I wanted to be able to play audio books from Audible.com in my car. I don't have an iPod in this car, but my car stereo does have an audio input jack. I have a cheap MP3 player. So I thought I'd load an audio book to the MP3 player, to listen to in the car.
I tried using the DirectShow filter for .aa files, with multiple applications such as dbPowerAmp and GoldWave. It sorta worked, but some books got cut off a few minutes before the end. Consistently.
I tried burning to a virtual CDRW from iTunes. NoteBurner appears to work, but since the trial version only records 3 minutes of each track, I can't tell if it too suffers from the cut off at the end of the book. Other virtual CDRW programs simply were rejected by iTunes and by Audible Manager (old version that had CD burning support).
So I pulled out Nero 8, and burned a set of .nrg CD images. Then I used Nero ImageDrive to mount the CD, followed by dbPowerAmp Music Converter (dmc) to convert from the audio tracks to mp3.
I could have just burned real CDs, but a 12-hour, unabridged book is a big stack of CDs. The nice thing about using Nero is that it will burn the whole series of virtual CDs without intervention. It just burns image.nrg, image1.nrg, image2.nrg, image3.nrg, etc.
For the record: I purchased these audio books, and I will not "share" them with others. Shucks, I make my living by creating intellectual property -- I'm not going to be a hypocryte and steal someone else's IP.