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It is mentioned in 22 - 23 Number of Channels which will be 1 if mono, 2 if stereo. So why 22 and 23 (that is 2 bytes) allocated here? With 1 byte, we can put either 1 or 2.

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The dry and somewhat unhelpful answer is: The creators of the WAV file specification deemed 65535 to be a reasonable maximum number of channels.

Any reasonable surround sound system (3.1, 5.1, 7.1) has less than 255 speakers. So the creators must have had other applications of channels in mind, like perhaps Multitrack Recording. Let's say You want to record an orchestra and a choir. Each musician and singer is recorded by a separate microphone. The number of recorded channels/tracks could easily exceed 255.

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    $\begingroup$ The even more dry and and even more helpful answer is: there is no such thing as the "WAV file specification". Rather, every program interprets header in slightly different ways, then adds their own stuff on top, which in turn then other programs try to interpret in a way that makes sense. Many programs do, in fact, reject a file as invalid if you present it with a WAV file with more than two channels. But, especially professional DAWs (digital audio workstations) will happily accept files in what is sometimes called "Broadcast WAV" with 64 more more channels. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 3, 2023 at 9:53
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    $\begingroup$ Even worse: WAV isn't even an audio format. It is a container format, that doesn't even have to contain linear PCM audio. It is perfectly valid for a WAV file to contain an MPEG 1 Layer III compressed stream (aka MP3). In that sense, it is more like AVI, Ogg, or Matroska. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 3, 2023 at 9:55

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