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DSDIFF, Direct Stream Digital Interchange File Format, Version 1.5

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Format Description Properties Explanation of format description terms

Identification and description Explanation of format description terms

Full name Direct Stream Digital Interchange File Format, DSDIFF, Version 1.5
Description Format for the storage or exchange of one-bit delta sigma modulated audio, often called Direct Stream Digital, or for the losslessly compressed version called Direct Stream Transfer (DST).

As of 2006, delta sigma modulation is almost exclusively disseminated to endusers on the tangible media format called Super Audio CDs (SACDs), developed by SONY in association with Philips. The DSDIFF_1_5 file format is used by music producers to store DSD content or to deliver it "to the label" for reproduction on SACDs.
Relationship to other formats
    Subtype of IFF, IFF (EA Interchange File Format 1985)
    May contain DSD, One-bit Delta Sigma Audio Encoding
    May contain DST, Direct Stream Transfer format for lossless encoded DSD audio, not documented at this Web site
    May contain Marker information, in what is called a Time File, used to support certain editorial or production workflows, not documented at this Web site

Local use Explanation of format description terms

LC experience or existing holdings None, although the collections of the Motion Picture, Broadcasting, and Recorded Sound Division include SACDs.
LC preference None. For preservation reformatting, the Library prefers Broadcast WAVE (WAVE_BWF_1 and WAVE_BWF_2).

Sustainability factors Explanation of format description terms

Disclosure Developed by Royal Philips Electronics of the Netherlands, now overseen by Sonic Studio LLC.
    Documentation Direct Stream Digital Interchange File Format, DSDIFF, Version 1.5 (2004) and Recommended Usage of DSDIFF Version 1.5.
Adoption Adoption of file version unknown.
    Licensing and patents Not investigated.
Transparency Transparent wrapper. DSD bitstream is relatively transparent; DST is likely to be less so.
Self-documentation See IFF.
External dependencies Not investigated.
Technical protection considerations None indicated in specification.

Quality and functionality factors Explanation of format description terms

Sound
Normal rendering Details unknown; this is a very specialized format for professional producers.
Fidelity (high audio resolution) See DSD
Multiple channels DSDIFF_1_5 files can be structured for 2 channels or for "5- or 6-channels" (presumably for 5.1 mixes). SACDs may contain a 2-channel stereo mix, a surround mix (usually the 5.1 layout), other mixes, or even multiple mmix versions.
Support for user-defined sounds, samples, and patches Not applicable
Functionality beyond normal rendering Not fully investigated. DSDIFF_1_5 files can be divided into ten Division Files to overcome size limits imposed by some operating systems.

File type signifiers Explanation of format description terms

Tag Value Note
Filename extension dff
Indicated in Recommended Usage, p. 16
Filename extension dft
For a DSDIFF_1_5 Time File; see Recommended Usage, p. 18
Filename extension df0
df1
df2
df3
df4
df5
df6
df7
df8
df9
For a DSDIFF_1_5 Division File, not to exceed ten in number; see Recommended Usage, p. 16
Internet Media Type Not found.  Comments welcome.   
Magic numbers Not found.  Comments welcome.   

Notes Explanation of format description terms

General  
History  

Format specifications Explanation of format description terms


Useful references

URLs


Last Updated: Tuesday, 27-Jan-2015 07:36:09 EST