Mix to Mono in Screenflow 6
Just updated to Screenflow 6 and I don't see the "mix to mono" button. I see you can adjust with this weird slider, but not input an absolute value.
And then when I have selected multiple audio tracks, I used to be able to mix all to mono at once. Now I can't!
This is frustrating because my microphone only records one channel and I need to mix all tracks of mono. Since screenflow doesn't have an option to do this when you record like most programs, I need to do it after the fact. Now you have taken this away all together.
How can I fix this?
I would also like to add, to those listening in from Telestream: You created this forum and invited us in. We answered and started using it. We found some things we all agree on should be fixed. We discussed. We helped each other. And we did it with a friendly tone.
While I do understand that you have a your formal processes for feature requests. If you ALSO want this forum to develop, expand and be useful - a thing would be that it is also a venue where the developers occasionally listen in.
Whenever I feel a community is disconnected from the parent organisation I usually loose interest pretty quick. Even though Craig is here I must still get the impression that he is not disconnected in the same way that we are.
Mattias Karlsson Sjöberg the developers do focus on their job of coding and testing. I am the eyes and ears.
The reason why the developers ask that each user fill out the form is so they have can have a direct quantification of demand as well as direct contact with the users. That allows for the, sometimes important, private channel of communication for things they'd prefer not to discuss in a public forum given the competitive nature of the industry.
The reason why I often ask that when you fill out the form you link to the forum thread is precisely so the developers can read it.
Believe me when I say the developers do listen. As the eyes and ears I am a channel to the brain. It is up to each of you to provide the information so they can communicate back as they can, while they continue to focus on their main task, which is evaluating how to prioritize features and then do the coding.
It's one of the unfortunate, unintended results of the rise in independent developers. People are now much more used to having developers on demand and being able to communicate with them directly. Something not every company wants/can do. And at the same time many developers dislike communication also.
sancarn Certainly. Coding and quality assurance testing take lots of effort and if the people doing that have to divide their attention, it can slow development and release.
Some of the old timers may remember that ScreenFlow was VaraSoft originally. The same coders are now focused on making the best possible software for you rather than wearing too many hats.
I know what you're saying.
But it's all a matter of opinion. A lot of people prefer developers who they can communicate with because they feel it creates more of a community atmosphere.
As an example look at Minecraft. In the past the community was largely strong because they had contact with the developers and could influence the game's development. Recently it has felt like those who develop the game work outside the community, the community is weakening and people are moving onto other things.
I don't disagree with you, developers focussing on development is great because they can be more productive but many people inside the community would claim that they prefer more influence over more development.
Here are my particular pain points with the implementation of this new feature:
My USB audio interface (Focusrite Scarlett 2i4) hardwires its two inputs to left and right. So if you plug a single mic preamp into input 1, SF always records it as hard left. I take it this is not unusual.
Previous versions of SF had the Mono switch, which I applied immediately after capture. I then edit, resulting in dozens if not hundreds of audio segments in a project. Some of those segments also have audio level adjustments etc. that I do not want to lose.
I just opened an edited SF5 project in SF6. To my shock, all of my audio was panned hard left again - SF6 wasn't smart enough to translate the mono switch to center pan.
I can edit the pan for one segment...but I still have dozens (if not hundreds, depending on the project) of other segments with the 'wrong' pan. I can't just copy and then paste properties, because I don't want to re-paste the audio levels; only the new pan settings. So, I cannot edit any old SF project in SF6 without wasting a very large amount of time fixing the audio.
I thought a workaround would be extracting audio. If I extract one channel, I expect the new segment created would be automatically panned to the center, and the old segment would be muted. Neither happens; I now have doubled up audio, both panned hard left.
On some of my projects, I have microphone in channel 1 and external audio in channel 2. I had hoped I could extract those two channels into two mono segments in one command. Apparently not; I either have to do two extracts and manual pans...or continue to render audio only, run an automated process in Adobe Audition, and re-import that.
So - the newly-paid-for SF6 upgrade goes into the dustbin for now; I'll continue using SF5.
I have team om 10 holding off. Especially after we noticed that legacy thing. But it's probably not long before 6.01 where it should be back.
(a whole other solution would of course be to let us record just one channel to a mono track. so you would only need that check box when you did something wrong, instead of every time you do a recording…)
Dan Rollins the way ScreenFlow 6 handles audio channels is different than 5. There was no way to retain that function given ScreenFlow's multichannel handling. The developers will likely have to build something new that does something similar.
Note on Page 110 of the User Guide regarding the implemented pan buttons
Note: This setup emulates how earlier versions of ScreenFlow behave: the left input channel is sent to the left output channel, and the right input channel is sent to the right output channel. Please be aware that the 'Mix to Mono' feature has been removed: this functionality can now be achieved with audio mixer's pan feature.
