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Chapter 16. Streaming Media > Streaming Media System Components

Streaming Media System Components

There are different streaming media systems, but they all share common underlying architecture. Media files are created and converted to a streaming format with a streaming media encoder, streamed to users by a streaming media server and played back on the user's computer using a streaming media player.

Encoders

Raw audio and video files are too large to be streamed across the Internet. Encoding software converts raw media files to a format that can be streamed by reducing the file size while attempting to maintain as much of the original quality as possible. To give you an idea of the task an encoder faces, consider the bit rate of CD audio. When audio is digitized, it is sampled 44,100 times a second, each sample being 16 bits long, one sample each for the left and right sides of a stereo signal.


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