24 to 16 bit audio conversion

By | April 5, 2021


Bits refer to digital word length that describes a signal at any time. The higher the bit depth, the exponentially higher scores are available in the word length. In sound, 24-bit is the standard for recording, as it provides greater dynamic detail and headroom to avoid clipping. However, before inserting a CD, you need to convert recordings to 16-bit format.


Dithering is an important process when converting from a higher bit depth to a lower one. The process makes digital truncation errors less noticeable to the human ear by introducing low level noise which effectively masks this distortion. In addition, you can often choose the sound attenuation profile for dither to emphasize different frequencies. The effects of dither are not always immediately noticeable.


Actual conversion is a simple process that can be accomplished in a digital audio workstation or wave editor. If you want to convert the 24-bit file to 16-bit, just add a dither plugin as the last effect on your main track and bounce or turn the sound into a new 16-bit format file of your choice. Bit depth describes the dynamic range of a digital audio file. Particular care should be taken when converting a 24-bit audio file to 16-bit to ensure the highest possible quality.