The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 Search This Thread  Search This Forum  Search Reviews  Search Gear Database  Search Gear for sale  Search Gearslutz Go Advanced
film post pro guys Dynamics Plugins
Old 5th June 2006
  #1
Lives for gear
 
Chucho's Avatar
 

Thumbs down film post pro guys

Is it not possible these days to produce film dialogue and FX tracks in which you can actually hear what people are saying ( heros have to whisper there days ) but also have guns and explosions at such a level where you don't think your ears are going to bleed?
It's really boring having to ride the levels on my remote control.

I think there are things called compressors / expanders which will help.
Old 5th June 2006
  #2
Lives for gear
 
max cooper's Avatar
 

I've noticed this too. I run my DVD player through my Pro Tools rig so I can run the audio through an MC2000 compressor.

When I had a surround processor and a center channel speaker, the dialog was much easier to hear.

Is there a separate stereo audio track on DVD's or does the DVD player have to make stereo out of the 5.1 track?

If so, is the dialog getting lost in that?
Old 5th June 2006
  #3
Lives for gear
 
Tibbon's Avatar
So we complain that there aren't realistic dynamics in music and that it's overcompressed, but yet when it's super dynamic in film... it's too much? What gives?

Just use the K-20 system or whatever and it's fine.
Old 5th June 2006
  #4
Lives for gear
 
max cooper's Avatar
 

Can you imagine having realistic dynamics in a movie? That would be pretty funny.

Cut from a plane crashing to a conversation in the control tower.

AAAAAAHHHHHHGGGGGG! heh
Old 5th June 2006
  #5
Lives for gear
 
celticrogues's Avatar
 

Having no dynamics in a movie would be pretty funny too ...
I would be very impressed if someone could produce a whisper that was as loud as a gunshot!

Cheers,
-Mike
Old 5th June 2006
  #6
i think some stuff falls through the cracks because of time constraints. i do a lot of work on cable tv promos, so i'll spend 8 hours mixing :30
when i work on a tune, say 2:50, for me it's already long-format! i'll spend up to 16 hours on the mix.
and of course, remember that in anything that involves video, 97% of the time (read $$$) is spent on video. by the time it gets to the audio room, the client is asking if you can cut your 8 hour session down to 6 because the money's gone! must be very frustrating.
Old 5th June 2006
  #7
Lives for gear
 
Geert van den Berg's Avatar
 

I have a feeling that a lot of post-pro guys know more of what they're doing than a lot of uneducated music mixers...

Mixing for cinema's has had calibrated monitoring levels for years...

I like the dynamics, and offcourse there good and bad mixes, but at least they're not flat as a pancake.

It could happen that your DVD player ****s up the downmix from 5.1 to stereo though... so listen to it on a 5.1 system with a good centre speaker.
Old 5th June 2006
  #8
Lives for gear
 
Roland's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geert van den Berg
I have a feeling that a lot of post-pro guys know more of what they're doing than a lot of uneducated music mixers...

Mixing for cinema's has had calibrated monitoring levels for years...

I like the dynamics, and offcourse there good and bad mixes, but at least they're not flat as a pancake.

It could happen that your DVD player ****s up the downmix from 5.1 to stereo though... so listen to it on a 5.1 system with a good centre speaker.

Of course you are right, many good post-pro guys out there and it is a highly skilled job. To anser the original posters question, on a DVD sometimes there are two (or more with DTS etc) soundtracks and sometimes there will be a stereo version and a surround version, however it is possible during the making of a surround mix to encode instructions to the DVD player telling it how to treat the mix in the event of stereo playing. This is commonly refered to as foldown.

I'm not sure how much calibration in levels goes on in cinema's there days, but it used to be common for film mixers to deliberately lower the level of the sound at the begining of a film in order to get it turned up, thus making it sound louder!


Regards to all


Roland
Old 5th June 2006
  #9
Motown legend
 
Bob Olhsson's Avatar
 

DVD versions often aren't mixed by the same folks who handled the theatrical mix.

