April 27, 2021

12 Best WAV-to-MP3 Converters

11 min

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Just follow these simple steps:

  1. Download and launch Movavi Video Converter
  2. Add files to the program
  3. Choose the output format
  4. Click Convert

The Best Ways to Convert WAV to MP3

What are the best ways to convert WAV to MP3 file formats? How can you convert WAV to MP3 online? We tested converting options in media players, online video converters, and desktop video converter apps to see which options work best, which are the fastest, and which are the most user friendly. First, let’s take a look at how to convert WAV to MP3 with Movavi Video Converter. Then we’ll move on to a few video converter alternatives, both online and on your computer, and we’ll answer questions about MP3 or WAVE files and how to convert them.

How to Convert WAV to MP3 with Movavi Video Converter

Wondering how to convert WAV to MP3? Movavi has the answer – use our WAV-to-MP3 converter with free download. The Movavi converter supports 180 video and audio formats and also lets you save files for playing on more than 200 types of mobile devices. With this handy tool, you can convert WAV to MP3 and vice versa in just five minutes!

Step 1. Install the WAV-to-MP3 Converter

To convert from WAV to MP3, download the Movavi converter. This simple but powerful software can transfer music from WAV to MP3 or vice versa at high speed. You can also use the program to extract soundtracks from films, clips, and ads.

Step 2. Add a File to Convert

Launch the software, then go to Add Media > Add Audio in the converter interface. Choose the music files you want to change from WAV to MP3 or vice versa. You can convert a single file or batch process several files at once.

Step 3. Choose the Format and Settings

In the Output format field, set MP3 or WAV, depending on your needs – you can turn WAV into MP3 just as easily as MP3 into WAV. You will find the MP3 presets under Audio > MP3. Here, you can choose the preset with your preferred bitrate, but remember that the higher the bitrate, the greater the quality and file size will be.

You can also change a number of parameters, like the sample rate and bitrate, by clicking the Cogwheel icon.

Step 4. Compress the WAV File to MP3 (Optional)

If you want to compress your file, click the file size. Use the Quality slider to select the target file size. You can click Convert sample to convert a part of your file with the selected quality and see if you're satisfied with the result.

Step 5. Convert WAV to MP3 or Vice Versa

To choose the folder in which to save the output files, click the Save to button. To convert your WAV file to MP3, just click Convert to start the process. Converting WAV to MP3 usually takes from one to ten minutes, depending on the size and number of files. When the conversion is complete, your new files in MP3 format will automatically be displayed in the selected destination folder.

Now you know how to convert WAV to MP3 and vice versa. Converting music between formats is as easy as 1–2–3 with the Movavi converter!

4 Free WAV-to-MP3 Converters – How Do They Compare?

There are a lot of free WAV MP3 converters out there, but which one should you choose? Is Movavi Video Converter the right one for you, or should you go with an alternative? Here are step-by-step instructions for how to convert from WAV to MP3 with some of the top media players and video converters.

How to Convert WAV to MP3 with iTunes

iTunes is Apple’s proprietary music app. It’s a robust application with multiple capabilities, including music and video library, internet music streaming, and media player. While it is included in all of the latest Mac OS versions, Apple has also created a Windows version that can be run on PC. When you convert WAV to MP3, iTunes saves the new in your library. Below, you’ll find quick steps to use iTunes to convert WAV to MP3.

Operating system: macOS, Windows

Cons:

  • Takes up a lot of storage space
  • Limits on usage authorization
  • Speed – users report longer lag times than other apps

To convert WAV to MP3 in iTunes, you’ll need to:

  1. Open iTunes.
  2. Change the import settings for MP3s:

    a. Convert WAVE to MP3 macOS: click iTunes on the menu bar and choose Preferences.

    b. Convert WAV to MP3 Windows 10: click Edit on the menu bar and choose Preferences.

  3. Choose MP3 Encoder for “Import Using”, Higher Quality (192 kbps) for “Setting”, and click OK after you make your selections.
  4. Find the song file you wish to convert in your iTunes Library.
  5. Right-click or two-finger click on the file name and select Create MP3 Version.

VLC: How to Convert WAV to MP3

VLC is an open-source media player with built-in WAV-to-MP3 freeware, available to download online for almost any platform. It plays most mainstream media file types, and you can convert .wav to .mp3. When you convert WAV to MP3, VLC can be a bit complicated. Below, you’ll find step-by-step instructions for VLC to convert WAV to MP3.

Operating system: Windows, macOS, Linux, Android

Cons:

  • Below average playback quality
  • Complicated user interface
  • No library
  • Lacks advanced music playing features

To convert WAVE to MP3 in VLC, you’ll need to:

  1. To convert WAV to MP3 in VLC, go to the VLC menu and select Media.
  2. In the Media tab, select Convert/Save.
  3. Click Add.
  4. Find and select the audio files you want to compress WAV file to MP3.
  5. Next to the Convert/Save button, click the down arrow to expand the conversion menu.
  6. Click Convert.
  7. In the dialog box that opens, select Convert and choose Audio – MP3 from the dropdown selection in the middle of the box.
  8. Choose the name and location for your destination file.
  9. Click Start.

