Converting Audio and Video With iTunes

You have to ability to convert audio files to a variety of formats from iTunes. The conversion leaves a duplicate in your iTunes library, but you can also locate the file. It can be useful, for instance, to convert AAC files to MP3 if you need to play them back in players that only support MP3. You can also convert video to formats supported by iOS devices and Apple TV.
Video Transcript / Captions
Closed captioning for this video is available on YouTube: Converting Audio and Video With iTunes.

Hi, this is Gary with Let's look at converting audio and video files using iTunes.

I'm using iTunes version 11 and I'm going to show you how you can use iTunes to convert music and also video files.

So if you look in your music library and you select a song and you control click on it you will see a large contextual list here of commands. One of the things you will see is something like Create AAC Version or MP3 Version. This will create a new version of the file you have selected in that file format.

The way you set the file format is you go to iTunes Preferences under General and you get Import Settings and it is set to AAC. Now let's say I want to convert some music to MP3 files. Change it to MP3 and I can further customize the settings. Then when I control click on a file you will see that has Create MP3 Version.

So let's try that. Let's go and create a MP3 version and see what happens. What will happen here is I will end up with two versions of the same song. You can see one was just added and this one is much older. If I go and select Control click on it again and say Show in Finder I will find this one here as .MP3 and if I select this one and say Show in Finder I will see that is in a different location here. They may actually be in the same location depending upon how you have the music arranged.

I have my original one and the new version there and you can see they are slightly different sizes. I can set to compress more if this was an AAC song. This would then be a MP3 which could then be very useful if say I had to transfer them to a CD, an MP3 CD, or use them on a USB stick on a device that only read MP3 files.

In addition to that if you select a song you can also go to File and then Create New Version. You will have the same command there that you will see with a contextual menu.

Now let's go to Movies. In here I've got some of my own videos that I have put in here. I can select one and also I can go to File, it is on the Contextual Menu but you can go to File and Create New Version and it gives you two options. Create a version for the small screen iOS devices, iPod or iPhone, or Create for the larger devices like the iPad or Apple TV. Either one will not only create a version that is sized to fit those screens but will also do it in the same type of format that is required by those devices.

If you want to think about all these devices as they only read certain file compression formats. This really helps saves battery and processing power if it doesn't have to know hundreds or thousands different types of video formats but only certain ones that work really well with low powered mobile devices.

So by converting your videos by using iTunes it will also create a second version here, let's do that for this one, and then once it is done I will have two versions of the same file. I could delete the first or save them both but only the new one will be compatible with devices like the iPod and iPhone. Then when I go to sync I'll just have the option to just sync with that one which is all I want. Just to be able to sync that exact one.

Now I should also add that for video you can also use QuickTime Player to do the conversion. I can open a video here in QuickTime Player. As long as you can open it and play it here you should be able to export it and then you will see the ability to do it for devices and it will actually show you the different devices you can export to and notice how it doesn't even give me this one here. One of the reasons for that is that the video isn't a high enough resolution to need to go to this size. So going here is exactly what I want. I get some nice information here. It will tell me the size before I do the export.

Comments: 2 Responses to “Converting Audio and Video With iTunes”

    Richard Rowe
    5 years ago

    I have change from Windows to Mac ,I would like to say thanks a lot and keep up the good work.

    5 years ago

    Great video, but you didn’t include how to rip audio from videos using iTunes.

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