Question about mp3 editing

Hello Nuendo dudes …
I just “inherited” a job to edit and compile a load of mp3 session recordings from artist signed to the customers label. The job consists of about 100+ rather longish mp3 recordings. Those need to be cut into topic sections (song rehearsels) and are to be delivered back to the label, again in mp3 format.

I don’t want to import the mp3s into Nuendo or WaveLab which convert it into wav format and then render it back into mp3 format, which means a further thinning out of the original data, I suppose.
I wonder if somebody knows an efficient way, if there is any, at all, to skip conversions or avoid quality loss. Any other solutions are also welcome.

Cheers, Big K

Ooh, this is a tough one. I don’t think you can get past the conversion. If I were in your shoes, I would first do a test on an mp3. Import in then export and compare sonograms and do a null test to see if it is worth worrying about. Sonnox’s codec toolbox may be useful in this scenario too. This is if I was doing work on the actual audio (mastering/touchup/etc)

If all you are having to do is cut the files and do some fades, use Audacity. It supports mp3 and it’s free.
Can split without recoding.

AFAIK, you can’t edit mp3-files without first “uncompressing” them. I think that pplications that seem to do so without converting, actually do it in the background. Think about it in another way.
Assume that the compression algo drops out every other sample (in practice it is much more …).
So, in a 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 sequence, the samples 2, 4 , 6 and 8 are dropped, and recalculated during playback. (Remember that during playback the file is un-compressed too)
So, if yiy cut at sample 3, then there is no way samples 2 and 4 can be recalculated properly, it would result in “illegal” waveforms, which would cause clicks and bursts. So, IMO, it’s not possible.
Or differently put, to do it properly, you need to convert them back to .wav’s.


Mp3split can.

From what I can find out from the Mp3split documentation, this tool is splitting files at places where there is silence. I don’t see any mention of being able to cut/edit mp3 files in the middle of a audio stream.
I can be wrong, but for the moment, I stick with my above statement.


If you want to split an album, you can select split points and filenames manually or you can get them automatically from CDDB (internet or a local file) or from .cue files.

You must have missed this Fredo.

My point is that they are cutting where there is silence. That isn’t going to produce unwanted side-effects. Cutting within a song, or at least at a place where audio is playing, will most likely result in problems.

That being said, don’t know what Big K expects. If it’s only splitting files as described by Mp3split, then of course …


Thank you all for your friendly support.

Most of the few mp3 editors really do only split at silence which is fine for cutting 1-piece albums maybe downloaded from youtube, etc. What I have here has scarcely any silent moments… Maybe when they all take a sip from their beers :wink:

I’ll try this mp3DirectCut, maybe it does what I need…
I had just a little hope to find a way to do it in Nuendo or WL.
Would be a nice feature to have in Nuendo or WaveLab, though.

Thanks again…
Big K

On OS X there’s fission.