Archived - iTunes: How to create a Smart Playlist

Learn how to automatically create a playlist from specific songs in your iTunes library using Smart Playlists.

This article has been archived and is no longer updated by Apple.

Creating a Smart Playlist

When you create a Smart Playlist, you can choose to include only certain types of music, songs with high ratings, or songs that match other criteria. For example, you could create a playlist that's no more than 3 gigabytes (GB) in size, and includes only your highest rated jazz songs.

  1. Choose File > New Smart Playlist.
  2. To have iTunes add songs that match specific criteria, make sure to select "Match the following rule," then make your selections from the pop-up menus.

    • For example, you might want iTunes to only add songs that are by a particular artist, or songs with at least a four-star rating.
    • To add additional matching criteria, click the Add (+) button.
  3. To make the playlist a specific duration or size, select "Limit to" and make your selections from the pop-up menus.
  4. To include only songs that have a checkmark beside them in your library (and that match your conditions), select "Match only checked songs."
  5. To have iTunes continually modify your Smart Playlist as songs are added to or removed from your library, select "Live updating."
  6. To create your Smart Playlist, click OK, then name the playlist which will appear on the left side of the iTunes window.

Any songs in your library that match the settings you chose are added to the playlist. A Smart Playlist icon has a gear symbol on it.

Last Modified: Jan 29, 2009
  • Last Modified: Jan 29, 2009
  • Article: HT1801
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