9 Replies Latest reply: May 9, 2012 4:08 AM by Hepcat B
Hepcat B Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

I've been using FCP X for a couple of weeks, and as far as I know this is the first appearance of this problem, as least as I've noticed. 

 

Certain imported audio files are suddenly sounding incredibly lousy.  They are mp3's but ripped from CD's with high quality settings, and the tracks sound very good in my iTunes.  In FCPX however they sound like the lowest compression quality imaginable - extremely tinny with warped high end and very little low end, mid range also very squashed.  It seems to have started happening with various imported tracks, but at random; some sound fine, and the good and bad tracks are scattered in terms of when they were imported, some were done earliest, then some are fine, then others later are also terrible. 

 

None of the audio attached to imported video has been affected.  The most peculiar anomaly is that with one particular track, it sounds bad when played in the browser and bad when newly placed into the timeline.   However, section that was placed in the timeline about a week ago, sounds totally fine!   This seems to clearly indicate something weird is going on with my audio once it is inside the progam, not on the way in. 

 

I don't know if this could possibly effect anything, but the problem may possibly have started after working on trying to edit music clips in connected storylines, and at the time I first noticed it, I was having a horrendous time trying to match clips togehter without pesky invisible gaps, using zoom and precision tool to pull the ends appart and delete gaps.  Perhaps not coincidentally, I believe this was the first time I was joining detached audio from a video clip (the audio was high quality AAC as encoded by iSkysoft Media Converter from DVD sources,) joining the audio in connected storyline with music from mp3 sources.  Once again, the audio from the video clips, attached or detached, has never had a problem, only the mp3's. Anyway, after finally getting the edits to behave as I wanted, I started noticing the music track in question sounding like dookie.

 

I am using optimized media, once again from high quality mp3 sources. 

 

I have updated from 10.0.3 to .4, and restarted the computer, nothing is helping.  And once again, an early ingested music clip that sounds terrible in the browser and when newly placed in the timeline still sounds fine where it was originally placed in the timeline early in the project.  Crazy.

 

Any help is appreciated.  This is the first sign of a series performance failure I have experienced with the program, and it is very disconcerting!

 

Thanks,

Brian 


Final Cut Pro X, Mac OS X (10.7.3)
  • 1. Re: Music Sounding Terrible in FCP X ?!?!
    Hepcat B Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Just did a new test, deleting a file that sounded terrible in the browser, then re-importing.  Click in the browser, file sounds great.  Add a piece to connected audio storyline, sounds great.  A minute later, back in the browser, newly imported file suddenly sounds like crap again!  But in the timeline, still sounds good.  If anything, I would think it was only possible for file to sound okay in browser but not okay in Timeline, not vice versa.

     

    Anyone have any idea what could be going on?

  • 2. Re: Music Sounding Terrible in FCP X ?!?!
    Tom Wolsky Level 10 Level 10 (106,175 points)

    Always avoid using compressed audio in FCP. Convert to AIFF.

  • 3. Re: Music Sounding Terrible in FCP X ?!?!
    Hepcat B Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for the response.

     

    I've read this mentioned in other threads, but also mention of the fact that when using optimized media, FCP converts it to AIFF format anyway.  Is it confirmed that doing so yourself in advance sometimes solves problems? 

     

    And isn't AIFF a form of compression itself, the difference being that it is at CD resolution? 

  • 4. Re: Music Sounding Terrible in FCP X ?!?!
    Tom Wolsky Level 10 Level 10 (106,175 points)

    Technically everything is compressed. Sound isn't digital after all. Something's been done to it to sample the sound and convert it to 1s and 0s.

  • 5. Re: Music Sounding Terrible in FCP X ?!?!
    Hepcat B Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Right, that's what I'm saying, my point being, what's the difference?  Given my earlier comment about FCP converting imported files to AIFF, which seems a simple enough process, what leads you to believe that converting it before it goes into FC will make any difference?  Not trying to be argumentitive, just looking for some clarification about the reasoning of why it could solve the problem. 

  • 6. Re: Music Sounding Terrible in FCP X ?!?!
    Tom Wolsky Level 10 Level 10 (106,175 points)

    Once it's sampled AIFF doesn't compress the data. Both AAC and MP3 do, MP3 significatly, not only dumping audio information, but making the file processor intensive. FCP, like most video apps, is designed to give priority to video processing above all else. All video apps recommend using uncompressed formats, AIFF, WAV, or some others.

  • 7. Re: Music Sounding Terrible in FCP X ?!?!
    Hepcat B Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Okay, so if FCP converts a file to AIFF for optimized media, shouldn't it work just as well that way?  Why does it make a difference if you convert it before inporting rather than during?  Am I missing something?

  • 8. Re: Music Sounding Terrible in FCP X ?!?!
    Tom Wolsky Level 10 Level 10 (106,175 points)

    FCP doesn't optimize imported audio files to AIFF.

  • 9. Re: Music Sounding Terrible in FCP X ?!?!
    Hepcat B Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I thought I read somewhere on here that it does, but importing as AIFF seems to have fixed the problem, so I assume you are right.  Thanks.