How to Rip CD [Mac Windows Software]
audio file converter for music production and hi‑end audio

How to Rip CD [Mac Windows Software]

What does rip cd mean? Rip / extract / copy / grab / convert CD audio means read audio data from compact disk and store the data into computer files. To extract CD a ripping software is used. Read step-by-step guide and watch video how to convert CD to music files and what is sound quality there.

How to rip CD audio on Mac and Windows

To rip CD audio on Windows or Mac OSX to WAV, FLAC, mp3 and other formats:

  1. Insert music compact disk and open audiophile safe CD ripper AuI ConverteR 48x44 *

  2. Push Open button and select track(s) from CD-audio (file placed on CD).
  3. In right part of the main window select output (target) file format (.mp3, .flac, .wav, .aiff, .alac, etc.), sample rate and bit depth.
  4. In Directory output files select absolute path.
  5. Assign album artwork *
  6. Push Start button and wait for end of extraction. Check ripping errors.
Watch and share: How to rip CD audio to WAV, FLAC, mp3 and other


* AuI ConverteR 48x44 Free allow to rip the first CD-audio track in the "Source files" list of the software main window.
For the second and further input CD-audio tracks, 2 second of silence will applied into the middle of the ripped files.
CD ripping of all tracks in the list is available in PROduce-RD and configurable Modula-R editions.
Free edition don't assign artwork to the ripped files. Artwork assigning is available in all-included PROduce-RD and configurable Modula-R editions).
Read more about price options here >


Sound quality

Lossless CD extraction

To extract CD audio in lossless mode:

  • in Settings (in right bottom of the main window push Settings button) > General > check "Don't make DSP..." switch;
  • in right part of the main window select output (target) format WAV, FLAC, AIFF, ALAC, sample rate 44100 Hz and bit depth 16 bit.

Read How to choose best CD rip format >


Compact disk reading errors

In ideal, a CD ripper software must get CD data without errors. It is maximal sound quality.

Error here is difference between audio data into ripped files and files, that were used to record the CD. This difference is out of control the CD user with any CD ripper.

To found reading fault, CD rippers use optical drive abilities and additional compact disk data processing.

But no one ripping software guarantee 100% probability of correct error detection.

Fortunatelly, most of optical disks are extracted without faults (despite the they may be there).

CD drive is very important matter for fault detection and recovering quality. The drive detect and try fix faults directly during physical medium reading. Some devices form C2 error flags. However, as author know, C2 implementation is different for various devices and not all drives form these flags.

CD extraction software may be matter for successful fault detection.

We should consider CD drive and ripping software as single system in every case.

CD rippers may perform non-correct data detection procedures. Some of rippers use C2 flags there. The detection procedure implementation depend on compact disk extraction software.

If fault are found, AuI ConverteR try to recover damaged audio data.


For details watch video and read how to choose best CD rip software >


If CD ripper perform resampling, sound quality is matter of used software.



Tips and tricks

  • To open all tracks, use Open dir button.
  • Use always absolute target directory (example: c:/music). It is impossible use relative folder, because it is placed on CD.
  • AuI ConverteR always use safe extraction with maximal available abilities. There is no necessary to adjust the extraction software's settings to achieve its best result.
  • Safe extraction is slow process.
  • To achieve maximal effectiveness and reduce CD-drive load, CD tracks are extracted sequentially (track-by-track).
  • If CD tracks are resampled, the sound processing of several tracks is performed parallelly (if software edition allow it).
  • AuI ConverteR get text metadata from free Internet database. The ripper assign target directory and track names according metadata.
  • If the CD extractor found fault it is not mean that is real wrong information there. Because non-correct data may be recovered into optical drive and the ripping software.


CD ripping error displaying

AuI ConverteR use safe ripping technology by Audiophile Inventory. The technology allow to be offline Internet during ripping and suitable for rare CDs.

If ripping is finished with errors, in the main window > Log tab, CD ripping error table will shown.

Each row is CD track with error. There are fatal errors (cannot be fixed by CD ripper) and probably recovered errors.

Recovered errors don't guarantee, that data is recovered correctly.

Above the table RED light show that fatal errors is present. Or AMBER light show that there are probable recovered errors only.

