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Thread: Sound weirdness

  1. #1
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    Default Sound weirdness

    I have a 466 MHz Digital Audio Mac, running MacOS 9.2.1. It is mostly a ProTools machine; I am running PTLE 5 with a digi 001 interface, and it all runs fine.

    I acquired a LaCie 120 GB FireWire drive, and I installed Mac OS 10.3.9 and Toast 6 on it in a separate partition so I could boot in OSX and write DL DVD's for archiving.

    Everything plays well together except the system sound when I am booted in OSX. After the system is booted, any sound that is routed to the speaker on the computer (which is all of it - I only run PTLE in MacOS 9) has an extreme approx 4 Hz tremelo, as if the output were sent through a VCA with a 4 Hz LFO on the control voltage which swings the output from clipping to inaudibility; everything sounds like wacka-wacka-wacka-wacka... Gee, I hope that's not too technical for you guys. ;^)

    When the machine is booted in OS9, the system sound is fine.

    I have updated the system firmware as well as Quicktime, and neither upgrade made any diff. Anyone have any ideas as to what I may be experiencing?
    Gordon in Austin

  2. #2
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    Just a wild guess, but I wonder if OSX is freaking out due to the presence of the 001?

    Have you checked the DUC to see if anyone has a similar setup?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by M.Brane
    Just a wild guess, but I wonder if OSX is freaking out due to the presence of the 001?

    Have you checked the DUC to see if anyone has a similar setup?

    I hadn't thought of that, but I'll do it.

    Anybody else have any ideas?

    Gordon in Austin
    Gordon in Austin

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    Gordon,

    does it still go wacka-wacka when you plug into the Mac's audio line out?

    biggles.
    "illegitimis non carborundum"

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by biggles
    Gordon,

    does it still go wacka-wacka when you plug into the Mac's audio line out?

    biggles.
    It still goes wacka-wacka out of the speaker whenever any sound is played that uses the system sound, but only when it is booted in OSX. I assume that the wacka-ness is also propagated to the line out, but I don't use it.
    Gordon in Austin

  6. #6
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    Isn't there ANYBODY out there that has a clue what my prob is? It's making me, um, wacka-wacka-wacky.
    Gordon in Austin

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    BACKUP then you could toss all your sound files/prefs and re-run the 10.3.9 combo updater again. It fixed a 1+ year old ColorSync issue of mine. I am not a good "sound techy" just an iTunes user.

  8. #8
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    Audio is something I know zero about. But could it be some type of ground problem or feedback loop that only affects your equipment under OS X??

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by rwm
    BACKUP then you could toss all your sound files/prefs and re-run the 10.3.9 combo updater again. It fixed a 1+ year old ColorSync issue of mine. I am not a good "sound techy" just an iTunes user.

    Thanks, but I've already wiped and reformatted the drive with OSX on it and did a total reinstall, and it didn't change a thing.
    Gordon in Austin

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by TZ
    Audio is something I know zero about. But could it be some type of ground problem or feedback loop that only affects your equipment under OS X??
    Thanks, but I disconnected the Digi001 (ProTools interface) from the computer, which isolates it totally from my audio gear, and it didn't affect the prob.
    Gordon in Austin

  11. #11
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    About all I can think of is to check the Sound Pref pane, Sound Effects, and be sure that "Play user interface sound effects" is not checked. k

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by kaye
    About all I can think of is to check the Sound Pref pane, Sound Effects, and be sure that "Play user interface sound effects" is not checked. k
    Hmmmm, I remember seeing that option, but what does it mean?

    I'm pretty sure that I tried it both ways, but I'll definitely give it another look. Is there a connection that you know of between that and my wacka-wacka-wackiness?
    Gordon in Austin

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    Gordon,

    do you get wacka-wackiness with the start-up chime in OS X?

    I know it's shot in the dark, but have you tried an Open Firmware reset of NVRAM?

    I used to run the built-in audio out from the Mac through my 001, and still do with my 002R, can you do that, and if so do you still get wacka-wacka?

    biggles.
    "illegitimis non carborundum"

  14. #14
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    Just another wild guess, but "wacka-wacka-wacka-wacka" sounds like feedback in my head. Is there any way you could have an audio routing issue either with hardware or software?

    Sorry I can't be of more assistance, but I'm still in the novice stage of X.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by biggles
    Gordon,

    do you get wacka-wackiness with the start-up chime in OS X?

    I know it's shot in the dark, but have you tried an Open Firmware reset of NVRAM?

    I used to run the built-in audio out from the Mac through my 001, and still do with my 002R, can you do that, and if so do you still get wacka-wacka?

    biggles.

    The startup chime is fine, it's only after it's booted that the sound does that. No, I haven't done the Open Firmware reset, though I have zapped PRAM. Does the fact that the startup chime is normal have any bearing on your NVRAM suggestion?

    It's a dual boot machine, and I'm running PTLE on OS 9.2. It's been really stable for a long time, so I am really not wanting to upgrade PT to an OSX version. Is there a way to run the built in audio through my 001 even though PT is installed on the other boot disk and on OS9? I looked at the output device screen in System Preferences, and I didn't see the 001 as an option. I could install PT on the OSX disk as well so that the drivers would be in place, but mightn't it freak out with two installed versions of PT with the same authorization code?

