Zortam Mp3 Media Studio is an all-in-one program for managing your MP3 collection, editing song tags, searching for and adding lyrics and cover art, and much more. It accesses and edits a lot more information about your MP3s, including ID3v1 and ID3v2 tags. It's freeware, but when you install it, you actually get the Pro version, which is shareware. If you don't buy the Pro version, it reverts to the standard program after a three-day trial period. But some of the Pro features we can live without or already have tools for, such as Normalization, CD Ripper, and batch album art and lyrics. Both standard and Pro versions excel at managing your MP3 library, though.
Zortam Mp3 Media Studio's user interface is busy, mostly due to the amount of information it displays, but a clean take on the classic Explorer layout makes everything easy to find. We started by scanning our system for MP3s. Zortam found and cataloged our MP3s without moving, renaming, or changing them in any way. The scanner has an option to overwrite library files. Don't check it if you don't want that to happen! If you're not sure, just consult Zortam's extensive Help menu, online forums, or support options. The same goes for Normalization, which equalizes volume levels for smoother playback but can re-code your files. Zortam's toolbar has lots of features, some standard, some Pro -- and the Tools menu has still more, including Autotagger, WAV and MP3 Converter, and a tool that creates books of lyrics, not to mention just about every means of searching or modifying metadata.
Zortam Mp3 Media Studio's standard and Pro versions share a basic embedded MP3 player that's OK for previews, but we changed it to our usual media player in the General Preferences since we wanted Zortam's advanced organizing and editing capabilities, not another MP3 player. The most obsessive music collectors will appreciate not only the plethora of data Zortam records and edits but also the ability to customize many features, including tag colors. The Pro version isn't expensive, but the free Mp3 Media Studio already has everything we need it to have.
Editors' note: This is a review of the full version of Zortam Mp3 Media Studio 15.0. The trial version is limited to three days.