I have 3 mp4 files:

  • 1.mp4 - Has video, no audio
  • 2.mp4 - Has video and audio
  • 3.mp4 - Has video and audio

I have created a clips file (clips.txt) for concatenation:

file '1.mp4'
file '2.mp4'
file '3.mp4'

I run the following command line:

ffmpeg -f concat -i "clips.txt" -c:a aac -b:a 160k -y "out.mp4"

The file that is produced has video but no audio, presumably because 1.mp4 has no audio track.

If I rearrange clips.txt so 1.mp4 is not first, out.mp4 has an audio track.

Is there a way of forcing ffmpeg to use audio? I guess it would have to produce a silent audio track for any silent videos.


  • or add a silent track first to the one without any audio, see stackoverflow.com/questions/11779490/… for some ideas.
    – Psycogeek
    Jul 5, 2016 at 1:48
  • That was what I was thinking I'd need to do. I was hoping for a cleaner solution, but I decided I'd just stick to that.
    – Phil
    Jul 5, 2016 at 6:08

1 Answer 1


For anyone that stumbles onto this and wants to achieve the same thing as I do, I solved it as follows:

ffmpeg -i "1.mp4" -f lavfi -i aevalsrc=0 -shortest -y "new_1.mp4"

What this says is:

  • Take 1.mp4 (which is the video clip without audio) (-i "1.mp4")
  • Generate the minimum silence required (-f lavfi -i aevalsrc=0 -shortest)
  • Output the result (-y "new_1.mp4")

From here I concatenate as I did before, but replacing "1.mp4" in clips.txt with "new_1.mp4"

  • 4
    For the silent audio make sure to match the channel layout and sample rate of the other inputs. For example, 44.1kHz stereo audio: -i anullsrc=cl=stereo:r=44100 (these are the default settings for the anullsrc filter).
    – llogan
    Jul 5, 2016 at 6:26
  • Oh. I didn't know to do that. Thanks!
    – Phil
    Jul 5, 2016 at 6:32
  • 4
    Also, consider adding -c:v copy to just re-mux the video instead of also re-encoding it.
    – llogan
    Jul 5, 2016 at 6:33

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