How to Download iPod Podcasts in MP3 Format
By Michael Butler
Many people publish a series of audio programs, called podcasts, through iTunes. Rather than streaming these programs over the Internet, users download them to a computer or mobile device like an iPod. Podcasts on almost any subject are available. You can download your favorite radio program, your church's weekly sermons or a series of college lectures. Podcasts come as either audio or video files. Audio podcasts are in MP3 format. However, video podcasts are in MP4 format and can be put on your iPod.
Open iTunes. Click "iTunes Store" in the menu on the left side of the iTunes window.
Click "Podcasts" in the toolbar. Search around to find a podcast that you want to download. You can search by category, new releases, top episodes and more. Once you find a podcast that you want to download, click on its image icon to go to its iTunes page.
Click the "Subscribe Free" button. iTunes will prompt you to confirm that you want to subscribe to the podcast. Click "Subscribe." The latest episode of the podcast will download to your computer. If you chose an audio podcast, it is already in MP3 format. If you chose a video podcast, you will need to do a little more to get it in MP3 format.
Open Windows Explorer and navigate to the iTunes directory on your computer. By default it is "C:/Users/your user name/My Music/iTunes." However, you might have chosen a different directory when you originally set up iTunes on your computer.
Scroll through the iTunes directory to find the "Podcasts" folder. Double-click on it. You will see a folder for each podcast that you are subscribed to. Double-click on the podcast that has the video you want to convert to MP3. Remember this location.
Open your MP4 to MP3 conversion program. If you do not have one, there are several you can try, like Xilisoft iPod Video Converter, Free Video to MP3 Converter or Hamster Free Video Converter (see links in Resources). Whichever program you use, follow its instructions to open the video podcast file and convert it to MP3. When the conversion is complete, open iTunes again, if you closed it earlier.
Click on the "File" menu, then click "Add File to Library." Navigate to the location of the new MP3 file, click on the file and then click the "Open" button. This will add the MP3 to iTunes so that it can be downloaded to your iPod.
- "iTunes Help"; Apple Inc.; 2010
- You do not need to convert video podcasts to MP3 to play them on most iPods. Many will come ready for iPod playback. If you download one that is not, click on it in iTunes. Click on the "Advanced" menu, and select "Create iPod or iPhone version." iTunes will convert the video for iPod playback.
A professional writer, Michael Butler has been writing Web content since 2010. Butler brings expertise in legal and computer issues to his how-to articles. He has a Bachelor of Arts in English literature from Washburn University. Butler also has a Juris Doctor from Indiana University School of Law, Bloomington.