We've reached the point of recognizing that you can't just eq the theatrical mix but we haven't reached the point of being willing to pay for a top-gun mixer to also mix the DVD.
Old 5th June 2006
  #10
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

in comparison to voice the effects are way to loud.
i would rather see the dvd's squished and lets have some dynamics on the music.
their could be a lot less dynamic's in the dvd's and still have plenty.
Old 5th June 2006
  #11
Gear Nut
 

Most DVD players nowadays come with a 'night time' setting. It's basically a built in compressor to even out dynamics so you can watch the movie without waking the kids and still here the dialogue.

Personally, I like big dynamics in movies. The idea is to sound huge on the home theatre setup. If it's too much, use the built in compression. Not sure how smooth it'll sound, though.

n
Old 5th June 2006
  #12
Lives for gear
 
joaquin's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Olhsson
DVD versions often aren't mixed by the same folks who handled the theatrical mix.

We've reached the point of recognizing that you can't just eq the theatrical mix but we haven't reached the point of being willing to pay for a top-gun mixer to also mix the DVD.
Hi Mr. Olhsson.
What aspects do you think are key for successful DVD remix? When you mention EQ...what sort of approach are you refering to?
Thank you!
Old 5th June 2006
  #13
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Olhsson
DVD versions often aren't mixed by the same folks who handled the theatrical mix.

We've reached the point of recognizing that you can't just eq the theatrical mix but we haven't reached the point of being willing to pay for a top-gun mixer to also mix the DVD.
It is more that production company dont want to pay for a different mix(TV mix).
And there is still a blur about room calibration(SPL level) for home theater
Old 5th June 2006
  #14
Lives for gear
 
Roland's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Olhsson
DVD versions often aren't mixed by the same folks who handled the theatrical mix.

We've reached the point of recognizing that you can't just eq the theatrical mix but we haven't reached the point of being willing to pay for a top-gun mixer to also mix the DVD.

Hi Bob,

We are involved in a lot of DVD work (albeit not top hollywood titles) and I would suspect that the versions we see at home are more often than not straight telecines (or in the modern age) digital transfer from the pre transfered to film version.

Initially with DVD, different companies went overboard with sprecial features, 3D menu's in order to make their product stand out in the market place. DTS also "facilitated" several companies to remix soundtracks in DTS in order to promote their licensed products. Much more the norm now is a fairly straightforward release with a couple of "cheap and easy" extras. Often these were promo's shot at the time of the films theatrical release in order to promote it.

All this being said, their is little or no reason why a film should need to be mixed differently for the home market. A good mix is a good mix, possibly the problems that some people are experienceing are due to boutique style home surround. On my own home theatre I have PMC's powered with Bryston amps. Audio for films is rarely a problem, however s one earlier poster mentioned there are descrepencies with overall levels between differing discs. This is not only the product of no realy true accepted standards, but the software for DVD audio encoding allows for several vagaries such as dialogue normalisation and general compression curves such as film standard, film light, music standard, etc. All this was designed to help in the production of acceptable home sound, the reality is that this is not likely to be achieved on the budgets that most people are prepared to invest on a domestic system.

Regards to all


Roland
Old 5th June 2006
  #15
Lives for gear
 
Chucho's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tibbon
So we complain that there aren't realistic dynamics in music and that it's overcompressed, but yet when it's super dynamic in film... it's too much? What gives?

Just use the K-20 system or whatever and it's fine.
I just have a little TV like a lot of people.

