How to burn an audio CD from .flac files in OS X

by Ross McKillop on September 23, 2006

Mac

This tutorial will take you step-by-step through burning (recording) audio CD’s from .flac files, in OS X.

You have a couple of choices when it comes to creating audio CD’s from flac files. You can pay for Toast, which is a feature-rich CD/DVD burning utility, or you can use Burn, which is an open-source (free) CD/DVD burning utility. What’s the catch, you ask? With Toast you can do it all in one step – with Burn you have to do it in two steps. Either way – it’s all outlined below.

The free route:

Step 1. Download and install xACT and Burn. The installation for both is very straight forward.
Step 2. Decoding .flac files to .wav with xACT
Step 3. Creating an audio CD with Burn

The I-paid-for-Toast route -

How to burn flac files straight to audio CDs using Toast
 
 


 
 
Decoding .flac files to .wav with xACT

  1. Launch xACT and select the decode tab
  2. decoding flac files

  3. Click the add button
  4. decoding flac files

  5. Navigate to the .flac files you want to decode, select them all, and then click Add files
  6. decoding flac files
    Click to enlarge

  7. Now you’ll need to select the output – I use and suggest .wav. Click Decode when you’re ready
  8. decoding flac files
    Click to enlarge

  9. You’ll be prompted to choose a location to save the output files. Select the same folder where the .flac files are located and then click Choose
  10. decoding flac files
    Click to enlarge

  11. The decoding process only takes a few minutes.
  12. decoding flac files

  13. When it’s completed you’ll be back at the decode screen but there won’t be any files in the decode list. Feel free to close xACT now.
  14. decoding flac files

Creating an audio CD with Burn

Now we’re going to take the wav files you just created with xACT, and use Burn to turn them into an audio CD.

  1. Start by launching Burn. Now is probably a good time to make sure you have a blank CD in your recordable drive.

    If you’re recording a concert, you’ll probably want to make the CD gapless (no ‘pauses’ between each song). Select Burn from the menu and click Preferences.

  2. record audio cds from flac files using burn

  3. Select Audio from the top menu and then Audio CD from the second menu. Make sure that Pregap: is set to 0 (zero) Seconds. If you do want a pause between each song, enter a number (2 is good).
  4. record audio cds from flac files using burn

  5. Close the Preferences window and select the Audio tab. Click the + (plus) sign to add songs to your CD
  6. record audio cds from flac files using burn

  7. Navigate to the .wav files that you created with xACT. Select them in the order you want them to play on your audio cd (hold down the apple key to select multiple files at once). Click Open to add those files.
  8. record audio cds from flac files using burn

  9. Review the track order etc and make any necessary changes. Also be sure that the Total Time: does not exceed the time that your CD-R allows (usually 80 minutes but do check). When you’re ready, click Burn.
  10. record audio cds from flac files using burn

  11. Click Burn again…
  12. record audio cds from flac files using burn

  13. Sit back and watch. Or grab a cup of coffee cause it’s actually pretty boring. Burn will eject the CD once the recording is complete, and notify you with an audio “ding”. When the recording is done, give the CD a listen to make sure everything worked out, and then feel free to delete those .wav files.
  14. record audio cds from flac files using burn

How to burn flac files straight to audio CDs using Toast

The folks over at Roxio could not have made it easier to turn .flac files into an audio CD. Open Toast, select Audio CD from the menu, and then drag the .flac files directly into the main Toast window. That’s it.

If you’re recording a concert, you’ll probably want to create a gapless (no pauses between songs) CD. To do this, highlight every track except the first one, and in the Pause: column, right click and choose Set to 0 sec.

setting Toast to burn with no gaps between songs

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  • http://jordanmeeter.com/ Jordan Meeter

    Thank you for this helpful post! I made the decision to go with Toast. :)

  • Tim

    Awesome – very helpful and very easy to follow. I took the cheap (free) way out. Great to utilize the tools that are out there. Thanks again.

  • Jordan

    Hey excellent walkthrough! you just made life so easy right now. I use a mac powerbook 10.4os, and I took the free route. It worked flawlessly. Thanks alot!

    Jordan

  • chexue

    Doesn’t work for me… when i burn a CD with different music file formats using Toast Titanium 9, the FLAC files are not on the CD, but the other tracks (mp3, OGG, WAV…) are. Any suggestions?

  • Chris

    Burn now supports using FLAC files directly, so no need for the 2 steps!

  • Rusty

    When drop FLAC files on to Toast 9 Audio CD window it crashes..end of yarn !!!

  • http://qeye.tk yautou

    Thx a lot !
    Burn is excellent.

  • Kot

    Thanks!

  • lfrohling

    Thank you so much!!!!!!