Rendering Audio Files from DDP image

Why does Wavelab render Audio files from a DDP image as 32-bit files when they are actually 16-bit files? I have enabled the setting “Match Source File” before rendering but it still renders as 32-bit.
I had the same problem with Wavelab 8 & that is one of the main reasons I upgraded to 9 - thinking that surely this bug would be fixed.
Any help would be greatly appreciated…

Hi,

If you check with Bit Meter does it show 32 bit float or 16 bit
when WL read a DDP image back ?

regards S-EH

I just checked on this and I’d say it’s somewhere between a bug and a user error, but possibly should be fixed by WaveLab though I don’t know how WaveLab could distinguish between a loaded DDP that is untouched and a montage that has processing involved which would increase the bit-depth to 32-bit floating point.

I imported a DDP I had already rendered, then told WaveLab to render WAV files of each CD track and for the bit resolution in the format edit I chose “match source file”. Sure enough, the rendered WAV files are 32-bit files by name but the audio in the files is still 16-bit if checked with the bit-meter as you would expect.

I guess I’ve never seen this issue because all of my format presets will force the bit resolution to be where I want it. I only use “match input stream” for sample rate and channels but I always specify a bit-depth in my presets instead of using “match source file”. I have one for 16-bit, 24-bit, 32-bit float and few different mp3 and AAC codecs.

I guess for now, maybe make a Format preset in the Render Ribbon Tab that has 16-bit resolution selected and it should be OK.

Maybe PG can explain why “match source file” when rendering from DDP results in a 32-bit WAV file even though the audio is still 16-bit as expected. My guess is that it’s a slight oversight because the montage is really bit agnostic at 32-bit float processing. I’m actually trying to think of a time when the input stream of a montage wouldn’t be 32-bit technically because you actually can’t determine the bit-depth of a montage, only an audio file.

It might just one of those weird points of confusion. I think it’s best practice to have a preset for the bit-depth you want rather than rely on “match source file”.

Shows as 16-Bit…

Thanks for the feedback Justin, from now on I’ll just do what you suggested & select the appropriated bit rate manually instead of relying on “match source file”.
It’s a bit of extra work having to check the bit rate & then manually select it but it’s not the end of the world I suppose…

Read my above post but I think the discrepancy here is the term “match source file”. A montage is bit agnostic so in other words, you can’t create a 16-bit montage, it is always a 32-bit floating point montage and you dither to the desired bit-depth and tell WaveLab so save at that desired bit-depth in the Format section of the render dialogue.

So, it’s not a big surprise to me that this setting causes a 32-bit float WAV file since technically speaking, the montage is 32-bit, even though you have imported a DDP image that is 16-bit.

The “match source file” setting is likely more useful when rendering from audio files and not so much from montages which are bit agnostic and work at 32-bit floating point.

I think the best solution is to make a format preset with the bit-resolution to 16-bit, and use then when you want to render 16-bit WAV files from the montage. You can do the same for 24-bit and 32-bit floating point and use any dither modules as needed of course.

It shouldn’t really be any extra work if you use a few presets. If I want to render to 16-bit, I use my 16-bit preset which can be called up by clicking the little icon to the right of the Format field and pressing “1”, or if I need to render 24-bit, I just click the icon and press “2”. The little line under a character in the preset name means that after pressing the icon to see your presets, you can press a keyboard shortcut to load it. After a little time, you start to memorize those and it’s even faster.

Maybe take a minute to make presets for all the different bit-depths you normally use and from there, it should be 1 click and one key press and you’re there.

See the attached screen shots for a few preset settings examples.
ALL.png
24.png
16.png

Agreed however I’m talking about DDP’s I get from other people where I don’t know what the bit-depth is - that’s why it would be a little extra work…

Interesting. I’d have to do some testing but I assumed that the DDP format itself was restricted to 16-bit. I do know Sonic Solutions SoundBlade offers a DDP-like format that allows you to send a DDP-like file to clients in a higher resolution 24-bit/96k for example but I’m not sure if it’s considered true DDP or if WaveLab would even open it.

Either way, I don’t think it’s bad to confirm what the bit-depth of the source material is before saving it to make sure you’re not truncating or improperly dithering.

As a test, I just rendered a DDP from a montage with no dithering and the imported DDP audio still shows at 16-bit (truncated of course). I guess I’m not sure how you can receive a DDP with audio above 16-bit but I’d be curious to know.

Why does Wavelab render Audio files from a DDP image as 32-bit files when they are actually 16-bit files? I have enabled the setting “Match Source File” before rendering but it still renders as 32-bit.
I had the same problem with Wavelab 8 & that is one of the main reasons I upgraded to 9 - thinking that surely this bug would be fixed.

An Audio Montage is always a 32 bit float “container”. It might reference 16 bit files, 24 bit files, 32 bit Float files, etc. But all these files are streamed to 32 bit float, which is the format required for processing.
When you import a DDP, the DDP is read as 16 bit (always), but the montage keeps its 32 bit nature. As soon as you would add any plugin or, even more simply, add some minor clip gain, you enter the 32 bit float stream world. That is, the output samples loose their 16 resolution.

IOW, the behaviour you describe is normal and expected.

It’s interesting they call it a DDP because I thought the same, that DCA required the audio file in an Audio DDP to be 44.1 16 bit. (but maybe that’s not the case.) But you can only make a 16bit DDP in Wavelab or any other program afaik.

But you can make a hi-res image file in Wavelab if you render to CUE that contains all the same information as a DDP, and it’s readable in many programs.

But it would be interesting to know if Wavelab could simply make the audio file in a DDP to 96k 24bit and have the DDP be legal and readable in any other programs.

The DDP secure player in Soundblade to send to clients also seems a nice feature instead of using 3rd party, but the player limited to Mac is a major disadvantage there.

I can’t be certain they still call the hi-res versions a DDP, as I’ve never used SoundBlade, but maybe they do. I have often thought that a way to send clients a higher resolution than 16-bit/44.1k with a special player would be good but I’ve become OK with sending clients a standard DDP with HOFA DDP Player embedded. It works great, Mac or PC. I am a big Mac user but there is no way I could expect all my clients to be on Mac so that Sonic Player would not be useable to me.