[Athen] Seeking recommendations for M4A converter

Deborah Armstrong armstrongdeborah at fhda.edu
Mon Apr 20 12:03:19 PDT 2020

Wow! I forgot about ffmpeg. Got to find a windows build as I don’t want to build from scratch on my work computer, but I use it all the time in Linux for fun to convert videos for my hubby, who tends to fill up our server’s hard drive! I need a better grasp in the obvious.

From: athen-list <athen-list-bounces at mailman12.u.washington.edu> On Behalf Of Joseph Polizzotto MA
Sent: Monday, April 20, 2020 11:54 AM
To: Access Technology Higher Education Network <athen-list at u.washington.edu>
Subject: Re: [Athen] Seeking recommendations for M4A converter


If you don't mind working from the command line, you can also use FFmpeg<https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/www.ffmpeg.org/__;!!A-B3JKCz!Smev1lclUsoqLGy5v45VlF0WiVF0cFRfvslsJ03qR57JSLy1QrDkBXMW7kKXfpH0xPXoZQ$>. You can type a command like the following in the terminal to get your desired file:

ffmpeg -i input.m4a output.wav

You can also try converting directly to MP3 from M4A and see if the quality is still too poor for your needs. Here is a command that can do that;

ffmpeg -i input.m4a -acodec libmp3lame -ab 256k output.mp3

It is possible to write a short script that does this process in a loop for all of the files in a directory.

I came across this article that touches on the decline of usability of many desktop applications<https://urldefense.com/v3/__https:/datagubbe.se/decusab/__;!!A-B3JKCz!Smev1lclUsoqLGy5v45VlF0WiVF0cFRfvslsJ03qR57JSLy1QrDkBXMW7kKXfpHKsPMWeA$>. I thought you could relate to a lot of what is said there. Those are also arguments in favor of using the command line! (BTW I am not referring to any desktop applications mentioned in this thread).



On Mon, Apr 20, 2020 at 7:43 AM Deborah Armstrong <armstrongdeborah at fhda.edu<mailto:armstrongdeborah at fhda.edu>> wrote:
Now that we have so many webinars/courses in zoom, I’m seeking a simple converter for Windows that will create .wav files from .M4A. The editor I prefer to use likes wav files or Mp3, but if you convert to mp3 you reduce the audio quality just a bit, so I’d prefer to convert to wav, edit it and then convert to Mp3.

When I record lectures, my main tool for note-taking is to edit the recording about 75% so I have only a short audio file to retain.

This is also useful when I’m working on a recording someone else made.


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