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Chris HoffmanEditor-in-Chief

Chris Hoffman is Editor-in-Chief that How-To Geek. He"s composed about modern technology for end a decade and was a PCWorld columnist for 2 years. Chris has written because that The brand-new York Times, to be interviewed together a an innovation expert ~ above TV stations prefer Miami"s NBC 6, and had his occupational covered by news outlets like the BBC. Because 2011, Chris has written over 2,000 write-ups that have been read nearly one billion times---and that"s just here at How-To Geek. Read more...

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Sep 6, 2017, 10:24 am EDT| 3 min read
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When burning a CD, you can either burn it together a data disc or an audio CD. A data CD can hold approximately 700 MB, when an audio CD have the right to hold 80 minute of sound. If you have actually 200 MB that MP3 files that add up to three hours of music, you deserve to still just burn 80 minute to the disc. Why is that?


What Happens as soon as You Burn a Data CD

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At the moment of burning, you choose to burn one of two people a data CD or audio CD. Your disc burning program burns the bowl in a various format depending upon the choice you choose.

Data CDs are basic to understand. As soon as you burn a data CD containing MP3s or any other kind of file, your computer system creates a disc containing those files. The records on the disc are the very same size as they space on your computer. So, if you have 200 MB the MP3s you desire to burn to a 700 MB disc, you have the right to place the MP3 files and up to 500 MB of various other data documents on the disc.

Why burn an Audio CD is Different

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Burning an audio CD is different. Audio CDs room not the exact same thing together data CDs, and also they execute not save MP3 files.

An audio CD contains audio data in CDDA (Compact disc Digital Audio) format. This is uncompressed audio data, and it needs a lot more space 보다 MP3 files, AAC files, or any other form of compressed audio file. A minute the CDDA audio always takes increase the exact same amount of room on the disc, i m sorry is why you deserve to only burn a maximum number of minutes come a disc. Even if the song you’re burning space in MP3 format, they need to be converted to the larger CDDA format if you desire the disc to job-related in a continuous CD player.

RELATED: How come Rip Audio CDs come Your pc or Mac

It goes the various other direction, too. Audio CDs friend buy in stores can only have actually a best of about 80 minute of sound, however if you rip one album come MP3 or AAC format, it will use less than 700 MB of storage room on your PC. In stimulate to transform CDDA come MP3, your computer uses a “lossy” compression process, where some data is thrown out. Otherwise, her ripped music arsenal would take up one awful many space!

Burning MP3s to Audio CDs Isn’t Ideal

If girlfriend burn an MP3 come an audio CD, the MP3s will increase to take it up the same amount of room as the initial audio data. However, the result disc will have inferior audio quality when compared to the initial audio CD.

When girlfriend rip music indigenous a CD to an MP3 file or AAC file, you’re not gaining all the initial audio data. Few of the data is discarded to ensure the MP3s have actually a small record size. The result MP3 files won’t have to sound as great as the initial disc. How great they’ll sound depends on the encoder you use and its bitrate settings. Her headphones and speakers are also a factor: the will be easier to tell the difference with higher-quality, an ext expensive headphones.

This is why audio geeks like lossless formats like FLAC, which carry out some compression but keep all the original audio data. If you burn lossless files like FLAC come a disc, you’ll have actually an audio CD v sound quality good as the original.

When friend burn lossy documents like MP3s come an audio CD, the MP3s will be converted to CDDA audio, i m sorry takes up an ext space on disc. But all the audio data that was discarded when the MP3s were produced can’t it is in restored.

Of course, if you’re currently happily listening come the MP3 files, one audio CD girlfriend burn from those papers won’t sound worse any kind of worse than the MP3s. However it won’t have to sound as an excellent as the initial audio disc, either.

Some key Players assistance MP3 CDs

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There’s a weaken available, too. Some CD players deserve to read both typical audio CDs and also “MP3 CDs”.


An MP3 CD is precisely what it sound like. Quite than converting the MP3 files to CDDA while burn an audio CD, friend burn the MP3 files to a data CD. The disc player then reads the CD, tons the MP3 files, and also plays them just like a computer system would.

To find out if your disc player support MP3 CDs, look for an “MP3” logo design on it. You can also read the instruction hands-on or examine its specifications, and you should see MP3 support listed if it has it.

To produce an MP3 CD, you merely burn a data disc and fill it with up to 700 MB of audio files. You may want come organize the MP3s right into folders for this reason they’re less complicated to navigate through on your disc player. Part applications, choose iTunes, have actually an “MP3 CD” option, however you can accomplish the exact same thing by burn the MP3 records to a data disc with any kind of disc-burning tool.

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These CDs won’t work-related on any type of old CD player, therefore this isn’t the most compatible solution. But, if you use a CD player that supports MP3 CDs—maybe your vehicle stereo does, because that example—you can burn MP3 CDs instead of audio CDs come fit an ext music ~ above a disc.

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons, Flickr


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Chris HoffmanChris Hoffman is Editor-in-Chief that How-To Geek. He"s written about an innovation for over a decade and also was a PCWorld columnist for 2 years. Chris has actually written because that The new York Times, to be interviewed together a modern technology expert top top TV stations like Miami"s NBC 6, and had his work-related covered by news outlets like the BBC. Due to the fact that 2011, Chris has written end 2,000 posts that have actually been read practically one billion times---and that"s just below at How-To Geek. Read full Bio »