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Thread: MP3 Bitrate Question

  1. #1

    MP3 Bitrate Question

    I rip a lot of MP3s, I always do VBR (Varial Bitrate) highest quality setting. They always come out fantastic. My question is, when you get a MP3 from somewhere on the internet, let's say you get two versions a 192 CBR and a 320 CBR or VBR. Sometimes the 192 version will sound better, more fuller, and louder. And it will be approx 3MB less in size. Is this due to the CD that it came from, or the ripping software that was used or something?

  2. #2
    Hardware guy Super Moderator FastGame's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Blasters worm farm
    320 CBR would be the highest quality MP3 and should sound the best.

    As for files D/L from the net it depends on the ripper, encoder, whether they were normalized or not (and if they were was it lossy vs lossless),'s hard to know how other people do things.

    Lame Wiki sums up how MP3 should be.

  3. #3
    Precision Processor Super Moderator egghead's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2002
    In Your Monitor
    IMHO - I only use VBR as it will compress accordingly to the dynamics of the songs you are encoding and thus will produce the smallest file size and I always use max.

    It is important to understand that most consumer MP3 encoders will use joint stereo during compression and that tends to wash out the drums. almost all mo3's from the net are encoded in joint stereo (128kbs is joint by default)and do not represent the actually engineered quality of the music since the encoder remixes the stereo field. You can check this using winamp under "view file info" and right beside 44,000khx it will say either stereo or joint stereo. You want stereo as both channels are encoded independently. Joint stereo squashed the frequencies together until an audible is past a threshold and thus will pass to the appropriate speaker. drums do not pass this and thus will always sound phased.

  4. #4
    Junior Member Spoonman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Quote Originally Posted by mightymo View Post
    Is this due to the CD that it came from, or the ripping software that was used or something?
    I agree with everyone who posted before me and I just want to add that sometimes people do really dumb things when enconding and sharing mp3 files.

    Some folks seem not to understand the concept of lossy encoding and they think that if they take a 128 Kbps mp3 and then encode it into a 320 Kbps mp3 they will get better quality. So in this case it really is a matter of source.
    "Oh, sorry, I was taking life seriously!" - Bill Hicks

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