How to Rip Content from CDs Onto Your Computer

a screenshot of mac music app while a c d is being ripped


A a spinning white circle with a red border signifies a track is in the process of being copied; a circled green checkmark signifies a track has been successfully imported.

You’ll see a spinning white circle with a red border while a track is in the process of being copied. A circled green checkmark will appear next to tracks that have been successfully imported. 

Click Stop Importing to cancel a job in the middle; any songs already copied will be added to your music library. When you’re finished and all the songs you want have landed in your digital library, click the Eject button near the upper right corner of the Music window to automatically remove the CD from the drive. On some CD/DVD drives, you must press a physical button to eject a disc.

Incidentally, you can continue to listen to other tunes in the Music app while a CD is being copied and imported.

It’s also worth noting that after inserting a CD into the drive, you can tap a CD info button in the Music app window to discover more about an album, including the artist, composer, genre and year it debuted. You can edit the information to fix errors. 

If you click the Import CD button in the app window, you can change the format settings dictating how songs are encoded, copied and compressed. Apple goes with a default format called AAC, or Advanced Audio Coding, which the company explains rivals the quality of audio CDs and sounds as good as or better than MP3 files encoded at the same bitrate, referring to the amount of data that goes into the sound files.

In general, the higher the bitrate, the higher the audio fidelity, which you can change in the Import Settings window that pops up. Click on a Setting drop-down menu, choose Custom and then Stereo Bit Rate. An alternate method is to go to the Music pulldown menu up top | Preferences | the Files tab | Import Settings button. Then you can Import Using one of five options in the resulting menu.

But most of you will be just fine sticking with the defaults.

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