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Posted by on Apr 12, 2012 | 0 comments

Clocks, New Library by TONSTURM

The guys at Tonsturm have released their sixth library, called Clocks.

With this sound pack you get a huge variety of ticking and chiming clock sound effects, recorded from various type of clocks: Old tower clockworks, wall clocks, cuckoo clocks, antique grandfather clocks and many more….

Avaliable at $69 (until 25.04.2012). Specs: 24 Bit 96 kHz / 142 Files / 6,42 GB

Below are some details Tilman and Emil shared with DS about the creating of this new release.

How did you start to record this library?

The first clock we actually recorded was the clockwork of our “Cologne Cathedral”, you have probably heard of it before: It is one of the biggest cathedrals in the world and a world heritage site. We got an exclusive guide to the tower clock, which is still the original mechanic unit and not an atomic clock. It was a big experience to be in areas of this huge cathedral where you usually are not allowed to go.

But unfortunately we realized that the city noise was much too loud. We did record it for about two hours or more but after checking the recordings in the studio we decided to not include it in the library. After this initial recording we knew we had to find a way to record more of these fascinating tower clocks in a more silent and controlled environment.

I wonder how your interpretation of time or the age of the clocks affected the way you approached the library. I guess those weren’t used just as “generators” of sonic material.

The perception of time has changed a lot over the centuries. And so the sound of clocks has changed too. The interesting question for us was, what will happen if we record a clock from a decade, where time had a very different meaning. Like the clock from 1600 AD for example. Not to forget these clocks have an interesting history, most times they were used in churches. Will this have a different impact when you create a scene in a movie which takes place today? What will be the consequence?

What was the setup you used for the clocks? any special preference regarding the size of the objects?

We used a lot of different microphone setups for this sound pack. A MKH 70, 30, 8050, Schoeps CCM41, CCM8 and a piezo microphone Schertler Dyn C stereo set. We decided to add the Shertler piezo mics as they are build to pick up classical instruments and have a very low self noise. We were interested in how the clocks would sound when recorded with a piezo mic directly from the surface, especially those tower clocks. Sometimes the sound of the piezo mics was so different from the other microphones, you could have thought that it is a different clock.

Could you tell us about those special gems you recorded? I know there are clocks that are about 400 years old?

We found someone who owns a lot of tower clocks, Mr. Harig, he is a real expert when it comes to clocks. He restored every single clock on his own. A work where you have to be very detailed and precise. He also owns a clock which is from around 1600 Anno Domini (which is short after the middle ages..). It is really astonishing to see something work that was crafted that long ago, hearing it is like doing a time travel!

What are your favorite sounds from the pack? Any special story about any of them?

Yes, there is one sound named “many clocks”. There you hear almost all tower clocks of Mr. Harig at once:-). All the tower clocks are ticking and working in one room. It is really like a concert. Mr. Harig told us, that he likes to sit in a chair and just listen to his clocks. In the evening he is going there, starting every clock, just sitting and listening. This is such a touching scene, at least for us, it could be in a movie.

You told me one special thing you did on the sounds, and is that you edited the files so they can be looped without needing to do fades. Do you see this as the way independent libraries could evolve? Actually thinking about the designer and giving those add-ons, those things that will change their workflow perhaps?

Yes, absolutely! I think we all already do this while recording. The way we record them is the way we need them in editing for film. But often this can be taken further, no doubt. One problem is that everyone is editing a little bit different. But the way we did it with the clocks is something I missed a lot. When looping a clock you always have to be patient that the loop is correct, that the rhythm is correct when looped. Its really much more convenient if this is done in first place, so you don´t have to worry about this anymore. And no fades, just apple-d, its really nice to add clocks this way to a project:-). So, if you, the reader, have any idea how you would like to have sounds prepared, just write us! its important to get inspirations!

Thanks a lot for your questions Miguel!


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