11 Replies Latest reply on Aug 6, 2012 5:31 AM by Charles VW

    5.1 Mixing in Audition CS5.5


      Is it just me or is surround mixing superior in Premiere than it is in Audition? In premiere, I have the ability to do multichannel panning AND and I can save the whole thing as Dolby Digital 5.1. I can't seem to find either of these functions in Audition. I can't seem to open Dolby files either for editing even if I wanted to tweak and save into a multichannel WAV, bring into Premiere and reexport 5.1.


      I suspect this has already been discussed but I couldn't find it so I'd appreciate some guidance.

        • 1. Re: 5.1 Mixing in Audition CS5.5
          MusicConductor Level 3

          Audition can pan brilliantly for 5.1, and can output a 5.1 wave that you can import into Premiere for the Dolby 5.1 encode.


          Here are the details.  Audition 4/CS5.5 requires that you set up your session intially as a 5.1 session.  You can also choose stereo or mono, and once that choice is made, you can't "expand" a stereo or mono session to 5.1.  (As a result, any session I think I might want for 5.1 later, but not right away, I set up as 5.1 anyway, then only mix to front L/R initially.)  If you add busses to your mix, you need to choose carefully whether they need to be stereo or 5.1-capable, depending on the content.  On each of your tracks you'll now see a multichannel panner that looks like a binaural dummy head.  Double-click to expand, and automate your panning to your heart's content.  It's an amazingly flexible panner but works differently than Premiere's or that of older versions of Audition, which should be an advantage in most instances. 


          When it comes time to export, choose 48Khz (for video applications), a 5.1 wave, and 24 or 32 bit depth.  That file should read into Premiere automatically with correct channelization, and you merely need to set up a Premiere project for Dolby encoding to make it convenient for return visits.


          Occasionally someone asks why Audition doesn't have a Dolby or DTS encoder, and the reason is simple: it's an expensive license compared to the cost of the product otherwise, and is one that only a niche of users would actually use.  I know that's not as convenient, but at least you have the Minnetonka add-on for Premiere for that handsome sum.  Is it still $250?

          • 2. Re: 5.1 Mixing in Audition CS5.5
            JZuck Level 1

            Thanks. I really appreciate you taking the time to respond. I guess I get the round trip back into Premiere for AC3 export. I find it hard to believe that it's a low volume request, however, since isn't AC3 the most prominent surround distribution method? In any case, I guess I'll just live with the round trip. Ideally, once I bought the plug-in, it could be made to work in Audition as well, no?


            On the panning thing, I'm still a little confused and it might have to do with my lack of vocabulary because I'm really just getting started at this. In premiere I can set what ammount to keyframes for surround panning. I can even record those keyframes like a macro. So if I'm the sound designer for Apocolypse Now, I can dynamically place the helicopter sounds as well as the Flight of the Valkeries diagetic music.


            In audition, I can use envelopes to dynamicly keyframe sound placement and that works beautifly. However, when working on a 5.1 track, I seem to only be able to make global track level changes to sound location and the envelope keyframes are ignored.


            So my question is this. I want to make the sounds of the helicopter and the Wagner start in the front left speaker, cross the center, and fade out via the right rear speaker. How do I do that in Audition? Am I just missing something obvious?


            • 3. Re: 5.1 Mixing in Audition CS5.5
              JZuck Level 1

              Nevermind. I just found this video:

              http://tv.adobe.com/watch/short-and-suite/multitrack-mixing-automation-in-adobe-audition-c s55-/


              and it answered my question visually. I had to go to the mixer to find the other parameter specific envelops. I can't do the write function I have in Premiere but at least I can get it done. Thanks.



              • 4. Re: 5.1 Mixing in Audition CS5.5
                MusicConductor Level 3

                Good work!  But I believe you CAN do the write function as Premiere does.  On the channel strip there is an automation status dropdown box.  Have your panner window open, the CTI positioned where you want to record automation, set the dropdown to "write," press play, and write away.


