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mixed format music splits Modular Synthesizers
Old 2 weeks ago
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Brian Campbell's Avatar

mixed format music splits

Some questions for re-recording mixers and/or score mixers.

I see that the split elements for some scores are delivered with mixed format and others are delivered in the same format regardless of content.
For example mixed format might be 5.1 for large perc and 5.0 for choir 4.0 for piano. In a fixed format all of the splits above would be 5.1 with the unused channels blank.

Also is there a preference for a Pro Tools session with everything in place or simply time stamped audio files?

In the case of audio files, polywav or split mono?
Old 2 weeks ago
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For mixed channel-width stems, check with the re-recording mixer on the receiving end. For each project. I’ll deliver either way and have. I prefer a consistent 5.1 because it makes it easier for my project archives and data bandwidth and storage space are cheap these days unlike the old days when the size mattered and useless empty tracks just made things more time-consuming.

I always deliver in a clean Pro Tools session with a guide track (usually the dialogue track) at top. Makes it faster for the re-recording mixer to get to work and if there are any questions, they have a session/guide track to check sync. If they want just the audio, they can always grab from the audio files folder. It also assures me that the relative placement was exactly right when it was sent to the stage. Manual errors happening with someone else laying out a session unfamiliar with the “music vs picture relationship” do happen so my making the session is a much safer bet than someone else dragging and placing/spotting stems.

I send interleaved now. Used to send multi-mono. There’s less a concern with this when sending a ProTools session (since going from ProTools to ProTools the internal channel order is consistent)
If sending variable channel width stems and no ProTools session and multi-mono files, you must send a written track sheet so they know what to expect. Like:

Orch: 5.1
Guitar: LCR
Perc: L R Ls Rs

In general, it’s a good idea to do that in all cases (and send it early before even sending mixes if possible.). I usually have a casual conversation with the re-recording mixer a week or greater before the dub to discuss delivery (format, how many channels are reserved for music, what the expected splits are and what kind of film score to expect, etc).

Remember film sound is a team sport so communication is key. Earlier the better. It can prevent a lot of unnecessary work and frustration on both sides of the process.

Last edited by pentagon; 2 weeks ago at 09:15 PM..
Old 1 week ago
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Brian Campbell's Avatar

Thanks for responding pentagon although I thought a few more would chime in. I was curious to see if there was any kind of consensus.
I prefer to have a consistent channel width as well. Also prefer to send Pro Tools sessions. Interesting idea to include the GT (dial), I'll include that in my queries to the mixers.
Yes 'team sport', always critical to communicate with the mixers no matter what element you're delivering.
Old 1 week ago
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As a rerecording mixer I prefer same format. But in Nuendo it is so easy to deal with so it really does not matter if it is.
As long as I get interleaved files (I do not like dealing with mono split stems).

However it needs to be 100% consistent, that is important to me and that the stem separation and naming is logical and also consistent.

If mixed in 3ch+ it needs to be done by someone with experience and knowledge and understanding of film mixing.
Otherwise, more separation and stereo stems will probably be a better choice.
Old 1 week ago
Originally Posted by ErikG View Post
If mixed in 3ch+ it needs to be done by someone with experience and knowledge and understanding of film mixing.
Otherwise, more separation and stereo stems will probably be a better choice.
I agree with that 100%... I prefer stereo stems unless you are very very experienced... and even then I end up re-balancing a lot of 5.1 stems, and at that point I'd just prefer stereo.

To the OP... Mixers pref. If I'm on a tight session and need to save voices... I'd probably say give me as wide as you need to, but no more. If i have the luxury of high track count, give me 5.1 everything, sure... depends on the project and mixer.
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