AIFF & MetaData


I am impressed and happy with the extensive metadata support for BWFs now in WL8. Very Cool!

But we also get requests for AIFF masters, which are used commonly for movie and trailer libraries. Music supervisors often use iTunes to organize their assets using AIFF metadata. I assume they are using the Id3 chunk. iTunes does not seem to import/recognize the Id3 tags in the BWF’s I render from WL8.

WaveLab does not seem to offer metadata support with AIFF files. I am hoping I am overlooking something. Please advise.

Thank You!

No, unfortunately there is no support for AIFF meta-data. AIFF is an apple format that is no longer supported by Apple, hence there will be no extension to this format. And we don’t wish to spend resources on an obsolete format, more than the current support.
I hope you can convince your client to switch to the standard format.

I was a little surprised myself about continued use of AIFF. For better or worse, that industry adopted AIF years ago due to its usefulness with iTunes, ProTools, and tagging facility which WAV did not previously provide. Whole libraries are organized on that model so no amount of convincing can change what is established now.

This request for AIFF tagging is rather new and rare for us, so it is not a burning issue at present. But as music library delivery via CD declines, the need for files with embedded metadata will rise. Let’s see how things develop.

WYCA, as an option, there are two file conversion apps on Windows that can easily convert wav to aif passing the wav ID3 through in the process. One is Foobar2000 (free). Simply drag a folder or files in, right click and convert with name and destination options. The other is xRecode, which is available for a small price.

Unfortunately I’ve yet to find a Mac wav ID3 app that works as easily and quickly as these two do.

Actually, JRiver Media Center on Mac converts WAV with ID3 to AIF with ID3 pretty easily too, but it’s a bit more money.

Two more conversion programs that will also work for ID3 metadata passthrough convert to AIF (and other formats) from WAV with ID3 are:
MediaHuman Audio Converter (Win and Mac)
XLD (X Lossless Decoder) Converter (Mac) (open source)

I don’t know if other mastering programs support AIF metadata, but there are these conversion options if you write the ID3 in Wavelab WAV and then convert to AIF. And AFAIK Wavelab is the only program in existence that supports reading and writing all possible WAV metadata, BWF RIFF iXML aXML ID3 CART, so it has that one huge advantage.

p.s. if you install MediaHuman on windows, you might want to decline adaware and bing in the “custom” install setup. mac, that doesn’t apply.

I think I should add that my favourite converter, ripper and metadata editor also does AIF metadata: EZ CD Audio Converter from Poikosoft. Either free or full for a modest investment with unlimited upgrades.

A useful list of tools that support AIFF metadata can be found at
Another program that supports reading and writing all possible WAV metadata is Metadata Touch.

Interesting, I hadn’t noticed that link before. It looks like it might be the same writer who does the BWF WAV blog page, which I’ve found very useful in the past. Same header line wording.