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Adobe Audition mix, sounds completely unmixed!

Community Beginner ,
Jan 23, 2020 Jan 23, 2020

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Hello community, 

 

So here is a strange problem I have run into with Audition and I fail to understand... I've been using Audition for the last 4 years, excellent workflow.. Then just as I updated to the 2020 version really weird stuff happened. 
1- The samller problem. When I save my session (working on a video) the video playback goes black, the track is there but I have to Link it again. Happens randomly ...
2- The really NOT COOL problem: 
I use the same plugins, same settings, same audio interface... all same I used with the 2019 version. I mix my tracks, mainly music, sfx, dialogue, then bounce all. 
Surprise, the mixdown sounds COMPLETELY different, dull as if run through LPF, gain reduced (not the -3 db one), mids up, and not at all what it sounds in Audition. So, at the same time, if I play it in Audition, the mix is fine, then I play the exported file: the mix is messed up.
I imported the SAME mixdown tracks to Audition many times to test and well, they even look different, and sound bad. No plugins involved , not even the native Adobe ones. 

I tried this without any plugins, absolutely none and I get the same result. 

I suspected the MAC first, then I have LPX and ProTools 2019 in the same machine and they work fine. I even loaded the same OMF into each and still Audition is the only DAW that seems to get things done awefully in the mix. I used the same plugins in all 3.  

Anyone with similar problems? your help is so much appreciated. 

Thanks

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Audio hardware , Export , Import

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Community Expert ,
Jan 23, 2020 Jan 23, 2020

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Well, it's a Mac, so I'm groping in the dark a bit here... but are you using Catalina? We know that there are some security-related issues surrounding that, and moving files in and out of Audition. These are currently being worked on.

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Community Beginner ,
Feb 01, 2020 Feb 01, 2020

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Thank you Steve, that was a fast answer, and sorry I just posted it before going in a weel vacation .... 
Well, no I am still on Mojave 10.14.5, 

My personal computer has the Catalina and strangely Audition works fine there. I do not use it often though. 
One thing popped to my mind is: 
This sound confusion happened first after I installed VLC player, could that be the reason somehow? 





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Explorer ,
Mar 18, 2020 Mar 18, 2020

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I am running a Mac with Catalina and on the 2020 version of Audition. I have similar but perhaps not exactly the same issue. When I mix clips to a file, the dialogue clip (podcast) is WAY lower - like 6 to 8dB lower than when in the Multitrack view. The surrounding music and open/close dialogue clips are unaffected but the main interview clip (using a mild DeReverb plugin only, nothing else) is not at all what was mixed down.

This is extremely frustrating (and unpredictable as sometimes it doesn't do it - same effects applied, etc.) and seriously has me questioning the integrity of Audition mixes. Am I going to have to worry about this in a music production or something more complicated than a 4-track podcast?? I can't afford to waste time putzing with an inaccurate DAW.

I've found no solutions anywhere for this situation (Pan Laws are not the issue and did nothing when I switched it from -3dB and restarted the app) and I'm going out of my mind trying to work with this issue.

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Community Expert ,
Mar 18, 2020 Mar 18, 2020

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There's no evidence at all to suggest that Audition does anything to mixes other than what you tell it to. If this wasn't the case, there would be massive levels of complaint about it, and we'd have heard about it from loads of people. If you really have got a case of this happening, it would have to be reproducible before anybody would look at it. We'd need a sample of the audio concerned, and the session file, at a bare minimum. This would go for both of you - these being the only instances that have been reported here.

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Explorer ,
Mar 18, 2020 Mar 18, 2020

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There have been far more than just our two incidences posted here and elsewhere. The only solution that is offered is the Pan Law 'fix' - which isn't the cause of my issue anyway. Doing various searches for strings like 'audition CC mixdown volume reduced/inconsistant/changed/etc.' returns a lot of results that appear to be the same issue - mixdown is "selectively" reducing gain structure on tracks/clips.

I may end up posting the .sesx and clips to see if anyone can shed a light on any settings that I have set incorrectly or other user-sourced causes of the issue. But honestly, I'm not seeing it.