    You asked about audio feedback. I'm sure that that's not the prob, but I have disconnected the 001 at the connector on the back of it, and the prob was still there.
    If you know analog synths, what it sounds like is if the output is going through a VCA with a 4 Hz sine wave on the control input. Whatever sound is generated goes from full off to full on 4 times/sec, hence wacka-wacka.
    Gordon in Austin

  16. #16
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    What I'm thinking is that if the startup chime sounds OK, and the fact that there's no wacka-wacka in OS9, then something is wrong in OS X. Sorry, that's stating the obvious. You've done a fresh install of OS X, so it probably isn't that. What's left? NVRAM. I don't know what or why anything in NVRAM might cause this (although I have my suspicions), but it seems to be the only thing as yet unaddressed.

    To reset NVRAM, restart and hold down the 4 keys Command-Option-o-f until you see the command-line screen. You are now booted in Open Firmware. After the Power On Self Test (which culminates in the chime) the Mac always boots first into OF, you just don't usually see it. Normally OF will now go about it's business of determining what devices are attached, load appropriate drivers (I think), find out which OS is to be launched (the one you selected in Startup Disk, and if I can't find it looks for any that will do), launches the OS and eventually hands everything over to the OS and toddles off for a bit of a lie down.

    As it is, after the above mentioned 4-finger restart, the process is stopped at the OF stage. You could now wreak all kinds havoc if you had a mind to, but let's just reset NVRAM to it's default condition.

    At the prompt type;

    reset-nvram (return)

    set-defaults (return)

    reset-all (return)

    The Mac will now restart, and will boot from the OS on the first drive on the native ATA bus. If you need to boot from another volume, hold down the option key after the chime and choose your poison. You may then have to reselect the startup disk in System Pref's. Like I said, this is a shot in the dark.

    As for running System sounds through the 001 to your monitor speakers, you don't need ProTools installed, nor even have the 001 turned on. And it won't appear in the Sound Pref's, you're not using Digidesign Core Audio here. You'll need a stereo cable with a 1/8" plug to 2xRCA phono plugs, and a pair of RCA-1/4" adapters. Gadget Shack has them, I'm sure. Run the cable from the audio line out on the back of the G4 to inputs 3&4 on the back of the 001. I assume that your 001 is connected to studio monitors. If you depress the Monitor Mode button on the front of the 001, the Mac's audio will be routed to the studio monitors. The 001 doesn't even need to be powered on. It's that simple.
    "illegitimis non carborundum"

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by ggunn
    You asked about audio feedback. I'm sure that that's not the prob, but I have disconnected the 001 at the connector on the back of it, and the prob was still there.
    Have you double-checked your software settings to make sure you haven't inadvertantly routed an output back to an input with play-through?

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by biggles

    As for running System sounds through the 001 to your monitor speakers, you don't need ProTools installed, nor even have the 001 turned on. And it won't appear in the Sound Pref's, you're not using Digidesign Core Audio here. You'll need a stereo cable with a 1/8" plug to 2xRCA phono plugs, and a pair of RCA-1/4" adapters. Gadget Shack has them, I'm sure. Run the cable from the audio line out on the back of the G4 to inputs 3&4 on the back of the 001. I assume that your 001 is connected to studio monitors. If you depress the Monitor Mode button on the front of the 001, the Mac's audio will be routed to the studio monitors. The 001 doesn't even need to be powered on. It's that simple.
    Thanks, but I tried that already. The wacka-wackiness is in the audio line out of the computer as well as in the built in speakers. I was hoping you meant I could use the PT drivers into the 001.
    Gordon in Austin

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by M.Brane
    Have you double-checked your software settings to make sure you haven't inadvertantly routed an output back to an input with play-through?
    When I am in OS9, my system works perfectly. I do a lot of recording and mixing down with ProTools in OS9. I do not run ProTools at all in OSX, and that's where the prob is.

    I am assuming that the software settings to which you refer are ProTools settings, but ProTools is never running when I have the problem (I don't even have PT for OSX installed). Also, I have disconnected the 001 by pulling the connector off the back (of the 001), and the problem is still there. If there are software settings that could cause this but which do not involve ProTools, please (PLEASE!) enlighten me.

    What I've got is amplitude modulation of my system sound; I don't think it's feedback. I've been doing audio engineering for a long time, and I've configured systems with circular audio paths many kinds of ways (and I have the hearing loss to prove it). This doesn't sound like any feedback I've ever heard.

    That said, I have no idea what you mean by "play-through". Is it a system setting?
    Gordon in Austin

  20. #20
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    Gordon,

    I haven't any more suggestions for the wacka-wacka problem, but I think this might be what you're looking for to use the 001 for audio in OS X without PTLE installed. I didn't ever use Core Audio with my 001, but use it all the time with the 002R. Whether it will work with the applications you want to use I can't say, and you can't use it to play Mac System sounds like beeps and alerts, but it works great for iTunes, Media Player, Real Player, QuickTime, &c.

    biggles.
    "illegitimis non carborundum"

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