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Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes

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Scot Walker
Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 7, 2013 at 9:19:16 pm

I cut an indie film on FCP X and I've done the audio in 5.1 with FCP X's built-in pan mode.

I need to export this to be given to Apple for iTunes to be rented/sold as a movie.

Apple's spec requirement:

I'm putting a feature film I edited in FCP X on iTunes for sale/rent. The specs Apple requires are:

Single QT movie with audio

ProRes 422 (HQ) codec

LPCM audio
16 or 24 bit
48Khz

Ch.1 Left (Front)
Ch.2 Right (Front)
Ch.3 Center
Ch.4 LFE
Ch.5 Left Surround
Ch.6 Right Surround
Ch.7 & 8 Left Total / Right Total (Stereo Pair)

I looked at the Master File Share preset in FCP X and it only allows 5.1 sound.

So I went into Compressor and looked under the audio options and there is an "SMPTE DTV (L R C LFE Ls Rs Lt Rt)" preset in the pop-up menu. I set up the video with ProRes 422 (HQ) and the Audio with the SMPTE DTV preset, rendered out a range from FCP X and the resulting QT file has no audio. When I render the same range out with another Share preset, I get the audio.

Does anyone have any experience with FCP X and iTunes?

Thanks!
Scot


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Matias Canelson
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 8, 2013 at 6:39:55 am

You can set a new role for each audio track, then in the Share Master File settings window, set the roles as multitrack quicktime movie, it will create a quicktime movie with 8 audio channels.

It would be great if you fill a feedback form to Apple about this.

--
MatiasCanelson
http://www.canelson.com.ar


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Paul Figgiani
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 8, 2013 at 11:25:37 am

Scot,

This is how I would do it:

Export your 5.1 audio mix as a multichannel file. Do this using Compressor, like this:



Next, import that multichannel audio file into your 5.1 FCPX Event and add to Timeline. You should now have 7 audio segments in Timeline (L, R, C, LFE, LS, RS, and multichannel file).

Here is how I assign Roles:



Now you are ready for export. So Share/Master File. Set Export up as follows. Of course this is specific to how I named my Roles:



You're telling FCP to export the Six Channel Mix and include the Multichannel asset as a stereo pair.

Take a look at the resulting file attributes:

Multichannel:



Stereo:



Here's the 8 channel file in Audition:



That should do it. There may be a better way. It's how I do it ...

-paul.


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Scot Walker
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 8, 2013 at 3:09:15 pm

Thanks, Paul!!

I haven't assigned any roles and it would take a lot of time to go through a 113 minute feature and assign roles, so couldn't I export out just the audio as a 5.1 and then just the audio as a stereo mix and bring both of those in, lay them down in the timeline, assign the roles Surround & Stereo, export it as you stated with roles?

You are a life saver. Thank you for your time.

Scot



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Paul Figgiani
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 8, 2013 at 3:31:48 pm

so couldn't I export out just the audio as a 5.1 and then just the audio as a stereo mix and bring both of those in, lay them down in the timeline, assign the roles Surround & Stereo, export it as you stated with roles?

Yes. This should work. You'll need to pull in a stereo mix and each mixed down surround channel as independent mono segments. Then assign your roles, assemble, and export as I described above.

-paul.


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Scot Walker
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 8, 2013 at 4:14:23 pm

Paul,

Where is that dialog coming from where you say "Here is how I assign Roles:"? With the channels listed?

Thank you so much for your time.



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Paul Figgiani
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 8, 2013 at 4:46:39 pm

Scot,

Happy to help.

What I'm showing you in that snapshot is the Roles view in the Timeline Index. It's to the left of the Timeline. There's a button located at the very bottom left of the FCPX UI (next to the Project Library button) that will toggle it's visibility.

The Index is displaying predefined custom roles that I created for the channel assets. Do you know how to do this? (Modify menu/Edit Roles). Once you create them, there are various ways to assign them to your clips ...

-paul.


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Scot Walker
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 8, 2013 at 4:51:57 pm

Thanks, Paul.

Yes, I've gone through Role training and I understand how to create roles and sub-roles and I now know that your screenshot was the index with roles and you create sub-roles 1-L, 2-R, etc.

Right now, I have a 113 minute feature in my timeline and I have video clips with audio embedded, synchronized clips, and just audio files imported of music or dialog that has been cleaned up in Audition. All of these have the default role of Dialog right now. So I have Video and Dialog as my two roles.

So when you said "You should now have 7 audio segments in Timeline (L, R, C, LFE, LS, RS, and multichannel file)." that's where you lost me.

Thanks



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Scot Walker
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 8, 2013 at 5:00:03 pm

I'm sorry, I actually have the following roles in my project - Video, Titles, Dialogue, Music, Effects. So I need just a bit more explanation of how I get from there to your two Roles with sub-roles. Thanks!!



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T. Payton
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 8, 2013 at 5:07:18 pm

Please excuse my jumping in here, but here is a couple of alternative ways, instead of assigning roles for each element in your mix.

