How to listen to old CDs on your iPhone

Kim, I have a large collection of music CDs and would like to be able to play them on my iPhone 12. I have a Windows computer. Help! — Mortee in Washington

Transferring music CDs to your iPhone 12 involves a couple of steps: First, you’ll need to “rip” (or convert) the CDs to digital files on your Windows computer, and then you’ll transfer those files to your iPhone. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

Step 1: Ripping CDs to your Windows computer

  • Install iTunes: If you don’t have iTunes installed on your computer, download and install it. Although iTunes has been replaced by individual Music, Podcasts and TV apps on Mac, it remains intact for Windows users.
  • Insert a CD into your computer: Put one of your music CDs into your computer’s CD/DVD drive.
  • Open iTunes & import CD:
    • Once you insert the CD, iTunes usually prompts you to import it into your library. If it doesn’t, you can manually do so by clicking on the CD icon in the top left menu of iTunes.
    • Before importing, ensure the songs you want to import have a checkmark beside them. You can uncheck the songs you don’t want to import.
    • Click the Import CD button.
  • Choose import settings: A prompt will ask which format you’d like to use.
    • Choose AAC Encoder for the best compatibility with your iPhone. However, the MP3 Encoder works as well if you prefer that.
    • Choose a higher quality setting like Higher Quality (192 kbps) for better sound.
    • Click OK to start the import (ripping) process.
  • Repeat for all CDs: Continue this process until you have imported all your CDs into iTunes.

Step 2: Syncing music to your iPhone 12

  • Connect your iPhone: Using your Lightning cable, connect your iPhone 12 to your computer.
  • Open iTunes & select your device: Once iTunes recognizes your iPhone, you’ll see a device icon in the top left menu. Click on it.
  • Go to Music: Click Music under your iPhone’s name in the left sidebar.
  • Sync your music:
    • Choose the Sync Music option.
    • You can sync your entire music library or select specific albums, artists and playlists.
    • Once you’ve made your choices, click the Apply button to begin syncing.
  • Eject & disconnect: Once the sync is done, click the eject icon next to your iPhone’s name in iTunes. You can then safely disconnect your iPhone.

Now, all the music from your CDs should be accessible from the Music app on your iPhone 12.


This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you accept our use of cookies.