Best Ways to Burn a CD

by Ron Augustine

Whether you're making a copy of a CD for a friend or crafting your own personal mix CD of various artists, you have different options to choose from when burning a CD. If you're burning data or music, these are the best methods when attempting to efficiently copy your media onto a blank disc.

On or Off the Computer

Some CD burners do not require a computer, and these work very well. If you wish to create multiple copies in a short amount of time, external CD burners are your best option. Simply place the CD that you want copied in the main drive, and blank CD(s) in the burners. Follow the instructions for your specific brand, and you'll have a burned CD within minutes. Most home computers come equipped with CD burners, and they usually work fine too. You can either use CD burning software like Nero, or you can download iTunes for free and use that instead. For the easiest and cheapest burning experience, use iTunes.

With iTunes

Download iTunes at, and organize your mp3s into the iTunes library. If you want to make a CD, go to "File" and select "New Playlist". The left hand column will now flash "Untitled Playlist", and you will have a blank slate to put your songs into. Go to the top of the left hand column and select "Music" (underneath the "Library" tab). You should see all of the songs in your library. Click and drag the tracks that you want on your CD into "Untitled Playlist". Once you have all of the songs that you want in the playlist, look at the bottom right-hand corner of iTunes for "Burn Disc" and click that once. You will be prompted to insert a blank CD into your computer, and once you've put one in it will burn your playlist within minutes.

Burning Speed

To prevent any skips on your burned CD, make sure to burn at an appropriate speed. When you click "Burn Disc" in iTunes, a menu will pop up that allows you to change the speed of the burning process. Set the speed at '8x.' It will take about 10 minutes to burn the disc, but it is a safer speed than "24x" or "Maximum Possible".

About the Author

Ron Augustine is a rookie freelance writer and producer who has worked primarily in radio and print media for Chicago Public Radio's Sound Opinions, Relevant Magazine, WMBI Chicago and the Burnside Writers Collective. He graduated Moody College in 2007 with a degree in Communications.