How to Play MP3 and AAC Files on a Nintendo 3DS

You can listen to and even edit audio files on the 3DS

Did you know the Nintendo 3DS can play music in MP3, AAC, and other formats? Follow these steps to learn how to play music or audio recordings on your 3DS.

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How to Play Audio on a Nintendo 3DS

Before you begin, you'll need:

  • A Nintendo 3DS
  • An SD Card (one is included with the Nintendo 3DS)
  • Music files in MP3 or AAC format
  • A PC with an SD Card reader
  1. With the Nintendo 3DS turned off, remove the Nintendo 3DS SD card from its slot. The SD card slot is located on the left side of the device. Open the covering for the SD card slot, push the SD card to free it, then pull it out.

  2. Insert the SD card into a computer that contains the music files you want to transfer to the Nintendo 3DS. The computer must have an SD card reader. You can also use a USB-to-SD card reader.

  3. If a menu asks what you want to do with the removable media, open the folder to view the files. If the menu doesn't appear automatically, navigate to the drive using My Computer (PC) or Finder (Mac).

  4. In a separate window, open the folder that contains the audio files you want to transfer. Then, copy and paste (or drag and drop) the files to the SD card.

  5. When the music is transferred, remove the SD card from the computer.

  6. Insert the SD card into the Nintendo 3DS. Make sure the power is turned off.

  7. Turn on the Nintendo 3DS.

  8. Select Music and Sound on the bottom menu screen.

  9. Using the d-pad, press down until you reach the folder marked SDCARD. Press the A button to select your uploaded music from a menu.

Playlists and More

You can assign your Nintendo 3DS music to playlists. When you play a song, select Add on the bottom screen, then select playlist or make a new one.

You can also manipulate sound files. When a song is playing, tap the buttons on the bottom screen to change the song's speed and pitch. You can also filter it through a Radio option, remove the lyrics with the Karaoke option, add an Echo effect, or convert the song to an 8-bit chiptune. Use the L and R buttons to add more effects, including claps, snare drums, meowing, barking, and more.

Pull the rope on the bottom screen (or use the Up and Down buttons on the d-pad) to assign a different graphic to move to your audio output. There's a lot of retro love here, including a graphic that's reminiscent of a title from the Game & Watch series, and the characters from the NES classic Excite Bike.

When your Nintendo 3DS is open, push the Right and Left buttons on the d-pad to shuffle through your playlist.

When you close the Nintendo 3DS, the music continues to play through your headphones.