How to Convert M4A to MP3 in Easy Steps

Convert M4A To MP3

How to Convert M4A to MP3 in Easy Steps

Key Points:
  • An MP3 is a technique for condensing a sound sequence into a little file to facilitate digital transmission and storage.
  • Apple’s response to MP3s was M4A (MPEG-4 Part 14) files. This audio format, which is frequently viewed as the MP3’s replacement, found its real home with the launch of the iTunes Store.
  • With iTunes, you can convert music in M4A format to MP3 while maintaining the original.

The best way to convert M4A files to MP3 is by using a dedicated tool. Several apps available can help you convert M4A files to MP3.

If you have the apps installed on your device, then all you need to do is click on them and select the file from your phone’s gallery. You can also download the app and install it manually if you want to use it for another file type.

Once done, follow the instructions given by the app, and it will take care of everything else for you. If not, there are some other methods as well which can help you easily convert M4A files to MP3.

This post will demonstrate the top three ways of Converting M4A to MP3 in Easy Steps, along with a thorough evaluation.

What Does MP3 Stand For?

An MP3 is a technique for condensing a sound sequence into a little file to facilitate digital transmission and storage.

It offers beautiful sound quality with uncompressed audio codecs like WAV and AIFF, at the expense of large file size. People rapidly recognized that transferring uncompressed files via dial-up connections was impractical—and frequently impossible—after the internet file-sharing craze of the mid-1990s. MP3s (MPEG-2 Audio Layer III) came to be as a result.

A three-minute song would typically take up 30MB in WAV or AIFF format, but when converted to MP3, it would only occupy about 3MB. Due to its powerful compression algorithms, MP3 quickly established itself as a standard of the internet era and has continued to hold this position to this day. However, sound quality suffered as a result of the reduced file size.

Different compression formats re-encode the data using various techniques in order to conserve space. However, losing some data while saving space is part of the process. Since most people cannot hear the intricacies in extremely high frequencies, high frequencies are typically the first to get lost. The more frequencies and subtitles that are lost in your audio, the poorer the encoding quality tend to be.

Having stated that, newer compression algorithms support greater bitrates, allowing them to achieve high compression ratios with little audible degradation in audio quality. Although, according to the general rule of thumb, smaller bitrates equal smaller file sizes. Bitrate is the amount of data that transmit per second of audio content. Keep your bitrate above 128Kbps if you want to preserve high quality while also utilizing MP3s’ ease of sharing with friends and family.

What Does M4A Stand For?

Apple’s response to MP3s was M4A (MPEG-4 Part 14) files. This audio format, which is frequently viewed as the MP3’s replacement, found its real home with the launch of the iTunes Store, where it quickly established itself as the default format for all music purchases made through the online music retailer.

For all audio featured in apps published on the Mac and iOS App Stores, as well as in Nintendo and PlayStation products, it is still the recommended format. The M4A audio format is gradually taking over as the preferred audio format for compressed audio files as more and more developers add support for it.

The lossy Advanced Audio Coding (AAC) codec, which may deliver the same bitrates as MP3s while achieving tighter compression, is used to create M4A files. As a result, files are lower and the audio quality is higher. It’s like a golden unicorn, which explains why it’s become such a well-liked format for brief audio transmissions.

Although numerous audio players have the ability to play back M4A files across a variety of systems, the audio format is still unable to compete with MP3’s cross-platform acceptance, which is why MP3s continue to rule the world.

Opening An M4A File

Several audio players, such as Adobe Audition (cross-platform), VideoLAN VLC media player, Microsoft Groove Music (Windows), Apple Music (MacOS), Microsoft Windows Media Player (Windows), and others can play M4A files (multiplatform).

Here is a brief video that shows how to convert M4A to MP3 in VLC media player:

How To Convert M4A To MP3 In Easy Steps

You’ll discover that changing an M4A file into an MP3 file is a typical procedure while editing videos. It might appear difficult at first, but if you use a program like Adobe Media Encoder and follow these straightforward steps, converting M4A files is simple:

  1. In the top left corner of the screen, click File or tap Plus.
  2. Select the file you want to add, and then do it.
  3. Pick a custom configuration or an export preset.
  4. To find the ultimate location of your file, click on the output file.
  5. To start the conversion, click Start.

1. M4A To MP3 Conversion Using iTunes

With iTunes, you can convert the music in M4A format to MP3 while maintaining the original.

