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How to Convert Cassette Tapes to MP3 Easily and Affordably

How to Convert cassette tapes to MP3

Last updated on August 29th, 2022 at 11:47 pm

Do you have boxes of audio cassettes lying around, collecting dust? Are you worried they might become unusable sometime in the near future?

If so, you need to act to digitize them. In other words, convert them to a digital file format like MP3.

First, let’s look at whether it’s worth converting your collection of audio cassettes to MP3.

Commercial Tapes

If you have music tapes or recordings of your favorite singers, then it’s not worthwhile.

You should just save yourself the time and hassle and get yourself a CD version of the cassette. Or you could find the songs on Spotify or YouTube Music.

Personal Recordings

Are your tapes of a non-commercial or personal nature – a speech or a lecture or an interview? If so, you should convert them to MP3 before they fall prey to mold attacks.

You may be wondering how to go about converting your audio cassettes to MP3, especially if you don’t have an audio cassette player. You can easily do it as explained in the sections below.

Once converted to MP3 you can burn an audio CD out of the file. Otherwise, you can listen to the audio through any device that can play back MP3.

What Would You Need to Convert Cassette Tapes to MP3?

You would need the following:

  • audio cassettes (you already have this)
  • audio cassette player (cassette to MP3 converter) – discussed below
  • audio capture/editing software (available for free)
  • CD burner (optional)

Among these items, the cassette to MP3 converter is the most important.

How Does a Cassette to MP3 Converter Work?

A cassette to MP3 converter is first a cassette player. When you’re not converting your tapes to MP3, you can use it as a Walkman.

To convert your cassette to MP3, you insert a cassette into it and connect it to a computer through a USB cable. When you play the tape, you’ll use audio capture software to capture audio on your computer.

Does the Converter work with a Mac Computer?

Most of the converters do. However, you’re advised to check on computer platform compatibility before making a purchase.

What Formats Can I Convert the Cassette to?

Apart from MP3, you can convert to popular formats like WMA and WAV.

Does the Converter Work with Older Computer Operating Systems?

An advantage of using the cassette to MP3 converter is you don’t need the latest comper operating system to use it.

If you’re on Windows, you can use it with older versions like Windows 2000 and Windows 7.

Again you would need to check the product specifications if you’re using an older computer.

Does the Converter Package Include Audio Capture Software?

Yes, it does, It comes in the form of a CD-ROM. However, if you aren’t satisfied with its performance, you can always use a better program like the free Audacity.

This versatile video editor can be downloaded for free from its official website.

Do You Need AC Power to Operate an Audio Cassette Converter?

A stand-out feature of the converter is it is battery-operated. However, most of the units allow you to connect to an AC power supply. This is helpful in case you run out of battery power.

Do the Cassette Converters Come with Speakers?

The portable ones, don’t come with built-in speakers. You would have to use earphones plugged into a 3.5mm earphone jack. much like you would do with a smartphone.

However, some models come with a built-in speaker. Such models would suit your taste if you don’t fancy using earphones.

Steps to Converting Your Audio Cassettes to MP3

Each Audio cassette to MP3 converter comes with an instructional manual.

All you have to do is follow the steps to set up the device.

However, to give you an idea, here are the basic steps.

The steps are for the 2 types of cassette to MP3 converters.

The first type doesn’t require you to connect it to a PC. The second type requires you to connect it to a computer to capture audio.

Let’s look at the first type.

Direct USB Capture

Audio is captured into a pen drive with a maximum storage size of 128GB, It must be formatted in FAT 32.

This converter cannot be directly connected to a computer

However, after capturing audio in a pen drive, you can edit it with an audio editing program.

An example of this type of cassette to MP3 converter is the DIGITNOW Portable USB Cassette to MP3 Converter.

Watch the video below to take a closer look at how the unit works.

Computer Audio Capture

These units, as explained above, require you to connect them to a computer via a USB connection.

A USB cable is provided,

You would need to install an audio capture software program included with the bundle.

However, a free and versatile software program like Audacity works with these converters.

Once the audio is captured with Audacity you can export it as MP3.

An example of such a unit is the Reshow cassette to MP3 converter.

If you’re serious about converting cassette tapes to MP3, you may want to consider the following buying ideas.

MYPIN USB Cassette to MP3 Converter

This cassette to MP3 converter captures audio directly to a pen drive.

It comes with the cassette auto-reverse feature. It means the cassette will automatically switch to side B when side A comes to an end.

Check out a similar model in the video below.

Check out the MYPIN cassette to MP3 converter.

ByronStatics Cassette to MP3 Converter

Would you like to listen to the audio when converting your cassette tapes to MP3?

If so, check out the ByronStatics cassette to MP3 converter which comes with a built-in speaker.

Cassette to MP3 Converter Software Free Download

Most of the cassette to MP3 converters come bundled with audio capture software.

Should any of the programs don’t work for you, you may download the Audacity free cassette to MP3 converter software program.

Audacity is by far the best free pro-quality audio editor and capture program.

Audacity Hi Contrast Theme

More Cassette to MP3 Converter Choices

Check out a wider range of choices to convert cassette tapes to MP3.


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