Old 05-17-2020, 02:53 AM   #1
Narayan
Human being with feelings
 
Narayan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Scotland
Posts: 262
Default MP3 quality issues

I'm having an issue with mp3 encoding in an older version of Reaper. It just isn't coping with my outro, it spits out pops and other artefacts at that point every time its rendered/compressed. It isn't anything to do with dB levels as it's well within range.

I am use a 64 bit encoding version of Lame, and I don't want to upgrade Reaper at this point. Unfortunately when I go to look for other versions of Lame, it seems like they have changed the whole folder even in legacy versions so that it is not as simple as dragging and dropping a .dll file. Help/guidance appreciated.

Thanks
Narayan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2020, 05:17 AM   #2
Coachz
Human being with feelings
 
Coachz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Charleston, SC USA
Posts: 8,455
Default

If the track has fx on it, try freezing it before render.
Coachz is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2020, 01:00 PM   #3
clepsydrae
Human being with feelings
 
clepsydrae's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 2,759
Default

You're saying that if you render to WAV the issues are not there?

Not sure why you don't want to upgrade reaper, but note: if you upgrade to latest reaper you don't need to worry about lame at all, it's built in.

I'd suggest downloading the latest reaper just for expermient's sake, even if you don't want to use it; just do a portable install (see my sig for guidance) so as not to mess with your regular install, and try the render from there to see if it makes a difference.
clepsydrae is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-21-2020, 05:49 AM   #4
Narayan
Human being with feelings
 
Narayan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Scotland
Posts: 262
Default

Thanks for the responses!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coachz View Post
If the track has fx on it, try freezing it before render.
Do you mean that you think the issue may be processing demands? (The section of the song that is coming out badly only has three tracks running. At other points there is 6. I think it is something about the sound (a Glitch audio render to wav, which lame is struggling to compress). It's all midi so I'm running quite a lot of FX in general.


Quote:
Originally Posted by clepsydrae View Post
You're saying that if you render to WAV the issues are not there?

Not sure why you don't want to upgrade reaper, but note: if you upgrade to latest reaper you don't need to worry about lame at all, it's built in.

I'd suggest downloading the latest reaper just for expermient's sake, even if you don't want to use it; just do a portable install (see my sig for guidance) so as not to mess with your regular install, and try the render from there to see if it makes a difference.
Yeah that's right, I don't have the same problem with Wav. The wav isn't great and I've got separate issues, but it's much better!

Thanks for the suggestion

I tried the portable install. When I opened the project file it loaded then gave me a message saying:



'There were 1 items (sic) in the project that were saved by extensions. If you save this project without those extensions installed, you may lose those extensions' data.

The following effects were in the project file and are not available. Reaper will keep their configurations, but things may not sound as desired. '

There follows a list of about 50 effects under their respective channels. As result when I play back in portable 6.10 there is no sound.'



Is this error on my part? When I first started up I saw it scan through a long list of Vsts (including ones I have added) so I know it has identified their location.

Perhaps I am better just rendering from Wav to mp3? Maybe using third party software?

Last edited by Narayan; 05-21-2020 at 05:56 AM.
Narayan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-21-2020, 06:04 AM   #5
Coachz
Human being with feelings
 
Coachz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Charleston, SC USA
Posts: 8,455
Default

Some plug-ins don't always behave the way I expect them to during render so as a last resort I will just freeze the track beforehand so it's nothing more than a WAV file at the time of render
Coachz is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-21-2020, 10:45 AM   #6
clepsydrae
Human being with feelings
 
clepsydrae's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 2,759
Default

Yeah this is likely a plugin and/or CPU thing, I'd guess.

In your normal install, try rendering but on the render dialog where it says "Full speed offline" change it to "Online render" and see if that changes anything. You can try the other options as well.

Re: the portable install: you will have to configure the portable install to point to your VSTs so it can find them. You might also install whatever extensions have saved data in the project too (SWS? some other plugin?). Don't save the project from the portable install. (If, like me, you reflexively hit ctrl-s all the time, start by "save as" to make a duplicate of the project under a different name, to avoid accidentally overwriting it.)
clepsydrae is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2020, 07:41 AM   #7
Narayan
Human being with feelings
 
Narayan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Scotland
Posts: 262
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coachz View Post
Some plug-ins don't always behave the way I expect them to during render so as a last resort I will just freeze the track beforehand so it's nothing more than a WAV file at the time of render
I gave it a try. I rendered the track to wav so it had no fx and just muted the original. Same issue.
I tried completely disarming the fx on the other tracks running at the same time as the Glitch track (effectively soloing it) and unfortunately it still happened.

