No Audio

I imported footage recorded on an AJA Cion in ProRes 444 (HD). The audio is dual mono, 24-bit 48KHz, and it is apparently undetected in HitFilm. I get no audio, no waveforms, nothing indicated on the meters in HitFilm. 


  • Here's a sample clip. In HitFilm it has no audio... in QuickTime player, the audio is clean.

  • Aladdin4dAladdin4d Moderator
    edited January 2016

    This one is a little weird. It is indeed exactly what you described, dual mono, meaning two completely separate audio tracks. This is probably why HitFilm doesn't recognize the audio, it can't handle multiple audio tracks. The weirdness comes in with other applications. Some automatically combine the two tracks into a single, dual mono, stereo track on import. Others choke on the audio just like HitFilm even though they can handle multiple tracks and at least one more can't even tell how the audio is encoded, just that there's two tracks. 

    • Sony Vegas and Sound Forge -  Combine the tracks into a single, dual mono, stereo track on import
    • Audacity with FFMpeg import plugin - Imports the audio as two separate tracks.
    • MediaInfo - Reports two separate audio tracks
    • Izotope Rx - Import fails with this clip but I have imported ProRes with stereo audio before without issue 
    • Avidemux - Recognizes that there's two tracks but can't determine the correct format
    • VirtualDub with FFCHandler QuickTime import plugin - Imports the audio as two separate tracks.
    • Mpeg Streamclip - Combines the tracks into a single, dual mono, stereo track.

    Since there doesn't seem to be any consistency in how the audio is handled do you have any options for changing how the Cion records the audio? My personal advice is to pick one of the options that at least reads the audio like Audacity and export it to separate mono wav files or a stereo wave. At least that way it's guaranteed to be read in a consistent way across applications.

     EDIT: You're an Edius user aren't you? How does Edius handle it?

  • edited January 2016

    Edius, Resolve, and Scratch all import it fine. All are far as I can tell are loading each track separately, which is the correct behavior for a multi-mono audio file. 

    Multi-mono is a standard in pro audio; when you use a pro mixer/recorder like a 633, it records multiple mono tracks (I've used up to six on mine). I don't know whether or not I can change the record format on the Cion; I haven't needed to in the past, since multi-mono matches the way that I record audio when I use 2nd system sound, just with fewer channels.

    Yet another project I can't work with in HitFilm because of broken basic functionality...

  • Sorry but I have to disagree with this being basic functionality. The audio in this clip is not encoded as a multi channel stream like you get with a multi track audio file so at a fundamental level it is being handled differently and inconsistently across several packages ranging from free utilities to professional software. (just tried with a couple of DAW's, one choked and the other only recognized the first stream) This clip is encoded with two completely separate streams. The equivalent on a multi track recorder would be a separate file for each channel of audio or say a DVD with primary and secondary audio streams. The streams can be mixed into a single, 2 channel wave or exported as two separate waves 

    I've worked with a lot of different cameras over the years and this is the first time I've ever seen this kind of output from one. Going with dual mono has invariably meant one audio input is recorded on both channels of a 2 channel audio stream, not 2 completely separate streams. This behavior is much much more common which is why I asked if you could change things on the Cion. You don't lose any functionality in doing that and if the audio had been recorded that way in this clip it would be working just fine in pretty much everything including HitFilm.

  • The audio in that looks like typical audio in MXF files. MXF has each channel as a separate stream. With MXF many apps know this and commonly react accordingly as there is something of a standard for channel mapping. Hitfilm handles this MXF audio fine. Conversly Handbrake does not.

    In a MOV file, then what is one supposed to do. Without a channel mapping UI, I guess the most straightforward thing  would be to have multiple audio events. One for each channel. Hitfilm does not have this concept. Hitfilm is fundamentally single channel stereo. Hitfilm could special case two mono streams and fold that into stereo like it does for MXF but even that could be wrong since who knows what the two audio channels are all about in a MOV.

