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Going Digital: Converting CDs and DVDs to Digital

If you’re anything like my family, you have hundreds of DVDs and CDs cluttering your house, taking up space everywhere. Thank goodness for the digital world! Now, hard drives are being sold to hold all of your music and movies. Here’s a quick guide to converting your media and saving shelf space.


How to convert CDs

CDs can be “ripped” and converted to MP3, WAV, Wma, Ogg Vorbis, or Flac files to put onto your hard drives.

Put your CD in your CD drive, and when your media application opens up, select from the Rip menu and output format. You can then drag them into your hard drive file or your MP3 file, wherever you want to put your music. FreeRip is a good MP3 converter from CD to MP3. It reads your audio and saves it to your computer using any of the above formats. You’ll have to download the converter.


On PCs, your windows media player will be the best option rip CDs to MP3.  WikiHow has a good step-by-step for those of you who may consider yourselves to be technologically challenged.

How to convert DVDs

Downloading DVDs is a bit different. Because they’re larger files than a single song, they take up more space. Having a big hard drive or using the Cloud would be good for your movies. HandBrake offers a good video converting format for windows. Download the program and install it on your computer. Since most DVDs have copy protection, you’ll have to install libdvdcss, which will be different for Macs and windows. Lifehacker has a few options available for both windows and Mac users and a full explanation on how to convert DVDs. Mac World also has good step-by-step instructions to converting DVDs.

Converting your media can be painful for those who do not know their computers well, but it doesn’t have to be. If you just scour the internet, there will be plenty of ways to do it; here we’ve presented you with just a couple options. Check out some YouTube videos (windows, Mac) if you need the visual representation. It’ll take time if you have lots of CDs and DVDs like my family, but it’ll be well worth it when you have all the space back!


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