How can I convert albums to mp3s?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by jayb2000, Sep 11, 2003.

  1. jayb2000 macrumors 6502a


    Apr 18, 2003
    RI -> CA -> ME
    I have a good turntable and probably 50-60 albums I would like to convert to digital so I can put them in iTunes and then my iPod.
    If I can get it to work, my parents have a few hundred that I would like to be able to burn to CD for them.

    Anyone done this? What software would be good for OS X to do this? I have a 400mhz slot loading iMac, so not sure how good the sound card is.
    I don't need super-audiophille quality, I just would like to be able to listen to my old albums.

    I found this website:

    and it had some good ideas, but it was Windows and I am trying not to use Windows unless I have to (work).

    I don't mind buying some software, but I am not looking to spend more than $100 or so.

    Any help is appreciated.
  2. Edot macrumors 6502

    Jan 29, 2002

    Toast 5 and 6 do this while removing crackles and help improve quality. The actual application is CD Spin Doctor(2), but it is bundled with Toast. There are probably other, but I do not know what they are:D
  3. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020


    Jul 6, 2003
    Los Angeles
    First you have to plug the turntable into the iMac--and I don't think they have an audio-in. Griffin makes something called iMic that will take a 1/8" jack and plug into a USB port. It works okay but I tend to get clicks on my recordings with it. To record you have a few options. I use Bias Peak but there's Audacity, Sound Studio, and countless other programs that will do it. Clicks and pops can be edited out after, and it's easier with some programs than others--so try a few. You can also eq and otherwise clean up the recording. Once you're happy with it, save it as an aiff and import it to iTunes--then you can do whatever you want to with it.
  4. zimv20 macrumors 601


    Jul 18, 2002
    Re: How can I convert albums to mp3s?

    you're going to have to buy some hardware. $100 isn't much, and for analog->digital converters, you get what you pay for.

    good ones start around $800.
  5. Anna macrumors regular

    May 25, 2003
    Just use the iMic if you dont have audio in, if you do, you just need a mini jack to mini jack connection. Use soundstudio to record the trax. Then you can convert from the wav file to MP3 or AAC.

    Good luck
  6. jayb2000 thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Apr 18, 2003
    RI -> CA -> ME
    Re: LP's

    That sounds like what I was looking for.
    I have an cable that should plug into the iMac's microphone port.

    Wouldn't that do it?

    Thanks for the help so far.

    Slightly related, since the iMac does not have a burner, anyone particularly happy6 (or unhappy) with external CD/DVD burners?
  7. tomf87 macrumors 65816


    Sep 10, 2003
    Re: Re: LP's

    I don't think the output of a phonograph would be compatible with a mic jack. I'm trying to recall a past experience of doing something like this, and I'm vaguely remembering details (it was about 20 years ago).

    What you may be able to do to keep the sound clean is use a USB video capture device and only use the audio ports. Connect the phonograph to your receiver, and if your receiver has them, use the line out to the line in of the video capture device.

    Never tried this before, but it seems doable.
  8. Le Big Mac macrumors 68030

    Le Big Mac

    Jan 7, 2003
    Washington, DC
    Re: Re: Re: LP's

    That may be right. I beleive the line output from most turntables is lower than the usual level. It might make sense to run a turntable into your amp/receiver, and then use the headphones out jack to plug into the imac. a hassle, yes, but you're doing it only once.
  9. Nicky G macrumors 6502a

    Nicky G

    Mar 24, 2002
    Baltimore & NYC
    I would buy a semi-cheap audio interface that works with USB, maybe something made by Roland. Then you can use a freeby recording program like Spark ME, or pay to get something more full-featured (which you likely don't need). With something like SPark you can record a whole side of a record, and then chop itinto individual tracks. Save those as AIFF files, which can be imported into iTunes using the Add To Library function in the File menu. Burn straight to audio CD, or to conserve space, convert to MP3s (which are lower quality than full CD quality, but take up way less space).

    It's really pretty easy, and quite cheap. A $35 Griffin iMic _might_ be good enough for your needs, but I would spend a few more bucks for a slightly better USB audio interface. Again, you won't have to spend a cent on software if you don't want.
  10. eclipse525 macrumors 6502a


    Aug 5, 2003
    USA, New York
    The iMic will do the trick. Most likely your turntable is RCA(left/right) and all you need is a Y-Adapter.

    It's cheap and will get the job done BUT if you want to spend alittle more than the iMic is not a bad way to go.

    I use to dj (still do as hobby) and have TONS of albums. I need to do the same at some point.

    Good Luck!
  11. peterj1967 macrumors regular

    Aug 30, 2002
    Re: Re: Re: Re: LP's

    You wont be able to go directly from your turntable to your mac. Turntables need phono amps to get them to line level. But it's not a big deal.

    Plug your turntable into your stereo, or whatever you are currently playing through, and then use the Tape Outs to get a line level signal to your mac.


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