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I recorded a few tracks in Ableton Live for a client, then exported them so he could have a friend pitch correct them using Melodyne. After getting the tracks back and importing them into Ableton Live, the waveforms look very different compared to other tracks:

weird waveforms on imported tracks

The top two tracks are imported and the bottom two are ones I recorded myself.

In addition, if I try to play one of these tracks, I hear a very loud sound and then all sound cuts out. If I reload the project and mute the problem tracks the mix plays normally.

The files I imported sound fine when I play them back in macOS Finder. I tried using Ableton Live's Utility plugin to solve the problem by clicking on "DC" in case there was a DC offset issue but this did not appear to fix anything.

I also tried importing the tracks into a new Live project. They played back without cutting out all sound but adjusting the clip or track volume seemed to have no effect. It sounds like someone turned the volume all the way up on a cheap sound system when it plays back.

What exactly is going on here? How can I fix this issue?

  • is there a way of recreating or reimporting the tracks so that the waveforms are re-generated? – Mark Mar 2 at 7:32
  • @Mark hey I tried deleting the auto-generated waveform files but Live just recreates them as is 😕 – intcreator Mar 2 at 14:41
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    Is it possible that they are coming back from Melodyne in a different format? i.e. different endianness, different bit resolution etc? – Mark Mar 3 at 0:12
  • Actually, why don't you post both tracks. One before going through melodyne and one after coming back from Melodyne. I think there is a corruption issue possibly. – Mark Mar 3 at 0:13
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    I notice the irony in your username too.... ;-) – Mark Mar 9 at 11:46
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I suspect that you have an issue with the sample format in the incoming file. WAV files are able to contain a number of different sample values, including different bit-resolutions of integer and double (32-bit float) or quad-precision (64-bit) float representations of samples.

Ensure that the sample format that you are using is compatible with the DAW, if not - check and convert the file to a compatible format.

  • In my particular case it was bit depth/bit resolution, but all of these things are good to look out for. – intcreator Mar 9 at 15:33

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