What is Sampling?
Sampling is the way that audio is converted from analogue to digital (binary) format so that it can be stored, modified and understood by computers. Because computers work on the principle of two states - on and off - they are unable to comprehend the billions of possible states in analogue signals. Sampling works by noting down the amplitude of the signal at regular intervals to create a digital sound file.
There are some limitations to sampling. If we were to create an exact copy of the original sound file in digital form we would end up with a huge file. to reduce the file size we can change two things: the sample rate (measured in Hertz (Hz)) and the bitrate. The bitrate is basically the number of potential values of the amplitude, which increases with the number of bits in the binary phrase (hence the name Bit Rate.) If there are more bits in the binary measurement of the amplitude, the file will more closely represent the original analogue format. Likewise, measuring the amplitude at more frequent intervals will give a higher quality file that is closer to the original.