 

As a slight aside, Adobe tech support is utterly useless. After being shuffled around and on the phone for an hour +, the tech finally told me that he's not an expert in Audition (or any media app {seriously?! and neither is anyone in his department - but he'd keep my case open and do some searches of his own and get back with me if he finds anything. I don't expect to ever hear from Anurag. I asked about a level-2 support; he laughed and said they don't really have one and anyone in as close as he could get me to L2 would be just as ignorant about mixdowns and actually USING the product. Wow.

His only other suggestion was to reinstall the 2019 version of Audition (12.x) and see if the issue shows up there - which I don't remember ever having this issue in 12.x, so there may be merrit in that as a work-around. Jeez... Or I'll just abandon Adobe and go back o ProTools, which I really do not want to do, especially for a simple multi-podcast project...

I used to think Avid support was great in the mid-to-late '90s and then it totally sucked thereafter. This is far worse than Avid's support has ever been... They are great by comparison to Adobe. Oy vey!

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Community Expert ,
Mar 18, 2020 Mar 18, 2020

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Far more? I did your search, and I didn't find any. Perhaps you'd like to provide links to the threads?

 

Yeah, tech support is pretty variable - you need to be lucky. They have to deal with all of the Adobe products, and they do this using crib sheets - they never actually use the stuff, and their usual get-out is to send people here when it's something the crib sheets don't cover (which seems to be rather a lot of things...)

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Community Beginner ,
Mar 18, 2020 Mar 18, 2020

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I had the company get me a brand new Mac, running on Mojave, installed all software again, Audition made the same exact problem. 
I migrated back to ProTools, though I love Audition. 

Here is a suspect, this is ridiculous but it is the only explanation I can find. VLC player. (of course I had my data restored into the new Mac, including VLC was there)  

To explain, I have two other colleagues with the the same setup (Presonus 192, Genelec and Yamaha Monitors, Macs ...) so , for them Audition is working fine. For me, it was great untill the day I installed VLC media player to visualise some video. 

Nothing but that is different, and this is insane. 

Also, I do not think this problem is scarce, it's simply so strange that people do not know how to search for it. 

Please guys, try to have a fix for this as complicated as it sounds, it is really frustrating and people like your profuct! 

Thank you

 

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Community Expert ,
Mar 19, 2020 Mar 19, 2020

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So you're saying that you think it's not scarce, and yet you can't provide me with any links to all these people having the same problem. Right. I get the picture...

 

As for VLC player - no, I don't think that this could alter the way Audition does a mix. I would need to see the mechanism by which this could happen before attaching any credence to this at all.

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Community Beginner ,
Apr 27, 2020 Apr 27, 2020

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SteveG,

 

I am having what I believe to be the same problem.. I've tracked it down to using my Waves plugins.. If I include plugins on multi channel editor it sounds one way but when I mixdown it sounds another. This is beyond the -3db volume reduction that occurs.. I'm testing by doing the mixdown, then adding that file to my multitrack and then inverting the signal.. If I raise that track's volume and no plugins it completely mutes the output therefor an exact copy. But, if I use the plugins the sound does not mute out thereby proving the output is not what it is playing while in the multi track editor.. This is terrible!!!! It means that I cannot actually listen to a mix and get it done with the expectation that what the software produces is what I heard while mixing.. I want to know when this problem is going to be solved? I also am considering going to Pro tools because of this exact problem.. Please offer some acknolegment that this is real. I am backing up hamzamisterconductor on this one...    

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Explorer ,
Apr 27, 2020 Apr 27, 2020

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@Narlysoftware - it's interesting that you're seeing this associated with your Waves plugins. As I said in some post here earlier, the only plugin I was using was an Adobe built-in dereverb. In an odd attempt to narrow the focus when I first noticed this issue, I removed all plugins from all mixed tracks and still had the issue. So it looks like there are inconsistencies among the inconsistencies - making this a harder bug to shoot.

