the Play or Copy a CD option, you'll see a list of possible matches for your CD. You can choose the one which best fits, but sometimes the information in the database may be inaccurate.

In such cases, you can tab to the Edit CDDB Information button in order to correct any inaccuracies. Within the resulting dialogue, you can choose the proper category from the dropdown list, edit the artist, album title, year, genre, and track titles using the edit boxes on the page.

When you are done making changes, tab to the Submit These Changes to the Online CD Database button. Check this box only if you are certain you have entered accurate information and you want your changes to be visible to others who use the database.

If you don't want to submit your changes for everyone to see, but you do want the changes to be visible to you, simply leave this box unchecked and select the Save Changes button with the Spacebar.

Creating an audio CD

If you want to take music from your media library and make it available on a CD, you can do this with the Create an Audio CD option from the Media Library main menu.

To create a CD, you'll need a playlist and a blank CD. Note that you can use a CD or a CD/RW. A CD/rw is a rewritable CD, meaning that the contents of the CD can be rewritten whenever you like.

To begin the CD creation process…

  1. Make sure you have inserted a blank CD in your drive.

  2. Choose the Create an Audio CD option, and select from the playlists you've created. If you haven't yet created your playlist, you can choose the Create a Playlist option from this screen.

  3. Once your playlist has been chosen, you are presented with a screen which asks you what type of CD you would like to create. You can create a traditional audio CD, where there is a short silence between each song, or a radio mix, where the next song begins playing as the previous one fades out. Choose Radio Mix if you'd like this format, or choose Create a Plain Audio CD if you want pauses between songs.

  4. Once you've chosen your format, you'll be presented with a screen allowing you to choose the speed at which you'd like to copy the CD. Some older drives have difficulty writing a CD at the highest speed. In such cases, the CD does not read well in other drives. Still, you can experiment to find the speed which works best for your particular drive. For this test, we recommend the use of a CD/RW.

  5. When you've chosen the speed you like, press the Continue button with the Spacebar and the CD writing process will begin. When the operation is complete, the CD tray of your drive will automatically open and you can remove the CD if you wish.

Using the Media Library away from your primary Windows PC

You can access the contents of the Media Library, stored on your primary computer, even when you are away from home. Please note that the Home Server must be running on your primary computer for this to work. For more information about the home server, please refer to the section titled: Preferences (Windows only).

For more information on selecting your primary computer, please read the Manage Machines section under Manage Sero Account Preferences.

When you access the Media Library option from another Windows PC, you will need to choose the option called "Access My Home Media Library" to connect to the Media Library on your primary PC.

When you choose the Media Library option on a Mac or mobile device, you will automatically be connected to the Media Library on your primary Windows PC.

Once connected to your home Media Library, you can create and manage playlists, browse your library, and so on. Once you select some content to play, it will begin streaming from your home computer to the computer or device you're currently using. The quality of this stream will depend on the speed of your home Internet connection and the quality of the original audio files on your computer.

Last modified September 09, 2016

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