The following audio file formats are supported:
- .WAV files: 16 bit mono or stereo (Pro edition also supports 24 bit, 32 bit and 32 bit floating point files).
- .GJM files: 16 bit mono using lossless compression (Pro edition also supports 24 bit).
- .GJS files: 16 bit stereo using lossless compression (Pro edition also supports 24 bit).
- .AIF files: 16 bit mono or stereo (Pro edition also supports 24 bit, 32 bit and 32 bit floating point files).
- .MP3 files: 16 bit mono or stereo files using lossy compression.
- .SAM files: 16 bit mono headerless raw data files.
- .AEM files: contain references to audio files to play. .AEM files are application-generated (see Understanding Audio Editing).
- .LST files: pre MultitrackStudio 5 equivalent of .aem files. These files can still be read.
The Mac version can also open existing .aac, .ac3, .aifc, .caf, .mp4, .m4a, .snd, .au and .sd2 files. Modifying these files is not possible.
WAV files can be used with almost any program that supports audio. You need a WAV file to create an audio CD.
GJM/GJS files use a compression algorithm that works best if the audio signal doesn't contain loud treble parts. This works well for multitrack recording since tracks typically have many silent or soft parts so the file size can easily be reduced to about 70% of its original size.
Note that sound quality isn't impaired in any way by the compressing action: if you save a .WAV file in .GJM format and then save that file in .WAV format again you get exactly the same file.
AIF files are similar to WAV files. They're widely supported on Mac computers, but rare on Windows.
MP3 files use a lossy compression algorithm that degrades sound quality. The resulting file size is 3..9% of the original size. This makes MP3 the format of choice if you want to publish your songs on the internet, or if you want to send them via email.
Every time a new MP3 file is created the audio quality can be chosen (Medium, High or Very High). High and Very High quality files use the full samplerate (44.1 or 48 kHz), Medium quality files will use half the samplerate (22.05 or 24 kHz).
An MP3 encoder is required in order to create MP3 files. You can search the web for such a file.
Windows: The 32-bit version expects a 'lame_enc.dll' file in the C:\Program Files\MtStudio folder (C:\Program Files (x86)\MtStudio on 64 bit Windows). The 64-bit version expects a 'lame_enc64.dll' file in the C:\Program Files\MtStudio folder. If there's no dll file any ACM codecs which are on your system will be used. The ACM codec that comes with Windows usually supports creating medium quality files only.
Mac: A 'libmp3lame.dylib' file is expected in the user's Library/Application Support/MultitrackStudio folder. You can achieve this by dropping the libmp3lame.dylib file on the main window.
Note that MP3 is NOT the format of choice for multitrack recording: not only does sound quality suffer, the MP3 encoding/decoding process consumes a lot of processing power as well.