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Can people try something out for me?

Postby ConcertinaChap » Fri Mar 22, 2019 9:59 pm

Hi all.

If you've been following my adventures with ambisonics and Logic you will know that I can set Logic up so that I can record and mix with an ambisonic mic (in this case the Røde NT-SF1). However what I am having trouble with is loading pre-recorded ambisonic files into Logic and getting them to play back properly. That is, on the four machines I've been able to try this on the two that are running Logic 10.3.3 will load the files and play them correctly but the two running 10.4 won't (one is on 10.4.3 and one on 10.4.4). This important to me because I want to use a recorder such as the Zoom F4 to record an ambisonic file and move it to Logic for further work.

I was wondering if others could try this out for themselves so that we can tie down whether this is a bug with Logic 10.4 or something in the environment. I'll list the steps you need to be able to do ambisonic work - if anyone sees an error in this I'd be delighted to be told of it as that might explain all :)

1. Start Logic and make sure you’ve created a project with an audio track, as if you don’t a couple of options in Preferences will not be visible.

2. Go to Logic Preferences and under Advanced set Surround.

3. Go to Logic Preferences/I O Assignments/Output and set Surrround to Quadraphonic.

4. Ditto for Logic Preferences/I O Assignments/Input

5. Go to Project Settings/Audio and set Surround to Quadraphonic.

6. Now create a new audio track in the project with Input and Output both set to Surround (the Surround option might be at the bottom of a very long drop-down list for Input).

7. Finally import an ambisonics file using the Import Audio File option. You can find a suitable file in many locations on the web but Røde's own files are very good for the purpose and can be found here.

The actual test is simply to play the loaded file and watch the meters. If it's worked they should look like this:

Image

If it's failed they will look like this:

Image

That is only two of the tracks out of four will be playing.

One thing I've noticed when importing files is that the File Import screen shows some details about the files. In 10.3.3 it looks like this:

Image

Whereas in 10.4 it looks like this:

Image

I bet this is something to do with it.

So would people run the above test and post here what result they get? It should only take a couple of minutes.

If you want to play with ambisonics (and it's quite good fun) my original thread contains a workaround for getting a file into Logic 10.4 and then you can download the Soundfield By Røde plugin and try it out. It's quite an eye-opener.

I know, I'm a bit of an obsessive on this subject now but if anyone does this and I meet you at a SoSMeet or Synthfest or similar then I'll buy you a pint for sure!

TIA,

CC
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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby desmond » Fri Mar 22, 2019 10:10 pm

Ok, bear with me...

I haven't really been watching the thread, or looking into what's going on with the audio formats, but, I set up as instructed.

I downloaded the "skaters.wav" file from the link provided.

If I dragged the audio file onto the surround track I made, and chose "use existing", Logic placed one audio region on the track I made, and created three more tracks with a region on.

The first track (the one I created) had four meters, but only the middle two showed audio (as you show above). The remaining three tracks, also in surround mode, had single monophonic tracks on them.

*If* instead of dragging the audio file in, I used the "Import audio file" option (as suggested), I get what you describe above - a four channel meter, but with audio only playing in the middle two channels.

Now, this is Logic 10.4.4, on Sierra 10.12, if that makes a difference.

I also get the 10.4 "multichannel" info in the import dialog, as you show above.

Edit: I can try on 10.3.3 if you like, but so far my 10.4 behaviour matches yours.

I haven't really sat and had a look at the files, but I'm happy to try to troubleshoot some of this stuff with you to see if we can work out what's happening...
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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby Dave B » Fri Mar 22, 2019 10:12 pm

Just starting logic now...
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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby Dave B » Fri Mar 22, 2019 10:20 pm

OK, I followed your instructions exactly. It failed. I'm using 10.4.4 and I got the same results as you - the import stated that it was 'multi channel' and not quad. And I just get the middle two meters peaking - nothing at the other sides. I'm on 10.12.6 as well.

HTH. Now about that pint ... ;)
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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby desmond » Fri Mar 22, 2019 10:22 pm

I tried importing the "Crowd" file from the above link, and it played in all four meters in the surround channel.

So in this case, the format of the file seems to result in different behaviour.

Edit: Ok, this was sneaky. The file itself is 96K, but as I had Logic running at 44.1, the file was resampled on import, and the resampled 44K file played in all four meters (ie was decoded OK).

I reset Logic to 96K, then reimported, and without resampling, the file only played in the middle two meters again.

