FLAC Multichannel (5.1, Surround) export does not work in WL9.1

I like WL9, but I hate it when I’m doing surround. I miss a lot of things that WL6 has (DVD-A with menus etc.). But WL6 cannot do FLAC export.

So I thought it would be a good idea to load WL6 montages into WL9. This works if you erase all text & picture tracks and
resave your montage in V9 format. The project I’m actually working has 2.0 and 5.1. I use two montage sets.

In WL9 I could export stereo FLAC, 24 bit, everything is fine without metadata. Although there is a lot of information in the montage,
marker named and so on there are no tags written. Ok, I do it manually (costs some time).

But: If I export the 5.1 montage to FLAC, it is only stereo. I’ve chosen “Multichannel”!
Ok, here is the workaround: export the files as multichannel WAV and convert them externally (costs a lot of time again, because is did not work with 24 bit actually).

This is bothering and makes me sometimes :imp: .

The good thing is, I could finish my work using some workarounds.

PS: Using WL 9.1. I would update for more surround capabilities.

The good thing is, I could finish my work using some workarounds.

Unfortunatley my workaround does not work correctly. No one else having this problem? :question: :question: :question:

I agree Wavelab should support this, but, in the meantime:

What part of your workaround doesn’t work? Something to do with 24 bit? If it has to do with 32f, FLAC doesn’t support floating point afaik.

Foobar, MediaHuman, Wave Agent, and Audacity all convert 5.1 multichannel WAV to multichannel FLAC, with or without metadata, if I recall correctly (I might be mistaken about one or another). And they’re all Free.

Or, you have Cubase and Nuendo. Do they not do this convert?

I guess I’m wrong about Wave Agent. Not finding a way to convert to FLAC with that. But the others should be fine. MediaHuman and Foobar are especially easy, but Audacity requires an Export settings change in Preferences.

Could I ask … out of genuine interest … what the application for this would be? That is FLAC rather than BWF

Hi Rat. I don’t know what MikeWK’s specific need is (hopefully he’ll describe it), but to me it’s more of a “why not”, if FLAC is available for stereo, why not multichannel. There are free swiss-army knife programs like Foobar (Windows), XLD (Mac), and MediaHuman (Win and Mac) that convert back and forth nearly every file format and configuration, with automatic (or configurable) tag mapping (!) for all different metadata types, and WAV handling for RIFF and ID3.

Wavelab has an incredible metadata section, but doesn’t deal with certain things that have been requested, like full support for AIFF and ALAC metadata and more multichannel support. I just don’t understand how these Free programs can handle virtually ‘everything’, including legacy AIFF and ALAC with metadata which would always be needed for restoration from certain archives, etc. Yet Wavelab can’t.

I don’t think Wavelab is alone among DAWs in this respect, but even so, these FREE programs do it all somehow.

Yes. ProTools, for example offers no support for FLAC … it won’t even import it (requires conversion to BWF). In PT land, it’s been suggested that the reason for lack of support generally revolves around legal ramifications to inserting GNU or BSD code into a paid for program. It’s not my field.

Thanks for the info Paul. I didn’t know that FLAC, or just anything GNU, was controversial. I thought it was only about MP3.

Hello everybody, meanwhile I converted my wavs using foobar. I had to configure foobar to 24bit and not autodetect. Audacity can convert wav to flac too? I’ll give it a try.

But: everything looks configured right in wavelab, got no warning, it simply does not work correct. This is what I hate. You try hours for hours getting not the result that you expect.

I produced an “old fashioned and outdated” DVD-A from an older project and want to have 4424, 5.1 flacs for media players too.

Because threre is no affordable (and available) solution for making highres and multichannel discs I’ve to stick with the combination WL6+WL9(+foobar).
But this is a different topic.

How to configure Audacity for 5.1 output? Seems that it does not work, so I stick with foobar + ASIO.

For the conversion part, you might want to try MediaHuman audio converter. It’s by far the easiest, it’s on Windows and Mac, and it’s Free. Easy to convert multiple multichannel wav files with metadata to multichannel flac files with metadata in one go. But no multichannel playback afaik.

Audacity works converting multichannel wav to multichannel flac, but you need to go into the Audacity Preferences first and change the Export preferences so they’re not restricted to stereo export. Then convert files one by one I believe, so it’s not nearly as easy as Media Human, unless I’m missing something. But you’re right, no multichannel playback there either afaik.

Ok, 1.5 years later I found out that WL 9.5 isn’t capable to export multichannel from my DVD-A 5.1 montage. Not flac nor wav.
WL10 can do that. And the montage could be loaded. Progress! Good.

Bad: If I try to preview those exported wav-files using WL’s browser, WL10 crashes. WL9.5 does play them. And flac too.
https://www.steinberg.net/forums/viewtopic.php?f=297&t=195957

It could be so easy…

I gu’ess it doesn’t matter if you’re not using 9.5 anymore, but Wavelab 9.5.40 can export to a multichannel wav file with metadata from a 5.1 montage (flac I don’t think works correctly. I only get stereo result with multichannel output file format selected with flac). But with wav, select “multichannel” in the file format selection in the render and it should work properly.

post_id=1034724 time=1597618898 user_id=2390]
Ok, 1.5 years later I found out that WL 9.5 isn’t capable to export multichannel from my DVD-A 5.1 montage. Not flac nor wav.

And I get the same result trying to export to a single multichannel 5.1 flac file in Wavelab 10 (with “multichannel” file format selected). The result is a single stereo file, so that’s not correct here. Are you getting a correct single file 5.1 multichannel flac render in Wavelab 10, because I’m not.

I would still use MediaHuman in the meantime to convert the 5.1 wav file to 5.1 flac. I believe it translates the wav metadata to flac metadata automatically as well, if you need metadata in the conversion.

I didn’t try. Because I didn’t expect it that it would work. So I do the conversion manually after export. If the export works.

I guess my point was there’s no progress in Wavelab 10 because you can export multichannel wav in Wavelab 9.5 too. (but flac in neither).

And that makes Wavelab 10 worse than Wavelab 9.5.

Here is what the manual tells us about file formats:
https://steinberg.help/wavelab_pro/v10/en/wavelab/topics/audio_files_editing/supported_file_formats_c.html?hl=audio%2Cfile%2Cformat
“WaveLab Pro can open and save audio files in a number of file formats.”

“FLAC (.flac)

Free Lossless Audio Codec (FLAC) is a codec which allows digital audio to be losslessly compressed.”

It will be really great if it works like shown in the manual.