How to Add Music to Video in Windows 10/Online for FreeBy Cecilia Hwung | Last Update:
Summary: As Windows Movie Maker is gone, how to add music to a video in Windows 10? Besides visiting the web archive page to install discontinued WMM program, you can use Windows 10 video editor app – hidden within the Photos app or searchable from the Start menu. For power users, you might also want to add multiple audio tracks to a video clip, and edit mp3 files to better fit in with the video.
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Think of traveling videos, vlogs, and all the recorded lovely moments you shared with friends and families. How about merging passionate musical waves in MP3, WAV, WMA, etc with your cliff-diving footage? Adding music is not a professional's concern. With a right tool at hand, you can easily add background music to a video.
A series of tutorials residing at the parts below present specific steps on how to add audio to video easily in VLC, iMovie, Shotcut, Premiere Pro, etc for anyone who needs to:
- Add music to a video quickly
- Add multiple pieces of music
- Apply fade-in and fade-out to the audio
- Swap the original audio to the one you love
- And more...
Adding the right kind of music can enhance the video. It helps to deliver your message profoundly and better engages the audience. We swing with the music while soaking in what's happening on the screen, and get focused when the melody suggests a turning point. Let's groove!
How to Add Music to a Video: Windows 10 Video Editor
Windows 10 has a hidden video editor right within the Photos app. It is designed for simple video editing, and works nicely if you only want to add one piece of background music.
Here is a step by step tutorial to add background music in Windows 10 video editor.
- Open photos app, and click Video Editor tab.
- Hit the blue button: New video project.
- Select videos already in the photos library, or import your video.
- Click background music or custom audio, if you want to add your own song, instead of stock music offered in this app.
- Drag the blue knob to decide where the music begins and ends.
- Click Done.
Tips: If you want to the cut to the beat, you can click background music and tick Sync your video to the music's beat. It only works with the stock music currently.
If you prefer to stick to Windows Movie Maker, or love to hack with VLC, we have you covered too. For advanced users, you can also use professional NLE such as Shotcut, FCP and Premiere. Please read on.
Windows Movie Maker: the Good Old Way
Ease of Use: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Download link: Microsoft no longer updates WMM, but you can Download and install Windows Movie Maker from Web Archive service.
Windows Movie Maker once was the video/audio editor software pre-installed on Windows that can help you add audio to video, which however was discontinued by Microsoft since January 2017. The official download page is no longer accessible, but you still can find the archived files somewhere else. The Windows Movie Maker download page we list above is one of the safe sites among what we've tested. Read the following example of how to add MP3 to video with Windows Movie Maker.
How to add sound to video in Windows Movie Maker:
- Download and open Windows Movie Maker.
- Load your video file by clicking Add videos and photos or simply dragging and dropping.
- Switch to Edit > Video volume > slide the handle to mute the original sound.
- Go back to Home > Add music > Add music from PC or find new music online.
- [Optional] Set start time under Options.
- [Optional] Trim music by adjusting the start- and end-point.
- [Optional] Enable Fade in and Fade out in slow, medium or fast mode.
- Choose Save movie in Home and merge audio and video with your preferred output settings.
VLC: Adding Music is One of the Many Possibilities
Ease of Use: ⭐⭐⭐
OS: Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android
Download link: https://www.videolan.org/vlc/#download
If you need a free program to nail the task, VLC, although best known as media player software, should be on your list. The good thing is, with audio filters like audio channel remapper, pitch shifter and volume normalizer built in, VLC allows you to add sound to video with rough control over audio quality. But you won't see any specific parameter adjusting settings. That makes sense. After all, it is a media player.
How to add audio to video in VLC:
- Open VLC media player, click Media > Convert / Save.
- Click +Add to load your video file in the pop-up Open Media window.
- Choose Convert in the dropdown menu of Convert / Save.
- Move to Settings > Profile > Edit selected profile.
- Switch to Audio codec, disable Audio, and then Save to mute the original audio.
