Types Of Media Files

Audio files, video files, digital files, they all are different types of media files. We will discuss various types of media files further in this article. But first you should know that each file has certain characteristics and features. Sometimes you might have encountered that the image you want to view or a video you are trying to play in our computer system is not playing. This is because of the simple reason that the type of media file you are trying to play is not supported by your PC. You might need to upgrade your PC or change the file type. So, one should know about some of the popular audio, video and other various types of media files.

Audio Files- these files contain sound or audio which you want to hear. There are many formats in which you may create your audio file. The various formats are discussed here:

* WMA (Windows Media Audio) – this is one of the old audio formats included in the various types of media files and it was created by Microsoft for Windows Media Player. Its compression format was specifically designed by Microsoft and hence it cannot be converted into any other file. This audio file provides decent quality of audio and its audio is noticeably different than any other audio types.

* Moving Pictures Experts Group, Audio Layer 3- generally known as MP3 is one of the finest audio types. Its audio quality is said to be very good. Audio compression for MP3 files was created in Germany where perceptual coding for the audio was used to compress CD sound quality. Hence it has become one of the universal types of media files which is most commonly used.

After discussing the main audio files, let us see what video files have in store for us-

Video Files- all the digital video files have two layers- upper layer and lower layer. Upper layer or outer layer is called as container which wraps the audio and video codecs in the inner layer. A video file is generally differentiated according to the container in which the codecs are stored. Some main files which an individual should know about are-

* AVI- they come with the extension ‘.avi’. Avi format is generally present in the video cameras which are inexpensive and it works well for the purpose of playing back. The main problem with the avi files is that they cannot be stored in large sizes so that the quality could be maintained.

* MP4- they have the extension .mp4. This file format is generally supported by all playback softwares and hence it is most common in use.

* ASF or WMV- with a .wmv extension, Microsoft developed it for windows media player. You will have no problem in playing this video as Windows and MAC both have pre installed Windows Media Players.

* Flash- all the YouTube videos are in the Flash format with .flv extension. To play these videos you need a flash player installed on your PC or Laptop.

These are some types of media files which are most common in use.