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Muffled sound

 
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JassBird



Joined: 02 Dec 2010
Posts: 5
Location: Canada

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 1:51 am    Post subject: Muffled sound Reply with quote

A recent problem with both Amadeus Pro and iTunes 10. I am using an iMac (Intel Core 2 Duo) with OS 10.6.5. I am digitizing old recordings (remember vinyl?) to put on my iPod. Everything seems good until at some point, usually when the music is loud but not necessarily at its loudest and not distortingly loud, the volume fades and it sounds muffled. It's as if I were listening to the record playing on a sound system in another room and somebody slowly closed the door. Within a minute or so it will fix itself but not permanently. The change in volume is then imbedded in the file. iTunes will do the same thing to tracks imported directly from a CD and will pass the effect on to my iPod when I sync the iPod. It seems to me that this all started with the latest upgrade to iTunes, but why it affects Amadeus is a mystery. I have even opened a track from a CD with Amadeus and played it finding the same fading away during playback. I have combed through all the iTunes discussions, found similar problems and tried all the fixes suggested, all to no avail. I hope somebody has an explanation and, better yet! - a fix.
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Gerard Bik



Joined: 10 Nov 2006
Posts: 353

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 6:48 am    Post subject: Muffled sound Reply with quote

Very strange. This calls for some detective work. My first test would be to import the same track twice and look for differences. Amadeus can do that for you when you invert one track and past it over the other. If they are exact copies, they cancel out each other, if they differ, the sound that is left is the difference.

This test may tell if the behaviour is random or exact. When it is random, it may be a hardware problem.

Hope you find the cause.
Gerard


Quote:
A recent problem with both Amadeus Pro and iTunes 10. I am using an iMac (Intel Core 2 Duo) with OS 10.6.5. I am digitizing old recordings (remember vinyl?) to put on my iPod. Everything seems good until at some point, usually when the music is loud but not necessarily at its loudest and not distortingly loud, the volume fades and it sounds muffled. It's as if I were listening to the record playing on a sound system in another room and somebody slowly closed the door. Within a minute or so it will fix itself but not permanently. The change in volume is then imbedded in the file. iTunes will do the same thing to tracks imported directly from a CD and will pass the effect on to my iPod when I sync the iPod. It seems to me that this all started with the latest upgrade to iTunes, but why it affects Amadeus is a mystery. I have even opened a track from a CD with Amadeus and played it finding the same fading away during playback. I have combed through all the iTunes discussions, f
o
Quote:
und similar problems and tried all the fixes suggested, all to no avail. I hope somebody has an explanation and, better yet! - a fix.


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Gerard Bik grafische vormgeving
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JassBird



Joined: 02 Dec 2010
Posts: 5
Location: Canada

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 8:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Let's see if I understood. I opened a file that fades away when played. I then renamed the file and opened the original file again. I inverted the second version and pasted it over the first. As predicted, the one canceled the other completely. So it's not a hardware problem?
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Gerard Bik



Joined: 10 Nov 2006
Posts: 353

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 9:36 pm    Post subject: Muffled sound Reply with quote

Copies of the same digital file should be exact duplicates. (You just proved that!)

The procedure is correct, except that I would digitize the same track twice. That way the complete chain from vinyl to mp3 is used twice. When the sound muffling is caused by erratic behaviour of any component, the two different recordings of the same track will not be exact duplicates.

Hope I made it clearer now.
Gerard


Quote:
Let's see if I understood. I opened a file that fades away when played. I then renamed the file and opened the original file again. I inverted the second version and pasted it over the first. As predicted, the one canceled the other completely. So it's not a hardware problem?


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Gerard Bik grafische vormgeving
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Martin Hairer
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Joined: 08 Nov 2006
Posts: 1612

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 9:45 pm    Post subject: Muffled sound Reply with quote

Quote:
When the sound muffling is caused by erratic behaviour of any component, the two different recordings of the same track will not be exact duplicates.

Yes, but the two copies will definitely be out of sync, so they will never cancel
each other out... However, you could try performing the procedure twice on the
CD tracks that cause similar problems; these should in principle be completely
identical if you rip the same track twice... Regards,

Martin

HairerSoft
http://www.hairersoft.com/


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JassBird



Joined: 02 Dec 2010
Posts: 5
Location: Canada

PostPosted: Fri Dec 03, 2010 3:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There's three ways i can think of to get a track from a CD. I can copy the file containing the track from the CD. I can play the CD into Amadeus with a CD player as I am doing with my turntable and vinyl. Or I can import the CD into iTunes but then I'm not sure how to get it from iTunes into Amadeus. I would expect the second option would suit the purpose. Right?
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Gerard Bik



Joined: 10 Nov 2006
Posts: 353

PostPosted: Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:57 am    Post subject: Muffled sound Reply with quote

Keep in mind, the reason for this exercise was to look for the cause of the muffling effect.
One way is to record the same track twice. Another is to record the same track in different ways.

