We’ve recently revamped our Audio Submission Requirements for ACX (formerly known as the Rules For Audiobook Production), and we’re highlighting some of the changes. Rest assured that most of the requirements remain the same – we’ve just made them easier to understand!
The importance of the Audio Submission Requirements
You’re in competition with the best! – Audible has over 150,000 audio programs for sale, with recordings from both the biggest studios in the business and ACX users’ home studios. Both recording environments can sound great with the right settings, and our submission requirements help ensure that your titles meet the same specifications as all of Audible’s providers.
You want to get your title on sale as quickly as possible! – Books created through ACX are distributed to Audible, Amazon and iTunes, and the sooner they’re available for sale, the sooner you can start racking up positive reviews and generating sales. Our Quality Assurance process is streamlined to get your titles to Audible’s audio processing teams efficiently, and your title may be held up if it doesn’t meet our audio specs.
As ACX Audio Production Coordinator Andrew Grathwohl, puts it
Familiarizing yourself with our Audio Submission requirements will help ensure that your title passes our QA screening without a hitch. In doing so, you can be confident that your audiobook will stand shoulder-to-shoulder with all the other titles in the Audible catalog.
What’s New About These Revamped Requirements?
Glad you asked! Each aspect of production is now headed by the requirement and explained with a straightforward description. Requirements are broken up between broad, title-level items, and specific file-level details, and they are given to you in bite-sized, easily digestible prose that everyone from audiobook experts to brand-newbies can understand.
We’ve also simplified a few key points in the production process. We’ve eliminated grouping of chapters once and for all (so don’t even try it!), and we’ve given you a bit more leeway in the spacing at the top and tail of each file.
A Few Quick Examples
You can find the new Audio Submission Requirements page over on ACX, but here are a few sections of note that you might find helpful:
Your submitted audiobook must:
Be consistent in overall sound and formatting.
Why? – Consistency in audio levels, tone, noise level, spacing, and pronunciation helps give the listener a great experience. Drastic changes can be jarring and are not in keeping with a professional production. Extreme fluctuations in volume means the listener will have to keep a hand on the volume control of their listening device. This detracts from the listening experience and may lead to poor reviews and reduced sales.
Include a retail audio sample that is between one and five minutes long.
Why? – The retail audio sample used on Audible and Amazon is a preview of your audiobook. A great sample will show off your material and attract paying customers! (Note: iTunes automatically uses the first five minutes of the book as their sample.)
Each uploaded file must:
Contain only one chapter or section.
Why? – This ensures listeners can easily navigate between sections, and that skipping forwards or backwards moves them forward or back one section. Combining multiple sections in one file creates a confusing navigation experience. If the audiobook is not in a traditional chapterized format and you’re unsure how best to separate your files, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for guidance.
Be 192kbps or higher MP3, Constant Bit Rate (CBR)
Why? – Before going on sale in the Audible store, titles are encoded in a variety of formats that customers have the option of downloading. 192kbps (or higher), Constant Bit Rate MP3 files are required so this encoding process works without error. You may upload 256kbps or 320kbps files if you’d like, but the difference in quality heard by listeners will be negligible.
Have our submission requirements made it easier for you to produce and upload high quality audiobooks to ACX?