How to Convert WAV Files to AU Files

by Contributor

WAV files are uncompressed sound recordings, typically used on Microsoft Windows operating systems. AU files are also uncompressed sound recordings, stored in a different format. AU files were created by Sun Microsystems, and are more common on UNIX-based systems. Conversion between the two formats is simple and can be done with any of many free tools available online.



Download and install Audacity. Audacity is open-source software, and is available from its authors completely free. Go to the Audacity homepage at and download the software to your computer, then install it.


Load your WAV file into Audacity. Start Audacity, then go to "File -> Open" in its menu. Find your WAV file and open it.


Set Audacity to export in the AU format. Go to Audacity's "Preferences" menu. Click the "File Formats" tab, which is along the top of the Preferences window. The second section there is called "Uncompressed Export Format," and it has a drop-down list of many different file formats that Audacity can export. Click the list and select one of the "AU" formats -- Audacity supports both 16 bit and 8 bit AU exports. If you're not sure which one you need, select 8 bit. Then hit the "OK" button to close the preferences window.


Export your AU file. Click the "File" menu and then click "Export as AU..." A dialog box will pop up asking you where you want to save your AU file. Choose a location on your disk and click "Save."


  • check Audacity can import and export many other formats besides just AU and WAV. It's a good general purpose audio editing tool, as well.