How to copy music CDs on Mac OS X

in macOS edited January 2014

This may be a trivial one to answer, but how do I copy music CDs using the CD burner on my iBook? I want to copy a CD so it will play on a normal hi-fi.

The machine is running OS X Panther.




  • Reply 1 of 3
    Easiest way: Use Toast, do a device copy.

    In iTunes, you can set it to extract a CD in AIFF files (lossless audio format), then just burn the files again. Watch the gaps between songs, obviously for a concert CD those gaps need to be zero.

    I've tried disk copy, but it won't let me make an image from device when I select the CD or DVD drive. Maybe someone else knows something more about this method.
  • Reply 2 of 3
    There are two answers to this. 1. Can't be done (at least not how I expected it to be done). 2. Piece of cake to do it.

    1. Panther does not (by itself) allow copying of Audio CDs directly, or by creating disc images. You can copy data CDs using disc images. Third party programs like Roxio Toast allow direct disc-to-disc copies, or via images.

    2. Apple intends that you will copy CDs using iTunes. You do this by importing the music off CD, then creating a playlist of that album and burning it. Just as good right? Not quite. The default importing of music is to 128kb/s AAC (M4A) format. If you want original CD quality on your copied disc, you need to import into AIFF, Apple Lossless or WAV (all of which take up a lot of space) before burning.

    There are other methods, like copying all the AIFF format icons of the original CD, and copying back onto the new disc, but that can be a bit more tricky.

  • Reply 3 of 3
    rbrrbr Posts: 631member
    Toast is really simple. You just make an exact copy of the CD. Then you can put the original away for safe keeping and if the copy gets wrecked you just make another and you are only out a few minutes time and the cost of a CD-R instead of the purchase price of the album. I do this to play CDs in my car CD player where the heat in the trunk and other factors could result in CD being damaged.
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