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libsndfile is a C library for reading and writing files containing sampled sound (such as MS Windows WAV and the Apple/SGI AIFF format) through one standard library interface. It is released in source code format under the GNU Lesser General Public License (GPL).

It was designed to handle both little-endian (such as WAV) and big-endian (such as AIFF) data, and to compile and run correctly on little-endian (such as Intel and DEC/Compaq Alpha) processor systems as well as big-endian processor systems

libsndfile has the following main features:

  • Ability to read and write a large number of file formats.

  • A simple, elegant and easy to use Applications Programming Interface.

  • Usable on Unix, Win32, MacOS and others.

  • On the fly format conversion, including endian-ness swapping, type conversion and bitwidth scaling.

  • Optional normalisation when reading floating point data from files containing integer data.

  • Ability to open files in read/write mode.

  • The ability to write the file header without closing the file (only on files open for write or read/write).

  • Ability to query the library about all supported formats and retrieve text strings describing each format.


To make this library available, run one of the following module commands:

module load libsndfile/1.0.28-GCCcore-9.3.0
module load libsndfile/1.0.28-GCCcore-10.2.0
module load libsndfile/1.0.31-GCCcore-11.2.0
module load libsndfile/1.1.0-GCCcore-11.3.0
module load libsndfile/1.2.0-GCCcore-12.2.0

Installation method

libsndfile version 1.0.28 was installed using Easybuild 4.7.0, build details can be found in $EBROOTLIBSNDFILE/easybuild with the module loaded.


Testing has been conducted by running an interactive session and compiling the example list_formats. Using the command :

gcc list_formats.c $(pkg-config --libs sndfile) -o output