I spent lots of time and wasted loads of CD's, but I think I now know exactly what should be done to burn an MP3 CD that the COMAND system will accept. Thought I would share my experience.
1. When you first rip your music, do so at a bit rate of at least 128kps. I use 160kps. I believe the COMAND will recognize up to 320kps. Anything less will not give your good music quality and, if you have LOGIC7, may not work properly, as per the COMAND manual.
2. MAKE SURE YOU REMOVE ALL ID3 TAGS! I've burned several MP3 songs that played well on my computer and other players but would not function in my car. Finally came to the conclusion that those ID3 tags (information such as artist, track number, music genre, album artwork, etc.) sometimes confuse the system and the song will not play. Worse yet, some songs with ID3's caused the unit to freeze up. You can find some great freeware programs to remove those tags. I use this freeware program (http://www.marre.org/id3remover/
) for my Windows XP machine. I'm sure there are many others out there that will perform this task. Do a Google search.
3. Once you have your music files cleaned of ID3 tags, arrange them in folders. I like to put folders of the artist's name in the root directory and put their music inside. This is a personal preference. You can of course name folders by music type, mood, etc. Use your imagination. Just remember that there is a limit to the number of folders that COMAND will recognize. My manual says 255 songs or folders in the root directory and 255 songs or folders in each folder. I have seen some postings where only 32 or 99 folders are recognized. Your system may vary. My system (2006 SLK COMAND) recognizes the 255 as stated.
4. Burn your CD's as Data files
. MP3 CD's that I've burned in the music mode (i.e. as an MP3 music CD) have occasionally given me problems. I use Roxio's Toast and you have the choice of burning as a data disk or a music disk - use the data disk option. Your computer by default will probably burn your files as pure data, but it might be 'smart' enough to recognize .mp3 as music and may automatically make a music CD. Try to turn this option off.
5. Burn at a slow rate. When you choose the burn speed, don't use "Maximum Possible". This is a general rule of thumb to maximize accuracy in burning. I'm not sure that it is necessary in this situation, but I do it anyway.
That's it. By the way, the above works if you are burning a CD or, in some COMAND units, a DVD
. My system recognizes DVD's even though I don't have NAV. This allows for A LOT of music on one disk. The rules are the same for both regular CD's (about 700 Mb) and DVD's (over 4 Gig).
Hope the above is helpful.