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simple audio advice

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Ian Cooley
simple audio advice
on Aug 12, 2008 at 7:32:14 am

I am an up and coming documentary editor and I am creating this post in hope that I can find some good advice. I would like to create my audio mix in either final cut or soundtrack pro. I am somewhat familiar with equalizers and compressors and use them regularly in my mixes. what are some good resources that I can look to to improve my audio mixing skills web, book, or other. Thanks for any response

Ian Cooley
Videographer and Editor





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Byron Campbell
Re: simple audio advice
on Aug 12, 2008 at 4:19:26 pm

Sorry, you will never get a mix in the box (FCP/AVID) like a real pro can using Protools or a main stream DAW. I can give you many examples of Audio mixed in the box and a Protools mix an the differences are staggering. If you really want a good mix seek out a good professional that knows what wow and flutter are..How to use all of his skills as well as creative in his mixing to help your piece by leaps and bounds. Another miss conception in that editors think thay are saving money by doing the mix in the box. If you have a good engineer it should take him half the time it would an video editor, plus the audio enginner's ear should be in tune a lot more.



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Will Salley
Re: simple audio advice
on Aug 13, 2008 at 5:53:00 am

[Byron Campbell] "Sorry, you will never get a mix in the box (FCP/AVID) like a real pro can using Protools or a main stream DAW"

I disagree!

For documentary production like Ian is doing, it is no problem to get excellent results from FCP or Soundtrack. I happen to own several Pro Tools systems and several FCP workstations and I can achieve very similar results with both. Especially hen one considers the time involved in outputting and transferring files to be used in Pro tools, a great deal of the same work can be achieved in FCP - and you don't have to have your video "locked".

Actually, Apple Logic would be a good fit for someone using FCP and needing the extra capabilities of a DAW. More importantly, your edit system should have a good signal chain and monitoring setup that can be trusted to reveal an accurate mix. Beyond that, I don't know of any good training books specific to audio for video post. Not saying there aren't any, I just haven't heard about them.

My advice would be to get as much experience doing it on your own and when you run into a specific problem or question, ask it here on the COW.





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Byron Campbell
Re: simple audio advice
on Aug 13, 2008 at 4:42:27 pm

I have been working with major networks for some 29 years in Post Audio and in Video editing. You claim that the work flow is long with FCP to Protools. I too have that set up and it is just a few seconds. I have a Protools HD rig and a FCP studio 2 setup and I find it very easy to go from FCP to PT then back with a final mix to FCP to lay it off to a tape or a video file. You do not have to be picture lock either.
The pluses to having an engineer work on your project is huge, their creativity, knowledge can make your project go from good to fantastic in a heartbeat. The audio that I receive from the field on pieces is absolutely horrible these days. The DP thinks that he can record audio and direct a shoot and not have to worry about the audio levels etc...I am asked a lot of times to please fix my audio..I never heard that in my edit..Where did that come from? THese are statements that I receive from my clients and others that I am trying to help out. I just took a piece that was recorded in the field at it was so low and close to the noise floor that it was extremely hard to even hear the talent. With my experience I was able to get it sound very good and it aired on natioanal tv.
I would suggest that you use a FCP rough mix for approvals, but for the final I would have it go through a engineer, using a DAW like Protools, Logic etc...



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