Audio Optimization – 5 Tips to Optimize Audio Files
At some point or the other, every one of us has tried to learn how audio files work. This information might seem unimportant but in fact can come handy when you record music, create a podcast or optimize your music library. There are various factors that affect the audio quality and file size where you might have to perform basic sound editing, add some digital effects enhancements or apply several techniques such as audio file converter to optimize your sound files. Here are 5 tips to optimize your audio files:
To capture sound and convert it to digital data, you cannot just record the full sound wave. Instead you will have to take snapshots periodically of this sound over time. You get an approximate recreation of the original sound when you play all of it back in sequence. Each of these snapshots is called sample and the interval between each of these snapshots is called the sample rate. Faster frequencies will produce more accurate recordings but they also require more data to store each second of the recorded sound.
Most of us confuse between sample rate and bitrate. Sample rate is how often the snapshots of the sound are taken and bit depth is how much data is being recorded during each snapshot. Bitrate is how much sound data is being processed actually per second. The higher the bit rate value is, the more data is captured per sample and this leads to a more accurate recording at the expense of more space required storing that data. The sound data gets lost if the bit depth is reduced too much.
Stereo vs. Mono
Stereo means two channels while Mono means one channel. These two channels in a stereo audio file is usually referred to as the right and left channels. When using a pair of headphones, you will be hearing one of the stereo channels in one ear and the other stereo channel in your other ear.
If you are listening to a mono audio file, then you will hear the same exact channel in both your ears. The easiest way to cut down an audio file size in half is to convert it from stereo to mono. Mono is always preferred for voice-only recordings for this particular reason.
When working with WAV files, the only way to reduce the file size is by interfering with one of the above settings- bit depth, sample rate or the number of channels. For all other formats, compression is the biggest factor in an audio file size when using audio file converter.
There are two types of compressions- lossy compression which removes unnecessary data from the audio file and this data when once discarded cannot be recovered.
The other type of compression is the lossless compression which takes an audio file, packs it down as much as possible using mathematical algorithms but requires to be decompressed at the time of playback which will require more processing power. In this case, no actual data is lost. For optimal file sizes, always go with lossy compression.
Once you have decided to go with the lossy compression, you will have to decide the file format which is best for you, the most popular ones being MP3, AAC and OGG. Whichever format you use, you will end up compressing to a target bitrate.
The Last Words
Understanding these 5 tips will help you to decide the best way to record and compress podcasts or music which you have created. Not only this, but these tips will also help you in deciding the kind of music formats that you need to purchase or the kind of streaming services that you have to use or the SoundCloud downloader to be used.