 

And, like you (and most engineer/producers out there) - if I can't trust my gear, I can't use it. And having basically no or useless support for software I'm paying almost $700/year to use certainly doesn't make things better. I'm as/more disappointed in Adobe's (utter and complete lack of) "support" for their media products. At least at Avid, you get at a minimum some kid who is taking a college class in Pro Tools/MC/etc. and has at least remedial experience in the product for which they are paid to answer calls for - beyond an overly generic problem tree that ultimately leads to 'go do a search on the Community forum site...'

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Community Beginner ,
Apr 28, 2020 Apr 28, 2020

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@chuckhawks. @Narlysoftware
I am so relieved someone else in the world is having this very very strange problem. I am mostly surprised by the lack of Adobe's support as well or sending any fixes about this. 

I have run all types of tests and still I am getting this problem with mixes on Audition, which I actually only use to clean up some VO now and doing my mixes on other DAW. 
I work for a multimillion media company, so the guys sent a crew from the IT to inspect this Audition behavior. This was done with I, and two of my sound engineers colleagues, and I can ensure you we all know very well what we are doing.
We tried this on a blank reformatted MAC, a completely new out of the box MAC and the old MAC. We tried the phase cancellation (using the same track and inverting phase like @Narlysoftware's solution), We tried comparing tracks through WLM Plus reports, spectral analysis with Cedar plugins, and an external analog unit, we tried taking Audition mixed stems and opening them on THREE DAWs and comparing with the same methods, and the fun part was that they sound different in the three DAWs. No not the -3db thing and not the DAW difference. They simply seem to have something encoded within (not my specialty here). We really went far with testing. 

The only way Audition worked normally was when it was installed on a brand new MAC (Catalina), ALONE. Audition is the only program installed and running on the machine with its native VSTs. Nothing else. 

Now, we have lots and lots of software licenses that are essential to our work, what to do about these? Maybe this is Apple's Catalina problem but it needs to be acknowledged because the moment we started installing and loading other VSTs, things went coo-coo again. 

I suspect Waves plugins as well. SteveG, maybe you should try this and then tell us what you've got. I stopped wasting my time and just had a month of hellish adaptation to other DAWs just because I felt highly deceived from Audition. However, Waves plugins (no matter which one), seem all together with Catalina and Izotope to make Audition useless for the moment. 

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Explorer ,
Apr 28, 2020 Apr 28, 2020

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THANK YOU, Hamzamisterconductor for taking all the time to go thru all the tests you did!! That's pretty extensive.

It's interesting you bring that (VST) issue up as a possible cause! The reason I say this is:

I don't have any 3rd party VSTs installed on my Mac where I see this issue BUT...

In the studio, we have a Windows PC (that recently got updated to the latest CC s/w, ugh...) where I was able to finish my project because the problem was not evident. I just installed Izotope RX 7 on that machine and out of curiosity I opened one of the podcast files from the 'problem' project in RX 7 (not Audition) and the file plays at 1/5th speed like there's a sample rate issue going on. The same exact, unaltered file plays perfectly in Audition.

I reached out to Izotope support (they actually HAVE a support solution) and they are scratching their heads over it. They agree that it looks like a sample rate conversion issue but all params seem to be set correctly.

 

I bring this up because Audition seems to be the common denomenator and you mentioned that the same mix sounded different across your several DAWs. I'm not ready to point the finger at Audition (only) just yet on this new development but I do find it very interesting that a file edited in Audition has an issue in 3rd party app that also seems to cause Audition problems.

 

I'm now using more fingers to scratch my head and pull hair out... This is VERY strange and immeasurably frustrating; not to mention expensive when considering the downtime caused by having to take a unit out of service due to the issue. (ProTools isn't installed on the Mac; yet.)

 

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Community Expert ,
Apr 28, 2020 Apr 28, 2020

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The only reason that there's any need for reasonable proof isn't to 'prove a point' or anything like that; it's simply to try to build a reproducible case. Without that it's very difficult to get the developers to take the appropriate degree of notice. Yes, all software has bugs. In this case we're talking about software running on different platforms and OS releases, and now with third party plugins implicated as well. In one sense it's a miracle that it runs at all...

