1. Register NOW and become part of this fantastic knowledge base forum! This message will go away once you have registered.

Lowest acceptable bitrate for streaming?

Discussion in 'Recording' started by Dino-, Nov 13, 2007.

  1. Dino-

    Dino- Guest


    I just came across this forum and looks like there's lots of great info here.
    Hopefully I'm posting in the right forum.

    I was wondering what is the lowest acceptable bitrate I could use
    to stream musicians music without compromising the quality too much.

    I have a membership site that allows musicians to upload and stream music
    and managing bandwidth is a priority.

    When a musician uploads a song, no matter what bitrate they upload we'll
    be converting the bitrate to a standard one for streaming using ffmpeg.

    So I though I'd look some suggestions here about what bitrate this should be cut down too. I still want to be have decent quality but cut down the file size as buch as possible.

    Thanks in advance =)

  2. HansAm

    HansAm Active Member

    I cant listen to anything bellow 128kbps. Even that hurts.
  3. bent

    bent No Bad Vibes! Well-Known Member

    FYI, Soundclick's HiFi streams are 128k.

    It sounds like their LoFi streams are 32 or 64k max...
  4. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Guest

    Acceptable results can be had at 96 kilobits per second if you don't want to go the 128 route.

    The beautiful and always segmented
    Ms. Remy Ann David
  5. Kapt.Krunch

    Kapt.Krunch Well-Known Member

    If ffmpeg is reconverting it, wouldn't all control be out of your hands, no matter what, if its conversions lessen quality any? 192 is the lowest that I consider acceptable enough for anywhere close to keeping most of what sounds OK. 128 is grainy to me, but OK for background stuff that I'm not paying attention to.

    How does ffmpeg convert MP3, and what effects does it have on it, is what I'd be wondering? If it lessens is further, would it make sense to send a higher quality file? All I got through my scant search for ffmpeg is that it's more an A/V app, and I don't have time right now to dig deeper.

    Anyone know how it handles things? Now he got me curious.

  6. Dino-

    Dino- Guest


    Thanks very much for your responses.

    I listen to sirius sat radio streamed over the net at 32K and it sounds pretty good on my stock laptop computer speakers but I'm sure if the sound engineers of those songs were to listen they would have a very different opinion =)

    It's good to know about Soundclick's HiFi 128 stream, thanks.

    Also great to know that you would find 96 acceptable. Thanks too.

    I don't know that much about ffmpeg, I only know what my programmers have explained to me and I've done bit of research and have lots more to do. My understanding is you can set whatever bitrate you want the mp3s to be outputted at and have complete control. ffmpeg is a server side library installed on my server which will do the conversions on the fly and can covert files into many formats including mp3s.

    Codecs are something I need to more research on but its also my understanding (someone please correct me if I'm wrong) that ffmpeg won't degrade the quality of the mp3 beside of course lowering the bitrate if it is configured to do so.


  7. bent

    bent No Bad Vibes! Well-Known Member

    I have Sirius as well.

    I love it, I believe it is the wave of the future, can't live without it (baba-booey, babba-booey, babba-booey to ya'll!), but I hate-hate-hate the way it sounds in my car!

    It's worse than 128k MP3s, and I HATE 128k MP3s!

    It's fine for talk, which (being a sound guy and all) is pretty much all I listen to :twisted: , but horrible for music.

    But, I grin and bear it, and wait for the technology to improve, because the selection there is 567098^10 times better than the crap radio here in Central Florida!
  8. bent

    bent No Bad Vibes! Well-Known Member

    If I had a dime for everytime I've clicked on a local radio station only to hear 'Gimme Back My Bullets', or 'Slow Ride' I'd have $19347.56 !

    Edit> Additionally, I don't think that FFMpeg is intrinsically going to degrade the sound any more so than the act of degrading the source post upload, which is what you are going to do on the server side anyway...
  9. Where'd you get the six cents? Earning interest?
  10. bent

    bent No Bad Vibes! Well-Known Member

    Yeah, too much interest in Vodka, I suppose! :lol:
  11. Dino-

    Dino- Guest

    Thanks for all your replies.

    What I'm thinking that I'll built in the option for users to upload a hifi and lowfi versions and choose what version gets delivered to the musician's customer after purchase. Also they can monitor their bandwidth usage so this might be an answer.




Share This Page