The dynamics I'm talking about are too much because I literally can't hear the dialogue and the FX are a joke - especially with 2 babies next door.
Old 5th June 2006
  #16
Lives for gear
 
Jazzpunk's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ricey
i think some stuff falls through the cracks because of time constraints. i do a lot of work on cable tv promos, so i'll spend 8 hours mixing :30
when i work on a tune, say 2:50, for me it's already long-format! i'll spend up to 16 hours on the mix.
and of course, remember that in anything that involves video, 97% of the time (read $$$) is spent on video. by the time it gets to the audio room, the client is asking if you can cut your 8 hour session down to 6 because the money's gone! must be very frustrating.
You get 8 hours to mix a :30 spot for cable TV?! Must be nice man, I get 6-8 hours to mix half hour network reality tv shows (that's from OMF to finish) and clients out here still wonder why it takes 'so long'. I must be on the wrong side of the post biz!

You are dead on with your take on time/money spent on video vs. audio. I had a fellow gearslut messaging me about how to get into post audio and I kept telling him to go the Final Cut route and be a video editor (even though I know that's not the answer he wanted to hear). I'm currently getting certified in Final Cut as well as After Effects to make the move myself. I'm tired of walking past the editing bays and seeing the video editors on myspace while I'm getting carpal tunnal busting my ass on Pro Tools!

There's more work for video editors out here which=more money for more gear and let's face it, isn't that what going to work is really about in the first place?!
Old 5th June 2006
  #17
Lives for gear
 
Jazzpunk's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chucho
I just have a little TV like a lot of people.

The dynamics I'm talking about are too much because I literally can't hear the dialogue and the FX are a joke - especially with 2 babies next door.
I think you can thank Bruckheimer for that. IMO his films ushered in the era of 'louder music and fx=better box office sales' or 'louder music and fx=no one will notice how lame the plots and scripts of my films are'.

Now everyone is just keeping up with the Joneses, same thing that has happened with the mastering game in the music biz.
Old 5th June 2006
  #18
Lives for gear
 
max cooper's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ndogg
Most DVD players nowadays come with a 'night time' setting. It's basically a built in compressor to even out dynamics so you can watch the movie without waking the kids and still here the dialogue.
Any of you guys try running your mixes through this?
Old 5th June 2006
  #19
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jazzpunk
You get 8 hours to mix a :30 spot for cable TV?! Must be nice man, I get 6-8 hours to mix half hour network reality tv shows (that's from OMF to finish) and clients out here still wonder why it takes 'so long'. I must be on the wrong side of the post biz!
uh... i've worked on both the 6 to 8 hour tv show mix and the 8+ hour :30 spot mix. I'd rather do the tv show. Ad people are psycho. It's not so nice when it takes that long. I think you're on the right side of the post biz already, Jazzpunk.

On the other hand, sometimes the :30 spot only takes an hour and the day is wide open. If only that were the case more often.

n
Old 5th June 2006
  #20
Lives for gear
 
Jazzpunk's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ndogg
uh... i've worked on both the 6 to 8 hour tv show mix and the 8+ hour :30 spot mix. I'd rather do the tv show. Ad people are psycho. It's not so nice when it takes that long. I think you're on the right side of the post biz already, Jazzpunk.

On the other hand, sometimes the :30 spot only takes an hour and the day is wide open. If only that were the case more often.

n
I've worked in both formats as well ndogg. I've found TV producers to be pretty psycho as well but guess the grass is always greener!

Back when I was assisting, I remember watching a mixer bill an entire day for 'mixing' a Nissan ad that consisted of a well known pop rock tune and nothing more. I'd kill for a day like that!

Guess I'm just getting burnt on churning out mediocre crap for people who can't hear the difference and wouldn't pay for it even if they could.
Old 6th June 2006
  #21
Gear Nut
 
cush's Avatar
 

I do the feature work at a place that specializes in trailers and tv/radio spots for major studios. Every time I pass a studio where the client is in the room (or on the phone approving over the fiber), there are two words that are uttered without fail: "Louder" and "Brighter!"

