The beat . A blog by premiumbeat

June 14, 2010
Royalty Free MusicTutorials

How to convert .wav file into MP3 file with iTunes

When you purchase music from we send you a link to download the music in .wav format and in MP3 format. You are welcome to download both versions if you wish. However some people prefer to do the .wav-to-MP3 conversion themselves because they need a specific level of sound compression or for other reasons. This tutorial shows you how to accomplish that.

You can download iTunes for Mac or PC for free at

For those of you who came in late, iTunes is a media player that allows you to play and organize digital music and video files. But if you thought that iTunes is just a digital music jukebox, think again! It allows you to buy music online, burn CDs, and sync files. Plus, it allows you to convert audio files easily and quickly.

That’s really a useful function for many of you. Consider for example, that you have purchased background music from a royalty free music website such as Now you want to use it on your website, but the .wav file is too big. You need to convert the file to MP3 format. Or, maybe you want to listen to your favorite soundtracks on the long drive to office every day. But the .wav format is not compatible with the music player in your car. So what do you do?

Try converting the .wav files into MP3 file with iTunes. If you don’t know how, just follow the simple step-by-step instructions given below and you are on track.

  1. Launch iTunes.
  2. To open iTunes Preferences.
    •  Windows: On the Edit menu, click Preferences.
    •  Mac: From the iTunes menu, choose Preferences. UPDATE: If you are using iTunes 8 or iTunes 9 open PREFERENCES, it will be automatically under the GENERAL tab and go directly to IMPORT SETTINGS (You do not have to select Advanced) .
    •  In the drop down list next to Import Using, select MP3 Encoder.
  3. Select one of the three preferences from the drop down list next to Setting, to specify a quality preference. Your options are:
    •  Good Quality (128 kbps)
    •  High Quality (160 kbps)
    •  Higher Quality (192 kbps)
  4. For web usage, you may need more compression. In Setting, choose Custom and then choose between 24 kpbs and 128 kbps according to the quality you want. 64 kpbs and 128 kbps are often used by web designers. (Tip: Always use the Stereo mode for music).
  5. Click OK to close that window.
  6. Click OK again to close the Preferences window.
  7. Select one or more .wav files from your music library.
  8. Open the Advanced tab on top of your screen , choose Create MP3 Version.

The conversion time will vary depending on the number of files, the type of conversion, and the speed of your computer.

You will hear a beep sound when iTunes completes converting your files. The new MP3 music file will be automatically generated and will be placed right under the original file in the music library (Under LIBRARY select Music).

Click here to sign up for our FREE newsletter!

This text may be copied in its totality and published on-line or otherwise but cannot be modified without permission.

Contact us at [email protected]

Need Royalty Free Tracks?

Browse our Exclusive Music Library

Related Posts:

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Eric

    Thank you for the article! I used to use MediaConverter123 for audio and video conversion, it worked well.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) KC

    It was EZ and worked perfectly! Thanks for making it quick and painless.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) PB

    The settings seem to be configured differently than this in iTunes 9.2. Do you know what the updated instructions would be?

    • Gilles

      I just checked with iTunes 9.2.1 and what is described in the tutorial still holds. I re-positioned some of the text and hopefully it has made it clearer.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Alex

    Ah… I’m on a Mac, and I have no idea what you’re talking about when you say “under GENERAL”. I got “ITUNES”, “FILE”, “EDIT”,”VIEW”,”CONTROLS”, “STORE,”ADVANCED”, “WINDOW,” and “HELP.” :c I dunno which to find anything under. I tried advanced, but it doesn’t have the options described.

    Help? Please and thank you.

    • Gilles

      Yes I am on a MAC too! As it is mentioned you need to go under the iTunes menu and open “preferences” – that is where all these tabs are available.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Jerry

    I also have the same problem on MAC. No “General – Importing – Burning” tabs under Advanced preferences. Does anyone know the solution?

    • Gilles

      Hi Jerry – I re-worded the text and hopefully it is clearer now. As soon as you open the Preferences panel you have the Importing option on your lower right side. From there you just follow instructions.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Randy

    Couldn’t get it to work. Is seemed to only convert some of the files selected. Is there some other conversion program that I can download.

    • Gilles

      Hmmm.. I don’t know why it would do that. Maybe these files are protected somehow. A good program if you work on a Mac is Sound Studio at I believe you can get a free trial.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Deanne

    I just downloaded itunes 10.0 and copied a cd in the wave format. I would like to also save same cd without resaving it in a mp3 format as I have a android phone and generation 1 ipod.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) John

    Thanks so much, this is the first online tutorial that has showed me exactly what to do step by step and it worked like a charm.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Anne

    Does anyone know whether or not you can use iTunes to merge two mp3 files into one? If so, can you post how it is done? Thank-you.

