How to Convert MP4 to MP3 in Windows Media Player

By Alexis Lawrence

MP4 files are commonly used for uploading videos to the Internet and for storing and viewing on personal media devices. MP3 files are commonly used for Internet download and also on media devices. Since MP4 and MP3 use the same Moving Picture Experts Group format of compression to minimize the file sizes, the files have similar properties, regardless of the fact that MP4 is video and MP3 is an audio format. If you have Windows Media Player installed on your system, you can use Media Player to convert between the two file formats.

Step 1

Download Windows Media Player to your system if you don’t already have it installed. Windows Media Player can be downloaded for free at the Microsoft website (see Resources). Microsoft offers versions of Media Player in more than two dozen languages.

Step 2

Launch Windows Media Player on your computer. Go to “Start>All Programs” and click on “Windows Media Player” in the list.

Step 3

Open the MP4 file you want to convert in Windows Media Player. Go to the “File” menu, click “Open” and browse for the MP4 in the “Open” window that comes up. Double-click the MP4 file and it automatically begins playing in Media Player.

Step 4

Return to the “File” menu and choose “Save As.” When the “Save As” window opens, click into the box next to “File name” so that the cursor appears at the end of the file extension. Delete the “4” from the end of the extension and replace it with “3.”

Step 5

Scroll down the “Folders” pane in the “Save As” window and choose the folder on the hard drive where you want to save the MP3. Press the “Save” button. A copy of the MP4 file saves into the folder you selected as an MP3 file.

Tips & Warnings

  • Once an MP4 file has been converted to MP3, the video may still appear in some programs when you play the file. Windows Media Player, in fact, still plays any video contained in an MP3 file that has been converted from MP4. Other media players and personal media devices may, however, play only the audio portion of the file while the video appears blank.