How to Convert WAV to MP3 with Audacity

Audacity is another way to get a WAV-to-MP3 converter free download. It’s one of a few open-source audio programs designed to work across platforms. So, how can you convert an Audacity file to MP3?

Operating system: Windows, macOS, GNU/Linux

Cons:

  • No capabilities to change edits after they’re made
  • Unfriendly user interface
  • Requires third-party plugins for some functions
  • No integrated tutorials, lack of support

To convert WAV to MP3, Audacity uses seven fairly simple steps:

  1. In Audacity, click the File menu.
  2. Select Import and choose Audio.
  3. Wait for the import to complete (you’ll see sound waves appear when it’s ready).
  4. Go to the File menu again.
  5. Select Export and click Save as type in the export window.
  6. Choose MP3 Files from the drop-down menu.
  7. Give your file a name and click Save to change WAVE to MP3.

FFmpeg is a multimedia player, decoder, and encoder that lets users play saved media and stream media online, as well. FFmpeg is an open-source option, and it’s usually only chosen by people who are used to working with freeware that doesn’t have a lot of support. You can get this WAV-to-MP3 converter for free.

Operating system: Windows, macOS, Linux, Solaris, BSD

Cons:

  • Difficult to use
  • Uses a lot of storage space
  • No support

FFmpeg WAV-to-MP3 conversion is probably the simplest but also the least user-friendly process of all of the converters in this article. You won’t find a graphical user interface that walks you through the process. Instead, you’ll need to:

  1. Navigate to the folder where your WAV file is saved.
  2. Open a terminal.
  3. Type “ffmpeg -1 [current file name].mp3 [new file name].wav” into the command line.

How to Convert WAV to MP3 Online

Not all WAV-to-MP3 converters live on your desktop or laptop. You can also convert WAV to MP3 files online. Online converters’ big advantage is their ability to work with any operating system. At the same time, if you use a WAV-to-MP3 converter online, you must be connected to the internet with plenty of bandwidth and a strong connection to work. And conversion times and download speeds can be a lot slower than a desktop converter. Let’s take a look at some of the top online WAV-to-MP3 converters available today.

Online Video Converter is a web app that lets you convert WAV to MP3 online without downloading a media player or converter application. Because it’s online, Online Video Converter works on any operating system, but there are some downsides to this application.

Cons:

  • Must be connected to the internet to convert files.
  • File size limitations.
  • Limited conversion features

To use Online Video Converter, go to the converter website. On the right, you’ll see a box with three buttons. Click Add Your Media. You can choose media from your device, Dropbox, or Google Drive. Next, select the MP3 as your target format. Finally, once you’ve uploaded your media and selected MP3, hit Convert and your conversion will begin.

CloudConvert is an online free WAV-to MP3-converter that supports MP3, M4A, WMA, and WAV file formats. It has a fairly simple user interface and allows you to convert WAV to MP3 for free online from anywhere you have an internet connection.

Cons:

  • Files may be compromised if the app doesn’t recognize the font.
  • The user interface isn’t very intuitive
  • Conversion speed is limited by bandwidth and connectivity

To convert a WAV sound to an MP3 file, go to CloudConvert’s WAV-to-MP3 converter. If you’re uploading a file from your device, hit the red Select File button and browse for your WAV file. If you want to upload from a URL, Google Drive, Dropbox, or OneDrive, select the one you want from the drop-down menu that appears when you click on the down-arrow next to Select File. Once you've uploaded your WAV file, select MP3 as the Audio Codec. If you want, you can make other changes, like increasing or decreasing the volume and trimming the start and end timestamps.

Convertio supports a wide range of file formats to convert online, including WAV and MP3 formats. It’s a free online converter with a fairly easy-to-use interface.

Cons:

  • Only available online
  • Your files are automatically removed after 24 hours
  • Bandwidth limits conversion speed

On Convertio’s website, click Choose Files or the Browse icon in the red button to upload files from your device. Or you can choose one of the other upload option links, including Dropbox, Google Drive, and uploading from a link. Next, use the drop-down options to the right to choose WAV to MP3. Below, you can also change settings like bitrate and audio channels.

Zamzar is a web app that lets you drag and drop WAV files to convert to MP3 and other formats. Like the other web apps here, you have to be online to use it, but you can use any compatible browser.

Cons:

  • No way to convert multiple WAV to MP3 files at once
  • Files are only available for 24 hours
  • Small file size limitations
  • Long conversion times

If you want to convert WAVE files to MP3 with Zamzar, drag your WAV file to the green Add Files button on Zamzar’s WAV converter page. Once your file has uploaded, you’ll be prompted to select the file format you want. Choose MP3 from the drop-down menu below step 2. Then hit Convert Now under step 3.

