If you want to cut music from YouTube or cut other audio files in MP3 format without loss of quality, you can use expensive software or the free mp3DirectCut. The freeware can cut and edit MP3 files because it neither decodes nor encodes, which prevents quality loss. In addition, mp3DirectCut works in real time and provides additional functions that simplify the recording and editing of MP3 files under Windows.
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Cut MP3 files without loss of quality
If you open a music or other audio file in the freeware mp3DirectCut on your Windows PC, it remains encoded, unlike some other editing software. The MP3 editor shows the audio track in a wave view, into which you can zoom in and out with the mouse wheel. You can also cut and edit tracks using mouse and keyboard commands. If you want to change parts of the audio track, you can mark them with the mouse and then cut, copy, paste elsewhere or edit the volume. In addition, further properties can be changed. So you can play sections faster, slower or in a loop and save them in real time. According to the manufacturer, this is quite fast, since the MP3 editor edits the original data. Accordingly, mp3DirectCut does not decode the MP3 file for editing and saves the subsequent encoding, so that the audio quality of the original is preserved and no loss of quality occurs.
Even more audio editing features
Despite the free license model, the freeware mp3DirectCut can not only cut MP3 files, but also offers other functions for editing MP3 files. For example, mp3DirectCut contains an ID3 tag editor for MP3 metadata, support for Unicode, AAC and Layer-2, batch processing, video visualization functions with MPEG and a high-speed recorder for recording external audio signals.
In addition, the MP3 editor can be completely controlled from the Windows command line, which allows the use in scripts. An automatic cutting function including batch processing is also on board, whereby so-called cue sheet files with important metadata help to split MP3 files into several individual files. So mp3DirectCut can detect pauses in audio recordings and divide longer recordings with several songs into individual tracks. If desired, the individual files created in this way can be tagged and named fully automatically.
Under Microsoft Windows you have to install mp3DirectCut normally and if necessary also the Lame MP3 Encoder if codecs are missing. The editing program can also be used on Linux computers if the Wine runtime environment is used. For recording and playing MP3s and AAC files you also need the appropriate codecs like “MP3-ACM” for MP3 and “libfaad2.dll” for AAC. Alternatively there is Ocenaudio or Audacity for editing audio files.