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Axel Rohrbach Special: Making of Cinematic Trailers

Posted by on Jul 28, 2011 | 5 comments

[Written by Axel Rohrbach]

Here is a teaser video showing some of the things we recorded:

But this is only a very small part. Creating the “Cinematic Trailers” was one of the biggest challenges for us so far. The goal was to provide a designed collection with sounds having both, the quality you expect when you are in a cinema watching trailers and at the same time new and inspiring sounds. In addition to that, we wanted to put stuff into the “Construction Kit” that we never found in other sound libraries before.

We started with some basics, to get a feeling for which source sounds we need to create the “Designed” collection. We tried some things here and there, recorded flame whooshes with torches, fire balls and burning arrows. We did textiles whooshes, impacts and eerie Piano scrapes. After those basic standards it became difficult. We thought “having orchestra recordings for those typical rises would be awesome”. This is something used and needed very often, but besides music instrument libraries like “Symphobia” I don’t know of any sound fx library, especially in that price range, that contains such things. As BOOM Library is a spin-off of the audio production company Dynamedion (, luckily we have access to a great and very experienced team for orchestra recordings. I instructed the orchestrators to arrange those orchestra-effects and let them some free space for experiments as well. We did the recording during one of the “Open Orchestra Recorcing Sessions” Dynamedion organizes several times per year, where the team books a high quality German orchestra for 2 days of recording and then gives everyone the chance to “buy in” the session to have music recorded. It is a great way to have smaller amounts of music recorded without needing to go through all the hassle and costs of organizing a complete session only for a few minutes of music.

Recording Taiko drums was another thing, not very typical for sound libraries yet very often used for trailer impacts. For the impacts we figured out that some really harsh crackling / breaking sounds are missing. That brought us to the idea of the plastic cups, shown in the video. We experimented with doormats, duct tape and glass. We put all kinds of stuff on a rope. We recorded very fast car drive bys with quiet engines to get rid of the car feeling as good as possible. Bike drive bys were very cool sounds as well as ski and snowboard pass bys. I had a vacuum cleaner around and recorded a pretty cool sound which actually sounds processed already, simply by turning it on and putting my hand in front of the tube and removing it again.
We prepared sustained sounds and swung speakers playing those sounds in front of the microphone, went to an airport to record starting planes and created some synthetic and processed sounds as well.

For the “Designed” collection we had some days of research before we started. We tried different new Plug-Ins, especially algorithmic reverbs and equalizers. Some new made into our PlugIn folders. I am personally very impressed by the sound of the Brainworx EQs. They are not very precise, but very nice sounding and clean. They replaced the Waves APIs on my system for now. Nebula3 is another EQ that is used quite often on the designed sounds. As for reverbs, all kind of plugins were used, only the Lexicon reverbs are new because they sound dense and crisp. We released two videos, going into the depth of the sessions of two sounds.

Spoken frankly, we are quite happy that this project is over, because it took way more time that we initially thought. However we are also happy because we use those sounds every day. I mentioned that in another interview before: we are our own best clients because we always do libraries that we are missing for our own daily work. Since the library has been released, we used the sounds in trailers already, I did the audio for a cinema logo animation of a VFX studio, used those sounds in movie scores as well as for in-game sound effects. It makes our lives much easier and I hope yours too. Together with Cinematic Metal it is a perfect combination to create fat trailerish title sounds. Thanks again to Charles Deenen for your support!

The greatest thing however is that we are indeed receiving tremendously good feedback from our customers at the moment. Honestly: after our first four releases we couldn’t imagine to have a fifth collection that would even be more acclaimed by our customers. Every release is so exciting: you never know if the sound designers out there will like it or not until the collection is being released. So this makes everything just more fun and inspires us to raise the bar with every new release.

Adam Stiles – Sound Designer (Trailer: The Dark Night, Gamer, Hellboy II: The Golden Army)
“There are so many sounds in here that aren’t anywhere else but needed so,so often. For example, to have that much taiko drum recording at that fidelity is worth the cost alone. Everything is fantastic, an excellent,excellent collection. With the Cinematic Metal library, you could almost do any high end trailer with those alone.
I’m so happy there’s a company like you guys out there. The need for these type of sounds are monumental. Especially for us at Riot Games, we need more, and more.”

Besides the demos, make sure to check out the “Facebook 500″ sounds which you can download for free here.

Those are mostly created exclusively with the Cinematic Trailers library. Some sounds however do include our other libraries, mainly Cinematic Metal.

For some more information check out our website.

Chuck Russom FX Releases Beeps

Posted by on Jul 27, 2011 | 0 comments

Chuck Russom has released a new sfx library called Beeps. It’s available at $25, but you can use a discount code ($5 off) created for Designing Sound readers. Code is BEEPDS.

This sound library is a collection of beeps, blips, and buzzers. Designed to provide source for user interface sounds, sci fi projects, hi tech computers/machines, and anywhere that a good set of beeps would be needed. Each beep comes in multiple durations, individually edited and ready to drop into your project. If you need to design your own beep length, many of the sounds come with a long version that you can edit and tailor to your needs.

Featuring 200 sounds recorded, designed, and mastered at 24bit 96K wav.

