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Diagnosis for Bad Audio?

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Terry Nutkins
Diagnosis for Bad Audio?
on Aug 25, 2013 at 4:13:22 am

Hi there,

I'm shooting a documentary and the audio from the latest interview appears to be noticeably worse than the rest.

Please listen here to the difference between a typical clip (first) and the problematic clip (second): http://reels.creativecow.net/film/20403

Could anyone please tell me what the problem is likely to be? Everything looked and sounded right at the time so its causing some confusion.

Could it be the mic being off-axis or too far away? Or could it be due to reflections due to the large, mainly empty and uncarpeted room? Can it be fixed in post at all?

FYI we have been using a Sennheiser MKH 40.

Many thanks if you can help!


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Bill Davis
Re: Diagnosis for Bad Audio?
on Aug 25, 2013 at 5:19:25 am

You've already identified the problems in your question.

The mic is working perfectly.

The recordings are different because the space they are in - and the positioning techniques used are different.

If you wanted a consistent sound in two very different acoustical environments - you'd need to use a mic and technique that diminished the room and isolated the voices better.

Close mic'd with not particularly sensitive lavs would have yielded a much more consistent sound in the different spaces.

If you're going to use these in a mx with music an/or effects, they'll both probably work just fine. But left isolated there's not much you can do other than trying to match the spacial characteristics of the second recording by applying some similar room sounding reverb to the first.

This is kinda why they make a whole lot of different kinds of mics - and why people hire experienced sound operators to rig and use them. Essentially because a mic that's totally great in one situation, will not be so great in another.

FWIW.

Know someone who teaches video editing in elementary school, high school or college? Tell them to check out http://www.StartEditingNow.com - video editing curriculum complete with licensed practice content.


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Terry Nutkins
Re: Diagnosis for Bad Audio?
on Aug 25, 2013 at 5:46:55 am

Thanks Bill.

I have to say that we did attempt to use the same positioning technique for all 17 interviews and this is the only audio that sounds noticeably different. He was moving around quite a bit but the mic appeared to be on-axis, as close as possible and aimed at the chest.

Do you think its primarily the room or the mic positioning or is it difficult to tell? All of the other spaces had carpet/furniture/curtains around to absorb reflections but this room was almost bare.

Is there really nothing that can be done at all to rectify it?


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Peter Groom
Re: Diagnosis for Bad Audio?
on Aug 25, 2013 at 9:10:45 am

Can you see the "room space "in the shot? If so I'd not worry too much. I've certain ally heard much worse. It's def the room life that is the difference not mics or axis. Does it not look in context with the pictures?
If you're in a cathedral , the audio should resemble that space and not be too dead or the brain becomes distracted with the imbalance between eye and ear.
NBC I was only able to listen on my ipad as I'm out of the uk at moment
Peter

Post Production Dubbing Mixer


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John Fishback
Re: Diagnosis for Bad Audio?
on Aug 25, 2013 at 9:22:21 pm

Isotope's new RX3 (coming in Sept) has a de-reverb module that might help. I've used Isotope RX, etc. since it was first introduced and its capabilities are terrific. If you can wait until September, it might help.

John

MacPro 8-core 2.8GHz, 16 GB RAM, OS 10.7.4, QT10.1, Kona 3, Dual Cinema 23, ATI Radeon HD 5870, 24" TV-Logic Monitor, ATTO ExpressSAS R380 RAID Adapter, PDE enclosure with 8-drive 6TB RAID 5
FCS 3 (FCP 7.0.3, Motion 4.0.3, Comp 3.5.3, DVDSP 4.2.2, Color 1.5.3)
FCP-X 10.0.7, Motion 5.0.6, Compressor 4.0.6

Pro Tools HD 10 w SYNC IO & 192 Digital I/O, Yamaha DM1000, Millennia Media HV-3C, Neumann U87, Schoeps Mk41 mics, Genelec DSP Monitors, Prima CDQ120 ISDN


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Ty Ford
Re: Diagnosis for Bad Audio?
on Aug 26, 2013 at 3:36:58 am

John,

You must be a miracle worker. Please tell us how you do that.

Regards,

Ty Ford
Cow Audio Forum Leader

Want better production audio?: Ty Ford's Audio Bootcamp Field Guide
Ty Ford Blog: Ty Ford's Blog


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Peter Groom
Re: Diagnosis for Bad Audio?
on Aug 26, 2013 at 9:36:31 am

Hi ty
I presume, like the rest of us, John will have to wait u tip September. There is to be a show of new rx3 at a hotel in Amsterdam during ibc 2013 for anyone interested.
I intend being there but it's a it of a hike for us users!!
Peter

Post Production Dubbing Mixer


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John Fishback
Re: Diagnosis for Bad Audio?
on Aug 26, 2013 at 11:38:32 am

I am indeed waiting. I used to think the only way to reduce reverb was to send the track to the NSA :)

John

MacPro 8-core 2.8GHz, 16 GB RAM, OS 10.7.4, QT10.1, Kona 3, Dual Cinema 23, ATI Radeon HD 5870, 24" TV-Logic Monitor, ATTO ExpressSAS R380 RAID Adapter, PDE enclosure with 8-drive 6TB RAID 5
FCS 3 (FCP 7.0.3, Motion 4.0.3, Comp 3.5.3, DVDSP 4.2.2, Color 1.5.3)
FCP-X 10.0.7, Motion 5.0.6, Compressor 4.0.6

Pro Tools HD 10 w SYNC IO & 192 Digital I/O, Yamaha DM1000, Millennia Media HV-3C, Neumann U87, Schoeps Mk41 mics, Genelec DSP Monitors, Prima CDQ120 ISDN


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Ty Ford
Re: Diagnosis for Bad Audio?
on Aug 26, 2013 at 1:10:29 pm

John,

I've tried a lot of software that claims to reduce reverb and for music they are somewhat successful. On dialog to reduce room ring, they are not. The only thing that was mildly effective was a six band system designed for Disney by George Massenburg for noise reduction.

