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[Review + Demo] Rabbit Ears Audio – Hydrophonic

Posted by on Jan 31, 2011 | 0 comments

In the past year, Rabbit Ears Audio released Hydrophonic, a new sound effects library loaded with a wide variety of underwater recordings. I just finished a new video where I worked a lot with this library, so I’d like to give you my opinions about it.

As Michael Raphael (owner of REA) explains in this fantastic article on Sonic Terrain, he spent a lot of time to develop this library. I think it really worth it. He got a lot of great recordings with a high value for anyone needing high quality underwater sound effects (116 files included. 24-Bit/96kHz WAV). Apart of bubbles and water movements, Michael also experimented with lots of different objects and environments, which means unique and cool sources.

Working with the library was very cool. I had to process a lot of the sounds in many different ways. I was able to get a lot of different elements from those recordings. I applied heavy pitch changes to get low drones, or processed with filters and doppler to get whooshes and movement, etc. The quality of the sounds allows you to get a lot of great things from them. Pretty flexible.


New Sound Lab Releases LAX Aircraft SFX Library

Posted by on Jan 31, 2011 | 0 comments

New Sound Lab has released the previously announced LAX Aircraft, a new sound effects library loaded with 44 aircraft recordings at 24-Bit/96khz.

This library features descending aircraft flyovers at Los Angeles International Airport. One unique aspect of LAX is that it’s nestled in the city, making it easy to stand directly under very low flying airplanes to capture a great sound.

A range of aircraft were recorded for this release, including the Airbus A330, Boeing 737, 747, and Bombardier 800.

Two different microphone positions were used: One facing the oncoming aircraft, and the other pointing in the opposite direction to capture the flyover and further decent as the aircraft lands.

Sounds were captured with a Sanken CSS-5 Stereo Shotgun mic in 120 degree stereo mode. The microphone was mounted in a full Rycote windshield kit and connected to a Sound Devices 702 recorder.

LAX Aircraft – $25 | 625MB | 24-Bit & 96khz Broadcast Wave format | Metadata ready

Tim Walston Special: The Accidental Recordist

Posted by on Jan 28, 2011 | 9 comments

[Written by Tim Walston for Designing Sound]

Disclaimer: I am writing these articles as an independent sound designer. Any views or opinions expressed here are simply my own, and do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of any company, corporate entity or anyone else. Any images or sounds presented are subject to copyright by their respective owners, and are presented for educational purposes only. Any information given is correct to the best of my knowledge. Some assembly required. May cause drowsiness.

I find recording my own sound effects to be enormously satisfying. It’s wonderful to be able to get just the sound you need, but can’t find in your library. It’s also an exciting creative exercise to find a great prop and just see what you can do with it. As you might have guessed, I’m a big fan of unexpected discoveries. As I’ve also mentioned before, I don’t record often enough. I’m usually too busy. Rather than expensive, exotic recording extravaganzas, my recording sessions are usually small, improvised affairs, or simply seizing an opportunity that has presented itself. I write this to underscore the notion that you don’t necessarily need a lot of money to experience the joy of recording for yourself.

Early in my career, I sold my ADAT machines (remember those?) and bought a portable DAT recorder. I thought I exhibited great dedication to my new craft by bringing it with me on a winter trip to Minnesota, to visit… you guessed it… my in-laws. As a native of sunny Southern California, the snow and ice was new and exciting to me. I was recording everything I could, because I could. One night I went out into the snowy breeze around midnight, in my pajamas, boots, and a coat. It was 12 degrees F. Ah, what we do for our craft. Yes there are pictures, and no, you can’t see them.

During that same trip I recorded a plastic dog ball rolling across the linoleum kitchen floor. It had an interesting sound that reminded me of a large crackling rocket. Listen for yourself. First, is the raw recording and then a version with some 1999 style processing:


Designing Sound for iOS Platform

Posted by on Jan 28, 2011 | 0 comments

Great article on Gamasutra with useful information about working with audio in the iOS platform.

Since the launch of the iPhone, apps have been big, especially in the games sector, which has seen some sell like AAA titles. Major developers have added the iPhone to their list of available platforms for existing titles, as well as moved to develop unique titles just for it.

It has been a great platform for the indie developer too, thanks to its great accessibility, seeing games from very small groups of people reach huge audiences.

New opportunities have been opened up for people left in the wake of the recession to start their own developer ventures, setting up new companies and designing games, knowing there will be an audience for them.

It is the mobile nature, unique interface, huge number of users, great accessibility to developers and the nature of the “app” (short, simple, high quality games with a focus on playability) that has been incredibly useful to many developers.

With games being so large, though, and the bar for quality being set so high, what challenges does fitting such a big game in a tiny device involve? More specifically, what does this entail for the “audio guy”?

Continue reading…

Via G.A.N.G Newsletter

Tim Walston Special: It Might Be Loud: Sound Design for “The Fast and the Furious” (2001)

Posted by on Jan 27, 2011 | 0 comments

[Written by Tim Walston for Designing Sound]

Disclaimer: I am writing these articles as an independent sound designer. Any views or opinions expressed here are simply my own, and do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of any company, corporate entity or anyone else. Any images or sounds presented are subject to copyright by their respective owners, and are presented for educational purposes only. Any information given is correct to the best of my knowledge. Void where prohibited. Your mileage may vary.

