audio quality greatly reduced after production

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I've seen this question before and there seems to be no resolution or answer that satisfies. In my case im using CAMTASIA STUDIO 8 on a PC. I successfully capture videos and audio clips from Youtube and can manipulate them in the software quite well. The video and audio quality during this process is best quality. However, after production and sharing and uploading to Screencast or youtube, the audio degrades to a very poor tinny sound making the end result quite painful to listen to. The video quality appears unaltered.

I have been quite pleased with Camtasia studio 8 during the trial period. Some frustrating learning curves but after figuring some things out trial and error I think this is a wonderful product. However, if I cannot resolve the audio issue I'm afraid I cannot see purchasing the software. This is very frustrating and I would very much like to solve this audio quality issue as I have more projects im anxious to get started on.

If anyone has any advice or solution please do post. thanks for reading
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David L

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  • frustrated

Posted 7 years ago

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Kevin Mojek, Employee

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Could you please open a ticket with tech support? Thanks! Here's the link: https://support.techsmith.com/anonymous_requests/new

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Wayne McHugh

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I am also having the audio quality loss problem. I've followed the advice of using Audacity to set the project rate to 44,100Hz, and I'm saving it at a bit rate of 64Kbps. My original audio is taken from a PA system using high quality microphones with virtually 0 background noise and good voice depth. The only place where any audible degradation occurs is post-production in Camtasia (8.4.0). I did find, first up, if I set the bit rate in Camtasia production to 128Kbps I don't get that degradation, but of course it cost in the video file size. CD quality is 64Kbps so I don't need 128Kbps, but I say that in case it is helpful in tracking the cause. That said, I took part in the trials leading up to V8, and haven't until now had a reason to make real use of the product.  Well done Techsmith/Camtasia team!! Every time I've needed it to behave a certain way, it does, and apart from this audio issue I haven't had a single problem.
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Fred Grover, Champion

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Kevin are there any updates on this issue or has anyone sent a video with audio in so you can see and hear the low audio ? Let us know and thanks. Keep up the great work. Have a great day.
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Kevin Mojek, Employee

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As far as I know, nobody has followed up with tech support recently. With this being a long older thread, it sounds like there might be a few different issues being reported here:
  1. From your posts it sounds like produced audio is consistently at a lower level than in preview. If you re-import the produced content, is the volume lower than what's in the project? Is this specific to MP4 production? One quick test that would be helpful would be to export the project's audio as an uncompressed WAV file and see if the volume is lowered there too.
  2. Wayne's post seems to indicate something specific to MP4 production with the audio bitrate set below 128 kbps.
  3. We have recently found a bug where we may gradually lose sync on long clips with 48 kHz audio so that may be related to some of the posts here. If that's the case, we would also see the problem in preview but it might not be until after around 20-30 minutes of the preview running continuously before it would be noticeable.
  4. Other posts seem to indicate problems during recording.
Thanks for the reply and any additional details you could provide would be helpful!
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Wayne McHugh

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Kevin, I'm working a providing you with results from as wide a range of tests as I suspect might be relevant. At the same time I'm trying to understand what audio bitrate I should be using with the sample rate of 44KHz, in order to get audio that doesn't sound distorted in the tinny over-compressed direction. Other products I use operate with a sample rate of 48KHz.  When I look at the properties of the mp4 files I'm producing from Camtasia, I am seeing audio bitrate 61 instead of 64, 93 instead of 96, 45 instead of 48. Is that expected. Other video production products I have seem to produce files with the expected bit rate. An interesting observation - when I produced (in Camtasia) to mp3 at 64kbps, the resulting file properties say 64kbps. When I do the same to mp4, the audio properties say 61kbps. This exported from exactly the same project.  Should this be expected?
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Brian

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It is Camtasia, I just did not want to bother with having to use another program. But when I use Adobe Premiere to export the same exact video/audio, I don't get that tinny sound.
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Wayne McHugh

