Audio File Formats
  • MIDI
    • The MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) is a format for sending music information between electronic music devices like synthesizers and PC sound cards.
    • MIDI files do not contain sampled sound, but a set of digital musical instructions (musical notes) that can be interpreted by your PC's sound card.
    • The downside of MIDI is that it cannot record sounds (only notes). Or, to put it another way: It cannot store songs, only tunes.
    • The upside of the MIDI format is that since it contains only instructions (notes), MIDI files can be extremely small. The example above is only 23K in size but it plays for nearly 5 minutes.
    • Sounds stored in the MIDI format have the extension .mid or .midi.
  • WAVE
    • The WAVE (waveform) format is developed by IBM and Microsoft.
    • It is supported by all computers running Windows, and by all the most popular web browsers.
    • Sounds stored in the WAVE format have the extension .wav.
  • MP3
    • MP3 files are actually MPEG files. But the MPEG format was originally developed for video by the Moving Pictures Experts Group. MP3 files are the sound part of the MPEG video format.
    • MP3 is one of the most popular sound formats for music recording. The MP3 encoding system combines good compression (small files) with high quality. Expect all your future software systems to support it.
    • Sounds stored in the MP3 format have the extension .mp3, or .mpga (for MPG Audio).
Editing Audio
  • Audacity is a cross-platform sound editor, allowing you to edit and record audio files. It also has a number of plugins available, including LAME mp3 encoder.

Converting Between File Formats
  • Audacity can be used to convert audio files.
    • Upload the file then choose to export in one of the formats, like WAV, MP3 or Ogg Vorbis. While Audacity does NOT support MP3 files, it can very easily support them by using the LAME encoder.
  • Any Video Converter
    • Provides popular audio formats including MP3, M4A, OGG, WAVE, WMA in addition to popular out video formats including AVI, WMV, MPG, MP4, MKV, SWF, FLV .


Video File Formats
  • AVI
    • The AVI (Audio Video Interleave) format was developed by Microsoft.
    • The AVI format is supported by all computers running Windows, and by all the most popular web browsers. It is a very common format on the Internet, but not always possible to play on non-Windows computers.
    • Videos stored in the AVI format have the extension .avi.
  • Windows Media (WMV)
    • The Windows Media format is developed by Microsoft.
    • Windows Media is a common format on the Internet, but Windows Media movies cannot be played on non-Windows computer without an extra (free) component installed. Some later Windows Media movies cannot play at all on non-Windows computers because no player is available.
    • Videos stored in the Windows Media format have the extension .wmv.
  • MPEG
    • The MPEG (Moving Pictures Expert Group) format is the most popular format on the Internet. It is cross-platform, and supported by all the most popular web browsers.
    • Videos stored in the MPEG format have the extension .mpg or .mpeg
      • MPEG1
        • This format is often used in digital cameras and camcorders to capture small, easily transferable video clips. It's also the compression format used to create Video CDs, and commonly used for posting clips on the Internet.
      • MPEG2
        • Commercially produced DVD movies, home-recorded DVD discs, and most digital satellite TV broadcasts employ MPEG2 video compression to deliver their high-quality picture.
      • MPEG4
        • Used for both streaming and downloadable Web content. It's the video format is used in camcorders and cameras.
  • QuickTime
    • The QuickTime format is developed by Apple.
    • QuickTime is a common format on the Internet, but QuickTime movies cannot be played on a Windows computer without an extra (free) component installed.
    • Videos stored in the QuickTime format have the extension .mov.
  • Shockwave Flash
    • The Shockwave format was developed by Macromedia.
    • The Shockwave format requires an extra component to play.
    • Videos stored in the Shockwave format have the extension .swf.
  • ASF
    • File format used by Windows Media, especially meant for streaming media.
    • Many videos from United Streaming are asf.

Editing Video
  • Click here for more information on video editing.

Converting Between File Formats

Any Video Converter
  • The most renowned free video converter for converting video files between various formats, with fast converting speed and excellent video quality
  • Provides popular out video formats including AVI, WMV, MPG, MP4, MKV, SWF, FLV and popular audio formats including MP3, M4A, OGG, WAVE, WMA.

Working with Flash Files
  • Downloading flash files
    • Download Helper -
      • a free Firefox extension for downloading and converting videos from many sites with minimum effort
      • Download Help Manual
    • You Tube Downloader
      • software that allows you to download videos from YouTube, Google Video, Yahoo Video, and many others and convert them to other video formats


  • VideoLAN (VLC)
    • Free and Open Source cross-platform media player
    • Excellent choice for any sort of multimedia, not just audio. It can play an astonishing array of formats, both video and audio - including Flash
    • Supports a large number of multimedia formats, without the need for additional codecs
  • K-Lite Mega Codec Pack
    • Collection of codecs and DirectShow filters. It contains everything you need to play all your audio and video files


  • DivShare
    • Offers free online hosting of documents, images, videos, and music.
    • Create slideshows, audio playlists, Flash video, and online document viewers that can be embedded anywhere


  • Many hosting sites provide an embed code that allows files to be embedded in a webpage. An advantage of embedding video and audio files is that the file will play in the embedded player.