Uniti Core random loss of album artwork

I must preface this by saying that I have searched and found the thread “Unity Core displaying skeletons instead of album art” posted by Echolane, which ran from June to October 2019. From this I am aware that it is possible to clear the image cache, which should result in all and any images displaying correctly once more. I have tried this several times, but with no apparent correction of my issue of random loss of images. So I would welcome further advice.

When first loading music onto my Uniti Core I did this by ripping direct to the Music share but found that album artwork began to be randomly lost weeks afterwards. Sometimes a double CD album (eg Pinnock and English Concert version of the Brandenburgs) would show different images for disc one and disc 2 of the same boxed set. Sometimes no image for disc 1 or disc 2 from a set (eg Wilhelm Kempff Beethoven Piano concertos) appeared at all.

Later I began to buy downloads and learned to use Mp3tag to make changes to the tags which included ensuring the image was embedded in every track. I also used replay with VLC media player to verify I had done this correctly, where the image has always appeared faithfully and reliably. Where I wished to omit some tracks ab initio it has also been useful to be able to change the content permanently, and also the album title to ensure the description and composer naming follow the convention I prefer. Only after all changes had been verified correct was any album then sent via the home network to the Downloads share. This was so dependable that it has become my preferred way to add music to the Core and I no longer bother to rip directly due to the inconsistent outcome.

More recently even this convoluted methodology has started to fail me. For example, last year a download of Boult conducting the Enigma Variations and The Planets was split as described above so that one could be stored and found under E for Elgar and the other under H for Holst, with the same cover image embedded in the two new albums. Over time only the Holst still had the correct image displayed but it was lost from the Elgar. It is now lost from both albums.

Now another first. I downloaded an album of Scarlatti sonatas from Presto Music last week and gave it the usual treatment with Mp3tag, changing the album name from Domenico Scarlatti to Scarlatti D, - Sonatas Vol.1 and embedding the artwork into all the tracks, not just relying on the fact that the album folder files included the jpg file. The files play back perfectly, but there is no image displayed in the UPnP listing, nor against each individual track in the playlist view.

The issue has defied switching machines off and on again. I even took the Core with me to audition new speakers but this has not caused further loss of images, nor sadly the re-discovery of lost ones.

I’m sure someone recently reported an issue with some music showing as just music notes, but for the life of me I cannot find it. I don’t know the Core, but suggest you start by making sure all your firmware is up-to-date and you do a 30 minute power off. May then be worth calling Naim Support

Thanks for that.

Product reports to me that firmware is up to date at version 2.5.3 (3863).

As mentioned above, it has been switched off for 30 minutes and more on several occasions in the recent past and the fault has persisted. But I’ll certainly try that again just in case.

I am assuming you are storing the music on an internal drive? And this isn’t nearly full or in any way suspect?

One thing you could try is a factory reset of the Core. You do this by shutting it down as usual (long press of the power button). Then remove the power. Wait half a minute or so, then holding in the power button, restore the power. Keep holding the button in until you see the light by the front panel USB socket flash and then let go of the power button. Let it finish starting up and it will reappear in your Rooms screen. You will have to select the Music Store again (which you do via manage music on the settings screen, that is behind the gear wheel icon). And set up again any shares or backups you have assigned.

I hope that helps.


Hi David,

Yes. It has a 500GB Samsung SSD. Checking via the desktop shows 355GB still free from a total of 465GB available after operating software. So far as I can tell from a very inexpert layman’s perspective the drive appears to be working perfectly in every way other than the loss of artwork. It is connected by ethernet cables routed via a powered but non-managed switch.

I will try the factory reset routine as you describe. I have not set up any shares or backups on the disc. The Music Share and Downloads Share are presumably there automatically and not affected by a factory reset? Backup is to a portable 1TB Seagate drive. I had always assumed backup was best done to an entirely separate device for security, rather than to the same internal drive?

Just a word about Naim’s naming convention. The place that the Core keeps it’s own rips and you can place downloads is called the Music Store (not Music Share). You can only have one active Music Store at any time. But you can ask the Core to index and serve music from many other locations and these are known as Music Shares. This is an important distinction.

