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stantoine
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Serious audio export frustration.

Postby stantoine » Fri Jan 25, 2013 2:34 am

I'm just preparing drum tracks for a new recording project and am running into the same problem I had previously (on a different computer). I'm running BFD 2.3.0 build 38 64bit on an Intel Core Duo 3GHz machine with 4GB of Ram. The executables are on the main C: drive and Data is installed on a dedicated data drive (SATA) with no fragmentation. My audio interface is a Tascam US-122L and I'm using the latest ASIO4ALL driver (1024 samples).

I am using BFD in standalone mode and am just sequencing grooves to make a very simple drum track. I want to export the individual drums to separate .wav files for import into Reaper. The problem is that I seem unable to export these audio tracks without getting dropouts. It is most frustrating with the cymbals but it also occurs in other drums. When I open the individual .wav files in Audition and view them with the Spectral Frequency Display, you can clearly see a lot of gaps in the audio, mostly in the tails, but sometimes right in the initial attack. And the gaps aren't always in the same places.

I have been through the forums and have read of many people with the same problem, but none of the fixes suggested have worked for me. I've tried rendering in Offline mode, I've bussed each drum to it's own mono channel, I have tried 2 days worth of tweaks to the Engine and I've just run out of ideas.

Obviously I can just grunt it out like I did last time by editing the .wav files and copy/pasting good events over the bad ones, but do I really need that kind of workflow here?

I really don't fully understand why it's so hard to render these audio-based drum sounds out to another audio file. Reaper and every other DAW seem to have no great problem reading and writing audio at the same time. Or am I totally missing something?

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SKoT_FX
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Postby SKoT_FX » Fri Jan 25, 2013 10:33 am

"Offline" button will probably help, at the bottom of the BFD2 screen. This tells BFD2 to take as much time rendering as it needs, which can help with slower disks.
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jord
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Postby jord » Fri Jan 25, 2013 11:53 am

Where are you exporting your tracks? If it is the same drive that you are reading your BFD audio or your system, you are more than likely to run into dropouts because of disk traffic.

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stantoine
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Postby stantoine » Fri Jan 25, 2013 8:15 pm

Thanks for the responses.

I use Offline mode, and this is what confuses me; why would there be still be gaps when it's a non-realtime render?

I always write to a separate disk from where the data is stored. The program files are installed on my c: drive and the drum data is on d: drive. Might there be a conflict exporting the audio to c: drive?

Might there be something else running on my system that would interfere with the BFD processes?

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jeremycanfield
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Postby jeremycanfield » Sat Jan 26, 2013 5:36 am

Interesting. I'm pretty sure this isn't an issue with BFD2 itself. This is to say that if you were to install BFD2 onto a different computer, you probably wouldn't have this problem, which makes me suspect it's "something" with your computer. When you are exporting, you are indeed using your computers RAM and CPU. You can see this for yourself by launching your task manager, going to the "processes" tab and notice the number in the CPU and memory columns will increase for the BFD2.exe process.

An even better way to perhaps narrow this down would be to go to your start menu, type in "perfmon" (thats short for performance monitor) and make a log then start using BFD2. If anything is getting maxed out, that could be the issue.

However, with all this said, I think its the ASIO4ALL driver. I have 2 computers. One has a Delta1010 Driver, the other has the ASIO4ALL driver. Perhaps 5% of my exports with my Delta1010 have the same issue you are having. I just re-export. However, I'm always running into weird issues with ASIO4ALL.

By the way, it's nice to meet another whom exports from BFD2 into Reaper. That's my technique, also.

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jord
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Postby jord » Sat Jan 26, 2013 1:43 pm

I don't think Offline mode is going to save you in this case. Your C: drive is your system drive and your D: drive is your where your BFD data is stored. Both are high traffic drives. I run a 3 hard drive setup (4 if you count the SSD drive as my boot drive) and have no export issues at all. Due to the number of drum channels that BFD2 reads and the audio stream(s) that it writes, it needs a lot of disk bandwidth and while SATA is very fast, it's bandwidth is limited. Getting another (e)SATA drive will probably take care of your export issues.

You may also want to double check your RAM and Disk Cache settings in your BFD2 preferences. They may either be too low or too high. Either of these will have adverse effects on your exports.

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DrNewcenstein
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Postby DrNewcenstein » Fri Feb 08, 2013 6:25 am

I have the application installed on my 7200 rpm SATA system drive, the data is on a physically separate 7200 rpm SATA internal drive (F:\), and I export audio to an external usb drive (G:\ - not sure of the speed of that one). I have audio dropouts regularly. especially in the cymbals.

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jeremycanfield
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Postby jeremycanfield » Sat Feb 09, 2013 2:16 pm

When I get audio dropouts, it's also almost always only the cymbals. hm...I wonder why. Anyways, not a big deal at all, because I just reexport. This little problem pales in comparison to issues with recording drums myself, so I'm still a totally happy camper.

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jmcecil
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Postby jmcecil » Sat Feb 09, 2013 3:35 pm

Keep in mind that just because you have multiple drives doesn't mean your motherboard HD controller has independent HD channels. Many motherboards have serious issues with HD bandwidth management.

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jord
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Postby jord » Sat Feb 09, 2013 3:58 pm

Those ones are usually the low-cost motherboards which either have ganged SATA ports or poor chipsets. In those cases, it's best to get a good SATA card, if not a more capable motherboard.

I have the application installed on my 7200 rpm SATA system drive, the data is on a physically separate 7200 rpm SATA internal drive (F:\), and I export audio to an external usb drive (G:\ - not sure of the speed of that one). I have audio dropouts regularly. especially in the cymbals.


That's because USB has a very narrow bandwidth. It's great for data because you can burst those packets across the bus. Audio is a different story because it relies on a constant stream of data, rather than a burst of it.

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jmcecil
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Postby jmcecil » Sat Feb 09, 2013 5:12 pm

jeremycanfield wrote:When I get audio dropouts, it's also almost always only the cymbals. hm...I wonder why.

Because cymbals have long decay times. You might be having "number of voice" issues. Kind of artificial choke. There are streaming and caching settings that you can play with.

DrNewcenstein
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Postby DrNewcenstein » Sun Feb 10, 2013 3:44 am

Hmm, couple of corrections: I'm actually exporting audio to the same drive my Data is stored on (I:\ - internal SATA 7200rpm). I may have found my problem :lol:

F:\ drive is also an internal 7200rpm SATA drive with BFD folders. Apparently I've bjorked my BFD install so many times that I've forgotten which drive was supposed to do what :lol:

(copies a bunch of files from I:\ to F:\)
Ok, so now that I've got all my BFD stuff separated from my export stuff AND my system, time to see if I still get issues.



Anyway, even with that setup, my dropouts were largely limited to one cymbal: the Zildjian 16Z Custom Medium Crash. Every so often I get faint dropouts in my hi-hat and snare, but 90% of the time, it's that one Zildjian. I also get distortion in my OH, Amb3, and Room mics unless I set the snare and kick routing to those mics in the kit view to 0.

DrNewcenstein
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Postby DrNewcenstein » Sun Feb 10, 2013 4:28 am

Ok, so I exported a drum track I'd done previously, using the new drive/content separations (program on system, data on SATA 1, exporting to SATA 2). The crash now only has 2 gaps, which is roughly 90% better than before, where almost every hit had a gap.


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