1) Take your entire feature and make it a compound clip. You'll want to create a new event to house this compound clip since it is in effect going to move your project to be housed in an event.

or

2) export your movie (or just the audio) as is with surround sound and then reimport into FCPX .

Then with that compound clip or complete clip export on a timeline, change your audio settings in the inspector for the compound clip to be mono channels for each. Then assign roles to each.

Then when you export as roles (as noted above) add a mono channel for each subrole and then a stereo mix at the end.

Obviously you'll want to create a test of this that is short so you can confirm your workflow.

------
T. Payton
OneCreative, Albuquerque


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Paul Figgiani
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 8, 2013 at 5:19:39 pm

T,

I'm open to better ways of doing this!

Thanks for getting involved ...

-paul.


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Scot Walker
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 8, 2013 at 5:20:43 pm

Thanks, T. Payton.

I did a little test. I took a single scene from my movie and put it into a new project that is 5.1. There are various audio clips in this, obviously. I set the role name of all those audio clips to Surround. I then exported just the audio as a stereo WAV. I imported that and gave it the role name of Stereo. I put that down on the timeline. I exported the movie with multitrack Quicktime for the roles and set the Stereo role to Stereo and the Surround role to Surround.

The resulting QT movie has 2 audio tracks: one track is 5.1, the other is stereo. When I play this QT movie in QT Player, I hear an echo sound. When I open this QT movie in Adobe Audition, I see 8 tracks of audio.

The question is is this movie compatible with the iTunes Store? The spec sheet I was given says:

Stereo:
LPCM in either Big Endian or Little Endian, 16-bit or 24- bit, at 48kHz

Audio must be stereo paired

5.1 Surround:
Ch.1 Left (Front) Ch.2 Right (Front) Ch.3 Center
Ch.4 LFE
Ch.5 Left Surround
Ch.6 Right Surround
Ch.7 & 8 Left Total / Right Total (Stereo Pair)

The only reference I see to "Left Total" or "Right Total" in Compressor or FCP X is an audio preset in Compressor that says "SMPTE DTV (L R C LFE Ls Rs Lt Rt). I'm assuming the Lt and Rt are "Left total" and "Right total".

Thanks again, everyone.



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Scot Walker
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 8, 2013 at 5:33:33 pm

OK, update.

This is weird. The echo sound I referred to doesn't happen if you play the movie in QT Player without skimming the playback head. If you simply play from the beginning, it sounds fine.

Here is a screenshot of the info QT Player gives me for the resulting movie.



This is it, right?

I'm using Bitmax as the iTunes Store aggregator and I'll send a test file to them on Monday and see if they can tell me if this is technically right or not.

Thank you so much for all your time on a Saturday!

Scot



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Rudy Ordonez
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Sep 23, 2014 at 10:49:11 pm

T. Payton,

I am having the same issues trying to deliver to BitMax. Im not too familiar with Assigning Roles.

Everything seems to be fine but when I export all 8 channels they get mashed into 1 audio channel.

Would it be too much to ask if a screen sharing session can take place?

Please let me know,


Thanks,


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T. Payton
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Sep 24, 2014 at 3:13:56 pm

Hi Rudy,

I'd be glad to help. Tell me the configuration of your 8 channels that you need to output. i.e. are they surround sound, or DME (Dialog, Music and Effects)?

- T.

------
T. Payton
OneCreative, Albuquerque


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Rudy Ordonez
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Oct 3, 2014 at 6:25:54 pm

Well Im delivering to BitMAX here is a Screen shot of the spec sheet.

I been told by a few industry professionals that FCPX cant not do this operation properly when it comes to 5.1 audio. So they helped me and got it done with FCP7. However I rely on FCP7 because I have a lot of projects to handle in 4K.

Im trying to get this done in Premiere Pro, but Time is running out with this new learning curb.

So im hoping one last time that FCPX can deliver and pass QC with no problem.






https://i1.creativecow.net/u-upload.php#


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T. Payton
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Oct 3, 2014 at 7:00:06 pm

Rudy,

I don't see your attachment. Why don't you email me directly. It's my cow user name without the period at my company name which is below and .net.

- T.

------
T. Payton
OneCreative, Albuquerque


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Scot Walker
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Oct 3, 2014 at 8:39:34 pm

I sent my feature movie to Bitmax using FCP X and it passed. The only issue was the channels weren't labeled, but they were in the right order. Follow the thread below for the method I used.

Also, I'm editing 5K RED Epic footage in FCP X natively without transcoding and it flies.



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Rudy Ordonez
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Oct 3, 2014 at 10:39:35 pm

Scott,

can you get to me on my personal email? (EmailRudyHere@gmail.com) I was hoping maybe you can screen share with me as i do my export, since you should be most familiar with my situation

Greatly appreciated!


Thanks.


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Paul Figgiani
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 8, 2013 at 5:18:39 pm

Ok.

You exported your 5.1 mixdown, yes? What I would do is open that file in Audition. In the File Inceptor - right + click on it and press "Extract Channels to Mono Files." Then save those out individually.

