How to Convert M4A to MP3: The Complete Guide

If you have a lot of M4A files and want to convert them to MP3 for easier playback, this guide is for you. M4A is a file format that is used by Apple products, while MP3 is the most common format for audio files. In this guide, we will show you how to convert M4A files to MP3 using different methods.

But before we get there, let's take a quick look at what each of the audio file formats is, and in which cases they are used.

What is M4A?

M4A is a file extension for an audio file encoded with advanced audio coding (AAC) which is a lossy compression. The M4A format was generally intended as the successor to MP3, which had not been originally designed for audio only but was layer III in MPEG 1 or 2 video files. M4A stands for MPEG 4 Audio. M4A files are a popular type of audio as they can provide good quality audio in relatively small file sizes.

Why choose M4A over MP3?

M4A offers a better sound quality than MP3 while keeping the file size small. M4A files are often less than half the size of an MP3 and offer digital rights management (DRM) protection, a feature that prevents unauthorized duplication or sharing of M4A-encoded audio files.

What is MP3?

MP3 stands for MPEG-1 Audio Layer 3 and is a digital audio encoding format. It compresses sound files by removing some of the data that humans cannot hear, reducing the file size without compromising on quality. The Mp3 format was created by an organization called Moving Pictures Experts Group (MPEG), and is widely used for audio streaming on the internet.

Why Convert M4A to MP3?

M4A files can only be played on certain devices, while Mp3 files are supported by almost any device or software. Converting M4A to Mp3 makes it easier to share music with friends, transfer songs to different devices, and play M4A files without needing additional software or codecs.

How to Convert M4A to MP3 Online

The best way to convert M4A to MP3 is by using an online converter. Desktop converters are often difficult to use and can be confusing for those not familiar with the process. Online converters are easy to use and typically have a user-friendly interface.

Additionally, online converters offer a wider range of file conversion options than desktop converters. This is because desktop converters typically only convert files that are stored on the computer, while online converters can access a wider range of files stored on different servers around the internet.

Online converters also offer quick and easy conversions without the need to install any software or codecs. Desktop converters require both time and effort to download and install before they can be used.

So, if you want to convert M4A to MP3 quickly and easily, here's how to do it.

The Best Online M4A to MP3 Converter: Podcastle

Being fast, free and online, Podcastle is one of the easiest tools you can use to convert just about any audio file format into MP3. Here's all you need to do:

1) Go to Podcastle's online M4A to MP3 converter
2) Upload your M4A file
3) Export your MP3 file in seconds!

Yes, that's pretty much it. And if you're looking to make some quick, simple edits, our free Audio Editor can EQ, trim, split, fade, and also change the speed of your audio in just a few clicks. You can then export your file in any format you want.

How to Convert M4A to MP3 on Mac

There are a lot of Mac-based M4A to MP3 converters out there, but if we had to pick, we'd probably go for the following choices.

Convert M4A to MP3 with iTunes

iTunes is one of the simplest ways you could change M4A to MP3 natively on Mac. This is because Apple Music has used M4A format for many years, and so they've included an easy method for Mac users to convert any purchases into MP3. All you need to do is:

  1. Launch Apple Music on your device.
  2. Selecting "Music" from the menu bar, then choose "Settings."
  3. From the Settings window, go to the "Files" tab and click on the "Import Settings" option.
  4. Locate the dropdown menu next to "Import Using" and select the desired encoding format to which you want to convert your songs.
  5. Confirm your choice by clicking "OK."
  6. Find the songs in your music library that you want to convert to the new format.
  7. Go to the "File" menu and choose "Convert," followed by "Create [format] Version," where [format] represents the format you selected earlier.

Once this process is complete, you're all done! The newly converted song files will appear in your library alongside the original versions.

Convert M4A to MP3 Using VLC Media Player

VLC Media Player is a well-known third-party app used to handle any audio and video format imaginable. So if you want to convert M4A to MP3 with VLC, here's how:

  1. Open VLC  and find the "Media" option in the top-left corner. Select "Convert/Save" from the dropdown menu.
  2. A new dialog box will appear. Click the "Add" button and navigate to the M4A file you wish to convert.
  3. Select the file and click "Open," then click the "Convert/Save" button at the very bottom.
  4. In the list of available formats, select the MP3 option.
  5. Next, click on the "Browse" button, choose your destination folder, change the file extension to MP3 and click "Save".
  6. Once everything's done, you can click the "Start" button and begin the conversion!

How to Convert M4A to MP3 on Windows

For Windows, you can download iTunes and VLC Media Player and follow the same steps as above. But we'd say the simplest way to convert M4A to MP3 is with Windows Media Player. And the best part is that it's completely free.

Here is the full guide on how to turn your M4A files into MP3 with Windows Media Player:

1. Launch the program, and click on the Library tab at the top of the window.
2. Choose the Show Menu Bar in the Layout.
3. Select M4A files you want to convert
4. To save it, go to File > Save as
5. Choose the destination of your MP3 file, and that's it!

Final Thoughts

M4A and MP3 files can be easily converted with the right M4A to Mp3 converter. Both desktop and online M4A to Mp3 converters offer a quick and easy way to convert M4A audio files into Mp3 format.

Still, if you want the fastest, most reliable M4A to Mp3 conversion, we suggest you use Podcastle's M4A to Mp3 converter. It's fast, free, and online. No downloads or installations required.

We hope this article has been helpful in guiding you through the M4A to Mp3 conversion process. So what are you waiting for? Go ahead and start converting M4A to MP3 now!

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