Use the three ways you mention to get three copies of the same track and try to find differences.
When differences are obvious, you don't need the procedure I described earlier. Just listen, or watch the waveforms in Amadeus.

To find a track from iTunes library select it and press Cmd-R to reveal it in the Finder. Drag a copy to open it in Amadeus.

happy experimenting
Gerard


Quote:
There's three ways i can think of to get a track from a CD. I can copy the file containing the track from the CD. I can play the CD into Amadeus with a CD player as I am doing with my turntable and vinyl. Or I can import the CD into iTunes but then I'm not sure how to get it from iTunes into Amadeus. I would expect the second option would suit the purpose. Right?


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Gerard Bik grafische vormgeving
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070 3554081

Website: http://www.biknewz.nl
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JassBird



Joined: 02 Dec 2010
Posts: 5
Location: Canada

PostPosted: Fri Dec 03, 2010 7:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think I've found it and I'm embarrassed to say that it probably has nothing to do with the computer. I've been listening to the output on both the computer and iPod with Bose headphones. They have deep cups to accommodate my in-the-ear hearing aids. Without the hearing aids I lose most of the treble. I discovered by accident that I don't hear the effect if I listen to the output through my Bose computer speakers which I had put aside in favor of the headphones (still wearing the hearing aids). There appears to be some weird interaction between headphones and hearing aids invoking a program in the hearing aids to limit the volume of some frequency ranges. The hearing aids are too intelligent for their own good! Looks like I will either have to put up with it or use speakers.

Thanks for your help and sorry to have created a phantom computer problem!
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Gerard Bik



Joined: 10 Nov 2006
Posts: 353

PostPosted: Fri Dec 03, 2010 7:34 pm    Post subject: Muffled sound Reply with quote

Great that you found it!
I knew it had to be something like one program or another reacting wrongly.
Sorry to hear about your hearing problems.

When listening through private headphones, can't you create an equalizer setting to provide the same correction as the hearing aids? It would eliminate one step of unwanted intelligence. Just a thought.

Regards
Gerard


Quote:
I think I've found it and I'm embarrassed to say that it probably has nothing to do with the computer. I've been listening to the output on both the computer and iPod with Bose headphones. They have deep cups to accommodate my in-the-ear hearing aids. Without the hearing aids I lose most of the treble. I discovered by accident that I don't hear the effect if I listen to the output through my Bose computer speakers which I had put aside in favor of the headphones (still wearing the hearing aids). There appears to be some weird interaction between headphones and hearing aids invoking a program in the hearing aids to limit the volume of some frequency ranges. The hearing aids are too intelligent for their own good! Looks like I will either have to put up with it or use speakers.

Thanks for your help and sorry to have created a phantom computer problem!



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Gerard Bik grafische vormgeving
Van Aerssenstraat 263
2582 JM Den Haag
070 3554081

Website: http://www.biknewz.nl
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MrEes



Joined: 10 Nov 2006
Posts: 64
Location: Finger Lakes, NY, USA

PostPosted: Fri Dec 03, 2010 8:20 pm    Post subject: Muffled sound Reply with quote

That sort of works, but it's still different sound being shot directly
into the auditory canal.

Might I suggest http://www.bluecataudio.com/Products/Product_FreqAnalyst/
for use in the future? I've found that it's helpful to have a second
or third check on reality when dealing with hearing loss compensation.

m.
--
Michael Rees
Composer &c. <http://soundsgrate.net>

You don't really notice how much of this
stuff has sharp edges until it gets dark.

On Dec 3, 2010, at 2:33 pm, Gerard Bik wrote:

Quote:
When listening through private headphones, can't you create an
equalizer setting to provide the same correction as the hearing
aids? It would eliminate one step of unwanted intelligence. Just a
thought.

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JassBird



Joined: 02 Dec 2010
Posts: 5
Location: Canada

PostPosted: Fri Dec 03, 2010 8:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The hearing aids keep changing their "equalizer" settings on the fly according to whatever algorithm has been used to program their wee computers. I can't imagine being able to counter that with an equalizer setting that you could only change manually. I guess I'll have to live with it. And it certainly could be worse!
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