View Full Version : Final Cut audio problem: "cracks" and "pops"

Oct 19, 2009, 07:29 PM
Hi everybody!

I am a very happy switcher whith a MacBook Pro who is, in general, really satisfied with the change. I got the mac principally to edit video (HD) with Final Cut Express, so now I'm beginning to learn to use it and, unfortunately, here it is my first problem, with my first video project.

Well, the thing is that I imported a song and placed it in a mute video (I deleted the original audio, just want the music), and it doesn't sound good, it makes some noises like "cracks" and "pops", which are randomily distributed all along the song, specially noticed in the low parts of the song. I exported it, but the problem is still there. The song seems not to be the problem, cos I listen to it in iTunes and it sounds perfect, and I have checked with other tracks and they have the same problem, so the problem must be from Final Cut...

Can somebody help me, please?

Thanks so much

Oct 23, 2009, 08:52 AM
Something to try:

Convert your music file in iTunes to a 48KHz AIFF file - under iTunes, Preferences, General, Import Settings, Import using: AIFF Encoder, Custom: 48KHz, 16bit, Stereo.

Then use this file in your project rather than the one you currently are using.

Just a hunch, but Final Cut Pro used to do the same thing with MP3's and any non AIFF file type. Might be that Final Cut Express still struggles to transcode on the fly.


Oct 24, 2009, 06:44 AM
Thank you so much.

I did it, I went to Import Settings and set 48Hz, 16 bits, stereo. But then I imported the same song to Final Cut, and, when I add it to the sequence and render it, it still has the 44Hz format. I mean, I changed the settings, but there must be something I did wrong, or maybe something I didn't, cos it doesn't change the format when I import it...

Any idea??

Oct 24, 2009, 07:22 PM
Are you importing the new version of the song? ie. the one that you converted?

I neglected to explain the full file conversion process:

In iTunes, convert the song by following the procedure I gave previously, then select your original file in the iTunes Library, then under the Advanced menu in iTunes, select Create AIFF version. This makes a new file at the settings selected earlier. You should see it appear below the original file in your library.

It is this new file that you need to import into your project. It shouldn't require rendering in the timeline as it will be a 48KHz file.

Hope this helps.

Oct 25, 2009, 10:35 AM
Perfect. It asks me to render, but it sounds perfectly anyway.

Thank you one more time!

Oct 25, 2009, 07:40 PM
The need to render the audio still puzzles me ...

In the browser bin where your sequence is, you should be able to scroll along and see what the settings are for your current sequence - specifically you want to check the Aud Rate (Audio Rate) ... You want to match this setting with the audio you bring into your sequence (this way it won't require rendering) - so if the Aud Rate says 44.1KHz under it, that is the rate you need to convert your tracks to in iTunes. (Other rates will play back, as you have found, but will require rendering.)

Generally, the less rendering you need to do, the better (as it takes time, drive space etc.)

Hope this helps.


Oct 25, 2009, 07:52 PM
The need to render the audio still puzzles me ...

FCP is a non-linear editor. The edits and any track automation needs to be applied and all the audio tracks have to be mixed. Also the data must be copied out of the audio file(s) and re-wriiten out to the renders output file.

If you have not applied any adjustments and you only have the one audio track then still, the data must be copied. This is still referred to a "rendering"

Oct 26, 2009, 01:56 AM
Dropping a single music track onto the timeline shouldn't require a render though. If it does something is either wrong w/the seq settings, the audio track or both.


Oct 28, 2009, 05:55 AM
Well, I actually checked the properties and it is 48Hz, not 44, but it still needs render.
When I put a video or audio item in the sequence, it always needs render. If it's audio, it has the red line up that means "need render", and if you play it, you hear a particular noise, like a weird alarm. Now, with the AIF converted song, I can hear the song without rendering, but with that noise added...

Thank you everybody!

Oct 28, 2009, 11:20 AM
Your project is not setup properly because nothing should have been rendered just because it's put in the timeline. Like I said before, either your source files are not formatted properly, your sequence isn't setup properly or both.