I've been trying to find a good translation for a playlist that you create for yourself (like on itunes or Youtube), but I haven't been able to find one.

Does anyone have any suggestions?

2 Answers 2


播放列表 and 歌单 are both okay.

It's been translated as 播放列表 for long because of the early version of Microsoft Windows Media Player and other old players. You can tell that 播放列表 is directly translated because “play“ means 播放 and “list“ means 列表。

In 歌单, 单 is equal to 列表, and 歌 means the music that you wanna listen to. While in Chinese, 歌 mostly refers to the music with lyrics and that might be too narrow in meaning for there mignt be classical music without lyrics in your playlist. That's why I prefer 播放列表 to 歌单. The former has the more exact meaning.

Nowadays the people who listen to the music without lyrics are much less than people who listen to 歌, so 歌单 is also widely accepted and used by the public and sometimes replaces 播放列表. What's more, the word 歌单 is much shorter than 播放列表. I guess that also makes it more popular.

  • 3
    To add one thing, before there were computers, the word 播放列表 did not exist but 歌单 was used to refer to the program sheet for song performances and/or the "menu" in karaoke places.
    – NS.X.
    Dec 15, 2014 at 17:40
  • @NS.X. You're right. I overlooked the early karaoke time.
    – Minnie
    Dec 17, 2014 at 11:50
  • Can 歌单 be used to refer to a playlist of non-music content? Feb 18, 2016 at 4:55

It is 播放列表 in Chinese, or you can use 歌单.

  • 1
    歌单 is a good answer. It stands for "歌曲清单"
    – nickluchen
    Oct 16, 2014 at 12:53

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