Mono Editing Anomoly

David W. Tamkin (

No one has mentioned this problem before to my recollection. I find it odd. It occurs with both my MDS-JE500 and my MDS-JE510, with both digital and analog recordings. It involves trimming off trailing silence from a track copied from CD (input from radio or audiocassette doesn't really go to silence after a song).

I have an application for which I want to time the silence between tracks to two seconds.

(Before anyone suggests using autospace on playback, that doesn't solve the problem, because ...

  1. Autospace inserts three seconds, which is too much.
  2. I need the silence only at the ends of certain tracks, and autospace would put a three-second silence after every track.
  3. I'd still need to trim the trailing silence off the recording [just down to nothing instead of leaving two seconds' worth].)

Now, on a stereo recording the process is very straightforward: I use the divide feature and move one 60-ms increment at a time until I find the last position where the rehearsal sampling shows anything that registers on the decibel meter in the display. Then I move to the next one ahead to double check that rehearsal from there shows nothing but silence, and finally I allow 1.98 seconds (close enough for my purpose) by moving ahead thirty-three units more. There I divide the track mark, and then I erase the newly separated track containing the rest of the trailing silence.

For example, I play the end of the track and hit pause when the activity on the meter stops; in the divide feature, at (say) -11 the rehearsal still shows something on the meter, but at -10 it does not. -10+33=+23, so I divide at +23. Whatever was after the division point I delete.

But for monaural recordings something weird happens. Again, let's say that at -11 rehearsal still shows something on the meter, and at -10 it does not. Then at -9 it often will show something again, and from -8 on it's quiet. To be safe I then divide at +25 (-8+33) rather than at +23, but how can there be something registering after the -9 point if there was nothing registering after -10?

It never occurs with stereo recordings (nor stereo-mode recordings of mono information), only with monaural recordings. It happens on both machines and for both digital and analog input sources. Sometimes even mono recordings do not show this anomaly, but usually they do.

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