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Topic: Missing cue sheets - Seeking the final answer for tools or procedures (Read 711 times) previous topic - next topic
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Missing cue sheets - Seeking the final answer for tools or procedures

Hello. I am new here. I read the FAQ and looked through various subforums. It seems General Audio is the right place for my question. If not, please let me know where I should post this question.

My question is a common one but after weeks (actually months) of searching other people's questions, I have not found a suitable or definitive answer. Or maybe I just haven't been convinced that the answer "it cannot be done" is the final or best answer.

My question is: how can I automatically split a single FLAC file into tracks without a pre-existing cue sheet?

I either need to find or create cue sheets, and I need an automated way to do it. I can do some simple programming, if needed.

Is there any tool that will generate a cue sheet from a single FLAC file? (For example, by detecting silence?)

Is there a large database of cue files? Seems like there should be, but I haven't found it yet. I did recently hear about, and I see it provides data that is similar to a cue sheet. Here's an example for an album I have:

Led Zeppelin - In Through The Out Door - 2015 Deluxe Edition-1979
I found it here:
Led Zeppelin / 2015 - In Through the Out Door
The track listing is here:

 I guess I could probably write a Python script to convert that into a cue sheet.  Is that my only option? I don't want to reinvent the wheel.

EDIT: OK, so I found an old post here from 2006. 15 years old. But maybe this is still the only way? It suggests:

- find the CD's entry on like I mentioned above (example
- click on the disc ID link (example:
- save the page it leads to as a plain text file
- feed the saved file into cddb2cue or freedb2cue or xmcd2cue ...

There seem to be several versions of xmcd2cue. Maybe this is the most current?

Is this the best approach? Is that version of xmcd2cue the best tool?


I have amassed a large collection of ripped music on my hard drive over the years. Unfortunately, when I started, I did not know anything about cue sheets or anything else. After moving, I no longer have all my CD's. Out of my thousands of albums, I have around 200 that I need to split into tracks but for which I have no cue sheet. I do not want to do the pure manual method for 200 albums.

So far, for learning, I have manually created a few cue files in a text editor. I learned how cue files are structured, and I have good tools for splitting the files into tracks.

I run Arch Linux and my favorite tool is currently:
~ft/unflac - sourcehut git

I also recently came across this tool:
Flacon - Audio File Encoder

I know about other Linux tools like shntool and cuetools and I use them if or when needed. But  unflac does most of what I need for this step in organizing my music.

After I have all my albums split into tracks, I will probably use Beets for ID3 tagging and further organization:

beets: the music geek’s media organizer — beets 1.5.0 documentation

Thanks in advance for any recommendations for splitting my flac files into tracks. I'm sure there are probably obvious things I am missing as I have not been participating in a good community like this previously. Maybe there's an obvious and easy solution that everyone (except me) knows about.

Re: Missing cue sheets - Seeking the final answer for tools or procedures

Reply #1
In case anyone reads this in the future, the best method I found so far is to manually look up the album on as the first step. This gave me better results than MusicBrainz. (Also, in my experience, apps like Picard will not identify a flac file for an entire album. Picard works as expected if I load individual tracks, but it does not identify whole albums. If anyone knows of something I am doing wrong, please tell me.)

Next I use python-wget to get the xmcd file and I use  jopadan's xmcd2cue to convert it into a cue sheet.

I have to further edit the cue files to generate flac tracks, but that was fairly simple to script.

The I use the really good unflac tool from here:
unflac: A command line tool for fast frame accurate audio image + cue sheet splitting

I put all of this into a little python script to automate it. (I'm running Linux, fwiw.)

The only part that is not automated is the first step. If anyone knows how to get an ID for from a whole album flac file automatically (such as with acoustic fingerprints) please let me know. I actually finished splitting all my flac files, but I would like to know for future reference.

Re: Missing cue sheets - Seeking the final answer for tools or procedures

Reply #2
Maybe cuesheet heaven:


Re: Missing cue sheets - Seeking the final answer for tools or procedures

Reply #3
I came here because I had the same question. I had accidentally deleted a bunch of files and wanted to recreate FLAC level tracks, but to my chagrin found that I was missing some CUE sheets even though I had the FLAC of the entire CDs. I found the reference to here and found the appropriate XMCDs. But this is where I was stuck, until I found Cuemaster, which can read XMCDs and create CUEs from them. So the steps are:

1. Find XMCD on
2. Create text file from XMCD file on gnudb.
3. Open text file in Cuemaster.
4. Save as CUE sheet.