Robert Robert - 4 months ago 28
ActionScript Question

Syncing Frames to Audio and channel.position Accuracy

Calling channel.position on an ENTER_FRAME event, I notice that it's not being updated every frame, but it looks more like every frame and a half.

var sound:Sound = new Sound(new URLRequest('music.mp3'));
var channel:SoundChannel = sound.play(); // assume the sound is completely,
// totally, 100% loaded

addEventListener(Event.ENTER_FRAME, function(e:Event):void{
trace( "Position : " + channel.position
+ " - Frame : " + int(channel.position / 30));
});


will result in something along the lines of (30 FPS)

...
Position : 1439.6371882086166 - Frame : 47
// 48 is missing
** Position : 1486.077097505669 - Frame : 49
** Position : 1486.077097505669 - Frame : 49
Position : 1532.517006802721 - Frame : 51
Position : 1578.9569160997733 - Frame : 52
// 53 is missing
** Position : 1625.3968253968253 - Frame : 54
** Position : 1625.3968253968253 - Frame : 54
Position : 1671.8367346938776 - Frame : 55
// 56 is missing
Position : 1718.2766439909296 - Frame : 57
...


Has anyone noticed this behavior before? Are there any techniques for determining which 'frame' of audio is being played, knowing this inaccuracy?

Answer

Yes, this is normal behaviour because events are threaded and therefore will call their delegates whenever their thread has priority. Printing to the console is also threaded so it may not always be printing messages at the right time either. Infact, the issue you're seeing is probably just a printing issue. Try boosting your framerate, see what happens.

Still, in order to be more accurate you could try using the timer class. Typically, you can make the ticks happen much faster than your frames, meaning the margin for error will be lower. Still, you're using the event so there may be some drift.

To compensate for this, you can check the time versus the frames to determine the offset. This allow you to correct for any drift.

EDIT: This example was pulled straight from this page in the ActionScript 3 documentation, notice the positionTimer they're using:

package {
    import flash.display.Sprite;
    import flash.events.*;
    import flash.media.Sound;
    import flash.media.SoundChannel;
    import flash.net.URLRequest;
    import flash.utils.Timer;

    public class SoundChannelExample extends Sprite {
        private var url:String = "MySound.mp3";
        private var soundFactory:Sound;
        private var channel:SoundChannel;
        private var positionTimer:Timer;

        public function SoundChannelExample() {
            var request:URLRequest = new URLRequest(url);
            soundFactory = new Sound();
            soundFactory.addEventListener(Event.COMPLETE, completeHandler);
            soundFactory.addEventListener(Event.ID3, id3Handler);
            soundFactory.addEventListener(IOErrorEvent.IO_ERROR, ioErrorHandler);
            soundFactory.addEventListener(ProgressEvent.PROGRESS, progressHandler);
            soundFactory.load(request);

            channel = soundFactory.play();
            channel.addEventListener(Event.SOUND_COMPLETE, soundCompleteHandler);

            positionTimer = new Timer(50);
            positionTimer.addEventListener(TimerEvent.TIMER, positionTimerHandler);
            positionTimer.start();
        }


        private function positionTimerHandler(event:TimerEvent):void {
            trace("positionTimerHandler: " + channel.position.toFixed(2));
        }

        private function completeHandler(event:Event):void {
            trace("completeHandler: " + event);
        }

        private function id3Handler(event:Event):void {
            trace("id3Handler: " + event);
        }

        private function ioErrorHandler(event:Event):void {
            trace("ioErrorHandler: " + event);
            positionTimer.stop();       
        }

        private function progressHandler(event:ProgressEvent):void {
            trace("progressHandler: " + event);
        }

        private function soundCompleteHandler(event:Event):void {
            trace("soundCompleteHandler: " + event);
            positionTimer.stop();
        }
    }
}
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