When watching the CPU, on a full speed render of the original track it was mostly in the 80s and 90s, but did not go above 97%. Watching it on the outro section it was between 85 and 95%.


Quote:
Originally Posted by clepsydrae View Post
Yeah this is likely a plugin and/or CPU thing, I'd guess.

In your normal install, try rendering but on the render dialog where it says "Full speed offline" change it to "Online render" and see if that changes anything. You can try the other options as well.

Re: the portable install: you will have to configure the portable install to point to your VSTs so it can find them. You might also install whatever extensions have saved data in the project too (SWS? some other plugin?). Don't save the project from the portable install. (If, like me, you reflexively hit ctrl-s all the time, start by "save as" to make a duplicate of the project under a different name, to avoid accidentally overwriting it.)
I tried every type I could see with the 44100hz setting:

1X Offline
Online Render (playback sounded fine, mp3 didn't)
Offline Render(Idle)
1X Offline Render (Idle)



All had the same issue. It isn't even the whole part of the Glitch outro, it's just the bits which almost sound like an acid section.


On the second thing, I made sure Reaper portable was referred to all my plugin folders. When it scanned them it kept popping up saying it couldn't create a txt file. I believe it is a 'Midi.Bank.Cache.txt' file as it happened again when I tried to reload. When the project opens it says:
'There were 1 items in the project that were saved by extensions. If you save this project without those extensions installed, you may lose those extensions' data.
The following effects were in the project file and are not available..........


Again a long list follows. They have been pointed to as mentioned.


Thanks for ideas.
Narayan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-22-2020, 10:13 AM   #8
clepsydrae
Human being with feelings
 
clepsydrae's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 2,759
Default

Try this: in your normal install, go to Prefs -> General -> Export Configuration, select every checkbox on the left side, and export to a .zip file somewhere on the computer. Quit reaper.

Start the portable install, go to prefs -> General -> Import configuration, select the .zip file, and import all the configs. Allow reaper to quit and restart.

Now you should have your vsts properly installed in the portable install, along with whatever extension it's complaining about. Then test render again via this portable install.

Quote:
[B]'There were 1 items in the project that were saved by extensions. If you save this project without those extensions installed, you may lose those extensions' data.
What extensions are you using? SWS? Reapack? Any other extensions?

Quote:
When it scanned them it kept popping up saying it couldn't create a txt file. I believe it is a 'Midi.Bank.Cache.txt' file as it happened again when I tried to reload.
This sounds like a plugin that is not operating properly. Hopefully the config export/import described above will get around whatever this is.
clepsydrae is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-23-2020, 02:37 AM   #9
Narayan
Human being with feelings
 
Narayan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Scotland
Posts: 262
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by clepsydrae View Post
Try this: in your normal install, go to Prefs -> General -> Export Configuration, select every checkbox on the left side, and export to a .zip file somewhere on the computer. Quit reaper.

Start the portable install, go to prefs -> General -> Import configuration, select the .zip file, and import all the configs. Allow reaper to quit and restart.

Now you should have your vsts properly installed in the portable install, along with whatever extension it's complaining about. Then test render again via this portable install.



What extensions are you using? SWS? Reapack? Any other extensions?



This sounds like a plugin that is not operating properly. Hopefully the config export/import described above will get around whatever this is.
Thanks for the suggestion. I tried it, and I can hear much more of the tracks now, but still with many missing. It still came up with the extension warning and the list of unavailable "effects" (which includes actual effects but also vst instruments).

I didn't really remember installing an extension but when I clicked on the menu I appear to have installed the 'SWS/S&M Extension, Version 2.9.7 (2017)', as there is an 'About' option for it at the top

One of the tracks that actually came through ok was the key part of the outro in question.

Just for test sake, I rendered it to 320 mp3 using the Portable 6.10. Not only did it not have the artefacts, but it sounds Better in general (more accurate eq balance) than both the mp3 generated in old Reaper and the Wav! I made sure to disable the track specific effects not working in the old version of Reaper and re-render for a valid comparison.

