Linux: Extract Audio From Video File (Video To Mp3)

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How do I extract audio from video file such as .avi/.mpg/.flv in Linux and UNIX and convert it to .mp3 file?

You can use mplayer which is a movie player for Linux and UNIX. It can play most MPEG/VOB, AVI, ASF/WMA/WMV, RM, QT/MOV/MP4, Ogg/OGM, MKV, VIVO, FLI, NuppelVideo, yuv4mpeg, FILM and RoQ files, supported by many native and binary codecs. You can watch VCD, SVCD, DVD, 3ivx, DivX 3/4/5, WMV and even H.264 movies, too. The same tool can be used to covert or extract audio from files. The syntax is as follows:


mplayer -dumpaudio -dumpfile output_filename.mp3


  1. -dumpaudio : Dumps raw compressed audio stream to ./stream.dump (useful with MPEG/AC-3, in most other cases the resulting file will not be playable). If you give more than one of -dumpaudio, -dumpvideo, -dumpstream on the command line only the last one will work.
  2. -dumpfile filename.mp3 : Specify which file (filename.mp3) MPlayer should dump to. Should be used together with -dumpaudio / -dumpvideo / -dumpstream.

Task: Extract Audio From .AVI File

Type the command as follows to extract audio from clip.avi to clip_track.mp3:
$ mplayer -dumpaudio -dumpfile clip_track.mp3 clip.avi
You can play extracted audio with mplayer command itself:
$ mplayer clip_track.mp3

Task: Extract Audio From VCD or DVD Track

The following command will extract audio from vcd track # 4:
$ mplayer vcd://04 -cdrom-device /dev/sr0 -dumpaudio -dumpfile /tmp/track04.mp3
The following command will extract audio from DVD track # 4:
$ mplayer dvd://04 -cdrom-device /dev/sr0 -dumpaudio -dumpfile /tmp/track04.mp3
You can extract track 5 to 10 using the bash for loop as follows:

for i in {05..10}
  mplayer vcd://$i -cdrom-device /dev/sr0 -dumpaudio -dumpfile /tmp/track$i.mp3

Task: Extract Audio From Stream

Use the following syntax:
$ mplayer -dumpstream -dumpfile /tmp/stream_03.mp3


Posted by: Vivek Gite

The author is the creator of nixCraft and a seasoned sysadmin, DevOps engineer, and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. Get the latest tutorials on SysAdmin, Linux/Unix and open source topics via RSS/XML feed or weekly email newsletter.

5 comment

  1. The current method as of the day 20th June 2013 works fine
    I just did few dumps that way and hey every one of them took like one second each
    GUI programs would probably do it longer, impressive

  2. It didn’t work for me..
    Trying to rip .mp3 audio from a Flash video..????
    It creates the file there is just nothing in there (well 4.6mb) but 0sec duration.??

    1. the manual said: -dumpaudio Dumps raw compressed audio stream to ./stream.dump (useful with MPEG/AC-3, in most other cases the resulting file will not be playable). So, I guess your audio codec isn’t mp3(MPEG audio)

  3. I downloaded the mplayer binary for Mac OS X. I would like to extract an mp3 file from an avi file, but I don’t see how to do it, since the downloaded program,
    “MPlayer OSX” doesn’t work on the command line.

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