Currently, all songs purchased from the iTunes Store are iTunes Plus, which refers to songs in high-quality AAC format but don't have Digital Right Management (DRM). However, before 2009, iTunes Music was encoded in FairPlay-encrypted M4P format which cannot be played on unauthorized devices and computers, such as iPod shuffle, Sono, or other media players. If you have purchased some DRM-ed iTunes songs before 2009 and want to get the unprotected version of them, you will need to find a way to remove DRM from iTunes music.
The following guide will show you how to unlock iTunes DRM in 2 different ways: using a professional iTunes music DRM removal software - TuneFab Apple Music Converter and upgrading music to iTunes Plus.
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Part 1. Remove DRM from iTunes Music with Apple Music Converter
TuneFab Apple Music Converter is one of the best iTunes Music DRM Removal software that can remove DRM protection from iTunes music and Apple Music. With this tool, you can easily rip DRM from all protected iTunes music and save them as clean MP3, M4A, AAC, AC3, FLAC, etc.
Key Features of TuneFab Apple Music Converter
▪ Strip DRM from iTunes music to DRM-free file format.
▪ Support up to 10X conversion speed.
▪ Reset output settings like sample rate, bit rate, channel, etc.
▪ Support converting multiple iTunes songs at a time.
▪ Keep iTunes music ID3 tags such as title, artist, album, and more.
▪ Fully compatible with Windows, Mac, and the latest iTunes version.
Tips: If you want to remove DRM from iTunes movies or TV shows, you can use TuneFab M4V Converter.
Step 1. Launch TuneFab Apple Music Converter on Computer
Download the free trial version of TuneFab Apple Music Converter on PC. After installation, launch the software and you will see its main user interface. There are several different sections on the main interface: iTunes playlist, iTunes music library, output settings, etc.
Step 2. Add DRM-ed iTunes Music to TuneFab Program
Select "Library" from the Playlist section, and you will see the songs display in the right column. Pick the protected iTunes songs from the library by clicking the checkbox.
Step 3. Choose Output Format for Converted iTunes Songs
Go to "Output Settings" to select your desired output format, output folder, bitrate, sample rate, etc. To make sure that the output music maintains the best quality, you can choose M4A as output format, and set the bitrate as 256 Kbps and sample rate as 44100 that is identical to your original iTunes M4P music.
Step 4. Remove DRM from iTunes Music with One Click
Finally, click on the "Convert" button to start converting DRM-ed iTunes music to DRM-free M4A/MP3. The conversion process will be done within minutes.
Part 2. Unprotect iTunes M4P Music with iTunes Match
iTunes Match is an effective way to unprotect old purchased iTunes Music. It helps upgrade your previously purchased protected music to "iTunes Plus" AAC format. Songs re-encoded in this format are no longer DRM protected. With the iTunes Match subscription, you can re-download a DRM-free version of your purchased AAC music files from iTunes. To download the DRM-free version of your songs on iTunes, the tracks must be shown as Matched or Purchased in the iCloud Status column in your iTunes library. Also, they must still be available in the iTunes Store.
Note: If you still have a dozen of songs that are in the original "Protected AAC" format after going through all the iTunes Match procedure, this is because iTunes Store no longer offers these songs. In this case, you will not be able to get the DRM-free version of the song from iTunes.
But you can use TuneFab Apple Music Converter to convert these songs to DRM-free files.
Here are the steps to remove DRM from iTunes music with an iTunes Match subscription.
Step 1. Launch iTunes, then sign in to iTunes with your Apple ID and password.
Step 2. Go to "Music" and select the song or album you want to upgrade.
Step 3. Press the "Delete" key on your keyboard, then click "Delete Songs" in the pop-up message.
Step 4. Click the "iTunes Store" tab at the top of iTunes. Then go to the "Quick Links" on the right-hand side of iTunes, click "Purchased".
Step 5. Click "Music" in the upper-right corner of iTunes and find the songs from which you want to get a DRM-free version.
Step 6. Finally, click the iCloud Download icon on the song to download the DRM-free iTunes music.
With all the methods available, TuneFab Apple Music Converter is the most efficient way to remove DRM from iTunes music. You can convert all the purchased music to a DRM-free version with one simple click. And the 16X faster conversion will save much of the conversion time. With TuneFab Apple Music Converter, you don't need to get an iTunes Match subscription to download the DRM-free songs from TuneFab. Now, download the software and have a try.
Related Reading: How to Get Rid of Apple FairPlay DRM and Get More Freedom