Audio Basis - articles about audio
DFF file (DSDIFF, .dff extension) is one of DSD (1-bit audio) file formats for audiophile music and other recordings. Read below about features, sound quality, format comparisons, and how to open DFF audio file: convert, play, edit. Keep reading...
DFF format audio consists of data blocks (chunks). There are 8 standard types of chunks. 
A non-standard chunk may be embedded into DFF file. However, if a reading application can't recognize the chunk, it is skipped.
There is the chunk with absolute start time. It may be useful in professional applications.
Channel number of .dff audio file is limited by the abilities of the channel-number field in the channels chunk of the format. Channel mask with reserved channel types ("Left", "Right", etc.) is applied. And there is a custom reserve range for other types of channels.
Also, there is a separate loudspeaker-configuration chunk (optional).
DSD (uncompressed) and DST compressed sound data are stored differently:
Metadata (track, album names, performer, artwork, etc.) chunk may be added to DFF as a non-standard chunk (data block). But the only application, that can recognize the metadata block, will read and display it.
Read article DSD vs DSF vs DFF Files Audio. What is difference...
DSF vs. DFF is not a complex matter. Because both formats are very similar.
Comparison DFF and DSF
|Audio content||Binary identical to DFF||Binary identical to DSF|
|Sample rate||DSD64, DSD128, DSD256,...||DSD64, DSD128, DSD256,...|
|Metadata||Standard way||Non-standard data block, can cause compatibility issues|
DFF and DSF are binary identical in DSD audio data.
DSF allows saving metadata standard way (DSF audio player applications capable read it, as rule).
Multibit DSD samples are not so important for sound quality. Read more about bit depth and sample rate >
Both formats allow flexible configuration for multichannel files.
Warning: some software can convert DSF to DFF or back with audio modifications (non-bit-perfect mode). So checking every converting tool is recommended.
Read about comparison DSD files (infographic) >
The sound quality of files is defined:
It is completely like DSF vs PCM.
In general, DFF and PCM are the same things. But DFF uses minimal bit depth (1-bit).
The minimal bit depth causes minimal dynamic range. To expand the dynamic range noise shaping (pushing noise energy out of audible frequency band) is used.
But pushing the energy demands reserve of the total frequency band of an audio signal. Thus, DFF uses a higher sample rate.
DFF file audio players can transmit sound stuff into 1-bit DSD DAC as is. Also, DFF file may be converted inline ("on fly") to PCM for playback at PCM DAC.
PCM to DSD conversion and DSD to PCM cause quality losses.
Alternatively, DFF file may be pre-converted to PCM offline (non-realtime) via audio converter software. Offline conversion is not limited by time of CPU calculations and "heavy" precise algorithms may be used.
Also, some DFF player compatibility issues are known: channel number, metadata artwork size or others.
For audio players, that are stereo capable only, conversion multichannel DFF 5.1 to stereo is used.
Read more about DSD players >
Check DSD music downloads...
This format may be edited 3 steps:
To minimize losses, PCM 32- or 64-bit float is recommended.
Multiple or non-multiple PCM sample rate does not matter to pro audio conversion software.
Target sample rate defines the maximum band of a musical signal.
As a general recommendation, you can use PCM sample rate 176.4/192 or 352.8/384 kHz.
Read more about DSD editing here...
DFF audio format is DSD high-resolution music file format. Read more...
Yes. DFF is a lossless audio format. Read details...
DSD music files are audio file types in high resolution. Read more...
In contrast DFF, DSF files have advanced support for metadata. Read more...
Both formats are audiophile ones. Read what is better DSD or FLAC...
You can convert DSF files:
You can play DFF files on a PC via audio player software...
December 8, 2022 updated | since July 2, 2017