How to convert 24-bit 88200Hz to 16-bit 44100Hz


Maybe I’m not using the right search terms, thought someone would have asked this by now…

How do I convert 24-bit 88200Hz to 16-bit 44100Hz?

Can’t find it in the help file either (Google appears to be useless for this one too)?

Is this possible with audacity?


  1. Import the track into Audacity (“File menu > Import > Audio”, or just drag the file into a new empty Audacity window).
  2. Set the Project Rate to 44100 (lower left corner of the main Audacity window).
  3. “File menu > Export” and select “WAV (Microsoft) Signed 16 bit PCM” as the export format.

On exporting, if you are prompted to enter Metadata, that is optional (few programs can read Metadata in WAV files). Fill in the metadata form if you wish, or just click the OK button to continue with the export.

Thanks Steve, appreciate your help…

Any thoughts on dithering/not dithering during a sample rate conversion from 24-Bit@88KHz to 16-Bit@44.1KHz?



When converting to a lower bit format (less bits per sample) there will be rounding to a near value. That is called “quantize error”, and if you don’t do anything about it the quantize error produces harmonic distortion. Applying dither prevents the harmonic distortion by randomizing the last one or 2 bits in special ways, but the downside is that the randomisation produces a small amount of noise (hiss). So you have a choice between a small amount of harmonic distortion, or a small amount of hiss. At normal listening levels either of these effects are barely noticeable. Personally I find the hiss less obtrusive than the harshness of harmonic distortion, so I prefer to use dither.

Sample rate conversion from 88 kHz to 44.1 kHz is less of an issue. Audacity uses a world class resampling library, so changing the sample rate is virtually perfect within the audio range.

Thanks again for your time Steve, appreciate your help


I’m trying to convert a folder containing 6x 24-bit/96000 FLAC to 16-bit/44100 FLAC using Steve’s method.

However, when I select Format>16-bit and Rate > 44100 then Export Audio and then check the properties of the converted files, they don’t match the 16-bit/44100 I selected i.e. 1193/96000! It’s as if the files are still 24-bit and then the re-encoding is on top of that, which inflates the file sizes.

Help appreciated, thanks!

Audacity will set the project rate of a new project to that of the first file imported into it, (in your case 96kHz).
You have to go into Audacity preferences to override this insanity …

Hi Trebor, thanks for replying.

I just reviewed the settings and the Project Sample Rate was already set to 44100Hz.

Then you just need to specify the bit depth when exporting as FLAC

If you keep the original file name for the 16-bit 44.1kHz versions you’ll need to save them in a different location (e.g. different folder) than the originals.

Hi Trebor

I tried everything you said to do and the file sizes/bit rates are unchanged.

if you want to reduce file-size by reducing the bit-depth,
don’t change the bit depth there …

Just specify the (16) bit-depth when the “export audio” window appears.

Hi, did exactly that, files still same size and bloated.

I’m not sure what’s going on… It works for everybody else…

[ EDIT ] - Sorry Kabuu Audio Editor is for Windows. But i assume there is something similar for Linux.

If you are converting files without any editing, Kabuu Audio Converter is a lot easier to use. Once you’ve set up your output format and output folder it’s just drag, drop, and click. And you can convert multiple files at once.

And you can check the file format with MediaInfoOnline.