Strange Audio Problems

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Strange Audio Problems

Postby nfnte on 10/28/2014, 9:36 pm

I am having a very strange problem. A client gave me a HDD with Canon 5D mark II footage to edit. I actually edited an entire video yesterday with zero issues.
Today, I am going thru the capture scratch and i can barely hear the audio. Its so bad, I cant hear it to edit. I click on the clip in the capture scratch folder and hit space bar to preview and barely any audio level. I double click on it and it opens up in quicktime and barely any audio level. I import to FCP 7 and the same problem. I have restarted my MacPro multiple times. A couple of times I will get full audio then it goes away in a few seconds. Ive tried everything I can think of. I cleared the PRAM in my MacPro.
Also, to clarify as an editor, I have multiple videos on my desktop. I can click on anyone and the audio is perfect in all other clips. I only barely any have levels on this 5D footage. What's strange to clarify is all the audio was there yesterday and I edited an entire video. I also transferred all the capture scratch and entire project folder to my internal hdd from his external hdd and no difference. I get perfect audio when going to youtube and watching a video, so its not my audio setup. It has to be something with his footage, but I dont understand why it worked perfectly yesterday.

Any thoughts?
Please help!!!!
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Re: Strange Audio Problems

Postby Michael_Szalapski on 10/29/2014, 8:27 am

What software do you use to edit?
What OS are you using?
You get fine audio levels in other video files on your system and in your editing software?
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Re: Strange Audio Problems

Postby Farmfield on 10/29/2014, 8:45 am

nfnte wrote:I am having a very strange problem. A client gave me a HDD with Canon 5D mark II footage to edit. I actually edited an entire video yesterday with zero issues.
Today, I am going thru the capture scratch and i can barely hear the audio. Its so bad, I cant hear it to edit. I click on the clip in the capture scratch folder and hit space bar to preview and barely any audio level. I double click on it and it opens up in quicktime and barely any audio level. I import to FCP 7 and the same problem. I have restarted my MacPro multiple times. A couple of times I will get full audio then it goes away in a few seconds. Ive tried everything I can think of. I cleared the PRAM in my MacPro.
Also, to clarify as an editor, I have multiple videos on my desktop. I can click on anyone and the audio is perfect in all other clips. I only barely any have levels on this 5D footage. What's strange to clarify is all the audio was there yesterday and I edited an entire video. I also transferred all the capture scratch and entire project folder to my internal hdd from his external hdd and no difference. I get perfect audio when going to youtube and watching a video, so its not my audio setup. It has to be something with his footage, but I dont understand why it worked perfectly yesterday.

Any thoughts?
Please help!!!!

Try downloading VLC - I think VLC uses all internal codecs, demuxers and such, all other apps you referred to uses the built in QuickTime decoding tools in OS X thus with VLC using it's own, you'll see if this is a QuickTime issue or not...

Oh, and I might be totally wrong, hehe... ;)
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Re: Strange Audio Problems

Postby toddday on 12/9/2014, 10:37 pm

The best thing you can do, in most situations, is to create a real, usable format prior to editorial. FCP 7 does not handle Canon's codec all that well -- h.264 and integer (little endian). Especially if you have anything that will run long. Not only that but frame accurate editing is out of the question.

Convert your clips to ProRes files utilizing PCM or uncompressed audio. You will find that FCP 7 will be a lot more friendly and less time consuming. Remember, FCP 7 is a 32 bit app and has to do a lot more "thinking" and work to deal with complex codecs such as h.264. Also, if you are exporting your final sequence as, say, a 422 HQ ProRes file then your final render time will be pretty lengthy... and excrutiating. due to the fact that your current render files and sequence are using h.264 files. If your sequence already contains a codec that you will be exporting to then you have it made. Exports will be faster and won't bring unexpected surprises.

Last but not least... if you won't be sending out audio stems to an audio post facility, I would recommend checking the levels of your clips before editing. You can also just look at the waveform and know that you might be screwed if they "look" low. In that case, use soundtrack pro or logic to "normalize" the levels and bring them back into FCP 7. You will be a lot better off.

While VLC is great software, I only use it to view files whose codecs I may not have. You can do a conversion through VLC but I have found it to be unreliable at times.

In the end (as you probably know but throwing it out there for others), be prepared. If you are the editor, graphic designer, or colorist, you need to know what cameras, audio recording devices, and formats that you will be dealing with. If the on-set DIT will not be doing conversions then you will have to do them yourself. Make sure the client knows this immediately as it means additional time and money. If the DIT will be doing it, spec out exactly what format you require down to codecs, bit rates, and channels. Workflow is key and what you are going through is no fun.

I know this is a little late as you posted this two months ago. Hope you have some hair left and got the job done.
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