I downloaded an audiobook from Audible (part of Amazon) and found it saved as an ".aa" file. I can play it with their software on my PC, but I can't download it to my MP3 player, which only understands MP3.
Obviously this is a DRM issue, as once it's an MP3 it can be copied anywhere.
Which of course is what I want to do.
I've looked around and can't find any simple free methods to convert .aa to mp3.
Apparently you can use iTunes to burn to a CD and then rip it back, but I really don't want to have iTunes on my PC.
Otherwise, I just play it and set Audacity to record. That works, but it runs in real time and I can't use the PC at all in case something makes a beep which will be recorded along with the playback.
Is there a better way? Ideally, just remove the DRM to any normal audio format?
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IF you have a lot of these I'd suggest investing in an mp3 player that CAN play audible files as is.
If memory serves you need a PLAYFORSURE capable mp3 player. You should be able to find a used one online fairly easily.
Otherwise if you only have a handful you want to convert I would suggest you keep doing what you are doing with the realtime dubs. I don't think there is a "crack" for audible.
But getting the right hardware will let you play them as is, no fuss no muss.Donatello - The Shredder? Michelangelo - Maybe all that hardware is for making coleslaw?
Or I could buy the book and pay someone to read it for me and record that.Donatello - The Shredder? Michelangelo - Maybe all that hardware is for making coleslaw?
I've got a new MP3 player, and I have a bunch of tools for manipulating MP3 files.
So, I want MP3.
Anyway, I found this thread in another forum which has several solutions:
Remove DRM from Audible's audio books (Removing copy-protection from .AA files)
The one that looks the most promising is using an older version of Audible's player that can use Goldwave as a "device" and that in turn can write to wave or MP3.
Or this method using dBPowerAmp.
Both use Audible's own direct show filter as input.
The alternatives use either Nero or iTunes, both ugly bloated monsters which I really don't want on my PC.
Last edited by AlanHK; 16th Nov 2013 at 10:33.
Aren't Audible's audio books copy protected?
Last edited by sanlyn; 19th Mar 2014 at 06:38.
Anyway, I used the "Audible Media Player Filter" which was originally part of their player. Now found at
With that, there is an "Audible Words codec" installed in Windows, and .aa can be played as Direct Sound.
So WMP etc can play it, and some utilities, like Goldwave, can open it.
And then save it any format.
One oddity: when opening in Goldwave the audio started wherever the position was the last time it was played. A useful feature if you are playing it and want to continue where you left off. But not if you're converting it.
So I opened it in MPC and pushed it back to the beginning. Then when opening in Goldwave it got the entire file.
So, problem solved, without buying a new audio player.
This is a personal pet peeve of mine: People so bored that they have to weigh in on questions and topics, even if they have no answer. Why?
I once had a reply to a question that was something like, "I don't know the solution to your problem"
Why write anything at all? Are these pathetic people so desperate to be part of something that they pathetically have to say something, even if it doesn't help?
A related pet peeve is people who tell you you shouldn't need to do what you are asking about. Instead of helping, they pick apart your reasons for needing what you need.
Just help or don't. Jeez!
And "tons of search results" means nothing.
It often just means lots of people asking the question, no indication if anyone actually has a workable answer.
And you get "tons of search results" for any random query, thanks to SEO *******s.
Your entire post has no purpose aside from sniping at me.
I just signed up today because I had the same question and found this thread. AlanHK, you a miserable, unappreciative POS. I understand that you didn't get the answer you were looking for but when someone takes the time out of their day to try and offer you some help, it's nice to be a little grateful.
I had to laugh at "I tried to be polite". You don't sound like you have the slightest idea of what polite means.
Got to agree with HibsMax here.
People like the Alan in this thread are a good reason a lot of people don't bother helping casuals out, like you.
Thanks to everyone here who tried to help this ungrateful piece of "work" out with his problem.
maybe something like "thebib62" at a wild guess.
Real "casuals" whose first post is a personal attack aren't making it likely anyone will help them.
The rest was at best well intentioned but time wasting, at worst *******s like you attacking me.
8 months later, still beating this dead horse? Obsessive trolls.
I've made thousands of posts here. Look at them and see how many questions I have answered and people I have helped.
I'm not going to put up with abuse from some guy whose only contribution in the last two years is to log in once to piss on me.
Last edited by AlanHK; 25th Jul 2014 at 04:14.
This thread wasn't helpful. I've worked on this about 4 hours today until I found a completed solution packaged as a torrent. (I've already used this solution to convert 3 audiobooks to mp3)
Essentially you have to install an old version of audible, one of their filters that allows decompression of their file type, a mp3 codec if you don't have it and some free software called goldwave. It's all in the torrents documentation.
I did have the problem (being on windows 8) that the filter wouldn't install because it was missing dlls. Simply google the dlls that you might be missing, download them and put them in the c:\windows\system folder (not the system32 for some reason, as it wasn't detecting them there.)
Anyways, the entire package with documentation was downloaded here:
So? That's the only way to do it: play+realtime capture.
Not trying to co-opt your scoop, just reiterating that there's no getting around those constraints.
I don't know if it works for aax, but it certainly does for aa.
Once you install the Audible codec, you can convert to MP3 using dBPoweramp or Goldwave just as fast as any other format conversion.
There is another method someone has hacked up recently, also much faster than realtime, that apparently works for all formats.
-- post 14 and following, "InAudible". Latest version at end of the thread.
Haven't needed to try that myself, but others say it works.
Very, VERY fast. On my test machine (2.2ghz i7), a 23 hour book can be decrypted, split and re-encoded in 5 minutes.
Last edited by AlanHK; 14th Aug 2014 at 23:35.
No, it DOESN'T work for AAX. That's what I was referring to. AAX is encrypted.
Only encryption workarounds are BRUTEFORCE (not likely or not worth it), and play+realtime capture (whether D->D or D->A->D).
(Note that .aa is also encrypted, but aax is higher quality and presumably harder encryption.)
iTunes is "authorised" to play Audible tracks and has an option to burn to CD.
That's automated to virtual CD, then ripped and converted. Very fast.
The details are on a site that I probably shouldn't mention here but can PM you if you want.
- Click once / one step conversion process
- Decrypts Audible AA and AAX files
- Supports MP3 (LAME) & M4B (NeroAAC) encoding
- Reads Audible metadata and names and tags the output files appropriately
- Will cut files using Audible chapter marks or split using silence detection
Last edited by AlanHK; 15th Aug 2014 at 00:23.
OK, if you say so. Only rarely use AA/AAX myself.
Last edited by AlanHK; 15th Aug 2014 at 02:19.
What? Did somebody say something?....hm, I guess not.
BTW, up to the point where you responded to me today, there was no previous mention of "Inaudible.exe" - and I didn't read the link at the time, so I should be excused, right?
More some who say things like "This thread wasn't helpful." and then reinvent the same method I explained last year.
Or who repeatedly suggest the same methods that I listed in my very first post as unsatisfactory.
I'm also weary of the several (or maybe just one in different guises) jerks who felt compelled post here only to slag me off.
Just remember to click that under his name guys.
I sure did