How does SoundStreak Work?
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Support & Download
Currently, we are offering limited email support. Before emailing, please check the FAQ below,
which we will be updating frequently with solutions to common issues.
To download SoundStreak, use the link to the right. Remember, you need a SoundStreak
account to start a session, if you don't have one yet, just fill out the form on the homepage. If you have any other questions, please email SoundStreak
- Can I use the Mac and Windows software together in the same session?
- Yes, SoundStreak is fully inter-operable between platforms.
- What does SoundStreak™ cost?
- The software itself is free, for both producers and talent, and can be installed on as many machines as you’d like. For now, SoundStreak is free for anyone to use. When we enable billing, producers will pay a flat fee per session using “tokens” purchased online from SoundStreak. Using SoundStreak is always free for talent.
- What kind of computer do I need?
- SoundStreak runs on Mac OS and Windows. Any laptop or desktop with OSX 10.6.5 (Snow Leopard) or newer, or Windows 7 or newer can run our software.
- Do I need a broadband connection?
- Yes. SoundStreak requires an active internet connection to establish a session. Any consumer broadband offering should be sufficient – we recommend at least 300 Kb/sec upload speed. SoundStreak only creates outbound connections so it works well with corporate LANs. Upload speed of the Talent connection will determine the time required to transfer takes. Very low bandwidth may impact audio quality of Voice Patch, but will have no effect on the audio quality of the actual takes.
- What sound formats does SoundStreak support?
- SoundStreak records in uncompressed AIFF, WAV or BWF. At the beginning of each session the producer can select the recording format as well as the resolution or sampling rate (from 44.1kHz to 96kHz in 16 or 24 bit encoding.)
- What if I don’t know what audio format/resolution to record?
- In most cases, the editor/mixer will convert any type of audio file you deliver. If you would like to know for certain, ask a technician involved in your project. This could be an editor, a mixer or an engineer. A commonly used recording setting is 48kHz 16 bit AIFF.
- What video formats does SoundStreak support?
- SoundStreak supports any file handled by QuickTime, including .AVI, .MOV and many others. You can also use Windows Media Video (WMV) files by downloading the Flip4Mac plug-in.
- I’m a producer, what equipment do I need?
- No special equipment is required; you can use nearly any recent, Apple computer with a consumer broadband connection or better (see What kind of computer do I need? and Do I need a broadband connection? above). To use Voice Patch you will need a USB headset (such as you would use for Skype) or microphone and headset – we do not recommend using internal mic or speakers on laptops, as this causes feedback and other problems. To evaluate the production audio you have recorded, you may want higher quality speakers or headphones.
- Can I use WiFi?
- Yes. However, a wired/LAN connection is often faster, and should be used when possible.
- I’m a voice actor, what equipment do I need?
- If you have a home studio, all you need is a computer accessible from your sound booth (See What kind of computer do I need? above). You will need to situate your computer’s screen so it is visible while you perform. Care should be taken to assure noise from the computer can’t reach the mic. Contact us if you need help setting up your computer. Most home studio sound capture devices are compatible with SoundStreak.
If you don’t have a home studio, creating one is easier and and more affordable than you might think. Contact us and we’ll help you plan a home studio that fits your needs. Once you have a home studio you’ll be able to take advantage of the many benefits SoundStreak offers talent.
- Can I use my existing Blue, DigiDesign, M-Audio, Delta, Presonus, MOTU, Mackie or other sound capture equipment with SoundStreak?
- In most cases yes. SoundStreak has been tested with many professional audio interfaces, and we have found no compatibility issues. If you are having trouble with your device, we’d like to hear from you with details, both so we can help you solve your problem and so we can learn how to make SoundStreak even better.
- Can I use a USB Microphone?
- Absolutely. A variety of quality USB microphones are available at a range of prices, and are the most affordable way to set up a quality home studio.
- How many tracks does SoundStreak support?
- SoundStreak currently supports a single backing track (an audio or video file) and mono recording of takes in both capture and playback. A mixer controls the relative volume of each track.
- I’m a producer, but the talent I want to use does not have SoundStreak installed. What should I do?
- Anyone can set up a SoundStreak account and download and install our software for free. In most cases, existing home studio setups are quite easily adapted to include SoundStreak, and we are happy to help your talent get up and running. SoundStreak requires no knowledge of the software for Talent to use – they simply accept an invitation, adjust their input level, and perform – so Talent can be up and running very quickly.
- As a producer, how are my video / audio backing assets secured?
- All transfers in the SoundStreak system are done over secure SFTP connections. Each SoundStreak user has his or her own secure Asset Manager on our server, accessible only by logging in as Production with your private password. Backing assets are downloaded from your asset manager to both the Talent and Production computers during sessions, and are deleted from all local machines immediately upon use. Backing assets cannot be saved outside of SoundStreak, even from the asset manager – so there is no danger of your asset “making it into the wild.”
