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Welcome to the fre:ac project Print E-mail
Sunday, 11 July 2010 14:00

fre:ac is a free audio converter and CD ripper with support for various popular formats and encoders. It currently converts between MP3, MP4/M4A, WMA, Ogg Vorbis, FLAC, AAC, WAV and Bonk formats.

With fre:ac you easily rip your audio CDs to MP3 or WMA files for use with your hardware player or convert files that do not play with other audio software. You can even convert whole music libraries retaining the folder and filename structure.

The integrated CD ripper supports the CDDB/freedb online CD database. It will automatically query song information and write it to ID3v2 or other title information tags.

Features (click an entry to see details)

  • Converter for MP3, MP4/M4A, WMA, Ogg Vorbis, FLAC, AAC, WAV and Bonk formats

    fre:ac converts freely between all supported formats. No matter if you need WMA to MP3, MP3 to WAV, M4A to MP3, WAV to MP3 or any other conversion, fre:ac supports any combination of formats.

  • Integrated CD ripper with CDDB/freedb title database support

    The integrated CD ripper will convert your audio CDs to files on your hard disk. It supports all of the formats available for regular audio file conversion. fre:ac can query the CDDB/freedb online CD database to find artist and title information prior to ripping. No need to enter track names manually.

  • Portable application, install on a USB stick and take it with you

    fre:ac can be installed on a USB stick or external drive so you can take it with you and use it on any computer. It will also store its configuration files on the portable drive. That way it will always start up with your custom settings.

  • Multi-core optimized encoders to speed up conversions on modern PCs

    The MP3, MP4/M4A, Ogg Vorbis, FLAC, AAC and Bonk encoders integrated with fre:ac make use of modern multi-core CPUs, so ripping and converting speeds get a real boost. You will save time and get the job done quickly.

  • Full Unicode support for tags and file names

    fre:ac provides full support for the Unicode character set. That way it can handle not only Latin scripts, but also Japanese, Cyrillic, Arabic or Indian. If you like music from all over the world, you can tag your files correctly.

  • Easy to learn and use, still offers expert options when you need them

    fre:ac's user interface is designed to be intuitive so you will be able to use the basic features without any trouble. It still offers advanced options when you need them so you will be able to go beyond simple ripping and format conversion using fre:ac.

  • Multilingual user interface available in 40 languages

    fre:ac comes with a multilingual user interface and is currently available in 40 languages (English, German, French, Spanish, Spanish (Latin American), Italian, Japanese, Korean, Chinese (simplified), Chinese (traditional), Vietnamese, Russian, Ukrainian, Bulgarian, Polish, Serbian, Croatian, Czech, Slovak, Dutch, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish, Estonian, Lithuanian, Greek, Turkish, Hungarian, Romanian, Portuguese, Portuguese (Brazilian), Hebrew, Arabic, Afrikaans, Basque, Esperanto, Galician, Catalan and Valencian). It can be translated to other languages easily using the 'smooth Translator' utility that is included in the distribution.

  • Completely free and open source without a catch

    fre:ac is available for free without any adware or other foul things. However, the project relies on your support to be able to push the development further. If you like this software, please consider making a donation. Click on one of the icons in the donation section to the right to support the fre:ac project with a donation.

fre:ac 1.1 beta 1 is coming December 15th Print E-mail
Saturday, 14 December 2019 18:18

Feature development for fre:ac 1.1 has been completed and preparations for a beta release in mid December are being carried out right now.

The new release will be a major feature update over the current 1.0.x release series. Highlights among fre:ac 1.1 features include support for macOS and Linux, parallel processing, multi-channel audio and a tag editor. In total, the 1.1 release series will introduce more than 80 new features.

We are still looking for volunteers to update the translations for sevaral languages for the 1.1 release series. If you speak any of the following languages and would like to contribute a translation update, please refer to this GitHub issue or contact

Afrikaans, Arabic, Basque, Cantonese, Catalan, simplified Chinese, Esperanto, Estonian, Finnish, Galician, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Korean, Norwegian, Spanish (Latin American), Ukrainian, Valencian, Vietnamese

You can also contribute completely new translations of fre:ac. Please contact in this case.

Hotfix for fre:ac on macOS 10.15 Catalina Print E-mail
Sunday, 13 October 2019 21:47

The fre:ac v1.1 Alpha 20190423a hotfix has been released to add support for macOS 10.15 Catalina.

In previous releases up to 20190423 it's not possible to select any files or folders in file open/save dialogs. It looks like this is caused by a broken open/save panel programming interface in macOS Catalina. Chances are that this will be fixed in a future macOS update. In the meantime, the 20190423a hotfix implements a work-around for this incompatibility.

The update is available in the downloads section.

Continuous AppImage builds now available Print E-mail
Thursday, 30 May 2019 12:43

The Travis CI system now creates AppImages for every commit to the fre:ac source repository. This means that you can now try the latest changes right after they land in the repository without having to build fre:ac yourself, for example to verify fixes or test new feature additions.

AppImages are distribution independent Linux packages that bundle most dependencies and should work on any modern distribution. To start an AppImage, just make it executable after download and run it:

chmod a+x freac-continuous-linux-x86_64.AppImage

Packages are provided for the x86, x86-64, ARM and ARM64 system architectures making it the first time that fre:ac binaries for ARM/ARM64 systems are made available outside of the Snap store.

Get your AppImage at the downloads page or from GitHub.

fre:ac v1.1 Alpha 20190423 Print E-mail
Wednesday, 24 April 2019 20:44

fre:ac v1.1 Alpha 20190423 has been released and is now available for download!

This release adds support for ripping with more CD drives than there are CPU threads available. So if you have thousands of discs to archive and some spare drives, this is for you.

Other important improvements and fixes in this release are:

  • Added support for PulseAudio output on Linux
  • Added support for drag & drop in the tag editor
  • Improved interoperability of playlist files with VLC
  • Improved handling of cue sheets referencing multiple files
  • Fixed crash when showing freedb multi-match dialog
  • Fixed float samples processing with Core Audio encoder
  • Fixed MP4 output issues when input and output files are the same
  • Fixed decoding of 24 bit WMA Lossless files on Windows 10
  • Fixed several issues handling Opus files
  • Fixed several stability issues and hangs

Upgrading to the 20190423 release is strongly recommended for users of previous alpha releases. All users of the stable release of fre:ac are encouraged to try this alpha instead. Please report issues on the GitHub issue tracker or by email to

The new release is available in the downloads section.

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