 

The sample rate thing is interesting as far as actual sound is concerned. I don't know what happens about this on Macs, but on Windows, if you are not using ASIO, then if the sample rate you are playing your file at isn't the same as the default that the driver is set to, then the OS will resample it to that rate - without telling you it's doing that. And Microsoft resampling isn't good. But if something runs at a completely different speed in RX7 to the way it does in Audition, then I'd get very suspicious about the metadata. I have RX7 installed in the DAW upstairs, although I've never experienced that sort of problem with it, I must say. If you use RX7 as a plugin within Audition, and the same file, does the same thing happen?

 

However you look at it, if you have a file that runs at one rate in one app, and another rate in the other, then that's definitely evidence.

 

I don't have any Waves plugins, I'm afraid. But they have definitely had their problems in the past, certainly as far as Audition is concerned. IIRC last time there was a major issue, they ended up doing a rewrite; whatever it was, it wasn't Audition's fault. That was quite a while ago, though.

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Community Beginner ,
Apr 28, 2020 Apr 28, 2020

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So Steve,

 

I'd like to get this resolved with Audition rather than without. What would you suggest that I do with a resolution as the goal?

 

I'd appreciate your advice as well as any pull you would have to get this looked at by whoever is ultimatily the programer that fixes it..

 

Regards,

Cliff Jones Dad of the Triple Triggers Band..

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Explorer ,
Jul 16, 2020 Jul 16, 2020

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Now this level issue is happening on my Windows DAW after the recent Adobe CC updates. 

WTF ADOBE?!?!  Seriously - some of us are trying to make a living here, using your software. WHY are you making that harder, not easier? F---!!!!!!!

I have changed nothing in settings but haven't edited anything since the last CC updates. Now the gain of a mixdown file is FAR lower than when played back in the Multitrack view AND the gain structure between tracks is altered as well in the mixdown file.

I seriously don't get it and I'm also about done with this crap. Thanks a NOT Adobe... ugh

Obviously, I'm REALLY friggin' frustrated right now.

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Explorer ,
Jul 16, 2020 Jul 16, 2020

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Here's a .SESX file to gander if you're so inclined and can help figure out what's going on or what params I've got mis-set. I will say that I've attempted both pan law settings and it made no difference in the outcome. I think this .SESX has it set to log but -3dB exhibits the same symptom.

 

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/q8nmirtyc4z8jgr/AADM0-78l--ltDwDVXxbjJ6va?dl=0

 

Any help is appreciated. If I had hair, I'd be pulling it out right now.

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 19, 2020 Jul 19, 2020

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Hi chuckhawks, 
I am really sorry this has happened to you and is getting more real with direct implications on your work! 
During these last months, I have had more crashes in Audition than in the history of the world crashes in everything. Needless to mention the db drop and the HF, Mid frequencies drops well. 
I have been searching for a solution since that day and I am sorry to report that from my side, I have dropped it since I am lucky I could afford other DAWs. 
Seriously, try to use Reaper for the moment as a free alternative just to save your business. 
Try to export the same thing from Audition and Reaper and compare them, and maybe compensate what is missing from Audition's export with a plugin and export again and see. 

Otherwise, I know this is absolutely ridiculous and even too far-fetched but in my case, using MAC computers, I am certain that additional video codecs in the machine are most likely having a direct hand in this. 
My problem started right after I installed VLC player and I insist that something in it started this mess at least in my case. 
The other MAC machines without any additional media players such as VLC are still functioning normally, and they have not been updated from High-Sierra. That is the only "evidence" we have till now. 

Apparently other colleagues in our business either did not notice the difference or no one simply reported it it till now... 

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Community Expert ,
Jul 19, 2020 Jul 19, 2020

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There is currently an acknowledged issue with Multitrack and tracks being set to offline when they shouldn't be. There is also a fix for that, which is to download the latest beta version of Audition, using the CC app, which fixes it. The only difference with the beta version is that usage is monitored and there are a couple of diagnostic things added - other than that it's identical.

