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What is an ISRC code?

The ISRC (International Standard Recording Code) is the international identification system for sound recordings and music video recordings.

Each ISRC is:

  • A unique and permanent identifier for a specific recording (digital fingerprint)
  • A way to track and identify recordings (used widely by digital services and retailers)
  • The key to royalty collection for recordings
  • Readable by hardware already used in the recording industry

The ISRC consists of twelve characters representing country (2 characters), registrant (3 characters), year of reference (2 digits) and designation (5 digits).

Country Code

Two characters (ex. CB) identifying the country of residence of the registrant at the time the ISRC is allocated.

As of June 1, 2021, Canada's country code has changed to CB for new registrants only. Registrant codes assigned before this date will continue to use the original CA country code.

Registrant Code

Three characters ex. (PL0) assigned by CONNECT to the registrant. These codes are unique for each record label/master owner. This code does not change if ownership of the recording changes or if licensed to another repertoire owner.

Year of Reference

Two digits ex. (24) identifying the year in which the ISRC is allocated to the recording (usually the year in which the full mastering process for the recording is finalized).

Designation Code

Five digits ex. (00001) assigned by the producer/owner, as they choose.

Responsibilities of an ISRC Registrant

  • Assign the Designation Code for each unique recording
  • Keep a detailed record of all ISRC codes assigned
  • Include the ISRC code in all relevant documentation concerning a recording

For additional information, please visit:

Example Codes for an Entire Album

Track Name: ISRC Number:
Recording #1 CBPL02400001
Recording #2 CBPL02400002
Recording #3 CBPL02400003
Recording #4 CBPL02400004
Recording #5 CBPL02400005
Recording #6 CBPL02400006
Recording #7 CBPL02400007
Recording #8 CBPL02400008
Recording #9 CBPL02400009
Recording #10 CBPL02400010