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Audio for large venues - from Pan DVX100 forum

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Bob Cole
Audio for large venues - from Pan DVX100 forum
on May 9, 2006 at 12:34:30 am

(this was prompted by a post in another forum about audio for film festivals)

Audio for tv and audio for big halls are two different beasts -- and the tendency of some audio reinforcement people is to make the music rattle the chandeliers. As a video editor, I'd like to know how to deal with that.

Recently I shot a little "Happy Face" video for a convention, and edited it on the spot for playback in the very large convention hall. While editing, the audio was very clear, with an appropriate mix of music and dialog tracks.

But the sound system that the convention folks had engineered was so incredibly biased toward the music (probably bass) that the music overwhelmed the dialog. The sound engineer wanted to give me a lecture on audio mixing, and I wanted to throttle him. I know that this guy was a professional. During the convention set-up, he did the whole deal with white noise and pink noise; and I'm sure the results were just what the producers wanted: "Pump Me Up" music which made the room vibrate. But he really screwed up my video.

I'd like to ask the audio professionals in this forum what I could have done, both before the final mix, and after I'd given them the DVD. Mixing in the convention hall is not possible. We tried some on-the-spot EQ just before the session, but it was nowhere near enough. My only thought is to make two DVDs, one with what I think is the right mix, and the other with a very dialog-biased mix.

-- Bob C


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Matte
Re: Audio for large venues - from Pan DVX100 forum
on May 9, 2006 at 3:56:40 am

The simple answer:

I like to mix with the monitors turned UP LOUD for a large venue PB.

For broadcast spots, I mix with the monitors turned down low.

I "err on the side of" favoring dialogue over music for both.


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Will Salley
Re: Audio for large venues - from Pan DVX100 forum
on May 10, 2006 at 2:06:00 am

I've had this happen several times and as a result I just don't give them anything to boost. I cut off (hi-pass or EQ) anything below 120 Hz if the playback system has subs.

Just because someone may be a professional doesn't make them good at what they do.


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Bob Cole
thanks
on May 14, 2006 at 8:01:14 pm

Brilliant suggestion. These guys know how to handle audio for voice, and audio for music, but they just don't understand audio for music and voice.

Thank you.

-- Bob C


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Ty Ford
Re: Audio for large venues - from Pan DVX100 forum
on May 15, 2006 at 1:55:28 am

I hear this a lot from folks who mix on small speakers. You can't hear the low end so you don't know if you have too much or too little. You can't make color decisions on a B&W monitor. You can't make audio decisions if you can't hear what's on the tracks.

There are affordable monitors that do have low end response.

These are good: http://www.mackie.com/products/hr824/. You may not need a subwoofer.

These are better: http://www.klein-hummel.com/html/studio/studio_index_e.htm, but you really do need the extra subwoofer. They are smaller than the Mackies and may fit better in your space.

BTW, Where you put the speakers makes a noticeable difference. You want them at ear height as you sit at your workspace. They need to be placed so they form a triangle. The distance between the monitors should be slightly less than the distance between the speaker and you.

Putting them in corners over emphasizes the bass. Putting them flat against a wall, or on the floor (except the subwoofer) also changes the way they sound.

If you disregard this and decide to put them whereever it seems convenient, you are asking for trouble.

Regards,

Ty Ford



Ty Ford's "Audio Bootcamp Field Guide" was written for video people who want better audio. Find out more at http://www.tyford.com


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