He didn't design it for reverb reduction, but in my review of it, it worked pretty well.

So, multi band expander/gates, which I'm guessing are what he was on to, seem to work to some degree without artifacts.

Regards,

Ty

Want better production audio?: Ty Ford's Audio Bootcamp Field Guide
Ty Ford Blog: Ty Ford's Blog


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John Fishback
Re: Diagnosis for Bad Audio?
on Aug 26, 2013 at 1:56:18 pm

I agree with you, Ty. Up to now nothing's really worked. We'll know soon if RX3 can do it. Once upon a time I never thought it was possible to remove sounds from within a mixed track.

John

MacPro 8-core 2.8GHz, 16 GB RAM, OS 10.7.4, QT10.1, Kona 3, Dual Cinema 23, ATI Radeon HD 5870, 24" TV-Logic Monitor, ATTO ExpressSAS R380 RAID Adapter, PDE enclosure with 8-drive 6TB RAID 5
FCS 3 (FCP 7.0.3, Motion 4.0.3, Comp 3.5.3, DVDSP 4.2.2, Color 1.5.3)
FCP-X 10.0.7, Motion 5.0.6, Compressor 4.0.6

Pro Tools HD 10 w SYNC IO & 192 Digital I/O, Yamaha DM1000, Millennia Media HV-3C, Neumann U87, Schoeps Mk41 mics, Genelec DSP Monitors, Prima CDQ120 ISDN


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Ty Ford
Re: Diagnosis for Bad Audio?
on Aug 26, 2013 at 2:52:09 pm

Hey John,

Most recently I've tried UnVeil and DeVerb unsuccessfully for dialog. If you can pull out the ring, you can hear unpleasant artifacts. I'm guessing it's because it's just a bare voice (or two) and that sound is a lot more fragile than reverb on music.

http://www.zynaptiq.com/unveil/

http://www.SPL-USA.com/De_Verb_plugin_p/2986.htm

Adding music and/or sound design are still the best ways I know to mask room ring. I think about this every time I see/hear a Star Trek episode and hear the hum of the Enterprise; a very handy way to cover up low level audio problems and edits.

Regards,

Ty Ford

Want better production audio?: Ty Ford's Audio Bootcamp Field Guide
Ty Ford Blog: Ty Ford's Blog


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John Fishback
Re: Diagnosis for Bad Audio?
on Sep 12, 2013 at 9:42:57 pm

RX3 is released. Listen to the de-reverb demo about 1 minute in.

http://www.izotope.com/products/audio/rx/index.asp#

John

MacPro 8-core 2.8GHz, 16 GB RAM, OS 10.7.4, QT10.1, Kona 3, Dual Cinema 23, ATI Radeon HD 5870, 24" TV-Logic Monitor, ATTO ExpressSAS R380 RAID Adapter, PDE enclosure with 8-drive 6TB RAID 5
FCS 3 (FCP 7.0.3, Motion 4.0.3, Comp 3.5.3, DVDSP 4.2.2, Color 1.5.3)
FCP-X 10.0.7, Motion 5.0.6, Compressor 4.0.6

Pro Tools HD 10 w SYNC IO & 192 Digital I/O, Yamaha DM1000, Millennia Media HV-3C, Neumann U87, Schoeps Mk41 mics, Genelec DSP Monitors, Prima CDQ120 ISDN


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Ty Ford
Re: Diagnosis for Bad Audio?
on Sep 12, 2013 at 10:08:06 pm

John,

I'll listen in the studio later, but the De-verb (on my lap top) is still wanting.

Not that the task is by any means easy!

Regards,

Ty

Want better production audio?: Ty Ford's Audio Bootcamp Field Guide
Ty Ford Blog: Ty Ford's Blog


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Peter Groom
Re: Diagnosis for Bad Audio?
on Sep 13, 2013 at 6:34:56 pm

I think it "sounds" pretty interesting. Im always sceptical on a product demo clip, but Im off to IBC in Amsterdam this weekend where theyre launching so will hopefully get a good close look (with some of my own audio on a usb stick)
Peter

Post Production Dubbing Mixer


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John Fishback
Re: Diagnosis for Bad Audio?
on Sep 13, 2013 at 7:57:04 pm

Have fun at IBC. I agree with your assessment. It was a slightly reverberant room and it sounded like some clever gating being applied as well as their "deverb." There probably comes a point - with a very reverberant space - where you start to get more artifacts and funkiness. Let us know what you find.

John

MacPro 8-core 2.8GHz, 16 GB RAM, OS 10.7.4, QT10.1, Kona 3, Dual Cinema 23, ATI Radeon HD 5870, 24" TV-Logic Monitor, ATTO ExpressSAS R380 RAID Adapter, PDE enclosure with 8-drive 6TB RAID 5
FCS 3 (FCP 7.0.3, Motion 4.0.3, Comp 3.5.3, DVDSP 4.2.2, Color 1.5.3)
FCP-X 10.0.7, Motion 5.0.6, Compressor 4.0.6

Pro Tools HD 10 w SYNC IO & 192 Digital I/O, Yamaha DM1000, Millennia Media HV-3C, Neumann U87, Schoeps Mk41 mics, Genelec DSP Monitors, Prima CDQ120 ISDN


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