Latency and out-of-sync audio are probably one of the most annoying things ever. I used to run into this problem all of the time when I used iMovie, for instance. A lot of people try doing a number of things to fix their delay and lagging issues, but the solution is usually right in front of them.
In fact, most people’s latency problem has a lot more to do with the type of headphones or speakers they’re using. If you’re a serious content creator and you like to have great audio along with your video content, there’s one thing that you probably have to stop.
To fix out-of-sync audio on TikTok, stop using Bluetooth speakers and headphones, including AirPods and AirPod Pros. Bluetooth technology sometimes doesn’t have the bandwidth to sufficiently transfer audio and video data, resulting in a lag. It’s not uncommon to see 100 – 300ms of delay.
And really, this is the main reason why so many people run into latency and lag problems when trying to record on TikTok and in DAWs. This is especially the case when recording TikTok duets. I know, because I ran into the same problem and then quickly remembered why it was happening. Let’s talk a bit more about this now.
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Fixing Out of Sync Audio on TikTok – The Main Way
1) Stop Using Bluetooth Headphones and Speakers When Recording
As I was saying at the start of the article, I formerly was an iMovie user and I ran into audio drift almost every single day. I seriously hated it. I can’t remember exactly why, but I noticed that when I switched to Telestream’s Screenflow (which I got on their website), I no longer run into this problem. In fact, it hasn’t happened to me since.
If you’ll recall my other article on latency, I said the same same thing in it. The other day I was trying to make a duet on TikTok, and I couldn’t for the life of me get the timing right. I asked myself, “is my timing really that bad?” But then I remembered what I had learned a couple of years later about MIDI keyboards and Bluetooth speakers/headphones.
You can’t have Bluetooth speakers and headphones hooked up to your computer while you’re trying to lay down a beat or melody with a MIDI keyboard. It’s because there will be a very small delay between when you strike the note, and when the computer actually inputs that data. This is the reason why these Reddit users ran into the same issue.
Of course, there are other reasons why you run into latency on TikTok (here’s my guide on how to make guitar videos there, by the way). But I would say, by and large, most people’s delay problems on all of these platforms and DAWs have to do with their AirPods/AirPod Pros and similar Bluetooth devices.
We all love Bluetooth technology, but when it comes to recording, take those out and use something else. If you absolutely insist on using Bluetooth headphones, Audio-Technica’s ATH-M50xBT (on Amazon) is a great option because they have Bluetooth capability AND a wired connection.
I love my AirPod Pros too (which I also got on Amazon), but they just don’t cut it for recording duets and similar content on TikTok and other platforms.
Maybe someone else has figured out a way to make it work, but I know haven’t, and I’m not interested in taking the time for that either. Especially when I just have to use my regular headphones which I almost always have with me anyway. I use the Eytomotic ER4SR’s (on Amazon).
There are a few other useful options in the case that Bluetooth technology isn’t the problem. Some of the other ones reported online are not that great, so I won’t even bother talking about them. But the following two seem to work as well for those of us who are already using a wired connection.
Other Feasible Solutions to Latency and Delay on TikTok
1) Reboot TikTok and Your Device
If you’re not using Bluetooth headphones or speakers at all, then all of the usual troubleshooting options are on the table. I don’t have any other nifty tips and tricks for you that other people haven’t already said.
That said, the best troubleshooting method ever is the good old-fashioned reboot. This seems to work the best out of anything – something I’ve been trying to teach my mom forever. She just won’t do it when her things aren’t working, for some reason, I don’t know why. But I digress.
First, try restarting TikTok and see if it fixes the problem. If it’s still causing problems after you open it up, reboot your entire device. I don’t think you need a tutorial on how to restart phones and applications, so let’s just jump right into the next strategy.
2) Clear the TikTok Cache
If there is too much data in TikTok’s cache, this could be slowing it down. Essentially, there has to be enough bandwidth for the data to get to where it needs to be.
I read a useful analogy on this website that described bandwidth like a road. Data are the cars, and the bandwidth is the road. If there are too many cars for what the road can handle, it leads to traffic jams.
Similarly, if TikTok is trying to transmit more data than it can handle, you’ll also run into latency and delay issues. I think latency might be the most annoying thing ever. Anyway, here’s how to do it.
How to Clear the Cache on TikTok
1) Open TikTok on Your Device
2) Tap on the Settings and Privacy Icon In the Top-Right Part of the Interface
3) Find the Cache and Cellular Data Tab
4) Select “Clear Cache”
If you wanted to take it an extra step, you could restart TikTok, and then reboot your device as well and see if that fixes your problem. Let’s be real though, what really solved your TikTok latency issue was switching to wired headphones.
Important Things to Note About Fixing TikTok Audio
1) There Could Be Other Reasons (And Other Solutions) for Your Problem
Ultimately, I can only speak from my own experience so I can’t give a bunch of solutions I’ve never tried. The Bluetooth connection is usually the problem, even though it’s very obvious and irritating to other people – especially the audiophile-type, like this guy down here:
This dude on my YouTube channel said I was an idiot for assuming that people didn’t know that Bluetooth was the issue, but every other commenter was thrilled to hear me tell them what the issue was.