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I have a number of sound-only mov files that I need in an audio format, preferably wav or ogg. What are the options to achieve this conversion on a Mac? Thank you!

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up vote 7 down vote accepted

QuickTime Pro can export the audio from a .mov file. I know it can export as .wav, maybe .mp3 as well.

You can also use VLC to export the audio from a .mov file on OS X. These directions reference the Windows version of VLC but should get you pretty close to how to do it on OS X.

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Thanks - VLC did the trick for me, though not via the instructions you linked above. I followed those given by Anonymous Freak at (originally for the opposite conversion). – Daniel Mietchen Sep 19 '10 at 12:46
Cool. Thanks for posting that link. – Ian C. Sep 20 '10 at 14:12

Check out Fission by Rogue Amoeba, a lossless editor as well as converter. It's shareware.

I just tested it on a MOV file, and it saved the audio as ogg with no problem. (I checked the ogg audio with VLC, and could hear no difference from the original MOV.)

I also checked two of the free alternatives (XLD and Max), but they choked on the input format. There are probably others, and one may work. But Fission definitely works.

[Followup - IanC has it. VLC will export to ogg.]

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Thanks for the suggestion and for testing it. However, given that I had VLC installed already, so I tried it first. Since that worked fine, Fission's note on the download page stating "Before purchase, audio saved with Fission will be degraded with a series of audio fades." did not seem particularly inviting, so I did not try it. – Daniel Mietchen Sep 19 '10 at 12:50

Opening the MOV directly with Audacity worked fine for me. Also, I wanted to have that audio on Audacity for some processing, so it was just about ideal.

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What was the version of Audacity you used? – wonea May 3 '13 at 20:35
@wonea audacity 2.0.6 with ffmpeg for audacity installed check this out… – Sharky Mar 17 '15 at 11:06

MediaCoder Media transcoder, it can extract audio from a video file, and can make a number of conversions, it will also run on a mac (sort of, but has decent support to make it work).

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Thanks - this seems to be an interesting option for the long run. Will keep it in mind for upcoming file conversions, but did not try it this time. – Daniel Mietchen Sep 19 '10 at 12:53

GarageBand also works for pulling the audio out of a .mov file. You have to create a movie project, which then displays the audio beneath the video track. In the Track menu, you select the option to Hide Video Track. I think the keyboard shortcut is Option + Command + B. This removes the video and changes the project into a regular audio project, and you can export the song to iTunes, etc. I'm using GarageBand '11 (6.0.5), so depending on your version, the option might not be there. I don't know which version was the first one to include support for video projects.

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How to convert a .mov file to an audio file:

  • open the file in QuickTime Player
  • go to File > Export…
  • for Format, select "Audio Only"

Then you can convert it to MP3 in iTunes

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