Oooh, you don't want to use AE for a job like that -- it has painfully-limited audio capabilities. You'd be better off using a real audio application. Audition comes to mind. So does Audacity, which is a freebie.
I understand. The problem is that I am operating a lot of unique renders from a vast library of audio samples. So, I don't have the luxury of treating each export individually. I could go back and try and batch-limit the vast libraries of audio files...but it'd be much nicer to just apply an effect to the comp on export.
Not that I know. AE is really too limited for that and aside from the lack of a suitable effect for this, the possible sample rate issues alone are not worth the trouble. Even the free Audacity's batch processing would be more sophisticated...
Thanks guys. I know AE's audio capabilities are severely malnourished. So... I accept that there is NOT a solution inside AE for my question. I know there are infinite ways to batch process audio outside of AE. We use Audition, and some nice VST plugins... so, IF we had the luxury of mastering audio outside of AE, we would. We do as much normalizing as possible before we include files into the audio libraries: sample/bit rates, mono, hard limiting, etc.
Our workflow is such that we have a vast library of audio variables that are sitting on a server. We receive a data set from our client that indicates which specific audio variables to incorporate into an AE project. Then our visual elements are also scripted (specifically text layers, captions) to correspond to the audio. (Think audio/visual mad libs).... We can't possibly build all the combinations and master them in advance.
Our workflow is: receive data, run script, import relevant audio files into an .aep, edit corresponding text layer values, render, deliver to corresponding target recipient (each one getting a unique video). It's kind of a realtime workflow, meaning the whole process takes about 5 minutes to return 1000s of customized video experiences. Does that make sense?
Anyway, I really value both your experience in AE. I'm using new Adobe ID, so I look like a new guy, but have been using the forums for a couple years and often found your answers and insights to be most helpful! Thanks.