Jobim from OGG to MP3 using FFmpeg

Wave is a great song. First track on album of same name and first song in video.

Ran into a torrent. As I typically do. This audio torrent – Antonio Carlos Jobim – 1967 – Wave [remastered, 1988] Ogg Vorbis – was a wee bit different. MP3s are good enough for me, but this torrent was of Ogg Vorbis. Torrent done (Use first). Download done (Download from Extract done. Listened with VLC done. So what’s the problem? Well, MP3s are for me.

Struck success about an hour into researching how to convert .ogg  to .mp3. The short answer is to use FFmpeg for the conversion. The long answer is follow the steps explained below. These steps are inline with my thought process. FFmpeg was quite interesting so this post should help me in the future whenever I need to do the same again.

Step 1: Download FFmpeg from the official FFmpeg website.

You’ll find links to external sites for builds of FFmpeg on different operating systems. Play on a Mac so downloaded the static FFmpeg binaries for Mac OS X Intel 64bit. Extract the archive and you’re left with an Unix Executable File name ffmpeg.

Step 2: Execute ffmpeg using Terminal on Mac.

The first gain is understanding how to actually execute the file in Terminal to start converting files. Simply cd into the same directory where ffmpeg is located. Then run the following command:


You’ll see a lot of text on screen, but nothing has occurred. The text is very similar to the block of text displayed at the top of the page of the download site from which you downloaded the Mac OS binary for FFmpeg.

Step 3: Move the ffmpeg Unix Executable File to the same directory as the audio files.

Executing ffmpeg like in step 2 only executes in the same directory. So you’ll have to move the executable files in the same directory where you have the audio files you want to convert. Instead, you could move the all the audio files in the same directory as ffmpeg.

Since I extracted the download archive, the directory created was antonio carlos jobim 1967 wave remastered 1988 ogg vorbi. So I moved ffmpeg into that directory.

Step 4: Convert .ogg to .mp3 using Terminal.

Almost there. The next gain is understanding what command to use in Terminal to convert just one audio file from .ogg format to an .mp3 format. Take some time and do some research, but ultimately you may end up at a page site that lists out multiple commands like this ffmpeg audio format conversions list.

Here’s the command for convert one file form .ogg to .mp3 with a bitrate of 320k.

./ffmpeg -i "01 Wave.ogg" -ab 320k -acodec libmp3lame "01 Wave.mp3"

And if you want to see the entire line in Terminal then it’s below which includes the directory I cd into.

Paris:antonio carlos jobim 1967 wave remastered 1988 ogg vorbi Andres$ ./ffmpeg -i "01 Wave.ogg" -ab 320k -acodec libmp3lame "01 Wave.mp3"

Step 5: Convert .ogg to .mp3 using FFmpeg in a batch.

The last and final gain is performing the conversion in batch. There are 10 songs in the album and I don’t want to type the command ten times. This requires yet more research on how to run a for loop in Terminal. Read a few articles and sure enough someone had already posed the question on how to bulk batch convert mp3 files to ogg via command line. Yes, I want to do the opposite conversion, but the command is the same. Simply transpose .ogg and .mp3 in the article. Also, the library for .ogg must be replaced with .mp3 library in the command and I wouldn’t have figured that out easily if it wasn’t for step 4.

Lastly, here’s the command to convert multiple files in batch from .ogg to .mp3 using ffmpeg.

for file in *.ogg; do ./ffmpeg -i "${file}" -ab 320k -acodec libmp3lame "${file/%ogg/mp3}"; done

And the same command, but including the Terminal prompt:

Paris:antonio carlos jobim 1967 wave remastered 1988 ogg vorbi Andres$ for file in *.ogg; do ./ffmpeg -i "${file}" -ab 320k -acodec libmp3lame "${file/%ogg/mp3}"; done

Don’t forget that there are many switches with ffmpeg and I later found out that the .ogg file’s metadata is lost upon conversion to .mp3 because I had not use the ffmpeg switch to keep in during conversion.

Mac Terminal FFmpeg Bulk Conversion .ogg to .mp3
Command line text for bulk conversion using FFmpeg.