Close up of a keyboard.

How Good is MP3 Quality?

A picture of a computer folder icon connected to some headphones.One of the primary goals of MP3 was to reduce the file size of audio tracks to enable more music to be stored in a given amount of memory. To achieve this the audio data was compressed using a form of compression known as ‘lossy’ in which data is discarded, or ‘lost’, forever. In fact a 128 kbps MP3 file contains less than one tenth of the original data a CD version of the same track would contain. Consequently, with over 90% of the original data missing, it’s surprising how good 128 kbps MP3s sound.

I remember being surprised when I first met someone who had no records, only CDs. Now I know people who have no CDs, only MP3s. The debate still rages over whether CD audio is better than vinyl, but MP3 is certainly inferior to them both. Consequently there must be a large number of young people who have never heard high-quality audio.

Maybe future generations will rediscover how good music can really sound when it is played from an uncompressed source into a decent stereo system.

If you want music on the move there is nothing wrong with MP3s, but if you want to listen at home and really enjoy every last nuance that has gone into the performance and recording, then it has to be CD.

For more information on this topic see the related articles:

CD vs MP3 Sound Quality and CD kbps

 


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Just arrived on this site:

May 29, 2017. New this month is a selection of six Royalty Free Radio Jingles.

April 30, 2017. After a half-year break from adding new material to this site, I've added an article / review on Headphone Holders.

Sept. 29, 2016. In the final part of how to design and build a DIY Music Production Desk, I show the finished product, and provide further information on cost, construction time and more.

Aug. 30, 2016. In Part 4 of how to design and build a DIY Music Production Desk, I talk about stainng and varnishing.

July 12, 2016. This month, in Part 3 of how to design and build a DIY Music Production Desk, I detail the construction process.

June 16, 2016. This month, in Part 2 of how to design and build a DIY Music Production Desk, I look at the preparation needed..

May 30, 2016. This month sees the start of a series on how to design and build a DIY Music Production Desk. Part 1 this month looks at the design process.

April 29, 2016. This month I have added a short article on Trumpet Psychology to the Musicians' Corner - an essential read for aspiring professionals.

March 29, 2016. This month the Selected CD Reviews section has been updated with four additional audio files.

Feb. 24, 2016. A new photo has been added to the Gallery of a Valentine's Day concert I played at this month, accompanying various artists.

Jan. 14, 2016. New in the Reviews section this month is a look at PMC's TB2 Nearfield Monitors.

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Sometime Somewhere...

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A relaxing Smooth Jazz CD. Listen to extracts of all 12 tracks now.

 

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