I'll try 10.3.3 next...

Edit: Ok, I see the same exact behaviour you see in 10.3.3 - "Quadraphonic" in the file import, all four meters play as expected in both cases.
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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby ConcertinaChap » Fri Mar 22, 2019 10:34 pm

Dragging a file on as you describe, Desmond, but taking the option to create 4 new mono files is an important step in my workaround to build a file that Logic 10.4 will recognise. The 96K is definitely sneaky, I'll have a play with that myself tomorrow.

Dave, you've defo earned a pint (as has Desmond, of course, but I await his 10.3.3 result).

Edit: result's in. Thanks to both of you. It's not me, then. There's been a change between 10.3 and 10.4 that's blown quadraphonic file loading. I'll report it to Apple and Røde.

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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby desmond » Fri Mar 22, 2019 10:34 pm

Also, in 10.4.4, if I drag the audio file in to the arrange page and let Logic create new tracks for it, I get one mono track per channel in the audio file (ie, four channels), and they play to the master output on all four meters...
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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby desmond » Fri Mar 22, 2019 10:38 pm

ConcertinaChap wrote:Edit: result's in. Thanks to both of you. It's not me, then. There's been a change between 10.3 and 10.4 that's blown quadraphonic file loading. I'll report it to Apple and Røde.

Yes, this indeed looks to me like a bug in Logic's multichannel import.

Importing a four-channel file to one surround track only plays channels 2 and 3, not 1 and 4.

So unless I'm misunderstanding some surround option that's influencing this, that defo looks like questionable behaviour worth reporting.
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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby ConcertinaChap » Fri Mar 22, 2019 10:45 pm

desmond wrote:Also, in 10.4.4, if I drag the audio file in to the arrange page and let Logic create new tracks for it, I get one mono track per channel in the audio file (ie, four channels), and they play to the master output on all four meters...

Indeed. My workaround is to drag the file in as you describe and create four mono tracks. If you set the output on each track to Surround the Surround Panner becomes available which enables you to set the tracks to the correct points on the compass (track 1 to top left, track 2 to top right, track 3 to bottom left and track 4 to bottom right). You can then bounce this to a file and hey presto Logic will handle it properly, as will the Soundfield By Rode plugin. (Actually I haven't checked what the File Load dialogue says about the file yet, I'll do that tomorrow).

Thanks again for your help, gents.

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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby desmond » Fri Mar 22, 2019 11:14 pm

ConcertinaChap wrote:(Actually I haven't checked what the File Load dialogue says about the file yet, I'll do that tomorrow).

It says... 'Quadraphonic'. :P

I'm having a look at the differences between the source multichannel wav, and the bounced multichannel version, to see if it sheds light on why they are being handled different...

I'm looking at the files in other editors to look at their meta data to see what I can find.

In Audition, the source wav has four mono channels, just named "1. Mono", "2. Mono" etc (so, not "Quadraphonic", but "Multichannel"), whereas the bounced version, which Logic recognises as Quad, has four channels named "Left", "Right", "Left Surround" and "Right Surround". (Might just be a naming thing and of no significance, I just mention stuff as I'm finding it...)

There really isn't much difference in meta data between the two files:

The "Encoding" is different (Microsoft PCM verses "Extensible"), and there is a bit of extra Metadata Logic put in, but otherwise not much difference...

Code: Select all
exiftool /Volumes/Internal\ HD/Users/justmoi/Downloads/skaters.wav
File Name                       : skaters.wav
Directory                       : /Volumes/Internal HD/Users/justmoi/Downloads
File Size                       : 22 MB
File Modification Date/Time     : 2019:03:22 21:10:26+00:00
File Access Date/Time           : 2019:03:22 22:30:00+00:00
File Inode Change Date/Time     : 2019:03:22 21:12:05+00:00
File Permissions                : rw-r--r--
File Type                       : WAV
File Type Extension             : wav
MIME Type                       : audio/x-wav
Encoding                        : Microsoft PCM
Num Channels                    : 4
Sample Rate                     : 44100
Avg Bytes Per Sec               : 529200
Bits Per Sample                 : 24
Duration                        : 0:00:45


