This MP3 wiki will explain the most important aspects of the popular MP3 audio format.
MP3 stands for MPEG-1 Audio Layer 3. It is a popular audio format which uses a type of lossy audio data compression.
The MP3 standard was laid down by the Moving Picture Experts Group. It received approval as an ISO/IEC standard back in 1991.
MP3 is the format popularly used in consumer audio players. It is also the format in which audio recordings are often stored online or offline.
The highlight of MP3 is acceptable video quality with a big reduction in file size. This can be owed to the efficient compression method it uses.
This MP3 wiki will explain how it works.
How Does MP3 Compression Work?
MP3’s small file size is a result of the compression method, as has been explained. So, how does the compression work?
It works by removing ‘unnecessary’ audio data from an audio track. When this data is removed, file size is reduced.
Removal of data results in loss of audio quality. This type of compression is called lossy compression to mean that there’s a loss in audio quality.
With MP3 this audio quality loss isn’t noticeable to most human ears.
MP3 File Size Reduction
File size is a concern when you need to store a huge volume of audio. So, how much file size reduction can you enjoy when you encode an audio file into MP3?
Here’s what happens when you encode an audio CD track and compress it to MP3.
Depending on the bitrate used, your file size will be reduced up to a ratio of 12: 1 or one-twelfth of the original file size.
This bitrate is commonly used for acceptable MP3 quality. Many have reported that this is audio CD-quality sound.
Audio can also be encoded into MP3 using a variable bitrate. In this instance, the bitrate varies during different parts of the audio track.
Quieter parts of the track will use a lower bitrate. Complex parts will use a higher bitrate.
This ensures that optimum audio quality is preserved.
Joint Stereo Mode
MP3 also uses the joint stereo mode to reduce file size.
In this mode, audio is not output to right and left channels as required in normal stereo mode.
Instead, audio is recorded onto a mono track. A separate channel then records the separation from the left to right channels.
In this way, the audio file size is reduced.
How to Open an MP3 File
MP3 is one of the easiest file formats to open. Almost all media players can open it.
Usually, you don’t have to install any additional software to play an MP3 file.
On a Windows computer, you can use the Windows Media Player to open an MP3 file.
Also, when you right-click on an MP3 file, you get various options to open it.
Most modern browsers like Chrome, Edge, Firefox and Opera can play MP3 files. All you have to do is launch the browser.
Then hit the CTRL + O keys. Select your MP3 and open it. Your audio file will start playing.
You can also open MP3 files easily via mobile devices like smartphones, tablets and ebook readers like Kindle.
Video devices like HDTVs, TV boxes and even DVD players can play back MP3. You would usually play back MP3 files through a flash drive.
You can easily convert MP3 to other popular audio formats. Most audio and video converters support the conversion of MP3 to popular audio formats.
Audio editors and video editors can do the job, too.
Online Audio Converters
In these days of fast Internet connection, you can easily convert MP3 files to popular audio formats.
Most of these converters offer free plans for the conversion service.
So, you don’t have to install an audio converter program on your computer.
Also, some of these services allow you to import audio files from cloud storage services like Google Drive, OneDrive and Dropbox.
An example of such an online audio converter is the Audio Online Convert.
This service allows you to convert MP3 to other audio formats.
Check out more options for online MP3 converters.
Editing MP3 Files
MP3 files can be edited. You can cut and join mp3 files. You can also extract a portion of an MP3 file.
This can be done with an audio cutter or video editor program. A free program you can use is Audacity.
The easiest way to edit an MP3 file is by using an online audio cutter service. Many such services are available for free.
You can do a search for ‘online audio cutter”
Here are some examples of MP3 cutters you can use.
You have learned the most important aspects of MP3 through this MP3 wiki. This page will be updated from time to time. Do visit again to get the latest updates.