- Go back to the main interface > Media > Convert / Save.
- Import your video clip by +Add.
- Re-enable the Audio option and Keep original audio track.
- Click Show more options > enable Play another media synchronously > Extra media.
- Load the audio you are going to add into video, click Select > Convert / Save.
- Browse to reset the destination folder and rename your file > Save > Start to add new audio.
Shotcut: Free Open-source NLE with Nice Audio Features
Ease of Use: ⭐⭐⭐
OS: Windows, macOS, Linux
Download link: https://shotcut.org/download/
Shotcut, best known for being an open-source free video editing software, is not light on audio editing. Surely you are allowed to add audio tracks in Shotcut and then sync and save into a new file. Better still, a set of audio filters are available for you to go further in audio effects finetuning.
How to drag audio to the timeline in Shotcut:
- Open Shotcut and create a new project.
- Set the project name and folder. C: is not recommended.
- Switch to the Playlist panel, drag and drop your video/audio clips there.
- Ctrl+I to add a video track.
- Drag the video clip in MP4, MKV, ProRes, etc to the video track in Timeline.
- Click the trumpet icon to mute the original sound.
- Ctrl+U to add an audio track.
- Drag the MP3 audio file to the audio track in Timeline.
- Merge video and audio in Shotcut by Export.
Besides Simply Adding Audio to Video, Shotcut
- Allows you to apply audio fade-in and fade-out in dBFS linearly.
- Use Gain / Volume filter to change audio with keyframes in non-linear mode.
- Reduce background noise by High Pass, Limiter and Compressor.
How to Add Music to a Video in iMovie
Ease of Use: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
OS: macOS 10.14.6 or later
Download link: https://www.apple.com/imovie/
In iMovie, you can add background music to your video directly, or you can add a new sound clip for your video. First off, let's get right to put background music on a video in iMovie:
- Select Audio tab in the top browser to work with it.
- Choose the music from Music libraries, Sound Effects, and GarageBand in the drop-down list of Audio tab in the sidebar. (Sidenote: you need to import audio files to iTunes first.)
Secondly, let's have a close look at how to mute your source video and customize a sound clip for it:
- Import media files to iMovie: add audio and video files to iMovie
- Drag and drop the video to the timeline
- Remove the sound from the background: right-click on the video > click Detach Audio in the drop-down list > delete the audio track from the timeline. There's zero audio left in the whole video.
- Add music to the video you just detached audio: in My Media, pick up the desired music clip you've imported and drag and drop it to the timeline. When you play over, the audio will start with the video.
- Adjust the volume a little bit: if, however, you notice that the audio volume level is a bit higher than expected, you can lower it down by dragging downward the line in the middle of the audio track. If you want the volume up, drag and raise the line up. There are two small dots in the beginning and end of the audio track. Extent it forward or backward, a curve will appear, which will create a fade-in or fade-out audio effect, making your video look more cinematic.
QuickTime is Another Tool for Mac Users
Ease of Use: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
OS: macOS 10.6.3 or newer
Download link: https://support.apple.com/downloads/quicktime
QuickTime is bundled with macOS, but it is more than just a media player in your Mac. Actually, the application covers basic editing features like trim, combine, split, flip, rotate, record your video and audio files, etc.. Given that you can combine MOV files and MP4 files in a trouble-free manner, to add background music to a video breaks you no sweat in QuickTime.
How to replace audio in video with QuickTime:
- Start with opening one video file with QuickTime.
- Choose File > Open File > import the audio file. Or, you can drag and drop the audio file to QuickTime (Sidenote: By doing this, the audio will be added under the video track and the audio file will overlay the video file).
- Hit the Start button, and both the video file and the audio file will be played at the same time.
- In QuickTime, you are allowed to add several video and audio clips, and each clip you added will be merged into a whole. You may rearrange the order provided you want the output be played in a specific sequence.
- You can trim the video clip to match with the audio: choose the clip > Edit > the Trim tab in the brower > drag the handle > the Trim button.
