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How to calculate sampling frequency

Updated February 21, 2017

Sampling frequency, also known as sampling rate, is a measure of the number of samples per second in a sound. A sample is the rate at which sound goes from a continuous signal, which is a signal that is effectively not countable, to a discrete signal, a signal that has clear, countable parts. Samples in sound are measured in hertz, which is a measure of the sound wave's frequency. Thus, to determine sampling frequency, you only need to know the audio's sample within a given amount of time.

Determine the sound's sample. A sound's sample is frequently a given in these sort of problems. Samples are generally given in the unit of hertz. Common sampling rates include CD audio, which samples at 44,100 hertz.

Multiply the sampling number by a unit of time. Typically, sampling frequencies are expressed in seconds. The amount of time for a sampling frequency is arbitrary; it must be given for the problem to be solved.

Express the final solution as an amount of samples. For example, if you wanted to determine the sampling frequency of CD audio over 10 seconds, the final solution would be expressed as 441,000 samples.

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About the Author

Drew Lichtenstein started writing in 2008. His articles have appeared in the collegiate newspaper "The Red and Black." He holds a Master of Arts in comparative literature from the University of Georgia.