What are audio formats?

There are two associated terms: containers and codecs.


– The music or audio file we have with us is in the form of “container“.
– For an audio file, it would contain a combination of audio and metadata information related to the audio.
– The “container” is the file format used to package together the audio and metadata information.

– Some common examples of container formats are:

Note: For a video file, the container would package together the video, audio and metadata information.

– The codec is basically the software used to encode and decode(an encoded audio).
– Some examples of popular codecs are:
VP8, AAC, H.264, Vorbis and Theora

The browsers basically decide which audio files they can decode and therefore we need to provide multiple encoded audio files for the browser to choose from.


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