Delivered as broadcast wav files embedded with descriptive metadata, readable by Soundminer, Basehead, Netmix, Protools, and most other audio applications. Drop this collection into your sound library and start working today.

Game Audio Relevance – A New Resource for Game Audio Related Information

Posted by on Jul 27, 2011 | 0 comments

As a project of the IASIG, with the help of a team of volunteers, on the behalf of the Game Audio community, I’d like to introduce a new game audio related knowledge base:

Game Audio Relevance is all about providing game audio relevant links, articles, and videos in a curated and searchable means. While there are many other sources for game audio related articles and information, a “web search” does not always turn up reliable information. The purpose of this blog is to:

  • Provide content that is searchable using tags, with grouping based on searchable titles and the “tag cloud”.
  • Broadcast these links across other social media as a game audio related stream of constantly updating information. (in particularly via the Twitter #GameAudio hashtag)
  • Replace static webpages that host links but don’t provide cross referencing, search, or tags.

The name “Game Audio Relevance” is meant to portray that the information one will find is relevant to, but not necessarily exclusively about game audio. For example, many articles about audio recording or synthesis are relevant to game audio though not about game audio specifically.

Many fine people from the sound community have contributed to provide over 800 links to launch with and the resource continues to grow as we gobble up additional resources. The hope is that this provides a resource to people who are looking for information about Game Audio and allows them to dig deeper through the use of related articles and content.

Subscribing via RSS or Twitter @IASIG_GamAudRel will keep you up to date on new posts and keep you in the loop on developments as we move forward.

There’s an addition post commemorating the launch with some additional info over here:

Lost Chocolate Blog: Game Audio Relevance – LAUNCH!

Budget Implications in Game Audio Production

Posted by on Jul 27, 2011 | 2 comments

Former featured sound designer of the month Rob Bridgett has posted up a healthy summary of considerations faced by game audio professionals during a typical development. Issues of planning, budget, and resource management are discussed at length towards providing solutions to some of the common pitfalls inherent in managing large teams of creative talent.

Arkhive Sound: Budget Implications in Game Audio Production

WRAUGHK FX – New Independent Library

Posted by on Jul 26, 2011 | 1 comment

Robin Arnott has released his first commercial independent library: WRAUGHK FX 001 – Fireballs

What you get: 179 fire effects (26 minutes and 50 seconds of flamey glory) delivered as broadcast wav at 192 kHz/24bit and 96kHz/24bit in stereo Left-Right and additionally in stereo Mid-Side, with descriptive filenames and embedded descriptions.
Download size is 3.4 GB (zipped) for 192kHz and 1.7GB (zipped) for 96kHz.

WRAUGHK 001: Fireballs is a powerful high-definition collection of whooshing, roaring, bursting, sparking, whipping, zipping, sizzling and crackling fireballs, fire effects and infernos. With the goal building a malleable resource for the creative sound designer’s toolbox, I recruited flame effects expert Cary Sparx, who brought years of professional experience doing-awesome-stuff-with-fire.

These aren’t just for the connoisseur of explosions and burning action sequences – though they’re awesome for that. They’re also great for more textured whooshes and swishes, or adding punch to impacts, or generally getting that extra bassy oomph out of your badass sound creations. Aside from the flaming staves, rope darts, fire swords, meteors and flamethrowers that you’d hope for, you’ll also get some very unusual flame effects, like the tonal rush of a suffocating flame emerging from a giant PVC pipe (onto an unsuspecting recording engineer), or of melting plastic tonally zipping past before bursting into electronic sounding crackles and sizzles.

With effects organized by tool type and audio descriptors, in both stereo and in their unencoded M/S form, this collection makes finding just the right completely-kickass sound hassle-free.

Recorded at 192 kHz / 24bit with a Sennheiser MKH 50 / MKH 30 into a Tascam HD-P2 with Oade Brothers preamps, in a brand new hangar for an unopened airport. Certifiably awesome.


You can get it here.


KISS2011: 15-18 September 2011 in Porto, Portugal

Posted by on Jul 24, 2011 | 2 comments

Inspired by Portugal’s proud history of navigators who set out to explore beyond the known and visible horizon, the theme of the third annual Kyma International Sound Symposium (KISS2011) is “Exploring Sound Space” (Explorando o espaço do som).

Set in the nautically-inspired Casa Da Musica, architect Rem Koolhaas’ dramatic new music venue in Porto Portugal, the symposium will offer four intensive days of Kyma-related workshops, keynotes, technical talks, films, and live performances, all taking place from 15-18 September, 2011.

Sound designers, composers, performers, sound-artists, researchers, and others interested in exploring sound space are invited to join in the symposium to learn, discuss, share, listen, and enjoy! Kyma practitioners will have ample opportunities to network and exchange knowledge with colleagues from around the world.

More info here.

Sound Design Challenge #11: Sound Scavenging

Posted by on Jul 21, 2011 | 6 comments

It’s time for the next Sound Design Challenge! We’re really excited to have this one sponsored by McDSP. They’re offering up a copy of their Futzbox plug-in to the winner. Please take the time to thank them by following them on Twitter @McDSP_PlugIns and visiting their Facebook page (feel free to “Like” it while you’re there).

We’re going to try something a little different with this one, and it’s going to be a bit like a scavenger hunt. Here are the details… (more…)