Import Music to a Video Project in Final Cut Pro X
Ease of Use: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
OS: macOS 10.14.6 or later
Where to get: Apple App Store
Final Cut Pro X, the 64-bit version is of Final Cut Pro, is a video editing program for macOS X. Some people dub it iMovie-Pro as it is very much similar to iMovie.
- Add one video file > detach audio.
- Pick up your background soundtrack and drag the audio file you want to add to the timeline.
- Fine-tune the volume level, clip length and fade-in fade-out effect of the audio file.
- -9.0 dB would be a recommendation in case you need to tweak the volume level.
- Fast way to trim the excessive audio clip length: locate the end of the video > keyboard command B > a blank video track will be created on the timeline > delete the blank video track and the excessive audio track at a go.
How to Add Background Music in Premiere Pro
Ease of Use: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
OS: Windows, Mac
Download link: https://www.adobe.com/products/premiere/free-trial-download.html
The timeline in Premiere is divided into audio tracks and video tracks. You can add numerous soundtracks, and adjust them conveniently. If you are new to this, please set up a Premiere Project first, and come back here to add songs to video clips.
1. Add songs and sound effects to Premiere.
Import your audio clips into the resource bin in Premiere. You can either drag-n-drop the clips or go to File > Import (Shortcut key: Ctrl+I)
2. Drag audio to timeline.
- To add the entire audio: simply drag it from the resource bin and drop it to the timeline.
- To add part of the audio to timeline: click on the audio in resource bin and it will appear in the source monitor. Click the in and out icon (displayed as curved brackets) to set in and out points. Hover your mouse until it turns into a hand-shaped icon, then drag audio to the timeline.
A: Resource bin. B: In point. C: Out point. D: Drag Audio Only.
Tips: If you don't want to keep the original sound in the video, right click on the clip and hit unlink. Then click on the A1 track, and hit Delete on the keyboard.
3. Cut and delete unwanted section of the audio.
- Make sure your audio ends at the same time when the video ends, otherwise, there will be a black screen when the audio goes on.
- You can also use the razor tool to cut any section of the audio clips and delete it.
Tips: If the audio lasts longer than the video, and you want to trim off the end part of the audio, and align it to the video precisely:
- Click on the playhead, press Shift and drag your mouse simultaneously, so that the playhead snaps to the edge of the clip
- Press ctrl/command + K, and it will cut right at the playhead.
- Click on last part and press delete on the keyboard.
4. Adjust the volume of background music.
- To adjust the overall volume of an audio track, drag that horizontal line up and down.
- To create music fade-in and fade out, use the keyframe volume function. Press down ctrl/command and click on the horizontal line to create volume keyframe. You can then drag those points up or down.
That "Sounds Good": Adding Audio Track to YouTube
YouTube videos with background music could be bliss or a disaster for viewers. A cheerful tone brings the summer vibe into your seaside vlog, while a loud music in a tutorial video drives people crazy. Think twice: do you really need to add grooves to your footage? If so, let's get lively and attack the day!
- To add background music before uploading: using editing software listed in the above part.
- To add music after uploading via YouTube Studio: follow steps below.
- Sign in to YouTube, and click CREATE next to your profile picture.
- Upload your video. Follow the instructions on the screen and go give your video an enchanting title and an informative description.
- Click on your video, and you shall see more managing options such as Details, Analytics, and Editor.
- Click the Editor from the left panel within YouTube Studio, then click on + Audio.
- Find a music that fits the mood and tempo of your video, and click ADD. You can use filters such as genre, mood, and length to speed up the selection process.
Note: you can also adjust the audio saturation to get the perfect volume. For instance, if you don't want the background music to be louder than people talking in the video, you can dial the button to favor original audio.
Can I add custom audio to YouTube video?
If you want to add your own music to YouTube video, you need a free video editor to nail the task. You cannot add custom music after uploading and publishing the video. Inside the YouTube studio, the only option is to choose one piece of stock music from YouTube Audio Library.
