What are ID3v1 tags, and why remove them?

The MP3 standard does not provide a way to store the metadata in MP3 files. The first ID3 standard appeared in 1996 and is now known as ID3v1. This standard proposed to store the metadata in the small chunk at the end of an MP3 file.

The ID3v1 format now seems to be very limited. It can hold just seven audio tags: Title, Artist, Album, Year, Comment, Track Number and ID3v1 Genre Index. The text tags are limited by just 30 characters. The Genre Index can contain only 255 predefined values. The standard also prohibits storing non-Latin characters in the chunk fields.

ID3v1 still can be used by some old software, found on old Mac and Windows systems, or just in the car or portable audio players. If it is not your case, you can sweep ID3v1 metadata from your MP3 files, as not so that even new software is already using ID3v2.3 and ID3v2.4 metadata for a long time.

ID3v1 tags can confuse the tagging process, as one application can write to the ID3v1 tags only, and another to the ID3v2. Removing ID3v1 tags can reduce the complexity and help to ensure that all MP3 files use the same tagging method.

The software not supporting ID3v1 tags might report audio files containing ID3v1 tags as corrupted or having invalid audio frames.

The steps to get rid of ID3v1 tags in your MP3 files have been provided below.


Open files in the Tag Editor

In the Tag Editor, open one or more MP3 files that should have ID3v1 metadata removed.

Read More: Open files in the Tag Editor for Mac >>
Read More: Getting started >>


Show the Tag Format column

Show the Tag Format column to find out about metadata format in your MP3 files. This could be done both via main or context menu 'View / Column / Tag Format', or 'View / Column / Audio Properties / Tag Format'.

How to show the Tag Format column in Tag Editor for Mac

How to show the Tag Format column

Read More: Audio Properties columns >>
Read More: Audio Formats supported by Tag Editor for Mac >>
Read More: Show, hide, rearrange and resize columns in Tag Editor >>


Select cells in the Tag Format column

Select a few or all cells in the Tag Format column. You can do that with the keyboard shortcuts or via the top or context menu 'Edit / Select Column'.

How to select Tag Format cells in the Tag Editor

Selection of all cells in the Tag Format column via context menu.

Read More: Keyboard shortcuts for selection of cells and rows >>


Apply ID3v2.4 or ID3v2.3 format

In the active cell, press the accessory button with the three dots inside - select metadata format, which does not contain ID3v1 tags - for example, ID3v2.4 or ID3v2.3.

The format selected will be applied to all selected cells.

Changing the metadata format of audio files to ID3v2.4

Changing the metadata format of audio files to ID3v2.4.

Read More: Batch Tagging >>



When you finish, check the result of changing the metadata format of your MP3 files. Save the changes via ⌘+S or the 'File / Save' menu.

Changing the metadata format of audio files to ID3v2.4

MP3 files saved with ID3v2.4 metadata format.


Read More: How to change metadata format in FLAC files >>
Read More: How to save ID3 metadata in UTF-16 >>
Read More: How to upgrade ID3v1 and ID3v2.2 tags >>
Read More: How to remove all tags from MP3 files >>



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