BWF Import fails.

farss wrote on 4/1/2010, 2:55 PM
I have created a 4 channel wave file out of Vegas and opened that in the latest version of Wave Agent Beta. Using that I set a frame rate and start timecode. I then saved the file, exited Wave Agent, restarted Wave Agent, opened the file and all metadata is as I had saved it.

I then opened Vegas 9.0b and attempted to do an Import>BWF File. Went through all the steps however once Vegas went to do the import I got a "The selected files are not of type BWF" error. The file still loads as a wav file into Vegas perfectly.

The only piece of metadata Wave agent shows as missing and will not let me edit and might possibly be required is Timecode Sample Rate. I'm assuming this would relate to a BWF file with LTC. As Vegas does not read LTC anyway I'm at a loss to see how this would have any bearing on the matter. I also tried changing the file extension to BWF but this made no difference to Vegas's rejection of the file.

I did some extensive Googling trying to find another utility to convert a wave file to BWF but came up empty handed.

Many have recommended Wave Agent as a workaround to Vegas's inability to create a BWF file. My only way of actually testing this process indicates that does not work.



rraud wrote on 4/1/2010, 4:51 PM
A B'cast Wave File does not carry LTC, (at least not in the metadata) and as we know, Vegas cannot read LTC, nor does WA. Which version of Wave Agent are you using? The beta Wave Agent had issues with some renders. I don't know if they fixed it. I'll check it out. If not, I used to have a work-around. I just need a few minutes (and a few drinks) to recall the workflow parameters.
musicvid10 wrote on 4/1/2010, 5:17 PM
We were kind of hoping you'd jump in here. There's a new WaveAgent release, and I don't know if that or something else is the cause of Bob's observation. I don't recall having the problem with the Beta and Vegas 9.0c, but I'm going to try some things.

The background discussion is here:
farss wrote on 4/1/2010, 6:01 PM
"Which version of Wave Agent are you using?"

Version 1.10, recently released.

rraud wrote on 4/2/2010, 9:37 AM
Wave Agent 1.10 (still called "Beta" for some reason) does the same thing. It will not create the proper chunk info from a standard WAVE file for importing into Vegas I have not tried Wave Agent Classic yet. (whatever the difference is)
My work-around: Copy and open a known BWF in SF and replace the original audio with the audio you wish to use. Save the file, making sure the "Save Metadata" box is checked. Import into Wave Agent. make the desired metadata changes. Change or fill in the frame rate and uncheck the "Preserve TC start" when editing the TC start.
PS:-- I did not try poly files with more than 2-tracks.

If you need a BWF template file to work from: (1.5MB)
Note: file expires on 04/09/10. Contact me directly after that.

PPS:- Even a file created with an H2 has the proper BWF metadata to work with.

musicvid10 wrote on 4/2/2010, 10:08 AM
This may shed a little more light on the problem:

I downloaded a BWF sample file from SD's website. It imported just right in Vegas at the right spot on the timeline. So far, so good.

I then took a standard wave file, edited the metadata in WaveAgent, and was not able to import in Vegas, but was OK to drag to the timeline, but without the T/C offset, of course.

I compared the metadata for the two files in WaveAgent, and found nothing significantly different. WaveAgent does not display the chunk data, however.

I downloaded the trial version of BWFWidget Pro, which is kind of neat in the amount of stuff it will tell you, and compared the chunk data between the two files. Again, nothing obvious that should break Vegas,

I then noticed that the chunk order in the WaveAgent file was reversed from the reference BWF file; the bext chunk was last in line (after the wav chunks) as opposed to appearing first in the reference file.

Does Vegas expect to see the bext chunk first and only first in line? If so, is it the only app that has this limitation?

I have no way of knowing, just speculating, because neither of the utilities (WaveAgent or BWFWidget) has a way to re-order the chunks. But my speculation makes sense in light of rraud's observation that if you paste new material into an existing bwf and save with metadata, it preverves the chunk order and data of the original.

Then again, I could be full of beans.
EDIT: Just stumbled across the thread here:
This could breathe some life into my theory because something similar seems to affect ProTools. Especially interesting are the last two posts which suggest "fixing" the chunk order in Sound Forge.

I could be on to something. More to come . . .
rraud wrote on 4/2/2010, 6:44 PM
You ARE on to something MV, makes sense. I appreciate your tenacity.
farss wrote on 4/3/2010, 3:42 AM
I got it to work. Took your sample BWF file then in SF10 converted the bitdepth to 24 bits then used the channel converter to convert to 4 channels. Then deleted all. Opened my ex Vegas 4 chan wave file, selected all, pasted into BWF and saved with Preserve Metadata ticked. The order is important as SF will not do anything to an empty timeline.

Opened that in WaveAgent, changed frame rate to 25 and changed Start Time. Save that and exited.

Opened V9.0b, File>Import>BWF and it worked. One thing to watch for, make certain the Ruler matches project frame rate. The Import seems to use ruler time to position the event, I had that wrong at first and got a few frames offset.

Vegas appears to ignore track names from the BWF file. Not a huge problem I guess.

Good luck getting someone from Sony HQ to understand you. Hard to find anyone who even knows Vegas exists.

musicvid10 wrote on 4/3/2010, 9:05 AM
I can also confirm that the workaround from rraud works.
For those still interested, I have sent the following support email to Sound Devices (only because I suspect they will respond more quickly than Sony).
First of all, I really apologize for sending a support ticket for a free product.

Geoff_Wood wrote on 4/3/2010, 4:56 PM
Well, if the proplem affects not only V but also PT, is it not possible that the problem is in fact in WA ? (Sorry my understanding of bexts and other metadata is not deep).

musicvid10 wrote on 4/3/2010, 5:14 PM
Not really, Geoff. In the first BWF spec the chunk order was specified (according to other posts on the internet), but was dropped long ago; it is not specified in the current specs. Although placing the bext chunk last is unusual, it should be recognized by any program that claims BWF import support.

That being said, it would probably be easier to fix in Sound Device's WaveAgent than in Sony and DigiDesign. That is, if my theory is correct; it is supported although unproven at this point.
musicvid10 wrote on 4/5/2010, 11:23 AM
I got the following responses from Sound Devices today:
Joe Ramos said:
Unfortunately this does sound like a Vegas issue. Any application that can read .wav files should be able to look at the various chunks in any order and have it work fine. We don't have any plans at the moment to change the way Wave Agent saves edited files, however our engineering department is going to have a look at this and do some tests with Vegas. We will investigate whether their is an issue on our end or not.
Nic Stage said:
I know Joe already responded to you, but I was just wondering what version(s) of Vegas you were seeing this in? We can forward this over to our contacts at Sony to help them out too. :)
I responded to him that this had been confirmed in 8.0c and 9.0b.
rraud wrote on 4/6/2010, 8:21 AM
Same behavior in Vegas 6.
SonyMLogan wrote on 4/6/2010, 2:00 PM
I just took a look at this issue in the latest vegas codebase. The issue is not the relative location of the bext chunk! We are properly loading the chunk wherever it appears in the file. The issue is that Vegas craps out when it sees that the OriginationDate or OriginationTime fields are set to NULL.

I will admit that Vegas could be more tolerant of this situation, but I would also suggest that if any app is going to add a BEXT chunk, it should also add the OriginationDate and OriginationTime fields, setting them to the current date and time by default.

Late update:

I just got off the phone with Joe Ramos @ Sound Devices and informed him of my findings. It sounds like they may add a default OriginationDate/Time to files edited in wave agent to address the problem. Thanks for posting the topic here. If there are any other BWF issues you'd like Vegas to address, please post them on the forum!