Cart Chunk - What is it and how does it work?

Cart Chunk - What is it and how does it work?

Liam Burke
Liam Burke
P Squared Employee
P Squared Employee (61K reputation)

Group: Broadcast Radio
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Cart Chunk - What is it and how does it work?


P Squared is one of the leading companies backing the CartChunk format , described by it's inventors as \"The Radio Industry's Traffic Data WAVE File Standard\". 

CartChunk is a system invented by a couple of US radio engineers to allow transfer of information about audio between systems simply and without any need for special actions by the user. 

In the great old days of radio, transferring an audio cut from one site to another, or from one system to another was usually done on a DAT or going back further on Reel to Reel tape. The information that described the cut (i.e. title, artist, copyright information and timing information) was hand written onto the item's label, so it couldn't be lost. When the world went digital, this information no longer had a home, so was usually either printed out or copied by hand from one system to another - or if at another site, by ringing the person that sent you the file and asking them to read it out over the phone! 

CartChunk solves this problem by embedding the information digitally into the header information that is already present in the now ubiquitous WAV file. That way, wherever the WAV file goes, the information follows.
Most of the major companies are now partners in the CartChunk project, and we all regularly discuss how the information is used and stored to ensure that all of the different software made by all of the different vendors can happily accept files from other systems and transfer across as much of this information as possible.

At present, Myriad, Myriad STS, AutoTrack v2.6, Scoop and OCP all have support for both reading and writing CartChunk information built in - in fact, it cannot be turned off as CartChunk use is now widespread.

To read a full a history of the CartChunk format, as well as see the list of participating vendors, and full technical details of the format itself, visit the CartChunk website at

Technical Information

When a WAV file is imported onto the Audio Wall, the information stored in the CartChunk is handled as shown in the table attached below.


As described in the Other CartChunk fields Section above, the Carts Background and text colours, as well as the Ending Type information is stored in the UserDef field as there is no direct equivalent in the CartChunk format. The UserDef field is used for different purposes in products from different vendors, so this should not cause any interoperation issues.

An example is (note that the text is American English not UK English!)
BackColor=&H8000000F& ForeColor=&H80000012&
Which indicates that the Cart is using a system colour (note the &H8 prefix) for both Background and foreground.

For further information, please email

Search key words: Cart Chunk, embedded info, WAV, Broadcast Wav.

Liam Burke - Broadcast Radio Ltd


Telephone: +44 1482 383700
cartchunktable.jpg (603 views, 59.00 KB)

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