How to Copy MP3 Music Onto a CD

By Meaghan Ellis

Updated September 22, 2017

Items you will need

  • Computer (with Burner Capability)

  • Windows Media Player

  • Blank CD-R

  • MP3 Audio Files

Copying, also referred to as "burning," MP3 music to a compact disc is one of the most prominent and popular ways to transmit music in today's digital age. MP3 music on CD is done by computer transmission. This method enables you to produce quality playback with a unique authenticated sound, just as you would have used a tape recorder in the past.

How to Copy MP3 Music Onto a CD

Import the MP3 music files to your computer and Windows Media Player. You will need these files to be on your hard drive, prior to attempting to copy them to a CD. MP3 files can be downloaded online or through peer-2-peer file sharing websites (see the links listed in Resources). Once you have retrieved the files you want, you must now import these files to your Windows Media Player library.

Open Windows Media Player, by clicking its icon on your computer's desktop. When the program loads, you will see a navigation menu bar at the top of the screen. Right-click on the blank area taskbar in the upper-left corner of the application screen. When the drop box menu appears, click "File" and "Add to Library." You will see the file directory screen and the folder your MP3 audio files are stored in. Click "OK" to import the audio files in the displayed folder to your Windows Media Player library. A status bar will appear and the program will begin searching your hard drive for audio files. When the file directory screen closes, you will see the newly imported files in your Windows Media Player library.

Click the "Burn" tab in the navigation menu at the top of your screen. You will see a panel appear on the right side of your screen. It should display a thumbnail picture of a CD-RW Disc, a disc storage monitor and a blank "Burn List" panel. Some colors in this panel should be disabled.

Insert your blank CD-R disc into your computer's CD-ROM drive. The computer will take a moment to read the disc. The disc's information should load into the right panel of your Windows Media Player application. The disabled colors should now be enabled for burn configuration.

Locate the MP3 audio files you would like to copy onto you CD-R. Scroll through your Windows Media Player library to locate your MP3 audio files. Highlight and drag the MP3 audio files you desire to burn to the empty "Burn List" panel on the right side of your screen. The storage monitor should also re-configure with each audio file you move to the panel to calculate the amount of space left on the disc.

Click "Start Burn" at the bottom of the "Burn List" panel. Your right panel will shift automatically to the middle panel of the screen. You will be able to see the status of your audio files as they are being copied to your CD-R. Your progress monitor will appear at the bottom of the screen in the right corner. When the burn process is complete, your CD-ROM drive door will automatically eject the disc.


Keep your CDs in a case or cover to avoid scratches. This can damage the playback function of the disc. Your music may skip and, eventually, stop playing.

Be sure your CD does not have previous files on it. You will not be able to use this CD for the burning process.


Make sure your disc is not damaged in any way. Scratches and/or scuff marks can interfere with disc's functionality.

Do not pause or abort the procedure before it is complete. You will not be able to use this disc anymore because there is no way of erasing what you began applying to the disc.

Make sure you already have your MP3 files saved on your computer and imported into your Windows Media Player application. If not, there will be no way to locate and copy your MP3 audio files.