10 Replies Latest reply on Jun 15, 2012 3:01 AM by jguzu

    Audio playback warning


      Hi guys.


      First posting in the forums here.


      I have been working on a project in After Effects and all was going well. Today I went to replace some audio that was in the project and when I did this the following warning appeared: Unable to start audio playback. Please confirm your audio device is properly configured or change the driver selection in Preferences: Audio Hardware.


      So I checked the preferences and everything seemed okay as it was using the system settings. I checked the audio preferences in system preferences (Mac) and everything was okay. I rebooted the system and still the same problem. The original audio file was playing fine within the project and other projects seem to be okay.


      After checking the usual stuff, as above, I thought the problem may be with the audio file I am trying to replace. I played the file, that was created in Soundtrack Pro - which is an AIFF, in QuickTime. I noticed the metadata was saying that it was a 6 channel Linear PCM. So I changed it to stereo, thinking that was the problem. No such luck, it's still coming up with the warning.


      The annoying thing is after this warning displays After Effects become unresponsive or just crashes out completely. What other thing do you think I could try, has anyone come across this problem before?


      Apologies for the lengthy post, I just wanted to make sure I covered everything.


      Many thanks for your help in advance.



        • 1. Re: Audio playback warning
          Todd_Kopriva Level 8

          What version of After Effects? Have you installed the recent updates? What operating system?

          • 2. Re: Audio playback warning
            Mylenium Most Valuable Participant

            Probably a flakey Quicktime component.... I would check the respective sub-folder in your Library and remove all components that look conspicuous, then see if it makes any difference. Also if you use external audio devices try to unplug them. Could wel lbe AE is trying to use them and inialization fails because anotehr component is required to run them.



            • 3. Re: Audio playback warning
              jjratnarajah Level 1

              Hey Todd.


              I am using CS5 with Mac OS X 10.6.6. I try to keep up to date with updates but may be I have missed one. Will check with my machine tonight.





              • 4. Re: Audio playback warning
                jjratnarajah Level 1

                Hi Mylenium.


                Thanks for your reponse. I'll check the library and see if anything is odd there. Shall I check system library or user library? I don't use external audio devices other than my speakers. But again I'll double check the system sound settings.


                Will report back when i have tried these things.



                • 5. Re: Audio playback warning
                  Mylenium Most Valuable Participant

                  Check both. Normally they should be in your global Library, but you never know...



                  • 6. Re: Audio playback warning
                    jjratnarajah Level 1

                    Hey Guys.


                    As promised I am reporting back. I think I've cracked it.


                    Although the the audio hardware preferences were set to use the system defaults it was still crashing. So rather than use the system default option I chose built-in digital output (even though this is the system default) and it worked. No more crashes occuring. I hope that makes sense.


                    I have no idea why choosing system default as the audio hardware option would cause the crash, but that seems to be the culprit.


                    Anyway, thanks for all of your help.



                    • 7. Re: Audio playback warning
                      Imaginary Rob

                      I have this same problem -- I've reported it as a bug.  OSX provides a way to easily switch audio output device, and AE is clearly meant to be able to follow it without having to go into app prefs.  Hence the "System Default" option in the first place.


                      CS5 needs a big bugfix pass.

                      • 8. Re: Audio playback warning

                        had this bug in CS3/CS4 and still in CS5.5


                        come on Adobe...its freeking annoying


                        Windows 7 system.

                        • 9. Re: Audio playback warning

                          I have this same error. AE will play the audio back fine in a RAM preview for as long as I like until I move outside of the program (using Photoshop or even just going into the finder window). After that I get this error as if AE no longer has the permission to run the audio. Sometimes I will switch the audio source from System Default to Built in Output and that might make it playback the audio again but if I leave AE again that'll stop working and no amount of switching prefs will help coax it back. Basically at that point I'd have to restart if I wanted audio.


                          FYI Running CS6 now on iMac with latest version of Lion. This is also was happening in CS5.5 though, the only difference is this error used to sometimes cause AE to crash. CS 6 has yet to crash but I still have the problem.


                          Any other thoughts on how to fix this?

                          • 10. Re: Audio playback warning

                            Hi Dave, I'm having the exact same problem as you are. I have not found a solution BUT I did notice that if you open the application Audio MIDI Setup (it's in the Utilites folder, which you can find inside the Applications folder), you'll find that there is an audio device named After Effects 11.0 and another one named After Effects 11.0.1 (that's if you've updated it, of course). The one named 11.0 has 2 outputs enabled, but the 11.0.1 one has 0 outputs enabled. If you try enabling the Built-In Output, switch to After Effects, then switch back to the setup application you'll find that for some strange reason it goes back to having no outputs enabled. Personally I first quit AE, then I deleted the 11.0 device, followed by enabling the outputs in the device named 11.0.1 and finally I re-opened After Effects and noticed that it enabled both inputs and outputs as it was starting up, but a few second later (while still starting up) it disables them back again.


                            I've tried creating an aggregate device within the Audio MIDI Setup app with the outputs enabled and then changing the output in AE to the aggregate device instead of the Built-In Output but it still won't work. I really hope a future update fixes this!