Recording for Wedding Pre-Ceremony

If you have to use mp3 format, (rather than WAV), and file-size doesn’t matter to you, then use “insane” in all instances.
When starting from original audio, (not mp3), I can’t hear a difference between “extreme (~250kbps)” & “insane (320kbps)” mp3s. The advantage is “extreme” mp3 file will be smaller than an “insane” one , so you can get more “extreme” ones on a device than “insane” ones.

https://manual.audacityteam.org/man/mp3_export_options.html

Thanks. And .wav is preferable to mp3? Why?
Also, whats a good volume range to use in audacity. Is it best to be close to 0.5 with volume spiked, or closer to 1.0 and volume down? Is there any real difference?

mp3 employs lossy compression: file-size is reduced (usually by a factor of ~5) at the expense of sound-quality.
No compression with WAV, (but file-size will be much bigger than mp3).

Thanks. Lastly, what’s a good volume range to use in Audacity? Is it best to be close to 0.5 with volume spiked, or closer to 1.0 and volume down? Is there any real difference?

Theoretically using the full-range, +/-1, will gave better signal-to-noise-ratio.
However in practice using +/- 0.5 I don’t think anyone will be able to hear the difference.

If exporting as a WAV, should I use 16-bit or 32-bit? I am exporting from Audacity to WAV, not from MP3 to WAV, right?

If converting MP3 to WAV, do I make sure the MP3 is INSANE quality first? Does the delay in MP3 files matter?

I doubt anyone can hear the difference between 16-bit & 32-bit WAV.
NB: Some software cannot play 32-bit wav.

WAV => MP3 =>WAV is just going to cause generation loss. Cut out the middle-man.

Be careful with that.

MP3 is an end-user format. That’s the one you put on your iPod to go roller-blading or post to your podcast.

If all you’re going to do is listen to it, Nobody Cares. However, MP3 is a time bomb. If you intend to edit, produce, or cut down an MP3 into another MP3, the quality is going to get worse.

It’s insidious. If you make an MP3 and then make a WAV from that, you don’t have what you think you have. You don’t magically have WAV quality, you have a very, very well preserved MP3 with the compression damage burned in. If you then make an MP3 from that WAV, it’s going to sound like two MP3 compression damages on top of each other.

Master work and archives should always be WAV because you can make those into anything else with no loss in quality.

Koz

Formats.

44100, 16-bit, Stereo WAV is the format of music on an Audio CD. You can go a long way before you run out of quality and the ability to do production.

The video version of that is 48000, 16-bit, Stereo.

If you’re shooting Beyance’, the studio may use 96000, 24-bit, Stereo. That’s not recommended for casual users because your computer has to be able to run perfectly in real time at that higher speed and all your hardware has to be able to handle it.

Chances are not good that your Dell laptop with a Yeti microphone is going to be OK, no matter what the ads say.

Koz

Thanks all. So just go from Audacity file and export straight to WAV if WAV is what I want?

I did it as MP3 INSANE quality yesterday and think it sounds fine. Not looking from Grammy-quality; just need a clear sound to get me thru the wedding

I will NOT need to edit the MP3s at all. No further editing required. With that said, the Insane MP3 format should suffice? I incorporated 10 second pauses between tracks which should work nicely