First Look at Rogue Amoeba Fission

by Derrick Story

Rogue Amoeba Fission

You don't always need a table saw; sometimes a pocket knife will do. I just finished editing audio with Rogue Amoeba's Fission, and it did exactly what I needed: no more, no less.

This just-released Universal Binary sound editor focuses on cutting audio. Sounds simple, and you probably already have a tool to handle that. But with Fission, I can open a MP3 file, snip out an offending segment, then save the edited file without recompressing it. Hmmm.... that is really handy.

Say that I have a podcast that's ready to go. It's been recorded, edited, includes wrappers, and is compressed down to MP3 or MP4. I'm ready to go when I hear a squeaky door opening in the background that I missed before. Do I want to go back to the master mix, edit, then recompress? Nope. I just want to get rid of the squeak and upload it. Fission lets me quickly remove the offending audio, save, and be done. Just like that.

Fission Interface

Another handy scenario is adding a closing fade to an audio track for a QuickTime slideshow. Normally I have a few hoops to jump through to accomplish this. With Fission, I open the audio track, crop it to the time length I need (say 2:30), move the scrubber to the last 5 seconds of the track, and click "Fade Out." Now all I have to do is use the Save Audio command, and I have an edited file waiting for me on my desktop that didn't have to be recompressed, and is ready to add to my slideshow.

You can download Fission for free and try a fully functional demo version. If you like it, and I'm sure you will, you can buy it for $32. But, if you already own Audio Hijack Pro, you can get a coupon for Fission that saves you $14. That means you can buy a nifty audio editor for $18. Give it a try.

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Scott Siegling
2006-09-22 17:09:34
Do you know if this program uses the controversial APE?
2006-09-22 19:08:49
No controversial APE :)
2006-09-22 22:40:25
So how does this program compare to Sound Studio 3 from Freeverse?
2006-09-23 07:09:37
Sound Studio 3 costs about twice as much, cannot save MP3 or AAC files, not to mention saving it without recompressing everything, and it can't handle Apple lossles Audio compression either.

Amadeus II is much more of a match for Fission. Amadeus costs only 5 bucks more, but it also supports Audio Units and has some really cool noise reduction features as well, it's not Unversal binary yet, though (but will be soon, I guess).

If Fission will ever get the same feature set as Amadeus II I'm sold, because I've been very happy with other Apps from Rogue Amoeba so far. This is in any case a very welcome app, because Sound Studio 3 never could really convince me for the rather high price.

2006-09-23 10:47:33
I'd echo Kilian's take on this, except I feel a bit more excited about Fission. For me, the fact that I can take compressed audio, cut parts out of it, then just save it without recompressing, is such a needed function. Plus, the UI is terrific. And if you have Hijack Pro, the two of them make a very nice set for folks like me who do lightweight audio work.
2006-09-24 05:07:23
Why no comparison to "MP3 Trimmer" from ? It's provided the same functionality for mp3 files for some time and is only 10.95 to register. I'm a happy customer.
2006-09-25 09:04:28
Like Rob I use MP3 Trimmer and, other than the ability to to trim M4a, it sounds like they do exactly the same thing. MP3 Trimmer has an easy to use interface that looks absolutely beautiful as well.

What's an MP4? ;)

2006-09-25 10:45:58
I'm very happy with Audacity. How's this compare with that?
David Battino
2006-09-25 14:28:59
I’m another happy MP3 Trimmer user, but the larger waveform display and finer fade functions in Fission look enticing.

What are y’all using for tag editing?

David Battino
2006-09-25 14:37:36
Oh, wait — Fission does tag-editing too, including artwork insertion. Now this is looking nice.