Is there a way to route the playback sound of old Reaper to new Reaper (or another rendering engine) and render it that way?
Or how possible would it be to put the new rendering engine in my version.....(thinking idealistically)?

Last edited by Narayan; 05-23-2020 at 02:49 AM.
Narayan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-23-2020, 08:38 AM   #10
Narayan
Human being with feelings
 
Narayan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Scotland
Posts: 262
Default

Also tried removing the old 64 bit lame encoder and downloading the latest Lame version using the link on this guide:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QLEd9WUgu3s

But after the dll was extracted I got a message saying 'lame_enc.dll cannot be extracted......Not a valid PE file'.
Narayan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-23-2020, 08:47 AM   #11
Coachz
Human being with feelings
 
Coachz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Charleston, SC USA
Posts: 8,455
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Narayan View Post
Also tried removing the old 64 bit lame encoder and downloading the latest Lame version using the link on this guide:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QLEd9WUgu3s

But after the dll was extracted I got a message saying 'lame_enc.dll cannot be extracted......Not a valid PE file'.

Here is the lame dll I used for years with great success. Click the dl button top right.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1ut...w3UBO1KlPbG4aL
Coachz is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-23-2020, 11:03 AM   #12
clepsydrae
Human being with feelings
 
clepsydrae's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 2,759
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Narayan View Post
Thanks for the suggestion. I tried it, and I can hear much more of the tracks now, but still with many missing. It still came up with the extension warning and the list of unavailable "effects" (which includes actual effects but also vst instruments).
Ah, my mistake. I assumed that a prefs export would include the VST paths, but apparently it does not (which is weird to me, but it's a separate issue.)

In your regular install, go to prefs -> Plugins -> VST and select/copy all of the text in the "VST plug-in paths" field. (Paste it in to a text editor or something, if helpful.) Close that reaper, open the portable install reaper, go to the same place, and paste it in to the paths field there. Then click "Clear cache/re-scan". Then quit reaper, re-open, open the project, and try again.

You can probably ignore the extension warning for the purposes of this test.

Quote:
Is there a way to route the playback sound of old Reaper to new Reaper (or another rendering engine) and render it that way?
Or how possible would it be to put the new rendering engine in my version.....(thinking idealistically)?
I would forget both those approaches. Is there a reason you don't want to upgrade reaper? There are probably 1000 bug fixes since then and now, plus many new features. Is it the $?
clepsydrae is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-23-2020, 11:30 AM   #13
Coachz
Human being with feelings
 
Coachz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Charleston, SC USA
Posts: 8,455
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by clepsydrae View Post
I would forget both those approaches. Is there a reason you don't want to upgrade reaper? There are probably 1000 bug fixes since then and now, plus many new features. Is it the $?
I agree. For me I stay on the latest version always. Right now I'm on reaper611rc1_x64-install and while I still use a modded version 4 theme, each new mouse modifier and nuanced improvement like dual export make it worth adapting. Adaption is required usually on some level though.
Coachz is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-23-2020, 12:43 PM   #14
clepsydrae
Human being with feelings
 
clepsydrae's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 2,759
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by clepsydrae View Post
Ah, my mistake. I assumed that a prefs export would include the VST paths, but apparently it does not (which is weird to me, but it's a separate issue.)
No, my mistake -- I retract my retraction. The VST path should be getting exported/imported. Did you make sure to check all the boxes on the export and the import? Try that again. There's no reason one install should see plugins that the other install doesn't see, AFAIK.
clepsydrae is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2020, 08:04 AM   #15
Narayan
Human being with feelings
 
Narayan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Scotland
Posts: 262
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coachz View Post
Here is the lame dll I used for years with great success. Click the dl button top right.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1ut...w3UBO1KlPbG4aL
Thanks! Will look at giving this a try soon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by clepsydrae View Post
Ah, my mistake. I assumed that a prefs export would include the VST paths, but apparently it does not (which is weird to me, but it's a separate issue.)

In your regular install, go to prefs -> Plugins -> VST and select/copy all of the text in the "VST plug-in paths" field. (Paste it in to a text editor or something, if helpful.) Close that reaper, open the portable install reaper, go to the same place, and paste it in to the paths field there. Then click "Clear cache/re-scan". Then quit reaper, re-open, open the project, and try again.

You can probably ignore the extension warning for the purposes of this test.