  • COD

    Great! Thanks for this article it worked for me as well, with ease!

  • David

    This seems to only work if you are importing wav files from a disc. Then you can import in different formats.
    I can’t seem to find a way to transform a wav file in Itunes to a MP3 file which is what I thought you were teaching us. On most current itunes there doesn’t seem to be a way to simply select a wav file and transform it. Do I have to reload the original disc and do it from there? That doesn’t seem to be ideal.

    • Gilles

      No no it is not only when you import from a CD. Although it can do that too.
      Once you have set up your importing settings in the iTunes preference panel, you close everything and go to your music library – you then select any .wav file and go to the top menu –> Advanced —> Create MP3 version. The new file in MP3 format will be right below the original one in your library.

      I just checked with the latest version and it works fine.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) david

    Gilles, that is the problem. Its not obvious. If you want to transform a file from wave to MP3, you have to pretend that you are changing how a file is imported from a cd. (even though you aren’t). Tell it you want to import the file in MP3. Then go to advanced (not under preferences, but just up on top of iTunes) and amazingly, you will now see an option that wasn’t there before. It will simply say wav to mp3. Select the track you want to transform. It doesn’t do it within your playlist but does put it right under the wav file in your general library. You can then move it to a playlist that is mp3.
    It is only obvious after you do it. Because you have to start doing something you don’t want to do to do it. That is hardly obvious. d

  • http://YourSite(Optional) anne

    Thank you thank you thank you!!!! I have been having mysterious issues burning cds lately, and this advice has preserved my sanity! For some reason my itunes has decided it only likes burning cds in mp3 format. (get all kinds of errors like “device failed to respond”, or media errors if I try anything else) This is a great way for me to continue to enjoy music that was not originally imported in mp3 format. Thank you!

  • http://YourSite(Optional) George

    Can anyone explain converting from AAC (as purchased at iTunes Store) to MP3. The conversion process causes the “chime” but a second version of an audio track fails to appear below the original.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Derek

    thanks for the help- worked perfectly!

  • Boo

    Thanks this was exactly what I needed and worked like a charm =)

  • http://YourSite(Optional) veeah

    thanks a lot!! it was a big help! :D

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Michael Crandell

    Thank you so much for the help! very helpful for those of us who are tech challenged. Thanks again.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Vorbis

    It worked for me just as described on a PC using the latest update of iTunes. I see the wave file and the mp3 file in my iTunes library. BUT NOW WHAT? I want to email the mp3 file to some one. Where did iTunes store the mp3 file? Thanks in advance.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Vorbis

    Found it:
    C:\Users\\Music\iTunes\iTunes Media\Music\Unknown Artist\Unknown Album>

  • DJ CK

    I followed the steps to convert a .wav file into an mp3 file but when I went to burn that playlist, it still rejected it saying that it is not in MP3 format? Not sure why but if anyone has any suggestion that’d be great because the converting process was made easy by this site, thanks.

  • Pingback: When to use .WAV files – when to use MP3 files? 
 What is the difference between the two formats? | - Royalty Free Music Library Blog

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Therese

    YAY thank you so much for this information!!

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Lee

    I don’t understand how any of you are converting these WAV files to MP3 when iTunes doesn’t even recognise WAV. I can’t even get it to view the files to convert them to MP3 in the first instance. Gilles your instructions only work for converting from a CD not a data file. Unless there’s an update in iTunes thats stopped this conversion. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) haruu


  • http://YourSite(Optional) Rebecca

    Thank you, Gilles. I thought your directions were brilliant. I use an iPod gadget to record all my lectures (when I remember) but the WAV files are huge; now I can back them up much more easily.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) mc

    This makes listening to your music tracks convenient. I’ve also learned another way of converting music files to MP3, try this

  • http://YourSite(Optional) mc

    Thanks for the help. There are numerous sites that offer this. I’ve found another way of converting mp3 files. Try this

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Suzy

    Thanks – Very simple and easy instructions.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) carla

    Hey! this is brilliant! a very useful discovery!

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Hoge

    thanks for sharing. if there’s a video tutorial, then would be much better. i currently use Video Sharer.
    but seems itunes is also good.

  • Stevio

    Sweet…thanks…that helped.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) John

    A massive thank you I have been pulling my hair out but now I can save my music from live lite 7 software as wave and change it into mp3 and at last listen to it on the hi fi I could kiss you !!!!!!!!!!!

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Ranx

    Excellent tip, thank you.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Mudcannon

    Very Nice Tips! Thank you!!

  • http://YourSite(Optional) keem

    thx this was great i really needed to know!

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Dendo

    Brillo advice, worked a treat first time and I imported on a memstick from one computer to another.
    Thanks very much

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Lily

    this is cool stuff to convert wav to mp3 for free, however, if you have protected wma files, you can check this guide to convert drm wma to mp3

  • http://YourSite(Optional) OOlf

    This doesn’t work for me. I’m sure the convert to MP3 probably works but I can’t get the WAV files into itunes, they just refuse to go in there!

