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The Xing (pronounced "zing") MP3 encoder was one of the fastest MP3 encoders. Of course that comes with a price, and quality wasn't on par with encoders tuned for quality instead of speed, like FhG Slowenc (Audioactive) and LAME. Yet despite its reputation for poor quality, Xing's ~128 kbps VBR mode compared favorably in an early 2004 listening test.


  • Encodes .wav to MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 layer 3 audio
  • Encodes bitrates ranging from 28 to 320 kbps
  • Variable Bitrate (VBR) encoding support
  • High Frequency Encoding support (up to 20 kHz)
  • Low data rate support
  • Several times faster than most popular encoders
  • Automated batch processing
  • MP3 playback capabilities
  • GUI based and command-line encoder front ends


XingMP3 standalone encoder[edit]

Xing Mp3 Encoder (v1.5 GUI, main window)

The last standalone version of the Xing encoder was XingMP3 1.5, released in March 1999. It included a command-line interface (x3enc.exe), and a GUI (mp3enc.exe). The GUI was restricted to using a limited set of encoding profiles, whereas the command-line encoder had more options.

After that release, the encoder continued to be improved, but it was only distributed as part of the RealPlayer bundle.

Helix MP3 Encoder[edit]

In 2005, RealNetworks — owners of the Xing assets after acquiring Xing Technology, a.k.a. XingTech — decided to release the encoder under an open source license, with the new name Helix mp3enc. The new version of the encoder is a code library which also has a command-line interface, but there is no GUI.

The Helix MP3 encoder is part of the Helix datatype project, a collection of code libraries intended to support the Helix multimedia project.

External links[edit]