Projects / SoX / Comments

Comments for SoX

11 Jul 2008 21:48 bcrowell

more problems
I see it's been five years since I commented on this program. There seems to have been quite a bit of bitrot since then. Some of this may be packaging-related.

After upgrading my ubuntu box to hardy heron, I noticed that sox's play command no longer worked: "play soxio: Failed writing `default': unknown file type `ao'." Ogg support has also disappeared. None of this seems to be fixed by installing the libsox-fmt-ogg or libsox-fmt-all packages.

Use of the tempo command causes a segfault on my x64 box. This bug was supposed to have been fixed in sox 14.0.1-2, but that version segfaulted for me too.

Sox used to be able to decode mp3s without having lame installed; now it no longer does. IIRC there are no license or patent issues with decoders for mp3, so I don't understand why this situation has gotten worse rather than better.

Sox used to automatically recognize if you had lame installed before you compiled it, and would then take mp3 as an input format. That no longer seems to work.

Judging from discussion on ubuntuforms, there seem to be a lot of people struggling to get this kind of stuff to work:

20 Jul 2004 02:17 thefreek

Re: useful but buggy

> 2. The split command doesn't work the

> way the man page claims it does; you

> have to do "-c 2" instead.

Actually, you have to do a bit more; to get the (l)eft channel:

sox (inputfile) -c 1 (outputfile) avg -l

or the (r)ight:

sox (inputfile) -c 1 (outputfile) avg -r

The -c 1 is an outputfile-switch and tell it you only want one channel output.

Additionally the RH9-supplied version is buggy and the avg-filter will do straight nothing.

20 Nov 2003 14:22 bcrowell

useful but buggy
I use sox a lot, and find it very useful. However, it does have some bugs, and I've never had any luck getting in touch with the author about them, after trying all three e-mail addresses he has listed publicly. (Some mails bounced, others got no response.)

The bugs I've encountered are:

1. Doing "speed 0.5" can cause it to go into an endless loop and fill your hard disk. (This seems to occur with any number less than about 0.7.)

2. The split command doesn't work the way the man page claims it does; you have to do "-c 2" instead.


Project Spotlight


An open, cross-platform journaling program.


Project Spotlight


A scientific plotting package.