Audio CD (CD-DA) Tracks and Indexes

This section describes the logical format of tracks and indexes of an audio CD (Compact Disc Digital Audio or CD-DA).

From a logical point of view, an audio CD (Compact Disc Digital Audio or CD-DA) is divided into tracks. One track represents one continuous segment of music data that the audio player should play as a single piece.

An audio CD can have up to 99 tracks.

A track can have up to 100 indexes. Index starts with 0. But, audio CD players usually starts to play music from index 1.

To find out how many tracks on an audio CD, you can insert it into a Windows system and test it in command window:

C:\>d:

D:\>dir
 Volume in drive D is Audio CD
 Volume Serial Number is 0247-8212

 Directory of D:\

12/31/1994  08:00 PM                44 Track01.cda
12/31/1994  08:04 PM                44 Track02.cda
12/31/1994  08:07 PM                44 Track03.cda
12/31/1994  08:10 PM                44 Track04.cda
12/31/1994  08:12 PM                44 Track05.cda
12/31/1994  08:16 PM                44 Track06.cda
12/31/1994  08:21 PM                44 Track07.cda
12/31/1994  08:26 PM                44 Track08.cda
12/31/1994  08:31 PM                44 Track09.cda
12/31/1994  08:35 PM                44 Track10.cda
12/31/1994  08:39 PM                44 Track11.cda
12/31/1994  08:43 PM                44 Track12.cda
12/31/1994  08:47 PM                44 Track13.cda
12/31/1994  08:51 PM                44 Track14.cda
12/31/1994  08:55 PM                44 Track15.cda
12/31/1994  08:58 PM                44 Track16.cda
12/31/1994  08:02 PM                44 Track17.cda
12/31/1994  08:05 PM                44 Track18.cda
              18 File(s)            792 bytes
               0 Dir(s)               0 bytes free

In the test output record above, my CD drive is assigned with drive letter D. The output shows that my audio CD has 18 tracks (18 songs).

The next question is to find out where the TOC (Table Of Contents) is recorded on the audio CD. the TOC contains the list of sound tracks on the CD, and list of indexes for each track.

The first index (index 0) on each track is also called pregap, which is about 2 seconds of silence on normal audio CDs. But some audio CDs could record an extra song at index 0, which is called "hidden tracks".

Table of Contents

 About This Book

Audio CD (Compact Disc Digital Audio or CD-DA) Format

 Audio CD (CD-DA) Physical Parameters

 Audio CD (CD-DA) Data Structure

Audio CD (CD-DA) Tracks and Indexes

 Audio CD (Compact Disc Digital Audio or CD-DA) Players

 Audio CD (Compact Disc Digital Audio or CD-DA) Rip Music

 WAV Audio File Format

 MP3, MPEG-1 Audio Layer 3, Encoding Format

 Burning MP3 Music to Audio CD

 Windows Sound Recorder

 ISO 9660 Standard for Data CD

 Recording Data on CD

 VCD (Video CD) Standard

 DVD (Digital Video Disc) Standard Format

 TOC (Table Of Contents) on CDs

 IsoBuster - A Nice CD GUI Tool

 MPlayer - The Movie Player

 vStrip - Rip and Manipulate DVD VOB Files

 mpgtx - Manipulating MPEG Files

 CD/DVD - File Name Extension and Format Types

 References

 PDF Printing Version