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No audio after black title at head of program

#1
If I place a short black title as the first item in The Joiner it usually causes the resultant file to have no audio except a very brief burst of noise at the start. If I take that title out of the joiner and re-render the file it has normal audio. If I put another black title back in at the head the audio is kaput again. This behaviour is consistent with any affected file, which is most of them. These are DVB-T 720x576 16:9 mpeg2 TS files in VRD version 5.4.84.771. TS in > TS out. In my tests, this problem does not occur in VRD v4.21.10.681. I have samples and logs.
 
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#3
I should just mention that I have tried deselecting the "allow multiple audio streams" option on several occasions and it has never made a difference to this problem.
 
#4
I discovered that this nasty problem occurs when the fade in and fade out times of black titles are set to zero. VRD v4 and v5 exhibit the same behaviour. Not all my TS files are susceptible, but I have not been able to identify what might be the cause inside those that are. I have submitted a sample source file and examples from v4 and v5. Now we wait...:)
 
#5
I've been attempting to do some meaningful tests again to provide Danr with some evidence he can use but I was beaten by VRD's (mis)behaviour! I was changing one parameter at a time and re-rendering to see if the resultant file had audio. I was ultimately confounded when every combination had audio, especially when I retried the original setup that had previously given no audio!! Even after rebooting the machine I found that I could not make the problem recur with the same source material!

Conclusion: The Joiner must be involved because if I don't try to add a black title at the start of my edits, I simply don't suffer the "no audio" bug. Simple as that.

I notice in the forum that other users have "no audio" problems from time to time, so maybe the Joiner is involved? Don't know, but I hope the "no audio" problem's gone in v6, although I think Danr said somewhere that mpeg2 ts files may not be supported, so we may be stuck with a somewhat buggy v5 that has apparently inherited Joiner/Titler-related bug/s from v4. Sigh.

Some observations:
1. Using titles as a source of video black consistently and significantly slows down rendering - roughly 4 to 8 times as long is typical.
2. The rendering "time remaining" indication is often ridiculously high. Say for a 20 minute program that can render out an edit with three cuts in about 20 seconds just using "Save Video", the "time remaining" starts at a few minutes and gets it together for a realistic figure by about half-way. In the case of the same program with black titles at head and tail and thus employing the joiner by necessity, I've seen it display tens of hours at the start of what will be about a 2 minute render and still be way, way high at the 90% mark. Obviously it's only a rough indicator, but maybe that's pointing at some inherent problem in the titler and/or the joiner (and/or the encoder?).

Work-around result: I currently have the titler set for 0.4Sec/1.2Secs/0.4Sec (for PAL/25). I chose those numbers to give me 2 secs of black and to avoid making VRD struggle with fractional frames. I have not had a single "no audio" render - yet. Renders are still too slow though.
 

Danr

Administrator
Staff member
#6
Are you outputting MPEG2 or H.264? Are you really putting in a title or simply want some fade-in black?
 
#7
SD MPEG2 TS files in and out.

I'm not putting in a title, only using the titler (and therefore the joiner) for 2 secs of black at head and tail. I'd much prefer to be able to simply fade in and out, but we've already had that discussion some years back :(
 
#8
Another observation: When a file is causing the joiner/titler to struggle, the log file becomes huge. I uploaded such a one to your msgBoard a couple of weeks ago, was it any help? I should also mention that I sometimes have to "Adjust Audio", usually not much more than -50 to -60mS and always negative. Just mentioning it in case it is affecting the problem.
 
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Dan203

Senior Developer
Staff member
#9
What is the source audio? There are certain audio formats we can't duplicate, so the title is output without audio at all. That could be an issue.
 
#10
These are bog-standard mpeg2 ts files with mpeg audio version1, layer2, 256kb/s, 48Khz, etc. and if VRD couldn't handle them with the titler/joiner in tow, surely it wouldn't handle them without. I think we're going in circles now.
 

Dan203

Senior Developer
Staff member
#11
Yeah that's not the issue. Only reason I asked is because most of what we do in VideoReDo with audio is just pass it through. But when you add a title we have to generate silent audio frames to go along with the title. There are a couple of formats we can't do this for, like DTS and EAC3, I just wanted to make sure that wasn't what was happening here. Layer 2 audio should work fine, so that's not the issue. DanR is the expert when it comes to how exactly the titles are rendered in the video with smart edit, so I'll have to leave this up to him to figure out.
 
#12
Just a suggestion... I too sometimes want to add a few secs of black segment when my edited video starts abruptly and it often didn't work when VRD joined the video.

I finally cut a 30 sec segment from a video that started with the 5-10 secs of black/no volume frames I wanted - whatever else came after didn't matter as I wouldn't be using it.
Then I recoded that segment in different resolutions (1080, 720, SD) and audio types (AC3, AAC, 2ch, 6ch)

Now, when I need some black padding, I load the "Black" file with resolution and audio that match into VRD, mark out a length of black I want for padding and add that segment to the Joiner queue with the rest of the segments from the main video I'm working on. I have had no further problems with joining opening black to programs.