Back in FCP X - Import the Multichannel file and the 6 individual surround files. That is the 7 files that I am referring to.

Then append the 7 files into a copy of the original project. Of course you would first need to remove all the previous instances of the audio files.

This is what the Timeline should look like:



Once you are set up as above, you can follow my original instructions and export your 8 channel file.

As far as the custom Roles, after creating them - assign them by selecting each new clip that you imported into your Event. There is a Roles Popup located in the Info Pane in the Inspector. You want to do this *before* you append the clips to the Timeline.

You with me?

-paul.


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Scot Walker
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 8, 2013 at 5:58:24 pm

OK, I got it. :)

This is what I did and it works.

1. Exported as Stereo WAV
2. Imported that stereo WAV and set it to a custom role name "Stereo"
3. Laid it down in the timeline
4. Exported Master File with Roles set to Multitrack Quicktime
5. Make sure the first audio role is set to Surround and select from the Role label menu all of the audio roles I have (Dialogue, Effects, Music) but do not have the role Stereo selected.
6. Add an audio track and select the Stereo role name and make sure all the others are deselected. Set this role to Stereo.
7. Export it

It's important to have the order of the roles as surround first, then stereo.

If I import this resulting QT movie into FCP X, it automatically treats it as "5.1 + Stereo". Yay!

The first test I did where I posted the QT Player info in this thread was wrong because I had the stereo role on top and the surround on the bottom, which resulted in a "Custom" audio setup and wasn't right. You need surround first, then stereo.

Thanks everyone!!! I'll post an update about my experience with iTunes Store when it goes live.



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Scot Walker
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 10, 2013 at 4:23:15 pm

Well, the iTunes Store aggregator, Bitmax, told me that my test clip won't work. They said I need each channel on a different track in the QT movie.



They sent me a detailed PDF on how to do this in FCP 7, but they don't know how to do it in FCP X.

Ugh.



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T. Payton
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 10, 2013 at 4:40:38 pm

Scott,

That is actually easy quite easy, and I believe we covered it in the above posts. Just setup the roles for each of the channels you need to export.

For clarity here are some screen shots:

So assign you surround mix (single file that is) to 6 mono. Then setup and assign roles like this in the inspector:



Then when you export, you will use settings like this:



------
T. Payton
OneCreative, Albuquerque


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Scot Walker
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 10, 2013 at 4:48:14 pm

Thank you. Yes, I have Adobe Audition and I'll use Paul's last post about creating the separate audio files with Audition and bringing them in.

It will take way too long to delete or turn off all the original audio sources in the movie so I think I'll export it as ProRes and then create a new Project with that in the main storyline so that I can turn off all the original audio by turning off that one main clip and then adding the separate audio files per his directions. Make sense?

Thanks again for your time and energy on this.

Scot



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T. Payton
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 10, 2013 at 5:10:00 pm

You don't need to do it in Audition. FCPX can handle splitting the audio channels. See my original response. Sometimes a plethora of advice can be confusing.

But let me know if you need any help.

------
T. Payton
OneCreative, Albuquerque


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Scot Walker
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 12, 2013 at 3:14:24 pm

I went ahead and used the Adobe Audition method and my test movie passed. The only thing Bitmax noted about the movie was the channels didn't have labels in channels 1-6. Opening it up in Audition showed them labeled with numbers, not Left Right Center, etc. The mono tracks for each of those were labeled in FCP X and had roles assigned to them with those labels.

But they were the right channels in the right tracks in the QT movie so that's all that matters. I can get my feature film on iTunes now. Phew.

Thanks again for all of your help. It takes patience and I really appreciate the effort.

Scot



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Scot Walker
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 12, 2013 at 3:43:14 pm

Ha!!! WAV has a 4 gig file size limit and my feature film hit that file size before finishing. Ugh!!



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Scot Walker
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 12, 2013 at 3:48:21 pm

OK, going to use CAF instead of WAV since CAF doesn't have the 4 gig limit. Just updating in case someone in the future needs this info.



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Scot Walker
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jun 12, 2013 at 5:19:51 pm

Is it normal for the LFE channel to be basically blank? Thanks.



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T. Payton
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Oct 15, 2014 at 11:31:05 pm

I created a tutorial on how to do this easily in FCPX:







------
T. Payton
OneCreative, Albuquerque


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Matthew Huelsbeck
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jan 14, 2015 at 11:14:37 am

I am able to export out multiple channels of audio using roles but i need the audio to be 24bit not 16. How can I make that happen?


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T. Payton
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on Jan 14, 2015 at 7:46:04 pm

If you've got 24bit source material it will be 24bit. Where are you seeing it is 16 bit? Open in QuickTime and choose Get Info to see.



------
T. Payton
OneCreative, Albuquerque


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Felipe Fenton
Re: Exporting 8 channels of audio for iTunes
on May 13, 2016 at 10:04:30 pm

I ran into the same problem, and the info I was getting from the web sort of helped me come to this solution, which seems to work perfectly:

https://felipe-fenton.squarespace.com/blog/2016/5/11/exporting-51-audio-ste...

Hope it helps.


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