Also, not able to export mp3 files

I installed audacity 2.0.1 from the dmg and am still unable to export mp3 files. I’m running Mac OS X 10.6.8. I downloaded the Lame file and installed it. When I try to export anything as a mp3 file, a /usr/local/lib/audacity/libmp3lame.dylib window comes up and I select it and hit OK. Another window comes up that says: “Could not open MP3 encoding library!” I’ve deleted the preference files as recommended in this forum, and restarted Audacity. Still the same massages.

Audacity is a great program except for this simple glitch which, I hope, can be solved. Thanks for any help in advance.


/usr is a hidden and sometimes protected location on some machines. The last time this happened to me, I exploded the libmp3lame.dylib file and put in in my plug-ins folder and pointed Audacity preferences to it. It’s been working ever since.


Thanks Koz, Please explain “…exploded the …lame file”, and which plugin folder did you put it in, Audacity’s?

You go here…

And then dig down into your computer type and then way down the lame install pages which gives you the option of downloading the zip version of lame, and not the one with the auto installer.

Download that and double click it. It will “explode” or decompress into a nice folder with libmp3lame.dylib in it ready to drag wherever you want.

Go > Applications > Audacity and drag the file over to the plug-ins folder.

Then you have to open Audacity > Preferences > Libraries > MP3 Export > Locate > Browse and point to it so Audacity knows where it is.

All this is assuming you got your Audacity from that same web page.


Koz, you are a master! Thanks, again. It works perfectly. I wonder why Audacity doesn’t put the file in the plugins folder in the first place? Just seems to me that it should be there in every version download.

MP3 Export is paid, licensed software by Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. It’s not free. To keep Audacity’s free model, you have to load the open source “lame” software product yourself. The location that the software installer uses is the subject of debate. That and there’s only 1.3 people working on the Mac system, so there’s only so much they can do.


Koz, I don’t understand! I didn’t have to pay for MP3 Export. So, what’s the point in having the user having to go through downloading etc.? If it’s open source why not incorporate it. Mac users are creative people, Audacity belongs with the Mac. I thank all the people who put this program together probably loved the Mac, but worked on a PC and didn’t realize what they were missing. I think the world is beginning to understand that the Mac system far outweighs the Windows system. Gates never had a clue except Klunky, Unstable and Slow. I guess it shows, I was a Mac user since Day 2.

LAME and Audacity are open source, but there are copyright claims on the MP3 format (I know that sounds as crazy as having copyright claims on lined paper or a trademark claim on a letter of the alphabet, but it’s a crazy world).

Two links that you may find answer your questions:
Short version in the manual:
Long version in the wiki:

And just when you think it can’t get any more surreal, MP3 isn’t its name. It’s real name is MPEG1, Layer 3. It’s a video format.