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I have done a good deal of testing to try and find helpful information. In my setting, it is MP4 production only, because other production options have different audio options and I don't know enough to be able to compare equivalent scenarios. If I produce MP4 with a bitrate of 128 I notice no degradation, at 96 a little, at 64 it can't be missed. If, using produce special audio, I export uncompressed wav or export mp3 (which is 128kbps bitrate) it sounds equivalent to the project track. My project is under 5 minutes in length. and the degradation is equally noticeable throughout. The way it is shaping I will have to settle with 128kbps and wear the audio overhead in the size file. It is a shame though, given the fabulously concise and clear MP4 video you are building for me. That said, I will continue to work with you if you want to pursue a solution. I was formerly a programmer (not in audio/video), so I understand the process of searching for clues to nail elusive bugs.
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Joe Morgan

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This posting may not be contributing much, but. I read where you tube recommends uploading audio at 256kbps.
So I test rendered some high fidelity mp4 video and the difference between the 128kbps video and 256kbps is noticeable. It's not a large difference but the 256kbps had a bit more separation and seems to have a little better range and sound quality. ( minimal difference )
What that might mean overall? I really can't say.

But when compared with the overall size of a video file. 

 The difference between 128kbps and 256kbps in my test created a file with less than a 1% increase in size.
About ( 1/5 ) of ( 1 % ) to put it more accurately.
 For myself, that makes the higher bit rate relatively unimportant.
If there is a good reason that this does matter,  I would like to here what that is.
Because I can be dumb as a post about some things. And I prefer not to be. LOL

Regards, Joe
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Wayne McHugh

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I am working in 720p HD for software tutoral videos. I'm in 720p only because I need the dimensions to display screen content clearly. I am working satisfactorily with 40% video quality, which produces small and adequately clear video files, but I do need clear audio. The sample MP4 video I've been working on comes out at 8.49M (audio 40kbps), 8.9M (64kbps), 10.4M (96kbps),11.4M (128kbps), 16.5M (256kbps). This is with identical video content. It depends on the video you're producing as to what variation in file size the audio bit rate produces.
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Wayne McHugh

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I am going to withdraw my request for assistance, and I'll explain why. Today I acquired some better audio recording software, and intentionally created my audio at stereo 48KHz in wav format. I got my original audio very clean. Having done that, there is very little to pick between the audio in my mp4 files created with audio bitrate at 64, 96 and 128 kbps. There is no doubt that there is an issue in Camtasia 8 wrt audio quality loss, but I have been able to manage it by using some better hardware and software to get a better original - the rest is presently just luck. The software I recorded in was Tracktion, in case anyone is interested.
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Kevin Mojek, Employee

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I'll agree with both Joe and Wayne here. For a 5-minute project produced to 1080p MP4, I'm seeing the audio stream size at only around 1.0 to 1.5% of the total file size using 96 kbps, 128 kbps, and 256 kbps... insignificant for the total file size and I'd think that percentage might be lower with longer projects. So for 1080p productions, I would go with the higher quality audio (256 kbps).

For projects produced to 720p, it seems a tougher call since the audio stream size may be more of a factor. For 96 kbps, 128 kbps, and 256 kbps, I'm seeing relative sizes for the audio stream at 9%, 11%, and 21%.128kbps seems like a good choice for this case.
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alvin

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Hi - I've been paying attention to this thread for some time and for more than a year we are still getting tinny sound from post production.  From default values to trying custom values, we still don't have a solution to get rid of the tinny sound.  We've tried 1080p and 720p.  Video is all fine, but no matter what tinny sound is there.  We are getting by for now, but we may have to switch to another solution.  For the cost we paid for the software, we were not expecting that the audio quality would be degraded after post production.  We use this to record our webinars and everything sounds excellent in editing, but it is definitely lower quality afterwards.

What actual custom setting should we be using since the default 720p and 1080p settings are not producing excellent quality?

Or is there no solution for now and it maybe be fixed in a future update? (if this is the case please make it a priority)

Thanks
(Edited)
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Brian

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For me, regardless that it was 720 or 1080, and multiple audio output settings, it does not remove that tinny sound on output. I tried every config possible in outputting. When I took the same video and post produced in Adobe Premiere, it did not have that tinny sound. Something in Camtasia lies the problem. As the same output setting in Premiere pro did noti create that. I went over to Adobe Premier for post production. and just use Camtasia sparingly now for recordings over 5min.... Screenr has been just as effective and simple for quick 5min or less videos. I was being lazy in that Camtasia was awesome to use in simple post production and has great features...but that tinny sound on output just drove me away.
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Kevin Mojek, Employee

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Yes, unfortunately there is a bug in 8.4.1 with noise removal; there should be a maintenance release available shortly which will include a fix for that issue. I'll update this thread when that is released.

