3.02.2009

Fixing the Sound in Adobe Captivate

I have been trying out Adobe's eLearning Suite and soon came across a slight bug -- Captivate would not record an audio narration. To work around it, I used Adobe Soundbooth CS4 to record the narration. I first tried saving the narration as a *.WAV file, but Captivate would not load it into the slide. I then went back to Soundbooth and saved it as an *.MP3 file. Captivate imported the new format without any problems. In addition, the *.WAV file was 687 MB, while the *.MP3 file was reduced to 590 bytes. I did not notice any quality difference between the two files; however, this was only a simple voice narration; a music or a more complex audio file will probably have a more noticeable loss of quality.

In the meantime, I sent a bug report to Adobe, which they followed-up the next morning saying that some sound cards have trouble with the audio dll file and provided this fix:

  1. Close Captivate 4 if it is open.
  2. Download the file kept at https://share.acrobat.com/adc/document.do?docid=a14e1bd9-dc10-4456-9cd2-44489809b78e
  3. Go to your Captivate 4 install folder (mine was located at: C:\Program Files\Adobe\Adobe Cativate 4)
  4. Rename nsaudio.dll as nsaudio.dll.bak or anything which doesn't have a dll extension
  5. Copy the file from step 1 to Captivate 4 install folder
  6. rename it as nsaudio.dll
  7. Start Captivate 4
  8. Try to play the audio - should go fine
The fix worked just fine; however, during my work-around, I found the advantage of using Soundbooth is that you get a much greater control of tweaking the sound quality, while Captivate only has a couple of controls for fine tuning the sound. Thus, if you just want to insert a quick sound byte, use Captivate, but if you really want to tweak the sound, use Soundbooth or another audio editor.

22 comments:

Anonymous said...

I would try reinstalling your sound card drivers. I haven't had any problems.

Anonymous said...

and I guess this problem would only be on Vista machines

Rajeev
http://rajntechnlife.wordpress.com/

Donald Clark said...

The problem is not the drivers but rather Captivate 4 as my other programs (such as PowerPoint) have no problem with audio recordings. Even Adobe's Soundbooth had no problem with voice recordings.

In addition, Adobe supplied me with a new DLL file that fixed the problem. From my readings I noticed they also had the same problem with Captivate 3 in that it failed to recognize some sound cards (popular ones at that).

Also, I don't think it is a Vista problem, but rather their original DLL file because their new DLL file fixed the problem. Its become much to easy to place the blame on Vista.

Note that I use Vista, but it is not my preferred operating system. My primary system is OS X. Yes I'm a Mac user, but have a PC for programs such as Adobe's eLearning Suite.

Rajeev said...

I meant it is problem with Adobe Captivate 4 on Vista - because I did not find any mention of Vista in blog post.

Adobe Captivate 4 will not have any problem on non Vista machines for symptoms mentioned in this post.

I mentioned this as the link to modified dll is given - is meant only for Vista - if it is downloaded and applied to non Vista machines - it might create problems so I thought to mention it in my comment :-)

Donald Clark said...

Thank you Rajeev,

I did not realize this problem only pertained to Vista. While trying to find a fix for the problem I went to Adobe's forum site and came away with the impression that this was not centralized to one operating system.

Anonymous said...

It is not just Vista. I am on XP and have bad audio issues with CP4. Same files and settings work great in CP3.

Anonymous said...

worked for me! thanks!

Anonymous said...

Tried this and it worked wonderfully and easily....gosh if only Adobe could come up with these fixes for their products! We have been through the circles with tech support and they were unable to solve this problem....their solution was to go back to XP!!!!!

rochesterchiro said...

Thank you so much for this fix. I was having the audio playback problem on a Vista machine with Captivate 4 and, after an hour of needless fiddling, your suggestion fixed it in a few seconds.

My eternal gratitude.

DaveF said...

Thanks for help!

I was getting really frustrated and disappointed with Captivate. But now it works, thanks to you!

hock said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

The fixed worked after I reinstalled the NSAudio.dll file. But you must first register and log into Adobe Share before you can access the file and download it. So first register at https://share.acrobat.com then click the link to go directly to the file to download and rename on your computer. Now my audio works in Captivate 4. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Thank you Donald!!! Your tip worked like a charm the first time for me.

Pete said...

Fortunately, it works with the fix described by you, Donald!

Unfortunately, though, the audio quality is worse than it is with Captivate 3 as already mentioned by an earlier commenter (unless I convert the wav audio file into mp3 before importing into Captivate 4, which would mean an additional task in my work flow, thousands of times). So I may still use version 3 for the time being, it seems. :-(

By the way, I also use Soundbooth, as well as Audition.

Hopefully, Adobe fixes this soon.

Anonymous said...

This worked great! I can now hear my presentation.
Thanks!

Anonymous said...

I too have been frustrated with no only audio issues but instability of the program itself. The latest surprise with Captivate 4 is recording with a Samson C01U USB microphone is now unbalanced, i.e. one channel is much louder than the other. This is not a problem with Captivate 3 or other applications. Yes I installed the patch after writing to their tech support to report severe degradation of audio quality at the same compression levels when compared to Captivate 3. Anybody else experience this?

Donald Clark said...

You might try this latest update from Adobe:
http://www.adobe.com/support/captivate/downloads.html

It is supposed to fix other audio quality issues.

Anonymous said...

Thanks. This totally fixed our problems.

Anonymous said...

Thanks - this fix worked beautifully!

tlbrownie02 said...

I have Windows 7 and had the same problem, however, these instructions fixed it. Thank you!

Stuart Deane said...

win 7, captivate 4 - this worked perfectly - many thanks

Niall said...

Windows 7; Captivate 4 - speech was going at twice the speed in recordings. Applied your patch, works perfectly. Thanks