Let's say I have a few of my favorite artists who I've told my iPhone to sync, even though those songs might not be in any playlist.

Is there any way, when I open up my iPod (now "Music" in iOS 5) to see who those artists are? Or maybe there are specific albums I've sync'd; is there a way to see those albums listed anywhere?

In other words, instead of just my playlists, and all the artists and albums that are on my phone, is it possible to see who the specific artists are that I've checked in the music tab in iTunes when syncing to my iPhone? Or even the specific albums I've checked?


Here's the use case, in case that prompts any workarounds.

I have my main "At Work" playlist, with my thousand or so favorite songs ever. Every once in a while though I might want a change of pace, and might want to browse through the albums and artists I like enough to sync in toto. "Ohh, Robert Cray sounds great right now". Currently, my "Artists" tab is full of every single artist anywhere in my iPhone, mostly because they have a song or two in the work playlist. I'd love to get a separate list of the artists and albums whose checkbox I checked in the iTunes Music tab to specifically sync.

  • Just for added clarity, can you tell us why you want to do this, you never know it may prompt a leftfield answer from a different direction ;) Thanks.
    – stuffe
    Oct 20, 2011 at 15:59
  • Also, the assumption is that you are using automatic syncing based on selections of a mix of playlists and individual tracks/albums, and not manual syncing.
    – stuffe
    Oct 20, 2011 at 16:00
  • Done, and yes, I tell iTunes which playlists, artists, albums, etc to sync. Otherwise my iPhone would overflow! Oct 20, 2011 at 16:14
  • Yeah, the playlist of things not in a playlist would at least be one step, but not ideal. Also, I can't test right now, so won't comment further - sure there is a way.
    – stuffe
    Oct 20, 2011 at 16:29

1 Answer 1


You could create a smart playlist that excludes files that are already included in another playlist.

So, in your case if you generally sync a playlist called "At Work" whcih contains what you normally sync, but then also throw a few others into the sync too, you could create a smart playlist that looks for any ticked track that is not already in the "At Work" playlist. Call this "Adhoc" or something, and add this to your sync list, and you should have a new playlist that shows anything that wasn;t part of your original sync list.

  • Hmm, may have jumped the gun on this, as I am not sure a smart playlist is tranferable. Try it anyway, and sorry if it's a dead end - it may transfer the contents of the playlist, but not the actual playlist...
    – stuffe
    Oct 20, 2011 at 16:19
  • The other possibility, of course, would be to create playlists for all these albums/artists, but was hoping there was something slicker. Thanks for your answer! Oct 20, 2011 at 16:27

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .