Podcast sample rate

Christopher Woods christopher at custommade.org.uk
Mon Jul 17 09:19:12 PDT 2017

As far as I'm aware, the BBC's audio estate runs at 48 KHz (well, except 
the Archers studio - and probably a handful of other studios - for legacy 

Looks like podcasts are still encoded to 44.1 KHz via iBroadcast (the MP3s' 
encoder tag indicates ffmpeg (currently Lavc57.24)). Except where a podcast 
is generated programmatically from a broadcast programme (e.g. World at One 
on Radio 4), the podcast guide instructs to upload WAVs directly to 
iBroadcast. I suppose it must still have a separate encode and publish 
workflow from Audio Factory.

(I don't have anything to do with podcasts, mind...)

Years ago when they started, 44.1 was part of the defined spec for BBC 
podcasts and I presume nobody's ever really cared enough to change it. I'm 
listening to one at the moment and its audio quality is perfect fine.

iPlayer audio is provided / encoded through a different process so will be 
48, and also a higher bit rate (and AAC). Podcasts were designed to be 
listened to on average earbuds while on the go and have to remain 
compatible with devices potentially over a decade old. So, er, go figure.

On 17 July 2017 3:44:31 p.m. "RS" <richard22j at zoho.com> wrote:

>>From: Jim web
>>Sent: Monday, July 17, 2017 14:05
>>> In fact every BBC podcast I have seen, admittedly a tiny sample of the
>>> population of podcasts, has used a 44.1kHz sample rate.
>>Are there are recent examples I could get using GiP?
> I have a feeling that GiP support for podcasts has been withdrawn, but here
> are four recent examples which you can download directly.
> http://open.live.bbc.co.uk/mediaselector/5/redir/version/2.0/mediaset/audio-nondrm-download/proto/http/vpid/p058rwkw.mp3
> http://open.live.bbc.co.uk/mediaselector/5/redir/version/2.0/mediaset/audio-nondrm-download/proto/http/vpid/p057xbn0.mp3
> http://open.live.bbc.co.uk/mediaselector/5/redir/version/2.0/mediaset/audio-nondrm-download/proto/http/vpid/p058pxd2.mp3
> http://open.live.bbc.co.uk/mediaselector/5/redir/version/2.0/mediaset/audio-nondrm-download/proto/http/vpid/p058rm6r.mp3
> Three of them are Radio 4 and one Radio 3.  If you download the .m4a files
> using GiP and the following PIDs the sample rate is 48kHz, so the BBC is
> using both, which seems crazy.
> b08xx96m
> b08xcqwf
> b08wr7ss
> b08xcwz4
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