bwftool: Broadcast Wave File metadata tool

bwftool is a command-line tool to handle BWF (Broadcast Wave File) metadata that are found on Wave files (*.wav) generated using certain equipment. BWF versions 0, 1, 2 are supported. The tool is written in Perl language, so it's expected that this tool is portable to many software configurations.


License: Public domain. The author wrote this program using Perl 5.14.2 on Debian GNU/Linux 7.6/amd64.


show: Pretty-print BWF metadata in the input

Prints out information on the BWF metadata in human-readable format. For machine-readable output, use dump.

% show <input.wav>

The verb show can be abbreviated. Example output

dump: Dump BWF information in JSON format

Dumps information found on the BWF metadata in JavaScript Object Notation (JSON) format.

% dump <input.wav>

Example output

extract: Extract BWF metadata to a file

Extracts BWF metadata in a Wave file to another file. The extracted file can be used as input for show, dump, copy and vorbis.

% extract <input.wav> <output>

The output file keeps a valid RIFF structure.

copy: Copy BWF metadata from a file to another

Copies metadata information on a file to another Wave file. The output file is modified. Metadata that were originally on the output Wave file is overwritten.

% copy <bwfinput> <output.wav>

The input can optionally be BWF metadata extracted using extract command.

vorbis: Generate Vorbis comment fields from BWF metadata

Generates Vorbis comment fields (tags) from metadata found on BWF in Wave file. Example output

% vorbis <input.wav>

The tag names follow recommendations here []. But not all players support all tags anyway.

Not all data on the BWF metadata is converted; some fields have no equivalent on the Vorbis recommendation.

The output format used by this command is suitable as input for metaflac tool with --import-tags-from=file option. Now you can convert BWF-tagged Wave file library to FLAC format.

remove: Remove BWF metadata from a Wave file

Removes BWF metadata (bext chunk) from a Wave file.

% remove <input.wav>


  1. EBU·UER: Specification of the Broadcast Wave Format (BWF): A format for audio data files in broadcasting. Version 2.0. EBU-TECH3285. Geneva. May 2011.
  2. My github repo for this tool