- Can the producer work with multiple voice actors or singers simultaneously?
- Not yet, although we’re investigating this feature. Check our web site for developments.
- Can the talent record without the producer?
- No. This is planned for future releases.
- Does SoundStreak provide a file back-up service?
- All takes (those selected for transfer) are archived on our server as they are transferred during sessions. You can retrieve these takes easily – or provide a third party access to one or more individual takes via the links included in the Session Summary email you receive at the end of each session. Note that these links are not currently password protected – it is your responsibility to share them carefully.
Of course, copies of all takes remain on the Talent computer (in the Take folder) until they are manually deleted. Similarly, all transferred takes remain in the Production computer’s Take folder until deleted. In both cases, the Take folder’s location is set by the user (default is Documents/SoundStreak Audio Files), and can be opened with the “Take Folder” button in the main screen of the application.
- My Voice Patch connection sounds bad – what can I do?
- First, rest assured that no matter how bad Voice Patch quality is, takes are being captured on the Talent machine with uncompromised quality. The Voice Patch is primarily for communicating during and between takes, and has nothing to do with capturing takes.
Bad audio quality on your Voice Patch is almost always caused by one of two things. If the “upload” speed of your broadband connection is below 300 Kb/sec, it can impact the quality of the voice patch. If the quality degrades further when takes are being transferred, your connection speed is likely the culprit. Try closing other applications you might have open on your computer, and check to if anyone else on your local network is using bandwidth. Applications within the home (for example TiVo, or media servers) can also impact connection quality.
The other culprit in such situations is usually speakers and microphones. Use of speakers (rather than a headset) when Voice Patch is un-muted can create feedback loops and other problems. Try muting your speakers, or plugging in a headset. Internal microphones on laptops are also often problematic.
- Why do I hear different levels of audio quality at different times?
- SoundStreak uses three levels of audio quality during a session. Each is intended to achieve a different balance between efficiency (bandwidth requirement) and audio quality. Voice-patch is streaming audio, and quality may vary because of bandwidth and other factors. When a take is completed, a low-resoluton version is transferred to Production automatically for review of the performance. This version is optimized for speed of transfer by reducing the sampling rate and bit depth; to avoid confusion, Talent hears this reduced version when Production does. Finally, the transferred takes are optimized for quality regardless of how long it takes to transfer them; when Production has received a transferred take both Talent and Production will hear noticeably higher audio quality during playback.
The important thing is that takes — your final output — are never compressed, streamed or compromised in any way.
- What is the maximum length of a SoundStreak recording
- SoundStreak can record a take of any length. But very long takes and take a long time to upload and you can not exit SoundStreak until your takes have been uploaded.
- I'm hearing latency in my audio path / "Mute Cue Track" Explained
- If your mic and headphones are not connected to the same device (for instance, if you use an independent preamp and/or a headphone amplifier for playback), you may hear distracting latency in your headphones during reads. To address this possibility, SoundStreak includes the ability to mute the audio path from your mic back to your headphones (the "Cue Track"). This function mutes only the path from the mic to your headphones - backing audio is fed to your headphones regardless of whether the Cue Track is muted, and you will always be able to hear Production over the built-in voice patch.
- My Voice Patch connection doesn't work — What can I do?
Some countries block Voice over IP—Voice Patch. They do this in order to prevent bypassing local telecom taxes. The built-in Voice Patch connection feature of SoundStreak will NOT work in these countries (listed below). All other features of SoundStreak will still work—including recording and uploading takes—but in order to communicate with the other user you will have to use a standard telephone line.
If you, or the person you are running a session with, is in one of the countries marked "Partial", VoIP may work depending on your location and/or connection.
- China (partial)
- Mexico (partial)
- My mic doesn't allow input/output control in my Mac's preferences. What should I do?
There are some interfaces and USB mics that don't let you control the input and/or output level from the preferences in your Mac. In such cases, the level controls in SoundStreak and in the Mac control panel should be greyed out. For these devices, you must set your input and output levels directly from your microphone or your interface.
- Which text formats are supported by SoundStreak for the script feature?
SoundStreak currently accepts .txt files. However, in addition to typing in the text directly in SoundStreak, you may copy and paste any text into the script area in the software and it will convert it to the proper format.
- Which video and audio formats are supported by SoundStreak as backing assets?
SoundStreak uses QuickTime to display backing assets and therefore supports files that can be played back by QuickTime installed on the machine where the SoundStreak application is running. SoundStreak supports the following file types and codecs:Video:
We have not tested SoundStreak with other file formats, and therefore cannot guarantee that they work with our software. We invite you to report issues and/or request support of additional file types.