Adding chapter markers to audio and video files

I'm currently researching how to embed chapter information inside audio and video files, so that they still work when playing a file standalone.
Can a chapter index be written to the ID3 metadata?

It's possible, but not with Mp3tag currently.

Hello! This question is good timing. I've got ~150-200 MP3s of a couple of radio series that I'm in the middle of sorting out. Each MP3 is an entire series containing ~6-10 episodes. I'd love to be able to write chapter info into them. I can see from above that it's not currently supported with Mp3tag, but is it on the roadmap?

Cheers, James

This is a big issue with audiobooks as well. Many people have ripped their old audiobook CD's and would love to trade in folder's full of 01,02.03.04, etc into a single file without the quality loss of transcoding.

I’m currently using a very inelegant workaround which relies on Drax - windows software that has been unsupported since 2012.
Drax will only open files with file extension M4V.
Fortunately, the container structure of m4a, mp4, and even mov files is close enough to m4v that you can just rename files by tacking on “.m4v”, and Drax will open it.

Then you can go to the chapters tab.
From the File menu, choose Import Chapters.
Open a text file with your prepared chapters.
Save.
Quit Drax.
Revert the file name to get rid of the .m4v

You’ll want to prepare a chapter text file in advance with a list of chapters in the following format:
hh:mm:ss.000 unique chapter name
The first line must begin with 00:00:00.000

I’m a Vegas Pro user, and this software can’t export audio or video files that contain chapter information, but it has View\Window\Edit Details (ctrl+alt+4) which can give me a list of marker times and names in a similar format. I copy and paste that into a spreadsheet and use formulas to convert the chapter information into a format which can then be pasted into a text file for Drax. It’s really inelegant, and I can’t guarantee that it won’t corrupt your files, but better than nothing!

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The easiest way to do this is by converting your file to the Matroska format. You can also make audio-only files, but they are less widely supported.

Download MkvToolNix. You can choose an older version which is smaller and includes a more Windows-friendly utility called MMG, but it is up to you.

Make a simple text file containing your chapters in "OGM" format. The other format is very tedious to compose, and includes additional information like language and hexadecimal IDs. Save the chapters as a template for the future. Then open your video into MkvToolNix/MMG for remuxing, and add your text file to the respective field. If the video already contains chapters, you can uncheck them.

CHAPTER01=00:00:00.000
CHAPTER01NAME=01: Chapter 1
CHAPTER02=00:02:29.200
CHAPTER02NAME=02: Chapter 2

Your chapters will appear on the seekbar in video players, can be navigated to from its menu, and they will appear as "tracks" in Foobar. You can tag your Mkv files with fields like Artist, but they will appear inconsistently in Video players.