Guess you like: Top free video editors for beginners and pros >
How to Add Music to a Video Online: Kapwing
Ease of Use: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Kapwing is a handy tool if you need an alternative to video audio merger software for adding music to video online without watermark. The best part of Kapwing is that both video and audio editing is pretty smooth, although the file uploading is not finished yet.
How to add sound to video online on kapwing.com:
- Go to kapwing.com and click Tools in the navigation bar atop the page.
- Choose Add Audio to Video module.
- Upload you local video file for adding sound to.
- Enable Mute video to remove orginal audio track.
- Drag and drop an audio file into the audo uploading zone.
- Trim audio length and adjust the volume.
- Press Create button to start adding background music to video.
- Once the video processing is done, download or share your video online.
Tips when adding music to video with Kapwing
You will see an online audio cutter built in when adding music to video online with Kapwing, which allows you to trim audio to your preferred length. Better roughly cut off a piece of audio track in Timeline firstly, and then use arrow key to set the start and end point accurately.
Merge Audio and Video Online: Voice2v
Ease of Use: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Another way to simply add background music to video online without audio editing is to use Voice2v. The music adding would be as easy as merging audio and video files together. But if you need to adjust the music length, make sure you do it in advance. Because there are no options of trimming audio, applying filters like fade-in and fade-out, or even changing audio volume inside the Add Music to Video module.
How to merge audio and video online on Voice2v:
- Go to https://voice2v.com and choose Add Music to Video in the menu bar.
- Move to the upload area and click to browse and select a video file.
- The video uploading kicks off. It is a process that will take some time.
- Meanwhile, upload an audio file.
- Click the arrow button to proceed to ADD THE AUDIO TO THE VIDEO NOW.
- Download the video when the message "Your video has been created successfully!" pops up.
Add Music to Video Online on Pixiko
Ease of Use: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
If you need an online audio and video merger coupled with a breadth of features to help with video audio editing, Pixiko would be the best option among those three. Such a clear interface makes it straightforward to mute video, add sound to video, trim audio track, add text, etc. But there is a limit to the size of video audio clips you can upload for merging together. And you will have to pay to unlock the maximum 500 MB limitation.
- Open https://pixiko.com > TOOLS > Add Music to a Video.
- Click Get started! to get into the online music adder.
- Drag your video clips to the blue area for loading up.
- Click Volume under the Edit uploaded video section and move the slidebar down to zero.
- Click +UPLOAD to add the audio track.
- Change audio volume and click RENDER to start adding music to video.
How to Add Audio to Video on iPhone and Android
Besides using desktop software on Windows or Mac, there are some practical solutions for you to add music to a video on mobile phones. In the following, we will have a look at how to merge audio and video with mobile programs.
Add Music in Instagram Story
- Click your profile photo to post an Instagram Story.
- Record the video or import video from your library.
- Click the sticker icon on top right.
- Click music and browse to choose a song you like.
You shall see a nice player-shaped icon with the background music playing in your Instagram Story.
Add Trendy Music in TikTok Video
- Open up TikTok on your mobile phone > click on Me in the bottom right corner.
- Click the plus button in the middle and start recording your own TikTok video.
- Click Sounds in the top area of the screen, search for the music you would like to add for your video, and click the red check-mark in the rear of the music profile.
There you go, the song you choose has been added to your video!
Warm Note: If you want to add the specific part of the audio you choose, you can hit the Trim icon appears in the right sidebar to cut out your desired part, then hit the check-mark.
At this moment, it's time for you to do the real-time editing with the add-on background music. Once you've finished the video shooting, just hit the Next button and post the creation to your TikTok channel.
How to Add Audio to Video in KineMaster
Download KineMaster on your iPhone or Android phone. Here, we take KineMaster on iPhone for example, and show you steps to add audio to video in this mobile application.
- Launch KineMaster on your iPhone, then choose an aspect ratio for your final product on the welcome window.
