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How to Listen to a Music CD on the Computer

Updated February 21, 2019

Listening to a music CD on a computer is a very common way to listen to music. Listening to music while you are working can help some people focus on the task at hand. For others, it is simply a convenient, affordable way to listen to their music without the expense and hassle of a home audio system. Whatever your case may be, listening to music on a computer is a fairly simple task that requires very little technical skill or special equipment.

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  1. Purchase speakers that are compatible with your particular computer. Many companies manufacture speakers and audio systems that are intended to connect to the 1/8-inch audio output on the back or side panel of most computers, though you may be able to use powered speakers not specifically built for desktop purposes with a special 1/8-inch to RCA cable. However, you should avoid speakers that require an amplifier for computer listening, as computers generally have low output volumes.

  2. Download a program that will allow you to upload, store and listen to music CDs if your computer does not already have one. Most computers come with a program like this when they are sold, but you can download programs like iTunes from Apple for both Macintosh and PC computers free of charge on their websites.

  3. Open your CD drive with the button on your keyboard or computer tower. Insert the CD, and close the same way you opened it.

  4. Open your music player if it does not open automatically. If you downloaded a program to play music, you may have to find it in your hard drive. In the future, you can set your music player to open automatically when a CD is inserted by clicking on the "Edit" tab at the top of the screen, followed by "Preferences" and then "Import Settings."

  5. Find the area that shows that an audio CD is in your CD player once the music player has opened. Generally, this area is on the left side of the screen, though this varies from music player to music player.

  6. Press the play button on the first song. In most cases, the next song will play automatically, but if it doesn't, you can change your playback settings in the "Settings" menu.

  7. Tip

    In many programs like iTunes, you can choose to import your CDs onto your hard drive so you can listen to the recordings without having the CD present. This is a very convenient feature found in most music players, but remember, the information is stored on your hard drive, so if you don't have much free space left, it may not be worth it.

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Things You'll Need

  • Desktop computer speakers
  • 1/8-inch to RCA cable (if necessary)
  • CD
  • Music player program

About the Author

Christopher Godwin

Christopher Godwin is a freelance writer from Los Angeles. He spent his formative years as a chef and bartender crafting signature dishes and cocktails as the head of an upscale catering firm. He has since ventured into sharing original creations and expertise with the public. Godwin has published poetry, fiction and nonfiction in publications like "Spork Magazine," "Cold Mountain Review" and "From Abalone To Zest."

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