Audible book export

How to export a audio book from Audible and save it without DRM for personal archival purposes.

Note: This does NOT crack DRM. It simply uses the users own encryption key (fetched from Audible servers) to decrypt the audiobook in the same manner that the official audiobook playing software does.


Everything described below is incredibly broken and does not work anymore.

As of 2023-09 I use a open source tool called Libation.

Export a book

cd ~/projects/github/audible-activator
source venv/bin/activate

# Get activation bytes (once)
./ -l "de"

# Remove DRM for archival purposes
ffmpeg -activation_bytes <ACTIVATION-BYTES> -i <INPUT>.aax -c copy <author>-<title>.m4b

Known issues

ffmpeg: mismatch in checksums

[mov,mp4,m4a,3gp,3g2,mj2 @ 0x7fadbc704cc0] [aax] mismatch in checksums!
[mov,mp4,m4a,3gp,3g2,mj2 @ 0x7fadbc704cc0] error reading header
/tmp/some_file.aax: Invalid data found when processing input

Apply workaround as per this comment on GitHub. Either audible-activator is broken or something else is strange, because this happens only for some files for me.

Initial setup

Setup audible-activator:

cd ~/projects/github
git clone
cd audible-activator
python3.10 -m venv venv
source venv/bin/activate
pip3 install -r requirements.txt

If this PR is not incorporated yet, do it manually

Install other dependencies

brew install chromedriver ffmpeg

# De-quarantine chromedriver
xattr -d /usr/local/bin/chromedriver