exiftool /Volumes/Internal\ HD/Users/justmoi/Downloads/skaters_bounced.wav
File Name                       : skaters_bounced.wav
Directory                       : /Volumes/Internal HD/Users/justmoi/Downloads
File Size                       : 23 MB
File Modification Date/Time     : 2019:03:22 22:12:29+00:00
File Access Date/Time           : 2019:03:22 22:21:06+00:00
File Inode Change Date/Time     : 2019:03:22 22:12:31+00:00
File Permissions                : rw-r--r--
File Type                       : WAV
File Type Extension             : wav
MIME Type                       : audio/x-wav
Encoding                        : Extensible
Num Channels                    : 4
Sample Rate                     : 44100
Avg Bytes Per Sec               : 529200
Bits Per Sample                 : 24
Cue Points                      : (Binary data 28 bytes, use -b option to extract)
Description                     :
Originator                      : Logic Pro X
Originator Reference            :
Date/Time Original              : 2019:03:22 22:12:27
Time Reference                  : 158760000
BWF Version                     : 1
Coding History                  :
Duration                        : 0:00:45
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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby ConcertinaChap » Fri Mar 22, 2019 11:39 pm

Splendid stuff, Desmond. I'd had a look at both files using Wave Agent but that couldn't see any difference so I knew the difference was small. The "Quadraphonic" bit was significant then.

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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby desmond » Fri Mar 22, 2019 11:53 pm

I'm examining the files in all the apps I have, and simply can't find much of a difference between ones that Logic thinks are "multichannel" and ones Logic thinks are "Quadraphonic".

All the other apps just think both files are multichannel... :headbang:

I'm not quite in the zone this evening for looking through the headers in a hex editor just yet, but it *is* interesting to know what's going on here...
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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby ConcertinaChap » Sat Mar 23, 2019 12:06 am

No rush, mate!

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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby SethSD » Wed Mar 27, 2019 12:02 am

Thanks CC for your work on this so far!
I can also confirm that projects containing ambisonic audio created in 10.3 (worked fine at the time), exhibit the behaviour you've described above when opened in 10.4.4. I was supposed to be mixing an old Ambisonic / 5.1 project down to stereo today, and you can imagine how thrilled I was to find the project file completely unusable! Unfortunately your (ingenious!) workaround is no help for me, as I would need to re-edit the entire project from the original files, which would take days. Could you keep us updated on Apple's response? If it's a bug I'll wait for a fix, rather than trying to find a workaround. Thanks again! Seth
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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby ConcertinaChap » Wed Mar 27, 2019 12:31 pm

That sounds moderately horrible, my sympathy. I've submitted the bug via Apple Developer (number 49327099 if you're interested) and I'll pass on any feedback I get. However I would strongly recommend that you also log a bug, either via Apple Developer or Logic Feedback which is quicker but you can't track anything. The more reports they get the more urgent a fix might be prioritised.

Apple Developer: https://developer.apple.com/register/index.action

Logic Feedback: https://www.apple.com/feedback/logic-pro.html

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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby desmond » Wed Mar 27, 2019 1:06 pm

If you check the status of the report from time to time, let us know if it gets marked as a "duplicate", meaning the bug has already been filed and Apple are already aware of it.

Edit: I've also posted this as a bug here:
https://www.logicprohelp.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=42&t=141679

Mainly to document it and get any additional feedback from others, but I know the Logic devs do monitor that forum as well, and the more eyes the better...
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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby ConcertinaChap » Wed Mar 27, 2019 1:34 pm

desmond wrote:but I know the Logic devs do monitor that forum as well, and the more eyes the better...

Exactly so. Thanks, Desmond.

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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby ConcertinaChap » Thu Mar 28, 2019 11:33 am

No response yet from Apple. How long do they usually take to classify a bug report?

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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby desmond » Thu Mar 28, 2019 12:05 pm

ConcertinaChap wrote:No response yet from Apple. How long do they usually take to classify a bug report?

Who knows? If it's one guy, and he's got 12,000 reports to go through, it's not going to be a few hours...

In general, bug reports are usually "file and forget" as far as the end user goes, unless they get back to you requesting some more info. Just check back every once in a while to see if there have been any changes.
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Re: Can people try something out for me?

Postby ConcertinaChap » Thu Mar 28, 2019 12:15 pm

Right-oh. I have my workaround so it's not going to stop me doing what I want to. If I hear anything fro Apple I will certainly report back here.

SethSD wrote: Could you keep us updated on Apple's response? If it's a bug I'll wait for a fix, rather than trying to find a workaround. Thanks again! Seth

I think, based on Desmond's comment, you'd best not wait for Apple as it might be a while. I don't know if there's anything we can help you with but ask away, you never know.

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