How Does Bitrate Affect Video Quality

How Does Bitrate Affect Video Quality?

When editing and uploading videos on your computer or mobile phone, you’ve probably run into the word ‘bitrate’ a couple of times. Many individuals are usually more familiar with the term ‘resolution’ than bitrate. How does bitrate affect video quality? We’ll find out.

Just like video resolution, video bitrate highly affects the overall quality of a video. Therefore, it’s considered a major component when defining the general quality of the video you’re about to export before uploading it. 

Being a very critical element in the field of video editing, we are therefore going to check out How does bitrate affects video quality. We are also going to look at the difference between video resolution and bitrate; and how the two terms relate to the ultimate quality of your video.   

What is Video Bitrate? 

Video bitrates define the total number of ‘video/data bits that are transferred alongside the ‘transfer rate’ which is the transfer speed of your video i.e. bps (bits per second). Higher transfer rates include Kbps (kilobits per second) and Mbps (Megabits per second). 

Typically, a video with a higher bitrate takes a shorter time to transfer since larger data bits are transferred in a single second. This video is also likely to hold a higher resolution as well as overall quality. 

Remember that raising your video’s bitrate will relatively give your output a larger storage size and a slow exporting speed. On the other hand, an output video with a lower bitrate will be smaller in size, have lower quality, and obviously have a slower export as well. 

Therefore, every video editor should be keen when finishing up their editing process to ensure that the appropriate bitrate is selected to attain the desired quality and resolution.   

Relationship between Resolution and Bitrate 

The resolution of a video is the number of pixels being spread and shown across a video display device. A video with a high pixel concentration is likely to have a higher and better visual quality. If the pixel concentration is decreased the video output might turn out to be cringy and have a lower visual quality. 

To attain the best output at the end of the task, you’ll have to make sure the video bitrate and resolution somehow sync and balance.   

While completing your editing, some editors and software might automatically optimize and balance the bitrate and resolution of your video thus granting you perfect output. However, there’s a number of freemium tools that can help you calculate the video’s bitrates. 

They include,, DVD HQ, and XVidCalc. Apart from just answering your query, ‘How does bitrate affect video quality?’, we’ll also go through the best and recommended video bitrates for certain video resolutions in terms of your upload speed and frame rates of your video. Let’s delve into it. 

Bitrates for Audio Types 

In audio production, the term bitrate defines the number of date/audio bits being transferred or uploaded within a given period of time. Audio bitrates are usually recorded in Kbps i.e. Kilobits per second. 

For instance, audio files downloaded from Audiomack and iTunes have 256 Kilobits per second. Just as stated earlier, a file with a higher bitrate will always be bigger in size compared to the contrary.   

Audio type  Bitrate (kbps) 
5.1  512 
Mono  128 
Stereo  384 
Resolution  Upload speed  Bitrate  Frame Rates/sec 
480p  3-5.5 mbps  1500-3000  60 fps 
720p  -6 mbps  2500-4000  30 fps 
1080p  6-8 mbps  4500-6500  60 fps 
1080p  5-7 mbps  3500-5000  30 fps 
720p  5-7 mbps  3500-5000  60 fps 

Best Video Bitrate for Streaming 

Before we draw the curtains on today’s topic,’ How bitrate affects video quality’, we’ll look into the appropriate bitrates suitable for video streaming. For a clear and steady video streaming session, your video’s bitrate has to be at optimal balance with its resolution. 

The table below outlines the appropriate bitrates for steady streaming on Facebook, youtube, and other stream channels.   

Video  Resolution   Bitrate 
Full HD  Standard  3500-5000 kbps 
Regular HD  Standard  2500-4000 kbps 
Full HD   High  4500-6000 kbps 
Regular HD  High  3500-5000 kbps 

How to Change the Video Bitrate 

To alter or change your output video’s bitrate, you can use an editor such as Filmora and other premium video editors available for both PC and Android usage. Such editors contain plugins and extensions that enhance a friendly user interface thus making it easy to perform certain editing tasks on your device such as video enhancement for example. 

In this case, we’re going to use Wondershare Filmora as our editor to see the steps one should follow to change their media’s bitrate. You can use this guideline to not only change your video’s bitrate but also the audio bitrate if you desire to. Below is the bitrate changing process for your video from the first step to the final one. 

First of all, you’ll begin with launching your video editor to find the specific video whose bitrate you’re about to change. If you’re using Filmora, launch the software and import the video from your files. As soon as you have your file in the editor, drag it down and drop it to the audio-visual timeline at the bottom of the page. 

You can now choose the right audio or video format for your video then hit the EXPORT button. Hereby, you’ll have to choose the device compatibility of your media file. 

Click the SETTINGS button on the pop-up page to access the video and audio parameters of your video i.e. the resolution, channel, sample rate, encoder, frame rate, and bitrate. This is where you’ll select the bitrate value for your video.  

How Does Bitrate Affect Video Quality – Conclusion 

After you finish your editing and optimize the desired bitrate, you can now choose the storage location for your new video and export it. Wait for the exporting process to complete then check out the video in its folder location. 

We believe this article has given you a satisfying answer for your frequently asked question,’ How does bitrate affect video quality?’ Feel free to visit this post for reference and guidelines whenever you get stuck somewhere in your last video editing steps.