Action movies are pure sonic playgrounds. The busier the scene, and crazier the action, the more opportunities we have with sound to enhance the experience for the audience. But with that opportunity comes the responsibility to clarify the action, and focus the audience’s attention. We want to thrill the moviegoers, not pummel them with audio. As sound professionals, it’s our job to bring to the mix all the elements we think are needed. A great mixer then sorts through the dialog, music and all the sound effects to find the perfect balance from moment to moment. The ultimate authority, in the end, is the director.

Rob Cohen makes movies that are great for sound. His action sequences are visceral, and visually dynamic. He also knows exactly what he wants sound to do for his films. I’ve had the good fortune to work on four of his films, and each one has been a blast.


Skip Lievsay Talks “True Grit” Mix

Posted by on Jan 26, 2011 | 0 comments

Great interview on In Contention with Skip Lievsay (Re-recording Mixer, Supervising Sound Editor) talking about the sound supervision and mix of “True Grit”.

Continuing today with our week-long look at the below-the-line elements of the Coen brothers’ “True Grit,” we’re chatting with sound re-recording mixer Skip Lievsay.

Along with Carter Burwell, Lievsay is one of only two of the individuals we talked to who goes all the way back to “Blood Simple” with the Coens.  What that says to me is that these filmmakers have maintained a sense of sonic consistency in their films over the years and put plenty of thought into the overall sound experience.

Lievsay was finally recognized by the Academy in 2007 for his and his collaborators’ work on “No Country for Old Men,” an understated piece of work that was fortunately not overshadowed completely by large scale productions that year.  This year he delighted in tackling one of his favorite genres: the western.

Lievsay was responsible for integrating dialogue and music into the mix, while his partner, Craig Berkey, handled sound effects.  He’s a candid and thoughtful fellow.  Have a listen to our chat below, and again, make sure you check back throughout the week as we continue this series of conversations.

Listen here…

Detroit Chop Shop Video Diary, See How Ric Viers and his Team Create Sound Effects

Posted by on Jan 25, 2011 | 3 comments

YouTube Preview Image

The Detroit Chop Shop is a location & post sound production studio that provides sound design, sound editing and recording services for all types of media. It was founded by Ric Viers, who has started a new video series called “Detroit Chop Shop Video Diary”, featuring weekly videos where he and his team show how they record/create sound effects and have a lot of fun.

If you want to follow the series, you can visit this playlist on Designing Sound TV, where I’ll add all the videos published in the series.

“UDK Sound Explorations”, Tutorials, Tips and Tricks on Implementing Sound in UDK

Posted by on Jan 25, 2011 | 1 comment

UDK Sound Explorations is a new and promising blog created by sound designer Graham Gatheral with the goal of sharing his finds and tricks on implementing sound with UDK.

I’ve started recording and editing sound for a game built in UDK, so in order to get up to speed on the implementation side of things, I’ve made a basic level which I can use like a sandbox environment. When I began putting sounds into the level I found it hard to get documentation on some of the finer points of this subject, so the aim of this blog is firstly to make a record of what I’m doing, and secondly to share the findings with other UDK sound beginners!

UDK Sound Explorations – Implementing sound in UDK

Via @lostlab

“Secrets for Great Film Sound” Webinar Report #1 – Pre-Production

Posted by on Jan 25, 2011 | 0 comments

I’m going to start publishing weekly reports about “Secret for Great Film Sound“, a new webinar series hosted by David Sonnenschein and Ric Viers.

Last week I assisted to the first webinar. It was fantastic! Ric and David talked a lot about pre-production process, including:

  • How to work with clients (Producers, directors, etc)
  • Budget and payments
  • Analyzing the script
  • Equipment needed
  • Networking and job finding suggestions


Speaking the Language of Horror Film Sound, New Book

Posted by on Jan 25, 2011 | 3 comments

Time to get yourself a new book, huh? Look at this:

“A fascinating behind the scenes look at the previously unexplored territory of horror film sound..
Through in-depth analysis of sound in the films of Dario Argento and discussions with leading practitioners, this book explores our inherent relationship with sound; examining how and why specific sounds are chosen and utilised to express and manipulate human perception and emotion.”

“Talent, initiative and attention to detail”

“Interesting and provocative”


Part 1Discussions & Interviews

  • Walter Murch
  • Antonella Fulci
  • Michel Chion
  • Claudio Simonetti
  • Claude Letessier
  • Gary Rydstrom
  • James Bernard

Part 2 - The Sound World of Dario Argento

  • Deep Red
  • Water:Bringer of Death
  • Beware the ‘Raptus’
  • Watcher in the Wind
  • Symbolic Roots
  • Suspiria
  • Voice Behind the Curtain
  • Great Wall of Sound
  • Conclusion
  • Footnotes
  • References
  • Recommended Reading
  • Filmography
  • Index

Via U.S.O Project