For those producing MP4 files via the built-in production presets, there is a pretty significant difference in the audio settings:
  • For the 480p presets (with or without SmartPlayer), the AAC bitrate is set at 56 kbps, which is low enough to cause some pretty noticeable degradation.
  • For the 720p presets (with or without SmartPlayer), the AAC bitrate is set at 128 kbps. I'm no expert at judging audio quality, but to me this setting seems acceptable and maybe a good compromise between file size and quality if the video is intended for streaming. However, I do notice some differences when encoding the same audio at 128kbps and 256kps and switching back and forth between the two, so encoding at 128kbps may not be the best choice if you're targeting the highest quality compressed audio..
  • In the maintenance release that I mentioned above, we'll have two new production presets that will default to a maximum 1080p resolution and will encode audio at 256kbps.
For those producing to MP4 via the custom production route, I'd recommend double-checking your audio settings. There was a bug in early versions of CS 8 where we'd default to 56 kbps:

If that's the case, if you change it to something higher, that setting should be remembered for subsequent productions.

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alvin

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Thanks Kevin for the feedback.  I'm hoping the update will resolve the issue addressed in this thread.  Looking forward to it and thanks for making it a priority.

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Brian Urbanek

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Hi.  I am having the same issue with the latest release 8.4.3.  Was this fixed in 8.4.2 or 8.4.3?  Has the fix been added as of 9/22/2014?  This is a really frustrating issue and requires extra work on all of your clients because we have to un-marry the audio and video in CS, take the audio from adacity and re-import it back in.  Note: for some people on this thread even this workaround is not working.  I will try this today, but suspect I will run into the same issue.  Please Techsmith work on this issue.
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Fred Grover, Champion

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As far as I know it has been resolved. I have not had any issues with the audio since the upgrade. But, I have not tried my Logitech USB Headset since it sounded to tinny for me. That I determined was the cheapness of the Logitech as it did the same thing in Adobe Audition CC and Audacity. Let us know how it turns out for you and if possible please post a short video or a long one to let us hear and see the issue. Thanks for posting and sorry to hear you are having this problem.

I would suggest that if you are still having problems to also put in a TechSmith Support Ticket to see if they can help resolve this problem. The link is below:

http://support.techsmith.com/

I hope this helps a little for you.
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Brian Urbanek

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Thanks Fred.  After reading several discussions on this, and trying my personal system and having the same issues, I believe I have come to a reasonable solution to resolve the issues with "Tinny Audio" that I am having.  In this thread someone stated that Camtasia Studio requires a bit rate of 128 kbps audio at a sample rate of 44.1 kHz.  The MP4s that I am using are converted from Webex ARF files.  The resulting MP4 is created at 17 kbps bit rate and 8 kHz Audio Sample Rate.  If I take this file and import into Handbrake and convert the audio and video together with the audio set at 128 kbps bit rate and 44.1 kHz Audio Sample rate, the issue is resolved once I take the file that Handbrake creates with these settings and import it into Camtasia.  So this is a reasonable solution for me because I do not have to worry about synchronization issues in Camtasia with the audio and video.  Folks, if you are having this issue, please make sure that you check you MP4, if it is less than 128 kbps bit rate and 44.1 kHz you will have the audio become tinny once you import to the Camtasia timeline.  Please let me know if my solution works for you.  Thanks to everyone with their help on this.  What a mess, and to be honest I am not sure that this is fully a TechSmith issue, now that I have a simple and batchable solution in Handbrake.
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Fred Grover, Champion

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Thanks for sharing that feedback Brian. It made me once again try my USB Headset and another video from another source and then I checked the settings and the audio was off on the video I imported and your solution in using HandBrake worked. I have used HandBrake before and this is another great software. I do not think this is a Camtasia Studio or TechSmith Issue as when people get video or audio from another source other than what they have created you definitely get different results and outcomes.

