Lately, it's my favorite way to record when I'm hired to do the mix.
The process isn't as important when you're only tracking, and the music mixer doesn't need to view picture while mixing.
For me, it's like viewing the band from behind the control room glass or at the Monitor or FOH position. You're right there.
If an external video feed is not available, we use our Canon PTZ camera(s). We set up a rack exclusively for it. We record mix stems to a DA98HR, locked to a DVCAM. A TC generator/reader, TC video insert burner and a SR15 Distripalyzer completes the portable package at the moment.
I've mixed a bunch of live Gospel Albums while watching the video playback, which, I THINK were usually the final edited versions, or from feeds that were switched live, without any ISO cams, to the "Master" video.
I've done a lot of them, and I can't be certain which ones were which, since the budgets are usually very small, and the mixes are done so quickly, but MOST WERE final video edits, and I mixed to those.
When I DID know it was the 'Final Cut' video, no matter if they were switched live, or ISO edited picture, the fun part was always kicking up the instrument seen on cam a dB, or so, to sync with the video, as corny as that seems.
The only real drag was the "Chase" and "Lock Up" times, when doing things totally linear, using tape, (audio and/or video, no hard disc stuff used), especailly when dealing with any console automation trims, updates, etc....
BUT, I'm an Analogue guy at heart, so it's all good!!
I've also done live mixes to broadcast, straight from the console to "Air", with a multi (24) track, and the stereo audio on the video deck as backup/archive, which is REALLY fun and challanging!!
A fixed wide shot is REAL helpful, especially if you've never heard or seen the band before, but I usually would get the 'On Air' feed, and just be playing the console, like I used to mix 'Records', in the *Good Old Days*!!
I persuaded a film / video chum who gave me an "in concert" video mix job, to let me mix it 'to picture'. Perhaps it was a mixture of his kindness & inexperience that made him agree.
I used a large SSL and we mixed down direct to the 1inch 'video' (probably defunct now as a format??) and MCI 1/4 with center track timecode for a safety.. We took 6 VERY long days to do it.
Kooster recorded it . The band was called Big Country - the gig was in NYC.
No 'cheat' / fixer overdubs - all live..
We augmented the audience tracks a little with louder clapping sections from the gig when needed..
I co-mixed it with their live sound guy (a semi nightmare for both of us)
I mixed it at Videosonics, London. Owned by Dennis Weinrech a true gent and fellow American in London plus a very experienced producer engineer (Jeff Beck, Supertramp, Lenny Kravitz) and valve mic collector.
We hit trouble from the start - with sync. (to do with the film to video 'tele-cine' transfer done in the UK) The great tech team at Videosonics were able to fix it but not without considerable time and effort, we lost almost 2 days at the start. In the end we had to 'Jam Sync" new re-striped SMPTE while watching an oscilloscope and hand vary the tape speed to keep the sync perfect (the oscilloscope warned us of drift direction, slow or fast) It was a scary time for all.
Teething troubles aside, mixing to the picture was VERY ENJOYABLE INDEED but probably a totally unnecessary luxury. It was a massive 'ego buzz' for me, a simple rock n roll engineer unused to such luxury. Pressing go on not just the master tapes of quite a famous UK act but seeing the video as well on a giant monitor was super cool.
Being no slouch in the self promotion dept - I used the event to get myself a 4 page spread in the UK studio mag Studio Sound, pictures 'n all...
I took my Mom to the 'premier' and we both enjoyed my first ever 'rolling credit'.