Adding music or video streams to your website is a definite plus
for revenue generation. Audio-video streams serve two purposes.
Primarily, audio and video streaming is used for entertainment.
A more practical use of audio-video streaming is for revenue
generation by using this technology to promote and demonstrate
Normally, professional website designers are leery of adding
multi-media streams to a website. However, the spread of
high-speed internet connection throughout the world has finally
removed the barrier for the use of multi-media streams.
In this article, let us deal exclusively with audio streams.
Audio files have different formats. The most popular among these
audio formats are the MP3 and MIDI sound format. The question
is, “what exactly is a MIDI and an MP3 and what are the
differences?” Below is a collection of sound file formats
together with their descriptions to help you decide which one to
use in your website.
MIDI is a music file type that is considerably lightweight when
it comes to the size of the file. The reason for this is that
MIDI utilizes the built-in devices in the sound card of your
computer. Of course, sound cards don’t sound the same so playing
one MIDI file on two computers simultaneously may produce
slightly different results. Another problem of MIDI files is that
they sound mostly like ring tones of older model cellular
phones. Having this installed in your website may give it an
amateurish feel. You definitely don’t want to be labeled as an
amateur especially when you’re selling something. On the plus
side, because of their small size in terms of kilobytes, people
who use 56kbps modems to connect to the internet will be able to
appreciate the speed at which your website loads into their
MP3 is an audio file that is highly compressed to achieve a
smaller file size. For people using DSL internet connections,
downloading a 5MB MP3 file will most probably take less than a
minute. For the slower 56 kbps modems, it takes approximately 3
to 5 minutes to download a single song with average playing
time. Because of its compressed nature, the sounds produced by
MP3 files are not as good as those you hear from your CD.
Furthermore, you will have to “loop” a music file if you want it
to play continuously in the background while people surf your
website. MP3 files are very difficult to loop. The biggest
disadvantage of using MP3 files is that they require MP3 player
programs. Once you enter a website with MP3 background music,
your Windows Media player or Real Player might open
automatically to play the file.
The best sound file format in terms of quality is the WAV file
format. Using WAV format to record your audio will give you
recording studio quality audio. The BIG PROBLEM of WAV is its
file size. Even with a DSL or cable internet connection, your
browser will have a hard time loading a web page using WAV for
its audio stream.
Familiarity with flash files is an advantage when trying to
incorporate audio streams into your website. To make the music
play continuously, you will have to perform the process of
looping. Flash files can be used with either MP3 or WAV but,
only WAV files go through the looping process without any
To your success,
P.S. As you can see there are many different ways to add
background music to your web pages and you don’t have to worry
about slow loading pages if you choose the right file format.