You have to tell the Core which place to use as a Music Store and if it’s a new location, it will ask to format it and when you say yes then it erases everything and sets up the Downloads and Music folders. Rips are saved in Music/MQ. The LQ and HQ folders are not used.

If you do a factory reset, then that doesn’t affect the music on the hard disc or SSD, but you do have to again assign that disc as the Music Store. You don’t agree to format of course. I think you will probably get a message like “Music Store found. Do you want to make this the active Store?” and you answer yes of course.

And yes of course the backup should be to a different drive. A drive connected via the USB socket is one option. Another one is to set up a regular backup routine to a location elsewhere on your network, like a NAS. Anyway whatever you do set up is cancelled by the factory reset, although again the files on the remote share are not deleted.


Thanks for the explanation of the various terminology David. So all my music is stored on the internal Music Store but within folders differentiated Music/MQ and Downloads. When selecting Albums in the app the software assembles these visually as one list by alpha order for ease of browsing and selection.

I have followed your instructions parrot fashion as best I can whilst lacking basic underlying comprehension. First go I released the on button as soon as I saw the light above the front usb socket flash a single time. However, the lights on the front, including the logo, proceeded to flash several more times before settling to a steady state. Assuming I might have released the on button too soon I repeated the procedure but this time releasing the on button only after all flashing of lights anywhere on the front panel had ceased. In each case I waited 60 seconds after pulling the plug before starting up again.

In settings I avoided any invitation to format the disc and was informed that the existing music store was once more configured and active.

Sadly none of the album artwork previously missing has re-appeared. However a further three album artworks previously present have now disappeared. All of these three latest absconders are albums assembled from a selection of tracks which I labelled Bach Organ Works 1/2/3, then copied the front image from a Google image search and embedded this into all tracks on all three albums using Mp3tag.

Exactly so.

You are putting each album into a different folder inside the downloads folder I assume? You do need to do that.

I think you only have to wait for the first flash of the USB socket. But it won’t hurt to wait longer, I believe (it’s a while since I did a factory reset myself and I don’t remember any other lights flashing, but the firmware has no doubt been updated since I did it.)

I think your problem may be that embedding with artwork in downloads with MP3TAG isn’t the best way to add images. I have found it very hit and miss if I rely on the Core finding embedded images.

The way that always works for me and is quite stable is to add the artwork as a file called folder.jpg and put that file in the folder for that album alongside the music files for that album. Obviously the file has to be a jpg and less obviously it mustn’t be too large. If you aim to resize the image to 1000x1000 pixels, then you should be fine.

To put this in context, if you buy a download, whether it’s a flac with embedded artwork or a Wav without artwork, you usually get the artwork as a jpg file as well and usually that’s 2024x2024 or larger and it’s usually called long_name_of_album_with_artistname.jpg or something like that. So rename it folder.jpg, resize it to 1000x1000 and put it in the folder where the music for that album is. You don’t need to undo anything you did with MP3TAG. You can add the new file into the album folder inside the downloads folder without taking the music out. Just cut and paste it directly into the Core with your PC. Your Core should pick it up within a couple of minutes.

The artwork can be anything you like, a photo of your dog, something that came with the album or something you found with Google. It doesn’t matter as long as it’s a jpg, it’s called folder.jpg and it’s smaller than 1000x1000 pixels.

This is explained very briefly in the online manual for the Core, but anyway give it a go and you may find it solves your problem.


I think someone else had an issue recently using the folder.jpg method, and it them worked merging into the music file. I must admit, I do both, plus also create a cover.jpg which some Music Players used to like.

Certainly worth a try

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Yes. As in the example I gave with the Bach organ music above. Three albums, each in a different folder. What is hard to understand is why the method I described has worked for many months but has now started not to work. But I accept that checking each downloaded file in turn to prove that the image is present and recognised by the VLC Player software is not proof that it will be recognised by Naim’s software.