Step 1: Launch iTunes and import the M4A file. To access “Add Folder to Library,” and then you click on the “File button.” After choosing the folder to store the M4A files, click the “Open” button to add the M4A files to iTunes.


Step 2: Modify your preference. Then click Import Settings after selecting Edit > Preferences. Select “MP3 Encoder” from the “Import Using” bucket inside the second window. Once you’ve finished, click “OK” in any of the open windows to save your changes.


Step 3: Start the conversion. The “Library” list on iTunes’ left side should have “Music” highlighted. Select the album containing the M4A songs you want to convert. After that, the songs will be listed. Click the “Advanced” menu after selecting each M4A file you’re converting. To save the MP3 audio files in the iTunes folder on your computer, select “Create MP3 Version.”

The best free method to convert M4A to MP3 is this method. Making this conversion won’t require you to set up any additional software on your computer. It is also simple to use.


2. Using The Online Free Converter To Convert M4A To MP3

If you don’t like iTunes, there are other options. M4A files are less constrained because they are not DRM-protected. Users can convert M4A to MP3 using free multi-format web converters like Media-Convert, Zamzar, Media.io, and others. Let’s use Zamzar as an illustration.


  • Go to Zamzar.com and add M4A files as step one. To import M4A files, select “Choose Files…” in the toolbar.
  • From the list of “Music Formats,” pick “MP3”.
  • To receive the converted file, enter your email address.
  • Select “Convert” from the menu. This indicates that you have read and agree to their terms, which you should do first.

The converter is easy to use online. You don’t need to be an expert computer user to do the conversion. You must undoubtedly have internet access. Like many other online converters, Zamzar has a 100MB file size restriction. Therefore, it is not a wise choice if you wish to convert several M4A files in a batch.

3. Using Any Desktop Audio Converter Free To Convert M4A To MP3

Downloading a desktop-based tool to convert M4A to MP3 files is the third option. Although, we suggest the fully free audio conversion program.

  • Run the application and choose the audio files from your hard drive by clicking the “Add Videos” button.
  • Click “Output Profile” and select MP3 from the Audio Files icon as the output format.
  • To instantly convert newly imported or selected files to MP3 format, just click the “Convert” button. After the conversion, open the output folder by clicking the “Open Folder” button at the program’s bottom.

4. iTunes (extension) M4A Music To MP3 Conversion

iTunes M4A files are more restricted than M4A files and can only be opened in iTunes. NoteBurner iTunes Audio Converter is the best option if you need to convert such files to MP3 format.

In order to convert Apple Music files, audiobooks, and M4P audio to unprotected MP3, M4A, etc., users can utilize NoteBurner iTunes Audio Converter. This converter combines the M4P converter, the audiobook converter, and the Apple Music converter.

  • Step 1: Start the Windows version of the iTunes Audio Converter. iTunes will launch by itself. You will notice iTunes Audio Converter’s user-friendly interface.
  • Step 2: Select “+ Add,” and a pop-up window displaying every song in your iTunes library will appear. Apple Music files, audiobooks, and M4A audio can all be added at any time.
  • Step 3: On the main interface, click the “Setting” button. A pop-up box will appear, allowing you to select the output route and audio format. The output audio will be saved in the default folder if the output path is left unmodified.
  • Step 4: Click the “Convert” button to begin converting after customizing is complete. Please deselect this music before converting if you don’t want it to be converted. Click “Converted” to access the output audio after conversion.


Converting an M4A file to an MP3 file has never been easier, the steps outlined in this article will help you convert your file. It is important to follow these steps carefully, in other to get the required results. We hope this article helps.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How can you convert M4A files using iTunes?

You can use the “Auto Add to iTunes” folder inside your iTunes Media folder. Click to drag any file of your choice into this folder. Begin by doing a few at once. If the files are compatible, they get integrated into your iTunes library. If iTunes is open, this will occur in a matter of seconds.

How can I use Windows Media Player to convert M4A to MP3?

Choose Options by clicking the Organize tab in the upper left corner.

You can specify where you wish to save the music by selecting the Rip Music tab, clicking the Change tab, and selecting MP3 as the format.

Why can't I convert the songs on my iTunes library to MP3?

Although the music on Apple Music is in the AAC format, you cannot convert them to MP3 because of the unique DRM that protects them. The DRM confirms that your Apple Music subscription is active.

What is an M4A file extension?

This is an audio file saved in a particular format designated as MPEG-4. This file type is usually encoded using advanced audio coding (ACC). It is simply an audio file.

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