                Your point about how it's hard to believe that AC-3 for Audition is a low-volume request is a good one.  It IS a request that comes up from time to time.  I guess the developers have left it to Premiere since Audition can't create DVDs directly.  I sure would use it too, if it were in AA.

                • 5. Re: 5.1 Mixing in Audition CS5.5
                  Robert J. Johnston Level 3

                  The "Write" is not yet implemented in CS5.5 Audition.

                  • 6. Re: 5.1 Mixing in Audition CS5.5
                    MusicConductor Level 3

                    Oh, crud.  You're so right.  You can grab that panner and hear sound anywhere you place it and make flybys all day, but you can't record the moves.  So what you want to do has to be accomplished by placing manual points.  That could take all day, I guess. 


                    Sorry, I was dreaming.

                    • 7. Re: 5.1 Mixing in Audition CS5.5

                      Here's my work-around.  I light up my old PC, open AA 3.0.  Then I open my audio files, fix them up as surround sound tracks and then save them as Dolby 5.1 files.  Then I open Discwelder and burn them to DVD and play them back on my Samsung Home Theater system.  They are 4-6 backing tracks for a live performance of of Old Norse Poetry. A good friend of mine does a lot of voice-over and radio production using the old Cool Edit Pro.

                      (Note to Adobe:  your upgrades are downgrades. While it was nice to finally be able to use AA on my Mac, you seriously FUBAR'ed it. ) 

                      • 8. Re: 5.1 Mixing in Audition CS5.5
                        Charles VW Adobe Employee

                        You can record this automation in CS6 which was released earlier this year.

                        • 9. Re: 5.1 Mixing in Audition CS5.5
                          lavransrm@gmail.com Level 1

                          I have CS6- (Adobe Audition), but I haven't been able figure out how to do this. Are you referring to Premiere or Audition?



                          • 10. Re: 5.1 Mixing in Audition CS5.5
                            MusicConductor Level 3

                            Hi lavransrm, Charles is definitely talking about Audition CS6 released not too long ago, the current spring 2012 release.  First, go find the surround panner window, which is a dockable panel that is much easier to use when opened and docked than the tiny "mini-me" version that sits on the channel controls strip.  Next, twirl down the track automation lanes area.  Now, if you understand how "read-write-latch" works in the channel automation, and you have the 5 surround panel parameters enabled (resulting in 5 more 'rubber bands' below your audio track display), you can record your fader moves in real time, and/or place and edit control points on the bands in the control lane.  You have to enable the control bands individually because there are potentially so many dozens of things you can add control bands for, that they default to having only the one for track volume, and make you 'open up' anything else so as to avoid unnecessary confusion. 


                            I'm not sure that's worded very well, but there's enough help-file and community help stuff on this, with pretty pictures worth far more than a thousand of my words, that any additional questions you have might be answered nicely there.  But be assured this is working VERY nicely - I won't make that mistake twice!

                            • 11. Re: 5.1 Mixing in Audition CS5.5
                              Charles VW Adobe Employee

                              And a screenshot to help describe what's going on:


                              Screen Shot 2012-08-06 at 7.23.33 AM.jpg


                              Also, it is worth mentioning that there's an optimization that won't record track keyframe automation if there's no clips on the track, so if you're trying to record automation, make sure your track isn't empty (unless, of course, it is a bus or master track).


                              Audition's surround panner is superior in several ways (I'm sure I'm forgetting some)

                              1. It is possible to route audio to only the LFE, not possible in Pr
                              2. It is possible to actually PAN a stereo source in a 5.1 space in any direction and width.  Premiere's Stereo to 5.1 "panner" is actually a balance control in the horizontal (Left/Right) axis.  So moving the puck left/right is only adjusting the balance between L/C/R and Ls/Rs.  Here in Audition, you can actually have the stereo source widen and get narrow.
                              3. It is possible to disable any of the 6 destination channels
                              4. Audition's LFE channel isn't low-pass-filtered, it can send audio untouched to that channel as it should
                              5. Audition's surround panner has an optional larger UI in a dedicated panel that can be docked making it easier to use
                              6. Audition's surround panner gives you a rough indication of the relative level that is being sent to each of the satellite channels