How to Export Music As an MP3

Free and commercial audio software allows you to export your audio as an MP3 file. The MP3 format provides a high-quality audio file capable of transferring quickly across the Internet. While the audio quality of an MP3 is not as high as that of a WAV or uncompressed audio format, it is still a very popular and is commonly used for transferring audio. There are several steps to convert your own audio to MP3. One caveat to keep in mind is the use of high bit rate audio files. Higher bit rates produce higher quality files, but also require additional space.

Step 1 Download and install the free audio editor Audacity, if you do not own a commercial program. If you do own a commercial program, skip to step 4.

Step 2 Download the LAME audio encoder to install in Audacity.

Step 3 Click the Lame audio encoder file twice to install Lame for Audacity.

Step 4 Import or drag the audio file you would like to convert into the audio editing application.

Step 5 Select the “Export,” “Export Audio” or “Bounce to Audio” option in the “File” menu, depending on which application you are using.

Step 6 Open the “Export” options selection in the “Save As” dialog box. Select MP3 as your audio format. Identify and select any additional options you would like and save your MP3 file by pressing “OK.”

Additional options typically include bit rate and options between variable and constant. Variable bit rate will analyze the audio file to find areas where bit rate may be lowered. This will decrease the size of the file without sacrificing quality.

Poor bit rates include anything under 192 kbps. It is best to avoid these unless the audio file is a lecture or speaking voice. Avoid going much lower than 64 kbps for speakers. Good bit rates include anything from 192 kbps to 256 kbps. Often there is a negligible size increase between 192 and 256 kpbs so it usually makes sense to use the higher format. Excellent bit rates, and the highest usually available, top out at 320 kbps. This is extremely high quality and comes close to CD quality.


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