    Using an ffmpeg command like this.

    -c:v copy -filter_complex "[0:1] [0:2] amerge" -c:a pcm_s16le

    will merge the audio channels into stereo. The video is untouched and just remuxed. In the distant past i used this to merge audio to get Handbrake to accept my intermediate.

  • Aladdin4dAladdin4d Moderator
    edited January 2016

    It would be my guess that this works the same way every time under OS X but problems show up on Windows. QuickTime support for any kind of multi-channel audio is relatively recent in the grand scheme of things. 

    EDIT: Just thought of something that could be entirely wrong but I have a very vague memory that with MOV multi-channel audio the first 2 channels should always stored as a 2 channel stream for legacy compatibility. 

  • edited January 2016

    Every NLE except HitFilm so far handles this file as it is fine. So does Reaper.  I haven't looked into changing the audio recording format on the Cion because it works in everything... except as it turns out, HitFilm. That makes HitFilm the broken one, not everything else.

    I just thought it might be possible to edit these short interviews in HitFilm, since syncing wouldn't be an issues, so that I could take advantage of HitFilm's effects and titling along with editing all in one app.

  • Actually Reaper did NOT handle it correctly for me. It only read the first stream and so far no two NLE's handle it the same way although I don't have access to Premiere to test it against other results so it might match one. AVID only recognized the first stream on import and this is apparently a common problem as I came across several references to using QuickTime Pro to remap the streams to L and R in a single stream before AVID will import the audio correctly. Note this is for all MOV's with audio mapped like this regardless of the source. 

    So all of your software except HitFilm handles it in some form or another but it's "broken" for several applications other than HitFilm as well. 

  • edited August 2016


  • @Sarasota Yes there are two discrete mono streams (tracks) in the clip. As you already found out even when you can import it a lot of programs automatically combine the tracks making it seem like there's just one which could get really confusing and might cause other issues down the road. NormanPCN touched on this too "even that could be wrong since who knows what the two audio channels are all about in a MOV"

    For a long time QuickTime only supported up to two channels in a single stream. Multi-channel support was added with QuickTime 7 and as I learned today it can handle up 16 discrete channels that have to be mapped the same way you map channels in an MXF file. NormanPCN also mentioned this.

    What concerns me the most is even when an application can import the clip very few of them actually honor the discrete channels and instead combine them. What happens if I have a clip with 4 or 5 or 16 channels? Will it import, import just 2 channels or combine all of them?

  • edited January 2016

    I've tried it in quite a few NLEs, and only HitFilm has failed so far. I got it for the plugins though; I'm hoping that FXHome and/or Assimilate can get them working in Scratch, but they do work in Resolve. 

  • edited August 2016


  • I'm not a fan of QuickTime either, but my camera's internal record format is ProRes, so for now I'm stuck with it. Until I get my Scarlet, then it will be ProRes or RedCode. :)


  • edited August 2016


  • I checked the Cion manual... it doesn't seem that there's a way to change the record format... but everything else I have imports it fine, so I'll probably just edit this in Resolve and just use the Ignite plugins.

  • I've been fooling around with this because I have something coming up in about a month where I'm going to do a project interchange with FCP X which apparently does all audio the same way as this and I'm really worried about running into problems. Best as I can tell when there are two discrete tracks like the Cion produces they also should be mapped as Front Left and Front Right (side note a single mono track should be Front Center) otherwise the importing program either doesn't know what to do and the import fails or it can be imported but the application does whatever it wants like combine the streams. read only the first stream or make a stereo stream. Even Resolve combines the streams on import. 

    When I make an MOV with 2 discrete streams mapped as Front Left and Front Right everything I've tried including HitFilm imports the audio as a stereo track. Just for reference in case anybody wants the info I plan on using an FFMpeg batch file set up as a "Send To" item to extract any found audio streams to separate mono wavs.

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