On checking the image file supplied in the Scarlatti download by Presto Music last week I discover that this image is 3000x3000 pixels. This could explain why the method I have used in the past and has always worked until now has not worked in this instance? I will try resizing it to 1000x1000 and embed this smaller version, again using Mp3tag. At least this would prove whether the image size is the crucial difference. The image file is already contained within the album folder as a 560 KB jpg file (but not enclosed within a folder labelled folder.jpg) alongside the files for the 16 music tracks, together with a 3.71 MB PDF containing all the CD liner notes with a full track listing, a sleeve image, an image of Angela Hewitt and a commentary in three languages.

Curiously, when I select the album in the app on the 272 and select the ‘open book’ symbol this brings up a page of album details for a pianist called Milan Langer playing a selection from Petrushka. An artist and repertoire which I do not possess. Truly the Naim software moves in mysterious ways…

Maybe I didn’t explain right.

Inside the downloads folder, you should have a separate folder for each album. Inside that album folder you should have the music files and, I am suggesting, a cover art file called folder.jpg

You don’t put folder.jpg in a folder on its own! And there is no folder called folder.jpg

And each album has its own file called folder.jpg of course

It would be very interesting to know whether the embedded artwork shows up ok if the artwork is 1000x1000 instead of 3000x3000.

Possibly some progress. But first, clarification of terms.

Within the downloads folder each album has its own folder. The album folder has been re-named if necessary before sending it to the Core so as to present in my preferred alpha order. Each album folder contains a set of music files with images embedded via Mp3tag, and in some cases a separate jpg file. It does not contain a further folder labelled folder.jpg containing a jpg file. In some cases it also contains a pdf file with album information.

My wife often accuses me of being a literal thinker. She could well be right. In these exchanges I continue not to understand for sure whether you are describing to me a jpg file as one of a list of files in an album folder, together with music files and a pdf file, or whether you are describing to me an album folder containing music files, a pdf file and an additional folder labelled folder.jpg. From your last clarification I now suspect it to be the former and not the latter?

I have just re-sized 4 images associated with downloaded album files where the image does not display. Two of these will now display in the app, pretty much immediately. The other two do not display even at their newly reduced size.

I assume this could be because although the album folder now contains a suitably sized jpg file the image embedded in each music file tag is still oversize? So I need to delete these from the Core, use Mp3tag to create duplicates which do not have embedded jpgs of any size, then assemble these into new folders accompanied by a jpg file?

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It doesn’t need a further folder called anything!! Just put the artwork file called folder.jpg in the same folder as the music files. It doesn’t matter one way or other about a pdf file of other info. The Core will ignore it anyway.

Regarding whether you have to undo the MP3TAG file edits, you are pushing beyond the boundaries of my experience. I would expect the folder.jpg to predominate. But you could edit one back and tell us what happens.

Example below

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I don’t know why you were confused. This is what my first post said…

Yes. Except the Core doesn’t use cover.jpg files at the present state of firmware, although I do think it used to.

Hi all,

Forgive me for asking on this thread, as I’m “knee height” in all things Core
at the moment. I hope the OP doesn’t mind me asking?
I have backed up all my music onto an external hard drive. I have powered off Uniticore and holding power button whilst switching power to the Core on and starting a fresh install of the Core. So far so good! I now have a formatted SSD drive as mounted on the Core as before. When i browse on my PC, i don’t see MQ/Download folders etc.
Is the folder structure i’m seeing on my PC correct?
I want to edit old rips, before i add to the Core, and i want to ensure the basics are correct?

Just an extra thought. MP3Tag allows you to add the artwork multiple times. When you add artwork, it does NOT remove the one already there, and so you end up with multiple artworks in the same file. So a tip, always remove the artwork first in MP3tag, before adding new artwork. You just right click the artwork in MP3Tag then select remove cover

You have to make your new SSD the Music Store in the Core setup. You will then see the downloads and Music/MQ folders.

What you should then do is restore your backup using the restore function in the app. And then edit anything you want after you have restored it. There is no advantage to doing it before the restore and you might mess the backup up.

No you shouldn’t edit the rips before putting them into the Core. That’s completely wrong. You should only edit rips using the Naim app and they have to be in the Core for you to do that.