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Computing (FOLDOC) dictionary
bit rate
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communications, digital signal processing (Or "bitrate") A
data rate expressed in bits per second. This is a similar
to baud but the latter is more applicable to channels with
more than two states.
The common units of bit rate are kilobits per second (Kbps)
and megabits per second (Mbps). In data rates, the
multipliers "k", "M", etc. stand for powers of 1000 not powers
of 1024.
The term is also commonly used when discussing digital
sampling and sample rates. For example, the MP3 audio
compaction algorithm is often set to ouput files with a
bitrate of 120 kbps. This means that the file contains an
average of 120 kilobits for each second of audio (900 KB per
minute). This compares with CD audio which is encoded at
44100 16-bit stereo samples per second or 1408 kbps.