One isn't likely to mix 16 separate channels to mono as one might with a muxed 2 channel source. So there needs to be a rethink on how the user can mix 2 (which two?) to mono.
The developers are investigating but I just want to make it clear that a function wasn't simply removed. A new way needs to be created.
Editing with headphones is difficult. And you might have stereo background music and mono recorded speech. A mono record option would be better all together, but I believe I used to ask about that way back in version 1. But it wasn't possible. So we all settled with the "mix to mono"-switch as second best.
@Mattias Please help me understand the difficulty with editing stereo. If I had background music, it would be in a separate track so the ducking can be used. In editing, I'd just mute that track if it was bothering me..
I'm trying to see use cases for mono that don't relate to defects and shortcomings in external input devices (microphones, etc.). As I mentioned earlier, my only need for mix-to-mono was to compensate for a mic that was either weak or not properly positioned.
Most high end sound cards comes with dual microphone inputs. To record stereo or two microphones at the same time.
But in 99% of the Screenflow use cases in my company we record a single microphone. As there's no "record a single channel"-feature in Screenflow all recording sessions gives you a sound/video file with the speaker in the left ear.
Editing and monitoring using speakers or headphones is difficult when the sound comes from one ear.
So the first thing you have to do, every time you have recorded something, is to find the audio tab and "switch to mono". From ten times a day, to a hundred if you record additional fragments here and there.
That is the difficulty that I believe all of us who have complained above have.
What we most of all would like is "record the single microphone as a mono file"-function. But my understanding is that we can't have that. So we have all settled with the quick clicking in the audio tab.
That used to be simple and didn't require much thinking. A hassle, but not a big hassle.
Now suddenly it isn't quick clicking anymore. It slows down the workflow and it increases the cognitive load. What you really want to do is to start working on editing what you just have recorded, but instead you need to concentrate on "fixing" the audio.
Many times what you have recorded is a 3-4 second bit of dialogue sound to replace or fix a mistake. And all you want to do is as fast as possible edit it into the screen recording.
That is kind of it.
Mattias Karlsson Sjöberg Thanks for that very clear explanation.
Would silencing the weak stereo track be a usable interim solution for editing?
Unfortunately, this can only be applied to one audio clip at a time. Perhaps yet another feature request: the ability to select all clips and apply an audio effect globally. There may also be audio filters in the default set or filters that can be added to macOS that would provide some interim relief.
I've gotten used to the new "mono" workflow in SF6, even if it's more button clicks - before, it was cmd-2 and one click, now you need to unfurl the mix section, open the pan widget, set the pan widget, and click off to accept it. (I throw in the extra step now of clicking Solo, to make sure no residual noise from the unused channel gets mixed in.)
I do like the addition of the solo button, pan controls, and per-channel volume that is separate from the master volume for the track, as I can do balancing in the mixer widget and fades with the master levels without having to remember "this track was loud; remember to fade from 85 to 0, not 100 to 0."
However, the current mixer implementation is so inconsistent and buggy, it can be a real distraction. To wit:
- SF sees my external audio interface as 2 channels, which it deems to initially pan left and right. However, it sees my computer audio (recorded at the same time) as 4 channels, which it pans all to the center. Why the different default treatments? Pick one. (Or better, make it user-configurable. Or an old feature request: Let the user create a library of preferred audio or video clip or action settings that we can recall or apply with a click of a button in a floating UI.)
- I cannot tab out of or click off of the local volume levels in the mixer; I have to explicitly press Return. Which is a pain, especially as there are two to four fields (see above) you want to set together. Dismissing the panning widget is similarly frustrating. These fields should work the same way as other data entry fields - clicking outside the data entry box, or pressing Tab, accepts the edit.
- BTW, really could use numeric confirmation that pan is indeed centered. It does at least have a wide "detent."
- Worse of all: SF will occasionally, randomly forget the mixer settings after an edit. I can pre-set a track to be panned to the center, L channel solo, etc., and after a clip split, the mixer section the UI will disappear for the segment after the split, and the panning reverts to the default (hard L/R in this case). I have to re-create the segment after the split to regain the mixer controls.
- Audio waveform drawing can be incorrect after an edit. The case where it draws wrong most often is if you have a track with screen capture and computer audio. Splitting it to a silent area and time stretching the segment can cause a bogus waveform to be drawn. (There's also the old bug where there will be a taller-than-it-should-be waveform "nub" drawn in the frame after the split after some edits.)
This new functionality certainly feels like two steps forward, one back (or two, or three) back.