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How to transfer albums to your personal computer

How to transfer albums to your personal computer
© Tom Wang | Dreamstime.com

Q: I have a massive collection of music CDs from over the years. I'm wondering if you could help me with a simple way to transfer these albums to my computer and then a portable device?

A: This is a great question from a listener in Melbourne, Florida. Transferring your albums is simple, let's walk you through the process.

Importing music into Windows Media Player

If you plan on listening to your music with an MP3 player that isn't made by Apple, you'll want to import your CDs into Windows Media Player. This is done through a process known as "ripping" a CD. You can also do this to import pictures and videos that you have stored on other gadgets.

When you rip music from a CD, you're copying the music from an audio CD to your PC. During this process, the Player compresses each song and stores it on your drive as a Windows Media Audio (WMA), WAV, or MP3 file. Ripped files are automatically saved to the Music folder but you can change the location using the options on the Rip settings tab.

Here are the steps to ripping music from a CD:

  • Open Windows Media Player
  • Insert an audio CD into the PC's CD drive
  • Select the Rip CD button - If you don't want to rip every song, clear the checkboxes next to the songs you don't want

Note: Make sure your PC is connected to the internet if you want Windows Media Player to automatically get info about the songs, such as the name of the artist, the album and titles for tracks being ripped.

How to transfer music to an MP3 player

Once your music is ripped to Windows Media Player, you can transfer it to an MP3 player. To do this you need to sync your device. Here are those steps:

  • Open Windows Media Player
  • Connect your MP3 player to your computer using the included cable
  • Enable or disable the Automatic Sync option - If enabled, your gadget will automatically sync each time it's connected to your computer
  • All songs in Windows Media Player will show up on a playlist - If there are songs you don't want transferred to your MP3 player, uncheck the box next to each song you don't want moved
  • Click Start Sync

When the syncing process is finished, it's safe to unplug your gadget and begin listening to your music.

Continue reading to learn how to import music for iOS gadgets.

Next page: Importing music for iOS gadgets
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