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Posted by on Apr 24, 2015 | 0 comments

Creative Field Recording: “Visual Microphones” Create Missing Audio

In his newest blog post, Paul Virostek of Creative Field Recording examines an interesting question: If we’re able to recolorize black and white films, can we do the same with audio? The article discusses unique techniques and tools like visual microphones, which transcend regular audio restoration and offer the possibility of creating audio that would have been present in the original visuals. Check out the post here.

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Posted by on Apr 22, 2015 | 1 comment

Modern Editing Style on Aotg.com

We here at Designing Sound know that any creative endeavor is about more than just the audio. In order for any piece of media to be successful, it needs a unified creative direction, and the support of numerous skilled people in many different disciplines. In the interest of learning more about other disciplines that run parallel to audio in media, we’re teaming up with Aotg.com to bring you interesting and enlightening articles from other disciplines, including editing and creative direction. Our first cross-site offering is Modern Editing Style, which takes a look at both the wide variety of editing styles in modern cinema, as well as a closer examination of some unique editing choices made in modern films.

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Posted by on Aug 8, 2014 | 0 comments

Film Sound Tips by Glenn Kiser, Director of the Dolby Institute

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Indiewire has published a guest post by Dolby Institute’s director Glenn Kiser in which he talks to filmmakers about the importance of sound design from the beginning of production.

Making a movie is a never-ending series of compromises, and nothing is as good as the original concept you had in mind. But if you’re really lucky, there’s a moment of alchemy that can happen in the editing room when you put the right piece of music or the right sound effect into the cut. Suddenly something magical happens, and the thing comes to life. You forget about the perfect location you couldn’t secure and the cold your lead actor had on the day you shot the emotional scene. It stops being a maddening litany of disappointments and becomes a movie.

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(via musicofsound)

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Posted by on Nov 25, 2013 | 10 comments

The Dialog Re-Assign Workflow

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My first exposure to noise reduction processing was with Waves X-Noise, working clip-by-clip, finding a snippet of noise in the clear, setting the noise profile, then processing the clip before moving to the next one. This offline processing method, while effective, would end up taking a lot of time, especially on long-form projects. Similarly, if you had a processed clip that needed its noise reduction altered, you would have to restore the un-processed version, find the noise print again, re-adjust the parameters, and then re-process it. When time is short (and when isn’t it?), real-time processes begin to look like a much better option. Unfortunately, plugins like X-Noise or iZotope RX Denoiser can’t be used effectively in real-time due to the enormous amounts of processing overhead required and the unmanageable latency added to the signal. With plugins like the new RX 3 Dialog Denoiser and Wave’s WNS and W43, real-time noise processing without expensive hardware is feasible, but it requires a change in workflow to utilize effectively. As I found once I started using the RX 3 Dialog Denoiser, putting one per dialog track was an inefficient use of CPU resources, and simply putting an instance on the main dialog bus proved problematic, especially when dealing with adjacent clips that had drastically different noise profiles.

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Posted by on Sep 26, 2013 | 2 comments

Tunes and Tones: A Writer/Director’s Perspective on Sound

Pierce O'Toole, photo by Kosuke Haga

Pierce O’Toole, photo by Kosuke Haga

Guest Contribution by Pierce O’Toole

Writer/Director Pierce O’Toole shares his thoughts on music and sound design, and how they play into his creative process.  

As a writer and director, my biggest concern on any project is the story. Every project has a story that you are trying to tell. When I approach sound, the lens I view it through – or the speaker I hear it through, I guess – is one of story. While this is true of every element of the filmmaking process, sound is unlike any of the others because it’s the only element that follows me through the entire process.

When I begin writing, music is very important. At first, it’s just something atmospheric or energetic, like The Album Leaf or Daft Punk. As I get further along in the writing process, I get a better sense of the story and the tone. At this point, the music has to match. If it doesn’t, it can make it harder to write. I build playlists that I listen to on repeat. I’ve had several roommates that hate me for this, especially when the playlist is less than ten songs. I don’t ever tire of the music, no matter how many times I listen to it, because that music helps put me in the world of the story. I’m not listening to the music; I’m absorbing it.

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