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Explorer ,
Jul 20, 2020 Jul 20, 2020

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Hey @SteveG_AudioMasters,

That's not exactly my issue (tracks being set to offline) but it does have me wonder if the issues might not somehow be related. I've never been aware/noticed tracks going offline that I didn't set as such. I am currently up to date with my CC Suite products. I don't do betas on any of my systems unless guided by a support person to do so when specifically attempting to resolve an issue - to avoid issues. My 13.07.38 version of Audition still exhibits the issue of multitrack interface playback being drastically different from a mixdown file created by that multitrack session. Especially and mainly gain differences. It hadn't been an issue on my Windows DAW until this last update came down, leaving me at least some option to work with but now the issue exists on all my workstations. Ugh.

 

A big part of me hopes that it IS related to the offline track issue so that it gets more attention and hopefully resolved soon. As it stands now, since there's a seemingly minority of us (but certainly a number of us) having the issue I'm encountering, we are undoubtedly getting NO attention from inside Adobe. Of course, that's a big curtain from which some wizard hides anyway. All I know is Adobe is about to lose my subscription over this as I can no longer afford to pay almost $700 to lose many thousands.

 

I really don't want that to happen but I feel I'm being left no choice. While I just renewed back in March (hoping, praying that this issue would be resolved or at least get some attention but feel I wasted money) so I'm stuck with this crap for a while but that certainly doesn't mean I have to use it, or recommend it to the many media companies/clients/musicians/podcasters/training companies, etc. for whom I consult.

Ultimately, we all lose.

 

Cheers & thanks for the update,

C

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Explorer ,
Jul 21, 2020 Jul 21, 2020

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LATEST

Well SteveG_AudioMasters_,

It seems I lied unintentionally... I didn't have the latest update (even though the CC main app said I did) as I experienced the 'offline' problem tonight. I came out here to the support community and on the Audition top thread saw a link to the 13.08 version. Updated and it did indeed fix that issue; thank goodness. That was a mess as a LOT of tracks went offline. Whew!  Thanks for the post earlier as that made it a lot quicker to figure out the issue.

 

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Explorer ,
Jul 20, 2020 Jul 20, 2020

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Thanks for the reply, hamzamisterconductor.

Yeah, I remember seeing references to VLC player from others that were having these same leveling issues on mixdown results back when I first started having the issue myself (some time ago) and began to research it. Unfortunately or fortunately, depending on how you look at it, I don't have VLC Player installed on either my MacBooks (High Sierra and Catalina) or the Windows desktop DAW so that kind of rules that out for me. I wish it was that simple...

 

You're the second person today to recommend Reaper (for different reasons) so perhaps I should pay attention to that! 🙂 Never used it but it looks pretty decent. I've still got licenses for older versions of ProTools and Media Composer but I fell out of love with Avid a long time ago due their trying to cram too much into too small a 'box' leading to lots of bugs and quite lacklustre support (hmmm, sounds familiar.)

I appreciate the suggestion and will have to check out Reaper.

 

Adobe sells these systems as professional grade but it seems over the past couple of years it's become treated more and more like it's aimed at amateurs/hobbiests. And professional grade support has seemingly never existed. I love the interface and concept of the CC Suite ecosystem and how (finally) Audition ties to Premiere Pro, etc. but at the same time, professionals can't afford these kinds of issues. It looks bad on everyone - Adobe, my company, me and ultimately the client if their end result is effected and has to be accepted due to time constraints. Ultimately, it's unacceptable and with no backward path now, it leaves Adobe's customers stuck. Not good.

 

I know I can occur as venting/whining/tantruming out here sometimes when I'm really frustrated and under a serious gun and I apologize for that. But I don't apologize for expecting an expensive pro-level system to behave as such AND be supported as such. That's really what's driving me away - it doesn't and isn't. And that is sad because, as said - I originally bought into the CC concept, seeing the long range potential. It's just not living into that potential and the end result is I/we lose revenue and customers - and we PAY to do that? Ugh! Yeah; no...

