I have been given some of the songs from Gilbert and Sullivan's Patience to practice with on an audio CD (not files) and the last note is cut off. I have found the original source, which is a collection of midi files and downloaded the appropriate midi file (and also this one) and the final note in the song also sounds obviously cut off. It is identical to the version on the CD (recorded from the same midi file). It plays at half the length that it should.

The last bar is in 6/8 time and is quaver, quaver-rest, quaver-rest, quaver, quaver-rest, quaver-rest (although the final two rests are not in the midi file) but the second quaver is distinctly shorter than the first quaver. I have used a midi editor to add two quaver rests after the final sounded note thinking that there might be a sustain that was being cut off but it made no difference. I then changed the final quaver to a crotchet and it now sounds the same as the previous quaver. Before I edited it the software I was using (Anvil Studio) indicated that the two notes were exactly the same length (192 ticks). If I play each original note separately they both sound the same length with a short sustain.

Is this an oddity of the midi format or something to do with this particular file?


I just realised it could be because of the operating system or the hardware, not necessarily the software. I'm using Windows XP and the sound card is a Sound Blaster X-Fi Xtreme Audio.

1 Answer 1


Maybe an oddity of your downloaded file (which I can't imagine) or your MIDI player - here in Garage Band everything looks and plays nicely. Notation is dotted quarter-note, dotted quarter-note and the sound is two staccato chords of eight, eigth-rest, eigth-rest, eight, eigth-rest, eigth-rest (or quarter, eigth-rest, quarter, eigth-rest).

As I obviously can't hear your file being played with your player I can think of one more thing only. Maybe you have a hanging sustain from the first note that makes it sound 'longer' that it actually should and the second chord has the right length...

Although, this track doesn't seem to use a lot of sustains, it sounds rather programmed and quantized, in position and note-length.

  • I forgot to mention that Windows Media Player also clips the last note. I don't know what software was used to record the CD.
    – CJ Dennis
    Commented Sep 16, 2015 at 4:52
  • Well, Windows... - that explains a lot... ;-)))
    – mramosch
    Commented Sep 17, 2015 at 0:13

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