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Old May 16th, 2014, 02:04 PM   #1
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MXF-->MP3 Conversion BOTH Audio Channels?

Hi - I'm trying to convert MXF files to MP3 files so I can send them off to a transcriber. The problem is all the conversion software apps I've tried will not convert both channels of audio. If i do (0x3) i get the left channel, if i do (0x4) i get the right channel. Anything else the sound washes out. What is the deal?
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Old May 17th, 2014, 12:21 AM   #2
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Re: MXF-->MP3 Conversion BOTH Audio Channels?

What do you mean by "washes out"? (I'm thinking tie-dyed shirts, but I'm probably wrong.)

And in the "washed out" situation, what is the resulting file format(s)? MP3 stereo? MP3 mono? Other?
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Old May 17th, 2014, 05:27 AM   #3
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Re: MXF-->MP3 Conversion BOTH Audio Channels?

By wash out I mean the audio gets fainter and fainter to the point that u can't hear it. 0x5 0x6 0x7 etc the audio is unlistenable. MP3 stereo or mono yields same results.
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Old May 17th, 2014, 10:49 AM   #4
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Re: MXF-->MP3 Conversion BOTH Audio Channels?

What conversion apps and/or host program are you using?
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Old May 17th, 2014, 11:26 AM   #5
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Re: MXF-->MP3 Conversion BOTH Audio Channels?

I would bet that your two audio channels are OUT OF PHASE and when you try to combine them, they cancel each other out, which exactly explains the symptoms you are presenting.

OTOH it is not clear why your transcription service is so picky about having the audio on BOTH channels?
Maybe you need a transcription service more eager for your business.
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Old May 19th, 2014, 08:26 AM   #6
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Re: MXF-->MP3 Conversion BOTH Audio Channels?

so far i've used Aiseesoft MXF Converter For Mac, MXF Converter Ultimate, and cloud convert, and the exact same thing happens on all. you can only convert 1 channel of audio.

I need both channels because there are 2 people individually miked and its fly on the wall and the transcripts come back with a lot of [00:00:14 inaudible]

is it really that difficult to convert both channels? we are looking to come up with a quick, easy and replicable process converting mxf files to audio files for transcription using both audio channels. at the least, shouldn't it be easy to mix the 2 channels in the conversion?
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Old May 19th, 2014, 10:29 AM   #7
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Re: MXF-->MP3 Conversion BOTH Audio Channels?

If they open properly in your NLE, render the audio to WAVE audio files.
Otherwise have you tried a muxer/ de-muxer utility.
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Old May 19th, 2014, 10:20 PM   #8
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Re: MXF-->MP3 Conversion BOTH Audio Channels?

My hunch coincides with Mr. Crowley's, namely the two channels are out of phase. That's why I asked you to define "washes out."

When you're in this "washed out" situation, are you playing a stereo file or a mono file? In other words, if you look at it on VU meters, do you see audio from one mic/channel on one meter, and audio from the other mic/channel on the other meter? Or do you see exactly the same thing on both meters?

Also, when you're in this "washed out" situation, are you playing back both channels mixed to a single speaker, or are you playing back with a normal stereo situation (2 channels of amplification, 2 speakers)?

Finally, please briefly describe the scenario when the original file was recorded. Two people at a table? Seated 3 feet apart? Each with a separate mic? Or exactly what was going on when the original recording was made? What is supposed to be on the two channels?
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Old May 19th, 2014, 11:57 PM   #9
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Re: MXF-->MP3 Conversion BOTH Audio Channels?

Mr. Crowley and Mr. Miller have probably put their finger on the problem. Simple solution is to invert one channel. If you can't do that in your editing program, export the audio to a separate file and open in an audio program (Audacity is free and excellent) and invert one or the other channel.. Play and see what happens. At least no harm will occur. If it works, save the file from the audio program and import it to your nle, replacing the original tracks.
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Old May 20th, 2014, 11:53 AM   #10
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Re: MXF-->MP3 Conversion BOTH Audio Channels?

Thanks for the thoughts I am grateful.

I do not have an NLE. I'm trying to come up with a simple sustainable workflow for field producers to convert and upload mxf files on laptops at the end of each day for transcription.

we mic 2 people separately and record them in an office type situation going about their daily business. It would be great to have both channels of audio since you can hear each person much better on their dedicated channel.

When I convert the files, im given the options of pcm_s24le 1 channels 0x3, 0x4, 0x5, 0x6, 0x7, 0x8, 0x9, and 0xa.

if i choose 0x3 it is clearly the left channel, if i choose 0x4 it is clearly the right channel. 0x5 i said is washed out BUT what it really is is the camera microphone which sounds like crap. 0x6 is worse and the rest go silent.

Again, the audio results are the same whether I choose stereo or mono.

I also now see that under properties it says 1 channel and it wont let me change that so clearly it will only convert 1 channel of audio even though there are 2 channels.

If there are no programs that will convert both channels, is there any software that will mix both channels while converting from mxf to mp3?

I will try audacity i've heard that it is great thats what my audio tech suggested actually.
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Old May 20th, 2014, 09:11 PM   #11
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Re: MXF-->MP3 Conversion BOTH Audio Channels?

Peter,

What type of audio/video recording devices are you using?

It seems like whatever they are, they're generating a LOT of tracks you don't need.

Which *could* be a matter of how they're setup.
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Old May 20th, 2014, 11:38 PM   #12
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Re: MXF-->MP3 Conversion BOTH Audio Channels?

.MXF can have 8 audio tracks, probably leading to some confusion.

FWIW, Audacity can directly import audio from .mxf files (import>audio>{filename}, or at least xdcam files, the only type I have handy. Try opening your files to at least see what you have. You can delete tracks, invert tracks, mix down to stereo, export as .wav, MP3 or many other formats. Some of these features might bear on your situation. And it's free.

Last edited by Battle Vaughan; May 21st, 2014 at 12:16 AM.
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Old May 21st, 2014, 05:14 AM   #13
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Re: MXF-->MP3 Conversion BOTH Audio Channels?

Thanks I will try audacity today. we are shooting on sony pmw-200's.
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Old May 22nd, 2014, 08:37 AM   #14
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Re: MXF-->MP3 Conversion BOTH Audio Channels?

Just wanted to post that Audacity worked! It lets me highlight 0x3 and 0x4 at the same time and converts both channels. All the other software programs that I paid $$$ for will only let you do 0x3 or 0x4 separately -- not both at the same. Thanks for all the help!
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Old May 22nd, 2014, 09:23 AM   #15
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Re: MXF-->MP3 Conversion BOTH Audio Channels?

Happy to hear that it worked!
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