Monday, August 04, 2008

How to Convert iTunes M4P Music to Zune WMA MP3

You are considering buying a Zune as you broke your iPod or had your iPod stolen. And you bought a lot of songs from iTunes store because you had money left on your iTunes gift card. You still want to enjoy those purchased songs on your Zune music player. Or you own an iPod while your boyfriend/girlfriend has a Zune. You hope to share the M4P music purchased from iTunes store under your account with your boyfriend/girlfriend. Here comes the headache! The M4P music you bought from iTunes is DRM-laden! You cannot transfer the M4P music to the Zune software, not to mention play the M4P music on your Zune music player.

Yet, there seems to be a solution. You can burn the protected M4P music to CD-R or CD-RW disc to make an audio CD and then use some CD ripper software to rip the audio CD track back to Zune accepted MP3 or WMA format. iTunes allows you to burn protected AAC (M4P) music to CD-R or CD-RW disc to make a standard audio CD. Sounds a good idea! But it would be a time consuming process if you have a library of iTunes M4P files ready to be converted to Zune MP3 or WMA. Moreover, the ID3 tags about the M4P music like title, artist and album will be missing after burning and ripping back to MP3 or WMA files. So this method is not recommended if you have a big collection of iTunes M4P files ready to be transferred to your Zune.

I've made a Google search for programs that can convert iTunes M4P to Zune WMA or MP3, and TuneClone Audio Converter attracted my attention. The edge of TuneClone over other similar programs is that it applys the virtual CD burning tech to simulates the burning and ripping process. You just need to burn the iTunes M4P playlist to TuneClone virtual CD drive. TuneClone will directly convert the iTunes M4P music list to Zune WMA or MP3. It is very fast and the music metadata will be well preserved. Below are several key steps to convert iTunes M4P music to Zune MP3 or WMA using TuneClone Audio Converter.

1. Make settings at TuneClone

iTunes M4P to Zune WMA MP3

Click the "Settings" button at TuneClone. In the pop-up window, you can specify the output folder, output filenames, output format, etc. for the converted MP3 or WMA files.

Tip: You can get the converted music folder by clicking the "Folder" button after the whole process.

2. Make settings at iTunes

iTunes M4P to Zune WMA MP3 Converter

Click "Edit -> Preferences... -> Advanced -> Burning". Select TuneClone's virtual CD-RW drive as CD burner. In the "Disc Format" option, tick "Audio CD".

Tip 1: In order to keep the ID3 tags about the music, the "Include CD Text" option should be checked.
Tip 2: The most important step is to choose the CD burner. Then the software can convert the music files automatically.

3. Create a playlist

Create a playlist, and then add the iTunes M4P music files you want to convert to Zune WMA or MP3 into the playlist. After the conversion, the WMA or MP3 music folder should be located under the folder you specified at first. The name of the music folder should be the same as that of the iTunes playlist you created.

Tip: It is exceedingly easy and fast when you want to batch convert lots of files.

After you get the output folder, now you can transfer it to your Zune software so as to enjoy the iTunes music on your Zune music player.

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