- Import the media to KineMaster: you can switch to the Documents application, and share the media file to KineMaster.
- Click on Music browser, choose the music you just imported and click on the plus icon to add it to the timeline.
Save the video you just created. Now, you've got a video with background music.
Bonus Tip: You can extract the audio from one video and add the audio to another video you imported.
- Choose the layer tab.
- Media > find the video you want to use.
- Click on Extract Audio > then the audio track will be extracted from the video, and both audio track and video track will be added separately on the timeline > choose the video track > click Delete on the sidebar.
Fantastic Music and Where to Find Them
Besides raiding and sifting through free background music sites, there are many ways to grab your music. Let's hit the road.
YouTube Creative Commons is Your Music Bank
You are only one-click way from a plethora of free music in YouTube. Looking for dope Stomp Intro Music? Search it and make sure the Creative Commons is ticked in the search filter.
Revive That Music Wave from Old CDs and Videos
Internet is a large reservoir of media, but it might fail to store our best memories. Dust off your old CDs and video disks, digitalize that very piece of media to your hard drive, and you can enjoy adding music to your home videos for private use.
Also read: How extract mp4 from videos
Put on Your Music Ninja Hat and Create Your Own Melody
Everyone can be a master of making music — chill out, we count in whistling — and you can always record your playing of a guitar, banjo, and singing. Go handle the recording task to iPhone voice memos, or resort to a sophisticated desktop audio recorder.
Tips on Adding and Editing Background Music
With video editing software listed above, as well as numerous online sites with stock music, adding soundtracks to a video should be a no brainer. The only thing that begs the question is, how to pick the perfect music and how to edit it to the groove of a video.
Don't Pick up a Random One
Bad music can ruin your footage. Think of the message you want to deliver in the video, and make sure the music tracks match the moment they're in. Think of the mood you want to create, is it something cheerful, romantic, or dark? You can filter and play around with music under different genre and mood in YouTube Audio Library as a reference.
Let Music Tracks Match the Moment They're In
Edit with a pace in mind so that the tempo of the background music gets along with what's happening now in the footage. In return, sometimes, you can use the flow of the music as a guide to edit the video to a certain pace.
Build up an Emotional Arc
Monotonous background music lulls your audience to sleep, while a soundtrack with ebbs and flows keeps stimulating the viewers. You will want the music to move to the highest point when the video is in a dramatic part, and ease away when the scene is calm.
Add Music to Video without Re-encoding?
Is it possible to replace background music or add audio to video without re-encoding? The answer would be YES as long as you don't change any video settings. With 44,100 samples carried per second (audio sample rate standard used for CD and MP3), there is no need of audio decoding for so-called accurate I-frame seeking in video editing. You just mux video and audio tracks together. That's why you should be able to add music to a video without re-encoding in most video/audio mergers.
Stumble into such questions as: is it possible to add audio to a video without re-encoding, cut video without quality loss and watermark, or merge video without re-encoding? See the answers below.
Merge Audio and Video without Quality Loss?
Firstly you should know that re-encoding means data recalculation and recompression, which requires more time and always leads to loss of quality to a certain degree.
As we mentioned above, there won't be a re-encoding process if you add audio to a video by simply merging video and audio files together. Accordingly, there shouldn't be any quality loss. However, the answer is little more than theoretical, because there are too many variables or even bugs sometimes.
How Loud Should Background Music be in a Video?
According to Premiumbeat, the overall audio level should be normalized between -10db to -20db, with a slightly difference for the type of audio included. Background music, for instance, falls in the range of -18db to -22db, as opposed to -10db to -20db for sound effects.
Can I Replace the Audio on My YouTube Channel?
Yes. That's the simple answer. But there might be different scenarios. If the audio you mean to replace is the music track you already added via YouTube Studio, then you can use the swap tool provided by YouTube. Another case is to replace the original sound in the video with background music, and the method is to dial the button to favor music via YouTube's built-in editor.