Everyone's gone deaf.
Old 6th June 2006
  #22
jhg
Lives for gear
 
jhg's Avatar
 

Quote:
All this being said, their is little or no reason why a film should need to be mixed differently for the home market. A good mix is a good mix, possibly the problems that some people are experienceing are due to boutique style home surround. On my own home theatre I have PMC's powered with Bryston amps. Audio for films is rarely a problem, however s one earlier poster mentioned there are descrepencies with overall levels between differing discs. This is not only the product of no realy true accepted standards, but the software for DVD audio encoding allows for several vagaries such as dialogue normalisation and general compression curves such as film standard, film light, music standard, etc. All this was designed to help in the production of acceptable home sound, the reality is that this is not likely to be achieved on the budgets that most people are prepared to invest on a domestic system.
I don't really agree with all points fully.

From your description, you have an excellent sounding home theater system. Most consumers don't. Subwoofer stuffed where ever it fits, or adorned with a blanket and used as an endtable "Why won't anything stay on that table" Speakers - those "full range" satellites put on anything in sight.

To be approved by Dolby in order to obtain access to printmastering equipment, the spec includes 3 full range front speakers and 4 surround speakers, proper subwoofer action.

Much different than than a lot of peoples home theater in a box.

A seperate "for home" mix at a more modest facility geared towards producing television and dvd related products to create a mix tailered more towards the average home viewer/listener will sound better in the average environs.

My thoughts.

Regards,

jhg
Old 6th June 2006
  #23
Quote:
Originally Posted by ndogg
uh... i've worked on both the 6 to 8 hour tv show mix and the 8+ hour :30 spot mix. I'd rather do the tv show. Ad people are psycho. n
i totally agree - but cable TV promos are a very different animal! budgets aren't nearly as high, which equates to a lot less infighting, modest and friendly producers... royalty situation is WAY different - i mean, the stakes are just lower, and the psycho ratio is so much lower. kind of the middle-class of media. i love the people i work for, i just wish they were in my room more! gets annoying to see the same project next door in Final Cut for 4 weeks, and then they want you to bust ass for 6-8 hours.

and i should specify: i say 'mix', because that's what it's billed as. but really it's Voiceover record/edit, music edit, SFX,versioning(:30, :20, :15, :10) Tagging(usually around 6 tags per version).... and of course, mixing and then laying everything back to Digibetas(tape 1 has the Airmaster, tape 2 has the stems)
it's a full day.
Old 6th June 2006
  #24
Quote:
Originally Posted by jhg
To be approved by Dolby in order to obtain access to printmastering equipment, the spec includes 3 full range front speakers and 4 surround speakers, proper subwoofer action.
Having mixed a couple Dolby SR-D features (yes, with the Dolby guy coming out and the MO disc and everything), I can tell you that you don't need 4 surround speakers. One of the features we did on a smaller stage with just a pair of surrounds. (no disagreement about your point about a separate TV mix though)

Film mixes indeed have trouble translating well to home use. Clearly translation to a built-in speaker in a TV is next to impossible, but even to a pretty good home theater system, there are issues. First, the room curve applied to theatrical B-chains does not exist in the home. Also, the size of the room and the level of playback (typically lower at home) have an impact. You generally need to mix dialog a few dB hotter for home viewing. Any re-recording mixer who has done both film and TV can tell you that conventional levels for each are different, and TV has a much smaller dynamic range.
Old 6th June 2006
  #25
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by cush
I do the feature work at a place that specializes in trailers and tv/radio spots for major studios. Every time I pass a studio where the client is in the room (or on the phone approving over the fiber), there are two words that are uttered without fail: "Louder" and "Brighter!"

Everyone's gone deaf.
I once had a client 'approving' a music mix by listening to it on their cell phone while driving down the freeway... IN A CONVERTIBLE WITH THE TOP DOWN!!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA... I wish I was making that up. I repeat: ad people are psycho.

Now network promos... some of the nicest people I've worked with were at a network doing the in-house promos. Unfortunately, I was only filling in for someone else temporarily. Dang. Lots of work, but the realistic attitudes were refreshing.

Joaquin: I have heard that -10 dBfs is a common ceiling for tv broadcast mixing, but in my experience you can often go over that. I would talk to the network your mix will be airing on for their specified limits and go by that.

