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blog post Report Audio Quality on Uvumi.com

Marshall Stokes
Posted on Feb 2, 2010 - 20:30 by Marshall Stokes
Many of you have emailed us with questions and complaints about the quality of audio streams here on Uvumi. We have also noticed a number of comments throughout the site on this topic, so I will take this opportunity to explain what we do with your songs when you upload them to Uvumi.com.

When a song is uploaded to Uvumi, our servers transcode it to MP3 format using the open source codec known as LAME. We make two copies: one at 192Kbps, and another at 96kbps. If the song comes in at a lower bitrate than 192Kbps, we use the lower bitrate as our maximum.

The 96Kbps copy is used for streaming to listeners on Uvumi.com, and the 192Kbps copy is reserved for visitors who download the song, if the artist has marked the song as "downloadable" in their management interface.

Our decision to stream at 96kbps was strictly financial, as the costs of disk space and bandwidth, while relatively cheap compared with five or 10 years ago, are still high enough that this little difference really matters at this stage of the project.

But, we keep that "CD quality" copy on hand, which means that, in the future (read: when we can afford it) we have the option to create better-quality versions of the entire Uvumi music library for our streaming listeners, probably 128Kbps would be sufficient.

It has also come to our attention that many of you would like to use Uvumi to host even higher-quality copies of your songs. Well, we would love to do that! But once again, high density disk storage and servers aren't cheap, and until we figure out a way to generate some revenue (see: Ads Coming To Uvumi.com), we're going to have to stick with the system we have right now. When we can afford to expand, we envision allowing all artists to replace any of their songs with higher quality copies, so you can provide very high bitrate songs to your fans via download.

We hope that the quality of audio streams on Uvumi.com doesn't detract from your experience too much, and we appreciate your patience and support as we continue working to improve the Uvumi platform.

Older Post: Ads Coming To Uvumi.com Newer Post: Feb 3, 2010 - Updates Launched

Comments (4)

  • Left by worldblee, on Feb 3, 2010 - 16:02
    Cool, this is great to know. So I'm thinking 192K/44.1 MP3 files will make the best transfer to Uvumi since the low res version will be divided in two, which methinks should be a cleaner encoding than taking it from 256K or another bitrate.
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  • redshift9's picture
    Left by redshift9, on Feb 3, 2010 - 14:01
    I was wondering about this just yesterday. It's nice to know that you keep the higher quality audio files on hand for downloads/future use. Thanks for the explanation.
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  • Serin's picture
    Left by Serin, on Feb 3, 2010 - 7:08
    I hadn't noticed any problems in quality. Good to know it's being worked on, though.
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  • owori's picture
    Left by owori, on Feb 3, 2010 - 3:34
    Is there a problem with variable bitrate formats like ogg vorbis that optimize sound quality and file size?
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