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Pat, Mac Enthusiast
Category: Mac
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Experience:  10 years of systems administration experience in mixed Mac and Windows environments
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My question concerns the application SoundStudio3

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My question concerns the application "SoundStudio3" (audio-editing) for Mac. I can't find any phone/online support for SoundStudio and am trying to solve a problem that arose while recording .aif files.... Can any of you help me?
I'll be glad to help you with this problem. I have fairly extensive experience working with audio recording systems, including SoundStudio. There are a number of reasons this might be taking place. I need some basic information:

1. What kind of Mac do you have?
2. How much memory (RAM) does your system have?
3. What version of Mac OS X are you running?
4. Are you using your internal hard drive for recording, or do you have another drive?
5. How are you feeding audio into the computer? Is it via the computer's line in port, or a USB device?
6. How long are these "pauses"? Do they just sound like clicks, or does the audio actually cut out and go quiet? Do you lose a full second of audio, or just enough to notice something happened?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Hi Pat;; Thanks for offering to help! Here's the information you asked for; let me know if I've neglected anything... The kind of Mac I have is a MacBook Pro.3.1. I have 4GB RAM. I'm running the Snow Leopard version of Mac OS X, 10.6.3.    When recording, let's see... "SoundStudio", as an application, is on my internal hard drive, and shows in my "dock".... but the .aif-files themselves (because they're so memory intensive, often 200-to-500MB) I store on removable media Back-Up HD, with 1.4 TB available, connected via FireWire.) When I use SoundStudio, I launch it by double-clicking an .aif file already saved on the Back-Up HD. --In case this itself was an issue, I tried moving one of the .aif files back onto my internal HD's desktop and tried editing again; but alas, I got the same "audio-skip" issues, at roughly 30-second intervals.--

The way I am feeding audio into the computer is via the analog audio-in port, using an RCA-cable-adapter-to-stereo miniplug to connect a Technics audiocassette-deck to the Mac. (It never occurred to me to connect the Technics deck via USB device.)

As for the pauses themselves, the streaming audio feed "pauses" (its visible 'cardiogram' of motion on the screen visibly halts a moment then resumes) while recording is in progress. The result upon playback is a slight "click" or "glitch" in sound. The audio does not actually cut out and go quiet. I hadn't thought the glitches last a full second; but they are long enough to notice something happened, usually enough for a syllable or word or half-a-word to be excised...

Does this help? In the meantime, thanks again for the offer of assistance. --Rebecca
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Hi Pat,

Checking in. Was the additional info I sent above helpful, or is there anything else I need to let you know?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Hi Pat, Checking in again (SoundStudio3). Are you still there? --Rebecca
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Hi Pat, ....Haven't heard back from you for a week. Do you still plan to help me with my SoundStudio3 issue (I hope)? It would be nice to know. Still anxious to find a remedy to those excised half-syllables. Hopeful of assistance. --Rebecca
Rebecca, sorry about the long delay. The issue may be with the Macbook Pro's internal sound card. The problem you are describing sounds like sync errors in the analog to digital conversion circuitry. This is a typical problem when using digital to analog converters that either don't have proper clock sync, or in cases where the clock sync could wander. Typically, you would only hear such sounds when you connect two digital devices together. However, they also could occur if the computer holds off interrupts for too long during recording. Sometimes these problems can be alleviated by increasing the buffer size for the recording software. I'm downloading SoundStudio right now to see if I can find this setting for you.

If you want professional results, you may need a higher quality analog to digital converter box. USB devices are fine but often will exhibit sync errors like the ones you're already seeing. A firewire Analog to Converter box is the best way to get audio into your computer as firewire was specifically designed for low latency operations like audio and video recording.

This device from M Audio is one example of a professional grade firewire converter:

This one from Presonus is very good as well:

Both of those devices also come with software that has more features than what SoundStudio offers. However, you might find that you don't really need those extra features if all you are trying to do is convert tapes to digital.

I'll get back to you shortly on the settings within Sound Studio. However, my gut tells me that this is just an intrinsic problem with the line in interface on the computer. You should make sure that you have as many programs closed as possible when you are recording. You should basically be running SoundStudio and nothing else.

Edited by Pat on 4/28/2010 at 3:21 AM EST
There is no buffer size setting in SoundStudio, however, make sure you have the "Scratch Disk" set to a drive other than the internal hard drive. Click on the SoundStudio menu and choose "Preferences" Then make sure you choose the radio button that says "Custom Location" and choose a location on your external hard drive.
Pat and 5 other Mac Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Hi Pat,

I followed your advice about the scratch disk and being sure to run no other programs, and so far so good! Allow me another day or two to test it out and make sure (I've been crazy-busy this week) and then I'll register my acceptance! Many thanks, XXXXX XXXXX! --Rebecca
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
All seems good, Pat, thank you so much for the help!!! --Rebecca