Both fatal and probably-recovered errors may be either audible or inaudible.

If compact disk extraction issues there, you can to see its physical place into ripped files with visual error display.


Read more about safe CD ripping technology here >


Assign custom metadata application

AuI ConverteR allow to assign custom metadata application (in some versions) that meet special requirements.

See Settings > CD ripper / ISO:

CD metadata executable - path to application for access to Internet database with CD metadata. The application should works with templates (see below) like cdmetadata utility.

CD metadata executable params - command line parameters of the application.

Command line templates:

%driveletter% - drive letter of asked CD (for Windows).

%cddbfilename% - name of *.cddb file with metadata description, that should generate the executable.

The name of the file should be generated in format "audio%num%.cddb",
where %num% - sequential number of .cddb file, that generated by the executable. There are may be several files, if the database has several entries for asked CD.

Example of parameters:

"%driveletter%" "%cddbfilename%"


Internet database with metadata

AuI ConverteR is capable to get text metadata from Internet database.

Some CDs can have multi description in Internet CD-metadata database. As example, descriptioons in different languages.

If the database return several descriptions for one CD during ripping, AuI ConverteR show to user request window.

Multy entry in CD metadata database

In upper drop-down list possibly select what metadata you prefer.

If pushed Cancel button, all metadata will ignored.



Every or almost every compact disk is ripped with fatal errors or ripping is hang or broken

You use builtin IDE/ATA CD-drive

You can try external USB drive to read CD.


You use external USB CD-drive

First, check and/or replace cable. As rule, thick qualitative cable is required. Also, some cables contains two USB connectors. Try connect both ones.

Using of doc stations, connected to computer, also can cause ripping errors. It's recommended to connect CD-drive's USB cable to the computer directly.

If you uses Mac with USB-C only, it's recommended to use USB-C CD-drive device.


Frequently asked questions

What is the best software for ripping CDs?

The author don't know public serious researches what CD-ripper is actually the best (safest). About criteria and methods, that you can perform right at home to test CD-ripping software read here...


How do I rip music from a CD onto my computer?

How to rip CD on Windows and Mac OS X read here...


How do I rip a CD onto my Mac? How do I copy a CD onto my Mac? How do I rip a CD to my MacBook Pro?

How to rip CD on Mac OS X read here...


Is iTunes good for ripping CDs?

For majority of cases used CD-ripper software is not matter.

If you have audible sound quality issues with iTunes, see here.


How do I import a CD to iTunes on a Mac? How do I rip a CD in iTunes?

  • Insert a CD-audio into CD-drive, that connected to your computer.
  • When iTunes show tracks, choose "Import CD".
  • Choose target ripping format and rip the CD-audio.

If you have issues with sound quality (interruptions, silences, pops/clicks, etc.) check "error correction" option in import settings or try alternative ripping way.


Can iTunes rip CDs to mp3?

Yes, it can. When import CD choose mp3 format.


What is the best format to rip CD in iTunes?

AIFF (.aiff) or ALAC (.m4a) or WAV (.wav) may be recommended as lossless formats.

However, ALAC have lesser size. WAV may have issues with metadata processing in a musical software.


Does ripping CD ruin it?

CD ripping is more intensive process than usual playback. As rule, compact disk is re-readed several times.

Optical disk is readed contactless way. But some mechanical load due rotation and laser heating may impact with time to the disk physical properties, theoretically.

Author don't know about real cases of optical disk damaging due ripping.


What does burning CD mean?

Burning CD is copying files (including audio) to re-writable/writable CD with special burning software and writable CD-drive.


What is the difference between burning and ripping a CD?

Ripping CD is extracting compact disk data content to computer files.

Burning is recording computer files to compact disk.


Read more at CD ripping F.A.Q. >


How to rip CD on Mac, Windows



Read other articles about audio issues
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Best CD Ripping Software Mac, Windows. How to Choose [Quick Guide]
R2R Ladder DAC vs Sigma-Delta DAC vs DSD DAC [Infographic Inside]
What is DSD Audio? Read About 10 Things You Want to Know
How to Convert ISO to DSF on Mac OS, Windows [Step-by-step Guide]
DSD High-Resolution Music Downloads [Check Free Files]

July 5, 2022 updated | since August 24, 2018

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