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Unplayable audio files

Posted: Tue Mar 07, 2017 1:54 pm
by w9wi
Anyone run into what claims to be a .WAV file but won't play except in the proprietary software that created it?

I have a data CD with a number of .WAV files. I've tried iTunes, QuickTime, Windows Media Player, and VLC. None will play it. Most say "unsupported" -- VLC says it's 23 seconds long but if you click Play absolutely nothing happens. Information says it's an AAC file.

MediaInfo says it's a 566KB 4:49 Wave file. It says the bitrate is 16kb, two channels, 8KHz sampling -- but a bit depth of 1. The Format and Codec ID are both 2222. (they should be alphabetical... maybe if the bit depth is 1, Codec 2222 means Morse?)

I've tried renaming it to .aac and to .m4a without success.

I hate to install YET ANOTHER proprietary program on someone's computer but it's looking like there's no other way to play this thing.

I know some of you other TV guys have run into this before with surveillance video. Almost always I can trick VLC into playing it -- and then converting to something our Avid editors can import. Would never imagine I would be stymied by an *audio* file.

Re: Unplayable audio files

Posted: Tue Mar 07, 2017 5:29 pm
by davek
Any chance of making a file available.. ?

Re: Unplayable audio files

Posted: Tue Mar 07, 2017 8:12 pm
I know you don't want to use any more software, but have you tried Audacity?

Re: Unplayable audio files

Posted: Tue Mar 07, 2017 8:41 pm
by w9wi
Due to the nature of the content I can't make a sample available. (more than anything else I'm just venting:) , our newspeople sometimes seem to think "a file is a file is a file, why can't we play everything the police give us?" I think some of these security vendors are trying to lock in their customers. Using obscurity to ensure if they change vendors, they won't be able to play any of their old recordings..)

Good ponit, about Audacity. I'll give it a shot tomorrow. I don't have a problem with using open-source tools (that's why I was messing with VLC) -- they generally work well and many of them are reputable & trustworthy. (VLC and Audacity certainly fall in that category) I'm just not wanting our people to have a dozen or two proprietary players of unknown heritage overwriting each other's DLLs:(

Re: Unplayable audio files

Posted: Tue Mar 07, 2017 9:06 pm
by ChuckG
Are those the original files, or did someone attempt to "help out" and incorrectly convert the native file fomat to WAV before giving you the disk?

Re: Unplayable audio files

Posted: Wed Mar 08, 2017 4:44 pm
by Lee_Wheeler
I have a whole server full of them but that was after the crypto-lock malware attack that the stations got hit with a few years ago.


Re: Unplayable audio files

Posted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 7:36 am
Maybe they are mpeg L2 files?

Re: Unplayable audio files

Posted: Wed Mar 15, 2017 10:36 pm
by Shane
ENCO Systems uses mpeg2 files but with the .WAV extension notable for it being all caps.

I have two methods to play these if that's what they are. One is to use Open Audio from Video in Adobe Audition 1.5 under the File dropdown. (Later versions may have a different method.)

2nd method is to convert the file to a real .wav file (complete with lower case extension) using something like dBpowerAmp which can still be found for free.

I found that dBpowerAmp does a better job of converting mpeg2's and can handle either those with .WAV extensions plus those with the non-standard .mp2 extension which programs on the Ambassador delivery system insist upon inflicting on us.

Since you are not sure yet what this is, if you use dBpowerAmp be sure to save the resultant file to a different directory or rename it. If you convert it back to the same directory and the only name change is from *.WAV to*.wav, it will overwrite the original although it will give you a chance to recognize that and divert if necessary.

Now, don't'cha know when I went to demonstrate the inferior quality of Adobe's conversion to a new employee it didn't do what it usually does. The conversion was no different from poweramp. Sometimes those computers just like to make a monkey out of ya.

Re: Unplayable audio files

Posted: Thu Mar 16, 2017 6:05 am
by w9wi
It's become a moot point -- I had to ignore them for awhile & go work on the EAS box & they weren't willing to wait that long.

Re: Unplayable audio files

Posted: Thu Mar 16, 2017 7:27 am
Time wounds all heels.