The bitrate of your plan determines two things:
The bandwidth used to stream to the SHOUTcast server, and the bandwidth
used to listen.
For most places, this bandwidth used is trivial. Listening
on devices with low bandwidth may experience problems buffering audio at higher
bitrates. The official SHOUTcast iPhone
app filters out 128kbps stations by default as it determines that most 3G
connections aren’t fast enough to listen without interruptions.
The quality of audio
The lower the bitrate, the less data that is sent to the listener
and the lower quality of audio received. At lower bitrates, music will lose its
fidelity and start to sound distorted. As an example, we have encoded a piece
of music to each of the bitrates we offer. We’ve encoded the music in MP3
format as it’s by far the most commonly used format.