2011 iMac, OSX Mavericks, iTunes

I'm a musician and am working on finalizing my new EP. I have the master .wav files in iTunes, which I then convert to .mp3 to send to some people for feedback etc. I have two playlists, one which contains the .wav files and one which is supposed to contain the .mp3 files, but that's where I run into trouble.

I can select the .mp3s and add them to the playlist in question via any means - drag & drop, right click, etc. Regardless, what actually ends up in the playlist, is the .wav files.

Obviously these files have the same names except for the extension, since iTunes created the .mp3s from the .wavs.

Why on earth does iTunes insist on adding the .wavs to the playlist instead of the .mp3s I have selected? And how can I fix this?

  • I'm not denigrating your issue, but does it actually matter? Both versions are on your Mac, why not play the best one? if you need to sync to an iDevice, set "Convert higher bitrate songs to..." & pick 128k mp3 or aac. [Qualification: have recorded, mixed &/or mastered many albums across the years & it's always been fine for me ;)
    – Tetsujin
    May 18, 2017 at 18:07
  • Because as I mentioned, this is so I can send the mp3s to people for feedback. I don't want to be sending them hundreds of MB worth of wav files. These are 320kb mp3s. For strictly listening myself, of course you're right, use the highest quality file. That's not the use case here.
    – JVC
    May 18, 2017 at 18:20
  • hmm, ok, sorry I can't actually help... I just checked my structure. I don't have any files with same name, different format from that use-scenario. I've always handled them outside iTunes, so I can separate the final 'real' released album 'purchased' from iTunes from any mix versions, which have a myriad different versioning/naming schemes.
    – Tetsujin
    May 18, 2017 at 18:38

1 Answer 1


While not answering the why part of my question, I was able to solve the problem by deleting the .mp3 playlist entirely, selecting the tracks in question, and adding them to a new playlist again. Now the correct files are in the correct playlist.

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