High-Definition Audio

What Does High-Definition Audio Mean?

High-definition audio (HD audio) refers to a high-bandwidth audio signal used in recorded music. Different software has different standards of high-definition audio, but in most of them the signals are modulated using the pulse width modulation method and sampled at a greater frequency than 44100 Hz, and a depth of more than 16 bits.

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High-definition audio is also known as high-resolution audio.

Techopedia Explains High-Definition Audio

The sound industry makes use of a high-quality audio for better quality music and other sounds. This is especially important where space is not an issue, hence large audio files, with large kBps are preferred. High-definition audio is used in commercial applications where signals are encoded such that there is a minimum loss of information of data and in some cases, the signal is enhanced by sampling at high frequency to increase the quality.

High-definition audio formats include FLAC, ALAC, WAV, AIFF and DSD. However, just because an audio file is stored in these formats, does not necessarily make it high definition.

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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.