My theory is VRD Joiner can't properly sync a file as short as 5-10 sec, especially if the short segment needs recoding to match the larger video.
Creating 30 sec files and cutting from the matching type allows VRD enough info to do a proper sync.

This may be limited to the specific raw files I create with my Hauppauge HD-PVR, but worth a try on your files.
 
#13
Good suggestion, but I have done exactly that over the years with varying success. I suspect that when the I, P, B sequence differs a certain way, it throws VRD. Most times it worked for me, but when it didn't I resorted to the "silent black titles" method. That worked quite well for a long time and was less messy than having a stack of black clips standing by. When adding titles, you might assume that VRD would be constructing a short sequence to match the body of video, but I don't think that is happening, thus we have 'issues'.

I have to say that VRD is really frustrating in this area. Simply being able to fade in and out to/from black + silence would be a great feature and avoid the problems mentioned above, but apparently it's too hard for the VRD dev's or they just don't know how to approach it. Any other video editing s/w has fades and effects these days - even poor old Womble had it, but sadly it didn't keep up with new codecs and OS's. Even back in the day when we were editing analogue VHS or Beta there was plenty of equipment that offered video and audio fades and video wipes, e.g. the VideoTech Designs range, but apparently we don't need that old-fangled effect stuff now - although I, and I think others here, would seriously beg to differ.
 
#14
Well, it's been a long time since I started this thread and there's been no (documented) progress from the Dev's. I have an update though... Since I set the title parameters to 0.4 sec /2.2 secs /0.4 sec I have not had a single failure. Unfortunately though, VRD is 'smart' rendering mpeg2 ts files at about 25% of the speed it was in the past, and avc/h.264 ts files at about 10% speed. I've totally uninstalled and reinstalled with no change in this pathetically poor performance. There's no bottlenecks in my USB external hard disks and I've even tried a Samsung external SSD with only minor improvement. I can copy files at lightning speed outside VRD so it has some disc access problem/s in my opinion. The internal help system has not been kept up to date (unforgivable), so trying to change anything in an informed manner is impossibly frustrating. GRRRR!
 
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#15
I just noticed another strange little issue when using a black title at the end of clips: Right at the end of the video the last few frames immediately preceeding the 2 second black title are each shown for an extended time, I'm guessing 100mS instead of 20mS. The effect is visible when there is a fade out or some other motion. If I check the job in VRD it plays normally, and checking frame by frame reveals nothing odd, but when played in PotPlayer or VLC the problem occurs. Makes me think that VRD has tacked something non-standard onto the end of the file. If that is so, I'd expect that the black title at the head is also iffy and causing the slow rendering problem perhaps.
 

Dan203

Senior Developer
Staff member
#16
Well, it's been a long time since I started this thread and there's been no (documented) progress from VRD. I have an update though... Since I set the title fade in and out to zero I have not had a single failure. Unfortunately though, VRD is 'smart' rendering mpeg2 ts files at about 25% of the speed it was in the past, and avc/h.264 ts files at about 10% speed. I've totally uninstalled and reinstalled with no change in this pathetically poor performance. There's no bottlenecks in my USB external hard disks and I've even tried a Samsung external SSD with only minor improvement. I can copy files at lightning speed outside VRD so it has some disc access problem/s in my opinion. The internal help system has not been kept up to date (unforgivable), so trying to change anything in an informed manner is impossibly frustrating. GRRRR!
This is not typical. The most likely cause of this is your antivirus or antimalware software. Software with realtime scanning can cause slowdowns like this because it's attempting to scan the output file at the same time VideoReDo is trying to write it. This can be especially noticeable on an external drive as they don't have the same access speeds as internal drives. (even USB 3) Try disabling the AV software and see if that helps at all. Also, just as a test, try outputting without any titles, just cuts, and see if that makes any difference on the speed. Wondering if the title is contributing to the issue at all

I just noticed another strange little issue when using a black title at the end of clips: Right at the end of the video the last few frames immediately preceeding the 2 second black title are each shown for an extended time, I'm guessing 100mS instead of 20mS. The effect is visible when there is a fade out or some other motion. If I check the job in VRD it plays normally, and checking frame by frame reveals nothing odd, but when played in PotPlayer or VLC the problem occurs. Makes me think that VRD has tacked something non-standard onto the end of the file. If that is so, I'd expect that the black title at the head is also iffy and causing the slow rendering problem perhaps.
This is how titles work. They take the first or last frame and fade it to/from black. They're not motion faded as that would affect the timecodes in the output video and one of the main features of VideoReDo is that we try to retain the original timecodes throughout processing so that we can maintain, or adjust, sync consistently and detect errors in the source that we can fix. It's most noticeable on the fade out because the video appears to pause for a split second when you're actually viewing frames that have a slight tint applied to them, but it's imperceptible.
 