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Liz

    I too am having an issue with getting the wav files into itunes in the first place in order to convert them. Any ideas as to why this is the case and how to overcome it would be much appriciated!

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Ulices

    Hey, thanks so much for the info on how to convert. :) You don’t have any idea how happy I am. This is my final step :) Peace

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Laurie

    I love you, this blog info saved my life today for a memorial video I am creating using Animoto, which only uses mp3 files

  • http://YourSite(Optional) suni

    I am very much impressive .Accept my hearty congratulations. No one is capable to understand the hidden mechanism with out this post. Thank you.

    • s

      u haw to be stupied to not understan—

      • Kate Marsden

        Switch is the program i just picked up…and its free…works great

        • Vanson

          XLD (X Lossless Decoder) available at will allow conversion of the lossless file to AIFF which is a standard
          uncompressed file that iTunes understands, and can then convert to Apple
          Lossless or AAC if desired, or burned to CD without running through the
          mp3 converter

          • Lauram

            I think QuickTime may do some help.

        • Charls

          Just upgraded to Lion and normally Switch has always worked for me, but I
          typically only convert flac. I tried using switch today on some WMA
          files and it gave me an error saying that mp3el was not able to open as
          power pc apps are no longer supported. ?

      • Fluid Boy


    • Edvince

      Switch is the program i just picked up…and its free…works great

      • Jimmer

        I downloaded “switch” but after they convert to mp3, they still won’t play. Please help me by adding a little more information.


        (Windows XP)

  • http://YourSite(Optional) octatonic

    Thanks for the clear and concise instructions. So much clearer than using the “help” menu on iTunes (no surprise there!)

  • http://YourSite(Optional) dk1

    thanks a mill!

  • lauraine 2012

    Thanks for sharing your info. I really appreciate your efforts and I will be waiting for your further write ups thanks once again.
    html5 converter

  • Antaeus Noir

    I can only echo the thanks of everyone here. I had wanted to upload a version of one of my songs to a promotion website, and was thinking that i’d have to download one of those dodgy programs which ends up installing the Babylon toolbar or whatever…;-). You are an absolute life-saver, and I’ll check whether I can subscribe to your site somewhere. All the best.

    • Danny Greer

      Thanks for the positive feedback, Antaeus! :)

  • Matt Williams

    You literally just saved me about 7 hours of work, thank you!!

    • Danny Greer

      Thanks Matt!  We do what we can to help! :)

  • fgfdgdfxcvdf

    where the heck is the create mp3 version button!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • diehfbenkdcijhnd

       It’s labeled as “Create AAC Version” if you don’t change the preferences; so be sure to change that! I had trouble with this at first, too

    • Geoffgillette

       I agree.  there is no create mp3 version option.  Great instructions!

    • Devid

      Old thread, but still very useful. I too looked for a converter for Mac
      for ages and stumbled across your forum. Now you can use an app called mp3 converter for mac

      • Rose

        It costs a bit, but u can try it out free first to see if it works for what

        you need it for. Plz click the link below to get more info:

  • happyboybaby


    I just find a step by step guide on how to compress audio WAV,
    MP3, FLAC, WMA, M4A, AIFF, PCM, OGG, etc. to smaller file size with high
    audio quality at
    why not have a free try, hope it helps

  • Happy

    Just google search Step by Step Guide on  How to Compress Audio WAV, MP3, FLAC, WMA, M4A, AIFF, PCM and etc?

    you will find a step by step guide on how to compress audio WAV, MP3, FLAC,
    WMA, M4A, AIFF, PCM, OGG, etc. to smaller file size with high audio

  • bow


  • 80zHD


  • Elaine Puma

    ***Thank you so very much!***

  • Emily

    Thanks :)

  • Diana Sz

    Thanks a bunch!!

  • Silver

    I’ll be of zero help with a program, I’m more curious why you want to convert something to WMA if you’re using a Mac….

  • Lauren Raison D’être

    It’s a bit poop they don’t let you convert to 320kbps :( I have a wav file I’d like to convert – seems a shame to loose a lot of the good quality.

  • Cord Cedeno

    Thank you so much i love YOU!!!!!

  • Pingback: How do I convert mps to wav? | Music Confirmation

  • pedrogawdin

    i know a step by step guide on how to compress and convert wav to mp3, aiff, flac, aac, wma, and etc at

  • pedrogawdin

    I know a software called iDealshare VideoGo which can easily compress
    WAV, AIFF, AU, APE, MP3, PCM, DTS, Apple Lossless, RA, WMA, AAC, AC3,
    FLAC, OGG, CAF, and etc.

Become a better editor!