OGG vs. MP3 – The BEST Audio Quality in Least Size?

With all this data being made, transferred, and stored every second, where does it all really go? We see and download unlimited audio files, image files, video files, documents, etc. Each of these files has a different format. Some are WAV, MP3, OGG, or AIFF, and so on. So, which one is the best among all?

The most common formats include the OGG and MP3 formats. In plain terms, they are lossy audio formats that use the lossy technique for filtering the audio ranges inaudible to the human ear. To know which one is best suited for what purpose, being able to distinguish between the various formats is essential.

One of the easiest ways to differentiate among the various file formats is by reading the complete extension of the file name. However, if your work is a bit more technical or you simply want to know about the different compressed audio file types available, this article is just for you!

What are OGG and MP3 Formats?


The OGG is a free and open container format designed and maintained by the Xiph.Org Foundation. The authors of the format have shared that OGG offers efficient data streaming, transferring, and manipulation of high-quality and discrete digital multimedia.

OGG File

The OGG file is simply an audio file that stores music. It typically contains audio data shared or transferred from one user to another that is saved in the OGG container format and also compressed with the Vorbis audio compression. OGG files may include song metadata, such as track data as well as information.

On the other hand, OGG, also called OGG Vorbis, is another famous form of compressed digital audio. Although it did not spark as much attention as the MP3 format, OGG Vorbis still remains a top favorite of numerous audiophiles.

The main reason for its popularity is the extremely small space that it occupies, allowing users to store mass-size data in a limited space. The OGG audio data compression varies by bitrate, hence the unbelievably low disk space occupancy.

If you are still confused about why you should use OGG format instead of MP3, it is because the former is a vital technological tool that can compress extensive data into digital multimedia music. It takes significantly less space without compromising on the quality. Look into your pocket PCs to find enormous OGG files.


MP3 is another popular coding format that has been around for several decades, even before the 1990s. The MP3 format codes for digital audios and is developed mainly by the Fraunhofer Society in Germany along with the support of numerous other digital scientists in the United States and other countries.

The MP3 format emerged as a revolutionizing format that spread worldwide within a very short period. Even though it follows the lossy audio filing, the MP3 compression codec reduces the file size to a great extent. This feature is exactly what makes it a top favorite of music lovers all around the globe.

The smaller size allows for convenient streaming, storage, and sharing. The compression also does not compromise the audio quality. An example is the conversion of WAV files that may take up as much as 50 MB. However, when converted to MP3, it merely takes 4 -5 MB. And if you want an even lower file size, consider mp3 128 kbps against 320 kbps.

The storage of MP3 music files into CDS became the most remarkable trend within a few years of the format’s release. The launch of the MP3 player further boosted the format’s popularity.

MP3 File

The MP3 file is a format most often associated with files containing MPEG-1 elementary stream or MPEG-2 audio encoded data minus the other MP3 standard complexities.

OGG Vorbis Vs. MP3

The preference for OGG or MP3 varies for every individual and their use. Some may only require the file format to listen to music as part of their leisure activity, while others may need these files for professional use, such as a music project.

Let’s list down the most significant differences between MP3 and OGG.

The MP3 format is a larger size format as compared to OGG. The compression is constant bitrate for MP3, while it is varied bitrate for OGG. The source for MP3 is patented, while the OGG source is free. The MP3 format is mostly compatible with Mac, Android, Windows, and Apple devices. In contrast, the OGG format is compatible with Android and Windows only.

MP3 also has a large number of users in comparison with OGG. MP3 is a well-known brand because of its flawless compatibility with various programs. The MP3 files, however, do take up a lot more space. Therefore, OGG is a better option if you want to transfer or share data quickly and efficiently.

MP3 also comes with a Joint-Stereo along with two separate channels. In contrast, OGG can support many more channels, from 2 to 256, maximally. The encoding for OGG is also superior to MP3 as it is about 192 kbps. Even at 128 kbps, both the OGG and MP3 have similar characteristics, apart from the sound quality, which is better than the OGG format.