#17
This is not typical. The most likely cause of this is your antivirus or antimalware software. Software with realtime scanning can cause slowdowns like this because it's attempting to scan the output file at the same time VideoReDo is trying to write it. This can be especially noticeable on an external drive as they don't have the same access speeds as internal drives. (even USB 3) Try disabling the AV software and see if that helps at all. Also, just as a test, try outputting without any titles, just cuts, and see if that makes any difference on the speed. Wondering if the title is contributing to the issue at all
I only use Windows Defender within Windows and have put exceptions in it so as not to interfere with VRD's processes. I use other AV on an external drive outside Windows to check for infections. I have also disabled realtime scanning altogether to check if there is still some issue, but it makes no discernable difference. I used to get around 4,500 FPS consistently to my desktop USB3.0 hdd from USB3.0 portable 2.5" hdd, sadly not in VRD now :( Copying files from portable to desktop hdd is still super fast without exceptions in Defender and USB Device Tree Viewer v3.2.1 shows my USB drives are "connected at SuperSpeed or higher". Outputting from VRD without 'extras' is a tad faster, but not as fast as previously. I realise Windows is the trickiest beast, but other video s/w I use is as fast as it ever was. I know that sort of claim is not proof of anything and is annoying to support people, but I have nothing else to refer to.

This is how titles work. They take the first or last frame and fade it to/from black. They're not motion faded as that would affect the timecodes in the output video and one of the main features of VideoReDo is that we try to retain the original timecodes throughout processing so that we can maintain, or adjust, sync consistently and detect errors in the source that we can fix. It's most noticeable on the fade out because the video appears to pause for a split second when you're actually viewing frames that have a slight tint applied to them, but it's imperceptible.
AFAIK VRD's titles are based either on bitmaps (which the titler can fade up/down) or the titler just generates some black itself if there's no bitmap to work on. There's no fading of video or we could do video fades (I wish, I wish). What I'm saying is that a finished mpeg2 ts file with black title at the end played in PotPlayer or VLC exhibits a 'freezing' of the last few frames of VIDEO, prior to the black title segment that VRD has added. So by my logic, VRD has put some sort of discontinuity in that 3sec black segment which is causing that effect. Anyway, whatever, I guess it's 'too hard'.

This thread is complex and hard to follow, but I'm actually having a few actual problems every day that are making VRD a trial to use. I've thrown all my video experience and Windows knowledge at it and have come up with work-arounds, but it shouldn't be necessary when you guys are so good at what you do. I suppose that v5 is just about to go into retirement, and that your major effort is now towards releasing a less buggy v6. A lot of software (not just video-related) I have used over the years has focused on adding more features and less old bug fixing as the version count goes up. I sincerely hope that v6 is not like that and that it will be a major improvement on v5. You might think "why doesn't this guy just use Vegas or whatever". Well, I do for some work, but it and the others generally don't have the speedy editing flow or specialised functions that VRD has. VRD seems to be bogging down, so it would be good if your dev's could look at making it less affected by windows issues or at least make users aware of such issues during use so they might fix them before they compound. That would be an interesting feature indeed. I wish you the best of British luck with v6. Over and out.

Oh, and Merry Christmas to all at VRD.
 

Dan203

Senior Developer
Staff member
#18
Sorry might be mixing up v6 features in there with the fading. :)

Not sure what would cause the pause then. Perhaps the player/decoder is having trouble switching to the original video once the title is done. We attempt to encode the title as close to the original video as possible, but sometimes we can't match exactly and some decoders/players handle the switch in encoding parms better than others.

As for the longer output... no idea. If it's not AV then I almost have to blame the drives. Either input or output. When doing a smart render VideoReDo is almost entirely drive bound. It only processes a few frames around each edit point, the rest are basically just copied and require very little CPU. (we do demux and remux, so some CPU is require compared to simple file copy though) If you uninstalled and didn't restore settings then I can't think of anything in VideoReDo that would cause this. The easiest wayto test if this is a corruption in Windows or the hardware is to create another profile. Install VideoReDo there and see how it performs. If it is fast than there is something wrong with your Windows install. (have seen this a few times) If it's still slow than it's hardware.
 
#19
Looking forward to v6 and don't want to distract your efforts at this late stage of v5.

I feel you are correct regarding players and little mismatches.

Could there be issues in VRD's or Window's RAM management that causes slowdowns? I've noticed when watching the progress bar during a smart render in the past that the bar advanced quickly in a few large steps, but now the progress is slower and in many more short steps. BTW there's always plenty of free RAM available. Is the red lightning bolt animation indicative of any process?

Well, woops, I did restore my settings after reinstalling! Thought I was being clever :rolleyes: . I'll create a new profile asap and I'll let you know what transpires.
 
#20
New profile made. Installed VRD then changed navigation & titling options, but see no noticeable difference. I can't reconcile this result with being able to copy files to/from USB3 drives at lightning speed, or how incredibly fast MKVtoolnixGui is at muxing and saving. I'm not prepared to reinstall Windows as a test, so will wait in hope for v6 to be speedy. Thanks Danr and Dan203 for your help.
 
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