Sound editor/mixer Andrew Walker has launched Film Sound Effects, a huge vintage sound library distributed in a modern way, independent, digital. The library started in 1966 by re-recording mixer Gerry Humphreys (Ghandi, The Italian Job, Blade Runner) and sound recordist Peter Handford (Out Of Africa, Frenzy, Hope and Glory). It was recorded originally on tape, then transfered to DAT in the 90’s and finally digitized as 48khz/24-Bit, which is the version available online.
Catalogued in two leather bound folders and with over five thousand entries, it’s been used by sound editors on over three hundred movies.Sound effects were charged by how many feet of stock were used before eventually getting mixed into the final soundtrack.
With the introduction of non linear digital editing and the ease at which cd sound effect libraries could be accessed, the library soon gathered dust in Gerry’s office.
Now after a long time spent ingesting the library into a digital file format it represents a fantastic wealth of sounds that’s unique for the period it came from.
If you’re searching for authentic sound effects for feature films, television drama,documentaries or games you’ll find this library a rich source of new material and a valuable addition to your existing sound effects libraries.
The library is available in several categories, at different prices for each pack. More info at FSE. Now below is a quick q&a I had with Andrew talking about the new project.
How this idea of the digital version of FSE started out?
I had an audio post facility based at Twickenham Film Studios together with Dean Humphreys called Crossfade. Deanʼs father Gerry was the head of the sound department at Twickenham and when he passed away in 2006 we inherited a box full of DAT tapes that had been cleared out of his office. We didnʼt initially set out to make it a commercial library rather just transfer it and add it to our existing library but after it all got digitised we realised it would make a perfect vintage library.
Could you talk us about the process of data transfer from the DATs to digital files? How you dealt with metadata on that stage?
We were lucky to have the original catalogue that referenced to the DAT tapes, it was in essence the soundminer for that era, each effect had a unique FSE number with a detailed description and category cross referenced to the DAT roll it resided on.
Transferring was a three stage process,first digitizing in each tape in its entirety. Each effect had an ident which made the second task of editing the recording and naming each file straight forward. The final part was the most time consuming, using soundminer and having the original catalogue for cross reference, each FSE file had itʼs description and category typed word for word into the metadata fields and was done whenever we had a quiet moment between jobs.