recording quality comparison


I recently started recording songs with a smart phone that has pretty good sound system, I would like to max the quality of the songs recorded, but I am confused by kHz and kbps, after trying to google what they meant.

i’m trying to compare these 2 formats:

.wav at 22.05kHz 16Bit 352.8kbps

.mp3 at 44.10kHz 16Bit 192kbps

Could someone give me a crash course as to what kHz and kbps represent and which is the most important? If not, just tell me which one gives better sound and I’ll be happy :wink:


In this particular case kHz is the sampling frequency. Digital audio files cannot contain any frequencies greater than half the sampling frequency. In your example, the WAV file would not contain any frequencies above 11 kHz.

kbps means “kilo bits per second” and is a measure of how big the file is, and how much bandwidth it would take to stream the file in real time. In your example, the MP3 file could contain frequencies all the way up to 22 kHz since it has a sampling rate of 44.1 kHz (but probably cuts off at 20 kHz or a bit below that). 192 kbps, in this case, tells us how much compression was applied to create the MP3 file. Since an uncompressed 44.1 kHz 16-bit stereo file has a bit rate of about 1400 kbps, we’re looking at a compression ratio of about 7 to 1. If it is mono, then the compression would be about 3.5 to 1.

Since the WAV file in your example has a bit rate of 352 kbps, it is a mono file.

Which one is better? In this case, I’d go for the MP3 since it at least can contain the entire audible frequency range. The WAV will probably sound “dull” or lacking in high frequencies.

For more information see this page in the Audacity manual:

By the way, are you using Audacity?

– Bill