How to compress large audio files: 5 easy and effective ways

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Need to reduce the size of your audio files? Here are several ways to compress large audio files.

Whether you are a podcast producer, musician, or DJ who creates music mixes, you need to know how to compress audio files to reduce their size. It can also be helpful to know how to compress audio files when you just want them to take up less space on your device.

Here are several easy and efficient ways to shrink large audio files to a more manageable size.

READ ALSO: The best free video editors for Windows

Should You Choose Lossless Or Lossy?

The first step in reducing the size of audio files is to determine if your audio is “lossless” or “lossy”.

  • Lossless formats have all the original data intact and therefore are much larger files.
  • Lossy formats use a lower bit rate, removing much of the data from an audio file. This reduces the overall sound quality but also makes it a much smaller and therefore easier file on your hard drive.

Lossy formats are suitable in most situations. As long as you don’t set the bit rate too low, it is unlikely that you will be able to tell the difference between lossy and lossy audio, especially if you are listening on your phone through headphones.

That said, if storage space isn’t an issue and you have high-quality speakers or headphones, a lossless format might be the way to go.

Lossless formats also allow you to “perpetuate” your audio, should you ever acquire better listening equipment. You can still convert lossless audio to a lossy format, but you cannot convert lossy audio back to higher quality lossless formats.

1. Compress MP3 Files With iTunes

Once you have decided what kind of audio file to use, you can easily convert the file using iTunes.

Click on Preferences in the iTunes drop-down menu and navigate to import settings . A new window will appear, where you can change the way files are imported by choosing a different option from the drop-down menu Import with.

For most people, going for an MP3 format will be preferable. If you want, you can choose to make the quality slightly lower to save additional space by clicking Settings> Custom.

Then right click on the file you want to compress and select Create an MP3 version . Apple iTunes will then compress the audio file according to the quality settings you selected and drop the new file directly into your iTunes music.

2. Compress Audio Files With Monkey Audio

Most people can’t hear a huge difference between a lossy 320kbps MP3 and a 1411kbps lossless file, so if you’re a casual listener, a lossy format with a solid bit rate should work. On the other hand, serious audiophiles and sound geeks can be a very special bunch, and they don’t like their sound quality to be disturbed.

If you absolutely need your music in a lossless format, an audio compressor like Monkey’s Audio on Windows should do the trick.

The service compresses files losslessly without compromising sound quality, and offers open source code for developers to use in their own programs. Perhaps the best feature of Monkey’s Audio? It doesn’t cost anything.

Download : Monkey’s Audio (free)

Also discover: VivaVideo Alternatives – 10 Best Video Editing Apps For Android

3. Reduce Audio File Size With Audacity

Using iTunes is a easy way to convert audio files , but not everyone is an Apple or iTunes user. Another must-have tool used for audio compression is Audacity. The software is available for most operating systems.

Audacity has a lot of features for recording and editing audio, but it also compresses audio files. The user interface can be intimidating, especially for those who have never used audio editing software before, but using it to reduce file size is pretty straightforward:

  • Open your file in Audacity
  • Go to File> Export and select the format in which you want to save the file
  • Under Format options, choose it Bit rate mode – variable or constant – then define a quality
  • Press on Record to save a newly compressed file

Audacity also allows you to manipulate the actual sound waves in the audio. Since they are already silent, you can select flat parts of the wave and remove them. After all these steps, click on File and select Export to MP3 to convert the file to the format compatible with the storage.

Download : Audacity (free)

4. Use A Web Compressor

If you don’t want to download and install software, you can try using an online service instead. Most of these tools offer many of the same functionality as offline tools.

A great option is 123apps online audio converter . You can convert an audio file from your computer or from online storage services such as Google Drive and Dropbox.

It has an easy to use interface that allows you to select the desired format. Typical formats like MP3, WAV, M4A, and FLAC are available, but there are also more unusual offerings like the iPhone ringtone format. A slider lets you adjust the bit rate between 64, 128, 192 and 320 kbps, while the tab Advanced Setting lets you adjust things like sample rate and whether you want mono or stereo output.

Once these selections are made, simply click on the button. Convert . It is a very quick and easy way to reduce MP3 size.

Online tools aren’t just for compressing audio files. Take a look at our guide of the best free online audio editors for even more powerful applications.

5.How to Reduce Audio File Size in Android

If you need to compress audio file on mobile, there are a number of Android apps that will do the job.

Audio Video Manager is an application that does the job quite well. You can select your audio file and choose to convert it to a multitude of formats including MP3, AAC or even lossless FLAC.

You can do a simple file conversion or choose to compress it at the same time. Just enable or disable the option Compress , then choose whether you want variable or constant rate, and select the rate itself. You can choose anything from a very low quality of 32 kbps to an excellent 320 kbps.

Finally, click on the button Convert to begin.

Download: Audio Video Manager (free)

Also read: The 6 best Audacity alternatives for audio recording and editing

Choose Your Method And Start Compressing

Now you know how to compress MP3 files and other audio files. Any of the tools listed above will do, and most of them are simple to use.

Audio compression is essential when recording it yourself, otherwise you will end up with large files that are too large to be shared or used in a convenient way.

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