Audio Clipping/ Distortion
"Audio Clipping/ Distortion" is the effect in which the amplitude of an audio sample exceeds the maximum peak playback level. (Sometimes also associated with or classified as over-modulation).
Audio Clipping/ Distortion impacts both the Content and Technical Quality of the Asset. The customer experience is negatively impacted by audio playback that may sound “crackly” or “fuzzy” due to decreased dynamic range. Typically not creatively intended, anything derived from this source will produce poor or unusable downstream audio deliverables.
A significant portion of the audio appears to peak above allowable playback levels. Audio sounds loud and over-modulated across music, dialogue, and/ or sound effects. Audio waveform appears extremely wide, but also “flattened out” across the peaks, indicating the audio is clipping.
How to Prevent:
Monitor audio levels closely on set in order to avoid recording over-modulated audio. During mixing stage, use limiters to avoid clipping.
May also be a normalization error. Review the re-recording mix session to verify if it occurred in the normalization process.
Adjust/ limit audio levels and redeliver a new print master. Check the M&E for the same issue, and redeliver M&E as well if necessary.