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Loud "pop" when changing MP3 tracks
post Oct 7 2011, 03:26
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Joined: 7-October 11
Member No.: 94193

Hello all,

New guy here.

Recently I've discovered that on specific tracks, when the song is changing, there would be a loud "pop". The problem exhibits when one track has finished playing and the next track is automatically loaded. This does not happen if I change the tracks manually by pressing the FF key. For example, the Track 3 would have finished playing, and the moment Track 4 is loaded, a loud "pop" is transmitted through my earphones.

I have checked the files (Track 3 and 4 in my example) both with Audacity on Linux and MP3DirectCut on Windows XP. There are no frequency spikes which would indeed indicate that the "pop" is somewhere "between" the two tracks.

The solution is actually very simple: Using MP3DirectCut, I remove a tiny bit of audio (less than one second) at the end of the preceding track (Track 3 in my example). Just like that, no more loud "pop" sound.

Now. It is important to note that as of now, this problem exists only on my portable MP3 player. The same tracks, tested either on RhythmBox (Linux) or foobar2000 (Windows XP), do not have that "pop" in between.

I believe that it is of equal, if not more, importance that the tracks have been gained down using MP3Gain. The original volume would be at around 98dB and they have all been gained to around 89dB (MP3Gain default).

The tracks were ripped from legit Canadian HMV CDs using dBpoweramp CD Ripper to FLAC. The FLAC is then converted to MP3, also using dBpoweramp. Lastly, MP3Gain is applied, and the tracks transferred to my MP3 player.

I have a total of 688 tracks, all processed with the above procedure. To date, I only find 2 cases of "pop". One of them has a pop only in the right channel while the other has a much louder pop in both channels.

...Which basically leads me to two questions:
1) Does my MP3 player have a decoding fault?
2) Is the usage of MP3Gain causing this?

Thank you all very much!
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