Inconsistent sound clipping problems on Pavlovia - anyone else having issues?

URL of experiment: simonGame [PsychoPy]

Description of the problem:
We’re running a Simon task on Pavlovia in which participants hear a sequence of sounds and have to reproduce them by pressing keys on the keyboard.

During piloting, we’ve had some issues with the first sound of the sequence being clipped. This only happens the first time it’s played (if the participant reproduces the sequence correctly, the sequence gets longer - so the first sound is played multiple times - but it only seems to be clipped on the first play). However, even the problems have been inconsistent:

  • Two participants had clipping for every first sound on all practice trials (3/3) and real trials (10/10) - on Chrome, Mac.
  • Another had clipping on just the first practice trial (1/3) and just the first real trial (1/10) on Chrome, Windows. The same person later used the same setup on a different wi-fi connection and only had clipping on the first practice trial and no issues on the real trials.

Others have had no problems at all (on Chrome on Mac and Edge on Windows).

We’re wondering if it has something to do with audio drivers or updated settings within browsers or OS - but it’s baffling us and I wanted to see if anyone else has come across similar issues recently? Any ideas appreciated!


Hi there,
what exactly do you mean by “clipping”? Is the whole sound gone or just parts of it?

I’ve had problems with elements of my Pavlovia routine not functioning correctly in the first trial of a loop before. I think this might be due to the browser not getting access to the hardware of the computer fast enough, but I could be wrong, just a guess.

Not an explanation, but a possible workaround: Maybe, in the beginning of every trial, have the experiment play a short silent sound or small unrelated beep before the onset of the experimental stimuli? That way, if there is clipping happening on some browsers or operating systems, at least it won’t happen during the important sounds of the experiment.

Thanks so much for replying. It’s just the first part of the sound that is gone, so your suggestion makes sense - thank you very much!

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