I would forget both those approaches. Is there a reason you don't want to upgrade reaper? There are probably 1000 bug fixes since then and now, plus many new features. Is it the $?
Thinking about your focused assistance with the plug ins, I decided to search out the file 6.10 is looking for and add a parent folder in the directory to the vst scan list. This wiped out 90% of the unfound effects (Hooray!). I then put the specific file where 6.10 was looking for it.... And it sort of worked!

I had a new error popping up when I closed which said 'File couldn't be created to.... (directory connected with the same VST but a new file to do with 'midiassign')'. When I ran 6.10 as an administrator, it stopped this! Satisfying! Thanks for your persistence, which is greater than mine!!!

No idea why 6.10 would be looking for txt files in locations which are not the original ones, but I guess it would be to do with the programming of the VST.

Now the list of unfound effects is only 9 versions of the same effect on different tracks (JS: Filter/lowpass). I tried searching for 'Lowpass' and then pointing Reaper to it, but that hasn't worked unfortunately?

The main reason why I wasn't keen on upgrading was because I was worried about an unsolvable issue with Vst instruments. I don't know whether you are a recording musician or working more with electronic, but it felt like potential incompatibility was a major barrier.

The lesser reason was that I like the older aesthetics. Is it possible to import them (and my custom keyboard shortcuts) into the portable version?

Thanks again!!
Narayan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2020, 10:21 AM   #16
clepsydrae
Human being with feelings
 
clepsydrae's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 2,759
Default

Yeah, there seems to be something strange going on with your install... have you actually done the prefs export/impot? It should have made the VST path strings in both installations identical. You can compare them by hand to confirm that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Narayan View Post
I had a new error popping up when I closed which said 'File couldn't be created to.... (directory connected with the same VST but a new file to do with 'midiassign')'. When I ran 6.10 as an administrator, it stopped this! Satisfying! Thanks for your persistence, which is greater than mine!!!
I'm just guessing, but that sounds like a plugin issue to me, as opposed to reaper, but it might be. At any rate, you shouldn't have to run as administrator, but stranger things have happened, and maybe there are other issues afoot.

Quote:
Now the list of unfound effects is only 9 versions of the same effect on different tracks (JS: Filter/lowpass). I tried searching for 'Lowpass' and then pointing Reaper to it, but that hasn't worked unfortunately?
Hmmm. Possible that they retired an old JS from reaper's included library, but I'd be surprised. It's maybe more likely that you installed some custom JSFX in your regular reaper and you'll need to copy it in to your portable install.

In your regular install, open the FX chain containing the JS: Filter/lowpass, select an instance of it, and on the plugin window click the "Edit" button. In the window that pops up, look at the very top: it should have the full path to that file. Then you can see if the analogous file exists in your portable install.

Quote:
The main reason why I wasn't keen on upgrading was because I was worried about an unsolvable issue with Vst instruments. I don't know whether you are a recording musician or working more with electronic, but it felt like potential incompatibility was a major barrier.
I agree that it's wise, in general, to be conservative with upgrades, especially in a commercial context, but many here will tell you that reaper is much better than most on this score. I've been using it 9 or 10 years and have never had an issue like that, and many using it much longer will say the same. And you can just do a portable install and test as much as you want.

A new install of reaper doesn't affect your installed VSTs at all, so as long as those are up and running in your old version, it would be very unusual for them to suddenly stop working in a new version of reaper. Not saying it can't happen, and you should test with a portable install if concerned, but it's not a reason to not upgrade, IMO.

Quote:
The lesser reason was that I like the older aesthetics. Is it possible to import them (and my custom keyboard shortcuts) into the portable version?
The preferences export/import I detailed previously and which you should have already tried at least a couple times :-) should handle the shortcuts. In terms of the themes, I am not an expert, but you can go to Options -> Themes -> choose your old theme... see if that satisfies. I like the newer theme, personally, with the exception that you have to tweak the theme adjuster (Options->Themes->Theme Adjuster) to make the pan knobs show up in the arrange view.
clepsydrae is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-29-2020, 04:55 AM   #17
Narayan
Human being with feelings
 
Narayan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Scotland
Posts: 262
Default

Yeah I tried the pref/config import a couple of times, just ticking everything. But when it says it is going to restart, it shuts down but doesn't restart. I am guessing that is part of why it's not working....

I tried manually selecting or loading the theme. Unfortunately my version isn't one of the three options there. The 'Theme Adjuster' is greyed out. I'm guessing this has something to do with this Reaper being a portable version too.


