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MP3 is a lossy audio file format used by all of Valve's engines, and is available in all first-party titles. While engine limitations prevent it from being used for everything that WAV files can be used for, its smaller file sizes make it suitable for non-looping music or incidental ambient sounds in a soundscape.

Warning.pngWarning:Using GoldSrc or Source 1's default implementation of MP3 in a commercial game requires paying for the Miles Sound System license. Consider implementing an alternative, such as Ogg Vorbis.

Recommended minimum bitrates

Unlike WAV, MP3 supports arbitrary bitrates, independent of sample rate and channel count. While this improves scalability, going below certain bitrates will result in noticeable quality degradation. Below are recommended minimum bitrates for the sample rates supported by Source Source (Source 2 Source 2 supports Wikipedia icon additional sample rates).

Sample rate Mono (1 channel) Stereo (2 channels)
11025 Hz 32 kbps 64 kbps
22050 Hz
44100 Hz 64 kbps 128 kbps
Tip.pngTip:These are just minimums. If you have the space to spare, you can go up to 320 kbps for higher quality audio! Setting the bitrate to double the values listed here will result in a less aggressive low-pass filter (at least in Wikipedia icon LAME).

See also

External links