LAME (Lame Ain't an MP3 Encoder) is an open source project of an audio codec, similar to the MP3 codec. The LAME codec is constantly being developed and improved. It is now one of the most sophisticated audio codecs and can compete with other commercial codecs in sound quality and data transfer rate
. The technical refinements of LAME are based on models of psychoacoustics. For example, to optimize file size and sound quality, LAME operates in several modes: available bit rate (ABR), variable bit rate (VBR), and constant bit rate (CBR). With the variable bit rate, the highest sound quality is achieved at bit rates between 270 kbit/s
and 220 kbit/s. At bitrates from 180 kbit/s the quality is described as high and at bitrates between 140 kbit/s and 160 kbit/s the quality is described as good.The different modes are preset and can be called directly.
LAME is also suitable as a learning tool for MP3 and can be downloaded free of charge from the net.