What Is a BRSTM File?

Some Wii and GameCube games store audio data in BRSTM files

What to Know

  • A BRSTM file is an audio stream used by some video games.
  • You can open one with VLC via the Media > Open File menu.
  • BrawlBox works, too. It's also how you can convert from BRSTM to WAV. Use Zamzar to save that to MP3.

This article explains what a BRSTM file is, how to open it, and how to convert it to a different audio file format.

What Is a BRSTM File?

A file with the BRSTM file extension is an audio stream used in some Nintendo Wii and GameCube games. It typically holds audio data for sound effects or background music played throughout the game.

The programs below let you open the file on a computer, as well as create your own BRSTM file from existing audio data.

You can read about the technical aspects of this format at WiiBrew.

BRSTM files

A similar audio format, BCSTM, is used on the Nintendo 3DS for the same purpose. BFSTM is another file with a similarly spelled extension that's used to hold audio data, too, but it serves as an updated version of the BRSTM format.

How to Open a BRSTM File

BRSTM (and BFSTM) files can be played on a computer with the free VLC program, but you'll have to use the Media > Open File menu to open it, since the program doesn't natively recognize the file as a supported format. Then, be sure to change the browse parameter to search for All Files instead of just the regular media file types the program opens.

BrawlBox is another program that can open these files. It's entirely portable, which means you don't have to install it. Depending on the version of the software, the BrawlBox.exe application you need to open might be in the \BrawlBox\bin\Debug\ folder.

If BrawlBox downloads in an archive format like a RAR or 7Z file, you'll first need to use 7-Zip to open it. 

How to Convert a BRSTM File

BrawlBox can convert BRSTM to WAV through Edit > Export. In the Save as type section of the save window, choose Uncompressed PCM (*.wav).

If you don't want the file to remain in the WAV format, you can then use a free audio converter to convert WAV to another audio format like MP3. For a quick conversion, we recommend using an online converter like FileZigZag or Zamzar.

Another free and portable tool called Brawl Custom Song Maker (BCSM) can do the opposite: convert WAV, FLAC, MP3, and OGG files to BRSTM. When finished, the file will be saved in the program's installation directory with the name out.brstm.

The BCSM application comes downloaded in a ZIP archive, so after you extract the files, open BCSM-GUI.exe to start it.

Still Can't Open It?

If the file doesn't open at this point, after trying the suggestions above, there's a good chance you're misreading the file extension. When this happens, you're trying to open a file in an incompatible program, which will most likely lead to errors.

It's easy to confuse other file types for this one because some file extensions are really similar. A BST file, for example, might at first appear related to a BRSTM file, but it's really a BibTeX style document. Another is the Exchange Streaming Media file format that uses the STM file extension.

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