[flac-dev] 64-bit residuals

Martijn van Beurden mvanb1 at gmail.com
Thu Mar 24 16:05:02 UTC 2022

Hi all,

I just filed an issue on github:
https://github.com/xiph/flac/issues/306 Long story short: libFLAC
currently uses 32-bit signed integers for residuals, but using certain
24-bit (crafted) material can overflow this. For examples and an
explanation see the github issue.

I'm sending this e-mail because I'd like to attract some extra
attention towards it. I'm working on patching this, but the residual
is actually exported through the API (as part of the subframe) so I'd
like to have some discussion on what would be the best way to fix
this. I see the following options:

1) Change all residual handling from 32-bit int to 64-bit int. This
might incur a performance penalty and it might invalidate certain
approaches now used with intrinsics. It also presents an API change
2) Change the current 32-bit signed integer arrays which are used for
residual handling to a union within a struct. This union would hold
both a 32-bit int and a 64-bit int variant of the residual, and the
struct would include a bool to clarify which of the two is being used.
For each function manipulating residuals (bitreader, bitwriter, lpc
restore etc.) a new _ultrawide variant is written and at several
places in the code a decision has to be added whether to use the
_ultrawide variant or the existing ones. This changes the API a little
more, but makes it able to keep the current intrinsics accelerated
3) Add a note to the FLAC spec that residuals should not exceed
32-bit, and add a mechanism to the encoder to ascertain this. In case
the encoder finds a residual exceeding the 32-bit range, it defaults
to using a verbatim subframe.

Any thoughts?

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