How to Record an MP3 on My Mac

by Hollan Johnson
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images News/Getty Images

MP3 is one of the most common types of audio files in use today and many portable music devices use them. However, you cannot directly record an MP3 on a Mac. All modern Macs come with a built in microphone and iTunes which makes converting a file from AIFF to MP3 almost as easy as recording the MP3 directly. In order to record the audio file in AIFF you will need a freeware audio recording program called Audacity.

Step 1

Download Audacity for Mac. Click the download button and wait for the file to mount on your desktop.

Step 2

Open the file and drag the Audacity icon into your Applications folder.

Step 3

Open Audacity. Record your audio clip by pressing the record button, which is a red circle. Stop your audio recording by pressing the stop button, or the yellow square.

Step 4

Save your audio recording. Select “Export as AIFF” from the File menu. Choose a name and location for the recording and press “Save.” Close Audacity.

Step 5

Open iTunes in your Dock or the Applications folder in your hard drive.

Step 6

Open iTunes Preferences in the iTunes menu. Click on “Import Settings” in the “General” tab.

Step 7

Select “MP3 Encoder” from the “Import Using” menu. Select the sound quality from the “Setting” menu. Click “OK” twice.

Select “Add to Library” from the File menu in iTunes. Highlight the file on your Mac and click “Choose.” iTunes will convert the AIFF to MP3 automatically.


  • Name your audio file something unique so it will be easy to find in your iTunes library.


  • Audacity can convert the audio file to MP3 if you download the LAME library.


Photo Credits

  • Justin Sullivan/Getty Images News/Getty Images

About the Author

Hollan Johnson is a freelance writer and contributing editor for many online publications. She has been writing professionally since 2008 and her interests are travel, gardening, sewing and Mac computers. Prior to freelance writing, Johnson taught English in Japan. She has a Bachelor of Arts in linguistics from the University of Las Vegas, Nevada.

More Articles