How to Create A Cappellas From an MP3 Song

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If you have ever wanted to make a remix of a song, you know how frustrating it is when you don't have the master tracks like professional DJs and producers. Learn the phase inversion method to create your own a capellas.

Things You'll Need

  • Audio editing software MP3 file from which to extract an a capella Instrumental version of the above MP3 encoded at exactly the same bitrate

Making an A Capella

  • Open your audio editing software and load the original MP3 and instrumental tracks one below the other. The order is unimportant.

  • Line up the two tracks as closely as possible, using the visual peaks as guidelines. Playing both tracks at once can help you align them properly.

  • Select the instrumental track (depending on your program, this could mean simply clicking a button next to it or highlighting it) and look in the effects menu for the "Invert" option. Invert the instrumental track, then go back to display both tracks; notice how the peaks and valleys of the instrumental track are now directly opposite the corresponding peaks and valleys of the original MP3.

  • Zoom in as close as possible on either track to fine-tune the alignments. Make sure the files are exactly aligned; again, playing both tracks will help you determine if you need to make alterations and let you hear when the music has been canceled out to leave the a capella as clear as possible.

  • Save your file when you're satisfied with the a capella. In most programs, you can do this by selecting "File" and "Save As..." The resulting MP3 will be vocals only, leaving you with a custom a capella to use with your project.

Tips & Warnings

  • Because your original MP3 and instrumental tracks must be encoded at exactly the same bitrate, your best option is to rip them directly from the CD single, if the single includes both files.
  • This phase cancellation method will not work with every song, and some might have better results than others, so consider it part of a set of tools to create your own a capellas. The original song and instrumental version must have been originally encoded at exactly the same bitrate; if not, the audio "peaks and valleys" will not align properly, and the inversion method will not work.

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