Beginner’s Guide To Understanding AIFF Files

Written by Molly Owen, Updated on October 11, 2023

AIFF, abbreviated as Audio Interchange File format for storing digital audio data, was developed by Apple Corporation, a standard audio file format for Mac computers and laptops. It supports a diversity of bit resolutions, channels, and sample rates of audio. The AIFF can even result in an uncompressed PCM (Pulse Code Modulation) file that is large in file size but maintains superior sound quality. Nowadays, most professional computer users use the AIFF file format as it produces digital audio waveforms.

AIFF Files contains an uncompressed lossless format. The AIFF Files are usually saved in .aif and .aifc files when compressed.

AIFF facilitates flexibility, such as copying, changing file formats, editing, and other post-production activities. They are the Mac \ Apple corresponding WAV files, though both Windows and Mac OS-based systems \ laptops identify AIFF format. The file extension of the AIFF file format is .aif or .aiff.

The regular AIFF file encloses two channels of uncompressed stereo audio with the size of 16 bits, recorded at the rate of 44.1 KHz; usually, this is referred to as CD-quality audio. The AIFF file holds 10MB per minute of audio, meaning the song will last 4 minutes and requires nearly 40 MB of disk space for storage (equivalent to a WAV file). Nevertheless, the AIFF file is ten times larger than the MP3 file, recorded at 128 kbps.

How To Open AIFF Files?

You can view AIFF files on various media players such as Windows Media Player, Apple Music, Apple Quicktime Player, VLC Media Player, iTunes, etc.

Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of using AIFF files:

Advantages of AIFF Files:

  • Uncompressed audio format for the highest possible sound quality.
  • Most major media players widely support AIFF Files.
  • Ideal for professional audio applications.

Disadvantages of AIFF Files:

  • Since these AIFF files are uncompressed, these files are much larger in size than compressed audio formats.
  • At times, sharing these files can be difficult due to its size.

Sometimes, you may delete or lose your vital AIFF audio file; in such cases, Remo Recover (Windows / Mac) software, an excellent audio recovery tool, comes in handy to recover all your deleted files in just a few minutes…

NOTE: The standard AIFF file format will not support compressed audio data, so Apple Corporation decided to develop a variation of the AIFF format, AIFF-C, to support compressed audio data. This format is also totally based on the original AIFF format but provides some additional space in the structure of a file to describe the form of compression. So, the AIFF-C file format supports and stores audio generated from manifold compression algorithms. For compressed variants, the file format is .aifc.

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