[flac-dev] Supporting real-time UTC timestamp data

Declan Kelly flac-dev at groov.ie
Mon Jun 9 11:47:19 PDT 2014

Interesting article: "Time-coding audio files"

The author is a signals hacker who has spoken at CCC and other events,
and has determined that "There's no standard method for doing this with
WAV or FLAC files".

Where "this" means recording the UTC time-of-day in the audio stream, as
ongoing data, as opposed to knowing the start time and elapsed time.
When recording radio stations (for logging purposes) or environmental
noise (which may include long periods of silence that don't get logged)
and telephone call speech (for "training purposes") it is often more
practical to have a constant timecode at playback that corresponds to
the "wall clock" UTC at time of recording.

The article proposes 2 methods (with working Perl code) to embed the
time as in-band noise in the audio. One method (LSB stealing) requires
lossless encoding; the other is audible but can survive lossy encoding.

I'm sure that BWF supports timecode (SMPTE or compatible) as out-of-band
data, and I assumed that FLAC also had some support for this.
Was I wrong?

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