Furthermore, as OGG is a free source, unlike MP3, you can easily access old files without having to stress about copyright infringements. You can also load over a hundred MP3 songs on an average CD or upload or download them to and from websites.

MP3 can be easily shared via email and other platforms. An example is a 50 MB WAV file, which can be compressed to about 3 – 5 MB with almost no effects on the digital sound quality.

Similarities Between OGG Vorbis and MP3

  • Both the MP3 and OGG Vorbis are compressed digital audio files.
  • Both follow the category of lossy audio formatting.
  • Both the MP3 and OGG Vorbis can be shared across various platforms, such as emails, or stored in cloud folders.
  • Both are small-size formats.
  • Despite going under significant compression, the OGG and MP3 can be used to retain most of the original data without compromising the quality.

Another Popular Choice- The WAV Format

The WAV format, short for WAVEFORM Audio File, is another popular file format developed by Microsoft and IBM. It stores audio bitstreams on computers and other gadgets. It is the main format used by all the Microsoft Windows systems for uncompressed audio data. The bitstream coding for WAV is a linear pulse code modulation system.

It is a lossless audio format that does not compress the actual analog audio data. Although not too popular among the general public, it is widely used by digital music companies all around the world.

MP3 vs OGG Vorbis vs WAV

Some users also compare MP3 with OGG and WAV. The compression bitrate for each format differs and depends on the file. Since the OGG and MP3 are lossy audio formats, they compress the data, slightly distorting or compromising the data. Resultantly, the original information is lost irretrievably.

In contrast, the WAV format maintains the quality and originality of the data without making any changes to the sound quality. However, it takes up more space than OGG and MP3. Therefore, it is not as popular as the other two formats.


Declaring a winner among the two famous formats, MP3 and OGG, are very tough as both have some pros and cons. If compatibility and easy usage are your priorities, MP3 is your best bet. It can be played across all media platforms and is often favored by those keen on streaming and storing music.

On the other hand, OGG definitely has better quality and occupies a lot less space than a typical MP3 file. It is ideal for those with plenty of data but very limited space. However, since its compatibility is not as broad as the MP3 format and is limited to particular mediums only, OGG falls slightly behind in the race.

But the main question for picking a winner between the two is what do you want to use it for? If you are fond of sharing and downloading music multimedia, streaming, and file-sharing audio files, MP3 is your clear answer.

In contrast, if you handle large-size multimedia projects, have limited downloading space, cannot make any compromises on the quality, and prefer fast transfers, OGG is what you should turn to.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is OGG better than MP3?

Although MP3 is a lot more popular than OGG Vorbis, it occupies greater space, is patented, and has a constant bitrate. On the other hand, OGG Vorbis provides better sound quality, has a varied bitrate, and takes up lesser storage space. However, OGG is not compatible with as many programs as the MP3 format. Therefore, choose the format that suits you the best.

2. What is OGG good for?

Ogg Vorbis is a free and open container that supports Windows and Android. Designed by Xiph. Organization, it offers efficient manipulation and streaming of high-quality audio multimedia. It is most useful when extensive data has to be stored or transferred across platforms or emailed. It occupies very little space compared to MP3; therefore, it is a better option for ample data storage.

3. What is the smallest audio format?

OGG is the smallest audio format as its data compression varies by bitrate, unlike MP3 with a constant bitrate.

4. Why is MP3 more popular than OGG?

While OGG is a varied bitrate along with greater compression features, MP3 has a constant bitrate independent of the data size. OGG takes lesser storage space than MP3 and has better sound quality. However, the release of the famous MP3 player gained massive popularity, making MP3 a more famous audio file format.

5. Is an OGG file lossless?

The audio formats can be divided into two main categories, the lossy audio format, and the lossless audio format. OGG Vorbis belongs to the former category. Therefore, some data is prone to deletion or loss when converted into OGG format.

6. Is WAV or MP3 better?

Generally, the WAV audio files are better quality than the MP3 audio files. However, the case is different if the WAV audio file has been compressed. The lossless WAV file is ideal for carrying critical audio files and recording high-quality data, whereas MP3 is a reliable option for music files. Although MP3 is more popular, WAV has a higher standard.