Once again thanks for sharing your feedback and posting it here for others to see. Have a great day.
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Lisa Larson-Kelley

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YES. Thank you so much @Brian Urbanek -- exporting audio out of audacity at 44100 128k MP3 solved the distortion issue. FYI, Camtasia support -- this need to be documented!!
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bobricek

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I have similar problem and I found a simple workaround.

I record videos with Camtasia Studio. I have a high quality microphone, so that's not the problem.

When editing the video, the sound is fine.

But after production, there is very noisy "rattle". It sound like I was trying to record too loud sounds. But it's not true and when editing the video, the sound is fine.

I found solution: I have to export my videos as WMV. 

The sound is also OK, when I export WAV. But when I import the WAV back to Camtasia and create another MP4, the sound is again very bad.
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Joe Morgan

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Have you tried doing a custom production MP4 and increasing the bit rate of the audio?
See Image below, click to enlarge.
The default setting is 128 bits and to me, that setting never sounds good.
Although, I don't get the noisy rattle you mentioned either.


Also, WMV exports using VBR> "Variable Bit Audio" Maybe that's helping you as well.

Camtasia's favorite audio format is 44.1000 Hz 16bit .wav. That applies to microphone settings as well. I'm pretty sure most " High Quality mics record at 48,000 Hz.

Regards, Joe





(Edited)
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bobricek

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Hi Joe,

yes, I've tried different Bit rates, 112, 256, 1024... Nothing helped. It looks that WMV is the only solution for me.

The wierd thing is, that the sound is perfect when editing the video, I have the problem only when I create the production file.
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Samaan Buisson

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I'm using the trial for this software, but I'm having the same issues. As soon as I put my video into camtasia it distorts the audio to a tinny sound. Can anyone help me? My email is samaan010 at gmail.com
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Patrick Palmer

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UGH, me too..... it's bad and I just want the damn thing to work!
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Fred Grover, Champion

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Has anyone contacted TechSmith Support on this or got a response back from them if they did ? I have not experienced this unless I am using my Logitech USB Headset when recording the audio. But, I use a more than necessary sound setup too. Let us know and thanks as it will help others to know if TechSmith is looking into this issue or has a solution or fixed it. I am using the latest version of Camtasia Studio for the PC.
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Kelly Mullins, TechSmith Employee & Helper

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Hello,
I'm sorry you're having trouble with the audio after the video is produced.

I did just speak with our Technical Support team and they would like to hear from those who are experiencing the "degraded audio after production" issue.

Getting to the bottom of this might include uploading your project so we can see what is going on.

So, if you are having this issue, please contact technical support here:

https://support.techsmith.com/hc/en-us

When submitting a ticket, please reference this forum page.

Kelly
User Assistance
TechSmith
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Stephen Coxon

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wow..just wasted my life reading through this...no solution..dire indeed
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kristian.knutson

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Ya so it seems like everyone is having the issue of terrible audio when recording the onboard audio of the computer with camtasia.  I could not fix this issue, but a work around is to use audacity or a similar program to record the computers audio seperately, and then delete the terrible camtasia audio and replace it with the quality audio recording from audacity.  You can do this fairly easily in almost any video editing software.  For a program that you eventually have to pay for (camtasia) this audio issue is pretty inexcusable!   
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kayakman, Champion

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I capture most of my audio [narrations] using Camtasia Recorder or Camtasia's Voice narration function

But those captures do tend to be noisy

I simply export the CS audio as a WAV, and import that into Audacity, where I use Audacity's noise removal function  to clean up the CS audio; I save that as a new WAV and import/substitute the clean audio for the project's original

results, for me, are usually excellect
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Scott Schmerer, Senior Software Engineer

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Hi Everyone,

Both Camtasia Studio 8.x and the newly released Camtasia 9.0 mix audio at 44.1 kHz, 16-bit, Stereo.  So if you have control over the audio format, it's best to use this format when recording audio.

In Camtasia 9.0, we also did some work to improve resampling when audio files are imported in other formats, such as 48 kHz audio.  You can download the free trial of Camtasia here if you would like to see if we have solved your problem.

Please feel free to post your feedback and feature requests here in our Community forums and remember, all technical support-related inquiries should be directed to our dedicated Technical Support team at https://support.techsmith.com/


Apologies for the inconvenience and the wait,

Scott Schmerer

Senior Software Engineer, Camtasia Windows