Before introducing the best methods to fix VLC audio sync issues, let’s explore their types and causes to help you prevent them in the future.
VLC audio sync issues can manifest in two ways:
- Audio delay – the sound lagging behind the video
- Audio advance – the sound playing before its corresponding scene
Both problems can occur immediately after playback or gradually develop while watching a video. Moreover, they can arise when playing specific, not all, videos. Why? Let’s find out.
The most prevalent causes of VLC audio sync problems include the following:
- Temporary software glitches – VLC isn’t immune to problems. However, updates typically resolve them.
- Outdated audio and video drivers – Updating or reinstalling them can eliminate the problem.
- Incompatible codecs – Your media player may not support the codecs that previously compressed your problematic video. That can delay audio in VLC.
- Incorrect settings during recording – Video frame rate, bitrate, and resolution can impact audio-video synchronization, causing delayed or hastened audio.
- Audio mixing mistakes – Mismatching mic and line input levels can cause AV synchronization issues.
- Editing errors – Besides oversights during editing, some video editing tools poorly handle AV synchronization, adding random audio delays.
- Video file corruption – Corrupted videos often have sections with misaligned audio and video. They can also refuse to open sometimes.
The good news is you can fix VLC audio sync issues, regardless of the cause. If updating VLC and your audio and video drivers doesn’t resolve the problem, the methods below should. Let’s first see how to recognize out-of-sync audio in VLC.
Determining if VLC audio is out of sync is pretty straightforward. You only need to play a video, watch, and listen. Here’s what you might notice:
- The sound plays catch-up with the video. You see all the action before hearing the music, dialog, effects, or other audio. That’s VLC audio delay or, as many refer to it, a lip-sync error.
- The sound precedes its corresponding scene. You hear what’s happening in the video before seeing the action. It’s not a pleasant experience when watching movies or TV shows. You feel like there should be a “Spoiler alert!” message notifying you of the hastened audio.
Whether these issues occur immediately or the audio gradually drifts off during playback, you can eliminate them with the proven methods below and enjoy your favorite videos.
You don’t have to forgo your favorite media player because it refuses to play videos correctly. The following fixes will help you quickly resolve VLC audio delay or advance problems.
Method 1: Fix Corrupted Videos With Wondershare Repairit
Wondershare Repairit is your go-to solution when file corruption is at play. Its video repair software supports 18 formats and can fix any broken, corrupted, or unplayable video, whether problems during recording, editing, conversion, or transfer have damaged it.
Here’s how to use it to fix corrupted videos with VLC audio sync issues:
Step 1: Download Wondershare Repairit Desktop Video Repair to your computer.
Step 2: Click Add to upload corrupted videos.
Step 3: Click Repair to initiate the process.
Step 4: Preview the videos to ensure their quality is intact. If a particular result is far from the initial video quality, click Advanced Repair. Otherwise, skip to the last step.
Step 5: Click the Folder icon to upload a sample video, ensuring it’s playable and matches the corrupted video’s format and origin device (e.g., the camera you used to record it). Click Next.
Step 6: The program will check the parameters (e.g., format, resolution, bitrate, and encoding) to confirm the compatibility between the corrupted and reference videos. Click Repair once everything is in order.
Step 7: Once the software removes video corruption, click Save All and set the desired destination (preferably a different file path than the original).
Wondershare Repairit is available on Windows and macOS, so download the correct version. The steps above showcase a Windows interface, but the UI is identical on macOS.
Method 2: Manually Sync VLC Audio
VLC has excellent built-in features for synchronizing audio and video files. One of them includes hotkeys for manually tweaking audio delay. They shift audio by 50 milliseconds, allowing for accurate AV synchronization.
However, it’s a temporary fix. It works for individual files, meaning you’re back to square one when playing another video. Additionally, the adjustment will return to default settings if you replay the newly synchronized video.
Here’s how to manually sync VLC audio:
Step 1: Play a video with out-of-sync audio in VLC.
Step 2: If you’re a Windows user and hear the sound after its corresponding scene, hit K on your keyboard to increase the audio delay, i.e., decrease the audio speed. If the sound plays sooner than it should, use the J key to reduce the speed rate. The respective hotkeys on macOS are G and F.
Step 3: If nothing happens, check the hotkeys; you may have changed them at some point. Go to Tools > Preferences on Windows or VLC > Preferences on macOS. Navigate to the correct settings to see which hotkeys correspond to audio delay. You can search for them to avoid unnecessary scrolling.
Method 3: Configure Track Synchronization
Track synchronization in VLC lets you automatically sync audio and video but applies only to currently playing files. Still, it’s an excellent fix for enjoying videos without AV sync problems.
It’s perfect when you need more precision after using hotkeys because it lets you set lower values than 50 milliseconds.
Here’s how to configure track synchronization on Windows:
Step 1: Play a video with out-of-sync audio in VLC.
Step 2: Go to Tools > Track Synchronization.
Step 3: Set a positive value to delay the audio (if it plays later than it should) or a negative one to accelerate it (if it precedes its corresponding scene). You’ll see Delayed or Hastened next to the field.
Here’s how to configure track synchronization on macOS:
Step 1: Play your video and go to Window > Track Synchronization.
Step 2: Set the correct value using the information above (Step 3 for Windows users).
Method 4: Configure Audio Desynchronization Compensation
Unlike the previous features, audio desynchronization compensation in VLC is a permanent fix. It doesn’t reset whenever you replay a newly synchronized video or play another one.
That means it applies to all videos. You don’t want to use it if only one or several videos have AV sync problems because it will affect healthy files. However, if all videos you play in VLC have out-of-sync audio with identical delay, this feature is your go-to solution.
Here’s how to configure audio desynchronization compensation on Windows:
Step 1: Launch VLC and go to Tools > Preferences.
Step 2: Click All in the bottom left corner to show all settings, select Audio in the sidebar, and set the correct Audio desynchronization compensation value. Follow the same logic as above: a positive number will delay the audio (if it lags), while a negative one will accelerate it (if it plays sooner than it should).
Follow these steps to configure audio desynchronization compensation on macOS:
Step 1: Launch VLC and go to VLC > Preferences.
Step 2: Follow the instructions from Step 2 for Windows users.
VLC’s built-in features can’t help with video corruption, but you don’t need to download software to fix it. You can use a trusted online tool like Wondershare Repairit’s Online Video Repair.
Here’s how to use it to fix videos online:
Step 1: Go to Wondershare Repairit’s Online Video Repair page and click Add to upload corrupted videos.
Step 2: Click Repair to initiate the process.
Step 3: Click the Play icon to preview the restored videos. If the quality isn’t what you expected, click Upload a Sample Video to leverage the Advanced Repair mode. Ensure reference videos match their corrupted counterparts’ format and origin device. Once the tool fixes them, hit Download All and save them to your device.
The desktop version supports more file formats and doesn’t impose quantity and size limits, but the online tool is perfect for quick repairs.
Audio playing before or after its intended video section can be irritating (to say the least). However, it doesn’t mean your videos are beyond repair. You can synchronize VLC audio and video in several simple steps.
You can do it manually with hotkeys, configure track synchronization for currently playing videos, or tweak audio desynchronization compensation for all videos.
However, professional tools like Wondershare Repairit are your best bet for fixing corrupted videos. Whether you use its desktop or online version, you can quickly restore even severely damaged files.