Well, it appears to have worked fine for everybody all this time without my idea implemented so I’m not holding my breath, however right now I can certainly see the value of it, especially as what I am suggesting is essentially already done as it is, albeit much less efficiently, by delivering audio files separately for an auto conform process.
The limitation of my suggested feature being implemented in the way that I suggest is as you describe: that a global toggle doesn’t account for particular and specialised circumstances where for example, the editor has declined to place all the possible tracks that might be available on the timeline, however the mixer would only benefit from the inclusion of some of those unused tracks, but not all. It’s true that my on/off, include/don’t include switch in this circumstance wouldn’t have any way to deal with that, that wouldn’t be messy.
That said, if you think of the current approach of delivering all the recorded audio to the mixer for them to auto conform, they’re faced with the exact same situation anyway. Similarly, the current global switch option that is implemented, either includes, or doesn’t include ALL the angles of a multicam clip including any you might potentially have seen no value in providing and would have excluded were it possible.
I also don’t see the obstacle in the explanation for why this is logical and sensible as a feature for multicam angles, but not for audio tracks. You point out a distinction whereby a multicamera clip, is a special kind of clip where all angles are on the timeline but not, because they are ’embedded’ in to the clip and so they’re ‘there’ even when not visible in UI or in the record monitor output, thus when an AAF is generated it is possible to collect all the media that comprises all the angles of the clip because of all of them are ‘on’ the timeline (in a sense of the word). This opposed to audio tracks from a source clip that are not laid on the timeline which you are saying are ‘absent’ from the timeline in a way that angles of a multicamera clip that aren’t actively selected are not. It seems to me that’s an accurate description of the current situation, more than it is an explanation because that distinction is arbitrary. All of the angles of a multicamera clip placed on the timeline aren’t ‘on’ the timeline, in the sense that the user interface doesn’t show you 4 clip segments, it is just the case that a relationship between the angle that is visible on the timeline and those which are not is understood by Avid and recognised during the process of generating an AAF, it seems to me then that a clip with only one track on the timeline but which has a relationship with 7 other audio track can be just as logically described as having all 7 tracks as “on” the timeline as a multicamera clip can be described as having all angles “on” the timeline, given Avid knows about the relationship between the 1 chosen track and the other 7 available ones. You can, with 1 keystroke from within Avid call up the other 7 tracks of audio available, just like you can with multicamera angles, and the AAF standard appears capable of dealing with this same level of complexity so the inclusion of one example of it and not the other seems just arbitrary.
If the AAF standard was not sophisticated enough to encompass the concept of media with special relationships to other media, and was simply a means of collecting and describing tracks on a timeline, the inability to do what I’m suggesting would make sense, however because you say it’s possible to do this with multicamera clips, it is hard to imagine it’s not equally possible, by means of the same mechanics that allows that to work, collect additional unused but still available source audio tracks. Having the option on by default would probably not be a great idea, but a checkbox exactly like the one that’s already there, would be great. There would be circumstances where you didn’t get exactly what you wanted out of it because the inability to choose which tracks to include or not, but if you wanted to do that, you’d do it the old fashioned way by either including or not including them on the timeline and disabling this theoretical option.
Also, after writing all this I went back and looked at the export dialogue again and I’m now quite thoroughly confused. It’s actually called ‘include inactive audio tracks’ not ‘include inactive tracks’ which suggests it is absolutely audio specific. It also makes me wonder something, if the option does or doesn’t enable the collecting of additional media for the AAF based on whether you do or don’t want additional unused angles collected with the chosen angle of a multicamera clip, what is the ‘commit multicam edits’ function for? Wouldn’t that be the same things as choosing not to enable the include inactive tracks option?