Online-Convert.com has a WAV-to-MP3 converter app on its website. The tool is free and requires no download, but the site has a very busy design and can be a little confusing to navigate.

Cons:

  • Confusing navigation
  • Users report the site doesn’t always work
  • Slow conversion times
  • Must be online to convert

Like Zamzar, Online-Convert.com lets you drag and drop files directly onto the converter. Go to Online-Convert.com. Then drop files in the green box, or you can select Choose Files to browse. You may also choose other options, including entering a URL, Dropbox, and Google Drive. Once you’ve made your selection and uploaded your WAV file, hit the green Start conversion button below.

FreeConvert.com is a similar web app for converting WAV to MP3. This online converter won’t let you drag and drop files, but it has a fairly user-friendly interface.

Cons:

  • Small file size limit
  • Conversion speed limited by bandwidth
  • Only available online

Using any compatible browser, you can change WAV to MP3 by going to FreeConvert.com. Click the blue Choose Files button to browse for your WAV file(s) or click the down-arrow to select files from Dropbox, Google Drive, or a URL. The conversion will then begin, and when you see it change to Done, click Download MP3 to get your file.

Onlineconverter.com is a multi-use free online conversion tool. When you go to onlineconverter.com, you’ll notice options to perform unit conversions (e.g., weight/mass, temperature, etc.), as well as options to convert video, audio, eBooks, and documents.

Cons:

  • Slow conversion and download speeds
  • Must be online to convert
  • User interface is not intuitive
  • Does not work with encrypted or protected files

Navigate to the Online Converter WAV to MP3 page. On the left, click on the drop-down menu next to Source. This will allow you to either upload your file or enter a URL. If you select Upload File, you’ll see a Choose File button below. If you select From a URL, a text box will open for you to enter the URL. You can then start the upload by clicking Convert. Once your file is uploaded, you’ll get redirected to another page where you can get your MP3 file.

How to Choose the Best WAV-to-MP3 Converter

As you can see, there are a lot of WAV-to-MP3 converters available to use online or download on your computer. So, how can you choose the right one for you? If you want a reliable way to convert WAV to MP3 files, with or without an internet connection, you should download a free converter. You’ll need to be aware of how much space you’re using up with your download, though, and you’ll want one that’s user-friendly and does everything you need, like Movavi Video Converter.

WAV vs. MP3 Сomparison

MP3 vs. WAV: what’s the difference? The WAV file format can contain audio encoded with different codecs. It is mostly used to store uncompressed audio, that’s why WAV files are often quite large. MP3 is the name for both the audio codec and the container format. The MP3 codec is used for lossy audio compression, so MP3 files are relatively small. This format is very popular and can be played on almost any device.

Comparison Parameter

WAV

MP3

File extension.wav, .wave.mp3
File sizeRelatively largeRelatively small
Audio codecsPCM, GMS, MPEG-1/MPEG-2 Audio Layer III, othersMPEG-1/MPEG-2 Audio Layer III
Supported byWindowsWindows, Mac, portable devices

Frequently Asked Questions

MP3 or WAV: which one should I choose?

Choosing between MP3 and WAVE files is a matter of compression and storage. Basically, when looking at WAV vs. MP3, a WAV is an uncompressed (also called lossless) file format. To get the best results when producing and editing a file, you want to use an uncompressed format, like a WAVE file. If you want to distribute an audio file that won’t take up all of the memory on listeners’ devices, choose MP3. Basically, consider how you’ll be using your WAV or MP3 file – if you need high quality sound or not – and then choose the format that best suits your purpose.

How do I convert a batch of WAVs to MP3?

When you convert multiple WAV to MP3 files, you want a solution that isn’t dependent on internet connection and bandwidth. So, the best way to convert batch WAV to MP3 files is to use a desktop converter like Movavi Video Converter.

How do I convert WAV to MP3 on a Mac?

For a simple, easy-to-use WAV-to-MP3 converter, Mac users can:

  1. Download the program by clicking the link below.

    Download Movavi Video Converter

  2. Drag and drop your WAV files into Movavi on your Mac.
  3. Choose MP3 as your output format.
  4. Hit Convert.

How do I convert WAV to MP3 on Windows 10?

If you want to turn WAV into MP3 on your Windows 10 computer:

  1. Download the program by clicking the link below.

    Download Movavi Video Converter

  2. Drag and drop your files into the WAV-to-MP3 software.
  3. Choose MP3 for your output format.
  4. Hit Convert.

How do I convert WAV to MP3 with Windows Media Player?

To convert WAVE files to MP3, Windows Media Player lets you drag and drop your WAV file(s) into the Windows Media Player library. This will automatically import your files into the library. Then you can change WAV to MP3 files by going to the Options menu and clicking on the Rip Settings tab. From here, choose the Format tab. The tab will expand, and you can then choose MP3 from the drop-down menu. Then you can finish up by selecting Apply and then hitting the Rip button. This will start the conversion process, and when it’s done, you’ll have a compressed MP3 version of your WAV file.