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Music Video Syncing?

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Trent Whittington
Music Video Syncing?
on May 6, 2009 at 12:44:13 pm

Hey fellow Cow's.

As a student at a film school one of our assessments is too shoot a music video in the next few weeks. We have all our pre-production sorted out except for how to accurately shoot a music video in sync. The problem being we are using Canon XH-A1's which do not have gen-lock.

So far we think the best way too shoot the music video is to have a separate person on audio playback of the actual song and record a reference of that playback aloud with the camera. Do you guy's have any tips/tricks on how we could improve on this or maybe a better way of doing it?

Thanks a bunch!

Trent Whittington - Currently studying Associate Degree in Digital Television

iMac - 24inch 3.06Ghz, FC STUDIO 2, Adobe Production Premium CS4.
Asus eee - 8.9inch 1.6Ghz 1Gb Ram, Windows XP


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Todd Terry
Re: Music Video Syncing?
on May 6, 2009 at 3:28:25 pm

Well, I'm sure this is not the right way to do it, but it works...

We don't really do music videos, but I have done a couple just for fun, and did them exactly the way you said...

Performers lipsynced, of course, and rather than shooting MOS we did record location audio, just for reference purposes.

Then back in post, I just used the video and the reference audio track to "eyeball sync" the footage back up with the real track. It's relatively easy once you get in the swing of it... although can be just a little tedius when there are lots of fast cuts, but not too bad.


T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com






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Rick Amundson
Re: Music Video Syncing?
on May 6, 2009 at 4:02:49 pm

2 things that can help. Re-record the music with 4 clicks at the beginning using the same timing as the music. This is referred to as a click track and you can achieve it in Garage Band or similar program. Lining up the clicks in post is pretty easy. The second thing is to use a slate. If you close the slate on one of the clicks (keep it consistent) you will also have a visual reference for syncing.

Best of luck!

Rick Amundson
Producer/Director/DP
Screenscape Studios
Bravo Romeo Entertainment
http://www.screenscapestudios.com
http://www.bravoromeo.com
http://www.indeliblemovie.com


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Mark Suszko
Re: Music Video Syncing?
on May 6, 2009 at 4:22:55 pm

Make sure you stay 48 khz for all the sound, on set and in the edit, or you'll find your lipsynch will keep drifting as you try to edit. We chose one file to be the "master" version and played that on-set thru a CD player. In the bad old days you used cassette or RTR audio in the field for playback and speed issues were a constant hassle, even using crystal synch generators. You kids have things sooo easy today...;-) You can use ipods and hide the earbud or use a mini speaker as well.


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Joshua Porter
Re: Music Video Syncing?
on May 6, 2009 at 7:17:47 pm

Some of the more fun effects of shooting a music video is to speed up the music track about 25%. This gives a cool slow-mo look when playing back in 30 (29.97) frames per second.

Joshua Porter
Producer/Director/DP
I AMedia
http://www.visions2video.com


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Mark Suszko
Re: Music Video Syncing?
on May 6, 2009 at 10:16:53 pm

Yeah, if the singer can keep up with the lyrics:-)


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Trent Whittington
Re: Music Video Syncing?
on May 7, 2009 at 9:31:29 am

Thank's alot guy's really appreciate all the advice. We have also been speaking to the audio department and they said it might be possible to record a constant metronome sound as suggested except take input it via an XLR on one track and the song on the other track.

Trent Whittington - Currently studying Associate Degree in Digital Television

iMac - 24inch 3.06Ghz, FC STUDIO 2, Adobe Production Premium CS4.
Asus eee - 8.9inch 1.6Ghz 1Gb Ram, Windows XP


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John Fishback
Re: Music Video Syncing?
on May 7, 2009 at 7:01:45 pm

All good advice above. Here's an amazing software product introduced at NAB that will synchronize amy number of cameras without timecode. Watch this movie. http://www.singularsoftware.com/autosync/

John

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Paul Harper
Re: Music Video Syncing?
on May 8, 2009 at 4:30:08 am

Great ideas for you to consider. As far as accurately maintaining sync, the 'old school' way to do that was with a Denecke slate connected to an audio recorder playing back the original recording of the music (often dubbed directly from CD to a Nagra recorder). Every time you rolled tape (film), you would pan the camera to record the slate, which would be displaying the time code from your original music. During editing, your editor would be able to match every shot to the correct place in the music. Now how to do that without renting expensive equipment? Make a recording from the CD to your best quality video file. Then, make a VHS window burn of that recording. Get an old TV/VCR combo and bring it on set with your window burned tape. At the beginning of every take, roll the appropriate part of the VHS tape. and then roll your camera. Pan over to the TV set and capture the time code in the window burn. You now have a reference point between your on-set footage and the original recording. You may need to ampllify the V
HS audio so the performers can hear it in order to lip sync. *Just as effective as the "pro" technique, and almost no cost.


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Lisa Farr
Re: Music Video Syncing?
on May 21, 2009 at 9:38:57 pm

There's a trick you can do using longitudinal time code (LTC) and FCP multicam. I haven't tried it myself, YMMV.

Longitudinal time code puts the time code information on the second track of audio on a tape. You can record your music on an LTC capable camera in black. This will put the music on your first audio track and timecode on your second. Capture both channels and export the music/timecode mashup to an iPod. You can then take the iPod on location, feeding the timecode channel into the camera's audio and the music into a speaker for the performer. Import your media to FCP and sync up using multicam.


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