 

Again, thanks for the feels and suggestions!  They are much appreciated.

Cheers,

C

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Explorer ,
Apr 27, 2020 Apr 27, 2020

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It's late and I'm punchy, so please do pardon me but...

This is the first time I've had time to come back to this thread, so there was no time to post sesx files or do anymore hunting for evidence of replicability just so you can feel empowered there, Steve. And I can't help but laugh at your answer up the thread, as YOU yourself have actually replied in a different thread here to someone who was having seemingly this exact issue. (Your guidance as I recall was to adjust the Pan Laws setting in that instance.) So for you to say there's no evidence anyone else is having similar symptoms and that you can find no search results relative to this/similar issue... Dude; LMAOOL.

 

"There's no evidence at all to suggest that Audition does anything to mixes other than what you tell it to."  Well, my .WAV files would more than beg differ. You know what I call them? "Evidence..."

And, certainly if it's something I'm doing/telling Audition to do unwittingly; I have zero issue admitting or accepting that. All I care about is solving the problem. That said, I have over 40 years in the industry and have worked on equipment and projects that span from garage band to Emmy nominees and winners. So, like you Steve; I might have a small clue and a little credibility to back me up when I say I can find nothing that points to me as the source of this issue. I hope it is as simple as that but it appears not to be - as others are not showing up in Google searches - they are showing up here to respond to your post that they too are having this or a very similar issue. Real people not enough for you to believe that there might be evidence that Audition IS doing something unexpected??

 

I did solve my issue - by finally getting back home to the studio and finishing my project on a Windows based DAW that hadn't been updated yet. That doesn't solve the software problem in CC 2020 and/or Mac, regardless of whether it's user caused or an acutal bug but it got my invoice out the door for a finished project.

 

Relative to the thread though, at the end of the day, making sarcastic remarks and minimizing the fact that there are those who are suffering a serious show-stopping issue with no clear resolution serves no real purpose toward a resolution. Frankly, I'm a little surprised as I've read (and enjoyed/found helpful) many of your other posts and it seems clear to me that you for sure know your stuff in Audition. It looks to me like you've most often helped others in a friendly manner; so why on this issue does your approach seem more caustic? I still respect you and your advice but dude, I'm not feeling it on this issue. I get you're a cheerleader for Adobe/Audition but understand this stuff is FAR from perfect and will always have bugs. If you're not having those issues or don't understand them, that does NOT mean they are not happening/real/multi-occuranced.

 

On a whim, I typed in "adobe audition mixdown file is different" in a duckduckgo search (far fewer results than Google) and just on the first page there were at least 4 results describing serious inconsistencies between what is presented in playback inside the app vs. the resultant mixdown file. The results went back several years and acrosss several releases and casually digging into some of the links, others chimed in and added their stories of the same symptoms with no or confusing solutions in those threads.

 

My point - Stop shooting the messenger, or simply avoid submitting answers that serve nothing more than a troll-ish response. If you doubt we're having the issue, OK I've got no problem with that. But saying so repeatedly and demanding that we the folks who are indeed having the issue find you evidence that we're not alone (but none that proffer viable solutions) does nothing to resolve the issue, regardless of its source and simply wastes time. Just sayin'... Time I'm not going to waste simply for your entertainment; sorry. Well, actually, I'm not sorry - just how it is. I'd rather spend my time producing media in a predictable working system and/or finding ANSWERS to create such a system.

Besides, I come to the Community because I've exhausted the search engine results to my satisfaction with limited/no joy - not to accomodate demands of anecdotal proof that I'm not alone in having a problem. GMAFB.

 

Now, I've spent all the time I had to spend here typing this annoying tome to respond to something I'd normally ignore... So I guess I am going to waste some of my time onit and I guess I'm also somewhat the pot calling the kettle black, hunh. LOL

Sorry to be snarky and punchy. It's very late and I've had very little sleep over the past 2+ weeks.

Seriously though...

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