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iTunes 11 for Windows: Import songs from CDs

Import songs from CDs

You can import songs from CDs into your iTunes library. Once you import songs, you can listen to them without having the original CD in the disc drive.

iTunes imports most songs in a few minutes, and an entire CD in about 10 minutes.

The default encoding format is AAC. To change formats, see Choose import settings.

Import songs from CDs into your iTunes library

  1. Insert an audio CD into your computer’s CD or DVD drive.

  2. To import all songs on the CD, click Yes in the window that appears. iTunes starts importing the CD.

    To prevent certain songs from being imported, click No and follow the next steps.

  3. When the list of songs appears in the iTunes window, click to remove the checkmark next to any songs you don’t want to import.

    Note:   If you’re not connected to the Internet or iTunes can’t find the CD’s information, songs appear as “Track 01,” “Track 02,” and so on. For more information, see If you don’t see song information.
  4. To add the selected songs to your library, click Import CD Heavy gray arrow pointing down.

    The Import CD button
  5. Select your import settings and click OK.

    To cancel importing, click Stop Importing.

    Any songs that iTunes imports before you cancel importing are added to your iTunes library.

  6. When the songs are finished importing, click the Eject button Eject icon to the right of the CD in the Library pop-up menu.

    Library pop-up menu with arrow pointing to the Eject button for a CD

You can continue to use iTunes while songs are importing.

Tip:   You can also import a song by dragging it to the iTunes window.

Join CD tracks

When you import songs from a CD into iTunes, you can group songs so they always play together (even when you’re shuffling songs).

  1. Insert an audio CD into your computer’s CD or DVD drive, and click No in the window that appears.

  2. When the songs on the CD appear in the iTunes window, hold down the Shift key to select the ones you want to join.

  3. Click Gear icon with an arrow pointing down near the top-right of the iTunes window, and choose Join CD Tracks.

    The CD options menu

Import CDs automatically

  1. Choose Edit > Preferences.

  2. In the General pane, choose Import CDs or Import CDs and Eject from the “When you insert a CD” pop-up menu.

    From now on, when you insert a CD, iTunes imports it automatically.

    If you plan to import a lot of CDs, choose Import CD and Eject to eject each CD after all the songs on it are imported.

Prevent a song from importing

Deselect the checkbox to the left of the song title.

If it’s taking too long to import songs

  • The CD may be dirty or scratched. Try cleaning the CD with a soft, lint-free cloth, and then try importing the songs again.

  • If error correction is turned on, it can take longer to import CDs. To turn off error correction, choose Edit > Preferences, click General, click Import Settings, and then deselect “Use error correction when reading Audio CDs.”

If you still have trouble importing songs, visit the iTunes Support website.

If imported songs don’t sound right

If you hear popping or clicking noises when you play songs imported from a CD, your CD drive may not have read the CD correctly. Try turning on error correction and then importing those songs again.

To turn on error correction when importing songs from CDs:

  1. Choose Edit > Preferences.

  2. In the General pane, click Import Settings.

  3. Select “Use error correction when reading Audio CDs.”

  4. Insert the CD and import the songs again.

You may also want to check with the manufacturer of your computer or disc drive to see if there is a firmware update for the drive.

If you have trouble importing songs from an audio CD

If iTunes doesn’t recognize audio CDs or if you’re having trouble importing songs, check the following:

  • If iTunes doesn’t recognize an audio CD (it doesn’t appear in the iTunes window), quit iTunes, then open it again by double-clicking the app icon in the iTunes folder in the Program Files folder on your hard disk. Do not open iTunes using the shortcut on your desktop. If iTunes now recognizes the CD, delete the iTunes shortcut and create a new one.

  • Choose Edit > Preferences, and click Import Settings. If the “Use error correction when reading Audio CDs” checkbox is not selected, select it. If it’s already selected, deselect it.

  • If you’re having trouble importing songs, make sure you check your computer or drive manufacturer’s site for firmware updates and install any that are appropriate for your computer and CD or DVD drive.

  • Make sure you have the latest software updates for Windows or your CD or DVD drive. Check the Windows website and your computer or drive manufacturer’s site for updates. Also make sure you have the latest drivers for your video and sound cards.

  • If you have more than one CD or DVD drive, try using iTunes with each drive.

  • To see if iTunes can find any problems with your CD drive, choose Help > Run CD Diagnostics and choose DVD/CD Diagnostics. For help with understanding the diagnostics results and other CD troubleshooting information, see Additional troubleshooting tips for burning issues at the Apple Support website.

  • If it’s taking a long time to import a song (more than 10 minutes) from an audio CD, the CD may be dirty or scratched. Try cleaning the CD with a soft, lint-free cloth, and then importing the songs again.

You can continue to use iTunes while songs are importing.

Last Modified: Nov 5, 2013
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  • Last Modified: Nov 5, 2013
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