I don't know exactly how to get things to sound 'best' on the air. There seems to be a complete lack of standards across different networks as to what level goes to air. I may see a commercial I mixed on a few different networks, and it sounds different all the time. It may be what just preceded it on the air, or who did dubs before shipping to the networks... I don't know. I have had mixes go to air with peaks of -6 dBfs regularly. When I was an assistant, I used to see some mixes go out peaking at -4 dBfs, but with L2's and other brickwall digital limiters, that probably shouldn't be happening now.

I should add, I assume we're talking about a reference level of -20 dBfs = 0 VU, right? That's what we use in Toronto. I think I still pay more attention to VU meters than digital.

n
Old 6th June 2006
  #26
Lives for gear
 
Jazzpunk's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ndogg
Now network promos... some of the nicest people I've worked with were at a network doing the in-house promos. Unfortunately, I was only filling in for someone else temporarily. Dang. Lots of work, but the realistic attitudes were refreshing.
I've done the same gig and enjoyed it as well. I'm sure some networks must be a drag but I had a really good time and found the in house promo producers to be very kick back. Great gig if you can get it!
Old 6th June 2006
  #27
Lives for gear
 
audiomichael's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by max cooper
Can you imagine having realistic dynamics in a movie? That would be pretty funny.

Cut from a plane crashing to a conversation in the control tower.

AAAAAAHHHHHHGGGGGG! heh
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!

Your funny.
Old 6th June 2006
  #28
Lives for gear
 
elambo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by ndogg
I repeat: ad people are psycho.
Yes, no doubt, some are completely psycho. Actually, I'd say that they're psycho about covering their asses. I've been mixing and composing in the ad world for well over a decade, and my girlfriend is a senior producer at one of the bigger agencies, so I've had a nice peek into the workings of the "approval" process. The decision makers that come to mix sessions (or rather, the ones making the decisions at that exact moment, only to be overridden an hour later by someone else) are so nervous about losing their jobs, or hearing from someone back at the agency that they screwed up, that they're almost unable to make solid decisions. So it's revision after revision. Try this. Now try that. I don't know, what do you think... Are we getting enough "T" in "This product will kill you in four months?"

About the dynamics of DVDs - I'd be surprised if there are many film studios that really care about remixing for home theater use. In their minds, the mix is done. I've tried to explain to a producer how important it was that we do a separate mix for the DVD, and I still remember the look on his face. I knew right away that he wasn't going to spend a dime on a 2nd mix and I couldn't say anything to change his mind.

Coincidentally, it's VERY easy to explain to an advertising producer how important it is that a mix for a commercial that's going to air on both TV and the cinema get separate mixes. I've done separate mixes quite a few times. One time they even paid for us to review our mix in a movie theater, make revisions, and revisit the theater for a 2nd audition. This was THEIR suggestion and they paid for everything.

Not so psycho after all. But it depends on the agency. Some really have their **** together and provide a collective, creative-nurturing atmosphere, and those ad folks tend to be quick, decisive, and do the best work.
Old 6th June 2006
  #29
Lives for gear
 
Tibbon's Avatar
If people can't/won't set up proper surround systems in a home theatre, I am then totally a fan of them using something like the YSP-1 from Yamaha, that uses 42 little speakers to create a 'fake' surround that works... well not perfectly, but certainly better than speakers randomly arranged in the room.

It's actually rather hard to screw it up with a YSP-1
Old 6th June 2006
  #30
Lives for gear
 
elambo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tibbon
It's actually rather hard to screw it up with a YSP-1
That's might be true, but aren't those things enormous? I, for one, wouldn't want that front and center in my home theater.
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Similar Threads
Thread
Thread Starter / Forum
Replies
gsilbers / Post Production forum
12
nukmusic / Remote Possibilities in Acoustic Music and Location Recording
5
hammer / So much gear, so little time
5

Forum Jump
Forum Jump