The edit window didn't give the location of the effect file, but following your idea I was able to search and find the respective JS folders before copying and pasting. They indeed appeared to have removed that low pass. The warning is now gone and they are working. Thanks.

Thanks also for the advice regarding upgrading. The fact that we have been able to get almost all of this working has definitely helped bring me round to the idea a bit more!
Narayan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-29-2020, 05:24 AM   #18
Bambony
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Posts: 21
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Narayan View Post
I'm having an issue with mp3 encoding in an older version of Reaper. It just isn't coping with my outro, it spits out pops and other artefacts at that point every time its rendered/compressed. It isn't anything to do with dB levels as it's well within range.

I am use a 64 bit encoding version of Lame, and I don't want to upgrade Reaper at this point. Unfortunately when I go to look for other versions of Lame, it seems like they have changed the whole folder even in legacy versions so that it is not as simple as dragging and dropping a .dll file. Help/guidance appreciated.

Thanks
Try rendering a wav at the project sample rate then reimporting into a fresh project and create the mp3 file there. I have tons of issues with rendering and freezing in Reaper.

Tony
Bambony is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-29-2020, 09:09 AM   #19
clepsydrae
Human being with feelings
 
clepsydrae's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 2,759
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Narayan View Post
Yeah I tried the pref/config import a couple of times, just ticking everything. But when it says it is going to restart, it shuts down but doesn't restart. I am guessing that is part of why it's not working....
Yeah that's weird. I have no theory about the lack of restart. Honestly it's sounding like your OS/install/system is overall a little wonky.

Quote:
I tried manually selecting or loading the theme. Unfortunately my version isn't one of the three options there. The 'Theme Adjuster' is greyed out. I'm guessing this has something to do with this Reaper being a portable version too.
If you're using a custom theme then yeah, it may not be available for recent reaper. The theme adjuster works in portable installs, but not if you're using a custom theme, AFAIK.

Quote:
The edit window didn't give the location of the effect file,
Are you... sure about that? Maybe I'm missing something, but here for example is what a screenshot looks like (on windows and linux at least)... the file path is in the red bar:



...I know you solved the issue, I'm just following up because of the long list of oddities with your install and want to make sure we're on the same page.

For example, if you did the pref export/import, your VST paths should be identical in the portable vs. original install, yet you had to manually add a path, and that doesn't make sense.
clepsydrae is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-01-2020, 09:09 AM   #20
Narayan
Human being with feelings
 
Narayan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Scotland
Posts: 262
Default

Thanks for the responses.

So if it was a full install then customization is likely to be more straightforward?

Haha. No, not sure. I was clicking on the edit tab instead of the edit button. :S

Really not sure about why the portable doesn't restart either!

Thanks for all the help.
Narayan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-01-2020, 10:55 AM   #21
clepsydrae
Human being with feelings
 
clepsydrae's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 2,759
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Narayan View Post
So if it was a full install then customization is likely to be more straightforward?
Hmmm, not sure what you mean... regular and portable installs are both "full" in every sense. If you use a default theme, then theme customization is more straightforward, regardless of the type of install. The install type doesn't make a difference to customizability, it just makes it easier to test things because you can always do an additional portable install and try stuff out before doing it in your main install.
clepsydrae is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2020, 03:41 AM   #22
Narayan
Human being with feelings
 
Narayan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Scotland
Posts: 262
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by clepsydrae View Post
Hmmm, not sure what you mean... regular and portable installs are both "full" in every sense. If you use a default theme, then theme customization is more straightforward, regardless of the type of install. The install type doesn't make a difference to customizability, it just makes it easier to test things because you can always do an additional portable install and try stuff out before doing it in your main install.
I just thought that the issues with importing settings may not apply on a normal install vs portable.

I decided to follow your advice after how much progress we made and try upgrading/purchasing to the new version (now 6.11). I had some problems installing where it was saying it couldn't open Reaper.exe (I was not running Reaper at the time); but got through the installation quickly in safe mode.

Delighted to say that it is all working fine! Even some of the unmentioned issues I was having don't seem to be there! The customization and my keyboard shortcuts were imported automatically!

Sound quality also appears improved straight away! No problems with the MP3 artefacts on the outro!

Thanks again!

Last edited by Narayan; 06-03-2020 at 03:54 AM.
Narayan is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:21 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions Inc.