What are the different digital audio formats out there?

Digital audio formats are the ones that allow us to listen to music and various audios through our devices, such as computers or mobile phones. If you want to know more about What are the different digital audio formats existing ?, please read the following.

But before getting started, your best bet would be to opt for some of the best free music players for PC, which will be needed to play some of the formats we will mention below.

What are the different digital audio formats out there?

We call all those digital audio formats multimedia containers in capable of storing audio files. The truth is, there are many types of digital audio files.

But we could organize them in three main categorieswhich are uncompressed audio formats, lossless compressed audio formats, and lossy compressed audio formats.

Uncompressed audio formats

When we talk about uncompressed audio formats, we are referring to audio files that have not undergone compression processes. This means they are usually from the highest quality possible, although their weight is usually quite considerable.


This audio format was developed by Microsoft and IBM, allows recording of 44100 Hz and 16-bit audio. Likewise it is the audio format found in many CD distributions.


The Apple-owned AIFF format was developed in 1988 and would be the equivalent of WAV, as it shares many similarities including its size, which is very similar. It is also a formato lossless widely used, essentially on Apple computers.

What are the different digital audio formats out there?

Lossless compressed audio formats

Lossless compressed audio formats are the most recommended file type for enthusiasts, as they dynamically compress audio files without compromising on quality. Thanks to this you get an audio file of less weight, but with an exceptional sound quality.


It is one of the most recommended if you are interested in sound quality, it is a lossless compression format. In which you get less weight, but the quality is not compromised. Without a doubt, FLAC is the most recommended for audiophiles and lovers of good sound.


We could say that the ALAC format is the equivalent of the FLAC, as they are quite similar. In any case, ALAC is a format belonging to the company Apple so it's not free like its counterpart.

Lossy compressed audio formats

The so-called lossy or audio compression formats are all those in which an encoding process is carried out to greatly reduce the size of the audio files. In any case this involves a noticeable loss of quality, some of the most popular formats of this type are:


Probably the best known audio format, MP3 is a format lossy compression audio, which was released in 1993. Its advantage is its low weight, but it's fair to point out that the audio quality isn't the best.

In fact, its weight makes it perfect for mobile devices, which is why it is very common. To use it, it is best to use some of the best music players with equalizer, to take full advantage of this audio format.


AAC was born trying to replace MP3, it is also a lossy compression format, but in general the audio quality is usually higher than that of MP3. The format has become popular as it is often used for iTunes digital audio distributions.

In fact, the format is available in iTunes, so if you have an iPhone mobile, we recommend the best apps to play music and songs, which will help you to play files of both this format and the ones mentioned in this article.

What are the different digital audio formats out there?


M4A is a file container, also used for audio files. The format is slightly better than MP3, being quite similar to AAC.


Like M4A, Ogg is a container for digital media files, which also serves to contain audio. As for audio, the Vorbis codec, a lossy compression codec, which some point out is better than MP3.

In addition to all the above and for lovers of different audio formats, if you have problems with advertising when playing music, we recommend some of the best players on Android without advertising, to have a much more enjoyable listening.

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