In PCM audio (.wav and aif) bit depth determines the dynamic range of an audio signal. Each bit represents 6.02 dB of dynamic, so a 16-bit signal provides 96 dB of dynamic range divided into 65,536 unique values (216). Floating point arithmetic provides for the use of decimal points and exponents to increase the available range of values to represent a signal’s dynamic range.
Term: Bit depth
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