Hi Gang – I still see this question being asked in a lot of music and audiophile forums I visit, so I wanted to make a reference post about it here.  Hope you find this breakdown straightforward and please link to it if you think it will be helpful to others!

Converting songs from one format to another – either to make them more compatible with your audio library or to make them available on all of your playback hardware – is a relatively simple and straightforward process these days (at least compared to how things were a few years ago).


At the same time, it’s not quite as intuitive as simply dragging an audio file, dropping it in a piece of software like iTunes, and then watching as the magic of technology takes over.


Thankfully, with the step by step tips highlighted below, you’re going to be able to hit the ground running with this conversion process from here on out. You’ll be able to throw all of your audio files into a single library, converting one file to another for more seamless integration, all without the headache and hassle that a lot of people associate with this kind of project.


Check out the insider information below for step by step info to convert audio files in iTunes!


Converting songs to other formats from right inside of iTunes


iTunes is a pretty amazing piece of software and probably the most commonly used music management tool on the planet.  Simple, straightforward, and elegant to use – as well as beautifully designed (like most things from Apple) – once you master the process with iTunes as your conversion tool it becomes second nature rather quickly.


There’s just one hurdle that needs to be cleared before you dive in. You need to make sure your music doesn’t contain ANY DRM before you get started. iTunes makes it easy to convert DRM free files from one type to another, but anything with DRM will cause the conversion to fail right away.


As long as you have no DRM, however, you’re good to go – and here’s how to get the job done in just a couple of minutes.


First you’ll want to select the audio format you want your files to be converted into to begin with. Click the EDIT option (or PREFERENCES on a Mac), slide into the ADVANCED tab, and then go to IMPORTING. From there, you’ll want change the dropdown menu to the file type you’re looking for (MP3, for example), and then click the OK button to save the new formats going forward.


From there you’ll want to simply drag and drop music into your iTunes library and it will become available to convert. Highlight the songs you’d like to convert, right click, select CONVERT SELECTION TO MP3, and then sit back while the software handles the heavy lifting!


The process should take about 30 seconds per song to knock out (though it may take longer when converting from certain file formats, like AAC or FLAC) and once you set things up properly you’re off to the races. It really doesn’t get much easier than this!


So all things considered iTunes is a great platform for organizing all your music, podcasts and more.  The days of having to store your library across multiple sites and devices (with passwords and logins to remember) are officially over – start converting now!